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Old 11-29-2016, 07:35 AM   #1
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Stereo and speakers sound quality, and alternatives

We are working on our build sheet for a 2017 5.0 TA and we are trying to decide on the "Stereo/DVD with four speakers" option. We want a radio and we will play music stored on an Android device via Bluetooth. We don't plan to use the DVD player.

The components ETI is currently using (at least in the 5.0 TA) include the following:
The reviews on Amazon are not very good for the radio and there aren't any reviews for the speakers. I couldn't find very much info about the radio or the speakers on the internet.

Sarah at ETI, says they can install a radio that I provide and they will give me a $50 credit. She also said the speakers cannot be changed.

My questions are:
  • How does this system sound (good, bad, awful)? We aren't music snobs, but we don't want something that sounds bad.
  • Have you had any issues with this radio (not the prior radios that ETI used)?
  • Have you changed the radio (either yourself, or via ETI)? What radio did you use?
Thanks much for your input.
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Old 11-29-2016, 07:59 AM   #2
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I can't answer your questions directly Thomas, as I don't have, and don't plan on getting the stereo, but can offer an alternate suggestion, the way I plan to go. Please disregard if you are set on getting the stereo.

While many people like their built-in stereo, I am more of the mindset to have it a stand alone system, one that can be moved outside or taken anywhere with you. This also allows you to change up or upgrade what you have easily too. Granted, having it built in means nothing to set up, just turn it on.

I had a stereo in my 19 which worked just fine for the space, but it was very much under utilized, as we spend most of our time outside.

What I have is a Ultimate Ears UE Boom2 speaker that I picked up a few months back. This little bomb gets top ratings from many reviewers. The sound is fantastic for such a small unit. The batteries seem to last a long time. If you want to blast music outdoors at a larger event, it is not super loud, but more than loud enough for around a campsite. We use it for sound on our TV too, and it sounds great, much better than the TV sound. Right now we just use our phones to play music with it, as I have about 7,000 songs on my phone.

BTW, this speaker is on sale at Best Buy right now for $150 CAD. I picked one up for a Christmas present for my son, and considered a second one for me, as they can be set up as stereo speakers.

The one thing I miss with this setup is the ability to play the radio through the speaker. What would others suggest as a portable radio tuner to use with it.
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Old 11-29-2016, 09:06 AM   #3
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The nice thing about blue tooth speakers is that they can place the sound close to you and less volume means quiet neighbors. In addition the quality varies but Bose makes a nice set up. I have used them for both radio, television and iPhone/Ipad music libraries. Reception for over the air radios can become problematic at time so it is better to bring your own music.
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Old 11-29-2016, 10:15 AM   #4
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We also elected to go without the stereo as we already had a Bose Soundlink portable bluetooth speaker which is excellent quality (see link below). As to a radio alternative, I suspect that there will be some kind of App on your mobile which depending on your plan's data allowance and cellphone coverage /wifi availibility would enable you to get radio on your mobile and then connect using blue tooth. I suspect that out there somewhere there would also be some kind of portable radio which can either be connected via bluetooth or, but less elegantly, by wire using the normal 1/8th inch speaker connection.

https://www.bose.ca/en_ca/products/s...FYJ8fgodD20D9A
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Old 11-29-2016, 10:34 AM   #5
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Thomas, we are getting the stereo option, but are getting the $50 credit and buying a different radio/stereo. We both have iPhones and iPods so I wanted more integration with them, and also a radio with HD. We live in the country and our HD radio receiver locks onto our local NPR station that is weak and fades in and out on the analog signal.

We don't need the DVD as if we ever decide we want a TV we will go with one that integrates a DVD player. Most modern speakers provide decent enough sound, and with the wiring done I can always replace them if needed.

This is the radio/stereo I am going with:Sony GS MEXGS810BH
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Old 11-29-2016, 11:27 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ThomasG View Post
We are working on our build sheet for a 2017 5.0 TA and we are trying to decide on the "Stereo/DVD with four speakers" option. We want a radio and we will play music stored on an Android device via Bluetooth. We don't plan to use the DVD player.

The components ETI is currently using (at least in the 5.0 TA) include the following:
The reviews on Amazon are not very good for the radio and there aren't any reviews for the speakers. I couldn't find very much info about the radio or the speakers on the internet.

Sarah at ETI, says they can install a radio that I provide and they will give me a $50 credit. She also said the speakers cannot be changed.

My questions are:
  • How does this system sound (good, bad, awful)? We aren't music snobs, but we don't want something that sounds bad.
  • Have you had any issues with this radio (not the prior radios that ETI used)?
  • Have you changed the radio (either yourself, or via ETI)? What radio did you use?
Thanks much for your input.
I agree with some of the others and prefer to have a portable stereo/radio unit mainly because we don't spend very much time in our trailer. We eat, cook, party, read, hike and bike, swim and listen to music outside. We mainly just sleep, get changed and raid the refrigerator inside.
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Old 11-29-2016, 12:10 PM   #7
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We are NPR/CBC junkies. Most of the places that we camp we cannot get a cell signal but can get the local NPR from repeater stations. The stock ETI antenna is much better than the one on our previous camper.

We had ETI install a single DIN Panasonic stereo with Klipsch speakers in the cabinets above the dinette. We use a TaoTronic Bluetooth transmitter for the Bose soundlink mini while sitting outside. Sitting around the fire listening to the Arctic Cactus Hour, priceless. Scott

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Old 11-29-2016, 01:11 PM   #8
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I think any radio installation should also include the weather channels or a separate weather radio, it does come in handy, particularly in the mid/south/west states.
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Old 11-29-2016, 01:22 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by J Mac View Post
I agree with some of the others and prefer to have a portable stereo/radio unit mainly because we don't spend very much time in our trailer. We eat, cook, party, read, hike and bike, swim and listen to music outside. We mainly just sleep, get changed and raid the refrigerator inside.
While I do not spend much time in the trailer, I am somewhat the opposite. I donor want to annoy my camping neighbors by listening to music outside. I go camping to enjoy nature, and that includes, to a degree, peace and quiet. I really don't want to listen to someone blaring country music, Mozart, or Kiss all day long. My listening is confined to headphones or the Escape stereo to which I have added a BlueTooth module (it is the previous model used by Escape, a non-BlueTooth Jensen. I find the sound very good given the small size of the speakers. Actually, I use a BT speaker (Bose Soundlink) when working in the garage at home. It is plugged into 120 v all time. What I don't like about the "portable" speakers is that they require periodic charging (tough if you're boon docking), have to be stored someplace, and most of them do not have replaceable batteries so when the internal battery fails, it becomes a throw away item. Not good, if it is one of the more expensive models.
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Old 11-29-2016, 01:27 PM   #10
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Thomas, Not to jump on the "keep it portable" bandwagon, but the following meets all of our music needs and more. Move them anywhere around in the camper, take them outside with you to listen to NPR morning news while stoking the camp fire and drinking that first cup of coffee, put them in your pocket to take with you to provide music at a dinner gathering elsewhere in the campground, whatever:
iPod Nano 7th Gen. (or 8th Gen. with more memory) with FM radio app and headphone jack/Aux-Out ($100-$120)
iPod nano - Technical Specifications - Apple
Note: For Bluetooth, you need to insert a set of ear buds to serve as the iPod's FM antennae. Otherwise, and our preference, a standard audio cable to hard wire iPod to speaker will also function as the iPod's antennae.
Bonus: iPod Nano also has a Fitness function to monitor our camp walks, trail hikes, etc.
808 Canz Wireless (Bluetooth) and Aux-In Speaker ($20; amazing sound quality for the size, way more volume than we ever need).
808 Audio : Speakers : CANZ
Sorry the photo is blurry, but you get the idea. The coin in the middle is a US quarter for size reference.
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