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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I'm looking for a double-din head unit with USB for my 2003 Mazda Protege5. The only real candidates I've found are the JVC KW-GX700 and Kenwood DPX502 (assuming the 502 ever gets released). I guess the DPX501 is still available, but I'd probably hold out for the 502 if I decide to go with Kenwood.


It's been a long time since I've looked at car audio gear. What is current opinion about general quality of JVC vs. Kenwood? The units seem about the same in terms of features, but the Kenwood is quite a bit more expensive. In fact, the JVC seems suspiciously inexpensive given the feature set. Is there enough of a quality difference between JVC and Kenwood to justify Kenwood's higher price?


Anyone know of any other good double-din USB head units in the $300 range?
 

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why double din? get a dash kit and you won't need a double din.

as far as either goes, i have always been a kenwood HU fanatic. i just bought my sister a jvc and installed two others in friends' cars and have had zero issues with either. both decks appear very similar, but kenwood offers music management (mp3 mgmt) via your computer. i have it, but have never used it. it supposed to organize all mp3 files by category to make locating a specific song(s) easier. there are also advanced user controls for hi/low amp bypass etc.

if you don't plan on expanding your system, i would go with the jvc. well, actually, i would buy a single din unit and use a dash kit. good luck with your purchase...
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Thanks for the reply. I would just visually prefer a double-din as opposed to a dash kit with a cubby hole. The Protege5 already has an open compartment in the console and I'd rather not have a second one.


I don't plan on adding any external amps or other gear, so I think I'll take your advice and go with the JVC. Thanks again.
 

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Anyone have any info on when the Kenwood DPX-502 might be available. It been up on their site for a while and the 302 is available.


Also, anyone have any opinions on how well the Kenwood head units work with an iPod? How is the speed and control?


Mike
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
I read in another forum that it's supposed to be available by the end of the month, but I have no idea where that info came from or if it's credible.

http://www.ls1gto.com/forums/showthread.php?p=2753654


I've been holding off on my upgrade just to see how the Kenwood is priced if/when it ever gets released. I have a feeling it's probably going to be $75-100 more than the JVC, in which case I'm not sure it's worth it.


Anyone seen any review or opinions on the JVC KW-GX700? It's been available at Crutchfield for a couple weeks, but no reviews yet.
 

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The Kenwood dpx502 will probably be more that the JVC, the dpx501 is on the Crutchfield website but currently listed as not available, probably a good sign that the dpx502 is not far off.


You could order the dpx501 a week or two ago, and if I remember correctly it was about 320.
 

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What is the difference from the DPX-502 to the DPX-302? I am in the same situation with the Double Din, it just wont look right in the dash otherwise. I am definitely going Kenwood, plan on getting the bluetooth and sirius radio, and maybe throw in the HD Radio as well. Any feedback would be appreciated.
 

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rearding double din i am waiting for my Valor NVG-670w with navigation, bluetooth, ipod cable and sattelite antenna all included. The price might be a little up there but compared to other double din with navigation this is the best price i can find. what attracted me more is the included bluetooth and ipod connector which is optional to alot of units out there.


Kenwood is much better if you ask me.
 

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I had the JVC KW-XG700 for about a week. It was a nice unit. I did have one problem with it though which was enough for me to send it back.


When I left the flash drive plugged in and the XG700 playing from the flash drive then turned the ignition off, it was as if the XG700 just kept on playing. Once I got back to the car and turned the ignition on the XG700 would be several songs down the list from where I left it (the number of songs down was equal to the amount of time I was gone and the car off).


If I press the power button on the XG700 to turn it off or if I change to a different source (radio, CD or aux) this strange continuous playing problem doesn't happen. It only happens if I leave the source at USB and don't turn the XG700 off with the power button (I like having my head unit power off when I turn the ignition off and on when I turn the ignition on so I usually don't bother turning them off with their power button).


I've tried different flash drives and even a card reader w/ a SD card and it happens with anything I plug into the USB port.
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
They both seem like decent units, but the more I research about USB head units, the more hesitant I am to get one. It seems like they all have problems and major limitations.


All of them seem to have one or more issues with USB device support, startup/scan times, remembering song positions, etc.


And as for limitations, take playlists for example. As far as I can tell there's not a single USB head unit out there that supports any kind of playlist functionality (for example, something like a Winamp style .m3u playlist). So to get that functionality, you have put all your files into "playlist" folders. Which is inefficient if you have the same song in multiple playlists. Also is problematic if you want to have album art on the USB device.


I think it's probably going to be another generation or two before the USB units are really ready for prime time.
 

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After installing a couple hundred of each I get a pretty good idea of their build quality. Not that either is bad but the kenwoods are just more solid in construction and likely to hold up better over time. My first deck was a JVC and it did pretty good for what I paid. Aesthetically I've always preferred kenwood over JVC.


Unless one unit has a distinct functional/aesthetic advantage over the other I would make the decision based on price.
 
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