To Start with I have a 2008 RX350 with the Premium Sound System. I decided to upgrade to a Kenwood Nav system based on Carver's RX330 install. Thanks Carver!
This will also be a review of both the Kenwood DNN990HD and the DNX890.
I started off with the Beatsonic wiring Harness Kit as well as the Beatsonic trim kit.
Also used PAC SWIRC Steering wheel interface, Alpine C115 Rear View Camera, Alpine KTP-445U 4 channel amp, Kenwood USB Ipod cord (with lightning adapter for Iphone 5)
Kicker Hideaway SubwooferHS8, and a Proclip Iphone adapter which attaches to the air vent.
To start with I had Stereo King in Clakamas Oregon do the install.
The first install consisted of the Kenwood DNN990HD which has the internet access via either your Iphone or a hotspot in your vehicle and was supposedly Kenwood's top of the line in dash Navigation system. The Alpine C115 backup camera worked great and was chosen because I didn't want the fisheye view. The C115 is a great back up camera but does not have the parking lines some other cameras have. The beatsonic harness as well as the steering control worked perfect right out of the box.
The DNN990HD is anything but user friendly. It took several days to figure out how to power it up without entering a password every time. The trick is to get signed up on the Kenwood Route Collector site immediately with a user name ect. After that you can enter your user name and it will start up without re-entering each time upon start up.
I thought I would use the internet feature but for me it was not worthwhile.
What is great about the DNN990HD, it's processor is fast, really fast. When you plug in an address it calculates it very quick. I was dissapointed though with the sound and felt it wasn't even as good as my USA Spec cord which I had installed before the Nav system. I don't stream music via bluetooth I always use a cord for the best sound. The Mid's and tweeters on the dash were almost non existent no matter what setting I used. Also Vocals and speaking voices didn't come through well.
The internet portion worked great when hooked up to a hotpspot/Iphone. The sound quality of the bluetooth phone portion was very good but the ring for incoming calls was some kind of hip hop jingle that cannot be changed. (Verified this via Kewood)
But the worst thing about the DNN990HD it is the speed in which it boots up. This is the slowest Nav system I have ever seen. Almost double of any other system. Granted the backup camera works immediately but nothing else comes on for over a minute. Not only that, but when it does come on you still have to then punch Navigation and go through the whole "I accept" thing. There is no default to go to the Nav screen upon start up. This is very frustrating when you are trying to plug in an address to go somewhere or want to listen/adjust the radio. Since this was a new product no dealer had one hooked up because if they had, I never would have purchased it. I suppose if you were a very patient person you could sit around and wait for it to boot up, I am not that kind of person.
After trying to live with it for a month or so I couldn't take it anymore and headed back to Stereo King to exchange the unit and see what they could do about the sound quality.
I ended up going with the Kenwood DNX890HD unit, added the Kicker Hideaway Sub and also had them install an Alpine KTP-4450 small 4 channel amp to power the front door and dash tweeters and mids. Everything worked flawlessly. To be fair the DNX890HD's Nav processor doesn't calculate as fast but it still is very fast. What it does do is boot up in about half the time of the DNN990HD. The best feature though is that the Nav will default to go immediately to the "Accept" screen. After some tweaking I found the sound to be much improved. I did have to turn down the gains on the Alpine amp as it was way more efficient than the internal amp which was still being used for the rear seat speakers. Additionally I set the High Pass Filter on the Alpine amp to "off" ie full pass on the tweets and mids on the dash. It was set at 80hz but sounded better set to off for some reason.
Several tweaks on the deck also helped a lot. Some of them are Space enhancer small, Highway sound high, elevation high, bass boost 1, loudness low. I don't listen to music at high volumes but these settings seemed to work great.
Also I used the Proclip RX350 mount as I like to listen mostly to tune in radio and Pandora and I don't like to reach down to change things on the deck. I would rather do that on the Iphone. I really wish that Kenwood would get their act together and get a cord that works with the IPhone 5 as far as video. The new amp fit next to the existing amp as the picture shows. I of course want to change out the speakers but from what I have heard I will need to have spacer rings installed for aftermarket speakers and am not sure which depth of spacers I will need. Also new speakers may require an addtional amp for the rear speakers.
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Last edited by Packrat1; 10-27-13 at 07:46 AM..
Looks good! Glad you got it worked out. Wow, hard to believe my install is almost three years old. I'm still rocking my old 4S waiting for iPhone 6 to decide to upgrade my dash unit.. If Apple doesn't get a bigger screen I'll probably defect to Android.
This time around I want the phone to be the nav system. Plan a route on the couch and then just plug it into the head unit for display. That and blue tooth streaming and I'll be updated. I know you said the streaming isn't the same quality as plug in but my driving is mostly in town and it would be so convenient to have the music from my ipod or Pandora just play rather than having to plug it in for a 10 minute trip.
The quality of the Kenwood has been rock solid, not one issue in three years.
I did play around with just using the bluetooth for streaming audio. You have to make sure to set the bluetooth setting for speakers to "all" instead of just "front speakers" otherwise the sub and rear speakers don't seem to work. I unfortunately I am too picky about the sound so I had to go back to the cord but that is just me. Probably would be fine for most people.
Last edited by Packrat1; 11-23-13 at 01:35 PM..
Yes the Pioneer AVH-X3600BHS would fit but you would need to buy the Beatsonic or Metra faceplate as well as the beatsonic wiring harness and the Axcess Steering wheel control if you want it all to work.
Ok Packrat, I still haven't visited with the installer, but I have the Metra faceplate. But while I am aware of the Beatsonic kit, and the ADBOX1 wiring harness, I have not heard of a Beatsonic harness. What is the model if you have it please?
I would really think twice about the ADBOX1 wiring harness as from what I understand you can lose some of your features ie: climate control ect.. The beatsonic harness takes the place of your factory radio and keeps all of the features except no fade it is set in the middle. Of course the Beatsonic harness is more expensive but is plug and play. http://www.beatsonicusa.com/partfind...0330&Year=2006
One thing though no matter which harness you buy be sure to set all of the funtions on your factory radio to neutral settings before you unplug it because if you use the factory amp these settings are retained (remembered) and can cause sound problems if they are set too high one way or the other.
Last edited by Packrat1; 03-24-14 at 08:44 PM..