best single din head unit

The Best Single Din Head Unit 2019

The single din head unit is 4 x 7 inches in size, compared to the larger 7 x 7 inches of a double din head unit. Depending upon the opening available for a stereo within your dash will determine the head unit that you require.

The best single din head unit is the Pioneer AVH-X7800BT, which includes an impressive flip out touchscreen display and outputs for improved sound quality.

OEM stereos are often limited in terms of functionality and don’t look aesthetically pleasing. However, the latest single din stereos offer a range of desirable features such as flip out touchscreens, Bluetooth and various audio inputs.

Best Single Din Head Unit

Single Din Head UnitTouchscreenBluetooth
Pioneer AVH-X7800BTYesYes
Alpine iLX-F309 HALO9YesYes
Pyle PLBT71GYesYes
Alpine CDE-HD149BTNoYes
Pioneer DEH-150MPNoNo
JVC KD-RD87BTNoYes
Kenwood KMM-BT322NoYes
BOSS Audio 616UABNoYes

Upgrading your radio for improved sound quality and bass should be the first audio modification. In order to use hard hitting car subwoofers and a car amplifier, you will need to assess the single din head unit that is installed beforehand.

The number of audio inputs and pre-amp outputs are usually limited with an OEM radio. Having the correct outputs will make the installation far more simplified and allow for additional components to improve the audio.

Below is a list of the best single din head units that will instantly improve sound quality and feature additional functionality.

Pioneer AVH-X7800BT Single Din Head Unit


Pioneer are one of the market leaders when it comes to car audio. Their AVH-X7800BT model is one of their best single din head units they produce and features the desirable flip out display. This functionality provides a 7 inch touchscreen display that allows for easy navigation through the various menus.

This pioneer single din head unit also comes with an external wired microphone for the use of hands free calls using Bluetooth. The quality of in-call speaking is claimed to be as high quality as FM transmission with zero chance of distortion.

Other features of the Pioneer AVH-X7800BT include:

  • Built in DVD receiver
  • Bluetooth connectivity
  • Siri Eyes Free
  • Spotify and AppRadio compatibility
  • CD, USB, AUX
  • 200 watt amplifier and remote
  • 50 watts x 4 channels
  • Front and rear RCA outputs

The touchscreen screen of the AVH-X7800BT is intuitively designed and exactly what is needed. On the right are “call to action” buttons such as setting, phone calls, equalizer and more. When playing music, all the information is displayed in a user friendly way, such as artist, song title, category, timeline and music artwork.

With all this functionality, this head unit also comes with a remote control to navigate around the radio. Of course, being touchscreen, the remote control is only really needed for backseat passengers. Overall, it is the best single din stereo with a flip out screen and nothing comes close in terms of sound quality and design.

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Alpine iLX-F309 HALO9 Single Din Touchscreen


The latest design that many audio brands are adopting is a complete touchscreen media receiver that uses the single din mounting. It comes with a premium price tag but it completely revolutionizes your vehicle.

The Alpine iLX-F309 HALO9 is one of highest performers and includes everything you could ever need. It mounts into the single DIN chassis and is compatible with the majority of aftermarket dash kits.

Features of the Alpine iLX-F309 HALO9 include:

  • Apple CarPlay and Android Auto compatible
  • 9 inch touchscreen display
  • SiriusXM and Bluetooth ready
  • Bass engine SQ and multiple crossover settings
  • Distance guideline display for an aftermarket backup camera

The difference a single din head unit can make such as the Alpine iLX-F309 HALO9 is remarkable. It has every feature you can imagine and beats the majority of OEM stereos that are available from the manufacturer.

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Pyle PLBT71G Single Din Navigation Head Unit

The Pyle PLBT71G is a cheaper touchscreen alternative that has a unique selling point because it is a single din unit that has navigation pre-installed.  The flip out screen is 7 inches and perfect for displaying road maps to the driver.

Unlike other touchscreen single din head units that require Apple CarPlay or Android Auto, this unit has the GPS module integrated for navigation.

Other features of the Pyle PLBT71G Radio include:

  • Bluetooth connectivity for streaming music
  • CD, DVD, USB and AUX input
  • Hands free Bluetooth calling
  • 1 Years free warranty with customer support
  • 4 x 80 watt power output (320 max)

Considering it has navigation and other features, it is still fairly cheap compared to the other flip screen units. However, many will agree that this stereo does not have the luxury feel compared to alternatives such as the Pioneer AVH-X7800BT. However, if you cannot afford the Pioneer, the Pyle PLBT71G is the best option.

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Alpine CDE-HD149BT Single Din Radio

Alpine are another major brand in the car audio industry and their CDE-HD149BT model is a premium single din stereo. It has many features that are designed for those wanting to run multiple audio components and requiring hands-free calling.

Although this single din head unit has been on the market for many years now, it is still a high performing example of what is available.

Other features of the Alpine CDE-HD149BT include:

  • 200 watt power output (50 x 4 channels)
  • RMS power output 18 watts x 4 channels
  • Bluetooth for audio streaming and hands-free calls
  • Pre-amp RCA outputs
  • Built-in equalizer with 9 bands
  • LCD display
  • Includes a 1 year warranty
  • CD, USB and AUX inputs

The design of the Alpine CDE-HD149BT is perfect for the premium older cars where flashy stereos spoil the design. If you are planning a large audio install with many speakers, then this Alpine unit is perfect, as it has all the relevant outputs.

It is the best single din unit without the flip out screen and includes every feature you could want from hands-free calling to a LCD display.

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Pioneer DEH-150MP Single Din Stereo


If you are on a budget but want the best sound quality from your single din stereo, the DEH-150MP is the best option. It has no fancy touchscreen or Bluetooth, it is a basic head unit that is a direct OEM replacement.

It does have one of the most important features, which of course is an AUX input. From an appearance point of view, it is not obtrusive, which is great for classic cars that require an upgrade.

Other features of the Pioneer DEH-150MP Radio include:

  • 200 watt power (50 watts x 4 channels)
  • RMS: 14 watts x 4 channels
  • CD and AUX input
  • Built-in Equalizer setting with bass boosting settings
  • LED Backlight

The power outputs are very similar to the more expensive AVH-X7800BT but it lacks the expensive functionalities. Therefore, if you want a cheap single din head unit that provides high quality sound, the DEH-150MP model by Pioneer is the best option.

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JVC KDRD87BT Bluetooth Single Din Head Unit

JVC are a market leading brand in the audio industry, competing with the likes of Kenwood and Pioneer. The KDRD87BT is their best selling single din head unit that comes with two sets of pre-amp outputs. This means you are able to install a subwoofer and amplifier without the need of additional wiring.

Features of the JVC KD-R888BT radio include:

  • 50 watt x 4 channels
  • RMS 22 watt x 4 channels
  • Bluetooth hands-free calling and music streaming
  • CD, AUX and USB inputs
  • Built in equalizer with 13 bands
  • 2 Sets of 4V pre-amp outputs

Although more expensive than the Pioneer DEH-150MP, it features far more functionality than most other affordable options. Overall, it is an excellent all-round single din head unit that is built by the reputable JVC brand.

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Kenwood KMM-BT322 Single Din Head Unit

One of the most popular single din head units is produced by the reputable Kenwood brand. It combines value for money and performance into a single package with the added benefit of having a smartphone application for controlling the unit.

Kenwood offer the KMM-BT322 model with the choice of having a CD player or not. There is a small price increase but if you require a CD player, it is a great option.

Other features of the Kenwood KMM-BT322 include:

  • Built-in Bluetooth for audio streaming
  • Front AUX port for connecting to your smartphone
  • Variable color illumination
  • 13 band graphic equalizer
  • 50W x 4 output with bass boost
  • Theft deterrent face plate

Unique features such as the ability to pair up to 5 Bluetooth devices, optional CD player and the smartphone application make it very desirable. It is by far one of the most popular head units within this article and for good reason too.

Overall, the Kenwood KMM-BT322 is an excellent all-round single din head unit and a perfect OEM replacement.

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BOSS Audio 616UAB Single Din Radio

The BOSS Audio 616UAB  is an affordable single din head unit that has a lot to offer. Unlike many other cheap units, this features Bluetooth, various audio inputs and an impressive warranty period for peace of mind.

Some of the features of the Boss Audio 616UAB include:

  • 50 watt x 4 channels
  • Built-in equalizer
  • Wireless remote controller
  • USB, SD and AUX but no CD Player
  • Hands-free Bluetooth calling and music streaming
  • Front pre-amp outputs for adding an amp or signal processor
  • Includes a 3 years warranty

Compared to the other cheap single din radios that are on the market, the 616UAB looks stylish and has a better build quality. If you are on a strict budget, this is the cheapest single din stereo that offers much more than the eye can see.

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Single Din Head Unit Buying Guide

Upgrading your stereo not only provides better quality audio but even more outputs, which gives you the opportunity to add more car audio speakers.

Rewind a few years back, there were no such thing as touchscreen single din head unit but now they are the most desirable type.

Replacing your old OEM stereo with the best single din head unit that you can get your hands on is an easy modification. By using a set of removal keys, you can have the two units switched over within minutes.

To help you make an informed buying decision, we have produced the below guide regarding single din head units.

best single din stereo

Bluetooth Connectivity

Bluetooth functionality within most modern vehicles is normal but if you are driving an older car, you will need to make some modification. Upgrading to a head unit that includes Bluetooth connectivity allows you to stream audio and make calls without having to reach for your phone.

This is a big feature that the majority of modern single din stereos include but not every unit will have the ability to make calls. This is due to the fact there will need to be additional wiring for the microphone. However, if this is a feature you desirable, there are many Bluetooth car kits available.

Other Connectivity

As with tape players, most manufacturers are phasing out CD players within their head units. This is to make way for the more desirable Bluetooth method of playing your own music but also AUX, USB and even SD card audio input.

Flip Out Touchscreen

Thanks to modern technology, you can now have the best of both worlds. A single din touchscreen head unit makes use of a motorized display, which is approximately the same size as a double din head unit.

It may come with a premium price tag but the amount of functionality that is available is worth paying the extra. It allows you to use features such as navigation, Android Auto or for the iOS you have Apple CarPlay and much more.

However as a word of warning, we advise that you stay away from the cheap touchscreen units unless they have long warranty periods. If the motorized display were to break, the whole unit would be unusable.

best single din touch screen

Installing a Single Din Head Unit

Installation of a single din is very much the same as the double din alternative. The only tool that you will require are removal keys, which slide down the side of the unit. It’s advised to avoid any other objects as you may cause damage to the dash and the head unit itself. The 10 steps to install the new single din head unit include:

  1. Remove the negative cable from the battery.
  2. Remove any bits of trim surrounding the radio.
  3. Insert the removal keys into the slot and wait until you hear a click.
  4. Slowly pull the head unit out.
  5. Unplug the factory wiring harness and antenna.
  6. Plug in any new wiring into the upgraded head unit.
  7. Place the head unit into the opening.
  8. Connect the negative cable to the battery
  9. Test it is fully functioning and all speakers work
  10. Install any trim surrounding the unit.

It is important to note that not each head unit will use removal keys. Some are bolted in place or may require a new dash kit for the installation.

Antenna Adapter for ISO to DIN

Many aftermarket stereos will require a DIN antenna aerial connector as opposed to the ISO connector. Without this adapter, you will not be able to use your radio but you will still be able to use other inputs. The ISO to Din radio adapter (as shown below) is relatively cheap and often forgotten when installing a new aftermarket radio.

Best Single DIN Radio

Double Din to Single Din Conversion

The disadvantage of a double din head unit is that there is limited storage space within the cockpit. Cars that have a single din head unit will usually have a storage box to store items such as phones or keys.

Switching to a single din radio is relatively simple and involves removing the double din and replacing it with a new faceplate. This will then allow you to insert the single din within its cage into the top section of the faceplate.

Finally you will want to have a storage box that will allow you to keep your personal items such as a phone or your keys.

Choosing between a double din and a single din head unit is purely down to personal preference. It is much harder to switch from single din to double din in the majority of cases and moving to the smaller radio is much easier.

Conclusion

Upgrading your car audio can become an expensive hobby but it’s crucial that you take your time to do some research. Failing to do so can result in poor sound quality and a lack of functionality from your single din head unit.

All of our recommendations cover a broad range of head units and suitable for all budgets. We highly advise sticking to reputable brands as they would have been tested thoroughly and designed to be long lasting.

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