Banking that DVD-Audio will finally take off, Panasonic has launched the first in-car audio receiver that can play both DVD-Audio and DVD video in addition to CDs.
The CQ-DVR909, announced at this week's Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas, also features the first car audio unit with a built-in centre five-watt speaker. This allows music or film dialogue to be heard directly from the head unit. In addition to this speaker there is a 45W x 4 amplifier.
The unit is part of Panasonic's vision of the "car theatre", so it is fully compatible with its CY-VM1500 7-inch diagonal LCD monitor. This is installed between the front seats or in an overhead panel. All the functions of the DVD and CD player can also be controlled by the wireless remote control included.
To emulate the sound experience of a home theatre system, the unit has built-in DTS and Dolby Digital decoders, and a subwoofer output for adding a dedicated sub and amp.
Of course, aside from all this high-tech wizardry, the unit also features a standard AM/FM receiver.
The removable player is concealed behind a motorised, flip-down front panel and features a spectrum analyser that pulses with the music to ten different patterns. For additional aesthetic attraction, it has been designed to change from a metallic appearance in the daylight to blue at night.
The CQ-DVR909 launches in the US this quarter for $1,999.99 (£1,212).
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