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pinayreefer 08-01-2011 10:29 AM

Mr. Music Please!
Our new (to us) boat has no stereo system so we're trying to figure out what the best configuration would be. I've noticed that most of the marine stereo's available still have CD players, to me a potential source of problems down the road since it's a hole in the system. We only use MP3 players nowdays, sicne they're so much more compact and are thinking XM/Sirius radio would be a good feature also.
Any thoughts on our best choice, including what kind of speakers you prefer?
Our boat is a '77 Allied Princess.
Thanks in advance!

bobperry 08-01-2011 10:37 AM

Stereo is my hobby but I still play lp's.
You might look into Gallo speakers. They are round, about the size of a softball, and very high quality. But you might be better of with a "dock" for your MP player that includes powered speakers. It won't be high end hi-fi but I'll bet it will be adequate. I have one in my pool room and the quality of sound surprised me. Boats are not good places for sound so I would not get too elaborate. Not sure what is available that is battery powered though.

RobGallagher 08-01-2011 11:22 AM

Look for a portable MP3/Ipod system that provides great sound and a remote. Re-chargeable is a plus.
I have a sony stereo system installed and in the end it was a waste of money as it gets used as an Ipod player 99.9999% of the time. I also end up dragging my portable/rechargeable Ipod stereo system with me at times because it is just so easy.

IMHO it will boil down to your electrical system. Can you recharge the Bose portable Ipod player? If so, go with that. If not, look for something quality that will run off 12 volts.

Being able to move your system to the beach, marina pool, picnic on a little island, etc, etc, would be a huge bonus.

T37Chef 08-01-2011 12:33 PM

If mounting the head unit inside the cabin...dont waste your money on a marine unit...considering how fast the technology changes, longevity of the unit doesn't really apply.

You will want one that has an iPod cable, and some power considering the length of the speaker wire.

jfdubu 08-01-2011 12:56 PM

I have a cheap car stereo mounted in the cabin, two "Poly-Planer" speakers in the cockpit and two small boxes mounted in the cabin. The whole system cost less than $200.00 and still sounds fine after 4 years. It doesn't take alot of power to fill the cabin of a 28' boat and I rarely push the system. And as far as I'm concerned when (not if) the weather gets to the parts it won't hurt ($) too much to replace them.


Minnewaska 08-01-2011 01:14 PM

I have a Sony marine radio, with CD and an input for a Ipod. I don't like it, but I also don't really like music playing while sailing, only when done for the day. I would probably only have a portable system for the cockpit, as we have to go below to adjust volume, change music etc. Not worth it. An installed system in the salon is fine.

This was just poor design on our part, but the cockpit speakers and salon speakers both come on at once. They should definitely be separate for when you want music below, but don't want to broadcast to your neighbors above.

Again, just not that important that we've gotten around to fixing it.

CalypsoP35 08-01-2011 01:15 PM

There is a thread on this site title "Marine stereo needed?" that has a lot of good info. While it's a couple of years old much of the commentary is still applicable. I ended up buying the Kenwood car stereo online from Cruthfield that was recommended by one of the posters and have been very happy with it. Especially pleased with the fact that it has a remote control. My unit is in the cabin so I decided I did not need a marine quality unit. I've had it for 2 years and so far so good.

I put 2 small poly planar speakers in the winch boxes of my cockpit combing and that has also worked out well.

millenniumman 08-01-2011 01:21 PM

Another option
I just ordered a black box systems from Prospec.

Prospec Electronics Online Store

I havn't recieved it yet so no word on ease of installation and functionality, but it looks like a nice system.

Wired remote in the cockpit, black box will be mounted in the cabin out of the way (and dry!). Comes with an i-pod connection as well as Sirius ready.

I like that the remote (wired so no need for direct line of sight) displays & controles the ipod/sirius functions.

FYI, I'm relacing an 8 year old cd player from this company that still works. Just upgrading to a unit w/ ipod/sirius controls. I no longer have any need for cd's on the boat

Donna_F 08-01-2011 01:24 PM


Originally Posted by RobGallagher (Post 757188)
Being able to move your system to the beach, marina pool, picnic on a little island, etc, etc, would be a huge bonus.


We have an older installed radio with four speakers that came with the boat and we also used a portable satellite radio "boombox." The satellite didn't take up much room and when we didn't have shore power it used D cells. Satellite is subscription-based of course, but you can suspend it for the months you aren't on the boat.

I have not felt the need for music while underway. I prefer conversation and burble instead.

chef2sail 08-01-2011 05:43 PM

We have a Clarion system with 25 rms per channel X4. It has an I pod jack and is hooked up to two Bose speakers in the cabin, Flatscreen TV with DVD plays through it.
Also I put two marine bose speakers in the cockpit> I threaed up through the pedastal tubes the remote to the clarion and installed it on my navpood on the helm. From there you can:

Turn it on and off, switch the IPOD tracks, adjust fade ( inside the boat and outside in the cockpit as well as balance, base etc.. Wasnot hard to do.

We dont listen to music much on the bay when sailing unless its a long trip or we are in the slip or anchored. On our trips to NE or the LI Sound thats a different story.


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