The stereo is one of your most valuable vehicle accessories that can make driving around town much more pleasant. If your old stereo is dead, or you simply want to upgrade your current one, knowing what to look for in aftermarket car audio systems is essential. Whatever your reason for a new stereo may be, you can expect to get more playback options and better sound quality from an aftermarket unit, as they typically have a better circuit design and superior built-in power, resulting in a richer, cleaner and more detailed sound.
But the sound quality and clarity aren’t the only reasons to upgrade to an aftermarket stereo system. You also get more playback capabilities, such as: WMA./AAC/MP3 playback, iOS and Android support, Satellite radio, Bluetooth connectivity, GPS navigation, DVD playback and much more. Additionally, when shopping for car audio online stores offer two main types of stereos: single DIN and double DIN.
Single DIN units are only compatible with vehicles that have single DIN head units. There are a few exceptions to this rule where a single DIN factory head unit is installed in a dash that can also accept double DIN stereos, but that’s typically not the case. If it seems like your dash can accept a double DIN unit, then you should disassemble it to see if that’s really the case.
Double DIN units, on the other hand, are larger and provide you with more options. You can use a bracket kit to implement a single DIN unit if you find one that fits your needs, and you can add extra components, like a storage compartment or a graphic equalizer. However, there are also some non-standard radio sizes like 1.5 DIN, which are precisely what you’d expect them to be.
Before looking through car audio online stores for your new stereo, consider what matters to you. There are a lot of great units that will fit your budget and provide great sound quality at the same time. But there’s the aesthetics factor and the ease-of-use. Make sure the display is easy to read, and that you can easily dig into the options and menu to ensure you can easily use the stereo while driving. In terms of aesthetics, more expensive units usually look better.
To sum it all up, the best stereo system for your car should be functional and have all the features you need. And yes, it should be visually appealing and properly fit your car’s interior design without overwhelming it.