Christmas is over and the new year is here – CES 2015 is next.

When Christmas is over and the new year is here that can only mean one thing for Car Stereo Chick.  The shop is booked with plenty of work and the consumer electronics show is only days away.  It’s time to get ready for CES 2015!  I’ll only be there for two days so I’ve narrowed down which brands I’ll be focusing on and what information I will be seeking.

Alpine CES 2015

Alpine will be my 1st stop during CES 2015.  Alpine will be revealing several new applications for their 9” truck and SUV AVN system including – get ready for it –  Dodge Ram, Toyota Tundra and JEEP WRANGLER.  I own a 2013 Jeep Wrangler and we do a lot of Jeep Wrangler audio systems in our shop so I’m pretty excited about this one; it should be a very hot model.

Alpine X009-GM
Alpine X009-GM installed in a GMC Yukon

Alpine has definitely branched out from their competitors by focusing in on these niche customers.  It makes a lot of sense; these are the types of customers that drop thousands of dollars into customizing their vehicles with upgraded tires, wheels, exhaust, lift kits, etc.  Why not build a stereo specifically for these customers?

Alpine has done just that designing a line of 9″ touch screen navigation stereos that seamlessly integrate with existing factory features such as SiriusXM, Bluetooth, Rear Seat Entertainment, and Onstar.  The Alpine X-009 series even integrates vehicle information such as tire pressure monitoring and the ability to read and reset vehicle error codes (through iDatalink Maestro integration modules).

Alpine X009-GM
Alpine X009-GM – Using the HDMI input you could watch movies from your iPad – not while driving of course.

All the Alpine X-009 models feature a 9″ touch screen, Navigation, Bluetooth, DVD, HDMI input and each model comes with some serious bragging rights.  Who else on the block really has a stereo this big and this cool?  I can’t wait to see Alpine’s X009 for the Jeep Wrangler at CES 2015.

Pioneer CES 2015 – when will we see Android Auto?

It’s not often, something really big and exciting comes along in the car audio industry, but I have to say Apple CarPlay has been one of those big things.  I’m happy I’ve been able to learn about it, adopt it and promote it.

Pioneer CarPlay update is finaly here
Pioneer CarPlay on AppRadio 4

Now that Apple CarPlay is out, I am eagerly anticipating Android’s answer to CarPlay.  And I’m hoping Pioneer has some answers for me at CES 2015 on when we can expect to see Android Auto integrated with a Pioneer head unit.

I’m pretty sure Pioneer will be the 1st to feature Android Auto aftermarket and I have lots of questions for Pioneer regarding this.  Will there be a software update for existing models (like Apple CarPlay)?  Will there be a model that features both CarPlay and Android Auto (unlike what we’ve seen from car manufacturers)?  When will we see a product like this hit the market?  I hope to find answers during CES 2015.

JL Audio CES 2015 – party at the Palm’s Casino

JL Audio won’t actually be at the convention center this year and I can’t say that I blame them.  Booth space at the convention center comes at a premium price.  I’m sure they’ll actually be able to present more (and more effectively) outside the convention center.  And with the extra money they’re saving being off the convention floor, I’m sure they’ll also be able to spoil their guests a bit more.

While attending CES 2015, I hope to see two new amplifier models which JL Audio recently announced.  They are incredibly compact, efficient and water proof.

New Amplifiers from JL Audio CES 2015
New Amplifiers from JL Audio CES 2015

These two new amplifiers from JL Audio, the HX280/4 and HX300/1, are offered in both Black and White (Car/Power Sport or Marine).  The HX280/4 is a 4 channel amp producing 50 watts x 4 RMS at 4 ohms.  The HX300/1 is a mono producing 300 watts x 1 at 2 ohms.  Both models have received IPX6 water resistant ratings and feature impressive power handling specs delivered in a tiny, compact package.

JL Audio HX280/4 and HX300/1
JL Audio HX280/4 and HX300/1

Impressive size, impressive ratings and impressive price – only $229.95.  I ordered a couple a few weeks ago and I am still waiting for their arrival.  I hope to see a sample of these new JL Audio amplifiers while attending CES 2015.

Other cool stuff while at CES 2015

I will definitely venture over to Kenwood’s booth and Sony’s booth as well and I will post about any other cool car audio related gadgets I find while at CES 2015.  Check back next weekend to learn about all the latest and greatest in car stereo from CES 2015.

Car Stereo Chick is going to CES 2015
Car Stereo Chick is going to CES 2015

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  1. Can you please ask a Kenwood representative what are the differences between the DDX9702S and the DDX9902S? The press release doesn’t elaborate on this.

    • Hi Julien, I did ask and I took notes while questioning and while they did a closed room demonstration. I will do full Kenwood write up shortly. Briefly, the DDX9902s is the eXcelon version and the DDX9702s is the regular. Off the top of my head the EQ is more advanced in eXcelon and you get a 5 volt pre out vs 4 volt. I spent a lot of time with them and asked a lot of questions on those particular models and took a lot of pictures of the full line up and tried and tested everything I could. Just got back in town a few hours ago, I’m a bit jet lagged, hoping to get a post on kenwood up tomorrow.

    • Thanks Julien! I checked out Pioneer’s and Kenwood’s CarPlay and Android Auto head units and asked LOTS of questions thanks to great readers like you that brought up some great questions on the iLX-007 and App Radio 4. I will post some in depth articles shortly and am working a brief recap right now along with video uploads of Kenwood’s DDX9902s/DDX9702s and Pioneer’s AVIC-8100NEX. I will try to check out Parrot’s unit tomorrow. I’m skeptical on their sound quality, however. Parrot makes some great Bluetooth products, but they’re DEFINITELY not known for sound quality. Their Asteroid sounds like garbage, very muddy, no detail.

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