Pin It

Accessorize Your Ride 

by Clint Burgess

There may be more boom for your buck in a stock stereo system these days, and new vehicles are getting a bit more generous with accessories like alloy wheels and the ever-popular spoiler. But nothing can compare to the hallowed walls of a car audio specialty shop that has more to offer than just big woofers. As the possibilities for more outrageous additions to vehicles become a reality, it's necessary to see what's out there, and whether it will make your friends say, "Wow."

The car audio market is a veritable labyrinth of gadgets and doodads that requires some careful navigating. With some assistance from Jay Falcone, manager of locally owned Aspen Sound in the Spokane Valley, here are a few of the goodies.

It's a fact that the favorite pastime of Americans is watching TV, and it was only a matter of time until we could watch it in our cars. "People are becoming more familiar with the fact that they have the option to put a DVD system in their car," says Falcone. These systems have really gained popularity and are becoming more competitively priced. Falcone says in the next five years, LCD screens will become standard options on most vehicles regardless of whether consumers are watching TV or movies on them. The auto industry is making a push toward the inclusion of DVD systems in certain makes and models as a result of consumer demand. The advantage is this makes the systems more accessible, the costs are more affordable and you get to watch movies in your car. Prices for these flip- screens of fun run between $1,000 and $5,000, but you can get a nice package for around $1,200 installed - a small price to pay for improving those monotonous road trips with road-weary back-seat passengers.

Another popular item on the radar is satellite radio.. You buy your hardware (the two big sellers right now are XM Radio and Sirius Satellite Radio), pay a nominal monthly access fee and -- bam! -- you're cruising with 100 digital, commercial-free stations. In an age of repetitive playlists on free radio and even more repetitive commercials, satellite radio offers tailor-made stations in all genres.

"Variety is what people are getting here," says Falcone. If your car isn't equipped with a satellite radio receiver, it can easily be fitted with one. And it's a decent bargain. A one-month Sirius subscription weighs in at $13, while XM Radio comes in at $10 per month.

In the same vein as the satellite radio decks are the MP3-ready systems. These stereos allow users to connect their favorite MP3 player to the decks and play all the music stored on the device. All of Aspen Sound's major brands, including Alpine, Kenwood and Eclipse, have auxiliary inputs outfitted on mid- to upper-level stereo decks. Aspen also builds custom dash pieces to accommodate some wicked configurations of stereo equipment as well as construction of custom speaker boxes that enhance sound while maximizing space.

Now that your ride is fully loaded, you'll need something to protect it all. "Viper Security Systems are the most popular system we offer," says Falcone. "They are well-known in the industry for their product, and people trust their name."

I can hear the faux police sirens now.

Publication date: 08/26/04

  • Pin It

Latest in News

  • Skunked
  • Skunked

    Why Spokane County Commissioners passed a temporary ban on new outdoor pot farms without telling anyone
    • Dec 8, 2016
  • Prisoner Problems
  • Prisoner Problems

    Computer errors continue to plague state Department of Corrections; plus, Washington ranked first in pro-charter-school policies
    • Dec 8, 2016
  • In Defense of Refugees
  • In Defense of Refugees

    In the aftermath of the presidential election, local residents seek ways to love and support their refugee friends
    • Dec 1, 2016
  • More »


Subscribe to this thread:

Add a comment

Today | Sat | Sun | Mon | Tue | Wed | Thu
Gingerbread Build-Off

Gingerbread Build-Off @ Davenport Grand Hotel

Sun., Dec. 11, 10 a.m.-4 p.m.

All of today's events | Staff Picks

More by Clint Burgess

  • The Word Made Fresh

    & & by Luke Baumgarten and Clint Burgess & & & r & It's gotta be tough to do publicity for Christian rock. The evangelical idea that the secular world is the devil's domain - that it's the fiery gauntlet you have to navigate to get your eternal reward - turns
    • Sep 21, 2005
  • Summer Adventure - NW Fishing

    Fishing is a way to absorb the natural surroundings of the region we call home, to commune with the spirits of generations gone before who dropped their lines the same way we do today. Besides, it's
    • Jul 13, 2005
  • Honda Gets Tough

    As a rule, certain car companies are known for specific models and typically excel at what they do within a specific type of vehicle. For example, Dodge is known for its trucks, Toyota for its sedans, Mazda for its sports cars and so fort
    • Jul 6, 2005
  • More »

Most Commented On

  • Unfinished Business

    Isaiah Wall wants to get his life on track. But first, he's gotta buy drugs for the police
    • Nov 17, 2016
  • Fake-News Nightmare

    The social media dream of the 2000s is fading, but we can reset the system by sticking up for the truth
    • Dec 1, 2016
  • More »

Top Tags in
News & Comment


green zone


trail mix


Readers also liked…

  • Pushing Prevention
  • Pushing Prevention

    Talking about suicide is key after a string of deaths at local high schools
    • May 13, 2015
  • The <i>Real</i> Rachel Dolezal
  • The Real Rachel Dolezal

    The story goes far beyond just a white woman portraying herself as black
    • Jun 17, 2015

© 2016 Inlander
Website powered by Foundation