If you want a large and impressive display, then check out Sony's CDX-M8805X CD/MP3 receiver! Its Active Black Panel (ABP) is designed to give you lots of dash-board entertainment while playing your CDs and MP3 discs. It has a full-motion display with high-resolution graphics and minimal button clutter; there are only two buttons on the faceplate — one for power-down and one to open the face.

When the face is closed, you control the receiver with the full-function remote. When you open the ABP, you have access to a full control panel with a smaller display (see the "Photos & Videos" tab above). Turn off the ignition, and the receiver enters stealth mode, making the display and buttons disappear!

Sony's EQ7 offers seven preset sound curves for convenient tuning, or you can zero in on sonic perfection with the 7-band equalizer. Most cars today have the front speakers low in the doors, which directs the sound at your feet — not cool. Dynamic Soundstage Organizer raises the stereo image off the floor, making your music sound more immediate and exciting.

Excellent AM/FM reception, BBE MP sound processing, and three sets of 4-volt preamp outputs complete the feature package. Add a compatible XM tuner and an antenna and enjoy for the crystal-clear, diverse programming of XM Satellite Radio (subscription also required). If you're not using a CD changer or XM tuner, then you can use that connection on the receiver as an auxiliary input. That's smart thinking from Sony!

Product Highlights:

  • Active Black Panel faceplate
  • blue button lighting
  • fluorescent display
  • spectrum analyzer
  • plays CDs, CD-Rs, and CD-RWs (including discs loaded with MP3 files)
  • SSIR-EXA tuner
  • 18 FM/12 AM presets
  • seek tuning
  • BBE MP — improves the sound of your compressed music
  • Dynamic Soundstage Organizer
  • EQ7 (7-band equalizer and 7 preset tone curves)
  • XM Satellite Radio controls (XM subscription, optional XM tuner, and antenna required to receive the satellite radio signal) — service is available only in the lower 48 states, not available in Alaska, Hawaii, or U.S. territories
  • CD changer controls
  • rear auxiliary input (when not using a CD changer or XM tuner)
  • 4-volt front, rear and subwoofer preamp outputs
  • high-pass and low-pass filter
  • clock
  • wireless remote
  • 23.2 watts RMS/52 peak x 4 channels
  • CD frequency response 10-20,000 Hz
  • CD signal-to-noise ratio 120 dB
  • FM sensitivity 9 dBf
  • warranty: 1 year
  • Our 60-day money-back guarantee

Why replace your factory radio?

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

Hands-on research

What's in the box?

Download owner's manual

  • AM/FM/CD/Changer controller receiver with 10-amp fuse inserted into chassis
  • Sleeve
  • Trim ring
  • Wiring harness
  • RM-X143A Wireless remote control
  • 1 CR2025 Lithium battery (installed in remote)
  • 2 Radio removal tools
  • 4 ISO-mount screws
  • Operating Instructions (English/French/Spanish)
  • Installation/Connections sheet (English/French/Spanish)
  • Warranty sheet

Product Research

Features
Changer Controls
Note

Features

Drive S: The CDX-M8805X features the Drive S chassis platform. Drive S includes the CD mechanism, audio stages, 12 V power supply, and tuner section. The CD mechanism includes an improved suspension to resist shocks, a new motor that draws less power, and a fast new low-current pickup that improves durability and CD playback accuracy. The new 52W x 4 S-MOSFET Power IC produces clearer, more accurate sound, less distortion, and a higher signal-to-noise ratio than previous designs.

Active Black Panel: The CDX-M8805X features the Active Black Panel with full-motion fluorescent display. Since there are only two small buttons on the front, the display area is very large. When the unit is on, the bright fluorescent display offers numerous modes of full-motion graphics. When the unit is turned off, the entire face goes dark making it difficult to be spotted by a potential thief.

Full-Motion Fluorescent Display: The unit's fluorescent display technology gives you better resolution than conventional LCDs, and lets data transition faster for smooth, clean, solid movement of graphics. The resolution of the display is 130(H) x 39(V). Using the Image button on the face of the unit, you can cycle through 5 wallpaper displays, 5 spectrum analyzer displays, and 3 motion displays. Using the Auto Image function, you can randomly show the different displays, or you can step repeatedly through the spectrum analyzer displays or the motion displays. 

Motorized Fold-Down Faceplate: This unit is equipped with a motorized fold-down faceplate. When you press the Open button, the faceplate flips down, revealing the CD slot, a smaller display and a full control panel. You can fully control the receiver with the face open or closed (using the supplied remote). The panel protrudes approximately 1.75" when the face is open, and just under 1" when the face is closed.

MP3 Playback: This unit can play MP3 files recorded on CD-ROM, CD-R, and CD-RW discs in ISO9660 Level 1/Level 2, Joliet, and Romeo formats. Each disc should have a maximum of 150 folders and 300 files/folders. During MP3 playback, the unit displays any recorded ID3 Tag information.

BBE MP: When playing back MP3 files, the BBE MP circuit recovers and recreates harmonics, restoring the detail, warmth and nuances that existed in the original recording.

Dynamic Soundstage Organizer (DSO): Sony's Dynamic Soundstage Organizer uses proprietary circuitry to induce subtle phase shifts, simulating a sound source that is placed higher than the actual speakers in the vehicle. For example, when the DSO function is used in a vehicle equipped with speakers mounted low in the front doors, it creates virtual speakers in the dash to raise the soundstage. This unit offers three levels of DSO, each with a larger and higher soundstage. You can store the DSO setting for each source.

EQ7: You may select one of the following EQ presets: Xplod, Vocal, Club, Jazz, New Age, Rock, or Custom. For each preset, you can adjust the following frequencies: 62Hz, 157Hz, 396Hz, 1kHz, 2.5kHz, 6.3kHz, and 16kHz. The level of each frequency can be adjusted from +10dB to -10dB in 1dB increments.

Source Tone Memory: Each source (AM/FM/CD/Changer) can store its own EQ7 levels.

XM Satellite Radio Controls: This unit can control an optional Sony XM tuner. The optional tuner, along with an antenna and subscription, will allow you to receive XM Satellite Radio. XM Satellite Radio programming features up to 100 channels of digital-quality music, news, talk, sports, entertainment, and children's programming.

SSIR-EXA Adaptive Reception: The SSIR-EXA tuner is equipped with "Adaptive Reception". The Adaptive Reception feature has two modes ("IF Auto" and "IF Wide") for optimizing FM reception. The "Wide" mode decreases the tuner's selectivity but results in better frequency response. The "IF Auto" mode automatically adjusts the tuner for a good balance between frequency response and minimum station-to-station interference. The Adaptive Reception feature cannot be turned off.

Best Tuning Memory (BTM): This feature selects stations with the strongest signals within the selected band and stores them in order of their frequency.

Station Memo: You can assign a name of up to 8 characters in length to each tuner preset station. Station Memos can be used with the List-up function to locate a station.

4 V Mono Subwoofer Preamp Outputs: In addition to the 4 V front and rear preamp outputs, this unit includes one set of 4 V mono subwoofer preamp outputs. Although there are two female RCA subwoofer outputs, the same signal is carried by both connections. A low-pass filter (see below) can be used to filter high frequencies from the signals output by the subwoofer outs.

High-pass Filter: The front and rear preamp outputs have a selectable high-pass filter that may be set to 78Hz, 125Hz, or off.

Low-pass Filter: The subwoofer preamp outputs have a selectable low-pass filter that may be set to 78Hz, 125Hz, or off.

Aux Lite Auxiliary Input: The CDX-M8805X has an auxiliary input on the rear panel, allowing you to connect a separate audio source, such as a portable MiniDisc or MP3 player, or the audio output from a mobile/portable DVD player. In the past, Sony receivers required a separate adapter, however, this unit's "Aux Lite" input allows you to directly connect the auxiliary unit to the receiver's stereo RCA input jacks.

Note: If a CD/MD changer is connected to this receiver, you will not be able to connect an auxiliary source without an adapter (158XA300).

Dimmer: This unit is equipped with a wire that Sony calls an illumination lead, however, it acts as a dimmer lead. When the dimmer mode is set to "Auto" and the illumination lead receives power, the display dims to a preset level. The display brightness is not affected by the vehicle's dimmer control. Also, the dimmer feature may be turned off, so dimming does not take place when the illumination lead receives power. You may choose to dim the display at all times by setting the dimmer mode to "On".

Note: For this feature to work, the unit's illumination wire must be connected to your vehicle's dash lights wire.

45-Degree Installation: For flexibility of installation, this unit can be mounted between 0 (horizontal) and 45 degrees.

Wired Remote Compatibility: In addition to the supplied wireless remote, the receiver can be controlled by an optional wired rotary commander (item 158RMX4S). Once the wired remote is connected, you can use the menu system to change the control direction of the remote, depending on which side of the steering wheel you choose to mount the remote.

Changer Controls

Compatibility: This unit is compatible with Sony Unilink CD and MD changers. In addition, this unit can control compatible Sony Mobile Memory Stick players.

Multiple Changer Control: A maximum of 5 CD changers, 5 CD/MP3 changers, or 5 MD changers may be connected to this receiver. When connecting CD, CD/MP3 and MD changers, you may connect up to a total of 7 changers (but there must not be more than 5 of one type of changer). When connecting more than one changer to this receiver, you must use the Sony XA-C30 source selector.

CD/MP3 Changer Controls: When a CD/MP3 changer is connected to this unit, you can perform the following functions: disc skip, track skip, audible track search, album skip, track repeat, album repeat, disc repeat, disc random, album random, changer random (plays all the tracks in the current changer in random order), and all random, which plays the tracks from the disc loaded in the head unit and all connected changers in random order.

CD Text/MD Memo Display: When used with a compatible CD changer and a CD Text encoded CD, this unit will display the CD Text information. When using a compatible Sony MD changer, this receiver can display disc and track names that have been prerecorded on MDs.

Disc Memo: When a changer with the Custom File function is connected to this unit, you can enter names, up to 8 characters long, into memory for up to 110 discs. After a disc has been given a custom title, you may search for the disc, by title, using the List-up function.

Auto Scroll: If the text being displayed exceeds 12 characters and the Auto Scroll function is on, the information will automatically scroll across the screen.

Note

Display Illumination/Clock Display: Pressing the Off button once will turn off audio output, but the clock display and face/button illumination remain on. This makes the clock display and face/button illumination "Keyed" instead of "Unit On" only. To turn the unit off completely, you must press the Off button for two seconds.

Note: When installing in a vehicle without an accessory power wire at the radio location, you must turn the radio completely off (this defeats keyed operation), or you may wire the accessory power wire of this radio to an alternate source of accessory power to retain keyed clock and face/button illumination operation.

Our Product Research Team

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