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Kenwood Excelon KDC-X693

CD receiver (New Stock)

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  • Kenwood Excelon KDC-X693

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  • Kenwood Excelon KDC-X693

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  • Kenwood Excelon KDC-X693

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  • Kenwood Excelon KDC-X693

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  • Kenwood Excelon KDC-X693

    Front - face down

  • Kenwood Excelon KDC-X693

  • Kenwood Excelon KDC-X693

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Item #: 113KDCX693
 

Review Summary

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Our take on the Kenwood Excelon KDC-X693

by Zak Billmeier
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.

Superb sound and a great iPod interface

The Kenwood Excelon KDC-X693 CD receiver makes it easy to use your iPod® in your vehicle. Its direct iPod connection lets you control your playlists and albums with the receiver's controls, along with a multi-line display that shows off your artist and song info. Hook your iPod to the receiver's USB input, and you'll bypass your iPod's digital-to-analog converter, allowing the Kenwood's superior 24-bit DAC to make your files sound their best.

Kenwood Excelon KDC-X693 CD receiver

Find that song fast

Grab the big jog dial and skip through your files in 10% jumps, or search alphabetically — the choice is yours. Plus, your passengers can use the iPod's controls to switch songs if you want to concentrate on the drive. You'll also find a rear auxiliary input for MP3 players and other audio sources. If you're not using an iPod, you can load up a thumb drive with MP3, WMA, and AAC files and connect it to the rear USB input.


Remote control

Sound Excellence DSP

Kenwood's Sound Excellence DSP offers digital sound enhancements designed to give you the best possible sound in your vehicle. iPod EQ features a set of sound adjustments voiced specifically for your iPod, including 22 presets. Highway Sound optimizes your music so it can be better heard over the road noise, while the Supreme + feature improves sound quality by enhancing the frequencies in your digital files that get compressed during conversion.

The Digital E's crossover feature allows you to trim some of the lows out of your front and rear speakers and adjust the low frequencies going to your powered sub, so your equipment plays more efficiently. If you're building a full system, the three sets of preamp outputs send a strong 4-volt signal to your amps for superior sound quality and lower noise levels.


your description goes here

More options

Connect a Kenwood satellite radio to the KDC-X693, and enjoy the mix of news, sports, entertainment, and commercial-free music. Kenwood's HD Radio™ tuner lets you access the superior fidelity and extra programming offered by participating stations in your area.

The receiver's customizable display illumination lets you set the display and button to one of 10 preset colors, or customize the color range to match your dashboard lights.


Safety on the highway

Kenwood's optional Bluetooth™ adapter allows you to make hands-free calls with your compatible phone. When a call comes in, the KDC-X693 mutes the music so you can converse over the car speakers. You'll also get a full-function remote control, so your passengers can pick the next tune or adjust the audio without hassling the driver.

Note: If you're going to use your iPod with this receiver, be sure to check Hands-on Research for specific iPod model compatibility with this receiver or its optional iPod adapter.

See more info on this item

Highlights:

    General features:
    • CD player with built-in MOSFET amplifier (22 watts RMS/50 peak x 4 channels)
    • plays CDs, CD-Rs, and CD-RW discs, including discs loaded with MP3,WMA, and AAC files
    • customizable display and button illumination
    • detachable face
    • remote control
    Audio features:
    • Sound Excellence DSP (3-band parametric equalizer, iPod EQ, Highway Sound, Digital E's crossover)
    • high-pass filters (speaker and preamp outputs), low-pass filter (sub preamp output)
    • speaker settings that let you tailor the sound to the size and type of speakers in your car
    Expandability:
    • iPod direct control via USB input — no adapter necessary, but adding Kenwood's optional connecting cable lets you leave your iPod cable at home
    • compatible with Kenwood's satellite radio, CD changer, Bluetooth adapter and HD Radio™ tuner
    • inputs: rear USB and auxiliary inputs
    • outputs: 6-channel 4-volt preamp outputs (front, rear, subwoofer)
    Other features and specs:

    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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    20-20kHz
    Preamp Outputs
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    6-channel
    Sub Preamp Outputs
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    Yes
    Switchable Rear Preamp Outputs
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    No
    Preamp Voltage
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    4 volts
    Display Color
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    Variable
    Key Button Color
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    Variable
    EQ Bands
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    5
    Wireless Remote
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    Yes
    Steering Wheel Control Compatible
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    Yes
    Parts Warranty
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    2 Years
    Labor Warranty
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    2 Years
    Expandability
    AUX Input
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    Rear and Optional Rear
    USB Input
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    Rear
    Memory Card Slot
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    USB memory
    Bluetooth Compatible
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    Optional
    Satellite Radio Ready
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    Sirius
    HD Radio
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    Optional
    Navigation
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    ---
    iPod Compatibility
    Full size
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    Classic/5Gen
    Nano
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    Nano5/Nano4/Nano3/Nano2/Nano1
    Touch
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    Touch3/Touch2/Touch1
    Mini
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    No
    iPhone
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    Phone/Phone3G/Phone3GS
    Tuner
    FM Sensitivity
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    9.3 dBf
    European Tuning
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    No
    Seek/Scan
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    Seek
    Radio Data System
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    Yes
    Product Research
    What's in the box?

    Download owner's manual

    • AM/FM/CD receiver with 10-amp fuse inserted into the chassis
    • Sleeve
    • Face
    • Trim ring
    • Wiring harness
    • RC-547 Wireless remote
    • 2 "AA" batteries
    • Soft fabric face case
    • 2 Removal tools
    • 4 Panhead ISO-mount screws
    • 4 Flathead ISO-mount screws
    • 2 Face-fixing screws
    • Machine screw
    • Philips-head mounting screw
    • Kenwood Music Editor CD-ROM (ver.2.1.0)
    • Instruction Manual (English)
    • Instruction Manual (Spa/Fre)
    • Warranty Card
    • "Attention" sheet (taped to unit)
    • Music Editor note

    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.

    Overview: The Kenwood KDC-X693 AM/FM CD receiver features a detachable fold-down face, rear-panel auxiliary and USB input, three pairs of 4.0-volt preamp outputs, built-in iPod operation, Satellite and HD Radio controls (with optional tuner) and CD-changer controls, as well as AAC/MP3/WMA playback. The unit also supports Bluetooth via an optional adapter sold separately. In addition, the CD player comes with an IR wireless remote control. The unit's amplifier is rated at 22 watts x 4 channel RMS and 50 watts x 4 channel peak.

    Display Features
    Audio Section
    AM/FM Tuner
    CD Playback
    External Device Controls
    Remote Control
    Software

    Display Features

    Detachable Fold-Down Face: The unit features a fold-down, detachable face to deter theft. There is a red indicator light that will flash on the unit after the face has been removed to warn potential thieves. You can turn this flashing LED on or off. The CD player comes supplied with a soft black fabric, draw string face case to protect the detachable face when you have it off the chassis. You must manually fold the face down before inserting or ejecting a disc.

    Security Code: You can enter a 4-digit security code which must be used when the unit is removed from the vehicle, or the constant power source is disconnected from the unit. When constant power is restored to the unit, the security code must be entered before the unit becomes operational.

    FL Display: The KDC-X693 features a full-dot, multi-line FL display with spectrum analyzer and adjustable contrast. The KDC-X693 offers the following display and button illumination settings.

    • Type Select: Allows you to choose between four display types.
      • Type A displays 4 to 5 lines of text (you can choose from 3 different layouts)
      • Type B displays a line of text and motion display
      • Type C display a line of text and the spectrum analyzer (you can choose between two spectrum analyzer patterns)
      • Type D display the clock
    • Text Select: Select which text information displays on the headunit. You can choose up to 5 lines of text between 7 selections: Station Name, Frequency, Album Artist, Title, Genre, Date, or Blank.
    • Text/Title Scroll: The KDC-X693 will display CD text, Audio file text and Satellite and HD radio text. You can turn the scrolling feature "on" to scroll longer titles across the screen.
    • Illumination Color: Allows you to set the the display and button illumination color to one of 10 color presets; or customize a red, green, or blue color range. You can also set the right and left side button illumination of the headunit to separate colors.
    • Illumination Effect: Sets whether the headunit's button illumination color is changed in conjunction with the button operation.
    • Illumination Music Sync: Sets whether the headunit's button illumination color is changed in conjunction with the sound volume.
    • Dimmer: The dimmer function will dim this unit's display automatically when the vehicle light switch is turned On when you connect orange/white Illumination wire of this player.

    Display Illumination/Clock Display: When the unit is in Standby mode, the face/button illumination is "keyed." In addition, while the unit is in Standby mode, you can turn the clock display on or off. When the Clock Display is turned on and the unit is in Standby mode, the Clock Display is also "keyed." Pressing and holding the source button turns the unit off completely.

    Dual Rotary Knobs: The KDC-X693 features two rotary control dials (one 3-way and one 7-way) to make playback and adjustment of your music as simple as possible.

    Audio Section

    24 Bit D/A Converter: The Kenwood KDC-X693 utilizes a 24-bit digital to analog converter for superior CD sound quality.

    Dual Zone: The Dual Zone mode allows you to output the Main source and the Auxiliary input separately for the front and rear channels. You can select whether the auxiliary input will play in the front or the rear.

    3-Sets of 4.0V Preamp Outputs: The KDC-X693 features front, rear and subwoofer 4.0V preamp outputs. The front and rear speaker preamp outputs are balance and fade adjustable. The subwoofer preamp output is non-fading. The front, rear and subwoofer preamp outputs are fixed to the rear chassis of the headunit.

    Subwoofer Level: You can independently control the subwoofer preamp output level from the CD receiver. You select levels between -15 to +15.

    Sound Excellence DSP: In order to optimize the sound quality, you can use the Sound Excellence DSP to set the type of vehicle and speaker sizes, locations, distances and x-over points. The DSP settings include the following:

    • Cabin Setting: Choose from Compact, Full Size Car, Station Wagon, Mini Van , SUV, Mini Van Long, or Off
    • Speaker Setting:
      • Front Location: Choose either Door, On Dash, or Under Dash
      • Front Size: Choose from 6-1/2", 6-3/4", 7", 4"x6", 5"x7", 6"x8", 6"x9", 7"x10", OEM, 4", or 5"
      • Tweeter Size: Select either None or Use
      • Rear Location: Choose between Door, Rear Deck, 2nd Row or 3rd Row
      • Rear Size: Choose from 6-1/2", 6-3/4", 7", 4"x6", 5"x7", 6"x8", 6"x9", 7"x10", OEM, 4", or 5"
      • Subwoofer Size: Select from 10", 12", 15", None, 6-1/2" or 8"
    • Digital Time Alignment (DTA): Choose from 0.00 to 14.44 feet for the Front pair of speakers, Rear pair of speakers and Subwoofer distances in reference to the distance between your listening positioning and the locations of the particular speakers.
    • X'Over:
      • Front High Pass Filter: Select between 30, 40, 50, 60, 70, 80,90, 100, 120, 150, 180, 220, or 250Hz at a slope of -12, -18, or -24 dB per octave; you can also select full-range
      • Rear High Pass Filter: Select between 30, 40, 50, 60, 70, 80, 90, 100, 120, 150, 180, 220, or 250Hz at a slope of -12, -18, or -24 dB per octave; you can also select full-range
      • Subwoofer Low Pass Filter: Select between 30, 40, 50, 60, 70, 80, 90, 100, 120, 150, 180, 220, or 250 Hz at a slope of -12, -18, or -24 dB per octave; you can also select full-range
      • Subwoofer Phase: Choose either Normal or Reverse

    Equalizer Control: Equalizer Control allows you to use one of the System Q presets, or set your own custom settings for the front and back speakers independently, using the 5-band Equalizer. The EQ adjustments are as follows:

    • Preset EQ: You can select from Natural, Rock, Pops, Easy, Top 40, Jazz, Game, iPod, or User.
    • 5-Band EQ: You can adjust the following 5-Band EQ (62.5Hz, 250Hz, 1kHz, 4kHz, 16kHz) settings.
      • Band Levels: Independent front and rear EQ level of -9dB to +9dB.
      • Bass Effect: Enhances the bass response of Band 1.

    Position Control: For a better sound-stage you can select your optimal listening position. You can choose from All, Front Left,  Front Right or Front. You can also select to manually fine tune the sound stage by selecting the distance for each individual speaker in the vehicle compared to your listening position. You can select between 0.00 to 5.58 feet for the Left Front Speaker, Right Front Speaker, Left Rear Speaker, Right Rear Speaker, Left Subwoofer and/or Right Subwoofer.

    Bass Boost: The Kenwood KDC-X693 features a two level Bass Boost to increase bass levels.

    Highway Sound: This features compensates the low volume or bass sound being lost by road noises to make vocals sound clearer. You can set the Highway Sound function to 1, 2, 3, or off.

    Volume Offset: 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.

    Source Tone Memory: This feature allows you to store System Q bass, middle and treble tone settings for each source (CD, Tuner, Aux, and USB).

    Tel Mute: The KDC-X693 features a cell-phone mute wire (brown) in its harness that when hooked up to your car's phone system mute wire will automatically mute the receiver's audio signal when a call comes in.

    AM/FM Tuner

    CR-2 Advanced Tuner: This unit uses Kenwood's CR-2 Advanced tuner for clear radio reception. 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.

    Auto Memory Tuning: Not only does the CD receiver's tuner allow you manually enter your desired presets you can choose to have the unit automatically put stations with good reception in the memory banks automatically; this is a handy feature when traveling. The tuner features 3 FM banks (1, 2, 3) and 1 AM bank. You can store 6 presets for each AM/FM bank giving you a total of 18 FM presets and 6 AM presets.

    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 circuit can be turned on or off.

    Radio Data System (RDS): The unit's tuner features RDS (Radio Data System). RDS is a service used by some radio stations to transmit data outside of normal radio broadcast signals. When an RDS station is received, you can immediately find out what kind of data is being transmitted by looking at the program service name. RDS features an emergency transmission function that interrupts regular programming to broadcast an emergency announcement (such as a tornado or severe storm). There is also a switchable Traffic Information function, which will automatically tune a traffic bulletin when it is broadcast, even when you are not listening to the radio.

    Favorite Memory Control: The headunit's Favorite Control feature allows you to save six "Favorites" for easy access. You can select a "Favorite" playlist from your connected iPod, your favorite radio station from the unit's AM/FM tuner or connected Satellite Radio/HD tuner (both sold separately), or a favorite telephone number from your mobile-phone using the optional Bluetooth hands-free kit (sold separately). This allows you to have instant access your favorite Radio station, telephone number, or iPod playlist from one list on the headunit's display. You can also name each Favorite for even easier access.

    CD Playback

    AAC/MP3/WMA Playback: The KDC-X693 can play AAC (8-320 kbps), MP3 (8-320 kbps) and WMA (48-192 kbps) files recorded on CD-ROM, CD-R, and CD-RW discs in ISO9660 Level 1/Level 2, Joliet, Romeo, and Long file name formats. Each disc should have a maximum of 8 directory levels, 50 folders, and 255 files per folder with a maximum of 512 files and folders. During MP3/WMA playback, the unit displays any recorded ID3 Tag (Ver.1) information. The headunit will display up to 30 characters.

    Supreme+ Setting: When MP3, WMA or AAC files encoded at a low bit rate (less than 96 kbps, 44.1k, 48kHz) are played, the Supreme+ Setting function restores their high frequencies so the sound quality is closer to files encoded at a high bit rate. The processing is optimized for the compression format and the bit rate used. When the Supreme+ Setting is Off, the unit plays the original sound stored in the audio file.

    Music Search: The Kenwood AM/FM CD receiver features a Music Search feature which allows you to scroll through and select your MP3/WMA music folders and files, as well as scroll through your audio CD's music tracks using the headunit's rotary knob.

    CD Force: When there is a problem with playing a CD with a special format, this setting plays the CD by force. Some CDs still may not play in the CD Force mode.

    Last Position Memory: If the unit is shut off or switched to the tuner mode while a CD is playing, the next time CD is selected as the source, playback will resume from the point where it left off.

    Off Eject: The KDC-X693 allows you to eject your disc for 10 minutes after switching off the vehicles engine.

    External Device Connection

    USB Port: The Kenwood KDC-X693 features a rear-panel 2.0 USB type-A port on a 38" pigtail. The USB port enables connection and control of a portable USB mass-storage class device with AAC (8-320 kbps), MP3 (8-320 kbps), and WMA (48-192 kbps) music files. The USB port is compatible with all USB mass storage class devices that support the FAT16 or FAT32 file system. Your USB device should only have a maximum of 8 directory levels, 255 folders, and 255 files per folder with a maximum of 65,025 files and folders. When your USB device is connected to this unit, it can be charged up provided that the KDC-X693 is powered on.

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

    iPod High-Speed Connection: The KDC-X693's rear-panel USB port also acts as an iPod high-speed direct connection when used with the optional Kenwood USB Direct Connection Cable (113iP101, sold separately) or the USB/iPod cable that comes with your iPod. Using either cable allows you to connect, control, and charge select iPod models with the KDC-X693. The USB connection allows your iPod's large music libraries to be loaded instantly to the headunit and sound quality to be maximized through the headunit's 24-bit D/A converter, allowing for a Signal to Noise ratio up to105dB.When your iPod is connected to the KDC-X693, you can choose to operate your iPod via the Kenwood headunit's controls or your iPod's click-wheel/touch-screen.  If you select to control your iPod from the KDC-X693, the Kenwood headunit will allow you to navigate your iPod's music by Playlist, Artists, Album, Genre, Composer, Song, or Podcast (your iPod's click-wheel/touch-screen will be locked in this mode). You can search these categories alphabetically or using a percentage search (0.5%, 1%, 5%, 10%). You can also choose to listen to all songs stored on your iPod at random. The KDC-X693 will also display your iPod's music file information when in this mode. If you choose to operate your connected iPod via its click-wheel/touch-screen controls, the KDC-X693 will not display your iPod's music information (the headunit will instead display "iPodMODE") and the Kenwood headunit's controls will no longer operate your iPod. The Kenwood KDC-X693 is "Made for iPod/iPhone" compatible and supports the following iPod/iPhone model features (as of Nov. 2009):

    iPod/iPhone Model Generation Media Type  Control Display Charge
    Audio Video Unit iPod Song/Artist Track
    dock-connector 3rd N N N N N N N
    click-wheel/color-display 4th N N N N N N N
    mini 1st N N N N N N N
    2nd N N N N N N N
     video 5th Y N Y N Y Y Y
     classic 80GB Y N Y Y Y Y Y
    120GB Y N Y Y Y Y Y
    160GB Y N Y Y Y Y Y
     nano 1st Y N Y N Y Y Y
    2nd Y N Y Y Y Y Y
    3rd Y N Y Y Y Y Y
    4th Y N Y Y Y Y Y
    5th Y N Y Y Y Y Y
    touch 1st Y N Y Y Y Y Y
    2nd Y N Y Y Y Y Y
    3rd Y N Y Y Y Y Y
    iPhone 2G Y N Y Y Y Y Y
    3G Y N Y Y Y Y Y
    3GS Y N Y Y Y Y Y

    Note: Not compatible with OS 4.0. Apple firmware updates may change functionality results. You may need to reset your iPod if you download a newer software version.

    Satellite Radio Ready: There are several options for connecting an optional XM or SIRIUS Satellite Radio receiver to this receiver:

    • SIRIUS Satellite Radio: To receive SIRIUS Satellite Radio, you can connect the optional SIRIUS Universal Vehicle Tuner  and the optional Kenwood Sirius Satellite Radio Interface (package # 700SIRKENW, sold separately); or you can connect the optional Kenwood Sirius Satellite Radio Interface and the SiriusConnect vehicle docking kit (package # 700SIRPKEN, sold separately), along with your compatible SIRIUS Dock & Play receiver.
    • Auxiliary Input: A portable satellite radio receiver, such as the XM Delphi SkyFi3 or SIRIUS Sportster, can also be connected to the head unit via the auxiliary input.

      Note: A subscription is also required to receive satellite radio programming from SIRIUS or XM.

    HD Radio Ready: With an optional Kenwood HD Radio tuner (113KTCHR20 or 113HR300, sold separately), 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.

    Bluetooth Ready: The unit is also Bluetooth compatible using the optional Kenwood KCA-BT200 Bluetooth adapter (113BT200, sold separately). Using this adapter you can make and answer phone calls from the Kenwood headunit. You can even download your Phonebook information from your compatible mobile phone into the headunit. You are able to register up to five compatible Bluetooth cell phones when using the KCA-BT200 adapter. Visit Kenwood.com for a complete list of compatible Bluetooth enabled phones.

    Changer Controls: 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. In addition to basic disc navigation features, this unit has the following changer controls: direct disc access (using the remote), direct track access (using the remote), track intro scan, track repeat, disc repeat, disc random, and magazine disc random. When connected to a CD Text capable CD 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.

    AUX Input: The KDC-X693 is equipped with a rear-panel 3.5mm minijack auxiliary input for connecting external portable audio devices such as an MP3 player. The KDC-X693 allows you to select the source type displayed when using the auxiliary input. You can choose from AUX, DVD, Portable, Game, Video or TV.

    Rear Auxiliary Input "Ready": The unit already features a rear panel auxiliary input, but if you need a second auxiliary input, one can be added to the rear of the unit. When used with an optional adapter, this unit can accept a rear input from an auxiliary source. When the CA-C1AUX adapter (113CAC1AX, sold separately) is used, you cannot connect a CD changer to the head unit because the adapter plugs into the DIN changer control connection on the head unit. When the KCA-S220A 2-changer switch (113KCAS220, sold separately) is used, you can connect a CD changer and an auxiliary audio source at the same time. When an auxiliary audio source is connected, you can choose from one of six names for the source: AUX, DVD, Portable, Game, Video or TV.

    Remote Control

    IR Remote Control: The KDC-X693 comes with the RC-547 IR wireless remote control with a full numeric keypad. The remote will control Audio, CD, Tuner, Satellite Radio, and Dual Zone functions. The remote control allows direct access of your music tracks, direct access to discs loaded in a connected CD-changer (sold separately) and direct access to AM/FM radio stations. It is powered by 2 "AA" batteries (supplied).

    Attenuator: The CD receiver features an Attenuator button on the supplied remote control that turns the volume down very quickly with one touch of the button.

    Steering Wheel Remote Compatibility: The KDC-X693 has a "steering remote control" lead on the back panel. When used with the optional SWI-JACK interface (127SWIJACK, sold separately), you can retain the use of your steering wheel and/or rear seat radio controls when replacing the factory head unit in select vehicles. The SWI-JACK is compatible with over 95% of the vehicles made from 1986 to the present. Compatible vehicles include many Acura, Audi, BMW, Buick, Cadillac, Chevrolet, Chrysler, Dodge, Ford, GMC, Honda, Hummer, Infiniti, Isuzu, Jaguar, Jeep, Kia, Land Rover, Lexus, Lincoln, Mazda, Mercury, Mini, Mitsubishi, Nissan, Oldsmobile, Plymouth, Pontiac, Saab, Saturn, Suzuki, Toyota, and Volkswagen vehicles and Harley Davidson motorcycles. Please consult "What Fits My Car" to see if your vehicle is compatible.

    Software

    Supplied Software: The KDC-X693 comes supplied with the Kenwood Music Editor Version 2.1.0 CD-ROM. Kenwood Music Editor is a desktop software that helps organize, manage and transfer AAC, MP3, and WMA music files to your USB devices from your PC.

    System Requirements:

    • Operating System:
      • Microsoft Windows XP Professional/Home Edition SP2 or later (32-bit version)
      • Microsoft Windows Vista (32-bit version)
    • Other Programs:
      • Microsoft .Net Framework 2.0
      • QuickTime 7 or later (when using AAC file)
      • Windows Media Player 10/11
    • Hardware:
      • Hard disk with at least 100MB free space
      • CD-ROM drive (CD-R/RW drive when writing to CD-R/RW)
      • USB interface (2.0/1.1)
     
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    Kenwood Excelon KDC-X693 Reviews

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    5 out of 5

    Love it

    Written By Rafael, Tampa, FL on Monday, March 22, 2010
     
    great radio. I have the 693 (no bluetooth) and the features are great. took
    about an hour to figure out the features and how to navigate the iPod but
    that was it. Very simple to navigate through iPod, local stations, CD player
    and Auxilary. I hook the Aux up to my blackberry for Pandora so I now have
    another easy option for more music. The colors are amazing as you can
    match it up with your current lighting. Not as difficult as everyone is making it
    out to be. One side volume, one side menu. More menu features by holding
    the knob in. You can also control the iPod from the iPod if you feel that's
    easier. I've had it for 6-7 months now and I highly reccomend it even though
    it's discontinued.
    2 out of 3 people found this helpful
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    3 out of 5

    Annoying Software

    Written By Gary, Greater Boston, MA on Tuesday, February 02, 2010
    Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
     
    Great sound, good value, very good ipod integration, easy to install in my Japanese car.

    General nuisance: display software plays an animation after every knob turn or function change, meaning the display is useless for that time. Want to change the radio station and confirm it while stopped at a red light? Unlikely - the screen will still be doing its show when the light turns.

    The more specific problem is with using a USB drive full of files. This worked pretty well on my older, lower-end KDC-MP532U which got flakey after 4 years. The old deck could shuffle the whole USB, which I would expect is the most common way to use a USB drive. But this new deck can't do that, unless maybe the Kenwood software is used to load the USB drive. I really miss that old feature, especially because the Kenwood software is very slow and ill documented. (The software might be great if you want its fancy features, but I just want 1-3 playlists which are already encoded in the USB directory structure.)

    Please, Kenwood - have a mode to simplify the display, and improve the USB reading software. Simple support of random USB play per folder - any folder, not just the lowest level - and I'd give this 5 stars.
    1 out of 4 people found this helpful
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    2 out of 5

    Kenwood Excelon KDC-X693

    Written By Andreas, Farmington, NM on Thursday, January 21, 2010
     
    Seriously folks, while there are some positives about this unit, it is hands- down the most user unfriendly car stereo I've ever owned....the only thing that is easy is the volume up or down, everything else requires taking your eyes off the road and fiddling with at least one, sometimes two or more menus to achieve. I have been around these things for a very long time, and while I applaud Kenwood's commitment to great sound there has got to be a friendlier way to get there.

    On the positive side, the lighting of the unit is excellent and you will be able to set it to the exact hue of the other lights on your instrument panel. The appearance is sharp, whilst perhaps a bit retro, but I liked that. Many capabilities in terms of setting the sound for the particular speakers you have allow you to "fine tune" for a very nice match including a set of menus for crossover frequencies to really dial in.

    But, want to set a preset for an FM station you're listening to? Good luck, as it takes menus to do even that! Want to set your treble or bass? Not so fast, more menus, can't just push the function knob.....aaaargh!

    Had it 3 weeks and decided to return it. As always, the best thing about this part of the transaction was Crutchfield's stellar handling of the situation. It's near 25 years of doing business with them and never been disappointed. How's that for a recommendation? Thanks, and we'll see you again!
    3 out of 4 people found this helpful
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    4 out of 5

    Great sound, presets no good

    Written By Dodge Ram 42, Ashburn, VA on Tuesday, January 19, 2010
     
    This unit sounds great. It awoke the infinity speakers I have in the truck. The amount of control you have over the sound is amazing. The presets are terrible. To make things more confusing, there are presets and then there are favorites. The favorites can be accessed by the remote control which makes the unit tolerable for me. I use the remote to switch channels, change volume, and to change from tuner, to IPOD, to standby. There is so much more potential for this remote. Off switch, there isn't one! You have to toggle the unit from turner to standby to stop the music. IPOD control: The head unit allows you to skip to the next song or back to the previous one. It's relatively basic, but it works well. I like the two knob layout on the head unit. Unfortunately the right hand knob doesn't change the frequency like a conventional OEM unit. It has a bunch of other controls that are not intuitive. I bought this unit after a comprehensive review of all the other radios available. When it came down to it, there wasn't much else out there comparable in features, expandability, price, and with a rear USB connection. One of the Alpine units came in a close second in my analysis, but they wanted 200 bucks for a HD turner which was a deal breaker. Kenwood charges $100. So even with all the complaints above, I'm keeping my Kenwood. It's the best of the bunch.
    2 out of 3 people found this helpful
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    1 out of 5

    Terrible display

    Written By Harold, Columbus, OH on Sunday, January 17, 2010
    Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
     
    This receiver has the absolute worst display of any radio that I have seen. In the day time it's unreadable. There is nothing intuitive on this unit. You have to have the manual with you to figure how to do anything. The display is so bad it over shadows the great features of this unit. This is easy to rate a do not buy.
    1 out of 3 people found this helpful
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    5 out of 5

    eXcellent

    Written By Wil, Jacksonville, FL on Saturday, January 16, 2010
    Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
     
    I love this head unit. So many features that you don't expect from receivers in this price range. What I really like are the sound tuning options. The built in crossover is very flexible. With a high pass filter for Front and Rear channels, a low pass filter for the Sub, and a wide range of cutoff frequencies and slopes (6,12,18, and 24 dB/Oct) to choose from, you can get all the speakers in your system to blend seamlessly and perform at their best. The 5 band EQ could be a little more robust, but it does help to compensate for the common peaks and dips in frequency response. What I found most useful and effective is the DTA or digital time alignment feature. Unlike home theater setups, where we can sit in the "sweet spot," the speakers in our cars are at different distances from us. Their sound waves arrive at our ears at different times. With digital time alignment you can apply the right amount of delay to your speakers to optimize the sound in your listening area.

    With added options and features like USB, iPod connectivity, different illumination colors, etc.. the KDC-X693 makes for an awesome head unit.

    In response to the review complaining about the display - if you go to Menu in Standby mode, you'll see "DISP N/P" in the list. This lets you choose a positive or negative display. There you can also adjust the contrast from 1 to 10.
    3 out of 4 people found this helpful
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    3 out of 5

    Good not great

    Written By slobzs, Detroit, MI on Saturday, January 09, 2010
    Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
     
    I gave this deck only 3 stars because of mainly the display and the usability of the menu. The display is hard to see during daylight hours, the darker coloring of the background overpowers the lighter wording. The sunlight makes the wording fade to nothing. If it was reversed(light background, darker wording) I believe it wouldn't be as bad. When you can see the wording, i.e night, as the words scroll they are blurred. I have to wait until it stops moving to read. With no easy way to the preset EQ selections its hard for me to find a happy medium with all the different types of music I listen to. I had a Sony Explode and with one button I was able to change even while driving. Now I have to wait til I get to a red light.

    Other than that a good, clear sounding radio. It has enough bells and whistles once you navigate through the menus to make me happy.
    2 out of 3 people found this helpful
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    5 out of 5

    WOW!

    Written By Mr. Wood, Crescent, OK on Monday, December 28, 2009
     
    By far the best stereo i have ever had! The installation was quick and easy, it has all the features you would need, and sounds amazing! I installed it in my '96 Mustang Cobra and it "woke up" the stock mach 460 sound, when installing it i lost the bass in my car because i bypassed my factory amps but it still sounds great, next comes some junk in the trunk to get back that bass!
    1 out of 2 people found this helpful
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    5 out of 5

    Do your homework

    Written By Scott, Detroit on Thursday, December 17, 2009
    Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
     
    First of all, the kenwood unit looks great, was super easy to install and took me a few minutes to get the menu down, and at first I thought that the sound was off (heavy bass) but I was able to adjust the settings and get a real nice clean sound.

    For those that read these reviews, the screen is glossy, the colors are vibrant and not only are there 10-12 preset colors, the system allows for complete custom color of both the screen, and the accents (with a neat little option to alternate colors per side).

    Sound is awesome. USB drive connectivity is great, sound shaping is fantastic and this unit delivers power.

    Pros: Everything, colors, sound, quality, custom settings for cabin and speaker locations, size, etc. You will not be disappointed.

    Cons: The menus will frustrate you if you do not use the manual or take your time. There are no preset buttons, you have to use the menus to set them and can get frustrating if you dont take your time or read the manual.

    Bottom Line: I bought this deck with a pair of kenwood 6x8's (and got a $50 discount). There is no better deal on this site. period. If you buy it, read the manual and take the time to get to understand the menus.
    2 out of 3 people found this helpful
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    3 out of 5

    Sounds GREAT, but....

    Written By John, Pittsburgh, PA on Wednesday, December 02, 2009
    Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
     
    I've had this for about two weeks now.

    I have to agree with everybody who said it sounds great, so I won't spend any time on that. My only issue with this unit is the favorite channel pre- sets. If you're in FM radio for instance, if you want to change to another of your pre-sets, you have to hit a button, scroll down with the right knob to the pre-set you want (you have to remember what station is on what pre-set because the unit won't tell you), then try to hit the knob dead center to select it. It's even more complicated if you want to switch from say CD to Sirius. You have to hit one button to get to the selection screen, scroll the right knob to Sirius, then hit it dead center to select it. Once in Sirius, you have to follow the pre-set directions to get to the channel you want.

    All of this while driving. Yeah, right. My old factory radio had six buttons for pre-sets. Depending on what mode you were in (AM, FM, FM2, or Sirius) you had six stations to pre-set. All you had to do was hit one button to switch from FM to Sirius, and another button for your pre-set. Simple. And it kept my eyes on the road, where they belong.

    If you aren't the type of person who radio surfs like I do, you'll love this unit. The ability to taylor the sound to your vehicle is awsome, the light display is great, and the sound is unbelievable. But, if you like to move around more than a few times on a trip, this unit will begin to annoy you - like it has with me.
    1 out of 2 people found this helpful
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    5 out of 5

    Kenwood Excelon KDC-X693

    Written By Paula, Fall River, MA on Saturday, November 28, 2009
    Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
     
    This Kenwood receiver is incredible...I love everything about it...I hooked up my satellite radio through the rear aux input and I can't believe how great it sounds...ipod interface is also amazing...it's true that the menu's take a bit of navigating to fully understand them, but I am very satisfied with my purchase overall..It's great to be able to talk directly to the original person who placed my order...Jenny has been so helpful.. When I decide to upgrade my speakers, I will be sure to be in touch with her again...If anyone is looking for an amazing upgrade, please consider this Kenwood receiver!!
    1 out of 3 people found this helpful
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    5 out of 5

    Great HU for the Price

    Written By Darren, Clayton, NC on Wednesday, November 25, 2009
    Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
     
    You cannot beat the quality of this HU compared to its price. With a 24 Bit DAC, superb sound, and great looks...this is a great receiver. True the screen is a little hard to read in bright sunlight, but in my opinion that is a minor flaw in an otherwise great unit. The menu and navigation through them takes a little bit of time to get used to, but if you just read the manual you will be fine. Great product, you will not be disappointed.
    1 out of 2 people found this helpful
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    3 out of 5

    Great Radio

    Written By Shane, Northern NJ on Sunday, November 22, 2009
    Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
     
    This unit is great. It has alot of customization to it and it sounds great! I can't stand the detachable face though. Why did they change this!? You have to align a pin on the right side and then try and get it to slide on to a pin on the left side and then flip it up. This is difficult enough in the day light forget about it in the dark. I have to turn on the interior lights to fumble with this. They should have stayed wit the old slide to the right on the head unit and push it straight back. Other than the faceplate issue, it is a great radio.
    1 out of 2 people found this helpful
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    2 out of 5

    Very disappointed after 2 days.........

    Written By Rene, FL on Friday, November 20, 2009
     
    Pros: nice looking unit, easy install, plenty of built in power.

    Cons: display is so glossy that you cannot see it during the daytime even after changing contrast and colors, adjustment of EQ & DSP did not make a noticeable difference with ipod, cd's or tuner. the factory head unit sounded better. the cd that I put in started skipping big time. Note: cd was new and only in there for 5 days without being removed. time kept changing in 1 hour increments back and forth on its own. too much work to find controls needed. some only work under standby mode.

    what good is having a flashy nice looking unit, when it does not do its job. maybe I just got a bad unit, or it was damaged internally during shipping. who knows. I ordered the Alpine 9887 to replace the kenwood 693 which was my first choice, but I was just trying to save a few $$

    I look foward to writing a great review on the Alpine 9887.

    Good thing out of all of this, that the folks at Crutchfield just took care of me right away and shipped out my new replacement the same evening I called. It should be here sometime today, so I plan to install it tomorrow :o)

    Thanks for all your help Crutchfield!!!
    1 out of 3 people found this helpful
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    5 out of 5

    Kenwood and Crutchfield

    Written By Dan, Knoxville, TN on Wednesday, November 18, 2009
    Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
     
    Bought this HU last week and received it with free shipping in 2 days. Installed it in an 02 WRX and it made a huge difference even with stock speakers. Some reviews have said that it is hard to navigate through the menus, but it really is fairly simple. Hit function and then just select what you want to change and that's it. The EQ for cds is great and made a difference but the 22 preset EQ for my IPhone is even better. The wattage difference between stock and this HU has allowed me to turn up the volume so much more without distortion. This HU is great. Secondly, I would have to say I am very impressed with Crutchfield and will definitely be ordering all of my future purchases through them. The shipping was very fast, on time, and the detail in product info and emails is greatly appreciated. I even got a hand written thank you letter from them for my purchase. When have you ever gotten that from a leading company. Between Kenwood and Crutchfield, you can't lose.
    2 out of 3 people found this helpful
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    5 out of 5

    Awesome

    Written By Rodge, Cumberland, MD on Wednesday, November 18, 2009
    Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
     
    I recently got this model for an 89 Jeep Wrangler. What an awesome Stereo! I'm digging the different color schemes, the usb connection in the back. This thing has RDS and will even display song title and artist info from a burned cd!! Yep, I made a generic cd a few weeks back, plugged it in the cd drive and every song came up with the info, very nice. I have already added the HD equipment and will be adding the satellite radio equipment soon. If all that wasn't enough, I can use the bluetooth functionality to connect my phone and download my phonebook. When I get a call and I'm rockin out, the radio will mute and display who is calling!
    2 out of 3 people found this helpful
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    5 out of 5

    Great Head unit

    Written By beatbox2010, small town, mo on Tuesday, November 17, 2009
     
    this head unit is awesome, took a little bit to get used to but thats with any big change in stereos. the control knob could be a little bit easier to use but its not bad. the choices in the colors is awesome i get tired of looking at the same thing. head unit is definitely worth the price. from now on im sticking with kenwood.
    1 out of 2 people found this helpful
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    5 out of 5

    Kenwood Excelon KDC-X693

    Written By Jeep Driver, Miami, FL on Monday, November 16, 2009
    Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
     
    This is a great little receiver. The controls are relatively easy to use once you get used to them, and even though the unit sounds great out of the box, there are also tonnes of options to help tailor the sound to suit your system.

    During the day the display is definately readable, and only in extreme sunlight is it hard to see - although I think that's the case with jsut about any LCD-type display. At night, the whole unit looks great.

    The USB input and cable is a really convenient option, and I have the cable running behind my dash and into the glove compartment, so that I can easily hook up an iPod or GPS straight into the USB cable without having cables all over the place. Nice.

    The only thing that would be an improvement would be to have radio station presets available with one touch, but I guess that would detract from the looks of the faceplate, so it's not a bad trade-off.

    The dials all feel relatively solid, and the is a bag for the faceplate that comes in handy whenever the faceplate is detatched from the unit.

    Overall, a great stereo and more than most people would ever be likely to use ! Recommended !


    1 out of 3 people found this helpful
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    4 out of 5

    Kenwood Excelon KDC-X693

    Written By guru, Atlanta, GA on Saturday, October 24, 2009
     
    Overall this is a great radio with excellent options and sound quality. I have component Kenwood speakers that sound great with this unit with out the use of an amp.
    2 out of 3 people found this helpful
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    5 out of 5

    Nice head unit, sounds great

    Written By rob, Tri-cities WA on Wednesday, October 21, 2009
    Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
     
    I only had this head for a day and I'm impressed..there's a lot of options to customize the sound to suit your vehicle. The choice of a wide range of colors is a nice feature to match anyone's dash. If you can set the time on a clock, you can learn how to set this head up. It just takes 5 min to get a feel of how the menus work and a little browsing through the manual. One thing i did notice was you can only change a few settings in standby mode. Also in order to turn of demo mode, you need to hold down the left knob and it will switch to off. I know how some people can get frustrated by these kind of things. I installed this in an 87 s-10 blazer and ordering through Crutchfield made it a breeze to install. I upgraded from a Kenwood KDC-138, kept the same socket, and simply plugged it into the new head. It saved me a lot of time not having to wire everything again. I'm shopping for an alarm system for my car now because this head looks that expensive. The rear aux and usb is nice, giving you the option of routing the cables wherever you want in the dash. And for the people who say they can't see the screen, you can change the contrast and invert the color of the display from black background/black text.
    2 out of 3 people found this helpful
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    5 out of 5

    Very Nice Unit

    Written By Bruce, Pennsylvania on Tuesday, October 06, 2009
     
    Amazing unit, the display is great especially with the variable colors, sounds
    great, love the USB port, easy to use and setup.
    Only downside I have with the unit is I wish it had separate buttons for station
    presets, but this is a minor issue.
    Can't go wrong with this unit for the price.
    2 out of 3 people found this helpful
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    4 out of 5

    2006 Maxima

    Written By Anonymous, birmingham, AL on Friday, October 02, 2009
    Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
     
    I have only had it for a month so still getting used to it. My old Kenwood
    Excelon - X979 with the 3d masking (gears wore out so it was aggrivating
    about opening and closing). I don't really miss the 3d masking, but I do feel
    like the built in crossovers for the speakers is much better than this model.
    The only difference between the X693 and X993 is the bluetooth
    microphone accessory, so not really a model difference. I wish that my MP3
    was more compatible with this unit so I could take advantage of the USB
    port. Its a great radio, just used to a little better. I always have been a
    Kenwood fan and this one has some really great features and sounds
    great, just feel like I'm missing something.
    1 out of 2 people found this helpful
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    4 out of 5

    in a sc400 nakamichi

    Written By Anonymous, Dallas, tx on Friday, September 18, 2009
    Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
     
    Great headunit, excellent Ipod integration, a great alternative to the stock headunit. Buttons are a little small for important functions such as turning on, functions, etc. Overall a great value!
    I didn't give it a 5 cos the sound wasn't as good as stock when the stock subwoofer isn't connected (it won't power it on, gotta figure that one out).
    1 out of 2 people found this helpful
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    4 out of 5

    Great Deck

    Written By xekrubx, Nashua NH on Wednesday, September 09, 2009
     
    I would like to give this 5 stars but that would mean 100% perfect. Its close but not perfect.

    I really like the speaker size settings and eq controls. I was going to use a 4 channel amp for my interior speakers but because they sound great with this deck ive decided to put it off until i get something that requires more power. Im only using 4" MB Quartz speakers in my dash and 6.5" alpine type s components in the rear. All sound extremely clear and LOUD. I have 2 12" Kenwood Excelon db+ subs and a 2000 watt American Legacy amp. The sub settings and easy access to the line out level are great. Sounds much better than my 5+ year old sony.

    Others have complained about sunlight making the screen hard to see but ive had it shine directly on it and i can see it just fine if not better.
    I was able to perfectly match the side colors to the orange color of my dash lights. The display color i made very white so maybe thats why its super easy to read.
    I do have to say its a little slow when switching tracks on an mp3 cd.
    I would like maybe some more animated displays. The ones it has are super lame so i just keep it on the first setting that shows all the info. And the animations between the menus are long and unnecessary.

    1 out of 3 people found this helpful
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    5 out of 5

    Kenwood Excelon KDC-X693

    Written By Jones, Alexandria, LA on Saturday, September 05, 2009
    Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
     
    Awesome radio, if you are an audio fanatic, this is the radio for you. If you love to tweak your mobile audio, you cannot beat this head unit. And yes I am sure you could really go all out and spend 1500 or more for a radio that spec wise is far superior, but are you really going to hear the difference? For the price and performance, you cannot go wrong. I am using this radio to power a pair of 6 1/2s and 4x6s and they sound great. Later to add a pair of tweeters and JL Audio subs.
    1 out of 3 people found this helpful
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    5 out of 5

    Very Nice!

    Written By Ron, Chandler, AZ on Thursday, September 03, 2009
    Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
     
    I wanted to upgrade my old Alpine CDA-9811 head unit, primarily to add
    USB input. The Crutchfield advisors gave me a few recommendations, and
    we quickly narrowed it down to this unit or the Alpine CDA-9886). At first, I
    was hesitant to get this unit (because of comments from other reviewers
    about the brightness*), but I decided to try it (since Crutchfield guaranteed
    it, and the Alpine I was looking at was still $70 higher). However, I really
    think this unit is brighter than my old one! I don't see any difference in the
    screen brightness from one side to the other. The unit sounds great, too.

    First impressions:
    - The front of the unit is very clean, with pretty simple controls.
    - Color options are great, very bright (but they make the rest of my dash
    look dim and weak)
    - The sub output is significantly higher than my previous unit (even though
    they are both 4V ).

    Other thoughts:
    - The controls were pretty easy to use, but the joystick is a little sensitive
    - USB folder/song navigation worked well, but fast forward/reverse in a
    long selection (>10 min) is painful.
    - Lots of control options, which I like, but haven't had time to play with
    them all.

    Overall, I'm very glad that I purchased!
    2 out of 3 people found this helpful
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    5 out of 5

    Awesome

    Written By myles1192, PA on Thursday, August 13, 2009
     
    I'll rate this with a simple list of Pro's and Con's... but first

    Alot of other people say that one half of the screen is darker than the other... I
    don't have that problem, I was worried about it when I got it, but so far my screen
    brightness is fairly even... As for not being able to see it in the daylight, the inside
    of my jeep is fairly dark no matter what, so I can't vouch for that... and now to my
    lists.

    Pros:
    Sound Quality
    Brings my Ipod sound quality to life on most songs
    Cool color options for the display
    Tons of sound processing options
    Overall fairly easy to use (once you learn it... huge learning curve)

    Cons:
    The control knobs could be a bit more sensitive
    You MUST read the instructions for everything, even to learn how to tune the
    radio... its extremely complicated.

    Overall, I would recomend this to anyone.
    2 out of 3 people found this helpful
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    4 out of 5

    I like it...

    Written By hittahomer, Atlanta, GA on Wednesday, July 29, 2009
     
    I want to clear up the display issue that some others mentioned - as it almost prevented me from buying this deck. The display can be switched from positive to negative - meaning that you can alternate from a black background with colored text, or a colored background with black text. This enables you to easily read the display from any angle, regardless whether it is day or night time.

    Now to the performance - a decent deck. Lots of cool features and customizations, although there is a bit of legwork to be done upon initial setup. I like that you can customize EQ settings depending on device. Also, the built in x-over is excellent. In addition to variations between front and rear speakers, you can adjust the slope if you're looking for a gradual cut, or immediate. There is a plethora of sound controls that really enable you to fine tune the sound to your liking.

    The ipod integration is fairly intuitive. After a few minutes of playing around with it, I think I have a pretty good handle on it. Not exactly like the Alpine ipod deck, but still a good integration. You can essentially flip through the ipod menu as if it were in front of you - just slower.

    Cons - wish it had actual preset buttons, although I think I will adjust to the knob over time.
    The knob is sometimes trigger happy, and other times nothin.
    Glossy - someone stated that this thing smudges easily. I second that, it collects more fingerprints than a penitentiary.
    6 out of 7 people found this helpful
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    4 out of 5

    Great value

    Written By Pat, Lexington, KY on Wednesday, July 29, 2009
    Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
     
    I purchased this deck while shopping for the cheapest model that would charge and play my iphones and ipods. I picked this one up and it does almost everything well.

    I agree the display is difficult to read but switching the colors helped for me. I chose one of the green/aqua shades which is easy to see in any light.

    The iPhone adapter works great. You do not need to buy the cable, the one that came with your iPhone/iPod works fine. The only problem is that sometimes when I receive a call or try to run another app on the phone, the deck has an "USB Error" and you have to turn it off and back on to refresh the connection. This is not too much of a hassle because you can do it all from the remote.

    I was disappointed when it would not work with my older 40gb iPod. It only works with the newer iPods (nanos, classic, touch, etc.). So eventually I will be getting a larger iPod to make up for it.

    Overall, there is no deck for the price that can beat it for iPhone charging and playing!
    2 out of 4 people found this helpful
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    5 out of 5

    INCREDIBLE!!!

    Written By Adam, Martinez, Ca. on Monday, July 27, 2009
    Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
     
    I installed the Kenwood Excelon KDC-X693 myself in no time at all. This unit has so many more features than I expected. We are still learning more and more as we use it. Infact, I can't seem to get the remote out of my wife's hands so I can play with it. One of the best feature is the illuminating lights that blink with the music, it puts my 2 1/2 yr old to sleep while on road trips. I recommend this unit to anyone looking into purchasing a new stereo. Kenwood has out done themselves again!!! Thank you Crutchfield for all the questions you answered for me to help me choose this unit. Your staff goes above and beyond their duties when it comes to customer service.
    2 out of 4 people found this helpful
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    5 out of 5

    I love this deck

    Written By Mike, Toano, VA on Tuesday, July 14, 2009
    Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
     
    The deck does everything I need it to do and more. First off it is beautiful. I love the controls dispite the compliants on other reviews. I am using this deck with a 4 channel Alpine amp and four JL Audio 5x7's in my single cab Ford Ranger and it sounds great.
    2 out of 4 people found this helpful
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    5 out of 5

    Not perfect, but pretty close

    Written By Paris, Arlington, VA on Saturday, June 27, 2009
     
    My very first thoughts on the X693 is WOW, this thing has so many options. Everything is customizable especially sound with different EQs, cabin profiles, even speaker size profiles to maximize the sound from your head unit.

    There are some bad things to mention. First the display reflects lot of glare which is compensated by a contrast option to help brighten up the display to combat the glare.

    The radio presets have no direct input on the face panel which isn't a big deal but it would have been nice if Kenwood would have displayed the station and possibly call letters for each preset.

    Aside from those not picks there are a lot of things to praise about this unit. The audio sounds above average especially with the price point of this head unit. The direct iPod control seems to be spot on only taking a couple seconds to register songs. The radio turner is superb pulling in stations the stock head unit could not and its RDS tagging comes up quickly.

    While I have only had this for a day now I am thoroughly impressed with it thus far. It's not perfect but this review deserves five stars primarily from features that some units much more simply do not have.
    1 out of 2 people found this helpful
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    5 out of 5

    Everything expected

    Written By Bachman101, Roanoke, VA on Friday, June 19, 2009
     
    I purchased this headunit to replace some discontinued JVC deck and i knew the SQ was gunna be upgraded but wow, i was amazed at the bass and loudness without sounding scratchy. It was such an upgrade and i was surprised. It's features allow you to do pretty much everything you could want all in the HU which is pretty surprising. I like how i can make certain frequencies louder than others for perfect tuning. Also the colour schemes you can do makes this awesome for me or anyone wanting to make the color match the interior in your car or anything. Im extremely happy with this purchase and glad i made it, and im glad i only had to pay this much rather than buying an alpine with a hefty price tag. Kenwood came to play this year!
    1 out of 2 people found this helpful
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    5 out of 5

    Excellent

    Written By dman777, Austin, TX on Saturday, June 06, 2009
    Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
     
    This thing is so cool. I am still geeking out over it. Here's what I like:

    PROS:
    1) Sound Quality!!!
    2) The design and aesthetics.
    3) Complete customization
    4) USB is in the back. I am so glad about this. I plan on buying a massive USB stick and hardly changing it out. I ran the USB wire to my glove compartment and I don't have to mess with it. It is also out of sight for any thieves. It would of sucked if it was in the front.
    5) The lights and colors!
    6) Build Quality.

    CONS:
    The only thing I don't like is having to click the right knob inwards to choose a selection. I would rather be a dedicated button for that. But this is no way a deterent this stereo. I have to be for real, if there was anything major I didn't like about this unit I would have to be making it up.

    This stereo is cool I can't stop messing with it. I wish I was on the road right now just so I could use it, but I'm sick of driving.
    1 out of 3 people found this helpful
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    3 out of 5

    Kenwood Excelon KDC-X693

    Written By Joe, Clinton, Il on Tuesday, May 19, 2009
    Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
     
    Beatifull at night, just like the other reviews any amount of sun and u cant c it which is really annoying. Im sending this head unit back. It be great if i could read the stupid thing in the daytime.
    1 out of 5 people found this helpful
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    4 out of 5

    Continues the Excelon Legacy

    Written By Richard, New Haven, CT on Monday, May 18, 2009
    Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
     
    This is my 3rd Excelon - And judging by this device, I WILL continue to do so in the future, although I am biased toward Kenwood:

    Pros: - USB/iPOD hookup/navigation (I love the rear USB/Aux)
    - 5 Band EQ
    - Crossover / Sub Controls
    - Just plain easy to use with quality sound - especially from an amp powering all speakers and sub combo.
    - That is a GREAT price for this unit, and Crutchfield really hooks you up with free wires/dash kits/shipping/etc...

    Cons: - Display SUCKS in daylight. Honestly... I almost thought about exchanging it because it seems to be dimmer on the right side. The color is noticeably brighter on the left side. I thought the thing had a malfunction but similar unitsare the same. Looks GREAT at night but it makes it very very hard to navigate an iPod in daylight... It looks nothing like the picture.
    - I was spoiled with DMask/motorized faceplates so the flip down is kinda just EH for me...

    If the display was better this would be a perfect unit - 4 stars.
    2 out of 3 people found this helpful
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    4 out of 5

    Kenwood Excelon KDC-X693

    Written By John, Texas on Friday, May 08, 2009
     
    This radio is very sharp looking and can produce some nice sounds. It has many capabilities and options but can be somewhat complicated and difficult to operate. It takes some time to learn and use it. Overall I would recommend.
    1 out of 2 people found this helpful
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    4 out of 5

    Nice for the Price

    Written By Zach, Cincinnati, OH on Thursday, May 07, 2009
    Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
     
    I installed this radio in my 99 Ford Mustang. The screen is hard to see in the sun, but I'll make it! The iPod connection and menu system is smooth and easy to use. The two knob design is great.

    As for the MACH system in the Mustang...yuck! I'm going to have to purchase an amp and four speakers and replace the wiring in the car. The MACH system is awful with an after market radio. I can't wait to hear this head unit with the upcoming upgrade!!

    Thanks to Crutchfield for the help in picking this radio!
    5 out of 6 people found this helpful
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    3 out of 5

    Kenwood Excelon KDC-X693

    Written By Geoff, Rochester, NY on Monday, May 04, 2009
    Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
     
    A very nice head unit with good looks and great sound. Some improvements could be made.

    Pros:
    -Sound quality is excellent.
    -The Digital Signal Processing features are varied and robust.
    -Stores sets of DSP presets
    -DSP bypass setting
    -Multi-line display shows a lot of information at once.
    -Radio Data System
    -Variable coloring for the left and right sides and the display.
    -Quickly recognizes my USB flash drive and my iPhone.

    Cons:
    -That nice display can catch a lot of sun glare. Depending on your car this may be an issue.
    -All those fancy DSP features take a lot of tuning to get things sounding just they way you want them.
    -Navigation between tracks/folders/stations and through the menus is all done with the right stick on the front of the unit, in my car I have to lean over a bit - this could be better or worse depending on your car.
    -That nav. stick/wheel can be very particular about getting the 'click' to select things, very easy to push the stick in a direction when you meant to click it in.
    -No quick access to the EQ or DSP presets that I have found - you always have to go into the menu, and it takes at least 10 'clicks' to adjust the EQ or turn up/off the bass boost.

    Overall, I am happy with the unit. Once you get the DSP set up for EACH input source you should not need to adjust it much, if ever. It sounds great, reacts quickly to commands and looks pretty good to boot.

    I would give it extra points for integration and features if I was running a Kenwood amp.
    4 out of 5 people found this helpful
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    4 out of 5

    A radio for geeks

    Written By jacktoz, Northampton MA on Friday, May 01, 2009
     
    The setup is involved and the user has to be comfortable working with menus that go several levels deep. Pretty much every aspect of playback for each source is adjustable as is just about every aspect of the display.

    The time delay correction parameters make a noticeable difference in image specificity and placement. The digital eq functions are less useful; it could use more bands, freq and Q adjustment.

    A couple of gripes: The gloss black finish is a fingerprint magnet and looks cheesy against the satin black finish of my dash. Station presets are a three step process; you have to scroll the preset and enter. Adjusting tone settings involves digging into the menus. It's not something you can do on the fly.

    Strengths: I have no comparative experience, but the iPod interface is great. It's intuitive and works flawlessly. The radio reception is typical Kenwood, which I've always considered one of the industry's best. Tuning is a bit cumbersome as it is a toggle rather than a twist function, but you get used to it quickly. The unit's sound is quite acceptable and the power is adequate. The high pass filters on the front and rear speakers let you roll off the deep bass without affecting sound quality at all. Afterall, you're not going to get 30Hz out of the 6" door speaker, roll it off at 50Hz and accept the headroom gain.

    All an all, a stellar performer for little money. Just make sure the user is not menuphobic.
    2 out of 5 people found this helpful
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    4 out of 5

    Close but no cigar

    Written By Miles, Fayetteville, NC on Thursday, April 30, 2009
    Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
     
    I bought this HU to replace my terrible factory cd played in my 2004 Crown Victoria. I usually install these things myself but I had also purchased 4 Kenwood 6x8s and a 4 channel amp so I had someone install for me.

    --Pros

    - This thing sounds amazing. Of course I had new speakers and an amp but still this rocks! There's almost too much customization in this bad boy. You can set what size the speakers are, which location, what kind of vehicle, and so on, and so on...

    - It looks pretty awesome too. You can change just about every aspect of the display including colors, text, and order of which things are displayed.

    --Cons

    - The only reason I'm giving this 4 instead of 5 is the display is hard to see in the daylight. I know this has something to do with the bracket Crutchfield includes with the cd player. The crown vic has a double din dash and with the new bracket the cd player is in the top half of the slot and is pointing up, so you have to almost get above the cd player and look down on it to see what you are clicking.

    Basically this is a good setup for me and with a minor adjustment on installation it would be even better.

    50 out of 54 people found this helpful
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