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Old 21-11-2006, 08:45   #1
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Stereos onboard

Hey my name is Kailani and I am new to the sailing world. My husband just bought a Beneteu and he looking to accesorize it...he's got alot of stuff already but not a stereo so i am looking to buy him one for christmas. Any advice on which brands are good or worth it to actually pay those outrageous prices? Thanks!

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Old 21-11-2006, 08:55   #2
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car stereo

No need to buy a "marine" unit, especially, if like most, it'll be mounted below deck.

A car stereo will work just fine.


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Old 21-11-2006, 09:10   #3
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yes a car stereo will work fine,

but get a radio that will play mp3 tracks, and preferably one that has a front point to connect in an ipod.

even better, get one that has a remote control.

I have the uk equivalent of and drive through 4x6" JBLspeakers. 6x9 would be better but I dont have the space. with a beneteau, you reallly need to have marine speakers for at least two of them.

most people just use a normal car aerial dangling vertically behind the bunk cushions
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Old 21-11-2006, 11:20   #4

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Oh boy... I might take some heat for this one.

I would actually suggest buying a different item for him. Stereos are something us guy are so very particular about. Not only will you have to see if you want a 12VDC car/boat stereo vs a regular home stereo - you will also want to consider what speakers you are powering, everything Talbot said above, what Randy said, and a host of things like what features your husband wants.

Maybe there is a less complicated item still on the list that you could buy?
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Old 21-11-2006, 12:14   #5
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You can get CD players that will play DVD's as well as CD's. You want inside and outside speakers that can be switched on or off.
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Old 21-11-2006, 12:27   #6
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I have to agree with Sean,

There are many variables, depending on the boat, type of music he (and you) likes to listen to, whether he's an audiophile or not, etc. Then there is the format question. CDs, satellite radio (popular on boats), MP3s, iPod dock, etc?

How about a tie?


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Old 21-11-2006, 12:27   #7
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Peersonally, I like Sony Marine CD players...
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Old 21-11-2006, 12:47   #8
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I say a good car stereo that has the capability of extra speakers. You know your guy, and whether or not he is that particular. Ipod capability is a must. I guess being able to turn off separate pairs of speakers can conserve energy. We got an Ipod, and moved a big box of music off.

OTOH, I know a powerboater who has a stereo so grand that he has to run his engine to make it work; says he has $4000 invested. I can't say this is smart, but certainly impressive when it is working. We can hear the bass all the way across the lakee.
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Old 21-11-2006, 15:52   #9
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I agree with most of the others... a good car stereo (with option for external amp) and CD changer plus front panel MPs input will give you lots of options. Sony or Kenwood are good. I have been using car steros on my boats for decades.. no problem! Some even now offer little remotes which are real handy to control it from the cockpit. Get separate speakers... choose them together for the sound you like! And car stereos are pretty good value these days. I think he will like as a gift.. and if you are not much of a sailor you will be the DJ on board!

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Old 21-11-2006, 19:39   #10
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I have a five disc DVD/CD player, 5.1 surround, sub and LCD screen in the Saloon and two speakers out covering the Pilot house and aft area. It runs on 230V from our 3KW inverter. IT ROCKS!!!

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Old 21-11-2006, 20:01   #11
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JVC do a nice 12 stack CD player that only cost around $500 Aud a few years back including waterproof 100w speakers.

Pblais, the ones that play DVD as well that you mentioned, do you know if one can store music on the DVD and play it.?

This would let you have a huge amount of music on a single disc.

Maybe even external hard drive down the track with music and movies on one device, That would be good, no more cd's and dvd's on board.

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Old 21-11-2006, 22:16   #12
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I use my laptop. All-in-one entertainment center for everything except broadcast radio. I haven't decided what I'm going to do about that, but probably a battery-powered multiband...

I suggest a lovingly worded card with a largish gift card to a boatique, mentioning you'd thought about purchasing a stereo but realized his knowledge of the subject is greater than yours...

On the internet, nobody knows you're a dog anchored in a coral atoll.
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Old 22-11-2006, 09:47   #13
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I use a "boombox". It fits on a shelf, has it's own power supply (batteries), has enough wattage to fill the saloon with sound (how many watts do you really need to fill a typical 15 foot by 12 foot room?), is portable so we can take it ashore for a picnic, and is cheap to replace after a few seasons the damp, corrosive environment of a boat.

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Old 22-11-2006, 10:55   #14

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Kailani, I'd suggest picking your husband's brain ("Were you going to add music to the boat sometime next year? Do boats need special stereo stuff?") before you buy anything.

As noted the marine stereos are damned expensive, BUT, at least in theory, you need special parts to last in a slat air environment. A conventional boom box with rotary volume control will get all scratchy and some of the buttons will stop working after being out in damp air for a year. And in theory, the circuit boards should be "conformal coated" to prevent moisture damage as well. Whether a pricey "marine" stereo really has any of that...damfino.

Then again, you can also buy your husband a nice high-capacity Ipod or similar digital "music box" (MP3 etc. player) so that he has the option of picking the boat stereo by himself--and then he can bring along a thousand albums of music on the nice music box you bought him.<G>

And the Bose weather-resistant speakers sold for use on decks and other exposed places, work very nicely on boats. At a non-marine price, but still expensive simply because they are very good speakers.

I now some folks who live music and refuse to have "noise" aboard their boats, too. So...doublecheck his plans on this. Or, you can buy him a nice pair of "Generation 3" (new technology, not a brand name) nightvision glasses. I can guarantee you, that's a toy every sailor will be impressed to get.<G> The older cheaper "Generation 1" Russian-made stuff is nowhere near as good--but is way cheaper. (Caveat emptor about russian technology.<G>) Still, that also makes a nice present. Might be too much technology for a purist, but it is very nice when you're trying to see in the dark!
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Old 23-11-2006, 04:57   #15
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I recently installed an Alpine. They make a model that has XM radio built in! Meaning the tuner is inside the unit. They also offer an adapter so you can plug in your Ipod. It will charge it as it plays. Absolutely love it!

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