Well, out of nowhere at all, I'd say Custom Autosound products come to
mind. But don't take my word for it. Take the first ten hits for the
word "autosound" from the Stangnet.com's classic tech forum:
(1) 06-06-05 "whatever you do, don't buy a Custom Autosound head
(2) 05-11-05 "some of you guys like to pay too much. Just about all of
the 'specialized' soud deadener products have been on the market for
years, just used in different applications. The guys that own Dynamat
are laughing all the way to the bank. They probably are good friends
with the guys at Custom Autosound. They have shared tactics on how to
sell old technology at ripoff prices. Dynamat sells gutter liner for
$30 a square foot, and Cusotm Autosound sells AM/FM/cassette radios
(that don't work half the time) for $250. Sheesh, anyway, enough
(3) 04-30-05 "Custom Autosound Disaster!
"I just installed my Custom AutoCrap in my 1966. It's the USA 6 100
watt head unit. I have 120 watt pioneer kick panels and 6 x 9 in the
rear.... It sounds like crap!
Are Custom Autosound really this bad!
"Will MustangsUnlimited.com let me return it?
(3) 04-30-05 "Custom Autosound is crap and it's not just a lack of
power but a lack of sound quality."
(4) 05-02-05 "But for any person looking to keep the stock look
without damaging their dash, the units that Custom Autosound makes are
perfect. Yes they are little pricey and don't have all the features
(Tremble???), but they work good.
"PremiumPonyParts.com-Great Prices on Classic Mustang Parts"
[Hey, look at that, a favorable comment. The fact that the poster is a
CAS dealer ( http://www.premiumponyparts.com/Decks-c-49.html
(5) 11-19-04 "Custom Autosound, but I hear a lot of people on the
board have had bad experiences with them."
(6) 11-16-04 "Quote: Originally Posted by Brian68GT
"'I want to make a cable for the cd port on my USA-6 stereo so that it
becomes an aux input for my ipod.
"'Does anyone know what pins do what so i can have one made up?
"How does the USA-6 work? I read many threads about how these stereo's
"Oh yeah, I have a Custom Autosound (Kenwood) head unit that fit
perfectly into the dash whithout mods. And a 12 CD changer in the
[Look: a non-dealer comment that's not negative!!! Although it's
about a Kenwood conversion, not a CAS "Hidden Audio" or "USA-1" etc.
(8) 06-15-04 "Car audio- NOT CUSTOM AUTOSOUND
"65 coupe with no stereo in it, the dash has been cut and still has the
bezel from the radio the last person had, but i would like a modern cd
player with like a 4 speaker setup using the kickpanel and rear
quarters for speakers, and eventually considering a couple of subs and
an amp. Anbody have some pics of their setup that doesn't involve
(9) 06-16-04 "There is nothing wrong with racing stripes 302coupe, i
got nothing against those, but i don't know anything about racing
aprons, as far as i know those are for the restomod look. As for me, I
am going for the bad @$$ look, bigger tires in the back giving the car
it's aggressive look, and a great sounding exhaust is all i will need.
Not to mention some tunes, as long as it is not from custom autosound."
(10) 06-16-04 "Custom auto sound is overpriced and poor quality-thats
why people that actually listen to the stereo don't like them. Seems
like they're normally bought just to fill the factory hole in restored
Same deal, Vintage Mustang Forum:
(1) 09/25/05 "As I posted before my one year old Custom autosound radio
went kaput. I may not put any money into it as I consider it to be
junk. . . . I would like a radio and tape deck to last longer than this
one did. . . .
"Yes I hate to go it alone this time. At a couple of hundred a clip
this can get old. The money for the radio in it now I may as well of
thrown it down the toilet!"
(2) 09/23/05 "I have a Custom autosound unit... and although I have
heard many many horror stories, I have had this unit for a year and
used it almost everyday for a good 30+ minutes and so far nothing has
blown up The knobs are a little flimsy, and the sound quality isnt the
best, but it works OK for me. You can fix the sound quality issue with
an amp, and use your lucky wire strippers when you install it...."
[Can you say "damning with faint praise"?]
(3) 09/22/05 "Yes I know all the bad things about Custom autosound
radio. Unfortunately in my case they are true. My USA-1 radio was a
year old in May and completely stopped working today. Last week it was
the cassette part and now just a light when it is turned on. No radio!
"Does anybody know who repairs these things? I hate to throw away a
rather new radio. I was never too pleased with the radio but for part
time use it was sufficient.
"If one wants a fairly good radio I could not recommend this company. I
had trouble with it within 6 months of purchase, called the company and
they told me to call an 800 number. I called it several times and had
to leave messages. I never received a call back or email reply. Not
"Anyway I think I would like to get it repaired."
(4) 09/08/05 "I just installed a USA 1 radio from Custom autosound and
cannot get rid of ignition noise on AM/FM or cassette. (My previous
Ford AM/FM cassette radio had no noise.) I have installed an LC filter
in the hot lead to the radio with no change. I have an MSD
6AL/Duraspark igniton system, but again the old radio had none of this
noise. It is not the alternator as I disconnected it and the noise is
(5) 09/08/05 "Unfortunately I think buying a CAS system was your first
Mine works (USA 6) and doesn't produce engine noise, but sounds like
shat. Have you tried their tech line?"
(6) 09/09/05 "Yes. They tell me to remove the radio entirely and only
ground it via the black ground wire. Don't let the radio touch any
metal. Duh! How do I install it back in the car?
Not much help from them.
"Thanks for getting back to me. I'll keep diggin.'"
(7) 08/17/05 "Same boat as you. Using Custom autosound unit which is no
better than average, original style door speakers and grilles, and the
best two way speaker offered by NPD for the dash pad. . . . It really
does not provide much quality sound but it's something I can still hear
on the highway."
[ANOTHER poster who doesn't hate his Custom Autocrap -- or won't admit
(8) 08/18/05 "I think it's important to mention what almost no one
ever does. When working with audio, whether it's home or car, the
quality of the components make all the difference. . . . You aren't
going to get anything worthwile out of Custom autosound, no matter how
much you spend."
(9) 08/16/05 "Yeah the amplified side speakers will probably drown out
the dash speaker and those things werent ever good anyway. . . . Is the
custaom autosound the only thing you have. Those arent very good
(10) 07/31/05 ". . . [T]hat makes it sound as though Custom autosound's
stereos are good. I bought one of their stereos for the correct fit and
original look, but the audio output of it is just awful. Is there
anyone else out there producing stereos for classic cars that actually
So there it is, the first 20 posts to pop up from two web forums. Two
lukewarm non-criticisms, one recommendation from a dealer, and 17 dire
warnings and personal disasters. I'll wager that any other old car
forum -- Vettes, Camaros, Mopars, Tri-5's -- would give the same
Anyone still wondering how somebody could think the CAS a-holes are a
bunch of pirates who belong in jail, and likewise the people at Mustang
& Fords and Mustang Monthly who shill for them?