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New AM/FM/CD/MP3 Player

I just got a VRCD400-SDU today at wall mart.. $79.99

New am/fm/cd/mp3/usb key/sd memory card/aux in on face of it car radio
Given all the controversy over the unit I decided to bench test it before installing it in Sea Puppy.

I hooked it up to a 12v power supply I have sitting in my office for just such a need. Hooked up the RCA outs to a computer system mic in connector and then started playing. This actually gave me decent stereo sound through the computer sound system.

FM:
I did not have a radio antenna at hand but the normal 3 or 4 strongest stations came in fine without it.

USB:
I have a 1 gig jump drive on my key ring with mixed mp3’s in various folders and other files.. It found the music and has played 15 songs or so fine. I have skipped around a bit no problem also the jump up or down 10 on the remote worked good for me also.. (as I’ve been playing I have found a couple mp3’s that didn’t play correctly. (they are ones that have done this in other players though) I also think it hit some non mp3 files and reset to the first mp3 on the disk. so there are some issues there. Overall though I think with a dedicated mp3 drive it would do fine.. I will have revisit this on my web-log after using it for a while.

CDs:
worked like a champ both regular and mp3. no problems so far

AUX IN:
didn’t play with yet.

SD slot:
didn’t play with yet.. no card.

MISC.. there is an option on mine to turn off the volume beeping noise that everyone has complained about (so far i can only do it with the remote. hit the SEL button and hold it down and it drops you into an extended menu that has this as an option) Just for kicks and giggles I threw in a disc with some .ogg vorbis files on it.. :( error 07 .. so it doesn’t read them.. Dimmer switch… my unit comes with a wire for hooking up to the vehicle dimmer switch.

I installed the radio and failed to take one measurement into consideration. :( how deep it is.. I lacked about 1.5 inches to have it flush mount.. lol and I cut the hole out for it already…..

However all is not lost… I installed it there anyway and am going to build a spacer to make it right.. this will bring it out a inch and a half but I can use the space as a storage space for sd cards with music on them and usb memory keys :)

Other than this it looks nice and works great.. I installed the splitter for the VHF antenna and the reception is amazing.. I get stations on it that my car only dreams of hearing. I guess having a 3 or 4 db antenna 35 feet in the air helps :) The remote control is nice also. I am going to put a mirror in so that I can change stuff from in the cockpit. The new speakers were relatively easy to install also. I got waterproof speakers that matched the hole pattern of the old speakers.. I had to file the edges of the holes for the cone to get it to fit but not much.. Then new speakers sound great. I still have to hook up the inside speakers. I’m not sure how they will sound.. I might need to replace them also.. but im not to worried about that.. I can use normal car speakers in their own inclosures and just mount them on the bulk head.

I created the wooden spacer to make it fit. It was deeper than the space I tried to install it in.

 
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Here it is under the VHF. I still have to stain the wooden spacer I built to match the wood of the bulkhead.

 
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I also mounted and installed the Uniden 525BK VHF that i got over christmass. The hole I had cut out to mount the Standard Horizon VHF I had previously installed had to be cut out larger. With the DSC capabilities of the newer radio I had to wire in the NMEA183 signal from the Garmin GPS and I also pre-wired up the hailer cable.. last but not least I setup the MMSI number I got on the Boat US website.

Here are a few pictures.

 
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Radio mounted over the AM/FM radio

 
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The WHAM4 Wireless handset to the radio Mounted under the chart table and inverter.

 
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It lights up at night :)

 
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