When looking to buy a car stereo system, a wide range of options are available and each option denotes either a Single DIN car stereo or a Double DIN car stereo. Choosing between Single Din Vs Double Din can be a bit confusing.
But don’t worry, here, we’re providing you a quick guide that will help you in understanding what are the Single DIN and Double DIN car stereos and what is the difference between Single Din and Double Din. This way you will know which one is more suitable for you and your vehicle.
What Does Single Din and Double Din Mean
First, you should know, what does DIN stand for? It stands for Deutsches Institut fur Normung which is a German regulatory body that set the standard for creating car stereos. There are two standards – Single DIN and Double DIN that are followed by the stereo manufacturers worldwide after being adopted by the International Organization for Standardization.
What is a Single DIN
A Single DIN unit is compact in size as the faceplate measures 7 inches by 2 inches. It lacks some advanced features but the sound quality is just as good. Since it is small in size and comprises basic features of a sound system, therefore, it is less expensive.
But despite having the lesser functionality, Single DIN head unit is the choice of many car owners as it easily fits into the dashboard of a variety of car models.
If you already have a Single DIN stereo, it doesn’t mean you can’t upgrade it as the Double DIN stereo would not fit into Single DIN slot. The good news is, some of the Best Single DIN Head Unit models have come with quite good features such as Bluetooth, USB and AUX inputs, and wireless remote control that would improve the appearance and usability of your car’s dashboard.
What is a Double DIN
A Double DIN head unit is called Double DIN just because it is equivalent to two Single DINs stacked on top of each other where the faceplate measures as 7 inches by 4 inches. Its bigger size leaves space for more features and functionalities which include a touch screen, DVD player, advanced connectivity, camera, phone apps, integration with a smartphone, and more.
If you have a car with the Best Double DIN car stereo system then it gives you the option to replace the existing Double DIN system with the more advanced Double DIN systems. It is best for today’s generation who always look for improvements.
Difference between Single Din & Double Din
When it comes to differentiating between the two – the Single DIN and the Double DIN, we find a variety of differences considering the main factors such as size, sound quality, features, and usability. Let’s explain them in detail.
#1 – Size
Size is the key factor that makes a Single DIN system different from the Double DIN unit. However, both have the same width of 7 inches but height is different. Single DIN is 2 inches in height while Double DIN is 4 inches, thus Double DIN head unit is twice as tall as a single DIN head unit.
The small size of Single DIN allows for a precise design which makes it the best fit for many car models. On the other hand, the bigger size of Double DIN allows for including more advanced features for ease of use and more customization.
#2 – Sound Quality
In terms of sound quality, there is hardly any difference between the single DIN and double DIN head unit. The kind of sound the stereo system will produce largely depends on the make and model of the stereo system and the components like speakers, woofers, amplifiers, and subwoofer attached to it.
#3 – Features
The Double DIN units have undeniably more features than the Single DIN unit. Thanks to the bigger size of Double DIN units that accommodates large display, features a touchscreen, and many smart features including app support, GPS, navigation, WiFi connectivity, Bluetooth, and a rearview camera.
Unlike Single DIN unit, Double DIN unit also comes with a range of connecting slots like USB, AUX, and SD cards which lets you play your favorite music from a variety of sources. Thus, in terms of features, the Double DIN head unit can’t beat the Single DIN unit.
However, some of the Single DIN head unit models have a nice assortment of features that make it more functional.
#4 – Usability
This is the major difference between stereo systems. The double-DIN unit has a bigger size hence it accommodates more smart features such as a camera option and integration with smartphones which offer a great user experience.
Unlike Single DIN, the Double DIN allows for larger and more visible control buttons which makes it easy for the driver to spot and press while driving. But remember that many of the latest Single DIN models have a range of smart features that leave no difference between these two head units except what size will fit inside the dashboard of the vehicle.
Another thing which is worth describing here is that with Single DIN head unit, you have only one choice to upgrade the unit with similar type of unit. But with Double DIN, you have option to choose between Double DIN and Single DIN.
If you choose to switch from Double DIN to Single DIN, you will probably have more space left in the dashboard that you can use for storage purpose.
Which One You Need to Choose Single Din Or Double Din
Which is better Single DIN or Double DIN entirely depends on your personal interest, budget, and the kind of DIN slot your car has. If you’re keen about enhancing the functionality of the dashboard and ready to shell out a few extra dollars, then choose Double DIN head unit. It will spruce up the entire entertainment system of your car in terms of usability, features, and advanced technologies.
But if your key preference is only about improving the quality of sound, then both systems lie at the same ground. Here, instead of buying the Double DIN unit, you can add in a separate amplifier or a good set of speakers to improve the sound quality.
The main consideration you need to make is to look for the DIN slot your car has. If your car has a Single DIN slot, then you can only switch to a similar type of DIN and there is no point to look for Double DIN unit. The option of Double DIN would only be there if you have a double DIN slot.
All these techie features are not always the preference of everyone. Some people like easy to use devices with fewer features and functionality and Single DIN unit is a more appropriate option for them.
The bottom line is, what budget you have, what kind of features you need, and what type of DIN slot your vehicle already has, will determine which the better option for you is.
How to Choose the Right Car Stereo
The head unit is the centerpiece of a car that not only improves the aesthetics of the car but also determines how good your audio system will sound. Therefore, it is important to have the perfect car stereo. But choosing the right car stereo can be a bit tricky if you don’t know exactly what to look for.
If you’re looking to upgrade your car’s audio system, here are certain vital factors that you should consider while out in the market for a new stereo system.
#1 – Audio Sources
First of all, you need to determine what type of audio sources you will use. If you prefer playing your music playlist from a variety of sources such as phone, iPod, or MP3 player, then the stereo must have a USB port, CD player, and an Aux-in.
However, nowadays, almost all stereo systems have input for all of these audio sources but still, you should look for them and choose only the one that has the most needed audio sources.
#2 – Smartphone Integration
In today’s life, smartphone is becoming must-to-have gadget that you use all the time, even while driving. If you like streaming music from your phone to the stereo and want to make hands-free call to avoid distraction from the road then choose the head unit that features Bluetooth connectivity.
With Bluetooth connectivity, you can use your phone wirelessly for both calling and streaming music.
In addition to this, if streaming apps are also one of those things you frequently access, then look for the stereo that has support for popular streaming apps like Pandora, Spotify, and iHeart Radio.
#3 – HD Radio & Satellite Radio
The feature of AM/FM radio is the most common and basic feature of a head unit but it comes with inferior sound quality. If you want better sound quality for local radio stations, then choosing the head unit with having in-built radio will give you ten times better sound.
Moreover, if you travel a lot especially to long distances, then head unit with satellite radio will ease your journey, giving you ability to access any radio station from anywhere along with plenty of music channels, entertainment programming, news, sports, and weather. Such features can incredibly improve your driving experience.
#4 – GPS Navigation
Stereo systems have not only one job to playing music; these systems can also guide you through the way to where you’re going.
However, smartphones have much superior GPS navigation but they rely on internet connectivity, so the place where internet connectivity is weaker or unavailable, the function of GPS navigation would not work. In this place, the in-built GPS system of your car stereo will be functional and would help you get on the right way.
You should look for this feature if you frequently travel to unknown places.
#5 – Display
In terms of display, you need to look for what kind of visual experience you are looking for, whether you want a full video screen or just an LED readout is enough for you. If you already have a stereo with an LED screen that only shows the title name and artist name and wants to improve on it then look for a stereo system that has a full video screen.
Another thing to consider is whether you want touchscreen or a normal screen. If you want digital touchscreen display then check how the visibility is on the screen in sunlight.
#6 – Price
The budget you set for this particular thing, will determine what range of options will be available for you. No matter what you like and what you choose, you will only have that product if it suits your budget.
When you discard the products that are out of your price range, it minimizes the list of options available for you and makes it easier for you to choose the one that best suits your needs and budget both.
We have outlined the difference between Single DIN stereo and Double DIN stereo to give you a better understanding of both types of stereo systems. We hope the provided information will help you in choosing the right car stereo that will meet your preferences and requirements.