best single din head unit

8 Best Single DIN Head Units In 2022

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Last Updated on September 27, 2022 by John Robinson

No matter how good the music is, even Sinatra will sound bad if your Single DIN Head Unit isn’t up to the task. Most of us don’t replace our cars as frequently as we replace our phones to keep up with advances in technology. If you’re an audiophile, the first thing you should do is upgrade your stereo’s head unit.

Sony XAV-AX8000

Modern drivers are increasingly choosing single-DIN radio systems because of their ability to fit into almost any dashboard. From Bluetooth streaming to CD playback, these basic but effective car stereos offer a wide range of entertainment options. The head unit serves as the primary control device for your car stereo system. You must first stream it from your smartphone or radio to the head unit to listen to music. It cannot be easy to choose the best single din head unit because of the many options.

You’ll get more out of your car stereo with a single din unit. It is possible to fit these new technologies into almost any dashboard without difficulty. For your convenience, we’ve examined the eight best single DIN head units with a wide range of connectivity options, improved audio quality, a simple user interface, and an integrated EQ. No kidding, these products are the royalties from the car music industry!

Quick Shopping Tips

Features: Your car’s dashboard will look more upscale and refined with a stylish head unit. However, more about performance than aesthetics must not be overlooked. Playing music from a portable player is easier with an auxiliary input and a USB port. A USB port is used to charge a mobile device while connected to your head unit.

A built-in amplifier: Amplifiers are standard equipment in most single-din headphone amplifiers. The typical power output per channel is only around 14 watts, but that may be sufficient for some users. Single din head units with up to 18 watts per channel are also available.

Display Quality: Today, many people are looking for multimedia car stereos, and a high-resolution picture and a responsive touchscreen is essential. It’s not so much about the screen’s size as its functionality, so don’t let that deter you. The most important thing is that the picture and touchscreen are high quality. If your touchscreen is unresponsive or freezes when you try to change it, you’ve got a serious problem.

Audio Modes & Playback Formats: There are so many different audio sources and formats that we don’t even notice them. There are a variety of common audio formats supported by head units. Before making a purchase, confirm that you know which ones they are. Another consideration is the audio mode or connectivity options. Everyone has a favorite method of connecting to the internet. 

Best Single Din Head Unit at a Glance:

  1. Pioneer MVH-S310BT
  2. Sony XAV-AX8000
  3. JVC KD-X260BT
  4. Kenwood Bluetooth
  5. Pioneer AVH-3500NEX
  6. Kenwood KDC-BT34
  7. Alpine UTE-73BT
  8. Sony DSX-A410BT

The Best Single DIN Head Unit You can Buy Today


Pioneer MVH-S310BT
Pioneer MVH-S310BT (Image credit: Amazon)

1. Pioneer MVH-S310BT

best overall single din head unit

SPECIFICATIONS

Supported Internet Services: Pandora, Spotify | Compatible Devices: Smartphone | Control Method: Touch App | Number of Channels: 4

REASONS TO BUY

Can connect to both iPhone and android

Works with Spotify

Works with Pandora

REASONS TO AVOID

May not have mane ports

No built-in microphone

Pioneer’s MVH-S310BT is our top pick for the best overall single din head unit. An excellent high-quality stereo that works with a wide range of phones is the Pioneer MVH-S310BT. In addition, it’s possible to connect it directly to Spotify or Pandora, eliminating the need for a smartphone. The Pioneer MVH-main S310BT’s issue is that it doesn’t have many features that people expect from a stereo.

For starters, it lacks a microphone. Although it is advertised as a hands-free calling device, the Pioneer S310BT isn’t capable of doing so. To converse with the person who has called you, you must still hold your phone or speak. It’s a disservice to the term “hands-free” to promote this, and it should be avoided. One more drawback of the Pioneer MVH-S310BT is the shortage of audio inputs and outputs.

Those who want to use their speaker to connect to various devices will be disappointed by the Pioneer MVH-lack S310BT’s multi-device compatibility. With this in mind, it is a great option for those looking for an affordable Bluetooth headset. The Pioneer MVH-S310BT stereo system is an excellent choice if you want a basic stereo system. It has excellent sound quality, is simple to use, and directly links to services like Spotify or Pandora.

User’s Reviews

This is what user of this stereo have to say.

Although the picture of the product shows red it is blue. But the quality makes up for that. The sound, look, and feel is amazing! I haven’t got the app that works with it to work yet or get my steering controls working yet but everything else is working great! Very responsive and the microphone that comes with it works well haven’t had an issue with anything yet!

Sony XAV-AX8000
Sony XAV-AX8000 (Image credit: Amazon)

2. Sony XAV-AX8000

best single din floating head unit

SPECIFICATIONS

Supported Internet Services: Pandora | Compatible Devices: Smartphones, speakers | Control Method: Touch | Number of Channels: 4

REASONS TO BUY

Simple buttons controls

WebLink Cast7 compatible

Smarter driving with intelligent voice control

REASONS TO AVOID

May Doesn’t connect to CarPlay

It may be pricey

With the XAV-8.95-inch AX8000’s touchscreen, Sony has jumped ahead of the pack. It’s loaded with Sony’s newest features and is designed to compete with units like the Pioneer and Alpine. If you’re strapped for cash, this might not be the best option for you, but if you want to bring your car’s dash and stereo up to today’s newest models, this is the way to do it at an affordable price.

Additionally, the LCD touchscreen appeared to be quite sturdy. It is approximately 3/4′′ in diameter (20mm). Tilt, depth, and height are all controlled by a hefty mounting mechanism on the back of the screen. As stated in the specifications, the tilt angle is 10 degrees, the depth adjustment is between 40 and 60mm, and the height adjustment is between 40 and 60mm. To get the screen where and how you want it, you’ll need to use these tools when you install it.

Next, Sony went with a single DIN chassis to power the large screen. These practices have gained popularity in recent years because they’re more versatile. They’re smaller, lighter, and just as powerful. This best single din floating head unit is one of my favorite installations, so having a condensed sony single-DIN chassis makes it easier to get the job done.

User’s Reviews

This is what user of this stereo have to say.

This was to replace the stock radio in my old work truck so I could have the benefit of bluetooth without spending a lot of money. I was surprised at how much better the sound was even with the original stock speakers. Bluetooth works great as well and I am now hands free while driving.

JVC KD-X260BT
JVC KD-X260BT (Image credit: Amazon)

3. JVC KD-X260BT

best budget single din head unit

SPECIFICATIONS

Supported Internet Services: Pandora, IHeartRadio, Spotify | Compatible Devices: Smartphones, speakers | Control Method: App, Remote | Number of Channels: 2

REASONS TO BUY

WebLink Cast7 Compatible

Cutting Edge Voice Control Technology

Dynamic Stage Organizer

REASONS TO AVOID

No Video Output

Lacks Saturation Controls

There is no better JVC offering for the best budget single din head unit with Bluetooth functionality. The JVC KD-X260BT will stream your favorite content, even if you don’t get a fold-out screen or other advanced features. In addition to an LCD screen and USB port, this cutting-edge in-car digital media system has an AM/FM tuner and much more. There are even radio presets available.

A remote control ensures that your passengers can easily change the music without obstructing the dashboard. The 13-band equalizer provides sensational audio quality as well. The JVC radio has Bluetooth 3.0 certification and supports hands-free calling. You can also get a hands-free car kit to make it easier to take phone calls while driving.

Because of the JVC radio’s A2DP profile system, you’ll stream high-quality audio from virtually any mobile device. Basic remote control features such as pause, play, and more are available via Bluetooth. Intelligent noise reduction is also supported. The JVC KD-X260BT lets you listen to Android music on your phone or tablet via USB. It allows you to listen to music stored on your Android device.

User’s Reviews

This is what user of this stereo have to say.

Really nice Bluetooth head unit. Sounds quality for my Honda Civic is great. I replaced my speakers and headunit in one take. Easy installation for me and I’m a 30yr old woman with no experience.

Kenwood Bluetooth
Kenwood Bluetooth (Image credit: Amazon)

4. Kenwood Bluetooth

best bluetooth single din head unit

SPECIFICATIONS

Supported Internet Services: Pandora | Compatible Devices: Smartphones, Speakers | Control Method: Remote | Number of Channels: 4

REASONS TO BUY

Easy to install

The great value of money

Full-featured easy to use

REASONS TO AVOID

No plug and play

The USB input may be faulty

This best BlueTooth single din head unit has a lot of control over the sound quality, which is impressive. There are 13 EQ bands, and six built-in presets. The Kenwood Bluetooth USB MP3 WMA AM/FM’s intriguing feature is that it can simultaneously connect to two phones. It is ideal for people who travel with friends and don’t want to deal with the hassle of disconnection and reconnection of their phones. Aside from that, the Kenwood has a decent number of ports.

Speakers, phones, and subwoofers can all be connected via the device’s front-facing USB port and two auxiliary inputs. But it’s not the most powerful stereo. It isn’t the speaker for you if you’re looking for a stereo that will rumble the streets as you drive through them. The Kenwood Bluetooth USB MP3 WMA AM/FM is an excellent all-purpose speaker for those who don’t need a lot of power but still want a good sound.

Technology features such as support for Apple products are included. It is also capable of playing back Android music via USB. This unit has a sound-reconstruction system. With this technology, low-bit-rate audio files can be enhanced.

User’s Reviews

This is what user of this stereo have to say.

I installed this stereo about 2 months ago in my 02’ Honda Accord. LED is great in both day time or night, Bluetooth connectivity is quick and Smooth & the difference in my stock speaker sound/quality is seriously impressive!
5/5 stars across the board 🙂 Highly recommended!

Pioneer AVH-3500NEX
Pioneer AVH-3500NEX (Image credit: Amazon)

5. Pioneer AVH-3500NEX

best flip out single din head unit

SPECIFICATIONS

Supported Internet Services: Pandora, SiriusXM | Compatible Devices: Smartphone, speaker | Control Method: N/A | Number of Channels: 4

REASONS TO BUY

Large and responsive touchscreen display

Fast Boot-up Time

Bluetooth Hands-Free Calling quality is great

REASONS TO AVOID

Weblink is quite slow

No HDMI Input

For those who prefer a single din stereo, the Pioneer AVH-3500nex comes with a 7-inch motorized clear resistive display. There are no issues with the motorized display. The display is beautiful and responsive to your commands and gestures, making it a pleasure. There is a good chance you will use this Pioneer device if you have ever used a smartphone.

This wiring harness is so easy to install that it’s nearly incomprehensible. This is a huge advantage for people who don’t want to pay someone else. This best flip-out single din head unit has a slew of wires running throughout it. You can connect your music via the USB input on the device’s back. Bluetooth, a steering-wheel-mounted microphone, and power wiring round out the list of connections.

With three sets of audio and video outputs for each of your front and back speakers, you can also connect your headrest. Naturally, you won’t be limited to making selections on this screen. You’ll also watch your favorite movies, television shows, and other video content as an added perk. Single DIN unit top slides out of a concealed cubby when not in use, giving it a clean, minimalist look without sacrificing screen space or performance.

User’s Reviews

This is what user of this stereo have to say.

It’s sending sound to a 1000 watt Rockford Fosgate amp that I also Amazond , driviving 16 Eclipse 3 way , 2 JBL 6 by 9” and two JBL 14 inch subs. Sounds really great! CarPlay works great ! Only problem, I might need a hearing specialist ????

Kenwood KDC-BT34
Kenwood KDC-BT34 (Image credit: Amazon)

6. Kenwood KDC-BT34

best single din head unit for sound quality

SPECIFICATIONS

Supported Internet Services: Pandora, SiriusXM, Internet Radio, Spotify | Compatible Devices: Smartphone | Control Method: remote | Number of Channels: 4

REASONS TO BUY

Easy to install

Excellent sound quality

Great budget media player

REASONS TO AVOID

Bluetooth connectivity is a hit or miss

Can’t see the screen properly during day time

KDC-BT34 is the best single din head unit for sound quality from Kenwood, and it’s one of the best in the industry at the moment. In addition to a large 1.5-line display, this radio has many other impressive features. Its Bluetooth connectivity, which can connect up to five devices, makes it ideal for music mixing. You can also easily switch between phones with it.

Adjusting the stereo’s basic settings will be a breeze using the smartphone app or remote control. Drive and graphic equalizers are also included, fine-tuning the sound output. Wire harnesses are not included with this head unit, so you need to purchase one separately. It does not come with a built-in antenna, but you can pick one up for a reasonable price somewhere nearby.

A metallic box protects this head unit. An attractive, high-quality plastic controls the front of the vehicle. With an AM/FM radio, the Kenwood KDC-BT34 is well-suited for music listening on the go. Having a car head unit with a removable faceplate provides the ultimate level of security. The Kenwood KDC-BT34 has a detachable faceplate for increased security. The display on this head unit is 13 digits. Allows you to view, track information and control various settings and functions.

User’s Reviews

This is what user of this stereo have to say.

I always have liked Kenwood car stereos in the past. This one didn’t disappoint. Don’t expect a ton of power for this unit (in others words, you won’t wake up the whole block with it). It has reasonable power output. I put this in my son’s car… now I’m thinking I’ll have to get one for my car.

Alpine UTE-73BT
Alpine UTE-73BT (Image credit: Amazon)

7. Alpine UTE-73BT

best alpine single din head unit

SPECIFICATIONS

Supported Internet Services: Pandora | Compatible Devices: Smartphone | Control Method: Touch | Number of Channels: 4

REASONS TO BUY

Pandora support

Compatible with iPhone, iPod

Easy to stream audio

REASONS TO AVOID

Bluetooth connectivity is a hit or miss

Can’t see the screen properly during day time

With the best Alpine’s UTE-73BT  single din head unit, you have complete control over the sound quality of your hands-free phone calls. To ensure that every call is clear, you can adjust the microphone gain, phone output, and ringtone volume. In addition, you can make and receive high-quality phone calls and listen to music using Bluetooth’s advanced wireless technology, audio streaming, and FLAC support. The Alpine UTE-73BT Bluetooth steering wheel controls make it easy to use your car’s Bluetooth system. This gadget has made your life a lot easier, and you can keep your eyes on the road to adjust the volume or skip tracks on your phone.

Thanks to the new high-contrast LCD, you’ll always read the screen, even in sunlight. The rotary knob makes it simple to control your music, whether listening to CDs or streaming music from your smartphone or tablet. It’s easy to bring a friend along by plugging their portable media player into the auxiliary input on the front panel. The 24-Bit DAC in this single-din car stereo ensures crystal clear digital media sources. Playing FLAC (Free Lossless Audio Codec) files via USB provides an even more accurate listening experience because of its three-band parametric EQ and high-pass/low-pass crossover. All music genres are catered to with the Alpine UTE-73BT’s superior audio quality.

The UTE-73BT from Alpine is the best way to control Pandora. This device lets you listen to your favorite Pandora stations right from your smartphone, regardless of the model. Thanks to the thumbs up/thumbs down buttons and quick search features, you can easily find the music you like. Your Pandora connection will provide you with the best audio quality possible with Alpine’s DSP-Sound Expansion circuitry.

User’s Reviews

This is what user of this stereo have to say.

Almost nobody listens to CD’s any longer. Almost everything is streamed or stored in your phone. This was a perfect upgrade for me. No more using a Bluetooth FM transmitter. Even phone calls come in clear with my windows down.

Sony DSX-A410BT
Sony DSX-A410BT (Image credit: Amazon)

8. Sony DSX-A410BT

best sony single din head unit

SPECIFICATIONS

Supported Internet Services: Pandora | Compatible Devices: Smartphone | Control Method: Touch | Number of Channels: 4

REASONS TO BUY

Decent features, easy to install

Compact size

Easily connect with BlueTooth

REASONS TO AVOID

It may not work well with USB

Unusable with diesel

The last name on our list is yet another best sony single din head unit. If you haven’t found the perfect single din head unit for your vehicle yet, take a look at this Sony option. In addition to Bluetooth, the Sony DSX-A410BT has USB and AUX ports for wired connections. In addition, it can be used to stream music wirelessly from your smartphone. It’s also possible to use hands-free voice calling with a second phone. Using voice control, the Sony DSX-A410BT can perform various tasks.

The Sony DSX-A410BT has a maximum output power of 45 watts, spread across four channels. Your single-din head unit will allow you to connect four speakers: one for each side of your vehicle. The Sony DSX-A410BT comes with a free Alphasonik earbud, great for making phone calls. The Sony DSXA410BT is an excellent choice for a direct replacement stereo with Bluetooth connectivity at a low price. It even has a built-in four-channel amplifier that boosts the bass and provides excellent sound.

Compared to similarly priced head units, this one has more connectivity options, such as dual Bluetooth, USB, and AUX. DAB functionality is missing, but this model’s successor will have this feature. However, the newer model has a higher price tag, and not everyone needs DAB. For the most part, the Sony DSXA410BT is a great all-around single-din head unit. Despite its low price, this device is packed with features and delivers high-quality sound tailored to your needs. Its minimalist design makes it an ideal OEM replacement because it isn’t obtrusive.

User’s Reviews

This is what user of this stereo have to say.

Good radio, sound is clean and load, buy this radio and u would save money because u don’t have to buy a amp.

Conclusion

Best Single DIN head units come in a variety of styles to fit your needs. Streaming music and hands-free phone calls have become commonplace in today’s vehicles, but many drivers also need a DAB radio tuner, additional speakers, and more outputs. If you’re in the market for a single din car stereo, remember to check back here to tell you what to look for.

The Pioneer MVH-S310BT Single Din is our pick for the most straightforward of the head units we tested. In terms of cost, this is not the cheapest. We’d recommend this head unit if you want an AM/FM radio in your car stereo and don’t care about anything else. Is this your machine if you don’t care about streaming or satellite radio, or if you have a smartphone app

The Kenwood KDC-BT34 CD/BT Audio Receiver also appears to be the best Android-compatible Single DIN head unit. Its features appear primarily targeted at Android users, but it could be a good option for iOS users. Bluetooth and satellite radio are among the many standard features that allow you to enjoy your music, despite the lack of a CD player. You can’t go wrong with any single-din Bluetooth car stereos we’ve recommended on our list.

Frequently Asked Questions

Is there a standard size for single din radios?

No, not all single-din radios are the same in terms of size. For this reason, it’s important to make sure you get one that will fit your vehicle. Measure your current head unit before you go shopping for a new one for the best results.

How loud will my speakers get if I buy a new head unit?

There is less distortion in new speakers, and they can handle more power and play louder. The new speakers can’t deliver their full potential when used with the factory radio. The loudness of a speaker can only be achieved if it is being driven by sufficient power.

Which brand is superior, Pioneer or Kenwood?

When compared to Pioneer and other subwoofers, Kenwood’s are the best. Because of this, if you use these subwoofers in your sound system, you’ll be transported to a place of musical bliss! As a result, consumers keep turning to this brand to improve the sound quality of their systems.

How can I tell if my head unit will fit?

In order to replace a 4-inch-tall head unit, a double DIN head unit is the best option, while a single or 1.5-inch-tall head unit will need a mounting kit. Replace a 3-inch-tall head unit with a 1.5- or a single-DIN unit with the appropriate kit if 1.5 DIN or single-DIN.

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