Big mistake with the Sony Xplod MP3 head unit. I did a little research on Mp3 head units and finally settled with JVC SH99 (which I have now on my fellow Toy, the Corolla). What's bad about the Sony is it doesn't read ID3 tags and I heard the load times are really slow. I'm very happy with my JVC. The sound quiality is great if you encode your MP3s around 192bps or higher. If you use 128 then you'll hear a little crackling sond. I highly recommend the JVC SH99 with a price tag of around $279.99 - $399.99.
Hey, thanks for the info on the MP3 player... I haven't had much of a chance to research them yet, but I know for sure my next head unit will be an MP3 player. All I knew about the Sony is that it's inexpensive... so I gues there's a reason it's cheap heheh
My current truck just has the factory CD player, which work great, by the way... but all my past vehicles have had Alpine head units. I just happen to think they're good because I haven't had any trouble with them at all.
For decks, I prefer the pioneer deh 5900, its got multiple eq options, plenty of pre amp outputs (for easy expansion), easy to use, disc titleing, plays burned cds with no problems. It doesn't do the MP3s but its still amazing. And its a breeze to install in tacomas, you dont even need a kit.
Just find a decent kenwood excelon head unit, and pair it with an autotek amp, great amps for the value, + their actually the ohm stable their rated at... none of this 2 ohm "Stereo" but not mono stuff. decent kenwood deck like 300, decent autotek amp like 304, you'd be set.