In the rapidly changing world of electronics; and increasing inovation - it is difficult to actually KNOW that something is an 'excellent value'. So - I do not KNOW that. Having just recently purchased this item - I of course - believe that this was a wise purchase decision. (I'd be taking it back - if I thought otherwise.) We purchased this item twice. The first one - brand new - did not work straight out of the box. I have over 3 years experience in electronics repair - and this unit had some sort of difficulty in its audio amplification circuitry. No sound output whatsoever. We promptly took it back to the store - and exchanged/purchased same identical item. This one works flawlessly. The world is not perfect - and even the best manufacturing can experience problems... This Audio Player has a 5CD changer - which works fine. Multiple shuffle capability;/ tracks, cd's; etc. Various Equalization circuits, (jazz, pop, classic, user defined, rock, flat, etc.) BASS boost... Large, clear, easily seen display. Fairly intuitive controls - haven't really read the instructions - but not confused on how to operate the unit. There can be a high speed whine associated with it - but this is not a defect. It is the cd laser moving out of the way of the CD - when the unit is changing disks, or skipping tracks... If they had the laser move SLOW - then you wouldn't hear anything like this - but since they have the laser move FAST for virtually no delay between disks when shuffling between tracks or changing disks - then a high speed whine is momentarily heard. If you have the unit just play a cd - with no shuffling between tracks - than no high speed whine is heard - since the laser is not quickly moving to a different position, or moving out of the way of the next cd disk which you programmed the unit to play... The Unit also plays a wide variety of Ipod devices; the ipod's can be controlled by the Remote Control; and the ipod is charged by the unit. The Remote control is a very nice size - not HUGE - but not extremely small either. For someone who needs reading glasses - I don't need a magnifying glass to see the buttons... The remote uses two AAA batteries - which are NOT included... However - the majority of all functions are also included on the front of the basic unit. The only functions which require the Remote is: MUTE; SELECT (confirming Ipod menu lists); and INTRO (playing the first 10 seconds of each cd track). It comes with a full 1 year warranty (including parts and labor). Unlike lots of other electronic items these days and lots of stuff from Sony... ((Like the Sony MHC-EC55) - which effectively only has a 90 day warranty - since after 90 days - you get to pay the LABOR charges to fix any problems...) Said Sony also only has a 3 cd changer - and no ipod capability (except for the aux input.) I have burned thru two Bosch Powerbox PB10-CD's; playing cd's; and although nicely constructed - they don't hold up - and are extremely expensive. This being cheaper, and having ipod capability - moved me to purchase it. Although it does not run on batteries... But I am concerned about the warranty, and the unit's longevity. But 1 year is definitely better than 90 days. The various extended warranties seem to be mostly junk - I seriously considered purchasing one - but after looking thru Wallmart's website; and finally finding the legal fine print of the extended warranty - decided that it was a waste. Since the total obligation of any of these warranties - is the purchase price of the product; and or replacement. If they replace the product, or cut you a check for the amount you paid for it - they have no further obligation. So - if you purchase a "3 year service plan" - and then a month after a year - the Sony or this RCA go out - all they have to do is to cut you a check or replace the product - and you have no more 'warranty'. Plus - per the legal fine print - since these two items both cost less than $147 - you can not actually purchase a 'service' plan - you are purchasing a 'replacement' plan (irregardless of plan title) - under which their only obligation is to replace the item, cut you a check, or give you a shopping card... - and this is for ONE time. Then no 'warranty'.... So - even though I am concerned that it might break in 2.5 years or less, etc. - the extended 'warranty' really doesn't seem worth it. Hopefully it will last quite some time. It does come with the full 1 year warranty. Sound is excellent, 3.5mm input jack; plus rca input jacks; headphone output jack (mutes speakers); easily understood controls... 300 watts - this is a good value. Online - the warranty title (by Walmart) states this has a 2 year warranty. The online details state 1 year. So does the actual paperwork. This has a 1 year - not 2 year which is a typo mistake by Walmart. And the Walmart description states this plays dvd's & dvd-r's etc. Another mistake. This plays CD's and various burned cd's. And it plays ipods. It does not play dvd's) I would recommend this player. Hope I would do so 5 years from now... The reason I gave it only 3 stars on 'meets expectations ' is because the first one we purchased - did not work. But this was easily rectified. Hope this helps. Have a good day, and get blessed - read the wonderful book of Revelation... bye!
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