Scion xB: Audio & Entertainment Questions

PF_FlyerPF_Flyer Pennsylvania Furnace, PAMember Posts: 9,372
edited September 2014 in Scion
ipods, MP3, CD, DVD, satellite radio, or just plain old AM/FM... this is the place to discuss it!


  • benevolence6gcbenevolence6gc Member Posts: 19
    Hey does anyone know if the xb comes standard with an mp3 player? I noticed when I was driving my mom's xb that the deck had mp3 capabilities and was wondering if it was standard or not since I know she didn't pay extra for anything like that.
  • Kirstie_HKirstie_H EdmundsAdministrator Posts: 11,126
    The mp3 player isn't listed as one of the standard features - it just says "Pioneer premium brand stereo system" and a single CD player. Does she have the 6-CD changer or the satellite tuner? Maybe the mp3 is part of these upgrades.

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  • andergtrandergtr Member Posts: 101
    you basically just burn MP3 files onto a CD, and it reads them like anything else.

    the problem is that MP3 sound quality is awful. if you use something like roxio easy CD creator to convert MP3 files to WAV file format and then burn THAT onto a CD, the sound quality is light years better.

    the MP3 option is all nice and well, but i never use it because the sound quality is just horrendous.
  • andergtrandergtr Member Posts: 101
    i don't know the ins and outs of MP3 ripping. i know that i rip stuff from CD to MP3 at 128kbps and that on roxio, i have ripped these same MP3's onto a CD as a music project.

    compared to ripping the MP3's onto a CD as a DATA project, the sound quality is worlds better.

    i have zero use for the MP3 playback function. it's nice if you don't care about having anything near CD quality playback, but i have no problem just changing CD's.

    as i said, i don't know the mechanics of the whole ripping thing, but i do know what my ears tell me.
  • mikusmikus Member Posts: 109
    i don't know the ins and outs of MP3 ripping. i know that i rip stuff from CD to MP3 at 128kbps and that on roxio, i have ripped these same MP3's onto a CD as a music project.

    If what you saying is true, then Scion's factory CD player has really bad MP3 codec.

    All in all, 128kbps is the bare minimum for MP3, I encode all my stuff at 192 VBR with Lame codec.
  • radioduderadiodude Member Posts: 4
    Hey andergtr and anyone else that could help,
    I am sure this issue might be dead but mp3's use mathmatical logs to eliminate the freguencies and tones inaudiable to human ears. I am sure it is possible to hear differences between encoding levels (96KB/S to 128KB/S) but at lower conpression (192KB/S and above) and with a good ripping utility sound sound be very very close to wav with the human ear. Again, I am sure the issue was probably dead but I stumbed upon it while looking for the ansewer to this question...
    Does anyone know if the rear of the stock pioneer head units use the same IPBUS cable as the retail pioneers (or if a wiring harness converts to it) ... if so then everyone can buy aftermarket XM componets for like a fifth of the cost of the XM option at the dealer? Just an idea... oh and how much it the after market cruise control kit run w/o install? Thanks I am a newbie and I apreciate any help.
  • koleykoley Member Posts: 4
    Does the stock Pioneer stereo have an RDS tuner? I notice that it has a button labeled "text", but I cannot get any detailed information beyond that. RDS tuners display the name of most radio stations and the current song playing (at least in the Seattle area). Any info would be helpful.
  • blueiedgodblueiedgod Member Posts: 2,798
    I was checking the Scion site, to see prices. I actually liked it since 2001, when it was released in Japan as bB (Black Box), and I was there at the Amilux drooling over it.


    Anyway, the question is about the XM option. The radio in the xB is made by Pioneer. Scion charges $400 plus for the XM option, however, your local Circuit city/Best buy/Crutchfield have the Terk XM receiver for $49 and Pioneer adaptor for $49, which includes the antenna. Terk makes adaptors for Pioneer, Sony, Alpine, and Kenwood. These are not FM modulated adaptors, but rather hardwired for radios with XM contorls. The song/chanel info is displayed on the radio display. The XM controls on your radio control the Terk receiver. The Terk adaptor has a plug for CD-changer, so that you don't lose that option as well.


    I was wondering if the Terk adaptor for Pioneer woul djust plug into the Scion stock radio, thus offering XM radio for $100 instead of $400 plus.

  • darthclutchdarthclutch Member Posts: 18
    My xB came with the Pioneer upgrade, and the MP3 feature works just fine.

    Keep in mind that the MP3 format is compressed audio, and the more you compress the file, the worse it sounds. If you want really high quality MP3 CDs that maximize the capabilities of the Pioneer stereo, here is what you do:

    1. Don't use file sharing websites. The files have been compressed a lot for internet usage and a lot of them sound awful. I use iTunes for all MP3 formatting. You can set the preferences so that all your songs have mininimal compression and maximum sound quality. The down side is that you'll only be able to fit a mere 150-200 MP3s, instead of 400-500 low quality MP3s. When I first got into MP3s, I used a file sharing service, but the quality was unacceptable. iTunes is far superior, so I don't mind paying $1/song.

    2. I keep every album in a separate folder, with a number in front of each one and a number in front of each song, so that the MP3 player will play them in the right order. iTunes will not do this for you, so you have to copy all of your MP3s from the iTunes library, organize them in folders to your liking, and burn them to a data CD. This takes some time to set up, but the payoff is worth it in the long run. The Pioneer stereo recognizes the formatting & organization and the CDs are great backups so you don't have to keep all this stuff on your computer.

    I used to have an MP3 boombox until it broke (fell off a table onto a concrete floor) and I would select a CD and play it all day at work. A single disk would last the whole day.

    3. I haven't used a stock xB stereo, so I don't know how well they handle the MP3 format. The pioneer has some features built into it that are supposed to optimize the sound. Last night I was blasting a Led Zeppelin MP3 CD as loud as I could take it and the sound was fantastic. :D It didn't have that tin can sound to it. Keep in mind that the Pioneer upgrade is the ONLY audio upgrade that I have.
  • charlielhcharlielh Member Posts: 2
    Just got my Scion XB. Love it so far. However the radio is a Pioneer radio that says "Sat Ready". I am a current subscriber to Sirius Radio. How do I go about activating this radio? Or is that possible?. The dealer was unsure , Sirius was unsure. Help!.
  • mike187mike187 Member Posts: 2
    I just couldn't get myself to shell out $400 for the factory XM setup. I did want a clean (looking and sounding) XM setup though. Best receiver I found was the Sportscaster. It came with a remote and a car kit. I was able to fit it nicely inside the storage box below the head unit. Had to drill a few holes in the box, but it was no big deal. When not in use, I can shut the door. I used the aux port on the console. I did have to run a ground loop isolator -- lots of buzz if you don't. Sounds and looks great for less than $50. Hope this helps someone looking for an XM receiver!
  • howard2dot0howard2dot0 Member Posts: 45
    Has anyone installed a 10.2" ceiling-mount DVD player in a 08 xB?
    Can you still see the back in the rearview mirror?
    I am looking at Audiovox Shuttle system from Bestbuy and Circuitcity, but I don't know if it will block the rearview.
  • madxbownermadxbowner Member Posts: 4
    Has anyone experienced a problem with their CD playet not playing. When I toss in a new CD I still get a message saying "Load CD". Thanks
  • 2010xbowner2010xbowner Member Posts: 1
    I just purchased a 2010 Scion xB and I want to add xm to the stock Pioneer radio. What part or parts are needed (in dash, no wires showing, accessible with steering wheel controls)?
  • dave594dave594 Member Posts: 218
    You will need the XM tuner designed for the Pioneer head unit. I've seen it advertised for $278 on eBay. I just use my XM Roady receiver and self installed the antenna and mount, and use the Aux input to the receiver. Works great and it's a lot cheape. And I can move my receiver between my two cars and not have to pay for the additional subscription.
  • nberolznberolz Member Posts: 1
    I am thinking of buying a new xb and like it except for the sound system. It has the so-called pioneer upgrade, but I think it sounds weak and tinny. There is an Alpine premium audio upgrade that I would consider. Does anyone have this in their xb? How does it compare?


  • mint1mint1 Member Posts: 1
    I am looking to do the same thing, did you findout anything else?
  • scion_xbscion_xb Member Posts: 1
    I have an 08 Scion XB with the stock Pioneer radio. I love it and it sounds amazing. I would not waste the money on the upgrade.
  • charlielhcharlielh Member Posts: 2
    Go to Crutchfield's or These guys are great.
  • chargergirl111chargergirl111 Member Posts: 1
    I'm wondering how to use the "text" function on my radio.
  • sobe232sobe232 Member Posts: 1
    I have just purchased a 2006 xB with stock radio. My problem is I cannot find anything on the web pertaining to operating instructions. It has a feature
    "folder" which I don't understand and can't seem to figure out, can anyone advise how this is used, I am using an iPod with the console plug in.
  • irehn09irehn09 Member Posts: 1
    I would try to replace the fuse. Sometimes they just go bad, and the car kind of goes crazy.
  • madxbownermadxbowner Member Posts: 4
    Thanks. I'll try that.
This discussion has been closed.