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Alpine CDE-HD138BT

CD receiver

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  • Alpine CDE-HD138BT

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  • Alpine CDE-HD138BT

  • Alpine CDE-HD138BT

Item# 500HD138BT
 

Review Summary

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Our take on the Alpine CDE-HD138BT

by Zak Billmeier
Alpine

Why replace your factory radio?

Two good reasons - sound quality and cool features. A new car stereo offers power that's superior to most factory radios, along with more sophisticated tone controls. And most car stereos offer built-in or optional features that add safety and fun to life in your car, including inputs for your iPod or MP3 player, Bluetooth connectivity for hands-free cell phone calls, satellite radio or HD Radio reception, and connections for building an audio system in your car.

Alpine Authorized Online Dealer

Meet Alpine's fully-loaded receiver

If you're looking for a do-it-all car stereo or have eyes on building a system, Alpine's CDE-HD138BT CD receiver packs a serious punch. You'll get features like an HD Radio® tuner, built-in Bluetooth®, and Pandora® Internet radio control. Alpine's legendary sound quality rounds out the package, along with plenty of audio adjustments.

Alpine CDE-HD138BT

Built-in HD Radio™ with iTunes® tagging

Alpine's HD Radio tuner lets you tune in digital AM/FM broadcasts, significantly pumping up the sound quality. Participating FM stations sound about as good as a CD, while AM stations sound like traditional FM. Plus while your iPod®'s connected and you've got an HD Radio station tuned in, you can "tag" songs you like for later purchase from the iTunes® store.

Bluetooth: it's not just for calling hands free

You may already know that Bluetooth offers a hands-free calling solution while you're on the road. That's still true, but now it gives you a whole lot more. If your phone or another device supports Bluetooth music streaming, you can beam your tunes and control playback with the CDE-HD138BT. You won't get full control this way, but you can perform some basic functions like track up and track down. Best of all, no wires are needed.

But of course, you can still talk hands-free, and Alpine helps make sure you and your callers can understand each other. First, you can mount the included microphone in a good spot in front of you so it'll have no problem picking up your voice. Next, the receiver lets you adjust the mic's gain to best match your speaking voice. You can also tweak the phone output and ring volume, so you won't go diving for the volume knob every time someone calls. And, last of all, this Alpine downloads up to a thousand names from your phonebook, and allows you to search by alphabet to find the number you want.

Put Pandora® in your dash

Alpine gives you Pandora right where you want it — in your dash. You can change stations, skip tracks, and rate songs just like you do online. Your smartphone and a free Pandora app are the key. Android™ and BlackBerry® users get full control through the Bluetooth® connection, while iPhone® lovers get basic control (play, pause, track up) over USB. connection.

Add satellite radio

Satellite radio lovers, you're in luck — the CDE-HD138BT works with SiriusXM's SXV200 tuner, which lets you dial in your favorite programming plus get some cool features. You can pause and rewind live programming, get game and music alerts, and even tag songs you like while your iPod's connected.

Want to keep your steering wheel controls?

In most vehicles, you can use an adapter to connect your vehicle's steering wheel controls to this Alpine stereo. Connect a few wires, then program the adapter for your particular car and the CDE-HD138BT, and you'll retain the convenience of your steering wheel controls. Check the "Accessories" tab for compatible adapters.

Bluetooth note: Use of this receiver's Bluetooth features will depend upon your phone's Bluetooth capabilities. Learn more in our article explaining Bluetooth profiles.

iPod note: If you're going to use your iPod with this receiver, be sure to check "Details" for specific iPod model compatibility.

Highlights:

    General features:
    • CD receiver with AM/FM tuner
    • built-in MOSFET amplifier (18 watts RMS CEA-2006/50 peak x 4 channels)
    • built-in Bluetooth for hands-free calling and audio streaming
    • built-in HD Radio tuner
    • full Pandora® control for Android and BlackBerry over Bluetooth
    • basic Pandora control for iPhone
    Audio features:
    • 5-band parametric/7-band graphic equalizer with ten presets
    • built-in high- and low-pass filters
    Expandability:
    • works with SiriusXM SXV100V1 tuner and SXV200V1 tuner
    • works with Alpine's KTP-445 Power Pack plug-in amplifier (45 watts RMS x 4)
    • inputs: front USB port, front auxiliary input
    • outputs: 6-channel preamp outputs (4-volt front, rear, subwoofer)
    Other features and specs:
     

    Hands-on research from the Crutchfield Labs (what are the Labs?)

    Features and Specs
    General
    CEA-2006 Compliant
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    Yes
    RMS Power Output
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    18 watts
    Peak Output
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    50 watts
    RMS Power Bandwidth
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    20-20kHz
    Preamp Outputs
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    6-channel
    Sub Preamp Outputs
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    Yes
    Switchable Rear Preamp Outputs
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    No
    Preamp Voltage
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    4 volts
    Display Color
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    White
    Key Button Color
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    Blue
    EQ Bands
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    7
    Wireless Remote
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    Optional
    Steering Wheel Control Compatible
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    Adapter required
    Parts Warranty
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    1 Year
    Labor Warranty
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    1 Year
    Expandability
    AUX Input
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    Front
    USB Input
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    Front
    Memory Card Slot
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    USB memory
    Bluetooth Compatible
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    Built-in
    Satellite Radio Ready
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    SiriusXM
    HD Radio
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    Built-in
    Navigation
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    No
    iPod Compatibility
    Full size
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    Classic/5Gen
    Nano
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    7/6/5/4/3/2/1
    Touch
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    5/4/3/2/1
    Mini
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    No
    iPhone
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    5/4S/4/3GS/3G/2G
    Tuner
    FM Sensitivity
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    9.3 dBf
    European Tuning
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    No
    Seek/Scan
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    Seek
    Radio Data System
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    No
    Product Research
    What's in the box?

    Download owner's manual

    • AM/FM/CD receiver (with 10A ATC fuse inserted in chassis)
    • Face (attached)
    • Sleeve (installed)
    • Trim ring (installed)
    • Wiring harness
    • Microphone (with attached 13' cable terminated by a right-angle 3.5mm connector)
    • Visor clip
    • Hard plastic face case
    • 4 Flat-head ISO-DIN screws (M5 x 8mm)
    • 2 Radio removal tools
    • Face-fixing screw
    • Owner's Manual CD-ROM
    • Quick Reference Guide (Eng/Fre/Spa)
    • System Requirements (for CD-ROM)
    • Online Product Registration card

    Our Product Research Team

    At Crutchfield, you'll get detailed, accurate information that's hard to find elsewhere. That's because we have our own in-house Product Research team — they open the box, verify contents, check the owner's manual, and record dimensions, features and specs. We stay on top of new products and technologies to help people make informed choices.

    HD Radio + SiriusXM Ready
    Built-in Bluetooth
    Pandora App Control for Android/Blackberry
    USB/iPod/Aux Connectivity
    Disc Playback
    Audio Section
    Display Features
    Remote Control

    HD Radio + SiriusXM Ready

    HD Radio: With the built-in HD Radio tuner, you can receive digital AM/FM broadcasts from local stations where available. HD Radio lets you listen to the radio with the same fidelity as your digital music. HD Radio features high quality audio, FM multi-casting, and data services. With HD Radio, your FM stations offer near CD-quality sound, AM stations provide FM-like sound, and there is crystal-clear reception with no audio distortion. Best of all, HD Radio is 100% subscription free. HD Radio is the system for digital AM and FM broadcasting in the U.S. More than 2,000 radio stations are broadcasting their primary signals in digital HD Radio technology, as a free service. Go to HDRadio.com to check for HD Radio stations in your area. The unit's tuner also supports analog AM/FM broadcasts.

    Station Text: AM/FM digital stations can offer text and data such as artist names and song titles. The built-in HD Radio tuner displays song title, artist and station information on the display of the Alpine CDE-HD138BT.

    Multicasting: Multicasting is the ability to broadcast multiple program streams over a single AM/FM frequency. this increases the amount and diversity of content choices. A maximum of eight multicast station channels (HD1-HD8) can be selected on this unit.

    iTunes Tagging: It is possible to save the song's information (tag) from and HD Radio broadcasting station to your USB-direct connected iPod/iPhone. The songs will show up in a playlist called "Tagged" in iTunes the next time you sync your iPod/iPhone. Then you can directly buy the songs you want from the iTunes Music Store. You can "tag" up to 50 songs.

    Note: Your iPod/iPhone must have at least 50MB of free space to "tag" and transfer songs. iTunes 7.4 or later is required to purchase "tagged" songs.

    Preset Tuning: The built-in tuner provides 12 FM and 6 AM preset stations. Stations can be preset manually or automatically.

    Note: Sub-program services of multicast stations are not included in the automatic memory search.

    Search Functions: The Alpine CDE-HD138BT offers various search functions to help you find the analog or digital AM/FM stations you are looking for.

    • Seek Modes: You can search for only digital AM/FM stations (Digital mode), or both analog & digital AM/FM stations (Hybrid mode).
    • Local/Distance Tuning: Local seek tuning lets you tune in only those radio stations with sufficiently strong signals for good reception. Distance seek tuning allows both strong and weak stations to be tuned.
    • Frequency Search: You can search for a radio station by its frequency, using the head unit's rotary encoder.

    Listening Modes: The head unit provides four reception methods in order to receive Digital & Analog AM/FM signals according to your own preference and signal strength.

    • Hybrid: Receives both digital and analog stations. If the digital signal is weak, this mode will switch to receive the analog radio signal automatically.
    • Digital: Receives only digital radio signals, even when the digital signal is weak.
    • Digital MC: Receives the digital radio signal while listening to a sub-program service of a multicast station.
    • Analog: Only receives the analog radio signal, even when the digital signal is strong.

    Live Mode: While receiving a live AM/FM broadcast, you can select an optimized receiving method according to your own preference and the signal strength.

    • Analog: While receiving a live broadcast, this unit will only receive the analog radio signal even when the digital signal can be received.
    • Digital: While receiving a live broadcast, this unit will keep receiving the digital radio signal even when the digital signal is week.
    • Listen: While receiving a live broadcast, this unit will use one of the Listening Modes (Hybrid, Digital, Digital MC, or Analog).

    FM Tone Quality: You can set your preferred tonal quality, when listening to FM analog radio stations. You can choose between HiFi (high-quality sound), Normal (standard setting), or Stable (noise control).

    SiriusXM Ready: The Alpine CDE-HD138BT comes ready for SiriusXM programming with access to XM and Sirius Satellite Radio stations. Thanks to its proprietary SiriusXM Connect port, you can add the optional SXV200V1 SiriusXM Connect tuner and receive more than 150 channels of exclusive programming directly from SiriusXM, via the "SiriusXM All Access" package (subscription required). Visit SiriusXM.com for a complete list of subscription options and channel guide. Additional features of the SXV200 SiriusXM Connect tuner include:

    • Text Display: Text information, such as the channel name, artist name, feature and song/program title is displayed on the in-dash receiver.
    • Search Function: You can search for SiriusXM programming content by Category or by Channel.
    • SiriusXM Presets: Feature 3 Satellite Radio preset bands. You can store 6 SiriusXM stations to each preset band (a total of 18).
    • Jump Recall: You can save your absolute favorite radio station and access it with the press of a single button for easy recall.
    • Instant Replay: Supports the SiriusXM Instant Replay function, so you can pause, rewind, and replay up to 30 minutes of live content. Listen to your favorite programming over again.
    • Game Alert: GameAlert will display an on-screen message if your favorite teams' games are being broadcast. Jump to that station with the push of a button so you can listen to the game play by play. You can also get the latest score updates while you are listening to other stations.
    • Song/Artist Alert: With Song/Artist Alert you can get notified when your favorite songs or artists are being broadcast on any SiriusXM station. With the push of a button, you can jump right to that broadcast and catch the songs you want to listen to.
    • iTunes Tagging: The iTunes Tagging feature lets you Tag songs (up to 50) you hear on SiriusXM and stores the info on your iPod/iPhone. The next time you connect your iPod/iPhone to iTunes, you will be able to preview your selections and then purchase and download them directly from iTunes.
    • Parental Lock: This function restricts the listening of channels for children of certain age levels and is protected by a 4-digit "lock-code".

    Note: SiriusXM Satellite Radio operates on XM Network. If you already have a Sirius Satellite Radio subscription, this radio can not be added as a discounted second unit. If you have an existing XM Satellite Radio subscription, you can add this unit as a discounted second unit.

    Built-in Bluetooth

    Bluetooth Technology (powered by Parrot): The Alpine CDE-HD138BT features built-in Bluetooth technology (v3.0), powered by Parrot. Parrot is the global leader in wireless devices for mobile phones, for expanded compatibility for many Bluetooth wireless technology enabled cell phones. The head unit's built-in Bluetooth allows you to make and receive phone calls wirelessly through the receiver; as well as stream music wirelessly from your smartphone to the head unit.

    Bluetooth Profiles: In order to use Bluetooth wireless technology, your phone must also be Bluetooth compatible and be able to interpret certain profiles. This unit is compatible with the following Bluetooth Profiles:

    • Hands-Free Communication: HFP (Hands Free Profile), HSP (Head Set Profile), OPP (Object Push Profile), PBAB (Phone Book Access Profile).
    • Audio Streaming: A2DP (Advanced Audio Distribution Profile), AVRCP (Audio/Video Remote Control Profile).

    Pairing: The Alpine CDE-HD138BT can be paired to up to five Bluetooth enabled mobile devices (only one device can be used at a time). Due to the differences in Bluetooth technology, some Bluetooth enabled devices may be incompatible, function improperly, or may not support all features when used with the Alpine CDE-HD138BT. Parrot software updates provide support for future phones.

    External Microphone with Noise Cancellation: The included external microphone (with visor-clip) allows you to speak to the other party on the telephone call hands-free, while the other party's voice is played through your car stereo speakers. The external microphone is tuned and engineered to reduce noise interference and feedback. This allows optimal placement in your car, for the best possible sound quality. You can adjust the microphone's volume level; and even mute the microphone, so your voice will not be heard by the caller. The external microphone measures 0.5625" (diameter) x 1.625" (deep); and features an attached 13' cable terminated by a right-angle male 3.5mm connector.

    Receiving Calls: The Alpine CDE-HD138BT provides a couple ways to answer your phone calls without picking up your mobile phone. Incoming calls are announced by a caller ring tone through your vehicle's speakers (music will be muted) & a Caller ID message across your Alpine head unit's display.

    • Manual Answer: Manually answer an incoming call by pressing the "Phone" button on your Alpine head unit.
    • Automatic Answer: Set the Alpine head unit to answer the incoming call automatically; when a call is received, it is answered automatically after approximately 5 seconds.
    • Call Waiting: If a second call is received during a current call, you can have the first caller wait momentarily while you take the second call. When you are finished with one call, you can switch to the other.

    Placing Calls: The Alpine CDE-HD138BT provides a variety of functions for placing a phone call without using your mobile phone. The Alpine CDE-HD138BT features full phone book access, call history, voice tag dialing, and redial with compatible phones.

    • Voice Dialing: If you have a voice-dial capable phone, you can dial a phone contact by simply speaking the name of your contact.
    • Phonebook (with ABC search): Up to 1,000 entries (5 telephone numbers for each name) can be downloaded from your compatible mobile phone. You can select the first 3 call letters (ABC) to search for a desired name in your phonebook.
    • Preset Dialing: You can assign phone numbers that you dial frequently to presets (1-6) for quick recall. You can assign up to six frequently called phone numbers. A total of 18 phone numbers can be stored in the preset memory (6 numbers for each mobile phone paired).
    • Call History: The 80 previously dialed, received, or missed numbers can be retrieved and dialed from memory.

    Call Switch: This function allows you to initiate the transfer of audio between your mobile phone and your car's speakers.

    Text Message Alert: The CDE-HD138BT can give you a notification on the display with a blinking mail icon indicator for 30 seconds while receiving a text message on your Bluetooth-enabled phone. The mail icon indicator will remain on if there is an unread message on a connected mobile phone. You must still read or create a text message from your mobile smartphone.

    Audio Streaming: The Alpine CDE-HD138BT can stream music from you Bluetooth A2DP/AVRCP mobile device. Not only can it control & stream your music through Bluetooth, it can process your music using its built-in DSP Sound Expansion to ensure you get the best sound. Basic playback functions include - Play, Pause, & Skip (Previous/Next). The head unit will also display your stored music's song information; such as Artist name & Song/Album title. The CDE-HD138BT also supports audio streaming of music apps on your Bluetooth-enabled smartphone, but without control or metadata. You will continue to use your Bluetooth enabled smartphone to view and control streaming music apps. When an incoming call or outgoing call is in progress from your Bluetooth enabled mobile phone, audio streaming will be paused so you can take your call. Once the call is finished, your streaming music will resume.

    Note: Bluetooth Firmware Update v01.27.00 is required for Bluetooth control and song information display from an Apple iOS 6.0+ device. 

    Bluetooth Sound Quality Adjustments: You can customize the sound of your Bluetooth hands-free experience to fit your own preferences. You can adjust the CDE-HD138BT's mic gain, phone output, & ring tone volume. If that's not enough, there are 5 sound quality settings to choose from to get the balance just right for you. This flexibility will make your phone calls a pleasurable experience.

    • Volume Adjustments: You can emphasize or weaken the volume level of phone call, the ring tone, and the microphone input to fit your own preference. The Phone Talk Level, Ring Tone, & Mic Gain are all adjustable between -5 to + 5 dB.
    • Sound Types: This unit provides 5 methods to improve the sound quality of your calls. You can choose the type according to your own preference - Type 1 (standard mode), Type 2 (enhances noise reduction), Type 3 (enhances echo-cancellation), Type 4 (enhances both noise reduction & echo cancellation), & Type 5 (weakens both noise reduction & echo-cancellation).

    Speaker Output: You can select which car speaker outputs the audio from your Bluetooth-enabled mobile phone/device.

    • All: The audio will be output from all of the speakers in the car
    • F-L: The sound is only output from the front left speaker.
    • F-R: The sound is only output from the front right speaker.
    • F-LR: The sound is output from the front left and front right speakers.

    Pandora App Control

    Pandora Internet Radio for your Android or BlackBerry: Pandora is the leading Internet Radio music service in the United States, giving people music they love anytime, anywhere, through personalized radio stations. The Alpine CDE-HD138BT CD receiver lets you playback and control the Pandora Internet Radio music service that is being streamed to your Android or BlackBerry smartphone. Your Android or BlackBerry smartphone will need an active Data Plan account with connection to the Internet via 3G, EDGE, or WiFi. In addition, you will need an active Pandora music service account.

    Pandora via Bluetooth: The Alpine CDE-HD138BT lets you playback and control Pandora Internet Radio streamed from your Android or BlackBerry smartphone, via Bluetooth (no hard-wired connection required). To access Pandora from the Alpine head unit, your Bluetooth-enabled Android or BlackBerry smartphone must have the latest version of the Pandora App from the Android Market or the BlackBerry App World. Your Android or BlackBerry smartphone must support A2DP, AVRCP, and SPP Bluetooth profiles. Pandora control via USB-connection is not available for Android or BlackBerry.

    Note: Access to the Pandora service will depend on the availability of a cellular and/or WiFi network for purposes of allowing your iPhone or smartphone to connect to the Internet. Pandora is not supported in Canada and only available in the United States.

    Pandora Control: The Alpine CDE-HD138BT will provide control over the Pandora music service streamed to your Bluetooth-enabled Android or BlackBerry smartphone. 

    • Station List: You can select Pandora stations from your Station List by date or alphabetically (A-Z).
    • New Station: Based on a currently playing track or artist, you can create a new station and save it to your Pandora account.
    • QuickMix: QuickMix allows you to listen to songs played on one or more Pandora stations in your Station List randomly. You will need to edit your QuickMix station selections on the phone before connection.
    • Skip Songs: You can skip song tracks within a station. You cannot skip back to a previous song. Pandora limits the number of skips allowed.
    • Thumbs Up/Down: You can give songs a thumbs up or thumbs down to help Pandora personalize stations to suit your preferences.
    • Bookmarking: The song or artist currently being played can be bookmarked & stored in your Pandora account.

    Information Display: The Alpine CDE-HD138BT will display Artist, Album, & Song information provided by the Pandora app on your Android or BlackBerry smartphone.

    USB/iPod/Aux Connectivity

    Front-Panel USB Port: The Alpine CDE-HD138BT features a front-panel USB (type-A) port, so you may connect a USB mass storage class memory device to this head unit. Your connected USB memory device may contain MP3 (8-320 kbps), WMA (32-192 kbps), or AAC (16-320 kbps) music files formatted in FAT 12/16/32. This unit will recognized up to 100 folders and 100 files per folder. ID3 tags (v1, v2) and WMA tags are supported; track title, artist name, and album name ID3/WMA tag data can be displayed. The head unit will play back files on a USB memory devices with the same controls and modes as playback of CDs containing MP3, WMA, and AAC audio files. USB portable audio players that can be charged via USB will be charged when plugged into the CD receiver's USB port (max. 1A), and the vehicle's ignition switch is set to ACC or On.

    Note: You can only play back non-copy protected MP3/WMA/AAC files.

    iPod/iPhone Direct Connection: You can connect your iPod or iPhone to the head unit's front-panel USB port using the Alpine KCU-445i iPod/iPhone cable (500KCU445i, sold separately) or the iPod dock-connector cable which came with your iPod/iPhone to get access to all of your iPod/iPhone's stored music, right from the head unit. If you have an iPod nano (7th gen), iPod touch (5th gen), or iPhone 5; use the Lighting-to-USB cable that came with your Apple device to connect to the head unit. The Alpine CDE-HD138BT offers audio playback, music navigation, information display, & charging of select iPod/iPhone models.

    iPod/iPhone Audio Playback (with DAC bypass): The Alpine CDE-HD138BT supports audio playback of music, podcast, and audiobook files stored on your iPod or iPhone; as well as music apps streamed to your iPod/iPhone. The USB connection allows your iPod/iPhone's large music libraries to be loaded instantly to the Alpine head unit and sound quality to be maximized through the head unit's 1-bit D/A converter (bypassing iPod/iPhone DAC), allowing for a Signal to Noise ratio up to 105dB.

    iPod/iPhone Control: Once your iPod/iPhone is connected, you get convenient control of your iPod/iPhone's music library from the head unit. You can also choose to control your iPod/iPhone from its clickwheel or touchscreen.

    • Head Unit: The Alpine CDE-HD138BT lets you navigate your iPod/iPhone's music library by Playlist, Artist, Album, Song, Genre, Composer, Podcast, or Audiobook. You can then search each category alphabetically (A-Z). For especially big music libraries, the Percentage Search function uses the head unit's preset buttons for quick jumps to specific parts of the a Category (Preset 1: 0% to 16%, Preset 2: 17% to 32%, Preset 3: 33% to 49%, Preset 4: 50% to 66%, Preset 5: 67% to 82%, Preset 6: 83% to 100% of the song library). The head unit also offers three Shuffle playback functions (All/Album/Category) and Repeat playback function (song).
    • iPod Passenger Control: In iPod Passenger Control mode, you can navigate the stored music on your iPod/iPhone from its clickwheel or touchscreen. You can also listen to your favorite music apps (such as Pandora, iHeartRadio, SiriusXM, Last.fm, Rhapsody, & Slacker) from your iPhone (iOS 3.0+) through the Alpine head unit and your vehicle's speakers, while controlling basic play back functions (such as Play/Pause & Previous/Next). You will continue to use your iPhone's touchscreen to navigate advance functions of your  musicapps. Not all apps will be compatible.

    Note: Access to your iPhone's downloaded applications will depend on the availability of a cellular and/or WiFi network for purposes of allowing your iPhone to connect to the Internet.

    iPod/iPhone Display: The Alpine CDE-HD138BT will display your iPod/iPhone's stored music file information in Head Unit or iPod Passenger Control mode. The head unit will display Track number, Elapsed playing time, Artist name, Song title, & Album label. The unit will not display music app information.

    iPod Charging: The head unit's USB connection provides 1A of current to power and charge your connected iPod/iPhone when your vehicle's ignition switch is set to the 'ACC' or 'On' position. This unit does not charge the iPad. If your iPod/iPhone has no initial battery charge, then the unit will not recognize it.

    iPod/iPhone Compatibility Chart: The Alpine CDE-HD138BT is "Made for iPod/iPhone" compatible and supports the following iPod/iPhone model features (as of 9/27/2012):

    Apple Device Generation Tested Version Media Type Control Type Display Type iTunes Tagging Charge
    Audio Video Head Unit iPod/iPhone Artist/Song Text Track Info
    iPhone 2G 3.1.3 Y N Y Y Y Y Y Y
    3G 4.2.1 Y N Y Y Y Y Y Y
    3GS 5.1.1 Y N Y Y Y Y Y Y
    4 6.0 Y N Y Y Y Y Y Y
    4S 6.0 Y N Y Y Y Y Y Y
    5 6.0 Y N Y Y Y Y Y Y
    touch 1st 2.2.1 Y N Y Y Y Y Y Y
    2nd 4.2.1 Y N Y Y Y Y Y Y
    3rd 5.1.1 Y N Y Y Y Y Y Y
    4th 6.0 Y N Y Y Y Y Y Y
    5th 6.0 Y N Y Y Y Y Y Y
    nano 1st 1.3.1 Y N Y N Y Y N Y
    2nd 1.1.3 Y N Y Y Y Y N Y
    3rd 1.1.3 Y N Y Y Y Y Y Y
    4th 1.0.4 Y N Y Y Y Y Y Y
    5th 1.0.2 Y N Y Y Y Y Y Y
    6th 1.1 PC Y N Y Y Y Y Y Y
    7th 1.2 Y N Y Y Y Y Y Y
    classic 80GB 1.1.2 Y N Y Y Y Y Y Y
    120GB 2.0.1 Y N Y Y Y Y Y Y
    160GB 2.0.4 Y N Y Y Y Y Y Y
    video 5th 1.3 Y N Y N Y Y N Y
    iPad 1 5.1.1 Y N Y Y Y Y Y N
    2 6.0 Y N Y Y Y Y Y N
    3 6.0 Y N Y Y Y Y Y N
    Note: Apple iPod/iPhone software updates may change functionality results. If you download a newer software version, you may need to reset the head unit and your iPod/iPhone to regain functionality. If this doesn't work, you may need to wait until a newer software update is available.

    Auxiliary Input: The unit is equipped with front-panel minijack (3.5mm) auxiliary input. You can input audio from an auxiliary source unit; such as a portable MP3 player. You can turn the Auxiliary Input on or off. In addition, you can change the name on the display to match the type of device connected to the front-panel input; Auxiliary, TV, DVD, Portable, or Game.

    Disc Playback

    Disc Compatibility: The unit features a single disc player that will playback CD-Audio, CD-Text, and finalized CD-R/CD-RW audio discs.

    MP3/WMA/AAC Playback: This unit can play CD-R, and CD-RW discs containing MP3, WMA, and AAC files recorded using the ISO 9660 Level 1 or Level 2 formats. MP3 files with bit rates from 8 kbps to 320 kbps, WMA files with bit rates from 48 kbps to 192 kbps, and AAC files with bit rates from 16 kbps to 320 kbps are supported. Up to a maximum of 255 folders and 510 files/folders can be read from one disc. ID3 tags v1 and v2, and WMA tags are supported; track title, artist name, and album name ID3 tag data can be displayed.

    Text/File/Folder Quick Search: When you are playing a disc with CD Text or ID3/WMA/AAC tags, you can easily search for a track, file, or folder by its title. Once you have activated the search mode, you can use the rotary encoder to quickly scan through the titles to locate the desired track. For discs without CD Text or ID3/WMA/AAC tags, searches are made using the track numbers associated with each song.

    Playback Modes: The Alpine CDE-HD138BT offers Repeat and Random playback modes.

    • Repeat: Repeat Play (repeats playback of current track/file), Folder Repeat (repeats only files in current folder).
    • Random: Random Play (all tracks/files on disc are played in random order), Folder Random (only files in current folder are played back in random order).

    Off Insert/Eject: A CD disc can be inserted or ejected with the power off. When a disc is inserted with the power off, the unit will automatically power up and begin playback.

    Auto Reload: When a CD is ejected and left sticking out of the CD slot for 20 seconds, the unit automatically reloads the CD to protect if from damage.

    Angle Mounting: For proper CD playback, Alpine recommends mounting the CDE-HD138BT no more that 35° above horizontal.

    Audio Section

    CEA-2006 Compliant: The specifications given by Alpine for the built-in amplifier comply with the CEA-2006 mobile amplifier power testing and measurement standards from the CEA (Consumer Electronics Association). All manufacturers who comply with the standard can display the CEA-2006 logo on their product.

    • CEA-2006 Power Rating: 18 watts x 4 channels (at 4 ohms, 20-20kHz, 1% THD)
    • Max Power Output: 50 watts x 4 channels

    6ch/4V Preouts: The CDE-HD138BT has three sets of 4-Volt RCA pre-outs (Front/Rear/Sub) for connection of external amplifiers. The unit's front and rear preamp output can be faded (front/rear), while the subwoofer preamp output is non-fading.

    Note: When an external amplifier is connected sound quality can be improved by stopping the power supply of the built-in amplifier.

    Subwoofer Control: When the non-fading subwoofer preamp output is activated, you can adjust the subwoofer's volume, low-pass filter, & phase.

    • Volume: There are two volume (system) modes for the unit's subwoofer output.
      • System 1: Subwoofer level changes according to the main volume setting.
      • System 2: Subwoofer level change is different from the main volume setting (0-15); even at low volume settings, the subwoofer is still audible.
    • Low Pass Filter: The unit's subwoofer output low-pass filter can be set to 60Hz, 80Hz, 120Hz, 160Hz, or Off (through).
    • Subwoofer Phase: The subwoofer output phase can be set to Normal (0°) or Reverse (180°).

    High Pass Filter: The Alpine head unit is equipped with a high-pass filter for its speaker-level output and front-channel preamp output (when activated). You can set the unit's high-pass filter to 60Hz, 80Hz, 120Hz, 160Hz, or Off (through).

    Equalizer: The CDE-HD138BT makes all of your music sound great with its extensive tuning capabilities. Choose from a 5-band parametric or 7-band graphic equalizer, to get the best from your car audio sound system. You can modify the EQ settings to create a response curve more appealing to your personal taste.

    • 5-Band Parametric EQ: The 5-band parametric EQ function gives you more flexibility in covering problem areas in the vehicle's response curve. 
      • Center Frequencies: You can select from the following center frequencies for each band; Band 1 (63Hz/80Hz/100Hz/200Hz), Band 2 (160Hz/250Hz/400Hz/630Hz/1.0kHz), Band 3 (630Hz/1.0Hz/1.6kHz/2.5kHz/4.0kHz), Band 4 (1.6kHz/2.5kHz/4kHz/6.3kHz/10.0kHz), Band 5 (10.0kHz/1.25kHz/16.0kHz/17.5kHz).
      • Bandwidth (Width Q): You can change the boosted bandwidth between Wide 1, Medium 2/3, or Narrow 4. A wider setting will boost a wide range of frequencies above and below the center frequency; while a narrower setting will boost only frequencies near the center frequency.
      • Level: Each center frequency can be set to a desired level, between -6 to +6 dB.
    • 7-Band Graphic EQ: The 7-band graphic EQ is simpler to set up and use.
      • Bands 1-7: Band 1 (80Hz), Band 2 (250Hz), Band 3 (500Hz), Band 4 (1.0kHz), Band 5 (4.0kHz), Band 6 (8.0kHz), Band 7 (16.0kHz).
      • Level: Each band (1-7) can be set to a desired level, between -6 to +6 dB.

    Note: You can store a combined 6 EQ presets for the 5-band and 7-band EQ.

    Media Xpander Pro: Alpine's exclusive Media Xpander Pro is engineered to bring out the musical details lost in compressed media, and it is adjustable per source to get the most out of your digital audio media. The Media Expander Pro makes vocals or instruments sound distinct regardless of the music source. The FM radio, CD, USB memory, and iPhone/iPod will be able to reproduce the music more clearly even in vehicles with a lot of road noise.

    Source Volume Level: The output level (+/-5dB) of each source can be individually adjusted. For example, if the Tuner level sounds lower than CD, its output can be adjusted without affecting the other sources.

    Interrupt Feature: When a device having the interrupt feature (such as a cellular telephone) is connected to the receiver, the audio signal will be automatically muted whenever the interrupt signal is received from the device. The supplied wiring harness contains a pink/black Interrupt lead that needs to be connected to the device's interrupt signal connection.

    Display Features

    Detachable Face: The unit features a single front loading CD face that detaches from the chassis to deter theft. The CD player comes supplied with a hard plastic face case to protect the detachable face when you have it off the chassis. A face-fixing screw is supplied for making the face non-detachable, if desired.  An optional soft face case (142DFC1X, sold separately) can also be purchased for this unit.

    1-Line LCD Display: This unit is equipped with a 1-Line white-backlit LCD, so you can easily view AM/FM stations, CD-Text, & ID-3 tag information.

    Text Display: Text information, such as the disc name and the track name, will be displayed if playing a CD text compatible disc. It is also possible to display the folder name, the file name,& the tag information, while playing a MP3/WMA/AAC disc or USB memory device.

    Text Scroll: This unit can scroll the disc & track names recorded on CD-Text disc, as well as the text information of MP3 files, folder names, and tags. There are two Text Scroll settings.

    • Auto: The CD text information, the information of folder and file names, and the tags are scrolled automatically.
    • Manual: The display is scrolled when a disc is loaded or when a track is changed.

    Auto Dimmer: This unit is equipped with an illumination lead; when the unit's dimmer mode is set to Auto and the illumination lead is connected to your vehicle's headlight circuit, the display and button illumination will dim to a fixed, preset level whenever the headlights are turned on. If preferred, you may choose the Manual dimmer mode setting, so the display and button illumination is dim at all times.

    Demo Mode: This unit has a demonstration feature for its display which can be turned On or Off in the menu.

    Remote Control

    Steering Wheel Remote Compatibility: The unit also features an OEM steering wheel remote control input on the rear of the unit that lets you keep your vehicle's factory radio steering wheel remote controls when used with the optional PAC SWI-RC Steering Wheel Control Interface Adapter (541SWIRC, sold separately); or the optional Metra ASWC Steering Wheel Control Interface Adapter (120ASWC, sold separately).

    Note: Please consult Crutchfield's Outfit My Car to see if your vehicle is compatible.

    Optional Wireless Remote: The Alpine CDE-HD138BT is wireless remote control ready. Simply add on the Alpine RUE-4202 IR remote (500RUE4202, sold separately) to make it even easier to control the head unit's functions.

     
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    Alpine CDE-HD138BT Reviews

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    3 out of 5

    cde-hd138bt has great sound, terrible bluetooth Pandora

    Written By Rod-Man, Bossier City, LA on Sunday, April 28, 2013
     
    I've had this radio for just about a year now, decided to give at least some credit where credit was due. I purchased this radio mainly for the Bluetooth functions, with the hands-free phone features #1 on the list. It's mostly hands free, it takes a 2-button press to actually make a call, but zero hands to answer (if you have it set up to auto answer). Awesome sound! Great mic, everyone I've spoken to says it is absolutely clear on their end. On the down side, and it's a fairly hefty downside, is Pandora via Bluetooth. What a pain. It is relatively well-documented online, and there doesn't seem to be a firmware update to try to remedy this at all (as of April, 2013). When it does connect, it is GREAT. The alternative is to connect a 3.5" cable from my phone (Samsung Admire, Gingerbread 2.3) to the aux input on the radio. Thanks, but no thanks. I also agree with other reviews, it was a bit more than I wanted to spend, but it had all the features I wanted under one roof, so I bit the bullet and took the plunge. Was it worth it? Yes, but had I known about the Pandora/BT issues, I would have chosen something else. The BT connection to play my music stored on the phone connects EVERY time, which is great, but I don't listen to it that regularly. Yes, buttons are small, time does not display unless unit it on, and you can't change the display color, but it doesn't matter to me. Overall, an excellent purchase, especially if you can live without BT Pandora.
    Pros:
    Great sound from my stock 2003 Crown Vic speakers! Hands-free phone functions, removable faceplate.
    Cons:
    Bluetooth Pandora, yucky icky!! Pricey when I got it.
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    4 out of 5

    Alpine CDE-HD138BT

    Written By Steven G, Sulphur La on Thursday, April 25, 2013
    Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
     
    Excellent over all. Browsing files on USB is hard to get used to, but that's , my only complaint.
    Pros:
    Lots of features,3 pair of preamp outputs, USB in the front, superb Sound quality.
    Cons:
    Maneuvering through folders is hard to get used to.
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    4 out of 5

    Review

    Written By Joe S, Wichita, KS on Sunday, March 31, 2013
    Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
     
    The Alpine CDE-HD138BT has many features like HD radio and SiriusXM together in on package. The sound quality is crystal clear however lacks crossover control and display options. The bright blue appearance really clashes with most vehicles and cannot be changed to a different color. The buttons are small difficult to press. The characters on the display are limited, they don't show the entire name if it is lengthy which makes the scroll feature worthless. If not for the HD radio and the high sound quality I would not own an Alpine HD138BT. There is little cool about it.
    Pros:
    Great sound quality. Ease of installation.
    Cons:
    The buttons are tiny to press. The display is illuminated only in bright blue, it can't be changed. Doesn't have subwoofer crossover control. The receiver is pricy.
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    5 out of 5

    Alpine CDE_HD138BT Car Radio

    Written By lesson, Lancaster, SC on Monday, March 11, 2013
    Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
     
    This radio met all of my needs and expectations. Everything I needed to install radio was in the kit. I did not have to purchase anything extra. Installation was no more than 1 hour. The sound quality was better than my old factory radio even with the same speakers.
    Pros:
    Excellent Styling Ease of installation Great Audio Nice Design
    Cons:
    None
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    5 out of 5

    Great buy

    Written By Clay, Pittsburgh, pa on Wednesday, March 06, 2013
    Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
     
    Made the stock speakers in the car sound great. 2nd one I bought for now, both cars! Fairly easy install, just wish there was a better paper manual. Not very flashy but you buy this for the music not the look. Great buy!
    Pros:
    The sound
    Cons:
    Limitations of a one line display, no flashy features like color changes, etc... But if you want that go to Walmart.
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    5 out of 5

    BEST BANG FOR THE BUCK!

    Written By alpinefreak, Sandwich Illinois on Tuesday, March 05, 2013
    Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
     
    All in all, great deck. A little worried of durability, seems they took a step back with the build quality of the face plate. Feels cheap. Running a HTC one s for Pandora, runs smoothly. I would say over all worth the money.
    Pros:
    4 volt preouts make the deck 7 band eq big plus And of coarse Bluetooth
    Cons:
    Face seems fragile Muting???
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    5 out of 5

    Awesome Deck!

    Written By Jim, Ma on Saturday, February 23, 2013
    Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
     
    Excellent deck! Sounds great and the 5 band eq lets you really customize how it sounds!
    Pros:
    Has everything
    Cons:
    Haven't found any other than the cost
    1 out of 1 people found this helpful
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    5 out of 5

    Best Bang for the Buck

    Written By John C, Park Ridge, IL on Saturday, February 09, 2013
    Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
     
    I will address 2 criticisms I have read in reviews about this unit. Firstly, audio quality. When I first powered it up, I was sick as it sounded worse than my OEM unit. Way too much bass and midrange. Playing with the basic tone controls did nothing. When I finally figured out how to access the audio setup menu (press and hold the audio button) I got into the EQ section. It looks complex at first, but for me I quickly discovered that all of the 5 bands were set to wide mode. When I was trying to adjust the treble in the basic tone controls, I was actually boosting the midrange and high bass as well. I set the 4th and 5th bands to narrow (from wide), and the effect was dramatic. Really excellent sounding. Completely different unit. That is my only real gripe with the unit ids the EQ could be a lot simplier to set up.

    The second thing I read was that the display was too bright for night driving. There is a dimming function which can be set manually or automatically. No levels of brightness; just full on or dim. I set it to auto, and tried it out during daylight as well as night. It is a little brighter at night than my OEM unit, but I did not find it objectionable. I would have liked to have some other colors available other than blue and white, but it works and looks cool.

    Bluetooth interface with my Droid Bionic is flawless. Calls sound crystal clear and no trouble pairing and repeat connecting. BT audio streaming is flawless.
    Pros:
    Feature rich. HD Tuner awesome. Very flexible in set up. Audio quality stunning, but you absolutely must spend a little time setting up the EQ first. Bluetooth with Droid Bionic flawless. Buttons solid with positive clicks.
    Cons:
    A little complex at first, but after an hour or so of playing with it, it quickly becomes intuitive. EQ must be adjusted to improve sound quality, and the EQ is unnecessarily complex. Only Blue/white display color.
    7 out of 7 people found this helpful
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    5 out of 5

    Buy it

    Written By Crash, Guntersville, AL on Thursday, January 24, 2013
    Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
     
    In a nutshell, if you're on the fence, buy it

    If you have a budget and you're trying to work in a head unit and some decent speakers, quit researching and just buy this head unit. Put in some inexpensive replacement speakers (even from Walmart, if necessary). Then later, after you've saved a little more cash, come back and get some rockin' speakers.

    The unit is highly configurable and pretty much intuitive to use. It sounds great even with cheap speakers. The EQ settings make it easy to adjust the sound to fit my vehicle. I can switch over to the Graphic EQ if I want to get a little more control but the presets do just fine. HD radio comes in beautifully and I live in a fringe area (more than 50 miles away from HD transmitters). When I'm in the low-lying areas, HD goes away but reception is still spot-on. I would like to be able to adjust the HD volume separately from the analog volume,but meh.

    The Bluetooth features are great! Sound quality on the phone is outstanding. People don't even realize I'm on Bluetooth and when I tell them I am talking through the radio connection they are simply amazed. Connection is a bit quirky on Pandora (with my Android) but once established it rocks on just fine. You even get all the Pandora controls through the radio (thumbs up, thumbs down, skip, change channel, etc.). You could also listen to Pandora, iHeart, or your MP3 playlist on the BT Audio as well.

    I am well pleased and may even be a complete Alpine loyalist from now on!
    Pros:
    Sound Quality Power Easily Configured Bluetooth
    Cons:
    Unable to adjust HD radio volume independently of analog radio volume Doesn't come with every car you buy.
    3 out of 3 people found this helpful
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    4 out of 5

    Wow!!!

    Written By Bozman, WA on Thursday, January 10, 2013
     
    It was time to upgrade, so I picked up this badboy after a couple months of research. I can't stand low quality sound. With today's toys it seems that bluetooth, Mp3, etc is the thing but I still wanted to play a CD. Of course there is a monsterous difference between the 2 in SQ. Alpine did a very good job in fixing that. It doesn't matter what's played, it all sounds pretty good. My old head unit was 8 years old so being able to pair my S3 with the head unit was a huge plus for me. No strings attached!!! Works awesome!!!! I run external amps as well. All the adjustability is there that you need. High pas, low pass, sub control functions work very well. The EQ will take some time to dial in but it's well worth it. Some reviews didn't like that, but with an audiophile type head unit, I'm not sure what they expected. A very wide variety of options await you during this process to either take it to the next level, or just tweek some problem areas. I love that you can set 6 preset EQ set ups as well. I've yet to have any issues with the bluetooth and probably won't use it to its "full" potential so my thoughts on that are very limited. Overall, this is an excellent choice if you are looking for a higher end head unit. No too pricey but also not made cheap. Sometimes you get what you pay for and I can say that for what I paid, it has been worth every penny thus far.
    Pros:
    EQ function A+ for sure Bluetooth options, especially with streaming music Sound Quality Solid build
    Cons:
    EQ: For the plug and play user, this will either be a useless function or aggrivate the daylights out of you Color change for backround Set up process: It will take you a while
    1 out of 1 people found this helpful
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    2 out of 5

    I really wanted to like this unit.

    Written By Bob B, New York on Friday, January 04, 2013
    Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
     
    The Alpine HU has lots of nice features that I really wanted, like built in Bluetooth, USB audio, HD radio. All of these features worked well and were easy to setup. I really liked having them, however there were some very significant drawbacks to the unit that were deal breakers to me, ultimately causing me to return it: 1) Not compatible with my car's dimmer circuit. The unit's illumination is either "on" or "really on" and both settings were distracting at night. 2) The pre-amp outputs didn't integrate into my car's factory Bose amplifier very well. This is partly because the Bose amplifier inputs in my car require a differential (balanced) input, but the HU does not provide this option. It also was very susceptible to alternator noise. I eventually solved both problems by purchasing additional components. 3) Whenever changing audio sources, radio stations or even tracks, the HU produces a very loud and annoying "thump". 4) I could have lived with the drawbacks above but in the end this unit did not sound as good as the 15 year old factory radio that it replaced, despite 2 weeks of fiddling with EQ settings. It might be a good unit for a complete rebuild including new amps and a dedicated sub, but I'm not doing that.
    Pros:
    Lots of easy-to-use features.
    Cons:
    Didn't sound as good as what it replaced.
    4 out of 6 people found this helpful
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    4 out of 5

    Apline HD138BT

    Written By Bob, Yonker, NY on Tuesday, December 18, 2012
     
    Replaced my 2012 Honda "premium" head unit. Better sound quality & power.
    Pros:
    Sound quality
    Cons:
    Visability is not great, and punching the small buttons is cumbersome, but granted I am used to an OEM with large dials etc. Clock does not show time unless unit is on...did I not wire it correctly?, possible I guess. Overall, I like it. I bought a $55 clock to mount on dash.
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    5 out of 5

    Excellent Receiver and great price

    Written By Jason, Gaithersburg, MD on Friday, December 14, 2012
    Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
     
    It is really a nice unit and given how much I paid for the last receiver I purchased - maybe 20 years ago - it is an unbelievably low price for all that it offers. You can figure out much by just playing around with it. The manual that comes with it only covers some of the various things you will want to do, but there is a more detailed owner's manual on CD. Of course, if you want to actually try some of the things that you read about on the CD, you'll have to make notes, print it out, or bring a laptop into the car with you. Having an HD tuner in the car is amazing. It is absolutely free of static. If you are listening to news broadcasts, it is like having the anchor in the car with you. Same for the bluetooth capability and phone calls. Crystal clear.
    Pros:
    HD, bluetooth, USB, CD, ease of use, color and styling
    Cons:
    You can't have everything, but if there was one thing I would cite as a con it would be the knob and the fact that it is in the wrong place. It is used for many things and when used, you end up blocking the display with your hand. This might not be a problem if the unit is installed low in your dash, but if it is pretty high up your line of site is likely to be obscured.
    2 out of 2 people found this helpful
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    5 out of 5

    Alpine makes great stuff

    Written By Anonymous, Newfoundland, PA on Tuesday, December 04, 2012
    Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
     
    Since I replaced a CDE-102 with this unit in my 2005 Subaru Outback, install was just a matter of unplugging and replugging. And adding the mic. I already have an Alpine KTP-445U "Power Pack" and Alpine speakers. It's all Alpine and it sounds great.
    Pros:
    Bluetooth was not a problem with my droid. I was glad for that, because that is why I upgraded from the CDE-102.
    Cons:
    Not really a con, but my lighting in the car is red and the Alpine is blue. Would have been nice, but I don't really have a problem with it.
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    5 out of 5

    Heck of a start!

    Written By wester, peoria,il on Saturday, December 01, 2012
    Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
     
    This is really my first higher end receiver, but it definitely suits my needs. Since this is only the beginning device of what is soon to be part of hopefully a amazing sound system in my car, I am already anxious to build a rolling live concert! Right of the bat, the blue tooth feature was welcomed, I use a samsung galaxy 1 and the BT works fine with it..(someone else said it only synced with their I-phone) although the aux. and USB ports also come in handy when BT is not available on whatever external devices im using. Im not a fan of all sort of crazy features and this receiver is more my style..not too fancy, but definitely doesnt lack. i currently only have factory Infinity speakers in my car...i could tell the difference without even adjusting anything!...Im no sound pro so i cant say its the best for adjusting sound quality in itself, but as i was told by my installer that this puppy is totally capable of performing well in all environments and sound levels...Honestly the Sirius XM being included was my main draw, being that it was in a single DIN receiver. so as far as regular every day use goes i would surely say buy it if you are looking to spend this much!...this was a mumbled mess of a review, but im just saying i LOVE this thing!
    Pros:
    BT BT BT!! stream from your phone or anything BT.....front aux and USB...Pandora....plenty of output...lots of sub adjustment settings..
    Cons:
    none for me..im a simple man
    1 out of 1 people found this helpful
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    4 out of 5

    great head

    Written By section 8, philly on Wednesday, November 28, 2012
    Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
     
    this is a great head unit. i can really hear the difference over a cheaper, 2v pre out model, paired up with twisted pair rca's, i get a really clean signal and can turn system up much louder
    Pros:
    great price for sound quality, ease of use, equalizer, versatility. came with hands free BT kit
    Cons:
    don't know how it works for the droid, but the blue tooth will only sync with the iphone, you cant control the phone from the head (with music) like you can with a usb connection. also no data is displayed from BT iphone such as artist, album etc. everything must be controlled from your iphone, in most states being on your phone is illegal
    2 out of 2 people found this helpful
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    5 out of 5

    Alpine delivers as expected

    Written By Mark N, Lynden, WA on Monday, November 26, 2012
    Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
     
    I am happy with my purchase of the Alpine CDE-HD138BT. This was a replacement for my factory Monsoon HU that I have lived with the past twelve years in my 2000 VW Jetta TDI. Crutchfield made the transition very easy with adapter wiring and antenna harnesses along with crystal clear instructions. This unit has very intuitive controls, and something for everyone, from the novice to advanced user. One thing I particularly enjoy is the blue tooth audio streaming feature. It takes less than ten seconds for my phone to be detected by the HU when I get into my car. I use Google Play to stream my audio collection and it works perfectly with the blue tooth streaming. I can even pause and skip forward/back from the HU without even touching my phone. Before I purchased this HU, I read as many of the reviews that I could find both positive and negative. I have to say, I haven't found any validity to the negative reviews and can only speak to my positive experience. My only advice would be to do your homework and see if it will meet your needs before you purchase. I have always had people rave about my old factory system and this beats it hands down. The fidelity of this unit is impressive and really breathed new life into my much loved TDI. Thanks Alpine for a great product and of course Crutchfield.
    Pros:
    Price for what you get in return: An attractive high fidelity HU, well thought out menu's and controls, blue tooth audio streaming and phone connection, pandora, audio tweakablity to get just the right sound, scalability, ease of use.
    Cons:
    None experienced.
    4 out of 4 people found this helpful
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    4 out of 5

    It's an Alpine! You buy one simply for the great sound!

    Written By Southernreign, Charlotte, NC on Thursday, November 22, 2012
     
    I bought this for my 2010 Corolla S which had a painful stock non-JBL sound system. My upgrade process has been slow and painful. I originally first upgraded the 6 speakers to a four speaker Infinity speaker Kappa system. (left the tweeters out) Great improvement, but bass was good and purereally lacking. I left the stock HUD and was able to play the radio MAX out with occassional clipping (NOT GOOD), I then decided to spend ALOT of time custom wiring a Alpine 300 amp to the stock radio. It sounded much better, bass was much better, still missing something. Now I could clearly hear the unclean sound the AMP was producing. I looked into all different type of radio, single din and double. I ended up choosing this for ALL the features it included, The main thing was its ability to play different types of music files. When I kicked this on. WOW! The sound was great! What a difference. It is amazing what a difference the HD radio makes too. It really increases the frequency range and stereo separation. There is SOOOOO much I have yet to learn to do with this. The Kappa speakers REALLY REALLY REALLY rock. People complain about the lack of bass. I see why... but, add an AMP, and they come alive like you can not believe! You can acually feel the air move in the car from the bass! I am very happy with this radio... I think if I were to do it again, I would buy the higher end double din touch screen Alpine without the GPS though. All that said, I am a happy camper with my purchase.
    Pros:
    Sounds is pure and natural. Lots of ways to customize
    Cons:
    Not the best looking radio. I like the ALPINE multimedia player's look better. Menu is really hard to get use to. Buttons are small. Can not change Alpine display color. Blue is only choice
    2 out of 2 people found this helpful
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    5 out of 5

    Very Good Radio

    Written By Matt C., Leesburg, Va on Monday, November 19, 2012
    Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
     
    The radio provides great sound quality and service.
    Pros:
    Removable faceplate and bluetooth.
    Cons:
    cost
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    5 out of 5

    Elated

    Written By Anonymous, Redlands, CA on Friday, September 14, 2012
    Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
     
    Just what we've come to expect from Alpine over the years. I replaced a new model Kenwood that had severe Bluetooth issues with this Alpine and I wish I had bought this first. The menu is a little tricky but that's to be expected with all of the adjustable parameters this unit has in regards to sound.
    Pros:
    Everything!
    Cons:
    Tricky menu, takes a little familiarization. Nothing negative.
    3 out of 3 people found this helpful
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    2 out of 5

    If you have an iPhone, look for a different unit

    Written By sdBill, San Diego on Friday, August 31, 2012
     
    Time to start looking at other manufacturers. This is the third Alpine unit I've owned and although they make a good product, they always seem to fall short of offering a truly great product. Last year's models had the USB connection in the rear or the unis, which allowed for wiring a remote USB connection where USB devices could be kept out of sight. This year, the USB connection is in the front of the unit, which is convenient, but why not offer both? This unit offers a lot of options for audio sources, HD Radio, Disk, iPod, Pandora, Bluetooth Audio, satellite, etc. However, I only use three of these yet I have to navigate through the entire array to get from iPod to HD radio. How about letting me disable what I don't use. OK, enough whining. My biggest beef with this unit is that the iPhone interface blows! I can't speak to the Droid interface since I haven't ventured down that path...yet. iPod/iPhone functionality is intermittent at best. When I'm connected through USB everything works fine until I turn off the ignition. When I turn it back on, the iPhone plays for second then goes silent. I have the unplug the USB and plug it back in to get it working again. Bluetooth will work fine for a week or so then I get a 'NO UNIT' message and have to re-pair the device. Finally, when the unit is powered down and the ignition is on and I try to make a phone call, the unit wakes up and forces me to use hands free.
    Pros:
    Easy to install. Provides a lot of flexibility in audio settings.
    Cons:
    Bluetooth intermittently disconnects and and must be re-paired with iPhone. Even after pairing the hands free phone works, but no Bluetooth audio. When using USB, iPhone
    8 out of 10 people found this helpful
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    5 out of 5

    I love this unit!

    Written By Taylor H, San Jose, CA on Monday, August 20, 2012
    Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
     
    I'll keep this short and and sweet. This unit does everything and very well. It's pretty easy to use (especially if you at least briefly skim the manual.) I love this receiver and it does almost everything I wanted and well.

    Some of my favorite features: Bluetooth streaming audio audio and calling from the iPhone 4S The hands free mic is VERY good and clear. Plays MP3s (WMA, and AAC) directly from a USB thumb drive.

    Features I don't:: This doesn't have a "loudness" setting.. I wanted this specifically for low volume listening. It includes graphic and parametric equalizers which is probably the reason Loudness was excluded, but would have liked the convenience of a simple "loudness" setting.

    I'm not using an amp, and I'm using 4 Alpine speakers. I'm considering adding a Alpine KTP-445U "Power Pack" for better speaker performance at low volumes though with the standard receiver's power the performance is still great especially at higher volumes.
    Pros:
    Does everything, sounds amazing.
    Cons:
    No "loudness" setting, but has parametric and graphic equalizers.
    4 out of 4 people found this helpful
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    5 out of 5

    Sweet

    Written By Noel, Maine on Thursday, August 16, 2012
    Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
     
    As always Alpine does not dissapoint Just installed it yesterday. Head unit works awesome music sounds clean and the bluetooth is crystal clear probably one of the best Alpine decks i've owned. Had a little trouble with the steering wheel installation but called Crutchfield tech support at like 8:00 am and tech support took care of me. If the government ran this country the way Crutchfield runs there business we would be the envy of the world again.
    Pros:
    Everything Alpine is the Best.
    Cons:
    My only peeve is the brightness of the deck Alpine why dont you add that blackout display mode on all your decks Seriously. Don't any of your product testers sit in the labs and test these displays for night driving ?
    3 out of 3 people found this helpful
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    5 out of 5

    Alpine Stereo Receiver

    Written By LLBryant50, Petersburg, Va on Wednesday, August 08, 2012
    Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
     
    I would recommend this receiver to anyone, was very easy to install with the items crutchfield sent, sounds real nice, a little trickie on setup, instruction book not very clear but over all I figure it out, would buy this item again, blue tooth works very well easy to use, HD Radio tuner is great, Sirius/Xm install easy,
    Pros:
    GREAT SOUND!
    Cons:
    instruction Booklet needs improving!
    3 out of 3 people found this helpful
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    5 out of 5

    Alpine CDE-138HDBT

    Written By KyleB, Fort myers, FL on Tuesday, July 31, 2012
    Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
     
    I have to say this is probably one of the best or is the best HU Ive owned. I've own: Kenwood KIV-BT901 Parrot Asteroid Alpine CDE-123 Kenwood Excelon KDE-X996 JVC Arsenal KD-A95BT JVC Kameleon Pioneer MVH-P7300 Pioneer MVH- P8300BT The point is this is the first HU. I have actually written a review about. The HU has amazing features with the Bluetooth streaming. It's easy to connect. I'm using an IPhone 4s. Bring it right up and sync as soon as i get in the truck. Yes it may take a second to sync, but which HU out there doesn't. The brightness has been the same for the past couple years now with alpine. You can change it but it doesn't really help much. I think personal it add to the overall appearance of the HU. The "MX" feature with Bluetooth increase the sound quality of the stream with 3 different opinion, and a 4th custom opinion to tune the way you like. The Subwoofer Feature with the 4 volt Pre-out gives my Sub a great range of tuning. Ive used an SMD DD-1 on the HU it doesn't clip at all 35/35. Also the HU has easy pre-set radio station and the HD radio works Great. Even thou i barely use to lol. The Pandora radio app work great with a thumps up, and thumps down button on the HU it self. Only bad thing I can think of it the one line display, but hey press on button and see the time and anything else. Alot of people say its hard to get use to the controls of the radio or navigating through the features.
    Pros:
    No. It's just like anything else you have to get use to it. One of the thinks i really liked about it was in my truck i have a small Radio space so there isn't much room for air flow to cool the HU, But the Alpine has a built in cooling Fan. With really help, cause i have had several HU from Top brand name companies burn up All In All i think it a great HU.
    Cons:
    Has every feature you can think of, with the top of the line quality. The HU look great in any vehicle. Ive had several compliments on it. All the feature do as they are suppose to, and work great. If your wanting to use Bluetooth like i was looking for. This HU is the way to go. The Bluetooth streaming is amazing. Along with all the tuning features just under the Bluetooth settings DEFINITELY recommend to a friend.
    5 out of 5 people found this helpful
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    5 out of 5

    Alpine CDE-138BT

    Written By Anonymous, Ladson, SC on Saturday, June 30, 2012
    Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
     
    This is by far the best single din head unit I have ever had. I have. Had a lot of car stereos and have installed a lot also. This is a must buy!!!
    Pros:
    It's Alpine!! Enough said.
    3 out of 3 people found this helpful
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    5 out of 5

    Alpine CDE-HD138BT

    Written By AGH, Vadnais Heights, MN on Sunday, June 17, 2012
    Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
     
    This unit blows away anything else in it's price range and most units that are more expensive. Audio quality is awesome and the BT phone feature worked perfectly right out of the box in my F250 Diesel. No audio adjustment needed. Very impressive.
    Pros:
    Audio quality and BT phone feature.
    Cons:
    Can be cumbersome to program and use for the novice.
    3 out of 3 people found this helpful
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    5 out of 5

    best stereo in the market

    Written By mustanger351, bay city, michigan on Friday, June 15, 2012
    Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
     
    Best bang for the buck. Don't look any further.
    Pros:
    Love every thing about this unit, 100% perfect
    Cons:
    Non
    3 out of 4 people found this helpful
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    5 out of 5

    Alpine CDE-HD138BT

    Written By Matt, Jacksonville, FL on Saturday, May 26, 2012
    Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
     
    .This head unit is really nice. Once you get acclimated to the Alpine controls, it has great sound quality and many useful features.
    Pros:
    RDS, IPOD USB, BLUETOOTH, HD RADIO
    Cons:
    It took me about a week to get adjusted to the Alpine features and use.
    5 out of 5 people found this helpful
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    4 out of 5

    Alpine hd138bt

    Written By Josh, Bethlehem, PA on Wednesday, May 09, 2012
    Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
     
    I love this HU and the fact that I can control my iPhone from the phone or the HU. No issue with the sound quality, and HD radio is HD radio...your location and environment is going to determine your signal strength. I have no need for alternate colors, but Alpine really needs to work on their "ease of use". It is very difficult to manage through all of the menus and settings. I like that there are separate settings for each device, and that you can shut off the device menus that you don't use, but come on....no permanent clock in view? The BT phone feature works extremely well, and again, the separate settings for devices comes in handy here. You can manage the volume of the phone conversation and ringtone separately from each other and from say your iPod music! Overall I love this HU and would buy it again, but be warned. You have some studying to do before you will be able to use it to it's full potential.
    Pros:
    individual settings for each connected device, BT phone and streaming sound terrific, connects quickly to phone ...faster than 30 sec for me, almost instantly, SQ is Alpine standard, Like having the HD tuner imbedded, though I don't get a lot in my area, when I do, it sounds amazing though.
    Cons:
    cycling through ipod/iphone listings is a pain, phone book is a pain (though better if you use the preset favorites), menus in general are a pain to use. The display info is too restrictive. At least have the clock always present, but really, we should at least get a scroll of artist, album song, if they aren't all going to be visible at the same time. At least that would eliminate the need to keep hitting the view button 10 times!
    7 out of 7 people found this helpful
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    5 out of 5

    Alpine CDE-HD138BT

    Written By Daniel A, Yonkers,NY. on Sunday, May 06, 2012
    Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
     
    Could not ask for more, Excellent receiver,has all the features i was looking for. Takes a little time to fully understand how it works,but its coming.
    3 out of 3 people found this helpful
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    3 out of 5

    I wanted to love it...

    Written By Rob Blash, NJ on Sunday, April 29, 2012
    Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
     
    Being a long time Alpine fan I didn't hesitate to go with my trusted brand when it came time for a new HU. My primary needs are BT audio and XM radio, both of which work flawlessly. I'm glad to have the USB input (rear would have been nice) & Aux input but I haven't tried either. The HU pairs with my phone (Samsung Galaxy Nexus) within 30 seconds of powering up and the controls for BT streaming work quickly and smoothly. The XM controls have improved from past, so I was glad to see that. Also the footprint of the new sat tuner is much smaller making installation easier. I tested the Pandora controls briefly but they seemed clumsy. I didn't bother trying again (seems easier to play Pandora through BT streaming) so take that FWIW. The HU controls & menus seem a more refined than past units, though the awkwardness of exploring settings on an Alpine is still present. The sound quality is great. I'm not longer running components and subs (OK, I'm running stock speakers) but there is still a vast improvement. I kind of wish I hadn't sold the rests of my system so I could hear what this HU can really crank out. So why don't I love it? See my cons. The display options and button colors are complete deal breakers. My Altima has orange dash lighting and no separate clock. It drives me crazy to push neon blue buttons while I'm cycling through the song title and the current time. For the price I shouldn't have to settle for these minor annoyances so it's most likely going back.
    Pros:
    -BT audio works great, sounds good through stock speakers. -XM radio works great, more control options than in the past. -BT calls sound good on both ends of the line.Voice dialing is your best option, getting through the phone book isn't easy. -Build quality is solid, buttons have a nice feel. -Overall it's a nice unit but its missing some elementary things that should be present at this price.
    Cons:
    -Info display: there is a single line, that is all. You can't see artist/song title & the clock side by side. Choose one or the other. That's a big deal breaker when your car doesn't have a separate clock. My older Alpine units always had multi line displays with several different views. -Buttons: neon blue, that's your only choice. Come on Alpine, why did you get rid of the custom button colors? It's been an option on all of my past units, you could have at least gone neutral on the color.
    4 out of 4 people found this helpful
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    5 out of 5

    Alpine CDE-HD138BT

    Written By ULUZ2A6, Las Vegas on Friday, April 20, 2012
    Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
     
    Well worth the long wait. By far the easiest unit I have operated. The owners manual will never be touched. The sound is quite bright, but some minor tweaking even it all out. Bluetooth is blazing fast for audio stored on phone or Pandora. USB on front will keep my from ever using another disc! Can't believe its the top model and under $300.
    Pros:
    ease of use.
    Cons:
    A bit bright.
    6 out of 6 people found this helpful
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    5 out of 5

    Alpine hd138bt to replace kenwood kdc bt948hd

    Written By Tony, Anaheim Ca on Friday, April 13, 2012
     
    I have been using this unit for a week with the bluethtooth, HD radio , streaming music through bluethtooth and its been fantastic. I dont know what the user below is complaining about the sound configuration is easy and sounds great and he should know all HD radios have to adjust because the HD signal is not everywhere, he must work for kenwood haha. I bought this alpine unit to replace my kenwood kdc bt948hd-which doesnt stream music through bluethtooth and had the worst radio preset system. Buying this alpine was a great choice excellent biuld quality. Im using it with polk mm6501 components and an alpine f300 amp, great sound!
    Pros:
    Hd radio Streaming music through bluetooth 4volt preamp output 4volt preouts
    Cons:
    Non
    7 out of 7 people found this helpful
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    5 out of 5

    Awesome Bluetooth

    Written By Cougfan, Seattle Wa on Thursday, April 12, 2012
     
    Put this in my SUV and the 10 stock speaker sound like aftermarket. The bluetooth feature works so well I dont need to plug into the USB. I have never had a drop in reception yet but have yet to road trip through the mountains. Couldnt be happier sound.
    Pros:
    Sound Quality Bluetooth
    Cons:
    A little more than some with same features
    5 out of 5 people found this helpful
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    1 out of 5

    Alpine CDE-HD138BT

    Written By steve, Des Plaines ,IL on Friday, April 06, 2012
    Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
     
    Just replaced a kenwood x595 for this at 2 times the price . hated the dumb joystick and radio was worthless on the kenwood also would shut off on its own . Finally got the new alpine and does not even match the SQ of the Kenwood . The low and midrange are not even there , the highs are very bright . The EQ is a pain and sounds better without it on , The bright blue light does not match 75% of all vehicles on the road . HD radio goes in and out , it's useless ! The only thing i like is the build quality and rubber coated volume contorl . I am buying the New Kenwood X596 much better then the x595 .
    Pros:
    Build quality
    Cons:
    too much to list , not worth the high price tag for the name Alpine .
    5 out of 27 people found this helpful
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    5 out of 5

    Great high-end receiver

    Written By ShawnH, Danielson, CT on Monday, April 02, 2012
    Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
     
    I've waited WEEKS for this model! I bought this head unit on March 24th, and it arrived just 3 days later! Crutchfield supplied a *perfect* dash kit for my Corolla S, and a nice wiring harness as well. I've installed a few aftermarket stereos in the past, and the install for this puppy was a breeze.

    The long microphone cord was a life-saver when wiring up the hands-free kit behind the dash and up the sail panel. I realized my phone callers were saying my voice was too quiet, but I easily found a function to increase the MIC gain to +4. The bluetooth A2DP streaming works great with my WP7 smartphone. It sounds much better than I was expecting, and I actually couldn't tell that I wasn't playing a CD. The wireless streaming helps keep the cabin looking nice and tidy. The 4V pre-amp outputs will be sure to push a nice clean signal to my amplifier, and I really love the HD radio features too! I haven't tried the Bluetooth Pandora connection with my Blackberry yet, but I'm sure it will work well.

    The interface is extremely intuitive, and I haven't even had to crack the owner's manual yet. I'm really curious to see how smoothly it can handle bouncing between the various bluetooth functions with all of my paired devices.

    I have no complaints about this unit so far. I have a whole list full of tests that I want to run it through, so I'll update my post in a few weeks. A+ for Alpine, and Kudos to Crutchfield for making this a smooth experience!
    Pros:
    -Great look -Included microphone -High-end feature set -Easy installation -Flip open USB port hides away nicely
    Cons:
    -Pricey unit -No option to change illumination color -No easily identifiable "Mute" function for Microphone (Maybe I'm missing it)
    15 out of 17 people found this helpful
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