The Car CD Player Deathwatch

Edmunds.comEdmunds.com Member, Administrator, Moderator Posts: 10,138
edited September 2014 in General

imageThe Car CD Player Deathwatch

With the rising popularity of digital music and streaming services, some automakers are starting to leave CD players out of cars.

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Comments

  • lsiiilsiii Member Posts: 15
    I have had a few cars over the last 4-5 years, and haven't used the CD player in any of them. Ever since I used Bluetooth Audio and/or my iPod in the USB jack I haven't looked back.
  • cygnus_x1cygnus_x1 Member Posts: 11
    It's a sad trend that young people are settling for less and less in just about every aspect of their life because they don't know any better. Then again, the music they listen to is so bad I guess the sound quality doesn't really matter anyways.
    Car makers can take the CD player out of their cheap girlie cars as long as companies like Acura and Lexus keep putting DVD drives in their cars. There's no way to get high quality surround audio from an MP3 and people who want good quality audio in their cars will pay for the optical drive.
  • rwatsonrwatson Member Posts: 144
    I'm with cygnus_x1 on this. Sound quality is not an issue now, only size and convenience. This is perfect for the auto industry of today where the consumer thinks "quality" depends on mass-manufactured electronic gadgetry. The current trend in vehicles seem to hinge on the notion that if you keep loading the center stack with devices that make the LCD feel "trendy" and "smart," they'll never notice the shortcomings of the car. It appears to be working. The more ADHD, the better the sales.

    I have an Ipod. I loaded it with songs - close to 300 I guess. Sounded like garbage. Proof the majority drag their knuckles after all. The battery lasted a whole 3.5 years. That's when I found out they want you to mail it in for a replacement without your songs and pay them $80. It's all for the sake of smaller and lighter stuff that suffers in total quality. The electronic gadget industry aren't counting on the fact that quite a number of young "audiophiles" (the kind who actually sit and listen to music, as opposed to those who just dance around when they hear their favorite computer generated beat and auto-tuned Disney channel celebrity) are actually discovering the sound quality of vinyl LPs. They're buying these relics up and actually noticing what I've always noticed. Of course, they'll always be the minority because the masses are conditioned to marketing of "convenience." The consumer pays too much in the end because it's more profitable to just stick Chinese made junk that makes us feel smart into these underwhelming, low quality, top-dollar vehicles. Sounds like today's politics.
  • ne_blackshirtsne_blackshirts Member Posts: 56
    @ Cygnus_x1 & rwatson: I just turned 31 and never really took too the whole IPod craze but my wife has one so I've loaded some songs from ITunes and the quality sucks. I hate the fact that the only reason this trend of mobile music is taking off is be
  • banna_smithbanna_smith Member Posts: 1
    I still use the CD player inside my car because I found that the sound quality is much better on the CD than it is from my IPod. You can definitely feel the bass better and hear the instruments better on a CD, too.
  • shatnershatner Member Posts: 176
    Well this sucks. MP3s sound like crap, but most people don't notice on their Bose stereos because they sound like crap too!

    I would actually not buy a car that I could not fit an aftermarket CD player in nicely.
  • shatnershatner Member Posts: 176
    I still miss the days when most factory stereos came in the standardized sizes so you could just pull them right out and upgrade them without custom face plates. The Scion Tc still has them, can't think of any other cars that do!
  • greenponygreenpony Chicago, ILMember Posts: 531
    Hold on a second. Cars are noisy places. Tires, engine, exhaust, wind, horns, emergency vehicles... It's not really the optimal place to be listening to high fidelity audio. With all the NOISE, you miss all the subtleties of a good piece of music. And here you all are, arguing about the difference in quality between mp3s, CDs, and records, as if it matters when you're slogging through a major city rush hour or cruising at 80 on the interstate. To listen to music, to really listen to and appreciate music, you ought not to be distracted with something as demanding as, oh I don't know, OPERATING A MOTOR VEHICLE. That's what your home stereo is for.
  • agentorangeagentorange Member Posts: 893
    I'm largely with greenpony. Cars are too noisy to tell the difference between a CD and a low-compression MP3. Now a highly compressed MP3 will sound like crap even with somebody running a chainsaw in your other ear. Sadly, many of today's youth don't actually know what uncompressed music sounds like. What torques me is that not two motor manufacturers treat accessing music on a USB stick or iPod the same way. At least with CDs you know what you are going to get.
  • cygnus_x1cygnus_x1 Member Posts: 11
    Just to add to my original post, I bought a new Acura TL yesterday with the ELS sound system. You can definitely hear the difference between a DVD audio disc and an MP3 @320 coming through the USB port. Totally night and day. Even a CD can't hold a candle to DVD-A.
    As far as car noise, at 80mph my TL is quiet enough that even at moderate volumes the music drowns out any external noise. A quiet car shows refinement and I wouldn't settle for less.
    Until they figure out how to get DVD-A onto a flash drive, I'm sure optical drives will be around for a while.
  • shatnershatner Member Posts: 176
    You can get great quality sound in a convertible if you put enough clean power in it, and I don't mean just a lot of bass.

    Say no to Bose!
  • rhiansuarezrhiansuarez Member Posts: 1
    Well the CD players are slowly fading its popularity, people these days prefer players that can be inserted with their portable stuffs in the car like USB's, Mp3 players, phones, ipod and many more...
  • ne1butu2ne1butu2 Member Posts: 21
    It's hillarious that "audiophiles" now hold CDs in such high esteem. In the 80s, they were squawking that there was no way to get the detail out of a CD that you could get from vinyl or reel-to-reel. Frankly, CDs are outdated today because you can only get 12 or so tracks onto them. No one listens to music that way anymore. For the hundred or so audiophiles that still exist in the world that hem and haw over vinyl vs CD vs Compressed, they are not the people that any mass audio brand caters to anymore. Even McIntosh Labs, the pinnacle of the audio world, has capitulated and now offers airplay devices for their home systems. Audio manufacturers will attempt to improve their upconversion techniques to squeeze all the detail out of compressed audio that they can. Regardless compressed music is here to stay. CDs are on their way out. And fast.
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