Ever found yourself wishing you could combine the ability to control your music and a top of the range navigation system all in one place?
Mobile phones once filled this void, but their distracting nature meant it was a relationship-turned-sour that we had to walk away from. Luckily, double din head units are there for all your audio and GPS needs!
Transform your driving experience with a multimedia unit that allows you to change songs or turn up the volume with easy controls at the touch of your fingertips, as well as letting you follow your heart wherever it leads thanks to some of the best GPS navigation systems.
Double din head units will bring your car into the 21st Century and they have so many useful features and functions that not only make your driving experience more convenient, but safer as well.
Our buyer’s guide will walk you through the main things you’ll want to consider, and we’ve reviewed 5 of the best double din head units for your convenience. We won’t keep you from easy driving any longer. If you can’t wait to get your hands on one of these, our top pick is just below!
OUR TOP PICK
The Atoto A6 is a multimedia head unit designed to provide the ultimate user experience with extensive features that add convenience to any car system. With it’s continuous firmware updates you’re also guaranteed to have the latest technology at all times.
It features a built-in pre-amplifier with an RMS rating of 4 x 24 Watts for impressive sound quality, and the steering wheel control feature allows you to adjust the volume directly and still keep both hands on the wheel.
The reverse camera output is an added safety feature that will help you reverse into any parking space without difficulty if your car is has compatible cameras, and the large, crystal clear display makes setting adjustments easy.
The WiFi reception and in-built microphone has been greatly improved on this model which is excellent for someone who likes to make calls on the go without worrying about the conversation being cut short by bad signal.
Although it’s not a budget option, it’s more affordable than some of the other models on this list and with the list of features it has to offer, this double din head unit is great value for money and, for that reason, it’s our top pick!
Strong WiFi signal during hands-free calling
Reversing camera compatibility
No DVD or CD import
Sony has been rising through the ranks of audio quality over the last few years and it shows in the fantastic sound produced by the Sony XAV-AX1000 media receiver. It features an integrated 4 x 55 Watts amplifier to guarantee clear sound even when the music is cranked up high.
It has multiple connection options such as USB and AUX for external players or bluetooth for wireless streaming. If podcasts and shared playlists aren’t your thing, tune into FM or AM radio with 18 channels to choose from.
For the truly tech-savvy, the XAV-AX1000 is compatible with all your favorite apps, and with Apple CarPlay you can stay up to date, hands free. Siri is also available to help with your every need, and with just your voice, you can skip songs, get directions, or ask Siri to tell you a joke.
Another great feature is the connection for rear view camera if your car has one, helping you maneuver into even the tightest of spaces. The Sony XAV-AX1000 is designed for all-round convenience and will undoubtedly enhance your driving experience.
Dynamic Reality Amp 2 with 4 x 55 Watts prevents interference
Reverse camera compatibility
Google Maps and Waze available to download
Slightly more expensive
The JVC KW-R520 is a great choice for anyone looking for a simple head unit with the basic functions to support a great audio sound system, and its 2.5 line and subwoofer pre-output level will hugely enhance the quality of your music.
Catering to all the old-schoolers, this head unit features CD-R and CD-RW playback for CDs you bought or burnt illegal downloads onto years ago. If you’re living more firmly in the 21st Century, you can download the JVC free Android music app from Google Play to easily control your music.
This JVC head unit also offers steering mounting remote control capabilities for easy volume adjustment to keep your focus straight ahead. It has a powerful 200 Watts power output to provide louder, better sounding music.
Steering remote control compatible
200 Watts power output
This touchscreen android head unit by Camecho Q3162EUA3 is the most affordable option on this list and it’s great for anyone looking to upgrade their car system on a budget. The range of functions this model has to offer make it excellent value for money.
The online GPS navigation system will get you where you want to go with no trouble and you can manually download free maps to your unit, with a map of Europe pre-installed on previous versions of GPS.
Like some of the other double din head units on this list, the Camecho Q3162EUA3 offers rear view camera compatibility, but this model goes the extra mile and includes a mini waterproof rear camera for you to install, with 12 IR light so you can even see well in the dark and 6M AV cable.
If you have an iOS or Android phone you can connect it to your head unit screen to make use of the mirror link feature, which allows for easy song selection. Built-in BT also enables hands-free calling for conversations on the go.
Mini waterproof rear camera included
Great value for money
Difficult to install
Best Double Din Head Units Buying Guide
What is a double din head unit?
Also known as din car stereos, double din head units get their name from two influences: ‘double’ refers to its size measurements, which are a standardized 178mm by 100mm, and ‘din’ is taken from the German ‘Deutsch Industry Normen’, which is their name for this clever, multipurpose unit system.
Whilst all double din head units will have the same basic functions, including audio control and GPS navigation systems, they can vary in terms of features and functions which can really set them apart.
Because of this, it can be difficult to find a double din head unit that will fit all users’ preferences. There’s no one size fits all when it comes to multimedia head units, and it’ll largely depend on what you’re looking to get out it.
Gone are the days of fighting with a map so large it almost obscures the windscreen, so complicated you’d need to have the skills and wits of a girl-scouts leader to follow it. Instead, driving is made easy thanks to advances in technology and the development of GPS systems, so arguing with your partner over not stopping for directions can be a thing of the past.
Double din head units have been developed to include built-in GPS navigation systems with the most updated technology, and with bigger screen sizes it’s even easier to follow directions to arrive safely at your destination.
Audio Power Output
Instead of installing an external amplifier to upgrade your car’s factory settings, choosing a double din head unit with a high peak power and RMS rating can power up to 4 speakers in your car for surround sound, high-quality audio.
Head units with higher power capabilities produce louder, clearer sound, which makes it an important consideration for any music lover who wants to improve their current sound system.
Some of the better double din head units will have mounting pads included, as well as any other equipment that’s required to mount your unit in your vehicle.
Some models can be tricky to install however, and if you’ve decided to invest in a new piece of equipment it’s not worth risking any damage to it through improper installation. If you’re unsure, it may be a good idea to hire a professional to install it correctly.
Being able to connect to other devices is one of the key features of double din head units, setting it apart from other radio setups or GPS navigation systems by letting you access all these functions in one place!
Consider the output connection requirements you’re looking for in a head unit, as newer models include Bluetooth features as well as AUX and USB connections. Bluetooth is also a great way to unlock some of the hands-free features your double din head unit.
Being able to connect multiple devices at one time is also a useful function, but it is not available on more basic units, so you’ll have to part ways with some extra cash to experience ultimaate convenience.
Features and Functions for User Convenience
Some of the better quality double din head units can connect to the apps on your phone to provide a seamless user experience whilst also keeping you safe.
Steering wheel control is another useful feature, although it is only compatible with certain models. This allows you to adjust the volume using just the steering wheel, meaning you can keep your eyes on the road and still rock out with the volume turned high.
You can also find head units that connect to your vehicle’s rearview camera meaning you can reverse with confidence, knowing you’ve got all angles covered.
These days, pieces of technology are often designed with more than just their functionality in mind, as people look for high-quality performance in equipment that also looks great.
The best double din head units will bring a sleek, stylish element to your vehicle. Larger screens make it easier to change your settings and some even offer video playback to help manage cries of “are we there yet?”
Frequently Asked Questions
What are the safety benefits to having a double din head unit?
Many of the features offered on these units are safety-improving, as they reduce the risk of distractions while you’re driving. For example, hands-free calling and screen mirroring means you don’t ever need to take your mobile in hand.
Will a double din head unit fit in my car?
The only way to know if your chosen unit can be installed in your car is to check the product specification information to check the measurements. Most double din head units come in a standardized size, but it’s always better to be safe than sorry as some models aren’t compatible with every car.
How do I know if my unit will connect to my mobile phone?
Most double din head units will state whether they are compatible with Android or iOS users in the product specification and certain models will be compatible with Apple CarPlay or Android Radio.