i was a little confused on that subject too, but i think that the deal is that there are both an underseat changer and a in-dash changer available. The in-dash costs a little bit more, but personally I like the idea of having it in-dash rather than under a seat. I don't know about your Alpine question though.
There is an "in-dash" CD changer that technically will work on the EX...but apparently the proper plastic "surround" piece doesn't exist. So you have to use the "under seat" CD changer. And by the way, I'm pretty sure it is an Alpine changer with the Honda name on it. I installed one in my EX-L over a month ago...and I'm pretty sure it said Alpine on it. BTW...it works great.
uh oh! i "ordered" the pilot with 6-disc in-dash changer, but they said ok. also, while i was at the dealer it said that it came standard on the EX. Were still waiting for a response from our Dealer Rep. BTW thanx for saving me a lot of trouble!
The dealer said it was OK to install the in-dash changer? Do you have an LX or an EX? There was a thread devoted to this topic before (I think on this site). One EX purchaser ordered the in-dash changer for his EX. The dealer attempted to install it....and it worked....but the "cosmetic" covering doesn't exist. They checked the "books" and it claimed neither the "in-dash" or the "under seat" changer were compatible with the EX. After some postings back and forth....I suggested he show them the instructions posted on the collegehillshonda site which gives "under-seat" instructions for NAV and non-NAV. Obviously if you have a NAV system, you don't have an LX. After pointing this out to the dealer, they reluctantly tried the install again, this time with the "under-seat"...and it worked just fine. I've done the same "under-seat" install on my EX-L and that also went perfectly. I guess it's possible that the plastic piece now exists that allows the "in-dash" to be installed in an EX....but I doubt it.
The pilots do not come with factory changers ... Mine is the standard double DIN CD/Tape head unit ... no RES or NAV ... Swapping head units is a simple affair especially between factory head units. Example being a CD changer head unit from a Honda Accord with steering wheel mounted controls can be put in the Pilot. If you are replacing the Double DIN ... with a single DIN head unit, the remaining space can be used to install another single DIN unit such as an in dash DVD player linked to an LCD monitor somewhere else in the car. The possibilities are really limitless bound only by your imagination and budget. Aftermarket head units are also viable alternatives and the ratio between cost and what you get for your money is better. The only part I am unsure about is linking an aftermarket head unit with the steering mounted controls. I haven't dealt with that before. Here are some pics of my other car that can give you an idea of what you can do with the double DIN space ...
Don't know if I really answered you question though ... but what the other forum members say sounds correct. The plastic trim surround piece may not fit for the Pilot, although the actual head unit will fit and work. One probably just hasn't been made yet. An under the seat, glovebox, or center console install would probably be the easiest.