LAS VEGAS —
Alpine is expanding its selection of Pandora-controlling head units to four models from one, launching its first A/V-navigation unit with built-in HD Radio, and bringing out an entry-level amplifier line.
At North Hall meeting room N101, Alpine will also show its first three head units with Sirius XM’s new universal connector, which will be offered later in the year by at least one other autosound supplier. The DIN connector connects directly to a new outboard XM tuner and makes it unnecessary to install a separate protocol-translator box and a separate power wire for the tuner. The development is hailed by Alpine as a “big breakthrough in ease of purchasing and installation.”
The new satellite tuner delivers new features already available in some radio transportable plug-and-play satellite tuners. The new features include song alerts, game alerts, iTunes Tagging and embedded memory to pause a program.
The three head units with universal Sirius XM connector are the HD Radio-equipped double-DIN INA-W910 A/Vnavigation system with Pandora control; the CDE-123 CD-receiver with Pandora; and the CDE-124SXM CDreceiver, which lacks Pandora. Pricing on the three was unavailable.
The CDE-124SXM will be the only one of the three units to be hard-bundled with the satellite tuner.
Also in its lineup, Alpine will add two iPod/USB ports to a head unit for the first time, one for the front and one for the rear. It appears in one CD-receiver.
In Pandora developments, Alpine will reduce the opening price of a Pandora- controlling head to a suggested $180 for the new CDE-122 CD-receiver. It and the other two new Pandora heads — the INA-W910 nav unit and CDE-123 CD-receiver — will join the company’s current Pandora head, the mech-less $399-suggested iDAX305S. The latter remains Alpine’s sole mech-less unit.
All of Alpine’s Pandora-controlling head units connect via USB to an iPhone to control the Pandora app. Like before, all control multiple Pandora functions, including “thumbs up/down,” but the new units add ability to create custom stations from the dash.
Besides Pandora, the INA-W910 A/V-nav unit adds other enhancements compared to Alpine’s current model. New features include built-in HD Radio, iTunes Tagging, and built-in hands-free Bluetooth.