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Kenwood EZ-500

CD/MP3/WMA receiver (New Stock)

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  • Kenwood EZ-500

    Front

  • Kenwood EZ-500

    Front Right

  • Kenwood EZ-500

    Remote

Item #: 113EZ500
 

Review Summary

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Our take on the Kenwood EZ-500

by Robert Ferency-Viars
Kenwood

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.

Kenwood's user-friendly EZ-500 CD receiver starts with a full feature package and caps it off with an exciting faceplate design. The fold-down, detachable face sports two large rotary knobs, simple controls, and a highly visible white LED display. The roomy button layout makes it easy to access all receiver functions, and you can select red or green button illumination to complement the dash lighting in nearly any car.

The extras are on board in spades. MP3/WMA playback allows you to listen to up to 10 hours of your favorite music on a single disc in your car. Sound adjustments come in the form of System Q Sound Controls — a 3-band equalizer and six preset tone curves. You'll get clear and efficient sound when you use the high- and low-pass filters to route the signal to the appropriate speakers.

Two sets of preamp outputs let you add additional power, and you can turn off the internal amp to improve the performance of your outboard amps. Use the EZ-500's auxiliary input to play your portable music player in the car (or a SIRIUS or XM satellite radio tuner). Kenwood includes a wireless remote for convenient control, but you'll probably prefer the feel of the oversized, rubber-grip knobs.

See more info on this item

Highlights:

  • fold-down, detachable face
  • white, dot-matrix display
  • plays CDs, CD-Rs, CD-RWs, and MP3 and WMA files on disc
  • CR-2 tuner
  • 18 FM/6 AM presets
  • HD Radio-ready (requires Kenwood HD Radio tuner)
  • System Q Sound Control
  • 6 preset EQ curves ("Rock," "Top 40," "Jazz," "Easy," "Pops," and "Flat")
  • bass, treble, and midrange controls
  • Speaker Setting function adjusts output with three settings (factory speakers, larger aftermarket speakers, smaller aftermarket speakers)
  • source tone memory
  • satellite radio controls (SIRIUS or XM subscription, tuner, and antenna required to receive the satellite radio signal) — service is available only in the lower 48 states, not available in Alaska, Hawaii, or U.S. territories
  • CD changer controls
  • rear auxiliary input
  • 2 sets of preamp outputs (rear outputs can be switched to subwoofer mode)
  • high-pass and low-pass crossovers
  • wireless remote
  • clock
  • 22 watts RMS/50 peak x 4 channels
  • CD frequency response 10-20,000 Hz
  • CD signal-to-noise ratio 105 dB
  • FM sensitivity 9.3 dBf
  • warranty: 1 year
  • Our 60-day money-back guarantee

Hands-on research from the Crutchfield Labs (what are the Labs?)

Features and Specs
General
CEA-2006 Compliant
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No
RMS Power Output
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22 watts
Peak Output
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50 watts
RMS Power Bandwidth
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30-20kHz
Preamp Outputs
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4-channel
Sub Preamp Outputs
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No
Switchable Rear Preamp Outputs
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Yes
Preamp Voltage
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2 volts
Display Color
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White
Key Button Color
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Red or Green
EQ Bands
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3
Wireless Remote
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Yes
Steering Wheel Control Compatible
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Parts Warranty
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1 Year
Labor Warranty
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1 Year
Expandability
AUX Input
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Rear
USB Input
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No
Memory Card Slot
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No
Bluetooth Compatible
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No
Satellite Radio Ready
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Both
HD Radio
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Optional
Navigation
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iPod Compatibility
Full size
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Nano
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Touch
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Mini
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iPhone
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Tuner
FM Sensitivity
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9.3 dBf
European Tuning
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Yes
Seek/Scan
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Seek
Radio Data System
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No
Product Research
What's in the box?

Download owner's manual

  • AM/FM/CD receiver with 10-amp fuse inserted into chassis
  • Sleeve
  • Face
  • Hard plastic face case
  • Trim ring
  • Wiring harness
  • Wireless remote control (RC-505)
  • 2 "AA" batteries
  • 2 Removal tools
  • 4 Panhead ISO-mount screws
  • 4 Countersunk ISO-mount screws
  • 1 Face fixing screw (2mm dia. x 4mm--black)
  • 1 Face fixing screw (2.6mm dia. x 12mm--black)
  • 2 Face fixing screws (2mm dia. x 6mm--brass)
  • Instruction Manual (English/French/Spanish)
  • Warranty Card
  • Kenwood Car Audio Passport

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.

Features
CD Changer Controls
Note

Features

Satellite Radio Ready: You can connect a satellite radio tuner to the KDC-MP5028 in a number of ways. The unit is directly compatible with the Sirius SIR-KEN1 Satellite Tuner for Kenwood (item # 607SIRKEN1). The Terk XMDirect universal XM Satellite Radio tuner (209XMD1000) can be connected to and controlled by the head unit when used with the XMDirect Smart Adapter for Kenwood (209XMDKEN1). In addition, you can connect an independently controlled "plug 'n play" system, such as the Delphi SKYFi or Kenwood Here2Everywhere systems, to the auxiliary audio input connections on this unit.

Note: In addition to the optional satellite tuner, you will also need the proper antenna and a subscription to Sirius or XM Satellite Radio.

MP3/WMA Playback: This unit can play MP3 and WMA files recorded on CD-ROM, CD-R, and CD-RW discs in ISO9660 Level 1/Level 2, Joliet, and Romeo formats. Each disc should have a maximum of 8 directory levels, 50 folders, and 255 files per folder. A total of up to 512 MP3/WMA files and folders can be played back by this unit. During MP3/WMA playback, the unit displays any recorded ID3 Tag information.

Quad 1-Bit D-A Converters: The Ez500 features Integrated Quad 1-Bit Digital-to-Analog converters for superb CD sound. Four D-A converters, two for each channel, improve playback sound quality, including musical detail and resolution. Using 2 converters for each channel reduces distortion by half.

Zero-Bit Mute: This unit features independent left and right channel zero-bit mute circuits. During silent passages, the digital-to-analog converter is shut off, yielding absolute silence between songs.

Bass Management System (B.M.S.): This unit is equipped with an interface which controls certain special features of B.M.S.-equipped Kenwood amplifiers. This unit, when properly connected, can remotely activate and adjust the amount of bass boost in the amplifier. You can choose between +6dB, +12dB, or +18dB bass boost, or flat (no boost). In addition, you can lower the bass boost center frequency by 20%, switching between "Normal" and "Low". 

Built-in Amplifier Mute: If this unit's internal amplifier is not being used, it can be switched off to enhance the quality of the preamp output signal quality.

System Q Sound Control: Six EQ curves are preset into memory, allowing you to recall the best preset EQ curve for different types of music. The preset curves are named "Flat", "Rock", "Pops", "Easy", "Top 40", and "Jazz". In addition, you may store your own settings under the "User Memory" EQ curve. Each preset has its own bass, middle, and treble level settings.

Speaker Settings: The Speaker Setting function tailors the System Q Sound Control settings according to the type of speakers in your vehicle. You may select a Speaker Setting of "SP OFF" (flat), "SP O.E.M." (for OEM factory speaker systems), "SP 6*9/6" (for systems with 6" and 6"x9" speakers), or "SP 5/4inch" (for systems with 4" and 5" speakers).

Dual Zone Audio Control: When an external audio source is connected (CD changer, Sirius Radio, or Auxiliary Input source), the Ez500, with its Dual Zone Audio Control, allows you to play the external audio source in one zone, while at the same time play an internal audio source (CD or tuner) in another zone. When Zone 2 is switched on, the output of the front channels becomes different than the rear channel output. You can choose whether you want the external audio source to play through the front channels (sending the internal source to the rear channels), or through the rear channels (sending the internal source to the front channels). When operating in Dual Zone mode, audio adjustments can only be made to the internal source.

Note: If the rear preamp outputs are set to "non-fading", there will be no audio from that output in the dual zone mode.

High-pass Filter: The Ez500 has an adjustable 12dB/octave high-pass filter for the front and rear channels. You can select a cutoff frequency of 100Hz, 125Hz, 170Hz, or Thru (no filter). 

Note: The high pass filter only affects the rear preamp outputs when they are switched to "rear", not "non-fading".

Switchable Rear/Non-Fading Preamp Outputs: You can switch the rear preamp output to a non-fading output for use with subwoofer amps. Once in the non-fading mode, you can adjust the level of that output from -15 to +15 in 2dB steps. In addition, you can choose the cutoff frequency of the NF output's 12dB/octave low-pass filter from 50Hz, 80Hz, 120Hz, or Thru (no filter).

3-Band Equalizer: You can independently adjust the level of three audio bands from -10dB to +10dB: Bass (100Hz), Midrange (1kHz) and Treble (10kHz).

Source Tone Memory: This feature allows you to store bass, middle and treble tone settings for each source (CD, FM, AM).

CR-2 Tuner: This unit uses Kenwood's CR-2 tuner provides high signal strength for clear radio reception. The tuner incorporates an Automatic Noise Reduction Circuit (ANRC), along with the Clean Reception System Circuit (CRSC), for improved rejection of distortion due to multi-path. You can choose one of three tuning modes: Auto 1 (seek tuning), Auto 2 (cycles through and tunes the selected band's preset stations only with each button press), or Manual.

HD Radio Ready: The Ez500 is HD Radio ready. With an optional Kenwood HD Radio tuner (item # 113HR100TR), you will be able to receive digital AM/FM broadcasts from local stations where available. This new technology will significantly improve audio quality and reception, as well as include information such as artist name and song titles or traffic news, viewable on the receiver's display.

Clean Reception System Circuit (CRSC): This circuit controls multi-path distortion by reducing stereo separation. As stereo separation is reduced, multi-path has less effect on the radio signal, improving reception in areas with tall buildings and mountains. The CRSC feature can be turned on or off.

Direct Access Tuning: When using the remote, you can directly access any radio station by entering the frequency on the numeric keypad.

Station Name Preset (SNPS): This feature allows you to assign names to radio stations. Up to 48 stations can be named. Each name can be up to 8 characters in length.

Disc Name Preset (DNPS): You may assign names to discs played in the internal CD player. Each disc name can be up to 8 characters long, and the receiver has a memory capacity for up to 30 discs. (See below for further DNPS features with CD changers.)

Volume Offset Control: The level of each source may be independently adjusted to prevent radical leaps in output volume when switching from one source to another. The available settings range from -8 to 0.

Attenuator With Smooth Volume Return: The attenuator immediately lowers the volume by a preset level. Smooth Volume Return gradually increases the volume to the original level when the ATT button is pressed a second time, eliminating a jarring change in volume.

CD Read Setting: If there is a problem with the CD player reading a disc with a special format, you can switch to a second CD Read setting which "forces" the player to read the disc. CD Read setting 1 is for normal CDs and MP3 discs, while CD Read setting 2 cannot read MP3/WMA discs.

Disabled System Indicator: A red indicator will blink on the unit after the control panel is removed, warning potential thieves. This feature can be turned On or Off.

Security Code: You may program the unit with a 4-digit security code. Once the unit has been programmed with a security code, the code must be entered to use the unit after it has been disconnected from power.

Display Dimming: This unit is equipped with an orange/white wire that Kenwood calls an illumination lead, however, it acts as a dimmer lead. When the illumination wire of this unit is connected to the headlamp circuit of your vehicle, and you turn your lights on, the display will dim to a preset level. The display brightness is not affected by the vehicle's dimmer control.

Remote Control: The Ez500 comes with the RC-505 wireless remote control, a 22-button full-function remote with a 10-key number pad. It is powered by 2 "AA" batteries (supplied). The dimensions of the remote are: L=5.488", W=1.75", D=1.115".

Auxiliary Input: The Ez500 is equipped with a built-in auxiliary input. There is a set of stereo RCA jacks on a 6" pigtail on the back of the receiver for connecting an external audio source. The Auxiliary input can be activated/deactivated through the menu. When it's activated, you can select one of six names for the source: Aux, TV, Video, Game, Portable or DVD. When deactivated, Auxiliary does not appear as a source. With an optional adapter (item 113CAC1AX or 113KCAS220), you can also turn the unit's CD changer input into a second auxiliary input.

CD Changer Controls

Compatibility: This unit is directly compatible with Kenwood changers manufactured in 1998 or later. If the changer has an O-N switch, the switch will need to be set to the "N" position.

Disc Name Preset (DNPS): When used with a compatible CD changer, this feature allows you to assign names to discs in the changer. Each name can be up to 8 characters in length. The number of names you can store depends on the CD changer that is connected to the head unit.

Disc Name Preset Play (DNPP): Once a disc has been named, you may press the DNPP button on the remote to display the name of each disc for 5 seconds. When the name of the desired disc appears, you can press the OK button on the remote to select the disc for playback.

CD Text/MD Display: When connected to a CD Text capable CD changer or an MD changer, this unit can display disc and track titles for discs encoded with disc and track title information. The text information can be scrolled manually or automatically.

Music Keg Compatible: This unit is fully compatible with the Kenwood Music Keg Digital Music System (models KHD-C710 and KHD-CX910).

Note

Display Illumination/Clock Display: When the unit is in Standby mode, the face/button illumination and clock are "keyed". Pressing and holding the Source (SRC) button turns the unit off completely.

 
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Kenwood EZ-500 Reviews

Average Customer Review:

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4 out of 5

Outstanding EZ Controls!

Written By Dennis, St Louis on Tuesday, February 13, 2007
 
It's not perfect, but perfection is the enemy of good enough. The scrolling display is backwards (Artist-Title) and it doesn't control a sub so good. But the "knobs" are an excellent touch: EZ to use and intuitive. One time setup is not intuitive; keep the manual handy. Installed in a Sonata w/o too many problems. Works perfect with Kenwood Music Keg and PAC steering wheel interface. Happy camper!
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4 out of 5

1st one didnt work, got another one and works good

Written By ryan, Lynden, WA on Sunday, January 28, 2007
 
Ok. When i first recieved this deck i was very excited. I had it installed and it worked fine but then i put a cd in and it said "mecha error". Then the cd drive wouldnt work. I sent it back and got another one and now it works great. I have my ipod hooked up with the aux cables and it works just fine. It is much better than the stock stereo i used to have. The only other bad thing is the controls. They are really confusing but i am starting to get used to them. otherwise i would recommend this deck.
1 out of 1 people found this helpful
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2 out of 5

Not Really Happy

Written By Stakie, Neptune, New Jersey on Sunday, January 21, 2007
Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
 
I bought this deck, for, like some said, for the retro look in a 1990 Supra, plus the SAT ready. I hooked up my Sirius radio to it and that worked fine...for a while. What I mean is, after a couple months, the Sirius just went off. I called Sirius, everything looks good on their end. So I called Kenwood up, and told me to reset the deck. Once doing so, the Sirius fucntion came back.

Moving to 10 months later, the deck will play, but then would just shut off on you. I would have to press the reset button for it to come back on. Also, I would have to turn the volume all the way to like 23-25 for the subs to give out base. Annoying when you're on a road trip, having to pull over, and reset all the functions & menu settings, esp., in a 3 hr road trip, i had to do it at least 3 times. Not good!!!

The deck looks nice, and the features are great, when they're working. But for what the deck is doing now (shutting off, needing to be reset, volume control not working right, losing the Sirius Radio) I'm not sure if I would reccomend anyone this deck. Unless, maybe (it sounds like) I got a bad one in the bunch.

I've been thinking of just getting another one with a added warranty or the EZ700, but again, I'm really wary. We'll see.

I wish some of the owners who has had their deck for at least a year+ give some feedback. Thanks
1 out of 1 people found this helpful
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4 out of 5

Nice head unit with only a few minor flaws

Written By David, McGregor, TX on Saturday, January 13, 2007
Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
 
Let me start off by saying that if you are simply using this as a CD deck, these minor flaws will not affect you. By and large it is a great head unit. It has plenty of power, and allows you to fine-tune the sound very well. I like the way it looks and have very few complaints.

I have it installed in my 2002 Toyota Tacoma along with 4 6x8 Kicker brand speakers. It really powers them better than the stock radio.

The cons:
(1) When hooking up an XM Direct system, it still says "SIRIUS" on the screen when choosing the correct input. I know this is probably due to some contract Kenwood has with Sirius, but it is annoying to an XM subscriber. A generic "SAT" would have been preferable.
(2) You can only see one piece of information at a time on the screen when using XM (or Sirius). I knew it was only a single line, but Id hoped it would be configurable to scroll Artist and Song Title. Nope. It is one or the other. So, I usually leave it on Artist and then if I want to know the song name I have to push a button. This is my biggest gripe.

Pros:
(1) Great sound.
(2) Aux in makes my Ipod sound great. I didnt use the Ipod adapter b/c I needed to hook the XM Direct into the CD changer input.
(3) Dimmable display dims when I turn on my lights.
(4) Switchable red/green button illumination. I wanted red--which is hard to find these days!
(5) Nice remote control!

Overall, I really like this unit especially for the price. I like the fact that it uses a knob on the right hand side instead of the little "joysticks" Kenwood uses in their other models.
3 out of 3 people found this helpful
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5 out of 5

Personal Taste. Excellent Product.

Written By Zach, Pemberton, New Jersey on Friday, September 08, 2006
 
I purchased this headunit originally for my 1988 Chevy 3500 Silverado because I was looking for something on the cheaper end of the spectrum, but a great sounding headunit without all the flashy tacky lights that really make the newer headunits look very cheap.

This headunit it PERFECT. I love the nice retro feel and it blended perfectly into my trucks system. It since then has been moved to a 2000 Cougar where it looks even better. The headunit has a definite classy feel, and an excellent heavy build quality. The lighting isn't overdone, but blends perfectly. Switching from red to green is a nice feature, but the green is harder to see and sets the grey off as a boring look. I would recommend this head unit even over my sisters $500 exceleon unit.

Control-wise, the unit is great. Very minimilist, but as other people have said. The manual will have to be read, and a little extra time will be needed to figure out all the features. But after the day or two, you'll definitley fall for the easy to use layout with the two knobs.

Soundwise, theres nothing more I can say. It sounds terrific through and through. I definitley noticed an improvement on my stock speakers in my Cougar and the Kenwood 4x6's in my truck definitley sounded cleaner. After some fine EQ tuning I could get the sound to a perfection.

I would absolutely recommend this headunit! Easy to install (though all headunits are) and Crutchfield is definitley #1 as usual.
2 out of 3 people found this helpful
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2 out of 5

Was great until it stopped working

Written By Gordon, Los Angeles, CA on Friday, September 08, 2006
Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
 
I was very happy with the unit when I bought it about 6 mos. ago--the sound is great and once you've gotten it set up and tweaked the way you like(which is a fairly complicated process) it's very simple to use.
But gradually the interface between the faceplate and unit seemed to degrade-I'd have to push buttons several times to get them to work, the display would wink out when the plate was touched, etc. I've cleaned the contacts and this helps a little, but the problem has continued to worsen until the controls will not work at all unless I remove/replace the faceplate several times. Even then the unit will spontaneously lose the contact and cut out; and I have to go through the whole procedure again.
I think that the pin/hinge system that holds the faceplate when you remove/replace it is not durable and so will not hold the plate firmly against the contacts after awhile.
I don't think I would get this unit again unless Kenwood has improved this mechanism. If you hardly ever remove the face, though, you might be OK...
2 out of 3 people found this helpful
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5 out of 5

I am now a Kenwood cutomer for life

Written By Eric, Joliet, IL on Thursday, August 31, 2006
Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
 
This is my first Kenwood purchase since I was having sound quality issues with my Pioneer 3700MP and I have always been a Pioneer guy. But I figured it was time for a change. I installed the Kenwood in a 2005 Cavalier with a 6 speaker Polk system. As stated in another review, do not expect to be adjust sound quality parameters while driving, its hard enough to do that while standing still. Other than that small issue, the sound is crystal clear via the huge assortment of sound parameters, the layout of buttons is very good and the large knobs are quite asthetically pleasing. Note (and this took me about 2 hours of banging my head against the wall and a call to Crutchfield tech support) if you have an amplifier, do not connect the remote turn on lead to the antenna power output. There are 2 turn on leads and its not clearly stated in the instructions which one to use. Its the plain blue wire you want to use, not the blue with white tracer. Great unit for the money and the sound is unbeleivable.
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5 out of 5

Fit and matched perfect

Written By Sargon, Middle of California on Monday, June 26, 2006
Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
 
I Installed this in a 2006 Toyota Matrix. I didn't initially like the big knob design, but this was one of the few decks that had red and white lights (to match the rest of my dash). After install I was happy with how well it matched and almost appears OEM. It's been in and I've used it for several months now (3 hours each day to and from work). It plays MP3s and WMAs very well. My only gripe is that the fast forward and reverse are too slow giving an average 10x speed. That sounds fast, but when you're listening to a single 200 or 300mb MP3 file and you need to fastforward 45minutes or 1 hour it takes forever, don't even bother trying to FF 2 or 3 hours into an audio book. This is only a slight upset as the real problem is with the format of a couple mp3 audio books, not the deck. Instead of being broken up into chapters some (very few) are 1 big file.
Someone said changing the EQ manually is too complicated. It's not you just have to read the manual. You push the right knob in and hold it until it beeps, then you change everything you want. To get out (this part took me reading the manual) you have to again hold the button in until it beeps and you're back out standard control.
1 out of 1 people found this helpful
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4 out of 5

Kenwood EZ-500

Written By spartan1, Wash. DC on Sunday, May 07, 2006
 
This unit is blowing my mind!! I am hearing things I have never heard from my car speakers. One major flaw: the control system. Suffice it to say, you are not going to be mastering and tweaking the sound while driving. For instance, if you'd like to change the EQ or bass/mid levels, you're going to have to jump through hoops to get the desired result. Once you're in the EQ settings system it is tricky to get out back into the CD track change function. Overall this exceptional sounding, powerful system is held back from it's true potential by bad interface design. I still love how it sounds!!!
3 out of 3 people found this helpful
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5 out of 5

Best looks and options

Written By Carlos, Bronx, N.Y. on Saturday, April 15, 2006
Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
 
If you need a radio with sub-woofer output, this is the one. Not only does this unit look good in my 05' altima, the functions and options are endless. You can actually control your sub right from the head unit, adjust your sound to the music you like and more. i think this unit is a great buy if your staying in the $250 range.
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5 out of 5

Very good for the price

Written By leclercqmatt, Ashburn, VA on Friday, March 31, 2006
Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
 
I found the radio very easy to install in my Jeep Wrangler. The radio performs excellent, the controls are nice for the iPod and Crutchfield couldn't have given me anything else to make it easier. The instructions were very clear and the connections were very easy to understand. The only thing that I thought the receiver would have is the info from the radio stations on the display, since the info from the iPod scrolls I just assumed the Tuner would do the same. But it is still a very good radio for the money.
2 out of 2 people found this helpful
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5 out of 5

Outstanding

Written By Mike, Lowell, Ar on Monday, March 13, 2006
 
Took a chance on this system and was more than satisfied. Was skeptical at first due to earlier reveiws about it being hard to navigate menus and the knobs being too small. I have to say that I didn't have any of these problems. Navigation was fairly simple and straight forward (will check instructions later to see what I'm missing). This stereo sounds great even with factory speakers but will be installing new speakers within a week. Definately a great system at a reasonable price.
1 out of 1 people found this helpful
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4 out of 5

Easy to use

Written By DAVE, Indianapolis Indiana on Saturday, March 11, 2006
Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
 
The stereos sounds great, I like the large knobs kinda reminds me when I was a teenager 27 years ago, I am still enjoy music more than ever, Third kenwood I have put in my 1997 f150 in the past 10 years, I enjoy the flexibility of this receiver allowing you to adjust BASS treble midrange, very user-friendly
2 out of 2 people found this helpful
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4 out of 5

Kenwood EZ-500

Written By Jacob, Greenville, SC on Thursday, February 16, 2006
Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
 
First of all, i was installing this HU in a 1992 BMW 525i with a premium sound system. This came stock with a six cd changer located in the trunk of the car. I bought the reciever because i needed an outlet for my iPod to play in my car without the horrible quality of an FM transmitter.

As far as installation goes, Crutchfield makes it a breeze with the adapters they send at no cost. (Note: dont purchase the "recommended" adapter that costs $30 unless you are looking to use the factory amp... which you doubtfully will) [Editor's note: some vehicles require special integrations adapters - if in doubt please consult a Crutchfield Sales Advisor!] I really had no problems with installation.

After completing installation its time to get into the details and adjust all the settings to the users personal setup. As far as this went... blah. I swear it would probably be easier to dismantle a bomb than successfully program with head unit without the instructions. This is the fourth reciever ive installed in a car and by far the most difficult to comprehend and command. I like to think i have a decent mastery with audio equipment but this thing really humbled me. There are a lot of specific "hold this button for three seconds to enter this menu to change this option and press this button to exit and configure the setup" kind of things to deal with. Id much rather have a simply layout with a one menu button with access to all the options; however, do not let this deter you from making the purchase, its just a little frustrating at first.
I was pretty pleased at the audio quality... the most important specification of any product i purchase.
Im out of room so ill just finish up by saying im pleased with this product. Its nothing super amazing so ill give it a modest four stars.
5 out of 5 people found this helpful
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5 out of 5

Excellent Product

Written By mark, West Babylon, NY on Friday, September 16, 2005
Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
 
The EZ-500 is an excellent HU. I love the "Old Style" look and the scrolling text is a nice touch. The sound quality is outstanding. It is by far the best car stereo I've ever owned. I first tried the Dual XDRM7700 which I was very unhappy with. Also, I tried the KDC-X789 and the KDC-MP7028 and they were both good as well but the screen images were to much for me. I added the Ipod controller and it just makes the stereo that much better. Also, the crutchfield customer support is excellent. When I returned the Dual they gave me no problems at all. Additionally, the research that they did on the head units is outstanding. I am very happy with the service and the product.
9 out of 9 people found this helpful
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5 out of 5

Better than expected!

Written By John, Dunlap, IL on Thursday, August 04, 2005
 
The Kenwood EZ-500 was purchased to replace the factory head unit in my Mustang because I wanted something to control my my iPod directly. I like the look, especially the two big dials and clean display. I have been very happy with it and will buy a second unit for my other Mustang and am planning on yet another for my Jeep. All of them will have the iPod interface adapter (extra but well worth it). I have had many other aftermarket radios in the past but nothing that I like as well as this one.
3 out of 4 people found this helpful
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5 out of 5

Another Gem from Kenwood

Written By Martin, Effort, PA on Saturday, July 16, 2005
Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
 
The guys at Kenwood did it again. The EZ500 is a top-shelf receiver at a mid-shelf price. Looks great, sounds great, tons of features, super-easy to use and legendary Kenwood quality. I have the EZ500 in my 2002 Ranger and I couldn't be happier.
4 out of 4 people found this helpful
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5 out of 5

Great reciever for an old school car

Written By J Sizzile, A Town, California on Monday, May 23, 2005
 
I have this reciever in my 1983 chrysler new yorker fith avenue edition, and it looks and sounds fantastic. I like the control i have over my sound and subs. I really couldnt tell you how it sounds because i have all of my speakers hooked up to amps, the control is fantastic though. it is a little hard to find the menu and items, but you will get the hang of it. This CD player also looks great in old cars and the red buttons(which can be changed) match my interior.
3 out of 4 people found this helpful
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5 out of 5

A Kenwood Faithfull Satisfied Again!

Written By Bobby, Tampa, FL on Wednesday, March 09, 2005
Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
 
I've always owned a Kenwood head unit and have never been unhappy and it didn't end with this unit either. Very customizeable with it's eq features. A little difficult to navigate through (even for a technology savvy person as myself) but well worth the effort. Awesome!
22 out of 27 people found this helpful
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4 out of 5

4.5 stars; just a couple of minor beefs

Written By Tom, The Woodlands, Texas on Thursday, February 10, 2005
 
This is a great receiver with most all the functions of a true high-end receiver. The sound and power is excellent. Just a couple of minor beefs...

I bought this one for the "retro"-look, and the main reason is that I wanted to be able to work with knobs instead of fiddling around with all buttons.

I essentially got what I wanted; however, the knobs simply do not stick out nearly far enough. A child would literally have a hard time getting a sure grip on these knobs. Knobs on factory radios stick out literally 4 or 5 times farther out. That is disappointing.

I'd like to have a remote control where I can enter a Sirius channel number. This remote only lets me hit presets (along with volume, source, etc.).

I truly don't have any other problems with this receiver. Sometimes it seems difficult to get to the sound-set-function I want (like setting the equalizer) and I have to go to the owner's manual, but aren't they all like this?

This receiver is a great idea. If you are looking for something that will look good in your old muscle car or if you just want to have something with a somewhat old-school look, this has all the modern stuff in it too and is the way to go. JUST MAKE THE KNOBS THICKER!!!
176 out of 223 people found this helpful
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