About the Clarion CX501
Why settle for a smaller receiver when you've got room for more? Clarion's CX501 CD receiver strikes a handsome pose in your double-DIN dash opening, and you can tailor its look to your vehicle's interior by choosing from 728 possible illumination colors. Throw in iPod® and iPhone® control, built-in Bluetooth® for hands-free calls, plus a 2-line display, and you're ready for the open road.
It's never a good idea to fumble for your phone while you're driving. Built-in Bluetooth lets you conduct calls without taking your hands off the wheel, as you talk naturally and hear your caller over your speakers. After initial pairing, the CX501 connects to your phone automatically every time you turn on your car, so you can leave your phone in your pocket or purse and concentrate on driving. Plus if your phone or another device supports it, you can stream music straight into the stereo.
Great for your iPod or iPhone
When you plug your player into this receiver's USB slot, you can control your iPod with the large, central control knob, plus view song info as it scrolls across the 2-line display. You'll enjoy sound quality that's superior to plugging into an auxiliary input, and your player stays charged while you drive.
Enjoy great sound
You'll find some useful tools for adjusting the powerful sound delivered by the Clarion's built-in amplifier. The versatile Magna Bass EX bass boost will add depth to your sound without getting muddy. The 3-band parametric equalizer rules over the simple tone controls found on most factory radios, offering pinpoint control over the highs, mids, and lows. Three sets of high-power, 4-volt preamp outputs send a clean signal to aftermarket amps and subs. A built-in low-pass filter lets you control the character of your bass, while a high-pass filter trims the extreme low bass out of your front and rear speakers so they play more efficiently.
Use the convenient front auxiliary input to plug in a Dock & Play satellite radio, an MP3 player, or any other portable audio player. You can also play your store-bought and recordable CDs, plus discs you've loaded with MP3 and WMA files.You can add an HD Radio tuner to dial in the great sound quality and expanded programming choices of participating AM/FM stations.
Want to keep your car's steering wheel audio controls?
In most vehicles, you can use an adapter (not included) to connect your vehicle's steering wheel controls to this Clarion stereo. Connect a few wires, then program the adapter for your particular car and the Clarion, and you'll retain the convenience of your steering wheel controls. Check the "Accessories" tab for compatible adapters.
Bluetooth note: Use of this receiver's Bluetooth features will depend upon your phone's Bluetooth capabilities. Learn more in our article explaining Bluetooth profiles.
iPod note: If you're going to use your iPod with this receiver, be sure to check "Details" for specific iPod model compatibility with this receiver.
- CD receiver with AM/FM tuner
- built-in amplifier (21 watts RMS CEA-2006/50 peak x 4 channels)
- built-in Bluetooth for hands-free calling and music streaming
- plays CDs, CD-Rs, and CD-RWs (including discs loaded with MP3 and WMA files)
- 2-line display with 728 possible illumination colors
- remote control
- BeatEQ with three preset tone settings and 3-band parametric EQ
- high- and low-pass filters
- compatible with Clarion HD Radio tuner
- inputs: front-panel auxiliary input, front-panel USB input
- outputs: 6-channel preamp outputs (4-volt front, rear, sub)
What's in the box:
- Double-DIN AM/FM CD receiver (with two transports screws installed)
- Trim ring
- Wiring harness (with in-line 15A fuse on constant power wire)
- RCB-176 IR wireless remote
- CR2025 3V Lithium battery
- 8 Counter-sunk phillips-head screws
- 8 Hex-head bolts (with a flat-washer attached to each one)
- 8 Plastic rings
- 2 Self-adhesive gaskets
- Owner's Manual (Eng/Fre/Spa)
- Installation/Wire Connection Guide (Eng/Fre/Spa)
- Warranty sheet (USA/Canada)
Clarion CX501 reviews
Thanks for submitting your review
More details on the Clarion CX501
Features & specs
|Backup Camera Input||No|
|Second Camera Input||No|
|Alexa Voice Control|
|Memory Card Slot||USB memory|
|Satellite Radio Ready||No|
|RMS Power (CTA-2006)||21 watts|
|RMS Power (Manufacturer)||---|
|Peak Output||50 watts|
|RMS Power Bandwidth||20-20kHz|
|Sub Preamp Outputs||Yes|
|Switchable Rear Preamp Outputs||No|
|Navigation App Compatible (iOS)|
|Navigation App Compatible (Android)|
|Preamp Voltage||4 volts|
|Key Button Color||Variable|
|Steering Wheel Control Compatible||Adapter required|
|Parts Warranty||1 Year|
|Labor Warranty||1 Year|
|FM Sensitivity||11 dBf|
|Radio Data System||No|
|Music File Playback||MP3, WMA|
2-DIN Chassis: The Clarion CX501 has a 2-DIN chassis (also known as "Double DIN" or size DD), and will fit in many vehicles with a large dash opening. The unit can be ISO-mounted using your vehicle's factory radio brackets and the supplied hardware. There is also an optional custom double-DIN sleeve (0202DBKT, sold separately) available for this unit that will allow you to mount the CX501 in a custom 4" opening. As always, please consult the Crutchfield Car Selector to verify fit with your vehicle.
728-Variable Color Illumination: The CX501 is equipped with a high visibility, 728 Variable-Color Illumination LCD that allows numbers and characters to be displayed clearly in all lighting conditions. You can select the exact color you want for the head unit's display and button illumination to match your car's instrument panel or personal preference. You can adjust the display contrast to match the angle of installation of this unit between 1 to 16.
Large Rotary Control Knob: The unit's large 3-way rotary control knob, combined with the ergonomically symmetrical design of the unit, helps to provide equally comfortable operation from the driver side or passenger side. Its intuitiveness and natural feel minimizes stress for the operator and contributes to driving safety.
Illumination Dimmer: The receiver's display automatically dims to a preset brightness when the vehicle's headlights are turned on. The wiring harness includes an orange/white lead that should be connected to the vehicle's parking light circuit in order for the dimmer feature to operate.
Screen Saver: This unit is provided with a Screen Saver function which allows you to show various kinds of patterns and characters in the operation status indication area of the display in a random order. You can turn this function on or off. If the button operation is performed with the screen saver function "On", the operation display corresponding to the button operation is shown for about 30 seconds and then the display returns to the screen saver display.
Anti-Theft System: Since the CX501 does not have detachable face, this unit features Clarion's Anti-Theft System (CATS). CATS allows you to create a 4-digit code that must be entered to operate the unit if it is ever disconnected from your vehicle's battery.
Anti-Theft Indicator: The red Anti-theft indicator on the unit's front-panel is a function for preventing theft. When the CX501 and your vehicle is turned completely off, this indicator will blink to deter theft.
MOSFET Amplifier: The Clarion CX501 is equipped with a MOSFET amplifier. Compared to conventional power supplies, the MOSFET amplification circuit is smaller and more efficient, and it delivers increased power with less distortion and absolutely zero on/off switching noise. More power means louder and cleaner music at higher volumes because you're not pushing the limits of the amplification circuit.
CEA2006 Compliant: The power specifications for the CX501 are compliant with the CEA2006 Mobile Amplifier Power Testing and Measurement standards from the Consumer Electronics Association (CEA). These standards were developed as a way to equitably compare power specs from model to model and between manufacturers. The power output specs for the CX501 are as follows:
- CEA2006 Specs: 21 watts RMS x 4 channels (at 4 ohms, 20Hz-20kHz, 1% THD-N)
- Maximum Power Output: 50 watts x 4 channels (180 watts total)
BeatEQ: In addition to providing 3 preset equalization patterns (Bass Boost, Impact, and Excite), Clarion's BeatEQ lets you freely customize the level and range of the bass, midrange and treble portions of each pattern. You can tune the sound to your liking, depending on the category of music, for a more fulfilling listening experience.
- Bass Boost: Bass is emphasized +/-3.
- Impact: Bass and treble are emphasized +/-3.
- Excite: Bass, midrange, and treble are emphasized +/-3.
- Custom: Adjusts the bass, midrange, and treble
- Bass: You can set the effected bass frequency to 50Hz, 100Hz, or 200Hz and the Q-factor to 0.7, 1, 1.4, or 2
- Midrange: You can set the effected midrange frequency to 500Hz, 1.0kHz, or 2.0kHz and the Q-factor to 0.7, 1, 1.4, or 2
- Treble: The effected treble frequency can be set to 5kHz, 10kHz, or 15kHz, and the Q-factor to 0.7, 1, 1.4, or 2
- Off (Flat): Bass, midrange, and treble are set to 0.
Magna Bass EX (Extend): The Magna Bass Extend feature does not adjust the low frequencies like the normal sound adjustment function, but emphasizes the deep bass frequencies to provide you with a dynamic sound. This circuit boosts bass at an ultra-low frequency of about 50Hz, creating a rich, deep, defined bass rather than the muddy, booming bass of a standard loudness control. What is more, boost levels are dependent on the system volume, resulting in balanced system response and dynamic bass reproduction.
6ch/4V RCA Output: The Clarion CX501 features 6ch/4V RCA line level outputs (Front/Rear/Sub). The head unit is able to connect a full range of speakers, ranging from tweeter and mid-range to subwoofers. The full set of line outputs allows integration into a wide range of potential systems, and is ready to support future system expansions.
Subwoofer Controls: The non-fading subwoofer preamp output features an independent level control (+/-6) and phase adjustment (normal/reverse).
Built-in Crossovers: The Clarion CX501 is equipped with built-in low-pass and high-pass crossovers.
- Low-Pass Subwoofer Filter: The Low-Pass Filter (LPF) for the subwoofer preamp output (when activated) will send only the low frequency range through the preamp outputs to ensure superb performance with a connected subwoofer. The low-pass filter can be set to 60Hz, 90Hz, 120Hz, or Through (full-range).
- High-Pass Filter: The CX501 features a High-Pass Filter (HPF) for the unit's front & rear channels, via speaker-output or preamp-output. You can adjust the high-pass filter from 60Hz, 90Hz, 120Hz, or Through (full-range). The HPF prevents low bass notes from distorting your front & rear speakers. The high-pass filter setting effects both the front & rear channels of the head unit.
Beep: The in-dash head unit provides an audible beep to confirm button operation. This function can be turned On or Off.
AM/FM Tuner: The Clarion CX501 is equipped with a built-in AM/FM tuner offering 18 FM station presets and 6 AM station presets. Stations can be stored manually or automatically.
Instant Station Recall (ISR): You can store one radio station in Instant Station Recall (ISR) memory and recall it from any mode (except Power Off). Once the ISR station has been recalled, you cannot tune to another station without first disengaging the ISR function. You can, however, switch to another source.
Preset Scan: Preset scan receives the stations stored in the unit's preset memory in order. This function is useful when searching for a desired preset station.
Local Seeking: When Local seeking is turned "On", only those radio stations with strong radio signal can be received.
HD Radio Ready: With an optional Clarion THD301 HD Radio tuner (020THD301, 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. The add-on HD Radio tuner includes iTunes Tagging capability, so if you hear a song on the radio that you like, you can tag it to download later from the iTunes Store.
Note: Right now there are about 2,000 radio stations broadcasting using digital HD Radio technology in the U.S. To find HD Radio stations in your area, visit the HD Radio website (HDRadio.com).
Disc Compatibility: The unit features a single disc player that will playback CD-Audio, CD-Text, and finalized CD-R/CD-RW audio discs.
MP3/WMA Playback: The unit can play MP3 (8-320 kbps/VBR) and WMA (5-320 kbps) files recorded onto CD-R and CD-RW discs using ISO9660 Level 1 or 2, Joliet, Romeo, or Apple ISO formats. The player can recognize up to 8 hierarchical levels and 256 files per folder, with a maximum of 999 total files per USB device. This unit is compatible with, and will display MP3 and WMA ID3 tags up to 32 characters.
Disc-In-Play-Function: This feature allows you to turn the power to the unit "on" and start playing the disc automatically when the disc is inserted even if the unit is not powered up, as long as the ignition key is turned to the "on" or "acc" position.
Folder Select: This function allows you to select a folder containing MP3/WMA files and start playing from the first track in the folder.
Playback Functions: The CX501 provides Repeat, Random, & Scan playback functions.
- Scan Play: This function allows you to locate and play the first 10 seconds of all the tracks recorded on a CD or the first 10 seconds of the first track of all the folders on an MP3/WMA disc.
- Repeat Play: This function allows you to play the current track on a disc repeatedly or play a file currently being played in a MP3/WMA folder repeatedly.
- Random Play: This function allows you to play all tracks recorded on a disc or in a folder in a random order.
Last Position Memory: If you turn off the unit while a disc is playing, it will resume playback at the stopping point when it is turned on again.
Auto Reload: When a CD is ejected and left sticking out of the CD slot for 15 seconds, the unit automatically reloads the CD to protect if from damage.
Mounting: For proper CD playback you must install the unit within 30-degrees of horizontal.
USB Port: The front-panel USB (type-A) port allows you to connect and play USB (1.1/2.0) Mass Storage devices loaded with MP3 and WMA files. MP3 files with a bit rate from 8-320 kbps and WMA files with a bit rate from 5-320 kbps that are formatted with FAT will be supported. The head unit can recognize up to 256 files per folder and 999 total files. Titles up to 64 characters can be displayed while in USB mode. The CX501 offers the following playback operation of your USB Mass Storage device - Play, Pause, Track selection, Fast-forward/backward, Scan play, Repeat play, Random play, and Folder selection. This unit will also charge you connected USB device when the receiver is turned on.
Note: The Clarion USB extension cable (020CCA755, sold separately) can be used to connected your USB flash-memory device. Copy-protected WMA files cannot be played on this unit.
iPod/iPhone Direct: The Clarion CX501 allows you to connect your iPod/iPhone to the head unit's front-panel USB port using your iPod's USB/Dock cable for audio playback, control, and charging of your iPod/iPhone. This head unit also supports the display of title information transmitted from your iPod/iPhone.
- USB Connection: The USB connection allows your iPod/iPhone's stored music to be loaded instantly to the head unit and sound quality to be maximized through the head unit's 1-bit D/A converter, allowing for a Signal to Noise ratio up to 92dB.
- Audio Playback: The Clarion head unit supports audio playback of music files stored on your iPod or iPhone. iPod Video can be viewed by connecting the CX501 to an external universal monitor with RCA video input and connecting a compatible iPod/iPhone via the optional Clarion CCA748 cable (020CCA748, sold separately).
- Music Navigation: The head unit lets you search music for playback from your iPod/iPhone by category (Playlist, Artist, Album, Song, Genre, or Composer). You can select between categories by using the head unit's numbered preset buttons 1-6. Once you have selected a category, you can search through the music in that particular category alphabetically. You can also control the following playback functions of your iPod/iPhone: Skip Tracks, Fast-forward/backward, Pause, Repeat, and Random. You can also choose to control your iPod/iPhone through its clickwheel or touchscreen.
- Information Display: The head unit will display your iPod/iPhone's music file information, including - Track number, Elapsed playing time, Song Title, Artist Name, and Album Label.
- Charging: While connected and the ignition switch is set to ACC or ON, the head unit's USB connection will power and charge your iPod/iPhone. If your iPod/iPhone has no initial battery charge, then the unit will not recognize it.
Note: If you have an iPod nano (7th gen), iPod touch (5th gen), or iPhone 5/5C/5S; use the Lighting-to-USB cable that came with your Apple device to connect to the head unit.
iPod/iPhone Compatibility Chart: The Clarion CX501 is "Made for iPod/iPhone" compatible and supports the following iPod/iPhone model features (as of 11/13/2013):
|Apple Device||Generation||Tested Version||Media Type||Control Type||Display Type||Bluetooth||Charge|
|Audio||Video||Head Unit||iPod/App||Artist/Song Text||Track Info||Phone||Audio|
Note: Apple iPod/iPhone software updates may change functionality results. If you download a newer software version, you may need to reset the head unit and your iPod/iPhone to regain functionality. If this doesn't work, you may need to wait until a newer software update is available.
Auxiliary Input: The CX501 feature a front panel 3.5mm auxiliary input so you connect your external portable audio player or portable satellite radio receiver to this head unit. You can set the Auxiliary input sensitivity level to Low, Mid, or High to match the volume output of your connected external audio device.
Bluetooth Wireless Technology: The Clarion CX501 is equipped with built-in Bluetooth. Bluetooth wireless technology enables voice and data to be sent via a short-distant digital radio link (2.4GHz) up to approximately 33 feet. Bluetooth (ver.2.0+EDR) compatibility provides the ability to wirelessly connect Bluetooth enabled mobile phones and digital audio players to this head unit. The Clarion CX501 allows for hands-free mobile phone communication as well as audio streaming of files through your car stereo system.
Bluetooth Profiles: The following Bluetooth (ver.2.0+EDR) Profiles are supported by the Clarion CX501.
- HFP (Hands-Free Profile): Hands-free communication with your Bluetooth enabled cellular phone in the vehicle (incoming/outgoing calls supported).
- HSP (Headset Profile): Provides support for Bluetooth headsets to be used with mobile phones.
- OPP (Object Push Profile): Phonebook transfer from your Bluetooth enabled mobile phone to the head unit.
- PBAP (Phone Book Access Profile): Phonebook access from your Bluetooth enabled cell-phone to the head unit.
- A2DP (Advanced Audio Distribution Profile): Music streaming from your Bluetooth enabled phone or audio player to the head unit.
- AVRCP (Audio/Video Remote Control Profile): Basic music playback control of your Bluetooth enabled phone or audio player from the head unit.
Pairing: Your Bluetooth enabled mobile phone or digital audio player must be paired with the Clarion CX501 before initial Bluetooth operation. You can register up to five Bluetooth enabled cell-phones with the Clarion in-dash head unit (only one paired phone can be used at a time). Not all Bluetooth enabled mobile cell-phones and devices will be compatible with the CX501. Visit Clarion Bluetooth Support for list of current compatible cell-phones.
Hands-Free Communication (HFP/HSP/OPP/PBAP): The Clarion CX501's built-in wireless Bluetooth interface supports hands-free operation of your Bluetooth enabled mobile phone. You can listen to phone calls through your car's audio system and talk through the head unit's integrated microphone. The Clarion CX501 can retrieve phonebook contacts, receive calls, and dial calls from your Bluetooth enabled mobile phone.
- Answering Calls: During an incoming call, the caller's phone number will be seen on the unit's LCD and a ring-tone will be heard through your car stereo speakers. You can adjust the unit's ring volume from 1-10. You can then manually answer the incoming call from the head unit's front-panel controls. You can also set the unit to automatically answer an incoming call within 5 seconds.
- Making A Call: There are 4 ways to make an outgoing call from the
Clarion in-dash head unit.
- Direct Dial: Outgoing calls can be made be entering telephone numbers (0-9, *, #, +) directly via the car stereo's rotary control knob.
- Phonebook: You can search for contact names in your mobile phone's phonebook from the Clarion CX501 and then make your call. The head unit can store up to 500 contact numbers.
- Call Log: You can also make a call by searching your mobile phone's call history (Received/Dialed/Missed) from the Clarion CX501.
- Redial: You can redial the last phone number dialed on your mobile phone from the Clarion CX501.
Integrated Microphone: The Clarion CX501 features an integrated front-panel microphone to carry on your side of a conversation during a Bluetooth phone call. You can adjust the microphone gain (1-5) for each paired mobile phone device. There is no port for adding an external microphone.
Audio Streaming (A2DP/AVRCP): The Clarion CX501's built-in wireless Bluetooth interface also supports audio streaming so you can enjoy music streamed from your Bluetooth enabled mobile phone or digital audio player through your car stereo system. The CX501 offers Play/Pause, Track Selection, and Fast-Forward/Reverse playback functions of your streamed music.
Wireless Remote: The CX501 comes supplied with the RCB-176 infrared wireless remote control for wireless operation of the CD player. The remote operates off of a single CR2025 Lithium Cell 3-volt battery.
Steering Wheel Remote Compatibility: The head unit features an OEM steering wheel remote control input on the rear of the unit that lets you keep your vehicle's factory radio steering wheel remote controls when used with an optional steering wheel audio control adapter (sold separately). Please consult Crutchfield's Outfit My Car to see if your vehicle is compatible.
The Clarion CX501 replaces these items
9 questions already asked