Bargain Stereo Upgrade for Figgy's California Insight
Alpine head unit, low end but fine for me:
Open box special at Good Guys!
I first got a Pioneer 1500 head, but I didn't like it very much. The brilliant blue light shown with the light of 1000 suns day and night, and the equalizer settings made me near insane from fiddling and yet none of them ever sounded right. I exercised my constitutional right to return something I don't like, and I sent the Pioneer back to limbo land as a Best Buy open box item. I craved the good old 'bass' and'treble' adjustments, and luckily I right away found this Alpine model at a local Good Guys on clearance as the display model they said was 'open box'. Little did I know that Good Guys 'Open Box' in reality meant no box, no manuals, no screws, no bolts, no nothin... They did give me a plastic bag to carry it out in, however.
Nice Pioneer speakers for $70, another open box miracle:
My Good Guys shopping experience just kept getting better and better, as they had these display model Pioneers on sale for just $70. Once again, their 'open box' meant no frills as they unscrewed them from the wall listening room dispay and handed them to me over the table. They did include 4 drywall screws for mounting. How generous that was! Who needs a box anyway. These are the 'full basket' depth, but I convinved myself for that price I would find a way to mount them. I ended up making custom nylon spacers out of some rigid nylon tubing I picked up at Home Depot. You can see that I did not bother to get a factory made spacer, and to my novice eye they look decent enough with my home made mounting. I stuck some extra screws in to hold the face plate and give extra stabilization. The pre-made spacer cost about $10, and it wasn't even the right size. By using the nylon tube I save $6, and I have myself some nice rolls of tubing to use if I want to move fluids around somewhere.
I had originally upgraded to Pioneer 1647s from Fry's, but they didn't hold a candle to these and I returned them. My recommendation to anyone is to put up with the small extra hassle of fitting a full depth speaker. I didn't want to carve out the door, so I used the spacer method.