The double din head unit is more desirable than a single din head unit as you will have access to additional functionality due to the larger screen size. They also look more aesthetically pleasing and choosing the best available will add value to the car.
The best double din head unit is the Touchscreen Pioneer AVH4200NEX, which includes a motorized display, built-in Bluetooth and many other features.
Most aftermarket double din stereos have an elegant LED display to control the system. OEM double din head units can be rather dull looking with no touchscreen display, lacking additional functionality and generally not enjoyable to use.
Table of Contents
- The Best Double Din Head Unit
- 1. Pioneer AVH4200NEX Double Din Head Unit
- 2. Kenwood Excelon DNX996XR Double Din Navigation
- 3. Alpine ILX-107 Touchscreen Double Din Stereo
- 4. Sony XAV-AX100 Double Din Receiver
- 5. Pioneer AVH-290BT Double Din Head Unit
- 6. Corehan Android Double Din Stereo
- 7. Kenwood DDX773BH Double Din Car Stereo
- 8. Jensen VX7020 Double Din Head Stereo
- 9. ATOTO A6 Android Double Din Head Unit
- 10. BOSS Audio BV9362BI Double Din Radio
- Double Din Head Unit Buying Guide
Double Din Head Unit Comparison
|Double Din Head Unit||Type||Power Output|
|Pioneer AVH4200NEX||Premium||50W X 4 Channels|
|Kenwood Excelon DNX996XR||Premium||50W X 4 Channels|
|Alpine ILX-107||Premium||50W x 4 Channels|
|Sony XAV-AX100||Premium||55W x 4 Channels|
|Pioneer AVH-290BT||Mid Range||45W x 4 Channels|
|Corehan Android 8||Mid Range||50W x 4 Channels|
|Kenwood DDX773BH||Mid Range||50W x 4 Channels|
|Jensen VX7020||Mid Range||40W x 4 Channels|
|ATOTO A6 Android||Budget||45W x 4 Channels|
|BOSS Audio BV9362BI||Budget||80W x 4 Channels|
Features that are desirable with a double din head unit include Bluetooth, USB or Aux input, WiFi, touch screen, reversing camera, navigation and much more. The latest stereos are slowly becoming mini computers located within your dash.
If you are wanting to take your audio to the next level, an upgraded stereo is a major requirement. They allow for additional outputs, channels and other factors that help improve sound quality. OEM head units struggle to accommodate other speaker configurations, which can be a problem when installing additional speakers.
Car audio brands are releasing new head units multiple times a year and we are dedicated to bring the latest that they have to offer. Below is a list of the best double din head units that include a range of functionality and the latest technology.
The Best Double Din Head Unit
1. Pioneer AVH4200NEX Double Din Head Unit
The Pioneer brand are market leaders in the double din stereo category with head units available for a range of budgets. The AVH4200NEX is a premium stereo that includes an internal amplifier with 14 watts RMS and 50 watts x 4 channels.
For those that do not have a Bluetooth car kit installed, the AVH4200NEX has you covered with built-in Bluetooth. Not only does it allow hands free calling for two phones but it will also allow for wireless audio streaming.
Features of the Pioneer AVH4200NEX include:
- 7 inch motorized display
- Siri Eyes Free, Apple Carplay & Android Auto
- Built-in Bluetooth for hands free & audio streaming
- 14 Watts RMS & 50 x 4 channels
- Spotify and AppRadio compatibility
- DVD/CD receiver
The only drawback of the AVH4200NEX is that it doesn’t have navigation. However, you could opt for the more expensive AVIC-8200NEX Navigation Receiver model or use your smartphone to display the maps via Apple Carplay or Android Auto.
Overall, the Pioneer AVH4200NEX is the best double din head unit for the money with excellent Bluetooth connectivity and all the latest technology. Pioneer is an audio brand you can rely on for build quality and plenty of documentation for peace of mind.Check it Out
If you are looking for a double din head unit with navigation, the Kenwood Excelon DNX996XR is the best option. It is Kenwood’s latest and highest performing stereo they produce and uses the Garmin navigation system for directions.
Features of the Kenwood Excelon DNX996XR include:
- 6.8 inch HD (1280×720) display
- Dual phone pairing via Bluetooth
- Apple CarPlay and Android Auto compatible
- Reverse camera parking guidelines
- Built-in WiFi and HD radio tuner
- Accepts DVD and a range of media file types
- 50 watts x 4 channels with 6 pre-amps
In terms of the navigation, as it uses the Garmin navigation system, it features everything you would expect. From maps for the US, Canada, Mexico, Puerto Rico and U.S. Virgin Islands to 6 millions different points of interest. It truly is the best double din head unit with navigation and will not disappoint.
As it is the most expensive stereo within this article, you should also expect excellent audio quality. The Kenwood Excelon DNX996XR offers everything you require to perfect your in-car audio, which includes a 13-bang graphic EQ, 3 way crossover, gold-plated pre-amps and much more.
Overall, it is the ultimate double din head unit but the price will make it unsuitable for many. Alternatively, you can opt for the previous model knows as the DNX995S.
3. Alpine ILX-107 Touchscreen Double Din Stereo
Alpine are a premium audio brand and the ILX-107 is their flagship model in terms of looks and performance. It comes with an expensive price tag but the features and superior build quality make it a worthwhile investment.
The Alpine ILX-107 double din head unit is very much targeted towards Apple products such as the iPhone. Software included such as Apple CarPlay can run via wireless connection and is very easy to use once you start getting used to it.
Other features of the Alpine ILX-107 Stereo include:
- 7 inch touchscreen
- 50 Watts x 4 channels with 3 pre-outs
- Built-in amplifier
- Apple CarPlay and TuneIt App
- 9 band parametric EQ and MediaXpander
- iDatalink in order to keep factory buttons/controls
- Steering wheel and reverse camera ready
- Apple Maps Satellite Navigation
Excluding the expensive price, as a premium double din stereo, it is a great all rounder with both the looks and features. If you have an Android smartphone, you may want to choose an alternative as this stereo only has Apple Carplay.Check it Out
4. Sony XAV-AX100 Double Din Receiver
Sony is one of the biggest brands in the world and their audio technology is highly reputable. In terms of car stereos, Sony wouldn’t be the first “go to” unit you would pick but the XAV-AX100 is highly popular and provides excellent compatibility with both Android and Apple smartphones.
The touchscreen is 6.4 inches in size with responsive touch controls to use functions from the navigation, music playlists, phone calls and much more. It is also the only double din with a rotary dial, which is a very nice touch.
Other features of the Sony XAV-AX100 Touchscreen Stereo include:
- 55 x 4 channels and dynamic reality amplifier
- 6.4 inch touchscreen display
- Apple CarPlay and Android Auto
- Rear reverse camera ready
- 10 band equalizer
- Dynamic stage organizer
- Bluetooth hands free
The Sony brand is one that you can trust and although you pay a premium price, it is worth the extra. Not only is it compatible with both Apple and Android smartphones, it also provide a range of unique features that are not available with the alternatives. Sony have also gone to great lengths to ensure that you can achieve the best sound quality too.Check it Out
5. Pioneer AVH-290BT Double Din Head Unit
Pioneer is one of the leading brands when it comes to a double din head unit but the majority come with an expensive price tag. However, the Pioneer AVH-290BT is an affordable model that the brand offer.
With a stylish 6.2 inch LED display, the Pioneer AVH-290BT is a fully touch screen head unit with many features. The design of this particular double din stereo is in accordance to those of premium car manufacturer cars but at a tenth of the price.
Features of the Pioneer AVH-290BT Touchscreen includes:
- 6.2 inch LED touchscreen
- 45 watt x 4 channels
- Bluetooth connectivity for hands free calls and audio streaming
- Built in equalizer with 5 bands
- Camera input for reversing camera
- 50 watt x 4 channels
- Siri Eyes Free
- Spotify and AppRadio compatibility
- CD, USB, AUX
For those that are on a budget, this double din head unit is the best affordable option that comes from the Pioneer brand. The 6.2 inch touchscreen and other features make it a great replacement for older OEM stereos.Check it Out
6. Corehan Android Double Din Stereo
The Corehan Android operated double din head unit has a large 6.95 inch LCD display and offer the most amount of functionality. The sleek design of this stereo is very similar to a tablet, which will look great in the majority of cars.
Features of the Corehan Android Stereo include:
- Quad Core 1.8 GHz CPU
- Latest Android 8 operating system
- 2GB RAM and 32GB ROM
- Support 3G dongle, WiFi and WiFi hot spots
- Mirror Link to display smartphone screens
- USB Connect for Android devices
- Supports steering wheel buttons
- 1080P video playing and compatibility for reversing camera
- GPS navigation
One of the most unique features offered is the ability to connect an OBD2 scanner. This allows you to monitor the performance of your vehicle at anytime, which is displayed upon the screen. In terms of the visual display, the 1080P LCD display with dual USB support makes watching movies in the car far more enjoyable.
Overall, this Coreham unit is the best android double din stereo you can buy every feature you can expect to see already installed on the unit.Check it Out
7. Kenwood DDX773BH Double Din Car Stereo
Kenwood (who are owned by JVC) are known for providing high quality audio and this can be seen with numerous unique features. The DDX773BH is also one of the nicest looking double din stereos on the market today with its limited edge touchscreen display.
Other features of the Kenwood DDX773BH include:
- DVD/CD receiver (can also play movies via USB)
- Built in iPod/iPhone control as well as Android USB support
- 6 channel outputs
- 50 watts x 4 (MOSFET Power IC)
- Bluetooth for music streaming and hands free calls with dual phone connection
- Built in equalizer with a huge 13 different bands
As reversing cameras are becoming more popular, the need for double din head units to support them are required. This Kenwood stereo will automatically adjust the display to the reversing camera when the reverse gear is selected.
The Kenwood ticks every box in terms of what a double din radio should offer. The only thing missing is navigation, but the ability to mirror your smartphone to the device and play the audio through the stereo is perfect.Check it Out
8. Jensen VX7020 Double Din Head Stereo
The Jensen VX7020 is a US made double din radio that is very popular across America and Canada. Although the display of the Jensen stereo is slightly smaller than the others, it provides more user friendly buttons on the left of the head unit.
Features of the Jensen VX7020 Bluetooth Head Unit include:
- Bluetooth connectivity for hands free calling and audio streaming
- 160 watt via 40 watt x 4 channels
- Adjustable User Interface colors and backgrounds
- CD, AUX, USB and SD Card inputs
- 6VRMS RCA line output
- Support for multi functional steering wheels
- Built-in navigation
The Jensen VX7020 is a top rated double din head unit and there is not a lot that it cannot do. To increase your confidence of buying this head unit, Jensen offer a years warranty. Compared to premium double din head units with similar features, this VX7020 model provides excellent value for money.Check it Out
9. ATOTO A6 Android Double Din Head Unit
ATOTO is a brand that specializes in Android double din head units with the A6 model using the stable Marshmallow operating system. Unlike the Corehan alternative, the ATOTO A6 is available at a more affordable price tag.
Features of the ATOTO A6 Android Stereo include:
- Continuous firmware updates
- 1024X600 TFT-LCD display
- Built-in GPS module and pre-installed Google maps
- Compatible with steering wheel controls
- 4 x 45 watts and 4 pre-outs
- Smartphone (Android/iOS) mirroring/casting
- Backup camera input
The brand also offer various upgraded models but if you are on a tight budget, the A6 model is offers all the functionality you’ll ever need.
Overall, the ATOTO A6 Android double din head unit is an excellent all-rounder than combines performance and value for money. It performs as well as the premium devices but doesn’t come with the popular audio branding, which may put some enthusiasts off.
10. BOSS Audio BV9362BI Double Din Radio
The car audio brand BOSS Audio targets the budget stereo category but that does not mean the head unit lacks features. The BV9362BI model even comes with a three year warranty for peace of mind, which no other cheap alternative provide.
Other features of the BOSS Audio BV9362BI include:
- 80 watt x 4 channels with built-in equalizer
- Plays DVD, CD, USB, SD, AUX and smartphones
- Bluetooth hands free calling and music streaming
- Video, front, rear and sub pre amp outputs
- 3 years warranty
The 6.2 inch touch screen monitor is fairly responsive and the user interface is fairly intuitive with clear call to action buttons. Unlike the single din unit head unit by Boss, this model supports rear camera view which is automatic as well as support the buttons on your steering wheel.
With the Boss BV9362B1 double din radio, you are able to add up to 3 amps for additional front, rear and subwoofers channels. It is one of the best affordable options and it will certainly give your vehicle a modern touch.Check it Out
Double Din Head Unit Buying Guide
Upgrading your factory double din stereo is an easy yet effective way of increasing the value of your car. It will completely modernize an older car that uses an older style head unit and allow you to use features such as Apple Carplay and Android Auto.
Replacing your head unit also allows you to install additional speakers via the extra channel outputs. There is a wide range of benefits when installing a new head unit and with the latest technology, they can completely transform your driving experience.
To help you make an informed buying decision, we have produced the below buying guide regarding double din head units.
One of the best features of the latest stereos is the compatibility with your smartphone. If you use a smart device that uses the iOS operating system, you have Apple Carplay whereas Android users have Android Auto.
Both have similar features and enable you to use many of the features of your smartphone upon the double din head unit. This include navigation, hands free calling, sending and receiving messages, mirroring and so much more.
Both Apple Carplay and Android Auto are premium features but its worth paying the extra due to the amount of additional functionality.
If you would rather not use Apple Carplay or Android Auto, there are many other ways to play your own music. The most user friendly option is by using a wireless Bluetooth connection, which you may already be using for hands-free calling. Other alternatives include the use of a AUX cord, USB or even a SD card.
There is a common argument to say that with a Bluetooth connection, you lose out on sound quality. This is due to the fact that Bluetooth input for audio signals is that it comes in the form of a processed analog signal. This means it has been manipulated in order for the audio to be sent via a wireless Bluetooth connection.
Although this may be true, you will hardly even notice the difference if there is a loss in sound quality. Bluetooth technology is constantly improving and the performance is far better than it was 10 years ago.
Most OEM stereos will not have many output channels, which makes upgrading your audio fairly difficult. Anything from powerful car subwoofers that require a specific channel for additional watts to multiple channels for additional car speakers.
If you are planning to improve car audio in the near future, you will want to ensure that the stereo you purchase is capable with the additional outputs.
Reversing Camera Input
The benefit of a double din head unit is the fact that it has a much larger display compared with other units. This makes viewing video footage such as movies or output from your reversing camera a highly desirable feature.
Not every stereo has this functionality but some can automatically switch displays when the car is backing up. If you want this functionality, you can use an aftermarket camera and connect it to your double din head unit.
This will require some wiring and therefore we recommend investing in the best backup camera you can get your hands on so its a worth the effort of installing it.
Android is a highly desirable operating system to use for double din stereos. It is popular as it’s familiar to those with an Android phone, has a simplified user interface and can be updated to the latest firmware much easier than other operating systems.
For those that are tech savvy, you can even implement your own software and apps into the device but this is only recommended for those that know what they are doing.
Navigation that is integrated into the double din head unit is an essential feature for many. Although you can use your smartphone for directions, it will never be as reliable due to signal issues and the fact it may run out of battery.
Stereos that have navigation included will often cost more but this is due to the integration of the GPS module and other related components. Some manufacturers such as Kenwood use the Garmin system for navigation output, which is one of the most trusted names in the GPS industry.
Some features to look out for with regards to the navigation include:
- Ability to easily update the maps
- Various displays (2D or 3D and terrain views)
- Lane assistance
- Real time traffic reports
- Spoken street names and speed limits
- Various languages
- Points of interest
- Coverage across multiple states and countries
We strongly advise that you avoid cheap navigation head units as they usually use a poorly designed system. Big brands that have tested their systems thoroughly and have the processing power to handle them are highly recommended.
There are so many people that will damage their dash in order to remove their stereos. We have seen people use knives or screwdrivers down the side, which is a big mistake due to the damage it causes.
We advise that you do not try those methods and instead invest into a pair of radio keys. These simply slot into the standard gaps that all head units will have and allow you to pull it out safely. Depending upon your vehicle, you may need to remove interior parts to gain access in order to locate the radio keys into the slots.
Not every vehicle will have the room to install a double din head unit, which mean that you will require a new dash kit for the installation.
As shown in the image above, the installation kit is designed to fit into the designated area whilst provide adequate space for installing the aftermarket head unit.
For those that plan on installing their double din stereo themselves, check out this tutorial for a helping hand.
The average price for a double din stereo is around $250 but there are two ends to the scale. For those on a budget, there are many packages that provide all the functionality that you require. However, the ability of that stereo to remain loading and running smoothly can be debatable.
Any car audio enthusiast will tell you that it is an expensive hobby to get into. The costs can easily run passed the thousand dollar mark with ease. The more premium examples these days are available with truly remarkable technology.
Using an iPad?
Due to the low cost of an iPad and other tablets, you could even install them instead of a new head unit. An iPad is able to do almost everything a stereo can do and even more by linking it to a 3G/4G network connection.
Rather than using an iPad car mount, you can perform some alterations to the fascia that enables you to mount it appropriately. The popular Mighty Car Mods YouTube Channel did exactly this and the results looked great.
Upgrading your head unit is a fairly simple modification that can make a huge difference. Older vehicles in particular can be instantly introduced to the latest technology that makes driving far more pleasurable and safer.
When upgrading your car audio, installing the best double din head unit is critical. The additional speakers will require specific channels in order to perform as expected because not every OEM stereo will be able to handle extra audio components.
Car audio brands such as Pioneer, Alpine, Kenwood and others are the recommend source for head units. Although expensive, the quality of the head unit and functionality is worth paying the extra and there is usually a variety to choose from.