A Guide to Cutting Edge In-Car Entertainment
If you are on the hunt for a new in-car entertainment system, be prepared for a few surprises, as the level of digital tech empowers manufacturers to create amazing systems that integrate numerous digital platforms. There was once a time when picking a car stereo system was relatively simple; a cassette player and a couple of speakers and that was it. We have come a long way since then and here is a guide to choosing an in-car entertainment system.
In-car entertainment systems comprise of numerous components, such as the following.
- Media Player – This is the central component of the system, with a state-of-the-art unit such as Apple CarPlay that integrates iTunes and your iPhone. You have 4 ports for dashcams, allowing you to have 360 vision of the exterior of your vehicle. You can also receive AM/FM radio, play CDs and DVDs, while also having a couple of USB ports. Touch-screen tech rules with today’s top media players, making for a safer listening experience, with wireless connection for iOS and Android systems.
- Power Amp – A premier in-car sound system must have a power amp to drive those top of the range coaxial speakers; a 4-channel power amp can be installed under the front passenger seat to ramp up the bass. It is possible to run your system without a power amp (the media player has a built-in amp), but if you want serious power, that second amplifier is required.
- Coaxial Speakers – The best set up is to install 4 coaxial speakers; two in the front and two in the back, which brings top-notch surround sound into your car. Brands such as JBL, JL, Kenwood and, of course, Pioneer, are all premier names in the speaker field, with 2,4 and 5-way systems. Prior to ordering in-car entertainment components, you are advised to read the online reviews, as they will reveal any shortcomings. Adding a subwoofer definitely gives the sound more oomph, which can be fitted in the boot section of the vehicle. Click here for 5 things that every car owner should know.
Decide on a Budget
In-car entertainment systems can vary greatly in price; you could spend more than $100,000 if you really wanted to have the very best. The best thing to do is decide how much you are prepared to spend on the system, then search online for a supplier of premier in-car entertainment components. Resist the temptation to buy from a retail outlet, who would install the system, as they charge a lot more than the online supplier. Take all the components to a car stereo installer and they can quote for the installation and that will save you a lot of money.
Read Online Professional Reviews
When a particular in-car entertainment component comes onto the market, it will be seriously reviewed by professional reviewers who really put the item through its paces. This is the best way to determine the quality of the component, as if there are any issues, they will be revealed in the review. In the event you are unsure about which components to buy, sign up with an online forum for in-car entertainment and you can ask experts for their advice. There are so many different brands and components that it can seem like a real challenge and asking an expert for their advice is a wise move. If you are worried about buying online, here is some consumer rights information.
This should only be an option if you are fully conversant with vehicle electrics, otherwise leave it to the professionals. It is understandable that you would be reluctant to cut vehicle upholstery to install the speakers and unless you really know what you are doing, it is best left to a professional installer. The components are very expensive and a wrong wiring could blow the component or even set the vehicle on fire. It is best to be safe than sorry regarding the installation of in-car entertainment components.
Once you have done your research and have decided on the components, search online for an established supplier who would have the very best prices. Don’t forget to order an installation kit that contains all the small items that you will need to complete the installation, then you can approach an in-car sound system installer and ask for a quote to install the components.
Most people are happy with a mid-range in-car entertainment system, which offers great sound for a reasonable price and the online supplier offers the best deals.