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Old 04-24-2009, 10:32 AM   #1
ILUVRVing's Avatar
Join Date: Apr 2009
Location: East Long Island, NY
Posts: 34
Conertone ZX690 / ZX700 ~ RV Entertainment system

I have the Concertone ZX500 - I'm on my forth unit now, and still have problems (and/or additional problems with each replacement unit) in my 2006 5th wheel Cherokee trailer, since we bought it. I've been dealing with the Forestriver and they can only offer me a ZX550 unit at a cost, now that I'm out of warranty to replace it. I'm worried and hesitant to get the ZX550 that it might just have the same (or others/more) issues and I'll just be wasting more time and money. I'd like to get the ZX690 they just released, only available at this website according to FR , but I'm also worried and hesitant to get the new ZX690 as well considering Concertones track record! But being that it seems to be the latest and greatest, I'm hoping that this unit has fixed all the reported problems so many people talk about on the on-line forums about all the past Concertone units. Looking at all the forums there are soooo many complaints, I would have to say out of 100 only 10 have no problems.
Do you know of anything else that will do the things the ZX550 / ZX690 can do? I've tried looking into other RV / Marine 12v systems but none have one or the other options, like the TV tuner or surround sound. If I piece together something else I have to get a separate radio head (that play's DVD's) a separate TV tuner/TV, a separate speaker selector, which will add up $$$. I don't mind paying $$$ for the Concertone ZX690 /ZX700 direct replacement, IF it will work ! The unit is a great idea for RV's and would like to stick with it, not to mention the 9.5" x 6.75" hole in my cabinet....
How are the ZX690 /also refered to as the ZX700 working out for those of you that have them?

The closest thing I found as a replacement to using the Concertone so far, that I've read other people have used, is the Jensen AWM750 or AWM950 . These seem to have close to everything the Concertone has, except it looks like I would loose the 5.1 surround (in the main living area/speaker "A" selection) and the TV tuner. As far as the TV, I guess I could always just replace the (now) LCD 20" monitor fed by a single video out and 12v supply from the Concertone unit, to a regular flat screen DTV tuner LCD with 12 volt power. Then I would have to change/add wiring, by feeding the audio out from the new TV back to the new Jensen unit, as well as adding antenna/catv feed (mounted on the other wall).
I'm just not sure how/ what to do with the 5.1 surround/sub woofer - speaker(s) wiring, and if I may need to add an amp to replace the built in 200 watt that the Concertone says it has..... Some where I read that Sony may have a unit that does surround, but I'm not sure if they would have all the other features, mainly the 3 speaker selection (built in) or what model it would be....

This is what one person has said on a discussion forum: FR = Forest River who is the manufacture of the RV's

Posted: 04/19/09 02:14pm

From a conversation I had with a guy from FR, the Concertone manufacturing facility in China has been restructured by FR. They have improved the production process and added more quality control inspections. He states their quality has greatly improved. I guess only time will tell.
I've been to their website, They have a new model that looks interesting. But, once again, time will tell.
I also found only a handful of people that have the ZX690 (also sometimes referred as the ZX700) that they either say the quality has greatly improved and so far have not had any problems...

I'm wondering if I should just chance it, and go with the NEW Concertone ZX690 / ZX700, less messing around with wiring and having to fab something to cover the big hole in the cabinet and probably less $$ after all is said and done. I still haven't heard back from Concertone after all my e-mails to them. I'm hoping they'll give a discount at least, considering all the trouble we all obviously know they have had on thier past units.....!

Or I should just spend $$ on something that I know will work?

What are your thoughts?

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Old 04-24-2009, 06:13 PM   #2
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Location: Louisville, KY
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Once the TV stations go digital this June, the TV tuner in all concertones will be useless.

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Old 04-24-2009, 09:27 PM   #3
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Join Date: Apr 2009
Location: East Long Island, NY
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Umm now that you mention that, I think your right - even the NEW ZX690 / ZX700 doesn't specifically say it has a digital TV tuner. What they do state, with a play on words is that it supports HD broadcast (which is only 720P) on their new LCD monitor, and they say that it will work with cable & sat boxes to receive over air HD digital broadcasts!

So in that case why should I keep trying to go for the New ZX690 / ZX700. I should just save my money and spend it on something that I know will ALWAYS work, like the Jensen radio and a New Jensen LCD DIGITAL 12 volt TV ...! Only draw back is that I'll loose the 5.1 surround sound. Unless there is any other solution(s)?
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