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on April 24, 2013
Unfortunately, the amazon product page for this product will not tell you what *model* of double din this kenwood stereo is; Kenwood DPX300U. The price for this stereo was 134 when I purchased it (April '13) and I've seen it sold elsewhere for a min of 150. If you know what you are getting and are looking at this model, then you won't be disappointed. If you are looking at this because it's a cheap double din and looks good, read the specs on the kenwood page! This is an excellent midway double din stereo! I got mine professionally installed so I could just "go" and not worry about breaking something. It comes with a wiring harness, a toyota-specific frame plate, a 'japanese/GMC' plate and a third generic plate. I have a '05 Mustang and this stereo looks very tasteful and natural in my car. I seriously considered an excelon series single din kenwood stereo but just couldn't get over the flashy youth/ricer look of the single dins. Here's what made me choose this stereo: I wanted iPod capability (usb for best quality/auxiliary at the least), a large enough screen so I wouldn't squint while driving, and definitely a sleek/understated look.

Here are some general features of this stereo:

* USB Connectivity for iPhone, iPod and compatible USB mass storage devices
* Pandora Connectivity, Sirius XM ready
* Kenwood Music Control for Android Smartphones
* Front USB and AUX Input
* 3x 2.5 pre-amp volts
* 1.5" display (with 24 color choices for button backlight & display led)
* Dimmer control (great for night driving)
* Steering Wheel Remote Input

Interesting Specs:

* Supported File Formats WMA / MP3 / AAC
* 24-Bit Digital-Analog Converter (usb port)
* Front AUX Input
* USB 1.1 & 2.0 Full Speed
* File System FAT16/32
* Preout Impedance(Ω) Under 600Ω
* Speaker Impedance(Ω) 4-8Ω

There are several things I really love about this particular stereo:

Aside from it adding to the appearance of the inside of my mustang (in a classy/slick kind of way), there are a lot of customization options for audio quality. Don't like messing with treble/bass/mids/fader/balance? There are presets on the stereo for different types of music. Hear a fav dubstep/rap song? instead of changing your custom audio settings, go to the loudness & Bass Booster options and crank it up from nothing to lvl 2 or 3! There are further advanced controls which are beyond me, but I know at the very least you will need a dedicated amp and good set of speakers to fully appreciate all the advanced settings you can tweak on your head unit. If you just bought this head unit as a first step like I did, fool around with the presets, your bass/treble/mids and don't worry about touching the advanced stuff yet. I also like that the DAC (digital-analogue converter) is 24bit. They knock your socks off compared with using an iPod with an auxiliary cable (sound quality wise). It also a built in mosfett 4-channel amplifier which provides at least a 4x improvement over your car's stock setup! The buttons on this device are SOLID and not crappy or cheap looking. They have a satisfying click sound and feel when depressed or tapped. The control knob is tickered; every 10 degrees or so that you rotate, you hear/feel a tick sound. Very reassuring and allows for precise volume adjustment. Volume max is at 35. I actually like my music loud, but I cannot stand it much at 20. In fact, I feel that 15 is pretty loud. That leaves 20 more values to go! So there is a lot of potential for this speaker if you like deafening music volume. The Bass options are very cool too. I didn't know my stock speakers were capable of such seat-shaking soundwaves. lol.

There are things I do not particularly like with this stereo:

There is no HD Radio built in. Not a big deal, but I do love radio stations on long rides and having CD-quality music from stations sounds great. But it does not come with this and the upper end models. I also do not like that the pre amp voltage is only 2.5. The excelon series kenwood stereos have 4 volt pre amps. The difference is a cleaner sound with less distortion (when connected to an amp) at higher volumes. Though this difference I have been told is negligible. Only an extremely extreme audiophile can tell this minute difference. Many on popular auto/audio forums claim they can rarely tell the difference between 2.5 vs 4. Though your amp will provide an extremely important purchase later down the road. Lastly I did not like it when plugging in an iPod/iPhone- it immediately turns your stereo as the controller. I personally like changing my music on my iPod/iPhone- not on the stereo itself. Not to mention its easier for passengers to handle an iPod than some foreign stereo device they've never used before. Luckily, there is an option to put the device in/out of "App Mode" which lets you regain control of the handheld device. That's pretty much it with the cons. They are minor and hardly worth mentioning.

Please ask if any questions!

*update* 4/25/13
I found out how to change the color of the buttons/display lights! You need to turn on the car fully, turn on the stereo, and in small silver print on the stereo plastic is says "FCN". Press and hold that button for a couple seconds until you reach a Function Control menu. Turn the dial until you find the setting for color and select by pressing the knob. THen adjust to your hearts content. 24 choices.
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on July 29, 2013
IMPORTANT NOTE - if you buy this make sure you have the latest firmware, 3.06 at the time of this writing. Older firmware will cause the radio to randomly not power up after you turn the car off and on. Professional installers will NOT automatically do this!

I needed a simple replacement for the radio in my 2004 Toyota Camry (non-JBL) as the CD and tape player both died. The price was good at $125 and prime shipping made it even better. This review covers the radio as well as some do-it-yourself installation issues.

What I liked:
-Large display with decent sized buttons
-USB memory stick port.
-CD player with support for common CD music formats
-Ability to customize the lighting color to match the Toyota dash display.
- There are other options which I didn't care about - it seems now to support Pandora (there was a manual sticker on the faceplate) but it is not clear how. I am not a bit fan of Pandora so I didn't pursue it.

What I didn't like:
-Lack of decent documentation. The manual it came with has almost no useful information.
-The main manual is only online in HTML format, so you can't easily print it out to refer to it. It is not quite up to date either.
-If you let the display colors cycle through (as is the default) they will be at times unreadable, especially during the day, due to certain colors in the cycle being too dark to read.
-This unit is advertised as coming with a Toyota mounting kit and faceplate, but Kenwood email Support could not tell what year car(s)it would work with. The sent a canned letter that told me the installer would know and offered a list of local installers. Of the installers listed one was a Best Buy closed for two years, another a West Marine that had no clue what I was talking about, and the other two were too far away to even bother. When I tried another email there was no reply. I found out after purchase it was NOT a 2004 Camry, so I had to order a mounting kit from a separate source. This should have been in the documentation.
-The radio sensitivity is not quite as good as the OEM radio. Close, but I couldn't pickup some stations that I normally listen to.
-There doesn't appear to be a manual tuning option that I could find, so I couldn't set the buttons for the stations I wanted but the auto scan skipped.
-When I first got the radio up and running it would frequently stop working, requiring a push of the reset button on the front panel. Come to find out I had version 3.03 of the firmware, with the latest being 3.06. An upgrade fixed the problem. The upgrade was remarkably easy after finally navigating to the proper page on the Kenwood website in spite of some broken links. This is likely what reviewer Maurice Delgado experienced, as his unplugging and plugging in is the same as pressing the reset. The upgrade would have probably fixed his radio, but it is not advertised.
-There is a cool function that syncs the clock to the radio signal, but it is an hour off. I don't know if this is a DST problem but there is no way I can see to adjust it.
If you do the install yourself you will need a mounting kit and (not necessary but highly recommended)an intermediate wiring harness. Trying to find a decent schematic of the Toyota wiring harness online was fruitless, and I didn't want to buy the whole repair manual just to get it. Buying the aftermarket harness does make it easy - you will need some way to join the wires between the new radio's harness and the aftermarket harness - I used "quick splice" wire joiners, but solder and heat shrink or inline connectors and crimps will do too. Using the aftermarket harness as an intermediary makes this wiring process become a simple matching of wire colors with the harness from new radio to the intermediate harness. This is not particularly well documented either, but it was sufficient to get the job done. Once this is done you simply plug one end of the completed harness into the radio and the other into the existing car plug(s)- very simple, and allows the new radio to be removed and the old one reinstalled because you leave the old connectors intact.

-Could not find a well fitting mounting kit, but what I got worked well enough - just looks a little cheap. NOTE: This is dependent on what aftermarket kits are available for your car and is not a function of the Kenwood radio. If you have a different car you may find a mounting kit with a perfect fit.

After all is said an done it was a process that turned out pretty well except for the mounting kit faceplate - I will review that elsewhere. The radio (after upgrade) works reliably and the support of the different CD music file formats and the USB stick are real pluses for me. I will try to post a photo of the completed installation when I get a chance.
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on September 5, 2013
I installed this unit in my 02 Ford Escape. The only extra items I needed were the tools to remove the old stereo and the Metra 95-5817 In-Dash Receiver Kit. The receiver kit made it fit nice into the dash, but its not strictly necessary if you don't mind ugly gaps. To install I just cut the old harness off and wired the unit in by connecting the corresponding wires using the diagram provided with the unit and a wiring diagram for my car.

After the install the unit has been very satisfactory. I loaded all my songs on a usb drive and plugged it into the port and it plays the songs from the drive. I like that I can arrange all the songs however I want to in folders on the thumb drive and the stereo will play the songs by folder.

The sound that comes out of it is better than what I was getting from my stock stereo and the radio reception appears to be as good as ever. I also like the fact that I can set the display to a darker color and turn off the text so that my dash doesn't look like a disco ball. I hate bright stereo displays at night.

I only have a couple complaints. First of all I had to look online to figure out how to set the clock and the display color because I couldn't find it in the manual. And there is no shuffle-all option when playing the songs from a USB drive.
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on November 23, 2013
Really happy with this. Less than $130 and I have Sirius XM again!. But warned this is an XM receiver not a Sirius receiver. The companies have merged but you will need to subscribe the "everything" package if you want to keep your football feeds and Howard Stern

Stereo is rated at 50 watts RMS and is loud enough for me. People that like having their ears bleed may want to add an amp.

Only con, unit doesn't have BlueTooth
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on December 8, 2013
It's a really great radio for the price. I bought this for my 2002 Toyota Celica. It fits amazing, and I was able to change the LED colors to the team colors of my high school. My only problem with it is it can be very distracting at night. The LED glare catches the corner of my eye perfectly, and it definitely bothers me.
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on December 7, 2014
Spent a couple of hours taking apart my lower dash to install this radio. After I finished the install I was excited to see how this unit sounded. Played a CD and loved the sound and look of this unit. I ejected the CD and that's where things went south. The CD ejected and I removed it but the unit keeps telling me to "Please Eject" and the eject motor keeps running. I've tried inserting another CD hoping it would stop trying to eject but nothing works. Now I get to pull my dash apart again, uninstall this unit, request a return from Amazon, box it up and wait until I get another head unit. Think I'll just run to Walmart and grab a new Pioneer system. (This is the first time I've purchased a Kenwood receiver) I guess every company makes a lemon or two and I was just the lucky recipient of Kenwood's lemon.
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on January 8, 2015
The Bad:
1 - No setting on this unit is simple to access. You need to go through several steps and clicks to get where you want e.g. adjust bass or treble.
2 - The screen text is not very pleasant and it is sometimes hard to read e.g. hard to read the time when clock is set below the main screen text.
3 - The face lights are too bright and tiring especially if you drive for a long time at night. You can't dim it enough (only one notch) and can't turn the unit lights off.
4 - The phone and noise canceling features are not so wonderful.
5 - Does not work well with 2 Ohm speakers. You can't turn it up or you would get a lot of unwanted noise.
6 - Sticks out of the dash by 1/2 an inch.
The Good:
1 - It works.
2 - The flashing panel lights work perfect for low riders.
3 - Playing music from you smartphone is fun.
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on October 2, 2013
Best radio I've ever had by far. The extra accessories were a bit pricey, such as the sterring wheel adapter but well worth every penny. I absolutely love it. Plays my ipod, cd, aux, etc. And you can change the color to your preferance. Its also so much louder than my factory disk changer that came in my yukon. No regrets!!!!! Thank you.
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on April 13, 2015
Installed in a 1999 Camry with stock speakers (components in the doors). I expected to extract more/better sound with the parametric equalizer and the many other audio adjustments this deck has. It is better than the stock head unit was but not as big a difference as I had hoped it would be. I realize that's probably the speakers as much as the head unit but I was hoping for more. The user interface is not very intuitive but I was able to get a close match to the dash lighting color. The unit can be hard to read in daylight, especially if you wear polarized sunglasses. Also, I wired it to the car's dimmer lead but it doesn't dim when the headlights come on. Not sure if that's because the car has DRLs or if I should have used the regular illumination lead from the car harness.
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on August 18, 2015
Used as a direct replacement on my 1st gen Nissan Xterra, fit using the steel ears of the factory radio perfectly, better sound on the same stock speakers, Would have given it 5 stars but navigating through large MP3 libraries is be a bit of a pain, or navigating in general I found could be a little better, but only a negligible complaint.
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