Alpine vs Kenwood
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If you love cool music with a good blend of the highs and lows, you need to listen to music from audiophile brands. But how do you choose the best without doing background checks and balances? This article shares more information about Alpine and Kenwood to help you decide which one to buy.

History Of Alpine

A leading manufacturer of sophisticated audio and electronic automobile products such as in-dash compact disc changers, CD changers, CD head units, amplifiers, multifunctional audio systems, speakers, among others, Alpine Electronics was established in1967.

Alpine audio

The company started as a joint venture between Alps Electric Company and Motorola Inc.

The company was initially called Alps Motorola Company, Ltd and had headquarters in Tokyo, Japan.

The company’s main focus was the manufacture of electrical products for the automotive market. In this line, they introduced their first product, an eight-track cartridge tape player, in 1968. A year later, Alps Motorola Company Ltd started car radio manufacturing.

In the early 1970s, the company introduced a lightweight, portable eight-track cartridge tape player – Handy-8. The player became very successful until the mid-1970s, when the sales began to drop. At this time, the company entered the automotive audio market by exporting tape decks to Europe and North America to counter the shrinking sales in Japan.

While attending their first consumer electronics show, the company introduced the 7206 AM/FM Cassette Tape Player and the 7308 AM/FM Cassette Tape Player soon afterward. The company continued research on digitalized electronics and introduced the 7128 and 7308 electronically tuned radios in 1980.

In 1981, the company worked jointly with Honda Motor Corporation to produce the world’s largest gyrocator. It then introduced the 3015 computerized graphic equalizers in 1982. This was the first such product globally, earning the company the Japanese “Good Design” Award in the year.

History Of Kenwood

Kenwood, one of the largest and most successful consumer-oriented electronics companies in Japan, was incorporated in 1946 in Nagano as Kasuga Radio Company.

Kenwood audio devices

The company made a massive step into the consumer-electronics market when it introduced the first high-frequency transformer in 1949. The company continued to excel in innovation through the 1950s and had another breakthrough in research when they manufactured the first F.M. tuner in Japan in 1957.

During this period, other items produced by the company characterized by intense research and innovation include measuring and precision test instruments such as voltmeters, oscilloscopes, and regulated D.C. power supplies. At this time, the managers changed the company’s name to Trio-Kenwood Corporation.

Trio-Kenwood expanded rapidly, and the management moved to establish Kenwood Electronics, Inc. in Los Angeles, California, in 1963. It, therefore, became the first Japanese firm to operate in the United States under its name.

The company continued to rise, and by the mid-1970s, it had captured over 70 percent of the amateur radio market in the country. In 1976, the company introduced the first D.C. amplifier. It became the first amplifier with dual power sources.

In 1977, Trio-Kenwood released a 40-watt receiver. The receiver was marked at a price less than $300 and outsold all the other models over the following two years.

In 1978, Trio-Kenwood designed, manufactured, and patented Hi-Speed amplifiers that responded nearly instantaneously to high-frequency inputs, introduced Variable Bandwidth Tuning that narrowed the I.F. passband patented a Pulse Count Detector tuner.

The company excelled and captured every major award for F.M. tuners in 1978. The KD-500 turntable was named the best of its class during the year. The same trend continued over 1979 when the company introduced the first amplifier with multiple stage power sources and the first Liquid Crystal Display.

General Specifications

  Alpine Kenwood
AM/FM tuner Yes Yes
Touchscreen Yes No
Bluetooth Yes Yes
USB port Yes Yes
Shallow mount Yes No
SiriusXM satellite radio compatible Yes no
Preamp outputs Yes Yes
Compatible with Siri Eye Free Yes No
Dual camera input Yes No

 

Sound Quality

The Alpine and Kenwood brands have invested heavily in research and innovation over the years. It is, therefore, not very easy to make a head-by-head comparison and still come up with a stiffening winner. However, there are some little.

Alpine Sound Quality

Alpine delivers features such as audio enhancement and excellent audio control on the head unit. These features use the Alpine Tune application. You can easily tune the app to deliver very high sound quality if you properly optimize the app system. 

Kenwood Sound Quality

Like Alpine, Kenwood has many years of experience producing high-quality audio equipment for audiophiles. The sound quality you get from Kenwood, therefore, clearly stands out. 

If you are looking for good-sounding car speakers, Kenwood makes some of the best and high-quality speakers for every car. You can comfortably replace your old standard speakers with Kenwood, such as the Kenwood Excelon speakers, and be sure to get an excellent sound performance. 

Pricing 

While pricing is an excellent way to determine what products you take home, it is not the best way to assess the quality of products.

This is because companies use different pricing policies, and it is easier to find a low-quality product that has been priced higher or much higher than a better quality counterpart.

Pricing For Alpine Speakers 

Alpine speakers are a bit pricier than any other brand in the same class. Therefore, it would be best to consider the value you get before deciding to replace your factory car speakers with Alpine. 

Pricing For Kenwood Speakers 

Kenwood speakers are priced more favorably than other brands in the same category. Also, the prices vary by the different parameters. 

Design 

Alpine Product Designs

The company excels in producing quality speakers, and the designs are equally never disappointing. 

Kenwood Product Designs

On the other hand, Kenwood also produces speakers and audio equipment that have undergone more incredible design. Therefore, the products are made with a touch of critical design that makes them more appealing.  

Alpine ILX W650 Vs Kenwood DMX7706S

The Alpine ILX W650 is a 7″ Mechless Double Din Receiver with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto. The device is highly responsive and easier to control. Besides, it comes with a shallow mounting chassis design that helps you save space. 

SALE!!
Alpine iLX-W650 7" Mech-Less Receiver Compatible...
  • digital media receiver with AM/FM tuner (does not play CDs)
  • shallow-mount chassis design (2-7/16" deep)
  • touchscreen swipe controls
Kenwood DMX7706S 6.95" Digital Media Touchscreen...
  • Two camera inputs provide users the ability to add both a front and rear camera for enhanced driver safety and...
  • Two camera inputs provide users the ability to add both a front and rear camera for enhanced driver safety and...

The unit supports Apple Car Play and Android Auto, a great bonus, especially for users who prefer mobile connectivity.

Also, the receiver connects both via USB and Bluetooth and is seamlessly integrated with GPS and Sirius XM. 

Other key features of the Alpine ILX W650 include: 

  • Full Digital Media Receiver Capabilities 
  • Standard AM/FM Radio Tuner
  • External microphone for voice command/phone calls
  • Carries entire CTA 2006 compliance 
  • Designed to pair with Alpine KTA 450 amplifier units 

Pros 

  • Compact 
  • Easy to install 
  • Compatible with Apple Carplay and Android Auto 
  • Highly responsive 
  • Saves space

Cons 

  • Premium product with a high price tag 

On the other hand, Kenwood DMX7706S has a fantastic sound quality with a gorgeous and sharp display. Similar to the Alpine counterpart, the receiver from Kenwood uses both Apple Carplay and Android Auto. It also comes with Android quick charging to help you charge your phone faster.

Other key features include: 

  • Digital multimedia player with AM/FM tuner 
  • Built-in amplifier 
  • Bass boost and loudness controls 
  • Bluetooth enabled 6.95″ clear resistive touchscreen display 

Pros

  • You can listen to any music format 
  • Fast startup stereo
  • It gives extra oomph to factory speakers 

Cons

  • Complicated install for Android Auto 
  • You can’t listen to H.D. radio 

So, Which Is Better? 

Alpine still excels in the production of fantastic sound quality. Therefore, the Alpine ILX W650 is most sought after compared to Kenwood DMX7706S due to the latest digital technology it brings to car entertainment. 

Kenwood Vs. Alpine Vs. Pioneer

Kenwood makes home and car audio products for a broader range of markets. The Upper range of devices from Kenwood comes with 24 Bit Sound DAC while the Lower range is mostly at 8 Bit Sound DAC with 3 Band EQ. some of the characteristics of Kenwood products and brands include:

  • Quality and durable 
  • A wide range of features and options offered 
  • Good customer service 
  • Warranty program offered
  • Expensive 

Pioneer is a leading brand in the home and car audio industry and has been in the market for decades. It comes mainly with the 24 Bit sound DAC and is very loud. Some of the critical characteristics of the brand include: 

  • Uncompromised quality 
  • Great after-sale service 
  • Excellent performance 
  • Expensive 

On the other hand, Alpine also makes the same 24 Bit sound DAC as Kenwood and Pioneer. The amps are highly reliable and do not compromise on quality.

Although they are never loud, they have a better frequency balance and compensation for cheap speakers. Here are some of the critical characteristics of Alpine: 

  • Reasonable price 
  • Superior quality products 
  • Unique sound technologies 
  • A wider range of features and options
  • Warranty program 
  • Great customer service 

Conclusion

Both Alpine and Kenwood produce versatile and technologically adapted audio devices. Whether you choose Alpine or Kenwood depends on factors such as your budget, taste, and connectivity options. Read the description and make an informed decision before settling for either of the two vintage brands. Before you go, you may also be interested in Kenwood vs JVC.