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Panasonic CQ-C9901U

CD player with MP3 / WMA playback

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  • Panasonic CQ-C9901U

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  • Panasonic CQ-C9901U

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  • Panasonic CQ-C9901U

    Remote

Item #: 133C9901
 

Review Summary

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Our take on the Panasonic CQ-C9901U

by Tim Sprinkle
Panasonic

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.

Incredible sound and incredible style. Panasonic's CQ-C9901U CD player bundles the amazing performance of the Class T internal amplifier, with a 512-color OEL display for a bright, full-colored faceplate that matches the stereo's dynamic sound.

OEL technology offers a wide viewing angle and far greater contrast than LCD, for screen information that's easy to read from just about anywhere in the car. You can choose from the included background images, or customize the display with the included Image Studio software. It's easy to convert your own photos and videos, or download from the variety of ready-to-use files on Panasonic's website.

And if you think you know clear sound, just wait until you hear what the CQ-C9901U's Class T internal amp (31 watts RMS/70 peak x 4 channels) can do for your music, driving your speakers with more clean power than most other receivers on the market. Crystal-clear highs, thunderous bass, and true-to-life detail — you get it all. And, thanks to start-to-finish digital processing, the signal remains isolated for some seriously low noise levels. It all adds up to outstanding sound, no matter how loud or soft you like it.

SRS Circle Surround Automotive replicates a surround sound effect, giving you a natural sound stage in every corner of the vehicle. TruBass and FOCUS processing also help to restore the rich bass and sizzling treble tones to your compressed MP3 and WMA music files. Contour the sound with Panasonic's SQ9 — its 9-band equalizer includes adjustable center frequencies for razor sharp adjustments, with six preset tone curves for quick settings.

You get Panasonic's Alphatuner V AM/FM tuner with digital Radio DSP, too, for distortion-free performance and great sound from all your favorite stations. MP3 and WMA playback give you the convenience of an in-dash jukebox, or connect a DVD/CD changer for even more entertainment flexibility. Add an optional XM tuner, and join the satellite radio revolution! (XM Radio subscription, tuner, and antenna required to receive the satellite radio signal).

Have your eye on a bigger system? The CQ-C9901U's three sets of 5-volt preamp outputs make it easy to connect your external amps, while the onboard high- and low-pass filters allow you to select the frequencies you want to send to your speakers and subs. Add an iPod or other portable player to your system with the auxiliary input. You can even add a second AUX-IN source rather than a CD changer, if you prefer.

See more info on this item

Highlights:

  • CD receiver with built-in Class T amplifier (31 watts RMS/70 peak x 4 channels)
  • motorized, detachable, slide-down face with customizable OEL display
  • plays CDs, CD-Rs, and CD-RWs (including discs loaded with MP3 and WMA files)
  • 9-band Sound Quality EQ (SQ9) with adjustable center frequencies
  • SRS Circle Surround Automotive
  • Super Bass Control Subwoofer
  • XM satellite radio-ready
  • CEA-2006 compliant amplifier
  • CD changer controls
  • two rear auxiliary inputs
  • 5-volt front, rear, and subwoofer preamp outputs
  • switchable high- and low-pass filters
  • Alphatuner V AM/FM tuner with Radio DSP
  • 18 FM / 6 AM presets
  • Day and Night design
  • clock
  • wireless remote
  • CD frequency response: 20-20,000 Hz
  • CD signal-to-noise ratio: 106 dB
  • FM sensitivity: 12.2 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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Yes
RMS Power Output
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31 watts
Peak Output
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70 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
Video Screen
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No
Preamp Voltage
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5 volts
Display Color
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OEL
Key Button Color
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Blue
EQ Bands
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9
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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2
USB Input
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Memory Card Slot
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No
Bluetooth Compatible
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Satellite Radio Ready
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XM
HD Radio
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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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12.2 dBf
European Tuning
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No
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 15-amp fuse inserted into chassis
  • DC/DC converter (attached to unit)
  • Sleeve
  • Face
  • Hard plastic face case
  • EUR7641010 Wireless remote control
  • 1 CR2025 battery (installed in remote)
  • Trim ring
  • Wiring harness
  • 2 Sleeve lock cancel plates (radio removal tools)
  • Rear support strap
  • 1 Mounting bolt (5mm diameter)
  • 1 Hex nut (5mm diameter)
  • 1 Self-tapping screw (5mm diameter x 16mm)
  • 1 Face security screw
  • Operating Instructions (English/French/Spanish)
  • Installation Instructions (English/French/Spanish)
  • Operating Instructions correction sheet (English/French)
  • Electrical Connections sheet (attached to unit)
  • Panasonic Customer Care card (extended service plan)
  • Security screw instruction sheet

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
Notes

Features

High Power Digital Amplifier: The Panasonic MXE CQ-C9901U is equipped with a high power digital amplifier, which controls power amplification by rapidly switching the current on and off to drive the speakers. This promotes cooler operation so higher power can be handled without increasing heatsink size. The receiver produces 31 watts RMS, 70 watts peak per channel.

CEA-2006 Compliant: The specifications given by Panasonic for the built-in amplifier comply with the CEA-2006 mobile amplifier power testing and measurement standards from the CEA (Consumer Electronics Association). All manufacturers who comply with the standard can display the CEA-2006 logo on their product.

MP3/WMA Compatible: This unit can play MP3 and WMA files recorded onto CD-R and CD-RW discs in ISO 9660 Level 1/Level 2, Apple Extension to ISO 9660, Joliet, and Romeo. The player can support up to 999 files, 255 files in one folder, 8 levels, and 255 folders.

XM Satellite Ready: You can receive XM Satellite Radio by connecting the optional Terk XMD1000 XM Direct receiver (206XMD1000) and the XM Direct Smart Adapter for Panasonic (206XMDPAN1). A subscription to XM Satellite Radio is required to receive the over 130 channels of digital-quality programming. Note: You cannot connect an XM receiver and a CD changer at the same time.

Motorized Sliding Face: The CQ-C9901U features a motorized sliding detachable face with a large bright display. When you press the eject button, the face slides down to allow you to insert or remove a CD. For best visibility, you can utilize the 3-stage tilt function to angle the faceplate at 15°, 25°, or 35°. When the security function is activated, an alarm will sound and a message will appear to remind you to remove the faceplate. After the faceplate is removed, a flashing red LED warns potential thieves. A hard plastic face case is supplied for carrying your detached faceplate.

Note: When the receiver is angled at 35°, the bottom of the faceplate protrudes approximately 1-1/4" from the trim ring.

512 Color OEL Display: The 512 color OEL (Organic Electro Luminescence) display has 256 x 64 pixels for impressive clarity. OEL is a self-illuminating display technology that is easy to read, with a wide viewing angle and about five times the contrast of an LCD screen. Well suited to displaying motion graphics, OEL has rapid low-temperature response time for reduced ghosting and flicker compared to LCDs.

Graphic Pattern: You can choose from the following graphic patterns (motion displays):

  • A: Indy car racing
  • B: people surfing and snowboarding
  • C: futuristic cityscape
  • D: swimming fish and stingray

Still Image Pattern: You can choose from the following still images:

  • 1: front view of an Indy racecar
  • 2: side view of an Indy racecar
  • 3: side view of a sports car
  • 4: stylized flames
  • 5: swimming fish
  • 6: lightning
  • 7: light pattern
  • 8: arcing electricity
  • 9: sunset
  • 10: island

Customize Function: The Customize Function allows you to replace the Graphic Patterns, Still Image Patterns, Opening Message, and Closing Message on this unit. You can download new images from Panasonic's website, or you can capture your own images with a digital camera or camcorder. Your own images must be processed using Image Studio software, which is available for download on Panasonic's website. The software converts your image data to a format that is compatible with the unit's display. Once the images have been converted, you can burn them onto a CD-R or CD-RW disc. The disc can then be used to transfer the images to the head unit.

3-Level Dimmer: The display's brightness can be set to one of three dimmer levels. These dimmer levels are fully accessible using the faceplate controls--no wires to connect to your vehicle's headlight circuit.

CD Changer Controls: The CQ-C9901U has controls for a compatible Panasonic CD changer, such as the CX-DP880. CD Changer functions include: Disc Skip, Direct Disc Select (remote only), Track Skip, Track Search (FF/RW), Disc Intro Scan (remote only), Track Intro Scan (remote only), Disc repeat, Track repeat, Disc random and Track random. Note: You cannot connect a CD changer and an XM receiver at the same time.

Subwoofer Output: In addition to front and rear preamp outputs, the receiver has a non-fading, two-channel subwoofer output. You can adjust the volume of the subwoofer output from -6dB to +6dB in 2dB increments. In addition, you can set the frequency of the built-in low pass filter at 60Hz to 160Hz in 5Hz increments, or the filter can be turned off.

High Pass Filter: The receiver's built-in high-pass filter can be set to 90Hz to 225Hz in 5Hz increments or turned off.

Super Bass Control Subwoofer (SBC-SW): You can drive small subwoofers with the rear speaker outputs with the SBC-SW. When the SBC-SW is activated, the subwoofer level and low pass filter settings are applied to the rear speaker outputs.

SRS CS Automotive: SRS Circle Surround Automotive (CS Auto) lets you experience a natural sound field anywhere in the vehicle, unlike other sound field manipulation methods such as time delay. SRS TruBass can be applied independently to front and rear speakers and the subwoofer. SRS Focus can be applied independently to front and rear speakers, or mixed between front and rear. There are 3 CS Auto presets: Music (default for sources other than AM radio), Cinema, or Mono (default for AM).

SQ9: The CQ-C9901U features a SQ9 "Sound Quality" 9-band equalizer with selectable center frequencies and 6 EQ presets. The presets include Rock, Pop, Vocal, Jazz, Club and Flat. You can further adjust the presets at any of the 9 EQ bands and save the custom settings into memory for instant recall. The 9 bands can be adjusted from -12dB to +12dB and you can choose the center frequency from the following (default center frequency in bold):

  • Band 1: 25, 31.5, 35, 40, 50, 55, 60, 62.5, 65, 70, 75, and 80 Hz
  • Band 2: 100, 105, 110, 115, 120, 125, 130, 135, 140, 145, 150, 155, and 160 Hz
  • Band 3: 200, 220, 230, 240, 250, 270, 280, 290, 300, and 315 Hz
  • Band 4: 400, 425, 450, 475, 500, 525, 550, 575, 600, and 630 Hz
  • Band 5: 800, 850, 900, 950, 1k, 1.05k, 1.10k, 1.15k, 1.20k, and 1.25k Hz
  • Band 6: 1.6k, 1.7k, 1.8k, 1.9k, 2k, 2.1k, 2.2k, 2.3k, 2.4k, and 2.5k Hz
  • Band 7: 3.15k, 3.25k, 3.5k, 3.75k, 4k, 4.25k, 4.5k, 4.75k, and 5k Hz
  • Band 8: 6.3k, 6.5k, 7k, 7.5k, 8k, 8.5k, 9k, 9.5k, and 10k Hz
  • Band 9: 12.5k, 13k, 14k, 15k, 16k, 17k, 18k, 19k, and 20k Hz

Seat Position Settings: In addition to the SQ Presets and SQ9 Equalizer settings, you can select a Seat Position where the sound enhancements will be focused. The Seat Position settings include Front Right (passenger), Front Left (driver), Front All, Rear All, or Off.

Mute/Attenuate: This unit allows you to choose between mute (volume at 0), attenuate level 1 (volume decreased by 10 steps), or attenuate level 2 (volume decreased by 5 steps when you want to decrease the volume instantly. After selecting mute or attenuate 1 or 2 in the menu, pressing the Mute button activates either function and the Mute indicator light glows in the display.

Alphatuner V: The CQ-C9901U's Alphatuner V tuner is designed to help suppress multi-path distortion and reduce the problem of radio signal reflections in metropolitan areas. It also features increased sensitivity for weak signal areas.

Radio DSP: By digitally converting and processing AM and FM broadcast signals, adjacent interference and multipath distortion are greatly reduced. The radio's IF filter prevents neighboring frequencies from interfering with reception of the desired station. Radio DSP uses an advanced algorithm to perform this task with digital control by automatically adjusting the IF filter's bandwidth in response to changing interference as you drive.

Direct Memory (D-M): You can store a favorite station into Direct Memory. You can immediately tune to that frequency at any time, even if the unit is playing another source, by pressing the D-M button.

Auxiliary Inputs: A set of female RCA jacks (labeled AUX1-IN) are provided to allow the connection of a portable audio source. Just connect your portable cassette, MD or MP3 player to this unit, and you can listen to the audio from the portable player through the speakers in your mobile audio system. The jacks are on a 6" long pigtail attached to the back of the unit. A second set of female RCA jacks (labeled CH/AUX2-IN) can be used to connect a CD changer, XM receiver, or a second auxiliary source.

Remote Control: The CQ-C9901U is equipped with a wireless remote control (EUR7641010). The dimensions of the remote are: W=1.64", H=0.664", L=3.762". The remote is powered by a CR2025 lithium battery (supplied).

Notes

Display Note: Pressing and holding the Source button turns the unit off completely. After the unit has been turned off, you can use the DISP button to switch the clock display and face/button illumination on and off. If you leave the clock display and face/button illumination on, they are "keyed". If you turn the clock display and face/button illumination off, they only turn on when the unit is turned on ("unit on" operation).

Note: The Source button stays lit even with the clock display and other button illumination turned off.

Installation Note: The CQ-C9901U features a DC/DC converter for additional power. The converter is attached to the back of the receiver via a 5-wire, 15" harness. The harness is hardwired at the receiver and can be detached at the converter. The converter is 3.454" long x 1.541" high x 1.812" wide. Space for mounting the converter in the dash should be considered when installing this receiver.

 
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Panasonic CQ-C9901U Reviews

Average Customer Review:

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Filter by rating:
5 out of 5

Amazing HU

Written By Ben, Rochester,NY on Friday, January 27, 2006
 
This receiver is the best thing that I could have gotten for my car. Sound is wonderful, really powerful. I have infinity kappa's in the rear deck and infinity reference's in the front, and this HU makes them sing. I would recommend this unit to anyone looking to impress people when they get into your car.
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5 out of 5

Panasonic CQ-C9901U

Written By kingofnyc, New York City on Friday, January 13, 2006
 
This HU is great. it took me 30 min. to install in vw passat. it looks really great to. the screen is very sharp and bright. you can dim the brightness of the unit in 3 steps low, mid, high. the remote is wery well designed and easy to use. the menus are very easy to navigate through. i giured everything out without a manual in like 15-20 min. I chose this unit because it is one of the most poverful on the market right now. it brout my speakers to life. i'm using my stock speakers. and a factory istaled amp. i have a factory instaled moonson sound system. and it sounds so much better with this HU. compare to stock. I made a right choice by buying this unit. I think it's worth every penny i spend. Just need to add nice component speakers. and it will sound like you right there.
1 out of 1 people found this helpful
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5 out of 5

Perfect Digital Sound

Written By James, Fort Pierce, Florida on Wednesday, September 28, 2005
Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
 
This radio has LOTS of sound adjustments and "toys" to play with. The Preloaded screen graphics are sharp and detailed, you can add your own easly. The 9 band EQ with single band adgustments really fine tunes the audio for the Perfect sound. It also has 6 presets. I have install digital amps for house music applications, The T-class amp with this unit can match the sound clairty and performace. I also have XM connect (XMD1000) and The sound is crystal clear.

overall This Head unit Gives A lot of power and performace With crystal clear sound
11 out of 11 people found this helpful
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5 out of 5

Worth it

Written By ck, Phoenix,AZ on Sunday, June 12, 2005
 
Best sound that i've had in a car.
29 out of 75 people found this helpful
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For a more in-depth review and enhanced detailed information on the Panasonic CQ-C9901U, please visit the Crutchfield website product page (/ISEO-rccbcspd/p_133C9901/Panasonic-CQ-C9901U.html ).