Alpine iDA-X100 Head Unit Sans CD Player

alpine ida x100 Alpine iDA X100 Head Unit Sans CD Player

When I first got a car the first thing I did of course was put in a serious system, but back then it wasn’t about fidelity, it was about how many woofers you could fit in the trunk. Yeah I was one of those kids… I know my way around car audio quite well, but I have been out of it for so long I’m not to hip to the new technologies. The other day I decided to fill the hole where my last head unit was previously jacked. Apparently someone wanted it more than I did, but it gave me an excuse for a new toy.

So I dropped by Tweeter for some amazing going out of business sales to shop. As I was checking them out I was warned by one of the sales people that this particular head unit did not have a CD player in it- as if this was to deter the possibility of me returning it. I was excited to hear that such a thing existed. The head unit was basically just an in dash MP3 player. Alpine dubs this as a “Digital Media Receiver”. This idea is appealing to me because, one I don’t use CDs and two it’s a big part of the player that is likely the first to break due to having moving parts.

I have only had it for a few weeks, but so far is had been pretty good to me. It sounds great though the Polk speakers in the factory locations and browsing the USB drive is really easy even while driving. It supports standard MSC flash drives, WMV DRM, and the iPod. No Zune support but I’m told by the third party accessories manager at Microsoft that it is indeed coming. The reason that Zune support is taking so long is that manufactures have a 3 year product cycle on head units. So we may see them as soon as the next generation. That should be soon, since this X100 is a year or two old. I do give it the abi endorsement and at under $270 it’s a deal.




8 Comments

Joe on December 2, 2008 5:11 PM

A simple stripped down version of this on Crutchfield, the Clarion FB275BT, has Bluetooth, uses only SD cards, and is on sale for $99, and $120 for black. It is rather plain, but hey, can’t beat the price, especially with the bt features.That Alpine unit also has nice ipod controls, but who uses that around here?I wish that others would ask apple to share the interface; it sucks not being able to control the player via the headunit. But I guess when you are number one, who cares what others you support?

Flachappy on December 3, 2008 3:28 AM

I’ve had my eye on these for a while; I don’t understand why it’s taken so long to pull the CD players out of car stereos. Removing it has so many advantages: more space for the screen, buttons, circuits, amp, and, most importantly, heat sinks.If these supported Flac audio I’d be on ‘em in a second. If they threw in class D Tripath style amps I’d start preaching about them on the streets.Just imagine: a head unit that doesn’t skip, can access weeks of music, and has enough guts to power any speaker – without making so much heat that it melts your dash.Oh, dreams.

joe on December 4, 2008 1:05 AM

Just remember that most head units fold down anyhow, and the limiting factor on amp power is really the gauge of wiring going to the head unit.I personally am more interested in vorbis, and was thinking back in the day for a music keg by Kenwood/phatnoise. That, played flac on a big hdd.

NTolerance on December 5, 2008 4:51 PM

Does this or the Clarion unit previously mentioned do gapless and/or album art?

john on December 6, 2008 2:58 PM

I would like to buy that but have a question.Does the apline ida x100 support playlists on mass storage devices, like *.pls ,or *.m3u ??? Any answer please???

Sean on February 9, 2009 6:50 PM

I have the same question as John. I actually bought one to replace a deck that was ripped off recently and love it, but want to create playlists for my jump drive and can’t figure out how.

reddy on April 2, 2009 10:09 PM

Oh, you really do the right choiceI have bought this at Tradestead sometimes ago , and I can say this is really the best I have ever had, I like it very much!

alex on November 11, 2009 5:10 AM

just did some research and now theres the x-200. geting that for my car looks pretty good.

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