* Prices may differ from that shown
When I bought my current car, the previous owner had already installed their CD player. I hadn't really given much thought to having a multi-changer in any previous cars, so this hadn't been a major selling point for me. However, it wasn't long before I realised the benefits of having such a product in your car.
It's small enough so that being stored in the boot and wired in to the sound system of the car, it doesn't take up much room. It has a protective sliding cover over a gap which allows you to take the disc container out, change the discs, and then slot it back in again. It clicks to let you know it's installed back in again properly, before a slight whirring noise to tell you something's actually going on. The container has 10 slots that are very standard in terms of multi-disc players, and it's a secure unit. If you hold it the wrong way up, the slots don't all slide out, so it's well designed.
I like the fact that this is compatible with CD-R and CD-RW discs, as a lot of changers can only play original discs. My wife and I like making compilation CDs, so it's handy, and in a world where downloadable singles and albums are taking over the industry, there's an ever increasing need from consumers for these types of CD players to be compatible with homemade CDs.
One of the potential issues may be skipping, and it's a valid worry many people have with multi-changers in cars, especially when the roads are bumpy. However, I rarely have a problem with this, and I regularly drive on back lanes and country roads. The only time I have had an issue is when going over sleeping policemen or other substantial movements on the road, such as coming off a curb. Then, I get a momentary pause in play, and then it kicks back in straight away. I find this is a big plus for me, and the only other reason a disc would skip was if it was actually damaged and would be likely to skip in any player.
Speed is no issue, either. You'd think it would take a while for the discs to change and for it to actually process to playing in the car, but I find that changing disc only takes a few seconds each time, and play is instant after that. Another impressive point. When one disc is finished, it automatically switches to the next one and plays automatically. If there happens to be no disc in a slot, it just bypasses it and goes to the next one. I know some multi-changers that won't do the skipping where necessary. It's a small point, but the little things often make a big difference.
Overall, I really like this CD changer. The protective sliding cover has broken and only hangs on loosely now, but then its only real function was to protect the inside magazine, and as long as you're careful with whatever else is in your boot, then this shouldn't matter too much. I'm impressed with this changer, and find it very easy to use all the time. We change discs regularly, and wouldn't really want to change for another one - there'd be no point. It has a price tag of £80 or thereabouts at the moment, which is perhaps something I'd struggle to justify as a luxury, but if you're definitely looking for a really good CD changer, then this is one I'd happily recommend.
This Sony 10-disc CD changer features CD text and is CD-R & CD-RW compatible.