How do you choose the best car multimedia system? What functions and features should the car multimedia system have according to your needs? Read our guide and choose informed.
If you can't imagine a car trip without listening to your favorite songs in the car, if nothing makes you feel better than listening to your favorite radio in the morning on the way to work, or if you simply want to be able to connect your phone to the car to communicate easier, then you need the best car multimedia system.
Technology has also evolved a lot in car entertainment solutions, so now you can forget about cassette radios, and buy a multimedia system that will allow you to take full advantage of all the advantages of technology progress.
Here in this article where other drivers have found such a cheap system, but also how you can choose the best car multimedia system for your car.
Top 3 recommended car multimedia systems
Why choose the best car multimedia system?
A quality multimedia system will be both aesthetically pleasing and efficient . Not only will it look great on the dashboard, but it will be able to deliver a quality sound that will please everyone in the car.
With more power and better circuits, a new multimedia system is simply noisier than an old car radio. The sound is clearer, richer, more detailed . In fact, many systems allow you to control the pitch of the sound so that it is very fine.
Also, the best car multimedia system allows you more than just playing music from the radio or a CD.
You will be able to attach a memory stick, play music in different formats, connect your mobile phone or use it as a GPS .
How to choose the best car multimedia system
All these advantages are worth a new investment, but how do you know that the product you want to buy is good, that it will fit your car and that you will be able to use all its functions.
Is its price justified? Is it optimized for your needs? Does it have all the features you want to buy? To choose the best car multimedia system, you need to spend some time for information.
With an increasingly rich offer on the market, it can be difficult to figure out which is the best decision for you. Fortunately, we've already made your job easier.
In this article you will discover a shopping guide that contains all the information you need to make a good choice. Also, at the end we prepared a list of the best car multimedia systems, now available at the best quality / price ratio on the market .
Here's why you need to consider making a good choice:
What do you use more often? A CD? DVDs? USB? It is important to determine the source of the sounds you want to play in the car.
Depending on your answer, you need to decide if you want to opt for a classic CD-player, or an advanced system with a large and color display on which you can play the image.
Even if you have an impressive collection in your CD case, chances are you or your passenger will choose to play music directly from your phone or media player.
Make sure the new car multimedia system includes at least one USB port for MP3, or WMA , and that it can read memory sticks or memory cards . Also, a 3.5 mm analog plug never breaks.
Smartphone applications and integration
Modern car multimedia systems allow you to connect your mobile phone directly to your car , thus playing music from it and being able to make and take phone calls in the car.
So make sure that the multimedia system you choose is compatible with the operating system on your phone, in most cases it is Android or IOS .
Regardless of the operating system, make sure that the car multimedia system allows Bluetooth connectivity , as this is the channel you will use to connect your phone to the system. This way you can play music without the need for additional media such as a CD, and you won't need more threads to confuse you.
Many high-performance audio multimedia systems are equipped with an internal operating system , so you can install and access various applications . You can download the application for your favorite radio, for example, thus being able to listen to your favorite shows even in areas with a weak radio signal.
It would be a good idea to find out how they will be accessed and displayed on the display. In order not to be distracted while driving, it is recommended to buy a touch control display, and to have your favorite applications on the homepage .
HD or satellite radio
Most cars on the market have an AM / FM radio through which you can catch local radio stations. However, some drivers may want an improvement, and thus opt for an HD radio that will greatly improve the sound quality of local radios.
If quality sound is a priority for you, a car multimedia system with a built-in HD radio is the right choice. HD radio makes improvements in the way AM and FM waves are transmitted. It offers incredible sound quality compared to a normal radio.
In addition, if you are a hardworking traveler, and always travel long distances by car, you may want to be able to listen to your favorite radio stations in the area from anywhere.
Satellite radio , like satellite or cable television at home, offers listeners hundreds of radio channels with music, sporting events, weather or interesting talk, and lots of entertainment.
Especially the top models of car multimedia systems can do more than play music. These are quite useful, helping you get to your destination by GPS navigation .
Of course, you can always use the navigation system on your phone, which is actually better.
Compared to any navigation system offered by a car multimedia system, applications on your phone such as Google Maps or Waze will always give you better graphics, updated road information, voice commands and directions, and better search destination.
With that in mind, look for a car multimedia system that can offer you the best of both situations, ie one with the MirrorLink, Apple CarPlay or Android Auto function .
What this means? It means that the information that will usually appear on the phone screen, will be projected on the screen of the multimedia system and you will be able to control everything either from the phone or from the system installed in your car.
If you don't want to spend so much on a navigation system, you can opt for another trick. You can always mount your tablet or phone somewhere visible on the dashboard , while, via the Bluetooth connection, the voice instructions will be transmitted directly to the car's audio system.
Car multimedia system: 1DIN or 2DIN
The terms 1DIN and 2DIN in relation to car multimedia systems refer to two classes of systems, one superior to the other.
1DIN car multimedia system
1DIN refers to a basic system with reduced functionality. It is small in size and very similar to the classic on-board radio. It is suitable for older cars, which have limited space on board and where a multimedia system with a larger screen cannot be installed.
There are also more complex 1DIN models, for example a DVD Player for 1DIN car that can have a retractable screen on board.
In most cases, however, you will only have one unit that will allow you to play music or video, but on screens that are located elsewhere, on the headrests for example.
2DIN car multimedia system
2DIN or Double DIN car multimedia systems are equipped with a fairly large screen, with touch control, ie touchscreen , unlike 1DIN units that have control by buttons.
In this respect, the camps are divided. Many drivers appreciate the ease with which they can control the Multimedia System with the help of physical buttons. The truth is that in the absence of a touch screen that is very receptive to stimuli, selecting options by touch can become a real distraction from driving and a reason for frustration.
However, 2DIN units are much more attractive in terms of special functions: GPS navigation, operating system, smartphone screen design, Internet connection, etc.
Bluetooth for calls and music
It is never recommended to make calls or answer the phone when driving. However, rather than using the phone for phone calls, it is better to be able to talk without having to hold the phone to your ear.
The Bluetooth function allows you to connect your phone to the vehicle . Thus, from the multimedia system you will be able to make or take phone calls, and the correspondent's voice will be played through the car's audio system.
Bluetooth technology also lets you play any sound from your phone, your favorite songs, or your favorite podcast without having to connect your phone to the radio with a cable.
Each car multimedia system is equipped with an internal amplifier, which has the role of transmitting the sound to the speakers in the car. To find out the power, look for the RMS index . It is always expressed in watts (W).
Power can be moderate or extended depending on the model. You will be interested in this index especially if the speakers are already built-in. In this case you will need to check the compatibility of the speaker power with the power of the internal amplifier of the multimedia system.
Usually, the RMS power is distributed in 4 channels . The cheap models have a power of 4 X 30 W , but you can also find affordable variants at 4 X 45 W.
If you want a car multimedia system with a higher RMS power, in order to be able to enjoy a clear sound at a higher volume, you must know that devices with extended power are more expensive. You will find values between 4 X 50 W or 4 X 55W .
The control of a car multimedia system can be done by buttons, by touch screen, or by remote control. Buttons and touch screen are the most popular options.
Younger drivers usually prefer a multimedia system with a touch screen, but only if it is very responsive to touch. Otherwise it could confuse you more than helping you quickly access the desired options.
The remote control is a suitable control option for families. Often, when there are children in the back and a song is heard in the car that is not to their liking, they will insistently ask the driver to change the song, and the latter will be distracted from driving.
To avoid this, the rear passengers can use the remote control to access the options available in the multimedia system.
Another useful option is the ability to connect headphones to the multimedia system . Thus, the passenger has the opportunity to hear the desired material at the desired volume, without the driver being distracted or disturbed by it.
We recommend that you buy the best car multimedia system online . You will be able to more easily find a model that is compatible with the dashboard of your car, with the power of the speakers in the car, but also with your personal needs.
Also, online discounts and special offers are more common, which means that you can find the model issued at the best price.
Before buying any kind of product online, carefully analyze the photos and the complete description of the product. It is also useful to take a look at the opinion of other buyers. This way you will be able to know if the product is good for your needs, if it has defects that cannot be seen online, or if it is a purchase that you should not miss.
Now that you have all this information, you are ready to choose the best car multimedia system for you .
The best car multimedia system: recommendations
Taking into account the above tips, analyzing the opinions of buyers and the existing offer, we still recommend some models of car multimedia systems that offer excellent quality / price ratio.
1. JVC KW-M450BT Car Multimedia Player
Digital media receiver with 6.2-inch (6.2 "WVGA) transparent touch screen and built-in Bluetooth (R) wireless technology.
With the JVC Mirroring application installed on your smartphone, you can display the smartphone screen on the JVC receiver screen and you can listen to either your smartphone's audio or the current receiver source.
You can connect two phones full time via Bluetooth, with a secure and simple pairing. Calls to any phone can be received by pressing a key on the handset.
See details and price
2. Sony XAVAX100C Car Multimedia Player
Control and view everything on the 16.3 cm touch screen.
The 10-band equalizer allows you to customize the sound
The Dynamic Reality 2 amplifier gives you 4 x 55 W power, so you can listen to music as loud or slow as you want.
Dynamic Stage Organizer creates virtual speakers on your dashboard
The ergonomic rotary knob gives you easy access to useful functions when you are in the car.
If you have a rear camera installed, you can use it to help you park.
See details and price
3. Alpine ILX-702D System, Multimedia 2 DIN, Apple CarPlay, Android Auto
The player has a 7-inch, high-resolution screen with touch-screen technology, which allows online browsing.
7inch screen on 1 DIN format.
Apple CarPlay gives Iphone users an intuitive way to make calls, use maps, listen to music.
Drive-Assist camera compatibility – With the help of the reversing camera, the vehicle is parked safely.
See details and price
4. Pioneer AVH-A7100BT car multimedia player
The AVH-A7100BT goes from 1-DIN to 7 ′ ′ full car entertainment in seconds.
When the large touch screen opens, this media player allows you to connect to a compatible iPhone or Android phone using a single USB cable from the dashboard in a convenient and secure way.
In addition, this car AV player has Bluetooth, allowing you to stream music or play hands-free via a wireless connection.
See details and price
5. Radio MP5 Player Auto 2Drive 9309
LCD screen – Illuminated front panel – 7 colors.
18 FM stations – Automatic search and save of radio stations;
Equalizer: Pop, Rock, Classic, Flat – Control for Bass, Treble, Fader.
Supported photo format: BMP, GIF, JPG, PNG;
Video input – integrated analog TV.
Subwoofer output – integrated GPS.
See details and price