Need advice re car stereos

I need advice about car stereos and must admit I know noting about them.
My pre-owned Toyota Camry came with an in-dash cassette/receiver which
also controls a cd-changer that sits in the trunk. There is a free pocket just below this receiver. I want to get rid of that changer in the trunk---it is too much hassle, and also keeps getting bumped by luggage, grocery bags, and like.
I am considering following solutions:
(1) An in-dash cd player that would go into the free pocket and work with the existing cassette receiver. It need not and probably should not have its own radio, amplifier, etc. It could be one disc player or a changer.
(2) An entirely new cd-cassette-radio player. This seems wasteful but if it is the best option, or the cheapest or something like that, I would consider it.
I would appreciate advice from those who know car stereos. Brands, as well as the kind of stores I should go to (Chicago area). I don't need MP3, satellite radio etc, just "cd cassette AM FM".
Thanks.
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Ajanta wrote:

crutchfield.com has excellent service, and can set you up with a unit that will fit. They will also provide a wiring adapter. If you don't mind something a little garish looking, the Sony 'Explod' AM/FM/Cassette unit is good, and inexpensive. If you want a more 'classic' look, there are other manufacturers with units that should fit. Crutchfield sells them all.
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: crutchfield.com has excellent service, and can set you up : with a unit that will fit. They will also provide a wiring : adapter. If you don't mind something a little garish looking, the : Sony 'Explod' AM/FM/Cassette unit is good, and inexpensive. If : you want a more 'classic' look, there are other manufacturers : with units that should fit. Crutchfield sells them all.
If I do mail order, where should I go to get it installed?
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wrote:

Where in the Chicago area are you? Anywhere near Woodfield Mall?
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Ray O
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Ray O wrote: : Where in the Chicago area are you? Anywhere near Woodfield Mall?
I can drive anywhere within reasonable distance. Woodfield would be ok. Although I would imagine that many suitable stores would be nearer. I just don't know them.
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Most places that sell automotive audio systems like Circuit City and Best Buy also do installations. If you have the installation kit and adapter harness and you were close by, I might even pop it in myself.
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Ray O wrote: : Most places that sell automotive audio systems like Circuit City and Best : Buy also do installations. If you have the installation kit and adapter : harness and you were close by, I might even pop it in myself.
Thanks, but I haven't found the right solution yet. My cassette receiver is working fine, there is a free pocket below it. What is bothering me is the location of cd player: in the trunk. Ideally then, I would like a cd player that fits in the free pocket and is controlled by the cassette receiver. I haven't found it.
Lacking that, I'll see if the cd player can be moved from the trunk to somewhere inside the car. It is kind of big, but maybe a spot could be found.
Otherwise, I need to junk both cassette receiver and the cd player and buy a new unit with cassette and cd. The selection however is very limited and prices are high.
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On Fri, 29 Dec 2006 04:03:44 +0000, Ajanta wrote:

Since I am the only one that drives my cars, under the driver's seat is a good place for 'stuff'... unless you have a power seat. I figure nobody is EVER going to sit in the back seat of my Supra, so I put my 400W 4-channel power amp under the passenger's seat. ;)
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: Since I am the only one that drives my cars, under the driver's seat is a : good place for 'stuff'... unless you have a power seat. I figure nobody is : EVER going to sit in the back seat of my Supra, so I put my 400W 4-channel : power amp under the passenger's seat. ;)
Mostly I drive my car but occasionally my SO. Once in a while we do have passengers in the back seat. I'll have to examine the car with a critical eye for the best spot to relocate the changer.
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I think your least expensive option will be to relocate the existing CD changer to the interior somewhere. I had a CD changer in the trunk of my '92 Camry and agree that it was an inconvenient location. The 2000 LS 400 has a CD changer located in a dedicated compartment above the glove box, and although it is more convenient than the trunk, it is not located somewhere accessible while driving. The built-in CD changer in our '97 Avalon and '03 Sequoia is the most convenient.
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Ray O wrote:
: I think your least expensive option will be to relocate the existing CD : changer to the interior somewhere. I had a CD changer in the trunk of my : '92 Camry and agree that it was an inconvenient location. The 2000 LS 400 : has a CD changer located in a dedicated compartment above the glove box, and : although it is more convenient than the trunk, it is not located somewhere : accessible while driving. The built-in CD changer in our '97 Avalon and '03 : Sequoia is the most convenient.
Yes, I'll explore the relocation option first. The problem with the trunk, besides lack of access, is that the various objects keep bumping the player. Besides, it also makes it inconvenient to get to the spare tire and jack.
I am surprised that the selection of components for car audio is so poor. All I needed was a cd player, without radio, amp etc. For home audio, we can get all sorts of things and that's why I thought getting such a component for car audio would be possible. Apparently not.
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There does not seem to be many choices for an add-on aftermarket CD player that fits in the pocket under the radio. There seem to be several CD changers that fit in the trunk, but if you want an in-dash installation, you will have to replace the entire system. Crutchfield.com has a pre-paid installation option where they refer you to a local installer. Places like Best Buy or Circuit City do the installations in-house. You can probably get a Tuner/CD player, mounting and wiring adapters, and installation for under $250.
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Just go onto EBay, type in the year, make and model and CD player. You will find a lot of these Toyota add-on CD players that fit in place of the storage bin. I did this with a 1998 Corolla that we had. Less than $100 delivered, brand new.
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either a car stereo shop, or a mechanic. You just need somebody capable of pulling the stereo out of the dash and of inserting connectors.
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Do they still make cassette tapes? I pitched all mine into the trash years ago. No MP3? WHOA! Is it 1995 again? Seriously, in November I purchased a new Kenwood KDC-MP232 MP3/AM/FM Receiver for my daughter at Onlinecarstereo.com for $102.00: http://www.onlinecarstereo.com/CarAudio/ProductDetail.aspx?ProductID 717
Had it installed for $60 at a local shop that 'pimps' stretch Limos. My daughter is very happy with it - she keeps her entire music collection on four CD's full of MP3's (about 600 songs).
Good luck with the cassette tapes.......
HJS
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: Do they still make cassette tapes?
We do have an old collection. But more importantly, when traveling overseas, it is not uncommon to encounter music that seems interesting enough to try but we are not sure enough to spend big bucks. So we may spend $40 on twenty cassettes at $2 each rather than $200-300 on twenty cd's at $10-15 each.
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Ajanta wrote:

===Go to Crutchfield.com and search brand: Alpine, pick the one you like.
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On Thu, 28 Dec 2006 04:09:11 +0000, Ajanta wrote:

There are a few car stereos that incorporate the AM/FM/Cassette/CD, but they are kind of expensive. Can you ditch the Cassette, or do you have a large variety?
Also, what kind of changer is located in the trunk? There are some units, ie, Kenwood, Sony, Clarion that have propreitary adapters to only work with a macthing head unit, 'generic' adapters, such as Sony's D-Bus that are compatible among head units, or have a built-in FM transmitter that sends the signal from the CD to the radio via a pre-set (changable) FM frequency, like some of the XM radios do.
What year Camry is it? Most of the installations of aftermarket radios into a Toyota are real easy; you can pick up a wiring harness adapter at Wal*Mart for $7 that works with ANY Toyota from 1980-present. All aftermarket radios now use the same color coding for the wires, and the adapter uses the same color scheme, so fitting the new radio is easy; match the colors to the new adapter harness, twist and secure with electrician's tape, snap the harness in and bolt the radio in! That simple. UNLESS, the person before you cut the wires to put in the new radio. Then it's a bit more difficult, but if it is a recent radio it will still be the same color scheme, so you can clip the wires from the existing radio leaving a bit of the colored wire behind, and again match them up, splice and cover with tape. Either that, or, hopefully the person that installed the radio left the markers on the wiring explaining which wire is which connection.
Removal of the dash panel is pretty straightforward; there are usually screws under the top of the bezel that can be viewed by looking up above the ashtray, usually above the heater controls. Also, you will need to pull the ashtray and remove the two screws you'll see, and then the screws holding the metal 'snuff plate' (as I call it) and then GENTLY unsnapping the bezel. Again, knowing which year we're dealing with will help here.
The radios are usually secured to the dash using 4 10mm screw/bolts, I suggest using a 10mm socket since they are soft and if you don't have the correct screwdriver you'll strip the heads. Then the radio and the pocket come out as one unit, and there are screws on the side of the radio securing the bracket to the radio.
Almost every single radio sold now has holes on the side marked "T" and "N", T for Toyota and N for Nissan. Place the brackets in the holes marked "T" and use the screws you removed to secure the bracket, then snap the harness together and mount the radio. It's a fairly simple process, and, again, unless the harness was cut out, should take less than an hour!
And, another hint: I get most of my aftermarket radios from e-Bay. The only problem I have had so far was I bought an Eclipse there, and the 13 pin harness (WHO THE HELL thought up a 13 pin harness?!?!?!) was missing and the radio is 'keyed' to a CD the original owner had. I wouldn't buy an Eclipse unless the harness is included and the seller either tells you or provides you with the CD he used as a 'key'! They are REALLY good stereos, however! Since I only paid $15 for it, eh...live and learn. I can send it to Fujitsu to have it reset...but I digress.
If you decide to do this yourself, I'm almost always here every day, and would be glad to answer any more questions.
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Hachiroku ハチロク wrote:

Hachiroku,
Regarding your eBay adventures, are you buying new radios or used? Do you have a reliable seller?
Thanks! BC
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On Thu, 28 Dec 2006 13:24:54 -0500, BCDrums wrote:

I'll have to check it. There was one guy from Vancouver, IIRC, that was very good. I bought 2 JVC MP3 players from him. But all the radios I bought from e-Bay were no problem, except for the Eclipse.
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