Video: Kenwood KDC-BT742U CD Receiver
Ken Nail has written about car audio for Crutchfield since 2003, after four years as Crutchfield Sales Advisor, and 10 years as a music teacher. He's an avid music listener, whose favorites are classical and film music. When not chained to a desk, Ken spends most of his time training for triathlons and marathons, and likes getting outside for backpacking, downhill skiing, and bicycle touring. He attended West Virginia University, where he received a Master's Degree in Music Performance and a Bachelor's Degree in History.
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Ralph Graves is one of Crutchfield's blog editors, and part of the company's social media team. He writes about home audio/video gear, specializing in Apple-related and wireless technologies. Ralph holds a master's degree in music composition, and his works have been released on various labels. He's served as product manager for an independent classical and world music label, produced several recordings, and worked extensively in public broadcasting. Since 1984 he's hosted a weekly classical music program on WTJU, and is also active as a blogger and podcaster.
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Crutchfield experts Ken and Ralph discuss the Kenwood KDC-BT742U CD receiver. This stereo features built-in Bluetooth® connectivity and direct control of your iPod® via the stereo's handy USB connection.
Ken: Hi, I'm Ken.
Ralph: And I'm Ralph and we're here today in the Crutchfield studios to talk about the Kenwood KDC-BT742U CD receiver. Why? Well, because for the price, it's packed with a lot of great features.
Ken: There's built in Bluetooth® for hands-free calling. There's a USB input for direct connection and control of your iPod®, and there's a whole bunch of great sound controls too.
Ralph: Right. Now let's take a closer look at some of these features. The Bluetooth in this system is designed by Parrot, an industry leader in Bluetooth technology, and that gives it a lot of flexibility.
Ken: Great features. You can download your phonebook right into it, even set up six speed dial numbers if you want. You can answer or end a call just as simply as pressing a button and it has an integrated mic with adjustable gain so you don't have to shout to be heard when you're talking.
Ralph: I like that integrated mic feature because it means that I don't have to run an extra cable through the car. It also lets you switch from hands-free mode to private mode so if there's other people in the car and you don't necessarily want them to hear what you're talking about press the button and the call's back to the phone.
Ken: We talked about the USB connection and iPod control. Let's go ahead and hook up an iPod.
Ken: The USB is right in the front behind that little door. Now you can use the cable that came with your iPod or purchase one from Kenwood and leave it in the car.
Ralph: Right. And you can also control the iPod either from the stereo or from the device itself.
Ken: I know when my son's in the car, he wants control of the iPod.
Ralph: Oh yeah.
Ken: Finding songs is easy. There's an alphabet search so you can go right through the alphabet when you're searching. There's also percentage search. You can jump up to 10% of your files at a time.
Ralph: So if you had, like, uh, a thousand songs.
Ken: You could jump a hundred at a time.
Ralph: Yeah. Now sound controls with this device are as simple or as hands on as you want to make 'em to get the best sound in your car. For example, the equalizer has seven presets so you can just punch in one of those.
Ken: Or you can dive into the 3-band EQ and individually adjust the highs, mids, and lows.
Ralph: Right. Now the Digital Signal Processor also has the same kind of options. You can select for the cabin size of your car, the speaker size, the location, also where do you want the sweet spot? Do you want it on the driver's seat? Do you want it on the passenger's seat?
Ken: And if you want to be more hands on you can use manual Digital Time Alignment, and there's a set of high-pass and low-pass crossovers so you can adjust what frequencies go to what speakers.
Ralph: Now we have to mention what we think is our favorite feature about this.
Ken: Which is called "Favorite."
Ralph: Of course.
Ken: Right here in the middle is a button labeled "Favorite." You can set six presets on there. Now not just radio stations, you can even set a preset as a favorite iPod playlist.
Ken: So let's go to one of my favorite playlists.
Ralph: And there it is.
Ken: And we're all set.
Ralph: Now if you'd like to learn more about the Kenwood KDC-BT742U visit our website at crutchfield.com/bt742.
Ken: Or give us a call at 1-800-555-9408.