What to do with an almost 10 year old car? Most people will just sell it and upgrade but that’ll mean THOUSANDS of dollars for a new car with not that many new features. So instead, I bought a refurb Rosen unit from ebay for $210 and $20 for the backup camera, and decided to try to install it myself! WHOOHOO! And yes, I know there are a lot of newer car stereos in the market but I prefer the stock look. And yes, I know this unit has a some flaws, like not being able to customize it the way Alpine or Pioneer would allow you to, but I”m willing to live with those flaws.
Overall, I love the Rosen unit. It is a HUGE upgrade from stock, and the sound is actually better in the stock speakers than before. WIN WIN!
Here’s the Rosen Support Video:
For me, step one is to install the backup camera. The backup camera was from ebay. It is routed through the license plate light:
I tapped the reverse lights and just took my solder iron and heat the existing wire to remove the plastic.
Pros: No need to run new wire from the front.
Con: The camera only has power when it’s in reverse. I wouldn’t be able to see the back while I’m driving. No big deal since I won’t be towing anything with the Civic anyways.
I ran the backup camera cable to the bottom front on the driver side since it’s simpler. I then realized I forgot to run an additional cable for the back trigger. This will let your unit jump into backup camera mode when you’re in Reverse. I took my spool of RED wire and then ran it along with the backup camera wire and tapped it into the same RED wire that powers the camera.
The entire install took about 4 hours of garage work so do plan on taking your time. Read a LOT of other peoples’ DIY’s on the Civic forums, including the Prius forums and Toyota Corolla forums as well. Many thanks to other people posting their DIYs.
1) Bluetooth pairs to iPhone 6 automatically and sounds good (Pandora and Spotify). Bluetooth also paired to wife’s iPhone 5. If both phones are in the car, first come first serve 🙂
2) Video plays fine, even while driving. Tested DVDs and VCDs. Turning your engine on will continue to play last area of DVD.
3) Backup camera takes about 3-5 seconds to activate, which is very quick compared to other after market models I’ve seen.
4) Radio stations work just fine, if not better than stock in terms of clarity, ease of use, searching and scanning stations.
5) Mini usb needs an adapter cable, which is annoying. Thought of ripping it out and then hard mounting a full size usb adapter in the same spot. We’ll see if I get to it. Other than that, works fine. Double click DVD to activate USB and the unit will try to read it.
6) Navigation and GPS works just fine. I have it wire tied and mounted directly on top of the unit itself, INSIDE the dash. Didn’t want to run new cabling around. Works just fine. Turned off voice speed limit alert, and also tweaked it for 130% instead. Although I can’t really see the screen well when it’s sunny. Here’s my quick solution for that: