89 5th ave/M body radio replacements

Interior and Electrical

  1. Camtron

    Camtron Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    53
    Likes Received:
    11
    Joined:
    Apr 25, 2019
    Location:
    Chicago
    hello,
    Has anyone found a decent aftermarket radio replacement? Modern 1.5din radios are pretty limited and the one I keep coming across is about $400
    https://www.amazon.com/gp/aw/d/B00TE3ZXUQ/ref=cm_cr_arp_mb_bdcrb_top?ie=UTF8

    Has anyone found a decent replacement or way of installing a 1-2din radio that doesn’t just look goofy in the dash or have experience with these Retro sound Newport radios? My radio just stopped working today. Still has power and everything just not sending any sound from the radio or tape deck, get audible tone when I raise volume/bass/treble all the way up, just no tunes.
    Thanks for any info.
     
  2. Aspen500

    Aspen500 Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    4,105
    Likes Received:
    1165
    Joined:
    Feb 14, 2015
    Location:
    Rib Mountain (Wausau) WI
    I've never seen a single DIN in a 1.5 space that didn't look, well,,,,,,,,,,,,stupid. The styles of the radios leave a lot to be desired also. Personally, my only choice would be the Newport. Price is what keeps me from doing it so far.
     
    Camtron and Ele115 like this.
  3. volare 77

    volare 77 Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    1,085
    Likes Received:
    128
    Joined:
    Jun 12, 2014
    Location:
    maryland
    I agree. I really don`t like the look of a small radio in a large opening. I always liked the factory look but the Newport radio price is kinda steep IMO.
     
    Camtron likes this.
  4. Ele115

    Ele115 Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    136
    Likes Received:
    41
    Joined:
    Apr 24, 2019
    Location:
    Tampa FL
    If you have the original radio it can be restored. I had an AM/FM for a vintage Cadillac done for about $140 and it came out very well. I'm probably going to get the one for my 77 Fury restored now that I drive it regularly, I think the price is going to be reasonable considering what anything new would cost and keeping it original being a plus to me.
     
    Camtron likes this.
  5. Aspen500

    Aspen500 Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    4,105
    Likes Received:
    1165
    Joined:
    Feb 14, 2015
    Location:
    Rib Mountain (Wausau) WI
    It isn't necessarily the radio itself working or not. I've got the original AM/FM Stereo in my Aspen and it works fine, it just sounds like,,,,,,,,,,well,,,,,,,,,a stock '79 radio. Better speakers helped a lot but how good can a 4 watt per channel radio sound? :eek:

    I keep eyeing up the Newport, which is the only one I'd replace the stock one with because it's a 1.5 DIN and it wouldn't look out of place with it's face design. If only they had a chrome knob option. Couple downsides I see, per the reviews, is the mounting brackets are flimsy crap and there's no provision for dimming when the headlights are turned on. Can always fab up better mounting brackets but it's be nice to have the display dim down for night driving. Oh well, can't have everything, yes?
     
    Last edited: May 31, 2019
    Camtron and Ele115 like this.
  6. Camtron

    Camtron Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    53
    Likes Received:
    11
    Joined:
    Apr 25, 2019
    Location:
    Chicago
    I wish that was the case for me. The speakers were tolerable enough but, radio and tape deck just aren’t sending anything out of the speakers now; can’t even get it to switch over to AM/FM as of my drive home from work. Now it’s stuck on the tape deck and still not sending sound; but if I raise volume/treble/bass all the way up, I still get the audible beep that they’re at their limit so speakers are for sure working. Oh well. I guess I get to choose between keeping it original and trying to find a place to repair the factory radio or blowing $400 on the Newport radio.
     
  7. Duke5A

    Duke5A Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    474
    Likes Received:
    143
    Joined:
    Apr 6, 2018
    Location:
    Michigan
    Jonnyuma and Camtron like this.
  8. Camtron

    Camtron Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    53
    Likes Received:
    11
    Joined:
    Apr 25, 2019
    Location:
    Chicago
    You just blew my mind. I should have googled a little harder.
     
  9. Oldiron440

    Oldiron440 Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    2,134
    Likes Received:
    392
    Joined:
    Apr 25, 2017
    Location:
    Iowa
    I remember them as being ok but nothing like what the OEM offers now.
     
  10. Darth-Car

    Darth-Car Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    818
    Likes Received:
    287
    Joined:
    Aug 9, 2015
    Location:
    Ohio
    Grab a unit from a late 90's junked Durango. You get AM/FM/CD/Cassette plus a three band graphic EQ. Heck there is a company on the E coast that is an auto radio repair center, and they get these Durango radios all the time, and they add a nice 1/8'' headphone connector right on the side of the speaker joystick control so you can plug in your MP3 player. So you can get a totally refurbished unit with a modern connector upgrade at a price far less than the Newport, and it really gives you a true MOPAR Factory look.

    Chrysler Jeep Dodge Car Truck Radio 84-02 CD CS Aux Input in Face RAZ No SW Ctrl
     
    Opticon77 and Camtron like this.
  11. BudW

    BudW Moderator Staff Member

    Messages:
    3,654
    Likes Received:
    977
    Joined:
    Mar 4, 2012
    Location:
    Oklahoma City
    Chrysler radios from early ‘70’s to 2000’ish are mostly the same as far as fitting into the hole and plugging in – which a few exceptions.

    The big item is how the radio bolts into the dash. This style is how most of the radios look:
    eBay radio.jpg
    If the white arrows are in this location, then the radio will bolt into the dash without any modifications.

    A few Chryslers have this bolt pattern (yellow arrows):
    eBay radio 4.jpg
    This will work if you cut one leg off, but the radio will be a bit loose in the dash. That doesn’t bother me in one car, but the other car – where people might ride in the car (up front) – it might ask questions.

    This is the newer style (but without Navigation). I don’t think it will fit at all, without a lot of modifications:
    eBay radio 2.jpg
    This design was meant to have a rounded bezel that goes around it (and not the squared off ones that we use).

    I would really like to get this radio in my cars – like the one in my wife’s 2010 Town and Country, but I just don’t see it happening, for me:
    eBay radio 5.jpg


    I don’t know when Chrysler changed the wiring plug-ins, but I think it was about ’79 or so (except for low end cars) to this design (black and gray flat plug). This design lasted well into 2000’s. If you find any working Chrysler radio with the bolt pattern in first picture (above) and uses the gray/black plug-ins (below), then it will fit and work.
    eBay radio 3.jpg

    The low-end cars (like my ’77 Volare wagon) and other Chryslers before the gray/black plug-ins were in use, were a bit sporadic as to what fit what, electrically wise. The AM/FM radio in my wagon has 3 plug-ins and 4 wires total. A pair of wires going to the single dash speaker, and two single wires going to ignition switch and to dash lights.

    You can get aftermarket plug-in kit to adapt any of our FMJ vehicles to the gray/black style, if you wanted to.

    Some radio versions have a third connector, like the blue arrow. Generally, that is not needed for our cars to work – but with that said, some of our cars need to be taped into a possible missing wire (black connector) to get the power antenna to operate (if equipped).
    BudW
     
    Camtron likes this.
  12. Camtron

    Camtron Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    53
    Likes Received:
    11
    Joined:
    Apr 25, 2019
    Location:
    Chicago
    Thank you so much Bud. You just filled me in on the information I was missing. You’re an amazing resource and I appreciate your input
     
    7T8 Custom likes this.
  13. Darth-Car

    Darth-Car Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    818
    Likes Received:
    287
    Joined:
    Aug 9, 2015
    Location:
    Ohio
    Remember this about the older radios before 83, and 84, they do not have enough wires in the car to accommodate a direct plug in of the newer radios with the black, and gray wire harnesses. The older cars had simple wiring because the speakers were negative grounded, and received their ground through the frame. The new radios with the black, and gray connectors provide a positive, and a negative wire for each speaker. Do not try to bundle all of those negative wires together and ground them to the frame. This will cause your new radio to release all of its factory installed magic smoke, and then it will not work anymore. :(
     
  14. Duke5A

    Duke5A Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    474
    Likes Received:
    143
    Joined:
    Apr 6, 2018
    Location:
    Michigan
    Sounds like the voice of experience Darth. :eek:
     
  15. Darth-Car

    Darth-Car Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    818
    Likes Received:
    287
    Joined:
    Aug 9, 2015
    Location:
    Ohio
    Been there, done one to many radio installs, and upgrades to the MOPARS, and furds of the world. With youth came inexperience, and the belief I could do anything. After all it looked like it should work. :) POOF and so the magic smoke would get released. :)

    All good times. Glad I had the chance to do it, and drive these fine cars when they were new.
     
  16. BudW

    BudW Moderator Staff Member

    Messages:
    3,654
    Likes Received:
    977
    Joined:
    Mar 4, 2012
    Location:
    Oklahoma City
    Valid point.
    The ‘70’s radios (I use ‘70’s generically, for this also applies to ‘60’s and early ‘80’s) uses the speaker return wire (-) via the car chassis. It is cheaper that way (less copper wiring), but newer (ie: better) radios do not like it (as you found out), as well as computer systems don’t like the additional “electrical noise”.

    In the early ‘80’s (’84, maybe?), Chrysler added the speaker return wire into the wiring harnesses. I suspect Chrysler intended it that way for the early years that use the black/gray flat connectors, for they have more than enough empty slots for the return wires – but they didn’t use it (which makes no sense to me). The good news is not many of Chryslers that use the black/gray flat connectors don’t have speaker returns that it is something I forget about – so good catch and I didn’t mean to cause anyone any problems.

    The radio connector contains 7 wire slots (each). If you have one of the early ones which there is only 7 wires used (total), or less, and planning on using a newer radio, you might want to at least get an aftermarket wiring pigtail set and transfer some of the additional wires to existing connectors, to use as speaker ground wires (as well as lay some additional wiring).
    Radio wiring pigtails.png

    This is the basic radio system from my ’86 FSM (Factory Service Manual) to show the wiring layout (note: colors vary year to year):
    86 FSM pg 8-224.JPG

    86 FSM pg 8-225.JPG

    Gray connector
    1 always on (radio memory) - Red
    2 power wire (ignition or accessory feed) – Red/Dark Blue tracer
    3 dash lights “on” feed – Black/Yellow tracer
    4 dash light “intensity” feed – Orange
    5 R/F speaker (-) - Dark Green
    6 L/F speaker (-) - Black
    7 Blank

    Black Connector
    1 R/R speaker (-) - Dark Blue/Orange tracer
    2 L/R speaker (-) - Brown/Light Blue tracer
    3 R/F speaker (+) - Violet
    4 L/F speaker (+) - Dark Green
    5 R/R speaker (+) - Dark Blue
    6 L/R speaker (+) - Brown/Yellow tracer
    7 Power Antenna feed - Dark Green/Red tracer

    And don’t forget, everything grounds through the ground strap – so if it is missing or not attached - nothing will work.
    BudW
     
  17. Aspen500

    Aspen500 Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    4,105
    Likes Received:
    1165
    Joined:
    Feb 14, 2015
    Location:
    Rib Mountain (Wausau) WI
    The 2nd radio pic is exactly like the one in my '96 Dakota. They sound OK but aren't what you'd call a top of the line sounding sound system. :eek:

    Most, if not all, newer radios, such as the 2010 Town and Country would be about impossible to retrofit. You may not be able to even get it to work since they usually are programmed to the vehicles VIN (for theft protection) and without the rest of the computer network such as the PCM or BCM, it'd be nothing but a blank screen with no sound because it would have "nobody to talk to about things", even if the harness was adapted to the older car. It's bad enough what you have to go through when replacing the radio in a newer car to get it to work. Programming to the vehicle with a scanner and pass-thru device hooked to the manufacturers tech site, which requires a 2 or 3 day subscription at $35 to $60 for access, etc................Ain't new vehicles just grand?:confused:
     
    Last edited: Jun 11, 2019
  18. Camtron

    Camtron Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    53
    Likes Received:
    11
    Joined:
    Apr 25, 2019
    Location:
    Chicago
    Good day. Body shop found a replacement rear bumper for my car, and I found a replacement radio for $20

    image.jpg

    image.jpg
     
    BudW likes this.
  19. BudW

    BudW Moderator Staff Member

    Messages:
    3,654
    Likes Received:
    977
    Joined:
    Mar 4, 2012
    Location:
    Oklahoma City
    Um, yea.

    I was having a chat with a work mate a while back. Our cars are simple compared to todays cars. Most people can do most repairs (if they wanted to). Also, easy to modify and/or customize. If a person was to change intakes, camshaft, carb and exhaust, you generally got a fun driving car.

    IF you take todays Hemi (for example), you can’t make those (simple) modifications and expect any results. You can install a huge grind camshaft – which takes roughly 14 flat rate hours, and net maybe 2 or 3 HP. Todays cars (well … any car) must work as a package and the computer does a decent job of keeping things in-line. The shop who did our dyno tests, said they do a lot of work for the “Street Outlaws (OKC)” cars. A club member with a 6.4L Hemi was asking about upgrading his car, and they shot back an estimate for him of 12.5k (US dollars) without performing any internal engine work (just for a Pro-Charger, fuel system and programming modifications)! Internal engine work will bump that figure a lot higher.

    Today’s cars, all the computers talk to each other and if one has a VIN difference, all computers stop working. If makes testing with a “known good part” pretty much impossible to do now days. I can understand having the VIN burned into the radio for anti-theft purposes, but it sure makes diagnosing cars a lot more difficult. I understand computers do allow more things to be managed but just how many computers does a car need? I saw a new computer (today), the Active Noise Cancelation (good grief). It is also hard to keep up with the abbreviations used today as well: TIPM, PDC, FICM, FCIM, TPMS, APIM and so forth. Then the abbreviations used by Chrysler is not the same used by Ford, and so forth.

    In thirty years, I just don’t see people restoring the cars made today, like we do today.

    Someone pointed out to me yesterday, a steering column for a 2012 Fiat 500 costs over $1,800 (US) (Fiat part number is 5xq09jw4ad). Yes, it does have electric steering. The dealership also wanted 6 hours to replace it (at $175.00 per hour), for another grand. By the time you include sales taxes, that is almost $3,000 for a hard-steering concern – which might be going (used) price for one of these cars (… maybe, I don’t pay much attention to Fiats).
    BudW
     
  20. Camtron

    Camtron Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    53
    Likes Received:
    11
    Joined:
    Apr 25, 2019
    Location:
    Chicago
    Picked up my car from the body shop today (rear bumper looks great) and went straight home and installed my new radio. Thanks again to everyone, I’d still be looking at a $400 replacement without you all helping.

    image.jpg