Head Unit Special - What the heck do they look like in actual BMWs? [Archive] - Bimmerfest - BMW Forums

: Head Unit Special - What the heck do they look like in actual BMWs?

01-31-2007, 10:13 AM
Alot of times we get inquiries and question or see post as to what head units look like in BMWs. Well we are doing our best to provide a service to our forum faithful and let them see for themselves. Some of them color match and some do not. Here is what we have so far.

If you would like more details about any of the head units please feel free to post here and I will take care of them in a timely fashion. I did most of the testing on the head units in the pictures and all except the Panasonic were in my 99 M3 with Harmon Kardon. However I have had non-color matching Panasonics so I know how they sound and perform.

Panasonic CQ-C7413U



Blaupunkt Bahama MP46


Alpine CDA9856


Nakamichi CD500


We do offer all of these head units as plug and play and ready to install into your BMW. We pre-wire the harness adapter and "powered" antenna adapter before they ship to make head unit installation as simple as possible.

Let me know if you guys have any questions.

12-11-2007, 04:05 PM
Bumped!. My display on my stock AM/FM cassette is dead so I'd like to find a simple AM/FM CD player with sub control. The problem is I don't like the different colors. Is there anyone who bought an aftermarket radio that matches the amber or orange displays in a BMW318? These above come close but I'd like to see if there is a better match. Please post pics. Thanks,

12-14-2007, 10:43 AM
I had a '97 318is back in 1999 and the Alpine units with double-illumination (green and amber) matched *perfectly* with the car's interior - even added an Alpine DSP separately (the one thats a spectrum analyzer) with amber lighting as well - looked incredibly stock.

12-14-2007, 04:56 PM
I have a Clarion pro audio head unit in my car, model # DXZ755MC. this model has been discontinued but the replacement models look just as good, have all the same features plus more. My brother is using a newer one in his mitsu. eclipse. I am posting pics of mine and will see if i can get pics of his in a couple of days. this headunit plays am/fm and is sirius sattelite ready. It plays mp3's, and wav files as well as regular cds. you can also rip up to one cd worth of music onto the headunit. you can control your sub and amp through the headunit, and I have my ipod and iphone hooked up to it as well. their are 5 or 6 different display colors plus you can create 3 of your own. the amber display is a really close match, at least as good as the others shown. I created a perfect match in amber, but accidentally erased it so I just use the amber display that came on it cause it is close enough for me. sorry the pics are a little crappy I will try to get better ones tomorrow in the daylight.

12-21-2007, 11:20 PM
Thanks odin. Well after cruising the internet for hours, I didn't find much. The aftermarket stereo's that look best in a 1996 BMW were made in the 90's. They were simple looking and most offered amber displays in the 90's. You can pick one up pretty cheap (if you find a working one) but no advanced features. The Alpines of today offer amber displays but have those stupid looking blue or green buttons. Most amber displays today have silver casings that don't match and the ones that you can change the display to the BMW amber color just look too obnoxious. (reminds me of those rice burners in the movie fast and the furious) Someone said Grundig makes a good match but couldn't find anything.
1st attachment - I found a daewoo stereo but who the heck would put that in a BMW?
2nd - MG Rover makes one that matches pretty well at $100 and that's pretty high powered but I don't know if it would fit.
3rd - I found a blaupunkt that would look good but the website didn't have the model #!

Of course, I could just buy a Becker head unit which would match but at $600? no thanks. So, I guess I'll go for a BMW CD43 and hope the volume control doesn't crap out on me.

12-22-2007, 01:24 PM
I'm actually putting all these up for myself so I can look back at one page as a reference.

Blaupunkt RDM126, 127, 128, 104 - approx $250 - $350

Nakamichi CD400, 500, 700ii units - approx $299- $1750 (display can change to amber)

JVC KD units - (display can change to amber) - approx $275 - $400 but looks like they are only sold in UK and europe so I don't know if these will work in USA?

12-29-2007, 03:40 PM
After looking everywhere for 2 months, I finally bought a brand new blaupunkt ACD2800. They don't make this model anymore and some have had problems with the buttons sticking but the lights are identical to the C33 and for $60, I couldn't pass it up. (I'll probably paint the grey button to make it match better).

01-21-2008, 08:39 PM
This is it in my car. Crummy camera. The flash makes the Blaupunkt lights look low, but they are almost the same intensity and color as the BMW lights, plus similar linear buttons. I'm done. On to the rear deck speakers.


03-02-2008, 08:49 AM

I recently did an upgrade from a C33 to a C43 and the sound difference was dramatic. I was wondering if you upgraded your amp or not? I have the OEM 200W amp and was considering an upgrade to the HK amp and eventually changing the speakers as well. Would love to hear from anyone who tried to maintain the stock look but made huge improvments in sound quality.