3-Series (E46, E90)Chat relating to the BMW 3-Series from 1999 to Current. Models include: BMW 316i, BMW 318i, BMW 318Ci, BMW 320i, BMW 323i, BMW 325i, BMW 330i, BMW 328 Ci, BMW 328i, BMW 325i/xi, BMW 330Ci, BMW 320d, BMW 330d, BMW 335d.
dollar for dollar, i'd recomend a handheld unit. that way you can use it when camping, fishing, in an aircraft or when traveling in a different car.
if your dead set on buyin' an indash unit, your better off going w/ an aftermarket unit. i've been out of the game for a while, but when i was into car audio, the Pioneer AVIC-N1 was tits...im sure whatever replaced it is still highly regarded.
the oem unit is retarded expensive and not worth it. i'd rather spend $1200 on the Pionneer unit and improve the audio SQ, add DVD playback capability and get navigation.
Thanks man... i'd like to install something in the car instead of handheld.. do you know if the aftermarket installation would be flush with the rest of the console? or would it stand out from the rest of the stuff? what is the best aftermarket manufacturer that will go with car interior lookwise?
yeah, they make dash kits that look pretty good. there's plenty of room in the e46 DIN slot, so no worries about fitting flush and lookin' good....
as for manufacturers, hands down, Nakamichi looks best, as they have understated styling and the illumination is almost the exact same shade of orange that BMW uses, not to mention their electronics are second to none and it shows in the SQ attainable from starting w/ a Nakamichi head unit. thing is, last i checked they didn't make a navigation unit. my second choice would be Alpine, and i know they make single DIN nav. units....i just don't know if they pack as much bang for the buck that the Pioneer unit does. You should PM the bull, he's the resident expert these days and could probably give ya more info than i.
def. not BMW. they're knowledgeable about all things BMW, not aftermarket. For that world, i would turn to aftermarket experts. Should be pretty easy to find a good shop, just look for the telltale signs, clean well lit stores that carry mid to upper end audio. as for installation, ya just flat out tell 'em what you want and what you have....most installers won't work on something they don't want to or don't feel comfortable with, so if they hesitate, you might look elsewhere.
installation is very simple on these cars...i've pulled the head unit and added an amp and sub to mine...one of the easiest installs i've done....and i've done a lot!
oh, btw, look around on crutchfield.com and use as a basis for pricing....they are pretty fair....i would definitely make sure wherever you go, you pay less, or at the very worse, the same price as their store. local shops around these parts generally beat them by 10-20%. hope this helps.
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