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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Imagine having a factory radio that cannot be replaced with anything else. That's the situation with a 2002 Buick LeSabre we bought from a friend a few years ago. The factory radio is wired so deeply into the electronics of the car, that it must not be removed. I've checked with local radio guys and Crutchfield, and there is no replacement radio available. I bet a clever guy could relocate the radio and leave it wired into the car and install another in its place, but I'm not about to get into that. What were they thinking?
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Thanks. Very interesting. I went to two (at least) local, independent audio installers and asked about putting a different radio into the Buick. They both looked it up and told me it was not possible - that the original radio had to remain wired-in for the car's electronics to work. Then I went to Crutchfield, and they do not have any radios that will fit, although I did not talk to anyone there about it.

I can live with the old cassette radio, but I just thought it was a strange situation. The current radio is doubl-DIN size, so something else should fit.

Since this isn't a Buick site, I don't want to use up any more Cube time.

Jerry
 

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GM's use 1.5 DIN sized radios. Not as easy to find (unless you go single DIN with the cubby hole below).

Some GM's use the stereo system for chimes & buzzers, which is the only instance I can think of why the installers would deny you (too many customers upset that their audible warnings disappeared after changing the radio out).
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
I just got off the phone with Crutchfield. This car uses a totally different mounting/wiring arrangement. The radio is mounted inside a plastic box that is riveted to the dash. There is a ribbon cable running through that box, and the radio plugs into that. So, if you want to put in a new radio, you have to start from scratch with the wiring. It's possible, but is it worth it?
 

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This is all so strange to me! Never heard of such a thing. I even found this: http://townhall-talk.edmunds.com/direct/view/.f0f9dd6 They talk about Best Buy doing the radio for them. I'm not trying to start an argument here - just trying to get to the bottom of something that challenges my knowledge!

jerryc41 said:
start from scratch with the wiring. It's possible, but is it worth it?
This is how I started out with cars, actually. I guess it's so common to buy an adapter that people don't do this any more. I am becoming obsolete!
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Maybe the replacement CD radio was a factory Buick unit.
 

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Anyone ever look at replacing a radio in a Nissan Titan? I don't think it can be easily done as the radio is integrated into the facia. I thought that was a cheesy move, I bought the truck anyway.
 

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The worst offender (even though I LOVED this car): Infiniti M series

The radio is one component, molded into the center console, the disc changer molded in below it, partially controlled by buttons near the LCD screen, DVD drive is in the center console, and GPS drive in the glove box... all linked to the LCD screen molded into the dash.

Want to upgrade the GPS system? HD radio? You have to buy a new car!!!
 

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none said:
jerryc41 said:
start from scratch with the wiring. It's possible, but is it worth it?
This is how I started out with cars, actually. I guess it's so common to buy an adapter that people don't do this any more. I am becoming obsolete!
My previous radio change was all wire-to-wire, and that's what I'm used to. However, my last change just used a harness adapter from Crutchfield -- I felt totally spoiled :)!

none said:
The worst offender (even though I LOVED this car): Infiniti M series
Wow -- lovely :p!
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
TrevorS said:
none said:
jerryc41 said:
start from scratch with the wiring. It's possible, but is it worth it?
This is how I started out with cars, actually. I guess it's so common to buy an adapter that people don't do this any more. I am becoming obsolete!
My previous radio change was all wire-to-wire, and that's what I'm used to. However, my last change just used a harness adapter from Crutchfield -- I felt totally spoiled :)!

none said:
The worst offender (even though I LOVED this car): Infiniti M series
Wow -- lovely :p!
I used to do wire-to-wire before I found out about adaptors, but that wouldn't be the worst part. I'd have to fabricate some sort of mounting system for the new radio, since GM uses a fixed box to hold the radio in place. I think I'll get a used GM CD/cassette player - $30-$50 - and put that in.

The picture shows the radio removed, with the plug at the rear of the box.
Jerry
 

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