Pioneer Electronics is bringing new music-playback options to its 2016 AVH series of multimedia DVD receivers, adding 48kHz/24-bit FLAC playback, Spotify, Pandora presets and Bluetooth dual-device connection to most models. Pandora presets are promoted as an industry first for aftermarket receivers.
All nine new in-dash head units add a new resistive touchscreen to provide brighter colors and increased touch sensitivity.
The new models will be available in November at a suggested $230 to $500. They include dual-DIN models and single-DIN models. The latter features motorized display that emerges from the dash.
All but two models at $230 and $280 deliver Spotify control via Bluetooth and USB, and all but those two models feature FLAC playback. Pandora presets appear in five models from $280 to $480, and Bluetooth with dual-device connection is available in five models from $330 to $500.
The five Bluetooth models with Bluetooth dual-device connection enable a simultaneous full-time connection of two smartphones, enabling a call to be picked up by either paired phone. The feature eliminates the need to pair and unpair phones to make and answer calls.
The five head units also deliver music-library browsing via Bluetooth. iPhones use Bluetooth AVCRP 1.5 to search through playlists, artists, songs, and genres. For Android smartphones with Bluetooth AVCRP 1.4 or higher and with Media Transfer Protocol (MTP), users can browse through media folders via folder type.
With Pandora station presets, users who create customized Pandora stations on an Android phone or USB-connected iPhone can store the stations in six presets.
With Spotify control on all but two models, listeners use head-unit controls to play, pause and skip Spotify tracks as well as browse playlists, albums and radio stations on the go. Spotify works over Bluetooth for Android devices and over Bluetooth or USB cable for iPhones.
Other key features include Siri Eyes Free on all five Bluetooth models, HD Radio in the top two, SiriusXM compatibility in five models, and USB on all models.
With USB connectivity, the head units control basic playback functions of music stored on a USB-connected iPhone, iPod, portable USB drive or compatible Android device. Users control play, pause, fast forward, reverse, random and repeat. The heads also display track, artist and album information. Android devices must run OS 4.0 (Ice Cream Sandwich) or later OS and feature Android Media Transfer Protocol (MTP).
All but a $230 and $280 model connect to Pioneer’s separately sold AVIC-U260 outboard navigation system, and all but those two feature 13-band graphic EQ, built-in high/low pass crossover with adjustable points and slopes, built-in auto EQ and time alignment, and Advanced Sound Retriever, which improves the sound quality of compressed-music files.