Kenwood DNX-7200 & KCA-BT200 review

In 2008, a 6.95-inch touchscreen in a 1997 Toyota MR-2 T-bar felt like the future..

For car modifiers and geeks, the DNX even features relay outputs – two of them – so you can control devices from the head unit with either switched or pulsed control. Want to switch on your foglights from the radio? Or neons… or control a garage door opener, or for true James-Bond style silliness, a smoke machine in the rear of the car? The option is open to you right here. Fitted in a suitable vehicle for example, the relay outputs could be used to switch on rear entertainment options such as a motorised screen.

Kenwood DNX-7200 Setup

More information on available options will be added later, so check back.

Overall, the DNX-7200 is fantastic value for money for the class of device, but critically also crosses the boundary where it can be justified even compared to lower-cost, separate components. With a typical street price coming in at around £680, with some places offering bundles at that with the BT100 or iPod video cable, it’s not significantly more expensive than a good quality headunit with similar audio capability, a satellite navigation unit with European coverage, and a good hands-free kit. The initial retail price appears to have been around £1400 typically, so it has halved in price and now competes below many similar systems. Halfords, for example, sell an LG-branded single DIN system for £899 – if you are limited to single DIN space, Kenwood market a similar version of the DNX-7200. The iPod control – especially the video playback integration – is dramatically better than any other system I’ve used for overall speed and functionality.

Security is my major concern with such an obvious device. Whilst it’s clear that most Japanese cars have their stereos bolted in, making removal considerably harder than a simple “pull it out of the dash” grab, the damage done by the average thief learning this would probably outweigh the cost of the unit. The front panel cannot be detached, and the unit cannot be guaranteed to sit flush with the dashboard. Kenwood provide a PIN-based security code system that disables the unit, but knowing that someone having stolen the device (and probably damaged your car in the process) won’t be able to use it is little comfort. If you cannot make it look like it’s a factory Nav display, it’s worth having a go at making a blanking plate fascia for it. However, DO remember to enable the security settings if you have any concerns, and inform your insurance company of the fitment of such a system in case your audio coverage is insufficient.

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.