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Discussion Starter #1
I called General Manager for Honda in my area today and complained about the poor reception/sound quality of the factory Honda stereo in my Pilot. I told her that had I known about the poor sound quality/reception problem that the service manager said he has had a lot of complaints about, I would have passed on the Pilot for another vehicle. She told me she'd look into it and see what she could do. I asked if they could put in an FM booster to at least help with the static problem, but after checking into it, she said that was not possible because such a booster would cause "other problems with the system." She could not explain what that meant, but just told me that was what a local stereo company told her.

Have any of you complained to your local dealers about the poor stereo sound quality and the poor reception problem? And have your dealers done anything to rectify the problem for you?

Have any of you installed any sort of FM boosters for the anntena?

Aside from the poor reception, the sound still sounds "foggy" despite playing with the settings. This must be a speaker issue as well as the fact (as I've heard), that the vehicle is an SUV rather than a sedan. So, have any of you rectified this problem with new speakers or other equipment? If so, what is the most economical way to go and is there any specific equipment that is recommended to be used to improve the sound quality in the Pilot?

As it stands now, the general manager told me to try out a different Pilot for a few days to see if the problem is specific to my Pilot or just a Pilot problem in general. She wants to research the matter and said we'll "go from there." So, I'd really like to know if any of your dealers have upgraded your equipment or added an external antenna to rectify the problem for you.

Thanks for the info. I will let you know what happens on my end.

DeniseT
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I don't have any problems with my radio reception because I have XM, but my husband had a look of dread when he saw that the antenna was built into the window. He said this type of antenna was notorious for poor reception.

My .02.
 

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I've noticed my radio stations crackle a good bit. But coming from my old truck the Pilot's radio is a huge step up. (87' GMC Jimmy with 2 dash speakers). I have wanted to look into an FM booster. Preferably one with an on/off button.

I can tell you that my Girlfriend's Civic picks up stations much better than the Pilot. She can get stations down in DC clear and I can't.
 

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DeniseT said:
Have any of you complained to your local dealers about the poor stereo sound quality and the poor reception problem? And have your dealers done anything to rectify the problem for you?

Have any of you installed any sort of FM boosters for the anntena?




There must be something else at work here with your Pilot - My reception is very good - as a matter of fact, the best of any vehicle I've owned. Living close to Madison, I pick up Milwaukee stations fairly well - something I've never been able to do before.

bakerlar
 

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Discussion Starter #5
FM/AM Signal booster -- anybody get one?

In case any of you are interested, another nice Pilot owner referred me to Crutchfield.com where they sell FM/AM signal boosters for about $15.00.

Have any of you gotten anything like this? Does it make a significant difference? As good as having an external antenna? I talked to the general manager at Honda and she said that she heard that those with interfere somehow with the other electronic systems in the Pilot, but she could not explain why. Does anyone know if this is the case? I'd like to improve my reception without having to pay monthly fees for XM radio.

Denise
 

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I have noticed that the radio sounds muffled also, I think that we have to accept this problem.. Or replace the whole darn thing.

I don't know if we can get a regular outside antenna installed and remove the original window antenna?

I wish Honda would do more research before they decide on there products that go into there vehicles.. Lots of problems could have been avoided if they took there time to decide what is better.
 

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I think for obvious reasons outside antennas are always better. However built in antennas are considers a "luxary thing" so automakers are putting them in...

Funny thing is the MDX does not have this but has the little antenna:eek:
 

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gopilot said:
...I don't know if we can get a regular outside antenna installed and remove the original window antenna?...
If you add an external antenna for better FM reception, you would not need to remove the window antenna - just disconnect the window antenna at the radio and hook in the new antenna.

I'd go with something with a sporty look like the roof mount antenna on the MDX.
 

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DeniseT said:

Aside from the poor reception, the sound still sounds "foggy" despite playing with the settings. This must be a speaker issue as well as the fact (as I've heard), that the vehicle is an SUV rather than a sedan. So, have any of you rectified this problem with new speakers or other equipment? If so, what is the most economical way to go and is there any specific equipment that is recommended to be used to improve the sound quality in the Pilot?

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Denise,

Look in the audio/sound forum and you'll find plenty of posts about people who have improved the audio in their Pilot. Personally, I have replaced the four door speakers and it helped trememendously with providing clearer sound and better control of booming bass. Take a look..
 

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FM reception problems and aftermarket tint

Has anyone with FM reception problems added aftermarket tint to the window with the in-glass antenna?

I've read that the metallized tint layer could cause reception problems. Just a thought.
 

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PaulV7 said:
I've noticed my radio stations crackle a good bit. But coming from my old truck the Pilot's radio is a huge step up. (87' GMC Jimmy with 2 dash speakers). I have wanted to look into an FM booster. Preferably one with an on/off button.

I can tell you that my Girlfriend's Civic picks up stations much better than the Pilot. She can get stations down in DC clear and I can't.
That's bizarre, PaulV7... I work where you live and I am able to get all of my D.C. radio stations without any problems (WHFS 99.1, DC-101, Mix 107.3, WMZQ 98.7) -- wonder if it's the specific radio lot/batch when it was manufactured in Malaysia or wherever....:confused:

Maybe you need one of these....???
 

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Discussion Starter #14
Followup re: poor stereo reception in the Pilot

Hi everyone,

Thanks for your responses regarding the poor stereo reception in the Pilot. I have been told by the service manager at my Honda dealer that they have received a lot of complaints about the poor stereo quality/reception in the Pilot. I have been dealing with the Customer Service Manager for Honda as well and she has had me try out a different Pilot to see if the problem is consistent with other Pilots or just a problem with mine. Sadly enough, I experienced the same problem when driving the other Pilot yesterday.

So, we'll see what she does about the problem from here. She said she would do whatever she could to correct the problem as she wanted me to be happy about my Honda purchase, but I don't know that she'd be willing to put in a new stereo system and an external antennae! A family friend who knows a bit about stereos said that it could be the tuner, in which case I'd need a new stereo (which I don't like 'cuz it wouldn't look like a factory system), or it could be the external antennae, but he said that it would be just trial and error.


Boy, I know you guys will hate me, but now I wish I had gone with a Lexus instead!!! I got the Pilot thinking I'd just add a sunroof and then I'd be happy, but now I'll have to add a sunroof, an antenna, new speakers....to be happy with it.

Anybody want to buy a one-week-old black Pilot with navi?

DeniseT
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kemosabe said:


That's bizarre, PaulV7... I work where you live and I am able to get all of my D.C. radio stations without any problems (WHFS 99.1, DC-101, Mix 107.3, WMZQ 98.7) -- wonder if it's the specific radio lot/batch when it was manufactured in Malaysia or wherever....:confused:

Maybe you need one of these....???
Maybe PaulV7 should go in with DeniseT and me to start a Group Buy on one of those things!!!! That should do the trick on pulling in the stations.

Out of the stations you mentioned, Kemosabe, I can only get Mix 107.3, and not at full strength. I also get a comparable signal from 94.7. In the evening, I can barely receive the local Frederick a.m. stations and sometimes a far-off signal from WCBS in New York, but not 1500, 1090, or any other local major station.

When I take the Pilot to Criswell for its first oil change, I will definitely ask them to check the antenna connection to the radio. But I'm pretty sure I'll end up in the same situation as DeniseT.
 

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Ziploc said:


Maybe PaulV7 should go in with DeniseT and me to start a Group Buy on one of those things!!!! That should do the trick on pulling in the stations.

Out of the stations you mentioned, Kemosabe, I can only get Mix 107.3, and not at full strength. I also get a comparable signal from 94.7. In the evening, I can barely receive the local Frederick a.m. stations and sometimes a far-off signal from WCBS in New York, but not 1500, 1090, or any other local major station.

When I take the Pilot to Criswell for its first oil change, I will definitely ask them to check the antenna connection to the radio. But I'm pretty sure I'll end up in the same situation as DeniseT.
Then it's got to be the individual radio or antenna or connection or what-have-you because I cruise Columbia and Fredneck every week and I seem to have no problems picking up any of the aforementioned stations... <img src="http://mywebpages.comcast.net/kemosabe/smilies/headscratch.gif">

WTOP comes in just fine (820am in Fredneck) when I'm in G-town. AND, I can pick up my Bal'more stations when I'm at home, too (101.9FM, 106.5FM).....<img src="http://mywebpages.comcast.net/kemosabe/smilies/square.gif">
 

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Hey Ziploc
Yea all of these stations come in ok (99.1, DC-101, Mix 107.3). I listen to 107.3 quite a bit. But 104.1 always has alittle static and in my g/f's civic it is fine. Well I think I figured out why a couple days ago.
I was heading from Jessup toward Glen Burnie (east) and started picking up a different station on 104.1. It didn't come in well enough to listen to. I bet the Pilot's reception is actually better than the civic and I'm picking up 2 stations which is what is creating the static. Maybe there is a Delaware 104.1 station.

A couple other stations do this I'm keeping an ear out to see if that is the same reason.
 

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Re: FM reception problems and aftermarket tint

tim.s said:
Has anyone with FM reception problems added aftermarket tint to the window with the in-glass antenna?

I've read that the metallized tint layer could cause reception problems. Just a thought.
Nope, no aftermarket tint here.
 

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PaulV7 said:
Hey Ziploc
Yea all of these stations come in ok (99.1, DC-101, Mix 107.3). I listen to 107.3 quite a bit. But 104.1 always has alittle static and in my g/f's civic it is fine. Well I think I figured out why a couple days ago.
I was heading from Jessup toward Glen Burnie (east) and started picking up a different station on 104.1. It didn't come in well enough to listen to. I bet the Pilot's reception is actually better than the civic and I'm picking up 2 stations which is what is creating the static. Maybe there is a Delaware 104.1 station.

A couple other stations do this I'm keeping an ear out to see if that is the same reason.
I can see your point that it's possible the Pilot's reception is actually better than the Civic's. But it could also be that the Civic is better at differentiating competing signals and pulling in the stronger of the two. I guess I just can't get over the fact that, when my Pilot and Civic sit in my driveway tuned to the same station, it's no contest....the Civic has stronger reception on a given station and pulls in other stations that the Pilot simply can't receive.:8:
 

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Your probably right. The civic can differentiate competing signals better than the pilot. I have not atually sat the 2 next to eachother and tried it. Just from riding in both around town have I come to this conculsion.
 
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