About the Kenwood KDC-MP438U
Kenwood's KDC-MP438U CD receiver offers enhanced connections along with MP3, WMA, and AAC file playback, so you get plenty of listening options right out of the box. The front-panel USB input lets you play files from your USB-equipped MP3 player or thumb drive, and you can plug your iPod® directly into the USB port too. In addition to the USB connection, the stereo offers a convenient front auxiliary input for your non-USB sources.
If you have children, you've probably wished for two stereos in your car. The KDC-MP438U's dual zone feature grants that request with its ability to play two different music sources at the same time. You can play your kids' iPod over the car's rear speakers, while you and your spouse listen to a CD on the front speakers.
Kenwood's Supreme audio processor enhances the clarity and depth of your music, particularly with MP3 files, tunes from your iPod, or other compressed music. A strong, onboard amp provides plenty of power to drive your speakers, while the 3-band equalizer lets you tweak the highs, mids, and lows to create the perfect sound curve for your car.
If you'd like to expand your system, you can add a Kenwood CD changer or satellite radio. Enjoy hands-free cell phone use in your car with Kenwood's optional Bluetooth® adapter. Three sets of preamp outputs make it easier to connect a full setup of external amps and subs.
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 or its optional iPod adapter.
- 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 (will not play Digital Rights-protected music files on disc)
- detachable face
- remote control
- dual-zone capability for playing different sources over the front & rear speakers
- System Q Sound Control (6 EQ curves and a 3-band equalizer)
- "Supreme" audio processing for better sound from your compressed music files
- speaker settings that allow you to tailor the sound to the size and type of speakers in your car
- System E's high- and low-pass filters
- 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 Bluetooth adapter and satellite radio (tuner, service subscription, and antenna required), HD Radio tuner ready
- inputs: front auxiliary and USB inputs
- outputs: three sets of preamp outputs
- compatible with most factory steering wheel audio controls (adapter required)
Other features and specs:
- warranty: 1 year
- Our 60-day money-back guarantee
- MFR # KDC-MP438U
What's in the box:
- AM/FM/CD/MP3/WMA/AAC/USB receiver with 10-amp fuse inserted into the chassis
- 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
- Back support screw
- Instruction Manual (English/Spanish/French)
- Warranty Card
- Kenwood Car Audio Passport card
- "Attention" note
Kenwood KDC-MP438U reviews
Thanks for submitting your review
More details on the Kenwood KDC-MP438U
Features & specs
|AUX Input||Front and Optional Rear|
|Backup Camera Input||No|
|Second Camera Input||No|
|Alexa Voice Control|
|Memory Card Slot||USB Memory|
|Satellite Radio Ready||Both|
|RMS Power (CTA-2006)||N/A|
|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||2.5 volts|
|Key Button Color||Red/Blue|
|Steering Wheel Control Compatible||Yes|
|Parts Warranty||1 Year|
|Labor Warranty||1 Year|
|FM Sensitivity||9.3 dBf|
|Radio Data System||No|
|Music File Playback|
Overview: The Kenwood KDC-MP438U AM/FM CD receiver features a detachable face, front auxiliary and USB input, three pairs of 2.5-volt preamp outputs, CD changer and Satellite radio controls and built-in iPod operation, as well as MP3/WMA/AAC 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.
Detachable Face: The unit features a single front loading CD face that detaches from the chassis to deter theft. 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.
AAC/MP3/WMA Playback: The KDC-MP438U can play MP3, WMA and AAC files with ID3 tag information recorded on 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/AAC playback, the unit displays any recorded ID3 Tag (Ver.1 or 2) 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.
AUX Input: The KDC-MP438U is equipped with a front panel 3.5mm minijack auxiliary input for connecting external portable audio devices such as an MP3 player or Tape walkman.
Auxiliary Display: The KDC-MP438U allows you to select the source type displayed when using the auxiliary input. You can choose from AUX, DVD, Portable, Game, Video or TV.
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 Preamp Outputs: The KDC-MP438U features front, rear and subwoofer preamp outputs. The Subwoofer preamp output can be turned On or Off and adjusted independently. 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 all fixed to the rear chassis of the headunit.
Built-In Amp Setting: If you are using external amplifiers to power all of your vehicle's speakers you can turn the unit's built-in amplifier off to enhance the player's preamp output quality.
Front and Rear High-Pass Filter: The KDC-MP438U features an independent High-Pass Crossover for the front and rear channels. You can adjust the high-pass crossover from through, 80, 100, 120, 150, or 180Hz. The "Through" selection is a full-range setting. This feature is very helpful when you have smaller-type speakers in the front and larger-type speakers installed in the rear of the vehicle.
Low-Pass Filter: The receiver features a built-in Low Pass Filter control for the preamp-output when the Subwoofer Output is "on". You can select from 60, 80, 120Hz or Through. The "Through" setting allows your external amplifier's crossover network to do all the filtering for your subwoofer.
Subwoofer Level: Once you have switched the Subwoofer Output to "on" you can independently control the subwoofer preamp output level from the CD receiver. You select levels between -15 to +15.
Subwoofer Phase: You can adjust the phase of the subwoofer output between 180-degrees (Reverse) or 0-degrees (Normal).
Rotary Volume Control: The CD receiver uses a 7-way rotary volume control that increases and decreases the volume of the stereo from 0 to 35. The rotary knob also controls other audio settings such as Balance, Fader, Bass, Mid, Treble and preset EQ settings.
Speaker Settings: The Speaker Setting function tailors the System Q Sound Control settings according to the type of speakers in your vehicle. You may select a Speaker Setting of "SP Off" (flat), "SP OEM" (for OEM factory speaker systems), "SP 6x9/6" (for systems with 6" and 6"x9" speakers), or "SP 5/4" (for systems with 4" and 5" speakers).
Note: The Speaker Setting affects the bass, midrange, and treble values of the System Q presets. The speaker setting should be selected first.
System Q Sound Control: Six EQ curves are preset into memory, allowing you to recall the best preset EQ curve for different types of music. Each preset has its own level settings for bass (100Hz), midrange (1kHz), and treble (10kHz). The 6 preset curves with their respective bass, mid, and treble levels are as follows:
- Rock: Bass +6, Mid +1, Treble +2
- Pops: Bass +3, Mid +2, Treble +6
- Easy: Bass +6, Mid 0, Treble -2
- Top 40: Bass +3, Mid +1, Treble +8
- Jazz: Bass +5, Mid +2, Treble +2
- Natural (Flat): Bass 0, Mid 0, Treble 0
Note: The above values reflect the System Q settings when the Speaker Setting function is turned off. When the Speaker Settings are selected, the System Q level settings are different.
Bass/Treble/Mid Control: The KDC-MP438U features independent Bass, Treble and Midrange control. You can adjust each one from -8 to +8db. The bass frequency is adjusted at 100 Hz, the treble frequency is adjusted at 10 kHz and the midrange frequency is adjusted at 1 kHz.
Loudness: The Loudness feature compensates for low and high tones during low volume. You can turn this feature either on or off. Only the low tone is compensated for when the tuner is selected as a source.
Source Tone Memory: This feature allows you to store System Q bass, middle and treble tone settings for each source (CD, FM, AM, and Aux).
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.
Text/Title Scroll: The KDC-MP438U will display CD text, Audio file text and Satellite radio text. You can turn the scrolling feature "on" to scroll longer titles across the screen.
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-MP438U allows you to eject your disc for 10 minutes after switching off the vehicles engine.
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.
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.
Tel Mute: The KDC-MP438U 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.
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 unit features a large 14-segment Fluorescent display that uses a black background and blue characters that are easy to read.
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.
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.
Remote Control: The KDC-MP438U 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. It is powered by 2 "AA" batteries (supplied). The dimensions of the remote are: L = 5.362", W = 1.962", D = 1.115".
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-MP438U has a "steering remote control" lead on the back panel. When used with the optional SWI-JACK interface (item number 127SWIJACK), 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.
USB Port: The Kenwood KDC-MP438U features a front panel 2.0 USB type-A port that is hidden behind a sliding cover. The USB port enables connection and control of a portable USB mass-storage class device. 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-MP438U 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-MP438U's front-panel USB port also acts as an iPod high-speed direct connection when used with the optional Kenwood USB Direct Connection Cable (113iP100, sold separately) or the USB/iPod cable that came with your iPod. Using either cable allows you to connect, control, and charge the following iPod models with the KDC-MP438U: iPod nano (1st/2nd/3rd/4th generation), iPod video (5th generation), iPod classic (80/120/160GB), iPod touch (1st/2nd generation), and iPhone/iPhone 3G. You should update your iPod with the latest software version from Apple's website before connecting it to the KDC-MP438U. When your iPod is connected to the KDC-MP438U, the iPod's controls will be disabled and you will need to operate your iPod through the KDC-MP438U's controls.
Note: All other iPod models not mentioned above are not compatible with this unit.
Satellite Radio Ready: There are several options for connecting an optional XM or SIRIUS Satellite Radio receiver to this receiver:
- XM Satellite Radio: To receive XM Satellite Radio, you can connect the optional CNP2000UC XM Mini Tuner and the CNP-KEN1 Kenwood adapter cable (package item number 700XMKEN1).
- SIRIUS Satellite Radio: To receive SIRIUS Satellite Radio, you can connect the optional SIRIUS Universal Vehicle Tuner (607SCC1) and the optional Kenwood Sirius Satellite Radio Interface (113KCASR50).
- Auxiliary Input: A portable satellite
radio receiver, such as the Delphi SkyFi3 or SIRIUS Sportster, can be
connected to the head unit via the auxiliary input or a Kenwood Auxiliary
Input Adapter, such as the CA-C1AX, CA-C2AX, or KCA-S220A.
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 (item # 113KTCHR20), 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. 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 http://www.kenwood.com/bt/information/ 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 or an MD 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.
Rear Auxiliary Input "Ready": The unit already features a front 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 (item 113CAC1AX) 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 (item 113KCAS220) 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 Ext, TV, DVD, Video, Game, or Portable.