Reviews

LAST UPDATED: April 23, 2019

Best Double-DIN Head Units: Improve Your Sound and Visual Experience 

Upgrade your car stereo with these top-quality double-DIN head units

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    14 Reviews

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PUBLISHED ON April 23, 2019

A DIN head unit is the multimedia device fitted into the dashboard of your car to control the infotainment system. In contrast to a single-DIN head unit, a double-DIN head unit is twice the size with the ability to give you better control options and extra input capacity. If you're looking for the best double-DIN head unit, check out our in-depth reviews and recommendations.

  • Best Overall
    Pioneer AVH-1300NEX Multimedia Receiver
    Pioneer AVH-1300NEX Multimedia Receiver
    Summary
    Summary
    This product features a 6.2-inch touchscreen with an installation manual that is easy to follow. It is designed to support all types of audio and video file formats.
    Pros
    Pros
    It comes with Apple CarPlay compatibility and a disc slot that can play both CDs and DVDs. The connectivity can support a USB device, Bluetooth and AUX input. It can connect to satellite radio and AM/FM frequency.
    Cons
    Cons
    The USB port is located at the back of the stereo. Also, it doesn’t support Android Auto.
  • Best Overall
    Pioneer AVH-1300NEX Multimedia Receiver
    Pioneer AVH-1300NEX Multimedia Receiver
  • Best Value
    Pioneer MVH-S600BS Double-Din Digital Media Receiver
    Pioneer MVH-S600BS Double-Din Digital Media Receiver
    Summary
    Summary
    A budget car stereo that incorporates both traditional and modern design. The display illuminates and can change color to match the interior of your car.
    Pros
    Pros
    It can assist in making hands-free calls via Bluetooth connectivity. The interface allows it to be controlled remotely through a smartphone application, and you can access music via a USB device.
    Cons
    Cons
    It doesn’t feature Apple Carplay or Android Auto. There is no disc slot for CDs or DVDs.
  • Best Value
    Pioneer MVH-S600BS Double-Din Digital Media Receiver
    Pioneer MVH-S600BS Double-Din Digital Media Receiver
  • Honorable Mention
    BOSS Audio Systems BV9358B Car DVD Player
    BOSS Audio Systems BV9358B Car DVD Player
    Summary
    Summary
    This unit has a 6.2-inch touchscreen display. It works as a MP3, CD, DVD, WMA, USB, SD, radio, and AUX. It also has Bluetooth functionality.
    Pros
    Pros
    You can use this unit to make and answer calls hands-free. The wide variety of input options gives you freedom in how you use the unit. It also has an equalizer to let you customize the sound of your music.
    Cons
    Cons
    The functionality of this unit is lacking. It has a delayed and glitchy reaction time. It also has plastic caps over the input ports that are a challenge to get out.
  • Honorable Mention
    BOSS Audio Systems BV9358B Car DVD Player
    BOSS Audio Systems BV9358B Car DVD Player

    A DIN head unit is the multimedia device fitted into the dashboard of your car to control the infotainment system. In contrast to a single-DIN head unit, a double-DIN head unit is twice the size with the ability to give you better control options and extra input capacity. If you're looking for the best double-DIN head unit, check out our in-depth reviews and recommendations.

    Best Double-DIN Head Unit Reviews & Recommendations 2020

    Best Overall

    The Pioneer AVH-1300NEX includes all the features that you would expect from a top-quality car stereo. Even though the 6.2-inch touchscreen is slightly smaller compared to other double-DIN head units, it is very responsive and easy to operate. Also, the installation is straight-forward since the instruction manual is very detailed to the extent of adding diagrams to make it simple to understand. It supports Apple CarPlay, making it convenient to integrate with Apple products. Besides that, it can still play CDs and DVDs. When it comes to connectivity, it can be linked to Bluetooth, a USB port, and an extra AUX input. The radio option offers both AM/FM and Sirius XM connectivity. Apart from the diverse music streaming alternatives, it can also support almost every video file format. The biggest downside of the Pioneer AVH-1300NEX Multimedia Receiver is that it isn’t compatible with Android Auto. Regardless, Android users can still connect their phones to the native interface and use the touchscreen to access their favorite Android apps. Another slight disadvantage is the USB port is positioned on the backside, which will require an extension cable.

    Best Value

    The MVH-S600BS Double-Din Digital Media Receiver is pocket-friendly with a minimalist approach in its design. Since we’re no longer in the era of CDs, the designers of this product forgot about the disc slot altogether. On the face, it features a rotary dial and a unique illuminating display that blends both traditional and modern car stereos. Since the Pioneer MVH-S600BS Double-Din Digital Media Receiver doesn’t have CarPlay or Android Auto compatibility, it is modified to be remotely controlled by an iPhone or Android phone through the ARC app. Alternatively, you can still make or receive your calls hands-free through a Bluetooth connection and stream music via a USB cable using your smartphone. The stereo can support MP3, FLAC, WMA, WAV, and AAC audio files. The most noticeable shortcoming of this car stereo is that it doesn’t feature a graphics touchscreen that plays videos. Beyond that, you can’t access your favorite smartphone applications on this double-DIN head unit.

    Honorable Mention

    This BOSS audio system has a 6.2-inch touchscreen display. You can connect your phone via Bluetooth for hands-free answering and making calls. The system integrates with the sound system in your car so that the call audio comes out through your car’s speakers. You can use this unit to play a wide variety of formats, including CD, DVD, USB, SD, radio, and auxiliary inputs. Where this unit really excels is its audio quality. The back of the unit has several sound inputs and outputs, so you can create a custom speaker system in your car. Then in the interface, you can customize the sound quality to match the music you like to play. The equalizer lets you make precise audio adjustments. However, while this unit looks great and has a ton of features, the functionality of it is lacking. You’ll find it has a delayed response when using the touchscreen, buttons, or volume dial. The display is glitchy and will skip or pause when playing videos. It also struggles to play the correct song or keep accurate time.

    Honorable Mention

    This 7-inch car stereo has a capacitive touchscreen and a quad-core internal system. It comes with several features, including Bluetooth 4.0, Wi-Fi, 4G, radio, and GPs navigation. A rearview camera and remote control are also included with the unit. The unit is specifically designed to work with Android phones. The screen display is beautiful on this unit, thanks to the full HD 1080p supported display. The display gets even more impressive when you realize that it is responsive and can support multi-touch. There are several built-in wallpapers, and it can support a custom wallpaper design so you can customize your unit however you want. Unfortunately, the 7-inch display makes it too large to fit in most standard double-DIN adapters. It’s also noticeably slow during startup. This is an Android-based unit, so if you have an Apple smartphone, this unit won’t be compatible. Even if you do have an Android phone, you’ll need to make sure the unit and your phone use the same operating system, or it may not work correctly.

    Honorable Mention

    This double-DIN head unit from Jensen features a 6.2-inch touch screen. It has a screen resolution of 800 x 480 pixels. It’s compatible with Apple CarPlay and there’s a built-in Bluetooth function. You’ll also get an SD input and a USB port with charging capabilities. The CarPlay interface of this unit is outstanding. There’s also a screen mirroring option that lets you display your phone’s screen directly on the unit’s screen. You can connect the unit to your steering controls for full integration into your car’s system. Unfortunately, the microphone that comes with this unit could be better. It’s hard to adjust, and you may not be able to get it to point towards you. The sound quality isn’t the best, either. You’ll need to do a lot of adjusting to get it to a pleasant-sounding place from the default settings.

    Honorable Mention

    JVC is well-known in the electronic world for making high-quality equipment that produces a dependable sound quality. This unit won’t let you down with its 6.2-inch resistive touchscreen and audio features. It comes with Bluetooth, SiriusXM compatibility, smartphone syncing, CD, DVD, MP3, and USB playback. Take a look at the 13-band graphic equalizer. It lets you put those three sets of 5V preamp outlets to use for a complete sound system. This unit also comes with all of the wiring harnesses you need to completely install the unit. Unfortunately, screen visibility is lacking. Even when you turn the brightness up all the way, it can be challenging to see the screen in real-world driving conditions. The user interface is hard to learn, and even the updates won’t help improve it.

    Honorable Mention

    This 6.75-inch multimedia player from Sound Storm has an LCD touchscreen. It comes with both Android Auto and Apple CarPlay functionality. Both operate through voice command, so you can have a full hands-free operation of your phone while driving. This includes maps and navigation, Bluetooth calling, and media playback. The unit also supports several built-in apps, including iHeartRadio, Google play music, WhatsApp, podcasts, and Radio Disney. A nice feature with this unit is the ability to customize the display. You can choose from a variety of colors for the illumination of the controls. You can also rearrange the apps, so they display in the order that’s most useful for you. Unfortunately, the sound quality is lacking in this unit. You also can’t improve it because there are fewer audio input and output ports on the back. Of the ports that are located on the unit, none are labeled, so you’ll need to decipher the owner’s manual diagram if you want to connect anything

    Honorable Mention

    This aftermarket in-dash car stereo from Pyle has a 6.2-inch screen. The touchscreen is high resolution and uses TFT and LCD technology. It has Bluetooth compatibility that allows for hands-free calling, music, and video. You can connect your system to your steering wheel controls for full integration. You also have a built-in CD player, USB ports, and an SD slot. There’s an included remote to make controlling your system easier. The user interface included in this unit makes it easy to learn and use. To enhance your user experience, even more, you can adjust the multicolor illumination for a custom and beautiful display. You also have several AV ports and subwoofer ports to help you create a custom entertainment system within the cabin of your car. Unfortunately, the display could be sharper; it has a hazy look to it. The screen isn’t as responsive as the higher-end models on this list. You’ll also find that it doesn’t include as many accessories for easier installation that other units include.

    Honorable Mention

    If you’re interested in having the best sound quality, with a beautiful display and user-friendly interface, then you need to take a look at this double-DIN player from Kenwood. The 6.8-inch clear resistive touchscreen has a resolution of 800 x400. You can customize the display and digitally adjust the display angle. You can sync your smartphone with Apple CarPlay, Android Auto, and WebLink. It also plays CDs, DVDs, and USB memory devices. The additional unique features on this device are what really make it stand out. There are two camera inputs, three pairs of 4V preamp outputs, and an entire wiring harness for mounting the unit, microphone, and USB extension cable. Unfortunately, you may find that Kenwood takes things too far. The number of equalizer options can be overwhelming and make it challenging to get just the right settings for the ideal sound. You may also find the menu screens to be complicated and slightly confusing. You need to use a high-quality USB cable—like an OEM one—if you want the unit to have full syncing functionality.

    Honorable Mention

    This in-dash receiver unit has a 6.1-inch touchscreen. It has built-in Bluetooth, AM/FM tuner, and CD/DVD playback. You can connect your Apple iPhone 6/6+ or newer. You can use the hands-free calling function, or use the buttons on the left side of the unit. There is a dedicated rear camera input port for rear HDMI audio and video input. A nice feature for this unit is the detachable faceplate. This helps deter theft as you can remove the face of the unit when you’re not with the car. This unit also comes with a SiriusXM Connect vehicle tuner. You can try out satellite radio for three months for free. Another nice touch is that the wires and AV ports that are wiring harnesses. This gives you more functionality and freedom in how you hook your unit up to your car’s current system. Unfortunately, this unit has a tendency to freeze up, which requires you to do a hard reset to fix it. The display can also be hard to see. It can look dark and have low contrast when in real-world situations.

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    Why Buy A Double-DIN Head Unit?

    • Bluetooth connectivity. A double-DIN head unit allows you to connect it to your smartphone, tablet, and other Bluetooth-compatible devices for extensive file sharing. That means if you have a library of songs or audiobooks, you could stream it on the double-DIN head unit.
    • Hands-free control. Since you can connect your double-DIN head unit via Bluetooth, you can receive and initiate calls without physically touching the head unit. Also, a passenger seated in the back seat can change the playlist through a phone or tablet.
    • Enhanced sound quality. It takes more than just upgrading the speakers to improve the sound quality. In fact, a double-DIN head unit features advanced software that integrates different sound variations.
    • Easy screen control. Compared to a single-DIN head unit, a double-DIN head unit comes with a bigger screen that makes it convenient to touch and select the options. Furthermore, the graphics interface is enhanced for better user experience.
    • Multiple media connections. A double-DIN head unit gives you the option to access multiple media sources such as a USB port, SD card, radio, mp3 player, smartphone, and a CD/DVD player. It is even possible to charge your phone on double-DIN car stereos.

    Types

    Smartphone Integration Display

    Modern technology has made it possible for double-DIN head units to include software that can integrate your smartphone’s operating system. The integration system comes with a touchscreen monitor that enables you to operate your smartphone apps on the head unit interface. In this category, you will either find Apple CarPlay compatibility or Android Auto compatibility. 

    Non-Integration Double-DIN Head Unit

    This type of double-DIN head unit isn’t designed to mirror the apps on your smartphone. In fact, some of them don’t even have a graphic touchscreen display. However, they can still connect to a USB port, SD, Bluetooth, AUX, radio, and even play CDs or DVDs. The main objective of non-integration head units is to keep it simple and avoid distracting the driver.

    Top Brands

    JVC Kenwood

    JVC Kenwood is a Japanese company headquartered in Yokohama. Prior to the merger that created the JVC Kenwood brand in 2008, both JVC and Kenwood were reputable for designing and manufacturing consumer electronics for more than 50 years. One of its most popular double-DIN head units is the Kenwood DDX9903S AV Receiver Apple CarPlay

    Pioneer

    Popularly known for introducing the world’s first automotive CD player in 1984, Pioneer is a leading innovator of head units. The company is based in Tokyo, Japan. One of its highest selling double-DIN head units is the Pioneer AVH-1300NEX Multimedia Receiver

    Boss Audio

    Boss Audio is an American company headquartered in Oxnard, California. It has been innovating audio products for the past 30 years and exporting its products to 130 countries across the world. Its top double-DIN unit is the BOSS Audio BVCP9675A Car Multimedia Player

    Sony

    A household name among electronic consumers worldwide, the Sony brand has been designing and manufacturing electronic products for more than half a century. It’s headquartered in Tokyo, Japan. Currently, one of its most popular double-DIN stereos is the Sony XAV-AX7000 6.95" High Power Media Receiver.

    Alpine

    A subsidiary of Alps Electrics, the Alpine brand has been dedicated to introducing the best car audio and navigation systems since 1967. The company headquarters is based in Tokyo, Japan. One of its well-renowned double-DIN head units is the Alpine ILX-107

    Pricing

    • Under $100: Any double-DIN head unit car stereo in this price range will likely have an internal system that doesn’t integrate with smartphone applications. 
    • $100 - $300: Most double-DIN stereos sold in this price category feature a graphic touchscreen and an interface that can integrate with your smartphone’s functionality.
    • Over $300: There are very few double-DIN head units that are sold for more than $300. However, you can find a couple of top-range products with extra features such as dual OS compatibility, a backup camera, and an advanced navigation system.

    Key Features

    Pre-Amp Outputs

    A quality double-DIN stereo should send a signal to any upgraded speaker system in your car. Hence, you should carefully scrutinize the pre-amp outputs since they determine the signals which affect the sound system. As a general rule, the best double-DIN head unit for sound quality should have multiple pre-amp outputs with high signal voltage to make it possible to expand your sound system.

    Compatibility

    It’s the streaming era. The best double-DIN units are the ones which can integrate with your smartphone apps through Apple CarPlay or Android Auto. It’s even better if you can connect to the internet and access Spotify, iTunes, or Netflix via the graphic touchscreen of the car stereo.

    Connectivity

    Most drivers need a double-DIN stereo with Bluetooth connectivity that allows them to answer or make phone calls or to stream music without requiring a cable. Keep in mind that the best double-DIN head unit should be able to connect multiple devices at the same time via Bluetooth.

    Power

    A powerful car stereo ought to play loud or soft music without distorting the sound. How do you make a judgment call to know if the power of a head unit is satisfactory? You simply check the RMS Wattage; the higher the RMS wattage, the more the car stereo can maintain its sound quality and composure for a longer period of time. However, you should avoid looking at head units with peak wattage since they’re often unreliable.

    Other Considerations

    • Anti-Theft Protection: Most automobile thieves target car stereos since they’re easier to sell and less risky to steal compared to your vehicle. Nevertheless, if you’re living in a high-theft-prone area, you can buy a head unit with a face that can be easily detached and locked up in the glove compartment or the trunk.
    • Easy Installation: Most double-DIN head units are sold with an instruction manual to guide you through the installation process. Usually, the easiest car stereos to install are the ones with a properly-labeled wiring harness that can be easily distinguished. Also, a wiring loom adapter may be needed to connect with steering wheel controls.
    • High-Quality Display: A big display twice the size of a single-DIN head unit will make your user experience better, but there are other factors to consider. For instance, a touchscreen with an automatic brightness display that adjusts to day and night will be less distracting. Additionally, a good display should be easy to read and select the options.
    • Navigation: Nowadays, there are double-DIN head units that are sold with an internal GPS navigation system. This is a great feature, especially for those who are driving cars without inbuilt GPS systems. However, a head unit that can mirror a smartphone touchscreen can simulate GPS applications on its touchscreen.

    Best Double-DIN Head Unit Reviews & Recommendations 2020

    Best Overall
    Pioneer AVH-1300NEX Multimedia Receiver

    The Pioneer AVH-1300NEX includes all the features that you would expect from a top-quality car stereo. Even though the 6.2-inch touchscreen is slightly smaller compared to other double-DIN head units, it is very responsive and easy to operate. Also, the installation is straight-forward since the instruction manual is very detailed to the extent of adding diagrams to make it simple to understand. It supports Apple CarPlay, making it convenient to integrate with Apple products. Besides that, it can still play CDs and DVDs. When it comes to connectivity, it can be linked to Bluetooth, a USB port, and an extra AUX input. The radio option offers both AM/FM and Sirius XM connectivity. Apart from the diverse music streaming alternatives, it can also support almost every video file format. The biggest downside of the Pioneer AVH-1300NEX Multimedia Receiver is that it isn’t compatible with Android Auto. Regardless, Android users can still connect their phones to the native interface and use the touchscreen to access their favorite Android apps. Another slight disadvantage is the USB port is positioned on the backside, which will require an extension cable.

    Best Value
    Pioneer MVH-S600BS Double-Din Digital Media Receiver

    The MVH-S600BS Double-Din Digital Media Receiver is pocket-friendly with a minimalist approach in its design. Since we’re no longer in the era of CDs, the designers of this product forgot about the disc slot altogether. On the face, it features a rotary dial and a unique illuminating display that blends both traditional and modern car stereos. Since the Pioneer MVH-S600BS Double-Din Digital Media Receiver doesn’t have CarPlay or Android Auto compatibility, it is modified to be remotely controlled by an iPhone or Android phone through the ARC app. Alternatively, you can still make or receive your calls hands-free through a Bluetooth connection and stream music via a USB cable using your smartphone. The stereo can support MP3, FLAC, WMA, WAV, and AAC audio files. The most noticeable shortcoming of this car stereo is that it doesn’t feature a graphics touchscreen that plays videos. Beyond that, you can’t access your favorite smartphone applications on this double-DIN head unit.

    Honorable Mention
    BOSS Audio Systems BV9358B Car DVD Player

    This BOSS audio system has a 6.2-inch touchscreen display. You can connect your phone via Bluetooth for hands-free answering and making calls. The system integrates with the sound system in your car so that the call audio comes out through your car’s speakers. You can use this unit to play a wide variety of formats, including CD, DVD, USB, SD, radio, and auxiliary inputs. Where this unit really excels is its audio quality. The back of the unit has several sound inputs and outputs, so you can create a custom speaker system in your car. Then in the interface, you can customize the sound quality to match the music you like to play. The equalizer lets you make precise audio adjustments. However, while this unit looks great and has a ton of features, the functionality of it is lacking. You’ll find it has a delayed response when using the touchscreen, buttons, or volume dial. The display is glitchy and will skip or pause when playing videos. It also struggles to play the correct song or keep accurate time.

    Honorable Mention
    EINCAR Android 9.0 Car Stereo

    This 7-inch car stereo has a capacitive touchscreen and a quad-core internal system. It comes with several features, including Bluetooth 4.0, Wi-Fi, 4G, radio, and GPs navigation. A rearview camera and remote control are also included with the unit. The unit is specifically designed to work with Android phones. The screen display is beautiful on this unit, thanks to the full HD 1080p supported display. The display gets even more impressive when you realize that it is responsive and can support multi-touch. There are several built-in wallpapers, and it can support a custom wallpaper design so you can customize your unit however you want. Unfortunately, the 7-inch display makes it too large to fit in most standard double-DIN adapters. It’s also noticeably slow during startup. This is an Android-based unit, so if you have an Apple smartphone, this unit won’t be compatible. Even if you do have an Android phone, you’ll need to make sure the unit and your phone use the same operating system, or it may not work correctly.

    Honorable Mention
    Jensen 6.2

    This double-DIN head unit from Jensen features a 6.2-inch touch screen. It has a screen resolution of 800 x 480 pixels. It’s compatible with Apple CarPlay and there’s a built-in Bluetooth function. You’ll also get an SD input and a USB port with charging capabilities. The CarPlay interface of this unit is outstanding. There’s also a screen mirroring option that lets you display your phone’s screen directly on the unit’s screen. You can connect the unit to your steering controls for full integration into your car’s system. Unfortunately, the microphone that comes with this unit could be better. It’s hard to adjust, and you may not be able to get it to point towards you. The sound quality isn’t the best, either. You’ll need to do a lot of adjusting to get it to a pleasant-sounding place from the default settings.

    Honorable Mention
    JVC 6.2

    JVC is well-known in the electronic world for making high-quality equipment that produces a dependable sound quality. This unit won’t let you down with its 6.2-inch resistive touchscreen and audio features. It comes with Bluetooth, SiriusXM compatibility, smartphone syncing, CD, DVD, MP3, and USB playback. Take a look at the 13-band graphic equalizer. It lets you put those three sets of 5V preamp outlets to use for a complete sound system. This unit also comes with all of the wiring harnesses you need to completely install the unit. Unfortunately, screen visibility is lacking. Even when you turn the brightness up all the way, it can be challenging to see the screen in real-world driving conditions. The user interface is hard to learn, and even the updates won’t help improve it.

    Honorable Mention
    Sound Storm Multimedia Player

    This 6.75-inch multimedia player from Sound Storm has an LCD touchscreen. It comes with both Android Auto and Apple CarPlay functionality. Both operate through voice command, so you can have a full hands-free operation of your phone while driving. This includes maps and navigation, Bluetooth calling, and media playback. The unit also supports several built-in apps, including iHeartRadio, Google play music, WhatsApp, podcasts, and Radio Disney. A nice feature with this unit is the ability to customize the display. You can choose from a variety of colors for the illumination of the controls. You can also rearrange the apps, so they display in the order that’s most useful for you. Unfortunately, the sound quality is lacking in this unit. You also can’t improve it because there are fewer audio input and output ports on the back. Of the ports that are located on the unit, none are labeled, so you’ll need to decipher the owner’s manual diagram if you want to connect anything

    Honorable Mention
    Pyle Double Din Car Stereo Player

    This aftermarket in-dash car stereo from Pyle has a 6.2-inch screen. The touchscreen is high resolution and uses TFT and LCD technology. It has Bluetooth compatibility that allows for hands-free calling, music, and video. You can connect your system to your steering wheel controls for full integration. You also have a built-in CD player, USB ports, and an SD slot. There’s an included remote to make controlling your system easier. The user interface included in this unit makes it easy to learn and use. To enhance your user experience, even more, you can adjust the multicolor illumination for a custom and beautiful display. You also have several AV ports and subwoofer ports to help you create a custom entertainment system within the cabin of your car. Unfortunately, the display could be sharper; it has a hazy look to it. The screen isn’t as responsive as the higher-end models on this list. You’ll also find that it doesn’t include as many accessories for easier installation that other units include.

    Honorable Mention
    Kenwood Double Din Player

    If you’re interested in having the best sound quality, with a beautiful display and user-friendly interface, then you need to take a look at this double-DIN player from Kenwood. The 6.8-inch clear resistive touchscreen has a resolution of 800 x400. You can customize the display and digitally adjust the display angle. You can sync your smartphone with Apple CarPlay, Android Auto, and WebLink. It also plays CDs, DVDs, and USB memory devices. The additional unique features on this device are what really make it stand out. There are two camera inputs, three pairs of 4V preamp outputs, and an entire wiring harness for mounting the unit, microphone, and USB extension cable. Unfortunately, you may find that Kenwood takes things too far. The number of equalizer options can be overwhelming and make it challenging to get just the right settings for the ideal sound. You may also find the menu screens to be complicated and slightly confusing. You need to use a high-quality USB cable—like an OEM one—if you want the unit to have full syncing functionality.

    Honorable Mention
    Alpine Multimedia System Tuner

    This in-dash receiver unit has a 6.1-inch touchscreen. It has built-in Bluetooth, AM/FM tuner, and CD/DVD playback. You can connect your Apple iPhone 6/6+ or newer. You can use the hands-free calling function, or use the buttons on the left side of the unit. There is a dedicated rear camera input port for rear HDMI audio and video input. A nice feature for this unit is the detachable faceplate. This helps deter theft as you can remove the face of the unit when you’re not with the car. This unit also comes with a SiriusXM Connect vehicle tuner. You can try out satellite radio for three months for free. Another nice touch is that the wires and AV ports that are wiring harnesses. This gives you more functionality and freedom in how you hook your unit up to your car’s current system. Unfortunately, this unit has a tendency to freeze up, which requires you to do a hard reset to fix it. The display can also be hard to see. It can look dark and have low contrast when in real-world situations.

    Tips & Advice

    • When removing or installing a double-DIN head unit, make sure you disconnect the car battery to avoid exposing yourself to a live wire or popping a fuse. If the car battery is activated during installation, you risk damaging the car stereo.
    • Most car stereos with only Apple CarPlay compatibility can still be connected to an Android device via the USB port. Even though such head units can’t fully integrate Android Auto, they can open files from an Android device.
    • If your car has steering wheel controls, you will need an extra wiring harness to connect it with a double-DIN stereo. Most head unit manufacturers sell spare wiring loom separately.
    • If your double-DIN head unit features a graphic touchscreen with Apple CarPlay or Android Auto compatibility, you don't really need to pay extra for a stereo with built-in GPS navigation. Instead, you can access your location straight from Google or Apple Maps. 

    FAQs

    Q: Will a double-DIN head unit fit in my dashboard?

    A: Most modern cars being sold today have an extra space in the dash for a double-DIN car stereo. If you're having trouble trying to fit in a double-DIN head unit, you can buy a faceplate that can accommodate it.

    Q: Can my double-DIN stereo work without an antenna?

    A: The radio reception will be weaker without the antenna. However, if you’re connecting to the radio through the internet, your car stereo will still stream radio. Alternatively, you can switch on your smartphone radio and connect it to the car stereo via Bluetooth.

    Q: What is the difference between a single-DIN and a double-DIN head unit?

    A: In the automotive industry, the single-DIN is a standard opening measuring at least 7 x 2 inches where a typical car stereo can fit. On the other hand, the measurement for a double-DIN size opening is 7 x 4 inches.

    Final Thoughts

    Our top pick for the best double-DIN head unit is the Pioneer AVH-1300NEX Multimedia Receiver. It is user-friendly and, whether you want to stream music or watch videos from a CD/DVD, USB flash disk, or a smartphone, you can still utilize the same device.

    For a close second pick if you are on a tight budget, consider the Pioneer MVH-S600BS Double-Din Digital Media Receiver.