PROD­UCT SHOW­CASE

IN­SANE AU­DIO JK2001

4WDrive - - Contents - Words by Perry Mack

I al­ways felt hob­bled by the elec­tron­ics in my JK. The list of things it didn’t do well in­cluded a poor nav­i­ga­tion sys­tem that couldn’t be al­tered while driv­ing. I guess FCA didn’t think any­one would have a pas­sen­ger. There was also no easy way to con­nect a back-up cam­era, and no way to use the thou­sands of apps avail­able to our mo­bile de­vices, which en­hance our ev­ery­day lives.

I or­dered a JK2001 from In­sane Au­dio to bring the in­fo­tain­ment sys­tem of my 2015 JK into the 21st cen­tury. For you TJ or FJ Cruiser guys out there, In­sane Au­dio also makes per­fect fit prod­ucts for you too. In no par­tic­u­lar or­der, are my top eleven things that ‘turn my crank’.

• 11. Back-up cam­era and for­ward fac­ing front cam­era. With a cou­ple of op­tional cam­eras from In­sane Au­dio I now have a back-up cam and a front fac­ing rock cam.

• 10. Mas­sive stor­age op­tions. This head unit sup­ports up to 400 GB on a Mi­croSD card. You can store an en­tire movie col­lec­tion in high-def right on board and tens of thou­sands of songs all with no mov­ing parts and no skip­ping. You can even cus­tom­ize the on­board mu­sic player for some slick play­back op­tions. If you want more stor­age, it comes with a USB ca­ble de­signed to run to your glove box, where you can plug in a USB thumb drive or even a multi-ter­abyte ex­ter­nal hard drive. While the mu­sic por­tion of this is great for driv­ing, the video is great if you are over­land­ing and sleep­ing (or just wait­ing) in your Jeep.

• 9. Live en­gine data with the Torque App. You can view live en­gine data, cus­tom­ize gauge dis­plays, view or even clear en­gine codes all in the dash of your Jeep. It comes with an OBDII Blue­tooth don­gle that plugs into your OBDII port and con­nects to the app via Blue­tooth.

• 8. On­board satel­lite im­agery. Tired of look­ing at nav­i­ga­tion screens that don’t tell you what you need to know when you’re off-road? Get a birds eye view of the ter­rain.

• 7. Cus­tomiza­tion. One of the great fea­tures of a Wran­gler is the abil­ity to eas­ily make mod­i­fi­ca­tions for looks and/ or per­for­mance. Why should the elec­tron­ics be any dif­fer­ent? Al­most ev­ery­thing in this unit is cus­tom­iz­a­ble, from chang­ing the LED back­light­ing, to in­stalling live wall­pa­pers.

• 6. Sound. The com­pany is called In­sane Au­dio for a rea­son and the sound qual­ity is ter­rific. In­sane Au­dio’s JK2001 comes with a built-in amp that will power all OEM sound sys­tems (in­clud­ing Alpine and In­fin­ity OEM up­grades) but also con­tains preamp out­puts and a ded­i­cated sub out with sep­a­rate

sub vol­ume con­trol for your cus­tom af­ter­mar­ket sys­tem. Swipe down from the top of the screen and ac­cess In­saneEQ with a nine-band graphic equal­izer to dial in your favourite tunes.

• 5. Built tough. It’s en­tirely solid-state tech­nol­ogy with no mov­ing parts and is rated IP66 wa­ter­proof and dust­proof. It also has strong elec­tronic shock pro­tec­tion so it is de­signed to take a beat­ing on the trail - af­ter all it is de­signed to go in a Wran­gler.

• 4. Per­fect fit. This is not a uni­ver­sal prod­uct. It’s built from an OEM mold and de­signed to fit per­fectly in the JK. No dash kits, trim kits or wiring har­nesses needed. No need to cut up your dash. It works with steer­ing wheel con­trols right out of the box, and even their backup and front fac­ing rock cam­eras look OEM when in­stalled.

• 3. In­tel­li­gent Blue­tooth. This unit can do all the things one would ex­pect like stream mu­sic from your phone or make hands-free calls. It can also do a lot more like wire­lessly con­trol all your ac­ces­sories by con­nect­ing to Switch-Pros SP9100 ($780 http://amzn.to/2FFgt77). You can even wire­lessly view and con­trol your GoPro. You can con­trol mul­ti­ple Blue­tooth ac­ces­sories sim­ply by down­load­ing the ap­pro­pri­ate app.

• 2. In­sane NavEngine is In­sane Au­dio’s nav­i­ga­tion soft­ware and it is de­signed to work en­tirely off­line and well out of cell range. It comes pre­loaded with street maps for the US and Canada, trail maps and full 3D to­pog­ra­phy.

• 1. Apps, apps and more apps. With built-in WiFi and the Google Play store pre­in­stalled you can down­load any of the 3.5 mil­lion apps avail­able. This isn’t just Ap­ple CarPlay or An­droid Auto where you are ba­si­cally mir­ror­ing a small sub­set of ap­proved apps run­ning on your phone through a phys­i­cal ca­ble.

It isn’t a com­plete love af­fair though. Two things I would change are the high gloss screen front. There are days where the highly re­flec­tive screen makes it chal­leng­ing to see. So I will in­stall an anti-glare screen pro­tec­tor that will cor­rect this some­thing like the Tech Ar­mor for iPad mini ($9 for three - http://amzn.to/2FFLXtO).

And I wish it were plug and play with my Sir­ius XM from the fac­tory. There are work arounds - I can down­load the app and then tether my phone, or I can buy an ex­ter­nal re­ceiver, con­nect it to the aux-in, and mount it or drop it in the glove box - some­thing like the Onyx EZ (around $70 on ama­zon - http://amzn.to/2FIwIjR).

In­stall time was about three hours (not in­clud­ing cam­eras). The in­struc­tions were pretty solid us­ing pho­to­graphs to de­tail the steps. As with most un­der dash work, large hands hin­der your in­stall time, so there’s no point in try­ing to set a speed record. Set aside an af­ter­noon and take your time.

As spring turns to sum­mer, I’ll have more time to ex­per­i­ment with the JK2001 on the trails and keep you up­dated as it fails, lives up to, or ex­ceeds ex­pec­ta­tions. We have smart­phones. For many of the same rea­sons, we should also have a smart 4x4.

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