We look at the awesome Alpine CDE-133BT in depth.
Alpine claim this is the best way to find music fast, and on a 1-DIN unit we’d have to agree with ’em! Using the rotary button and Quick Search, you can easily browse through your many days worth of tuneage, according to artist, album, playlist, genre, podcast or just song title. Simple and effective; there’s nothing better on Mother Earth!
OK, most headunits come Bluetooth-ready these days, but Alpine’s latest creation gives you advanced Bluetooth options, including SMS text message alert, signal strength indicator, automatic phonebook update, alphabetic phonebook search and a battery charge indicator, to name a few. For Bluetooth calling, Alpine have even thrown in the all-important microphone for free, and that’s the sort of value-for-money gimmick we love at FC. Good, advanced Bluetooth, times all round!
DIRECT CONTROL MODE
The Alpine CDE-133BT is built for compatibility with both the iPhone and iPod (as well as Nokia), and you can play your music from your Apple device via the USB connection. Once connected, there’s no need to touch your iPhone or iPod again in the car, thanks to the Direct Control Mode that lets you select and browse music on your device, directly from the headunit, for both convenience and safety. You can also connect with your music through the timeless medium of CDs, or the equally trusty USB/ auxiliary ports.
For security, the fascia can be removed with just a quick tap of the discreet removal button on the bottom left. Job done.
You can customise both the sounds and looks of the CDE-133BT. Sound refining comes courtesy of subwoofer level and phase adjustment, high and low pass filters, a three-band parametric equaliser and loudness for starters that enable you to get the best out of your music. For looks, the fascia’s light colours can be adjusted to match your dash with green, blue, red or amber illumination available. Make it your own and make it the best, dear reader!
THE NEED TO KNOW
The CDE-133BT has a built-in 4x50W high power amplifier, one set of front/subwoofer selectable pre-outs (see Pre-outs: what’s that then?; below) and comes steering-wheel-remote- control-ready to bring you right in line with 2012.
PRE-OUTS: WHAT’S THAT THEN?
It might be obvious to some, but it certainly ain’t to others, so here goes: a pre-out simply passes the preamp signal to external amplification. Pre-outs are female connectors found for example at the back of headunits, and take male RCA leads, whose job it is to carry the pre-amplified signal to another part of your sound system. Each pre-out has two plugs, one for the left signal and one for the right. There we are. Consider yourself in the know!
If you like what you see and fancy taking your interest to the next level, ie the checkout, hit up Alpine Electronics to find a store and get this bundle of loveliness nestled nicely in your dash.