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I was looking at the Crutchfield website and came across the Aplpine CHA-S634 CD changer that also supports MP3 CDs. It says that its AINet, but that it can be used with an M-bus head unit with an adapter. I understand that an additional adapter is required to make standard M-bus Apline products work with Honda products, but does anyone know if this would work with the standard (not Bose) MDX head unit (i.e. using both adapters)? Any comments are welcome.

-Aaron
 

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I just used a Peripheral HONIL adapter for my Alpine CHM-S601 CD changer and my 2002 Red Rock base model. Probably would work for you, too.
 

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AcuraMDX2002 said:
I just used a Peripheral HONIL adapter for my Alpine CHM-S601 CD changer and my 2002 Red Rock base model. Probably would work for you, too.
I think the difference is that the S601 is already an M-bus changer. I guess I'm specifically asking if anyone has installed any Ai-Net Alpine changer in the MDX, or some other Acura/Honda, and if there were any problems.
 

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CHA-S634 works!

I can positively confirm, as of this morning, that the CHA-S634 changer works in the following configuration:

- 2002 Base+Navigation
- HONIL adapter from Peripheral Electronics
- KCA-130B M-Bus to AI-Net adapter from Alpine

Solution cost is about $290 plus installation: $230 for the changer (new via ebay), $50 for HONIL (new, various internet sources), $10 for the KCA-130B from local Alpine dealer.

The changer mounts just fine under the driver's seat (to the floor) using the mounting brackets supplied with the changer.

There is a switch inside the front cover of the changer which you have to switch to the "2" position (M-Bus) for the changer to be recognized. Indeed, I found that if I connected up the changer to the head unit with the switch in the wrong position, the head unit would never recognize it - would get "Err" on the head unit display. So I had to power everything down, disconnect the HONIL, then reconnect the assembly with the selector in the right position.

One caveat: this isn't the most user-friendly interface if you have, as I do, CD-R's with a couple hundred MP3's on them. The head unit display is limited to two digits - no alphanumerics, no nothing else. However, I have confirmed that it can play/address over 100 tracks, the counter simply wrapping around. Also, if you want to get to a specific track, you just need to keep hitting "+". Finally, the shuffle feature appears to be limited to a single CD-R, not the entire stack.

So the best use model for this setup seems to be to burn one playlist per CD - kids, classical, kick up the heels road-trip music, etc. - and let shuffle do the rest.

RS

P.S. Thanks again to DigitalMDX for posting the pictures on head unit removal - they were extremely useful!
 

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Thanks for the report on this changer. I am considering it as an upgrade when my X arrives. Quick question about playlists for you. Does the changer support playlists (ala winamp) or some other style or does it simply play them in the order they were written to the cd?

TIA.
 

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Again, no playlists. Just shuffle within a given CD, whole thing or nothing.

Obviously the AiNet protocol is a superset of the M-Bus protocol. Alpine's newer, high-end AiNet-based head units all support "CD Text" and some claim "disk title memory", both features which occur on the CHA-S634 box and manual. Stuck with M-Bus's limitations on the Acura factory head unit, we don't get those features, just disk and track numbers.

At any rate, the enormous capacity of this changer and the ease of the upgrade make it a huge win for me.

RS
 

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Thanks for the good information. I notice that Alpine also has a display/controller made to work with that (and other) cd changer. http://www.alpine1.com/html/D2_n_1_n_n.html Does anyone know if this is possible to use this, in addition to the setup you've already got, so you can both a) use the steering wheel controls and b) have the advantage of a full display and the additional controls you get here?

Any help is appreciated.
 
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