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You can sum up Sony's 301-disc mega changer design with two words: brilliant engineering. The DVP-CX860 and -CX870D are among the few mega changers to feature 2-sided DVD playback! Sony's center-mounted laser is the key. When a DVD reaches the end of side 1, just hit the "Flip" button on the front panel or remote. The DVD returns to its slot, the disc tray rotates 180º, and the DVD re-loads from the other side and continues playing!

Despite its 301-disc capacity, the DVP-CX860 is relatively compact as mega changers go. The Disc Explorer™ feature can display a list of every loaded CD and DVD on your TV screen (requires direct video input on TV). Add in the top-notch DVD picture and super-clean search modes that Sony is famous for, and you've got one awesome player!


  • 300-DVD/CD changer plus single-disc slot
  • dual-side DVD playback
  • plays DVD-Video discs and CDs
  • SmoothScan search
  • SmoothSlow forward/reverse
  • Custom Parental Control (301-DVD)
  • DVD/CD Text
  • Virtual Enhanced Surround modes
  • optical and coaxial digital outputs for Dolby® Digital/DTS/PCM
  • 2 sets of A/V outputs (2 composite video, 2 S-video, and 1 component video)
  • input for PS/2-compatible PC keyboard
  • remote with glow-in-the-dark buttons (multibrand for TVs)
  • Sony Control S
  • 96kHz/24-bit audio D/A converter
  • audio signal-to-noise ratio 110 dB
  • 16-7/8"W x 6-3/16"H x 17-9/16"D
  • warranty: 1 year
  • designed for use with "Region 1" coded DVDs

Sony DVP-CX860 Reviews

Hands-on research

What's in the box?

Download owner's manual

  • 300 + 1 DVD/Video CD/CD changer
  • RMT-D123A Wireless remote
  • 2 "AA" batteries
  • 62" S-video cable
  • 57" stereo RCA A/V cable with attached 57" S-Link cable
  • Operating Instructions (English)
  • Operating Instructions (French)
  • Safeguards
  • Owner Registration Card
  • Warranty card
  • Digital Cinema Sound fact sheet
  • "Notes on using discs" sheet
  • Jacket Picture Collection Disc

Product Research

Remote Control Functions
Inputs and Outputs


The following types of discs can be played:

  • DVD: 5" or 3" single sided, single layer, NTSC,  ("Region 1" or "All Region" DVDs only)
  • DVD: 5" or 3" single sided, double layer, NTSC, ("Region 1" or "All Region" DVDs only)
  • DVD: 5" or 3" double sided, double layer, NTSC,  ("Region 1" or "All Region" DVDs only)
  • CD Audio: 5" or 3"
  • Video CD: 5" or 3"
  • CD-RW: 5" or 3"

Note: This unit cannot play CD-Rs.

Frequency Response:

  • CD: 2 Hz to 20 kHz (+/-0.5 dB)
  • DVD (at 48 kHz sampling frequency): 2 Hz to 22 kHz (+/-0.5 dB)
  • DVD (at 96 kHz sampling frequency): 2 Hz to 44 kHz (+/-1.0 dB)

THD: Less than 0.003%

Dynamic Range:

  • DVD: More than 100 dB
  • CD: More than 97 dB



  • For video and high quality digital sound, this unit can be used with any television with RCA audio and video inputs. Note that attaching it to a VCR in order to use the VCR as an RD demodulator is not recommended, since many DVDs are protected by MacroVision.
  • For home theater sound, it may be used with any home theater receiver since Dolby Surround is encoded in the stereo.
  • For Dolby Digital decoding or DTS decoding, it must be used with either a Dolby Digital or DTS decoder/receiver.

Disc Loading: The discs are loaded vertically into a rotary tray.

Disc Explorer: This unit can read the disc information of all the discs, load it into memory so that disc type, titles, and genre information can be displayed on the TV screen. Note that it can take up to 30 seconds per disc to load this information, and that since the information is linked to the slot (not the specific disc) the information will remain even if the disc is removed until a new disc is loaded or the load button is pressed again. Information can be stored in one of 7 folders (All discs, DVD only, CD only and custom folders A-D). DVDs and CDs/Video CDs are automatically placed in the DVD or CD folder. Folders A, B, C and D can each contain up to 301 discs and the same disc can appear in different folders. By filing a disc in a folder you can play only those discs, or set Program Play, Shuffle Play and Repeat Play for the disc within the folder. You can delete discs from Folders A to D, but you can only delete discs from the All, DVD or CD folders by removing the disc(s) from the unit. So long as the disc does not have DVD or CD Text you can label each disc with a disc memo of up to 16 characters and label each folder with up to 3 characters. You can indicate the genre of the disc by using genre presets available on the unit (Action, Drama, Non Feature, Western, Classical, Pop, Classics, Family, Sci-Fi, Country, Rock, Comedy, Horror, Thriller, Jazz-R&B, Others). If a jacket picture is available on the disc (this is rare at present time) it will automatically display the jacket picture.  If no jacket picture is available, a genre picture which is preloaded in the disc will appear instead.

Keyboard Input: Instead of using the jog/shuttle to label discs and folders, you can use an optional IBM PS/2-type keyboard using the front panel keyboard input.

Disc Sorting: You can sort discs in a folder by the disc slot number, text information or genre.

Disc Exchange: You cannot exchange discs without first stopping the unit.

Easy Play: The Easy Play slot can be used separately from other slots for the purpose of inserting a disc you want to play immediately.

Digital Cinema Sound: This unit is equipped with DSP capabilities to enhance the listening experience.  You may select "Off", "VES A", "VES B", "VES TV", or "Virtual Semi Multi Dimensional":

  • "Off": Outputs all channels recorded on the disc being played.
  • "VES A" (Virtual Enhanced Surround A): Uses 3D sound imaging to create virtual rear speakers from the sound of the front speakers without actually having rear speakers; the "virtual" rear speaker sound appears to come from the sides and rear corners.
  • "VES B" (Virtual Enhanced Surround B): Uses 3D sound imaging to create virtual rear surround sound from the front speakers without actually having rear speakers; the "virtual" rear speaker sound appears to come from the rear.
  • "VES TV" (Virtual Enhanced Surround TV): Uses 3D sound imaging to create virtual rear speakers from the sound of the front speakers without actually having rear speakers. This mode is effective when the distance between the front speakers is short, such as built-in speakers on a stereo television.
  • "Virtual Semi Multi Dimensional": Uses 3D sound imaging to create virtual rear speakers from the sound of the front speakers without actually having rear speakers. This mode creates 5 sets of virtual speakers surrounding you at a 30 degree angle of elevation.

Track Selection: This allows you to set up the unit to automatically select the audio track with the highest number of channels on DVDs containing multiple audio formats. For instance, when the track selection feature has been set to AUTO and you play a disc that has a 2-channel PCM audio track and a 5.1 channel Dolby Digital audio track, the unit will automatically select the Dolby Digital track.

96kHz/24-bit Audio D/A Converter: This unit has a 96kHz/24-bit D/A converter which will allow it to play back video DVDs recorded with 96kHz/24-bit audio. When a 96kHz/24-bit disc is played, the player converts the sampling rate to 48kHz and outputs a 48kHz/16bit digital signal.

Component Video Output: In addition to the composite video outputs and the S-video outputs, this unit is equipped with a set of component video outputs. When connected to a television with a component video input, the component video output of this unit will provide picture color and detail that is improved relative to video from composite and S-video outputs.

Multi-Angle Function: This function allows you to choose the viewing angle of scenes which were shot from a number of different angles. Note: This function is limited to DVDs recorded with multiple camera angles.

Displaying Different Angles Simultaneously: With DVDs which have recordings in various angles you can display all the angles recorded on the disc on the same screen.

Strobe Play: You can display 9 consecutive sections of a DVD on a single screen, these can be seen in motion or in pause.

Title/Chapter and Track Viewer: Allows you to view pictures of titles, chapters or tracks on the disc on a single screen divided into 9 sections and start playback from the chosen title, chapter or track.

Resume Playback: Allows you to resume playback of a DVD or CD from where you last stopped, even if you turned power off (so long as power is not lost and the tray is not opened).

Flip: When playing a double-sided DVD, you can play side B without ejecting the disc to turn it over.

Pause: In DVD mode, the still picture is detailed and virtually noise-free.

Smooth Scan Picture Search using a 32-bit RISC Processor: This allows high quality viewing in high speed, slow speed, and frame by frame in both forward and reverse with almost no pixilization. The speeds are FF2 (30X); FF1 (10X), X2, Normal play, SLOW 1, and SLOW 2 (slower than SLOW 1). Any of these speeds may be selected in forward or reverse direction.

Jog/Shuttle Dial: The jog/shuttle dials on the unit and remote allow you to access the various picture search and to move frame by frame (jog/step function).

10-Bit 27MHz Video DAC: The 10-bit 27MHz video digital to analog converter reduces digital artifacts for a better picture.

Bit Rate Meter: The bit rate meter lets you monitor the average bit-rate level on a DVD.

Screen Saver Function: If left in pause or stop mode for 15 minutes, a screen saver image appears to prevent your television from becoming damaged.

Program Play: Up to 99 titles, chapters and tracks can be programmed and played in any order.

Shuffle Play: When playing a DVD, this unit plays the titles, chapters, or discs in the DVD folder in random order. When playing a Video CD or CD, this unit plays the tracks or the discs in the CD folder in random order. In addition, the player will shuffle titles or tracks selected in Program Play and play them in random order. 

Repeat Play: You can have the unit repeat a portion of a title, chapter or track by selecting the start and stop points for the section to be repeated (A-B repeat). When playing a DVD, this unit repeats all titles on the selected disc or all titles on all discs in the DVD folder. Also, the player repeats the current title on a disc or the current chapter. When playing a Video CD or CD, this unit repeats all tracks on the selected disc or all tracks on all discs in the CD folder. Also, the player repeats the current track on a disc. In addition, this unit repeats Program Play or Shuffle Play.

CD-Text and DVD Text: This unit can display the disc titles of CDs and DVDs encoded with text data. CD and DVD Text disc titles are shown on the display and a connected television.

Disc Memo: Up to 301 discs can be labeled with names of up to 16 characters; discs encoded with CD Text or DVD Text cannot be labeled. By using the Disc Explorer, you can indicate the genre of the disc so that you can sort the disc by the genre.

Bookmark: You can set up to 9 bookmarks per DVD or Video CD which allows you to directly access a specific portion of a DVD/Video CD.

Mega CD Changer Control:

  • You can control a second Sony 5, 50, 200 or 300 CD changer with this unit if it has a Control A1 (S-Link) or Control A1 II jack.
  • The 2nd Unit's RCA outputs must be connected to the RCA inputs of this unit, and the Control A1 jack of the CD changer must be connected to the Mega Control jack on this unit. When the units are connected this way, the controls on both units will function. You can control the normal CD functions (except audible search) including direct disc and track access.

Language Setup:

  • OSD (On-Screen Display): Selects on-screen display language (English, Spanish, French or Portuguese).
  • DVD Menu: Selects language for DVD menu (if the DVD isn't recorded with the selected language, another language is selected by the player).
  • Audio: Selects default DVD audio language.
  • Subtitle: Selects subtitle language or "audio follow" which changes subtitle language to match audio track.

Screen Setup:

  • TV Type: Selects 4:3 Letter Box, 4:3 Pan Scan or 16:9/4:3 Wide Mode for widescreen.
  • Screensaver: Turns screen saver feature On and Off.
  • Background: Selects background color or picture shown on the TV screen when the player is in stop mode or playing a CD. May be set to "Jacket Picture" (jacket picture displayed when disc has been recorded with one), "Picture Memory" (allows you to store a picture from a disc in memory for display), "Graphics" (preset graphics), blue or black.
  • Startup Screen: Selects startup image that appears when you turn the player on. May be set to "Standard" (the standard startup screen in the player's memory appears) or "Picture Memory" (your favorite picture appears in the startup screen).

Custom Setup:

  • Auto Play: Selects the setting of the Auto Play feature; may select "OFF", Timer (allows you to play back using an external audio timer), DEMO1 or DEMO2.
  • Dimmer: Sets the unit's display to Bright, Dark or Off.
  • Pause Mode (for DVD only): May be set to Auto (for jitter free display of a picture containing moving subjects) or Frame (for high resolution, jitter free display of a picture containing stationary subject).
  • Bookmark Reset: Allows you to reset all bookmarks.
  • Parental Control: Allows you to enter a 4 digit password to limit playback level on DVDs which support parental controls.
  • Playback Memory (DVD only): You can have the unit store the Audio, Subtitle, Angle, and Virtual 3D Surround settings for up to 301 discs.
  • Track Selection (DVD only): Can select Auto or Off. When set to Auto, the track with the highest number of channels is given priority and automatically played.

Audio Setup:

  • Audio Attenuation: Can select Off or On (lowers analog output level for matching to other audio equipment).
  • Audio Dynamic Range Control (DVD only): Can select Standard (slight compression), TV Mode (highest compression) or  wide range (no compression).
  • Downmix: Switches the mixing down methods for DVDs with Dolby Digital audio. May be set to "Dolby Surround" (when unit is connected to a Dolby Pro Logic receiver) or "Normal" (when used with a two-channel, non-Pro Logic, stereo).
  • Digital Out: May be set to On or Off. When set to On, the Dolby Digital and DTS settings (see below) can be made.
  • Dolby Digital: Determines the type of signal output by the digital outputs when a Dolby Digital encoded disc is being played. May be set to "D-PCM" (downmix PCM) or "Dolby Digital". When "D-PCM" is selected, the digital outputs provide a two-channel stereo PCM digital signal. When "Dolby Digital" is selected, the digital outputs will pass Dolby Digital signals without down mixing.
  • DTS: May be set to Off or On. When the digital outputs of this unit are connected to a component lacking a built-in DTS decoder, this should be set to Off.

Remote Control Functions

RMT-D123A Remote: The remote allows you to control all the features of the unit. A numeric keypad (0-9) allows you to directly access tracks, and the remote has a jog/shuttle dial. Many of the remote's buttons glow in the dark, but there is no back lighting.

The remote is precoded to operate the main volume control of the following receivers:

Sony Denon Kenwood Onkyo
Pioneer Sunsui Technics Yamaha

This remote will control the following TVs (controls Power; TV/Video, Volume +/-, Channel +/- and direct channel entry):

Sony    Akai AOC Centurion Coronado
Curtis-Mathis Daytron Emerson Fisher General Electric
Gold Star Hitachi JC Penney JVC KMC
Magnavox Marantz MGA/Mitsubishi NEC Panasonic
Philco Philips Pioneer Portland Quasar
Radio Shack RCA Sampo Sanyo Scott
Sears Sharp Sylvania Teknika Toshiba
Wards Yorx Zenith

Inputs and Outputs

Front Panel:

  • Key Board: PS/2 input for use with an optional keyboard

Rear Panel:

  • Audio/Video Out 1: Stereo RCA jacks, RCA composite video jack and S-video jack
  • Audio/Video Out 2: Stereo RCA jacks, RCA composite video jack and S-video jack
  • Component Video Output:  Component video jacks (3 RCA jacks, Y/Pb/Pr)
  • Audio In: Stereo RCA jacks; inputs for connection to a Mega Control compatible Sony CD changer
  • Coaxial Digital Output: Standard coaxial digital output
  • Toslink Digital Output: Standard Toslink digital output with plastic cover
  • S-Link (Control S In): Mono mini-jack for connection to compatible Sony products
  • Mega Control: Mono mini-jack for connection to compatible Sony CD changers


Jacket Picture Collection Disc: This DVD player employs Sony's Disc Explorer feature, which can display jacket pictures in the graphical user interface. Since most current DVDs do not have jacket pictures, Sony is including a free Video CD with jacket pictures from Columbia/TriStar Home Video. Once inserted into this unit, you can individually copy the provided jacket pictures to this model's Disc Explorer memory.

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