Kenwood DDX8905S Review – Is it good enough?

Kenwood DDX8905S head unit

Mind-blowing audio after the install…

There’s one secret for having a great system. You need to give more power to the speakers. This has happened time and time again by changing the head unit the music got a lot better.

The new aftermarket stereos deliver more power to the speakers. With more power, the performance increases. If you don’t want to, you don’t have to invest thousands in speakers and subs.

This is the reason why I’ve written this Kenwood DDX8905S review. I will make a promise to you. By reading this review, you will know everything good and bad with this head unit. After that, you can make the right decision.

The Kenwood DDX8905S is part of the Excelon family.

Here’s a quick preview on what’s coming next. With all the bells and whistles, the new-gen car stereos are slower to boot. I mean, I don’t want to wait for 20-30s whenever I want to backup. Luckily it’s not the case with this Kenwood. It’s a fast starter.

It comes with every popular entertainment option. Starting with standard radio, CD/DVD player going on with streaming apps, and SiriusXM ready option.

It supports both Apple Carplay and Android Auto though you need to connect to a USB cable. Also dual phone connection is supported thanks to the built-in Bluetooth.

Kenwood brings its A-game when it comes to personalization.

Now let’s get this Kenwood DDX8905S review started.

Here’s the bird’s eye view for this head unit.

Pros
  • Good anti-glare screen
  • Quick loading stereo
  • Easy to use and customizable
Cons
  • Enduring the 10s disclaimer message
  • It feels overcrowded

Who is the Kenwood DDX8905S for?

This Kenwood unit targets the following customers. Those who want to make hands-free calling efortless. You can use this stereo with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto.

Secondly, it’s for those people who want entertainment. It has everything you need from radio to streaming apps like Spotify and Pandora.

What can the Kenwood DDX8905S do for you?

My shortest answer would be of sound quality. It’s mind-blowing what Kenwood managed to achieve with this head unit.

It made my speakers sing.

The major selling point for this double din unit is the support for both Apple CarPlay and Android Auto. At the moment, you can only connect through a USB cord.

During your commute, you can enjoy Siri and Google Assistant taking care of you. With these two assistants, you can make hands-free calls. Not only that, you can get texts read, and you can reply to them without touching your phone.

One of the issues people had with the connection was that they used cheap USB cords. You will be in a world of pain if you don’t use quality ones.

Since we’re talking about safety, the Kenwood DDX8905S head unit has two video inputs. You can connect a dash cam and a rear-view camera. I don’t have to tell you the importance of these. The package doesn’t include them, so you have to buy them separately.

Let’s talk about entertainment for a second, as you have read before it comes with CD/DVD player and standard FM/AM radio. It has a lot more to offer. If you like CD quality radios, then you’re in luck because it comes with HD radio. We shouldn’t forget that this unit is SiriusXM ready.

It has one of the best anti-glare screens I’ve seen.

The last thing on my list is the dual USB ports. You can connect your phone to one of them, and the second one can house an iPod or memory stick.

Kenwood DDX8905S shortcomings

For some reason, this is the most read part of my review. So I won’t disappoint. As you know, all head units have their flaws. As a reviewer, it’s my civic duty to point it out to them. Once you know them, you can decide if this is the best one for you.

What’s with the disclaimer?

When you start the car for 10s, you have to read the warning message. I’ve seen it so many times that I can tell you backward. Sadly there’s no way around it.

The menu is not user-friendly. It feels too crowded. For this reason alone, I like JVC’s design. Compare that screen to this, and you see the difference. JVC is aired out and easy to use. This is crammed to the brim.

I’ve mentioned this in other reviews that the Weblink is buggy. If you don’t have anything else to use, please don’t try YouTube with it. It happened to me many times because of habit I clicked it, and the system crashed.

After a crash, it takes 15-20 minutes to link up. Yes, you read it right; it takes minutes, not seconds.

Android Auto is buggy as well. Finally, there was a new firmware update and ironed out most of the kinks.

For this price, I was expecting more. Maybe they could’ve included a built-in GPS. The video is of low quality that should’ve been upgraded.

My last issue with the Kenwood DDX8905S car stereo is manual dimming. Since when are we going back in time? Most modern head units have automatic dimming. It’s not that hard to implement.

This is the list of flaws that Kenwood has. Are you still with me?

Maybe you’re looking for an alternative?

How To Get The Most Out Of Kenwood DDX8905S?

The first step is obviously to install. I recommend that this should be handled by a pro. Wasting hours on end to wire something is not my idea of fun. It’s a real time saver for me.

Before you get to the installation part, let me suggest an additional add-on. The iDatalink Maestro is compatible with the Kenwood Excelon DDX8905S head unit. With this device, you can retain your stock steering wheel controls. With the DVD receiver hands-free calling is possible without letting go of the steering wheel.

Plus and added features is that you can get vehicle diagnosis data.

For extra safety and convenience this DVD receiver has two camera inputs. You can mount a rear-view camera and a dash cam. If you drive a van or a truck it’s a must.

If you are interested in the outputs rear front sub 5V. Outputs: rear analog A/V output, 6-channel gold-plated preamp.

There are two more things to enjoy the best Kenwood experience. First of all, don’t forget to customize the colors and the menus. Secondly, play around with the EQ. The equalizer has 13 bands to adjust if you don’t have time for that, pick a preset.

Kenwood DDX8905S Review Conclusion

All in all, the Kenwood DDX8905S car stereo delivers on multiple fronts. It also has some bugs which will be removed in the next update.

We have reached the end of my Kenwood DDX8905S review. I hope it was valuable to you. By now, you should know if this is the right car stereo for you.

As always, I’m here to serve. Let me know your thoughts and ideas below.

Catch you later.

 

Frequently Asked Questions about Kenwood Excelon DDX8905S:

Does the Kenwood Excelon DDX8905S support dual phone connection?

Yes with the Kenwood Excelon DDX8905S you can enjoy dual phone connection.

What can the iDatalink Maestro do for the Kenwood Excelon DDX8905S DVD receiver?

If you connect the iDatalink Maestro to the Kenwood Excelon DDX8905S you will get back your steering wheel controls. Not only that but you can get vehicle information as well. For example the DVD receiver will display the tire pressure, temperatures, gauges voltages etc. This is why it’s a good idea to get an iDatalink Maestro installed.

The Kenwood Excelon DDX8905S comes with built-in Bluetooth right?

Yes with this DVD receiver the built-in Bluetooth is standard. Android Auto Apple Carplay will work great once you pair your phone with the built-in Bluetooth. You will be able to communicate with Google Assistant as well.

Can this Kenwood DVD receiver handle Android Auto Apple Carplay?

Yes with this Kenwood stereo you can use Android Auto Apple Carplay. Both Siri and Google Assistant will be there to guide you.

What are the camera inputs for DDX8905S DVD receiver?

For this unit there are two camera inputs. One for a rear-view camera and the second one for the dash cam.

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Kenwood DDX8905S Review – Is it good enough?
Kenwood DDX8905S Review – Is it good enough? 1

Mind-blowing audio after the install… There’s one secret for having a great system. You need to give more power to the speakers. This has happened time and

Editor's Rating:
5