Showing 7 reviews for Alpine TUA-T550HD

Customer Review Summary for Alpine TUA-T550HD
Average Customer Rating is 3.1 out of 5 stars:
3.1
based on 7 Reviews
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Rating Distribution:
5 star:
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29%
4 star:
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14%
3 star:
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14%
2 star:
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29%
1 star:
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14%
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Average Attributes Rating:
Durability
3.3
Value
2.3
Features
3.7
Design
3.0
Usability
3.0
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Quick Comparison:
The most helpful favorable review: The most helpful critical review:
great unit

Can be hooked up in line with Sirus radio.

VS
Alpine TUA-T550HD Not Ready For Prime Time

I put a complete Alpine system in my car. From HU through Signal Processor Then over to JL Audio D Class Amp & Speakers. I pulled out all the stops, I got it ALL. CDA-9886 Head Unit. KCE-400BT Blue Tooth, TUA-T550HD HD Receiver, PXA-H100 Imprint Processor, and an AI-Net XM Radio Module with the signals routed into a JL Audio HD900/5 D class amp hooked to 2 sets of JL Audio Separates. 1 set C5-650 (Rear Fill) and one set of ZR-650CSi (Front Doors) The amp's 5th channel drives a pair of JL Audio 12W3 Subs. This review will focus on the TUA-550HD HD Receiver. I was really looking forward to being capable of receiving HD radio in the car. When I installed everything I was having a VERY rough time getting any music from the HD Radio. With all the AI-Net boxes I have in my AI-Net daisy chain it took me nearly 2 hours of trial and error hooking the equipment all up in different combo's before I got radio source and all my other AI-Net box sources to work. The manual only shows how to hook it up to a AI-Net head unit by itself. No mention of what to do if you are also using an Imprint processor or other AI-Net sources or a combo of the above. So I finally am getting Radio White Noise with everything hooked up. I search for FM stations in the Analog FM band and I get only a few stations to lock in. Hmm the 9886 Head unit FM receiver received a ton more stations than the HD Radio. So I go to my favorite radio station who supposedly has 2 HD sub channels. I'm waiting for some kind of confirmation that I am receiving HD... Nothing... Turns out the reception is so horrible on the receiver that I was not getting a strong enough antenna signal to receive the HD sub channels. I live about 17 Miles from Downtown Chicago and have NEVER in any car I have ever owned had bad reception even when I was 35+ miles from the city. So reception was awful. Now I have to admit my car's antenna is inside my windshield glass and is not a standard whip antenna. Still I had no problems receiving many many stations from the CDA-9886's internal receiver. So I decided to buy an amplified antenna and give it a try. I hook up the amplified antenna and mount it where the instructions say I will have best results. I run the power wire for the amp to the back of the 9886 and hook it up to the power antenna lead on the 9886 so when the radio is on the antenna/amp is also, when the radio is off like while listening to a CD the antenna/amp will also be off. I turn everything on and have no reception at all. Turns out the TUA-T550HD does not cause the 9886's power antenna lead to go hot. So The antenna/amp was off. I pulled the HU and moved the power antenna's power lead over to the amp turn on wire. So now whenever the 9886 is on so is the antenna/amp. So now I have some reception in normal FM. Better than my car's antenna but still not enough signal to receive most HD sub channels. an nowhere NEAR as good as the internal receiver in the 9886 on it's own. So this thing not only cost ~$150 it gives me horrible reception. i cannot even listen to some of my favorite Analog legacy FM stations with this receiver with a better antenna than the 9886's built in receiver. Turns out the only HD sub channel stations I receive are from near by spanish stations. Nothing else. and only half of the normal legacy FM stations I get with the 9886's tuner. This is the First Alpine product I would have to tell people to steer clear of. You may have better luck if you live IN the big city, but this HD Receiver is NOT ready for the Burbs. Save your money unless you live in the City.

Most Helpful Customer Reviews:
May 9, 2011 great unit
Review by
Gary from Assonet, MA
Overall
Durability
Value
Features
Design
Usability
Can be hooked up in line with Sirus radio.
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September 20, 2010 Great Value - HD Tuner
Review by
Kim from Houston, TX
Overall
Durability
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This has been an excellent HD tuner since day one. It runs off my Alpine CDA-117 receiver very well. Very pleased with the unit and Sonic Electronix service.
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June 26, 2010 Alpine TUA-T550HD Not Ready For Prime Time
Review by
Nick from Schaumburg, IL
Overall
Durability
Value
Features
Design
Usability
I put a complete Alpine system in my car. From HU through Signal Processor Then over to JL Audio D Class Amp & Speakers. I pulled out all the stops, I got it ALL. CDA-9886 Head Unit. KCE-400BT Blue Tooth, TUA-T550HD HD Receiver, PXA-H100 Imprint Processor, and an AI-Net XM Radio Module with the signals routed into a JL Audio HD900/5 D class amp hooked to 2 sets of JL Audio Separates. 1 set C5-650 (Rear Fill) and one set of ZR-650CSi (Front Doors) The amp's 5th channel drives a pair of JL Audio 12W3 Subs. This review will focus on the TUA-550HD HD Receiver.

I was really looking forward to being capable of receiving HD radio in the car. When I installed everything I was having a VERY rough time getting any music from the HD Radio. With all the AI-Net boxes I have in my AI-Net daisy chain it took me nearly 2 hours of trial and error hooking the equipment all up in different combo's before I got radio source and all my other AI-Net box sources to work. The manual only shows how to hook it up to a AI-Net head unit by itself. No mention of what to do if you are also using an Imprint processor or other AI-Net sources or a combo of the above. So I finally am getting Radio White Noise with everything hooked up. I search for FM stations in the Analog FM band and I get only a few stations to lock in. Hmm the 9886 Head unit FM receiver received a ton more stations than the HD Radio. So I go to my favorite radio station who supposedly has 2 HD sub channels. I'm waiting for some kind of confirmation that I am receiving HD... Nothing... Turns out the reception is so horrible on the receiver that I was not getting a strong enough antenna signal to receive the HD sub channels. I live about 17 Miles from Downtown Chicago and have NEVER in any car I have ever owned had bad reception even when I was 35+ miles from the city. So reception was awful. Now I have to admit my car's antenna is inside my windshield glass and is not a standard whip antenna. Still I had no problems receiving many many stations from the CDA-9886's internal receiver. So I decided to buy an amplified antenna and give it a try. I hook up the amplified antenna and mount it where the instructions say I will have best results. I run the power wire for the amp to the back of the 9886 and hook it up to the power antenna lead on the 9886 so when the radio is on the antenna/amp is also, when the radio is off like while listening to a CD the antenna/amp will also be off. I turn everything on and have no reception at all. Turns out the TUA-T550HD does not cause the 9886's power antenna lead to go hot. So The antenna/amp was off. I pulled the HU and moved the power antenna's power lead over to the amp turn on wire. So now whenever the 9886 is on so is the antenna/amp. So now I have some reception in normal FM. Better than my car's antenna but still not enough signal to receive most HD sub channels. an nowhere NEAR as good as the internal receiver in the 9886 on it's own. So this thing not only cost ~$150 it gives me horrible reception. i cannot even listen to some of my favorite Analog legacy FM stations with this receiver with a better antenna than the 9886's built in receiver. Turns out the only HD sub channel stations I receive are from near by spanish stations. Nothing else. and only half of the normal legacy FM stations I get with the 9886's tuner. This is the First Alpine product I would have to tell people to steer clear of. You may have better luck if you live IN the big city, but this HD Receiver is NOT ready for the Burbs. Save your money unless you live in the City.
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January 4, 2010 Xcellant pick
Review by
LANE 23 from SULLIVAN MISSOURI
Overall
Durability
Value
Features
Design
Usability
This HD box has no cons that I have found, it is a very easy and quick hook up, LOVE IT AND HIGHLY RECOMMEND IT FOR ALL THE ALPINE USERS!!!!!
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October 13, 2009 Dissapointed
Review by
Jesse M. from Mountain Home, ID
Overall
Durability
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I have the CDA-9886 HU which is awesome so I wanted to add HD radio, Setting up the AI net is complicated, there are 3 switches on the bottom of the HU which need to be configured and only the HU manual mentions them, not the HD tuner manual. My TUA-550HD tuner has the same problem as a previous reviewer, 25% of the time it will display radio frequency but no sound. So I have to turn off the car and restart it. I have a few AM/FM stations 45 miles from where I live and it picks them up. For the price compared to the competitors this tuner is junk. I maintain radio's for a living, do professional car audio installs, and am an active HAM. Wait until Alpine releases a newer model.
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May 18, 2009 It works, usually
Review by
bdander from Washington, DC
Overall
Durability
Value
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Design
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It generally works as you would expect. Sometimes however, when I turn on the head-unit, the radio is completely silent, and sometimes it is not recognized at all, the standard tuner is the only option available on the head unit. To get it to work, I usually need to stop the car, and turn it off. That seems to reset everything. Just turning the radio itself off and turning it back on does not fix it. Only turning off the car entirely (and thus shutting off power to the unit). This somewhat of an annoyance, it usually works. Only 10 percent of the time do I have this problem, and restarting the car always fixes it. The most annoying thing is to discover it is not working when you are on the freeway, you are kind of stuck, unless you pull off the freeway so you can restart your car. Also the unit seems needlessly large, I don't know why these Alpine add-ons are always so large. It takes up half the space under my set. Low score on design. Sonic Electronix was very helpful in the placing of my order.
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January 25, 2009 alpine hd tuner
Review by
BJ from Spring, TX
Overall
Durability
Value
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Don't buy. When it works it sounds great, but randomly on vehicle startup the tuner shows a station is tuned in, but no sound. The Alpine head unit works on IPOD and CD. Must turn off vehicle to clear fault, turning off radio does not clear fault. have tried 2 units and both do the same thing. Alpine has no clue as to the problem let alone the fix!

*****
NOTE: We believe this to be an installation error. The unit was not purchased from us, but if it was, we would provide technical assistance for installing it correctly.
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