JVC KW-R500

Fits your dash and looks fantastic
Make a statement in your dash with this bold JVC CD receiver — it'll look right at home in your large dash opening and it'll give you the great sound and features you want. JVC's Separated Variable Color display lets you change the illumination to perfectly complement your dash lighting.

Great for iPod®, plus control Pandora®
Once you plug your iPod or iPhone® into the convenient front-panel USB input, you can use the KW-R500's oversized knob and buttons to navigate your music library. And with your iPhone connected, you can play your Pandora® Internet Radio stations from your dash, and even skip and rate songs like you do online. Plus JVC puts one auxiliary input on the front panel and another on the rear, so you're all set for adding more audio sources.

Higher-power USB connection
JVC upped the power in their USB port, which lets you keep your smartphone charged, even when it's doing several tasks at once. And with your smartphone connected, you can listen to its internal memory as one source and access the little microSD card as another.

Want to keep your car's steering wheel audio controls?
In most vehicles, you can use an adapter (not included) to connect your vehicle's steering wheel controls to this JVC stereo. Connect a few wires, then program the adapter for your particular car and the JVC, and you'll retain the convenience of your steering wheel controls.

Product Highlights:

    General features:
    • CD receiver with built-in MOSFET amplifier (20 watts RMS CEA-2006/50 peak x 4 channels)
    • plays CDs, CD-Rs, and CD-RWs, including discs loaded with MP3 and WMA files
    • adjustable illumination (you can select different colors for the display and controls)
    • fits double-DIN (4"-tall) dash openings
    • remote control
    Audio features:
    • built-in iPod and iPhone controls
    • iEQ 3-band parametric equalizer
    • 24-bit digital-to-analog converter
    • subwoofer level control
    Expandability:
    • works with JVC Bluetooth adapter
    • inputs: front-panel USB input, front and rear auxiliary inputs
    • outputs: 4-channel preamp outputs (2.5-volt front, rear/sub)
    Other info:

    Why replace your factory radio?

    Two good reasons - sound quality and cool features. A new car stereo offers power that's superior to most factory radios, along with more sophisticated tone controls. And most car stereos offer built-in or optional features that add safety and fun to life in your car, including inputs for your iPod or MP3 player, Bluetooth connectivity for hands-free cell phone calls, satellite radio or HD Radio reception, and connections for building an audio system in your car.

    Hands-on research

    What's in the box?

    Download owner's manual

    • Double-DIN AM/FM CD receiver (with 10-amp ATC fuse inserted into chassis)
    • Sleeve (installed with 4 screws)
    • Trim ring (installed)
    • Wiring harness
    • Wireless remote control (RM-RK52)
    • CR2025 3V Lithium battery (installed)
    • 8 Pan head ISO-mount machine screws (M5 x 8mm)
    • 4 Flat head ISO-mount machine screws (M5 x 6mm)
    • 2 Radio removal tools
    • Instructions (Eng/Fre/Spa)
    • Installation/Connection Manual (Eng/Fre/Spa)
    • US Warranty Sheet
    • Canadian Warranty Card
    • Product Registration Card/Questionnaire
    • "Caution!" note (attached to wiring harness)

    Features and Specs

    General
    CEA-2006 Compliant Yes
    RMS Power Output 20 watts
    Peak Output 50 watts
    RMS Power Bandwidth 20-20kHz
    Preamp Outputs 4-channel
    Sub Preamp Outputs No
    Switchable Rear Preamp Outputs Yes
    Video Screen No
    Preamp Voltage 2.5 volts
    Display Color Variable
    Key Button Color Variable
    EQ Bands 3
    Wireless Remote Yes
    Steering Wheel Control Compatible Adapter required
    Parts Warranty 1 Year
    Labor Warranty 1 Year
    Expandability
    AUX Input Front/Rear
    Audio/video Input
    USB Input Front
    Memory Card Slot USB memory
    Bluetooth Compatible Optional
    Satellite Radio Ready No
    HD Radio No
    Navigation ---
    iPod Compatibility
    Full size Classic/5Gen
    Nano 7/6/5/4/3/2/1
    Touch 5/4/3/2/1
    Mini No
    iPhone 5S/5C/5/4S/4/3GS/3G/2G
    Tuner
    FM Sensitivity 9.3 dBf
    European Tuning Yes
    Seek/Scan Seek
    Radio Data System No

    Product Research

    Disc Playback
    USB/iPod/Aux Connectivity
    Radio Functions
    Audio Section
    Display Features
    Bluetooth/Remote Control

    Disc Playback

    Disc Compatibility: The unit features a single disc player that will playback CD-Audio, CD-Text, and finalized CD-R/CD-RW audio discs.

    MP3/WMA Playback: The KW-R500 can play MP3 (8-320 kbps)/WMA files (32-192 kbps) that have been recorded on CD-R and CD-RW discs. The disc must be recorded in one of the following formats: ISO 9660 Level 1/Level 2, Joliet, Romeo or Windows long file. Each disc can have a maximum of 8 folder hierarchies, 255 folders, and no more than a total of 512 files and/or folders on each disc. The unit also supports IDTag3 (version 1.0, 1.1, 2.2, 2.3 or 2.4) for album and artist information from MP3 or WMA files.

    Track/Folder List: The Track/Folder List displays a list of MP3/WMA folders and tracks on a loaded CD, so you can easily access your music. The Track/Folder List will also display the list of track titles on a CD Text disc.

    Random/Repeat Modes: The JVC KW-R500 offers the following Repeat and Random playback modes for your audio CDs.

    • Repeat: Track Repeat (plays the current track repeatedly), Folder Repeat (plays all tracks of the current folder repeatedly), Off (cancels repeat function)
    • Random: Folder Random (plays all tracks of the current folder, then the tracks of the next folder in random), All Random (plays all tracks of the current disc at random), Off (cancels random function)

    Disc Resume: If you change the source, playback also stops (without ejecting the disc). Next time you select CD for the playback source, the disc will start from where it has been stopped previously.

    Off Insert/Eject: A CD disc can be inserted or ejected with the power off. When a disc is inserted with the power off, the unit will automatically power up and begin playback.

    Disc Protection: If the ejected disc is not removed within 15 seconds, the disc is automatically inserted again into the loading slot to protect it from dust. The source will change to CD, and the disc will begin playback, even if you have another source selected at the time.

    Mounting: For proper disc playback you must install the unit within 30-degrees of horizontal.

    USB/iPod/Aux Connectivity

    USB Port: The JVC KW-R500 features a front panel USB 2.0 type-A port behind a sliding cover for connection of a USB mass-storage class device; such as select Android smartphones (Froyo/Gingerbread OS only), portable digital audio players, or USB thumbdrives. The USB port enables audio playback and control of MP3(8-320 kbps)/WMA (32-192 kbps) audio files stored on a portable USB mass-storage class device formatted in FAT 12/16/32. The KW-R500 can recognize up to 255 folders (255 files per folder) and 65,025 total files. The unit also supports IDTag3 (version 1.0, 1.1, 2.2, 2.3 or 2.4) for album and artist information from MP3/WMA files (up to 60 characters). The unit will also supports charging of USB mass-storage class devices through its front-panel USB port (max. 1A).

    Note: You cannot connect a USB device via a USB hub or Multi-Card Reader to this unit.

    iPod/iPhone Direct: The JVC KW-R500's front-panel USB port also acts as an iPod/iPhone high-speed direct connection when used with the USB/iPod cable that came with your iPod/iPhone. An additional iPod cable is available (469USBPOD, sold separately) so you can leave one at home and one in the car. If you have an iPod nano (7th gen), iPod touch (5th gen), or iPhone 5; use the Lighting-to-USB cable that came with your Apple device to connect to the head unit. Using either cable allows audio playback, music navigation, information display, and charging of select iPod/iPhone models from the JVC in-dash head unit.

    iPod DAC Bypass: The USB connection allows your iPod/iPhone's stored music to be loaded instantly to the head unit and sound quality to be maximized through the head unit's 24-bit D/A converter, allowing for a Signal to Noise ratio up to 98dB. The JVC head unit supports audio playback of music, podcasts, audiobooks, and music apps stored on your iPod or iPhone.

    iPod/iPhone Control: You can choose to operate your iPod/iPhone through the JVC head unit's front-panel controls, from its clickwheel/touchscreen, or via a streamed app from your iPhone.

    • Head Unit: From the head unit's front-panel controls you can search for music by Playlist, Artist, Album, Song, Podcast, Genre, and Composer. Once a Playlist or Category is selected, the content is listed in alphabetical order. The KW-R500 also supports Repeat (file/all) and Random (album/all) playback functions of your iPod/iPhone.
    • iPod: You can choose to navigate your iPod or iPhone's stored music from its clickwheel or touchscreen, like you are accustomed to during normal usage.
    • External (App Mode): External Mode lets you enjoy audio content from your downloaded music Apps (such as iHeartRadio, SiriusXM, Last.fm, Rhapsody, & Slacker) and driver assistant Apps (such as Trapster) streamed to your Apple iPhone, through the JVC KW-R500. You will continue to use your iPhone's touchscreen to navigate and view your apps; the head unit will only display the clock and "EXT Mode".  
    Note: Access to your iPhone's downloaded application will depend on the availability of a cellular and/or WiFi network for purposes of allowing your iPhone to connect to the Internet.

    Pandora App: The Pandora App (free) lets you play music from the Pandora music service through the JVC KW-R500 using your connected Apple iPhone, via the USB/iPod connector cable (included with your iPhone). The JVC KW-R500 provides control over the Pandora music service and displays Artist, Album, and Song information. You can select Pandora stations from your station list; you can sort the station list by date or A-Z. You can also skip song tracks within a station. In addition, you can also give songs a thumbs up/down and bookmark songs/artists. To access Pandora you must have an Apple iPhone (iOS 5.0 or later) with the latest version of the Pandora application from Apple's iTunes App Store. Your iPhone will need an active Data Plan account with connection to the Internet via 3G, EDGE, or WiFi. You will also need a Pandora music service account.

    Note: Access to the Pandora service will depend on the availability of a cellular and/or WiFi network for purposes of allowing your iPhone to connect to the Internet. Pandora is not supported in Canada and only available in the United States.

    iPod Display: The KW-R500 will display your iPod/iPhone's music file information, when in Head Unit and iPod mode (not in External mode), or listening to Pandora Internet Radio. The head unit can display Track number, Elapsed playing time, Artist name, Song title, and Album label.

    iPod Charging: The head unit's USB connection provides 1A of current to power and charge your connected iPod/iPhone when your vehicle's ignition switch is set to the 'ACC' or 'On' position.  If your iPod/iPhone has no initial battery charge, then the unit will not recognize it.

    iPod Compatibility Chart: The JVC Arsenal KW-R500 is "Made for iPod/iPhone" compatible and supports the following iPod/iPhone model features (as of 9/25/2013):

    iPod Model Generation Tested Version Media Type Control Type Display Type Pandora app Charge
    Audio Video Head Unit iPod App mode Artist/Song Text Track Info
    video 5th 1.3 Y N Y N N Y Y N Y
    classic 80GB 1.1.2 Y N Y Y N Y Y N Y
    120GB 2.0.1 Y N Y Y N Y Y N Y
    160GB 2.0.4 Y N Y Y N Y Y N Y
    nano 1st 1.3.1 Y N Y N N Y Y N Y
    2nd 1.1.3 Y N Y Y N Y Y N Y
    3rd 1.1.3 Y N Y Y N Y Y N Y
    4th 1.0.4 Y N Y Y N Y Y N Y
    5th 1.0.2 Y N Y Y N Y Y N Y
    6th 1.2 PC Y N Y Y N Y Y N Y
    7th 1.2 Y N Y Y N Y Y N Y
    touch 1st 2.2.1 Y N Y Y N Y Y N Y
    2nd 4.2.1 Y N Y Y N Y Y N Y
    3rd 5.1.1 Y N Y Y N Y Y N Y
    4th 6.1.3 Y N Y Y N Y Y N Y
    5th 7.0.2 Y N Y Y N Y Y N Y
    iPhone 2G 3.1.3 Y N Y Y Y Y Y N Y
    3G 4.2.1 Y N Y Y Y Y Y N Y
    3GS 5.1.1 Y N Y Y Y Y Y Y Y
    4 7.0.2 Y N Y Y Y Y Y Y Y
    4S 7.0.2 Y N Y Y Y Y Y Y Y
    5 7.0.2 Y N Y Y Y Y Y Y Y
    5C 7.0.2 Y N Y Y Y Y Y Y Y
    5S 7.0.2 Y N Y Y Y Y Y Y Y
    iPad 1 5.1.1 Y N Y Y Y Y Y Y N
    2 7.0.2 Y N Y Y Y Y Y Y N
    3 7.0.2 Y N Y Y Y Y Y Y N
    4 7.0.2 Y N Y Y Y Y Y Y N
    mini 7.0.2 Y N Y Y Y Y Y Y Y
    Note: Apple iPod/iPhone software updates may change functionality results. If you download a newer software version, you may need to reset the head unit and your iPod/iPhone to regain functionality. If this doesn't work, you may need to wait until a newer software update is available.

    Dual Auxiliary Inputs: A front-panel & rear-panel stereo minijack are provided to allow the connection of portable audio sources. Simply connect your portable digital music player to either the unit's front or rear auxiliary input, and you can listen to the audio from the portable player through the speakers in your mobile audio system.

    Radio Functions

    AM/FM Tuner: The JVC KW-R500 features a built-in AM/FM tuner with manual, seek, and preset tuning.

    Preset Tuning: You can store a total of 18 FM stations presets and 6 AM station presets. The radio allows you to set your AM/FM stations manually or automatically.

    Radio Timer: You can tune into a preset station at a specific time regardless of the head unit's current source. You can activate the Radio Timer once, daily, or turn it completely off.

    IF Filter: You can also switch the tuner's IF filter to Wide or Auto to increase/decrease the sensitivity.

    Mono: If an analog FM stereo broadcast is hard to receive, you can manually switch the tuner to Mono operation.

    US/European Tuning: You can set the built-in AM/FM tuner between US standard and European tuning spacing.

    Audio Section

    24 Bit D/A Converter: The JVC KW-R500 utilizes a 24-bit digital to analog converter for superior CD sound quality.

    MOSFET Amplifier: The KW-R500 is equipped with a MOSFET amplifier. Compared to conventional power supplies, the MOSFET amplification circuit is smaller and more efficient, and it delivers increased power with less distortion and absolutely zero on/off switching noise. More power means louder and cleaner music at higher volumes because you're not pushing the limits of the amplification circuit.

    CEA2006 Compliant: The power specifications for the KW-R500 are compliant with the CEA2006 Mobile Amplifier Power Testing and Measurement standards from the Consumer Electronics Association (CEA). These standards were developed as a way to equitably compare power specs from model to model and between manufacturers. The power output specs for the KW-R500 are as follows:

    • CEA2006 Specs: 20 watts RMS x 4 channels (at 4 ohms, 20Hz-20kHz, 1% THD-N)
    • Maximum Power Output: 50 watts x 4 channels (200 total watts)

    Amplifier Gain Control: When you are using the KW-R500 with factory speakers (or those rated to less than 50 watts peak), the Amplifier Gain Control can limit the amount of power being sent to those speakers. When the Amp Gain Control is set to "low," the volume control ranges from 0 (minimum) to 30 (maximum). When using speakers rated higher than 50 watts peak, you can set the Amp Gain Control to "high," and the volume control will range from 0 to 50.

    Volume Adjust: The input level of each source (other than FM) is adjustable relative to the FM radio volume, so there isn't a significant volume difference when changing sources. Each source is individually adjustable from -5 to +5.

    Pro EQ: The KW-R500 is equipped with JVC's Pro EQ. The integrated equalizer offers 7 preset sound modes (Flat, Natural, Dynamic, Vocal Boost, Bass Boost, User) suitable for the music genre of your choice. The User mode allows you to manually adjust the head unit's 3-band parametric EQ (Frequency, Level, and Q-Factor).

    Pro EQ
    Frequency Level Q
    Bass 60, 80, 100, 200 Hz +/- 12 dB (-6 to +6) 1.0, 1.25, 1.5, 2.0
    Midrange 0.5, 1.0, 1.5, 2.5 kHz +/- 12 dB (-6 to +6) 0.75, 1.0, 1.25
    Treble 10.0, 12.5, 15.0, 17.5 khz +/- 12 dB (-6 to +6) Fixed

    Source Link EQ: This feature allows you to store Pro EQ bass, middle and treble tone settings for each source (CD, AM/FM, Aux, USB, iPod, and Pandora).

    Loud (Loudness): This feature boosts low and high frequencies to produce a well-balanced sound at a low volume level. You can turn this feature on or off.

    2.5V/4CH Preamp Output: The KW-R500 is equipped with two pair of 2.5V preamp outputs (Front, Rear/SW). You can set the Rear/SW preamp outputs for connecting a pair of full-range rear speakers (through an external amplifier) or for connecting a subwoofer (through an external amplifier). When set for rear speakers, the rear outputs operate with the unit's fader control. When set for subwoofer, the outputs are non-fading.

    Subwoofer Controls: When the unit's Rear/SW preamp output is set to Subwoofer, you can adjust the head unit's subwoofer level between 0 and 8 (separate from the main volume level). You can also adjust the low-pass filter and activate a high-pass filter.

    • Low-Pass Filter: When the unit's Rear/SW preamp output is set to Subwoofer, you can set the cutoff frequency of the low-pass filter at 55Hz, 85Hz, or 120Hz.
    • High-Pass Filter: When the unit's Rear/SW preamp output is set to Subwoofer, you can also activate a high-pass filter (fixed at low-pass filter frequency) for the unit's front & rear channels (speaker- or preamp-level), so low frequency signals are cut off from your system's front & rear speakers.

    Key-Touch Tone: The in-dash head unit provides an audible beep to confirm button operation. This function can be turned On or Off.

    Display Features

    Variable Color LCD & Key Illumination: The JVC KW-R500 features 29 color presets for the LCD and button illumination. You can choose one of these color presets or select the ColorFlow mode which scrolls through all 29 color presets. Additionally, there is a User preset, allowing you to individually adjust the intensity of Red, Green, and Blue from 0 to 31; resulting in approximately 30,000 custom color options. The chosen color preset or custom color can be applied to the display panel and the backlighting for all the buttons except the eject and display buttons (they remains red). You can choose to use the same color for the LCD display and button illumination, or use a separate color for each one. You can also select a different color for daytime and nighttime in regards to the unit's LCD and button illumination.

    Brightness: The unit offers an adjustable display and button illumination brightness level (0-31) for day and nighttime driving.

    Display/Button Illumination Dimmer: The display/button illumination dimmer can be set to Off (normal brightness at all times), On (display/button illumination is always dimmed), or Auto (display dims when 12-volts is applied to the orange/white illumination lead).

    2-DIN Chassis: The JVC KW-R500 has a 2-DIN chassis (also known as Double DIN), and will fit in many vehicles with a large dash opening. The unit can be ISO-mounted using factory brackets, or Euro-mounted using the supplied mounting sleeve. As always, please consult Crutchfield's Outfit My Car to verify fit with your vehicle.

    Bluetooth/Remote Control

    Optional Bluetooth: The unit's rear-panel auxiliary input can also be used to connect JVC's KS-BTA100 Bluetooth Adapter (105KSBTA10, sold separately). The KS-BTA100 must be plugged into the rear-panel auxiliary input, and not the front-panel auxiliary input. The front-panel auxiliary input does not support Bluetooth. The KS-BTA100 gives you hands-free communication from your compatible Bluetooth mobile phone and wireless streaming audio from a Bluetooth enabled digital audio player. The optional JVC Bluetooth Adapter includes a super-sensitive microphone, an Answer/End button, and playback controls. The KW-R500 can be set to automatically mute any music audio to your vehicle's speakers so you can listen to your telephone call using your car speakers.

    Note: Due to the differences in Bluetooth technology, some Bluetooth enabled devices may be incompatible, function improperly, or may not support all features when used with the JVC KW-R500. Visit the JVC Mobile Entertainment Bluetooth Support Page for a complete list of compatible Bluetooth enabled devices.

    Wireless Remote Control: The KW-R500 comes supplied with a wireless remote control (RM-RK52). The remote contains Attenuator, Sound, Source, Tracking, and Volume functions. The remote operates off of a single CR2025 3V Lithium-cell battery (included).

    Steering Wheel Remote Compatibility: The head unit features an OEM steering wheel remote control input wire (blue/yellow) within the included wiring harness that lets you keep your vehicle's factory radio steering wheel remote controls when used with an optional steering wheel audio control adapter (sold separately). Please consult Crutchfield's Outfit My Car to see if your vehicle is compatible.

    Our Product Research Team

    At Crutchfield, you'll get detailed, accurate information that's hard to find elsewhere. That's because we have our own in-house Product Research team — they open the box, verify contents, check the owner's manual, and record dimensions, features and specs. We stay on top of new products and technologies to help people make informed choices.

    JVC KW-R500 Reviews

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    great unit for good price

    Written By anthonyjr21092, Warwick, RI on Friday, January 31, 2014

    • "Coolness Factor"
    • Build Quality
    • Ease of Use
    • Sound Quality
    • Value

    Looks and sounds great in my gmc sierra with bose system especially for good price

    JVC KW-R500

    Written By Anonymous, Carrollton Georgia on Thursday, January 09, 2014

    Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)

    • "Coolness Factor"
    • Build Quality
    • Ease of Use
    • Sound Quality
    • Value

    Outstanding head unit for my Nissan Titan. Easy installation . Kit included everything. I love this radio.

    Pros: Love the compatibility with Pandora and my Droid RAZR phone.

    Cons: Didn't buy sooner.

    More bang for your buck

    Written By Boost, Victorville California on Tuesday, December 17, 2013

    Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)

    • "Coolness Factor"
    • Build Quality
    • Ease of Use
    • Sound Quality
    • Value

    Can't go wrong with JVC, I like their products! Especially when you purchase from Crutchfield, can't beat their prices! Thanx again!

    Pros: Good sound quality! More bang for your buck! And looks nice!

    Cons: It's not a DVD player but you get what you pay for.

    JVC KW-R500

    Written By Corey M., Portage, In on Monday, December 16, 2013

    Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)

    • "Coolness Factor"
    • Build Quality
    • Ease of Use
    • Sound Quality
    • Value

    Love it..... Great CD & all proper kit equip. came w/.....

    Pros: Great CD player, USB connect & Aux. remote is awesome too. Plays & sounds great.....!!!

    Cons: No Bluetooth w it.... Separate purchase & (cost) $$...

    JVC KW-R500

    Written By DM, Atlanta GA on Wednesday, November 27, 2013

    Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)

    • "Coolness Factor"
    • Build Quality
    • Ease of Use
    • Sound Quality