Would you like to listen to the music up to your own taste and make hands-free calls without having to wear the uncomfortable earphone?
Wouldn’t it be great if you could access your phone during the car ride, without having to pick it up?
Well, it seems like you need a Bluetooth car stereo.
Now, there are so many good quality Bluetooth car stereos in the market and choosing the right one for you can take a lot of time and patience. That’s why we made the list of the best Bluetooth car stereos in 2017 that will hopefully help you find the one that will meet your needs.
Last updated 2/18/2018.
|Model (link jumps to our review)||Image||Power rating||Equalizer||Rating||Price*||Order Online|
|1. PYLE PLDNANDVR695||No products found.||80 x 4 watts||Digital graphic, 13 bands||No products found.|
(No products found. reviews)
|No products found.||No products found.|
|2. Sony MEX GS 810BH||55 x 4 watts||Digital graphic, 10 bands|
(64 Reviews reviews)
|Price not available||Buy on Amazon|
|3. Pioneer AVIC – 8200 NEX||50 x 4 watts||Digital graphic, 13 bands|
(173 Reviews reviews)
|$599.99||Buy on Amazon|
|4. Kenwood EXCELON KDCX 998||No products found.||50 x 4 watts||Parametric, 13 bands||No products found.|
(No products found. reviews)
|No products found.||No products found.|
|5. Pioneer AVH 4200 NEX||50 x 4 watts||Digital graphic, 13 bands|
(260 Reviews reviews)
|$1,199.00||Buy on Amazon|
|6. Parrot Asteroid SMART Digital Media Receiver||55 x 4 watts||Digital graphic, 7 bands|
(99 Reviews reviews)
|Price not available||Buy on Amazon|
|7. Pioneer DEH - X8800 BHS||50 x 4 watts||Digital graphic, 13 bands|
(87 Reviews reviews)
|$175.00||Buy on Amazon|
|8. Pioneer AVH X 5800 BHS||50 x 4 watts||Digital graphic, 13 bands|
(327 Reviews reviews)
|$269.95||Buy on Amazon|
|9. Alpine CDE 164 BT||50 x 4 watts||Parametric, 9 bands|
(115 Reviews reviews)
|$49.95||Buy on Amazon|
|10. Pioneer MVH X 380 BT||50 x 4 watts||Digital graphic, 5 bands|
(298 Reviews reviews)
|$99.99||Buy on Amazon|
Connecting with bluetooth car stereo is very simple and quick process. You just need to start pairing mode on car stereo and turn on bluetooth on your mobile phone.
We’ve compiled a hand-picked list of top 10 bluetooth car stereo of 2018. The list is based on our author’s objective review and combination of various opinions from users all over the world. Continue reading to see all of our bluetooth car stereo reviews:
No products found.
Ranked #1 by the editor
Amazon rating: No products found.
(based on No products found. reviews)
This double DIN stereo comes with so many great features. It is an Android device so its start-up looks a lot like a start-up of any Android phone. It is a little hard to select with the fingers but it comes with a little stylus which makes it really easy to use.
There are also included Rearview Backup Camera that is a great helper for getting into tight parking spots and Dashboard Camera that records the road ahead of you, and let’s not forget about the remote controller.
First of all, since this review is about the best Bluetooth car stereos, I need to mention the Bluetooth feature. Once you connect your phone to the stereo, via Bluetooth, you will be able to make hands-free calls. You will also be able to download your whole phonebook to the receiver for easier access during the ride. The performance can be described with just one word as perfect.
Another important feature is GPS. The Pyle PLDNANDVR695 has its own navigation App that works just fine, but if you are not totally happy with it, you can always use the one from your phone or Google maps if you connect to the internet, of course.
Connected to the Wi-Fi, you can use the internet browser on the receiver just as on your home computer and thanks to the large screen you will feel like you are using a tablet.
The receiver also has the CD and DVD player which is awesome but watching movies while driving a car can be a bit dangerous, you’ll agree. However, Pyle thought about your safety so it made it possible to watch a movie only while having the parking brake on.
Another amazing thing about this receiver is that it allows you to download all of your favorite apps from the Google Play Store, just as you would do on any Android phone. All you’ll need is the internet connection for the download and installation. The receiver comes with the 16GB of memory which provides a lot of storage for your Apps.
This Culligan model also comes in polished chrome finish.
One of the reasons Sony MEX GS 810BH is one of my favorite single DIN stereos is the amount of control you have over the audio. You can customize bass, mids and treble frequencies to your own taste. There are also 10 customizable EQ presets at various frequency bands and high-pass and low-pass filters from 50Hz to 120Hz which allows you to isolate the bass. It has a built-in HD Radio receiver which broadcasts a digital signal and contains the artist, album, and songs metadata. It also allows you to tag a song when you hear it and download it on iTunes later.
This receiver allows you to play almost any media format available. You can play CDs, you can listen to the music from your flash or iPod if you plug it into the USB port and you can play MP3, WMA, WAV and AAC files. Thanks to the Bluetooth, you can also play the music from your phone or tablet wirelessly.
Once you pair your phone to the receiver, via Bluetooth, you won’t have to reach for it anymore to change the song or pause it or even to make a call or read a text message. The receiver will do everything for you.
The receiver comes with the external microphone so you can use the voice command to dial a number or answer the call and it is a great thing is that when someone calls you the caller ID appears on the display so you literally won’t have to pick up your phone even once during the ride. What’s amazing is that the microphone has the noise cancellation feature which filters all the road noises and echoes. You can also have it read the text messages to you and you can dictate what you want to send.
Another amazing double DIN receiver, Pioneer AVIC – 2800 NEX, comes with a variety of great features. It has a 7-inch capacitive WVGA touchscreen display that is more sensitive than traditional touch panels, which actually means it is more responsive. It allows you to control the screen with the simple finger movements just as you do on your smartphone or tablet. The display also has the home button that looks almost the same as one that can be found on the iPhone.
The receiver also has the Siri integration, also similar to an iPhones voice control, for hands-free calls and texting. That means that the receiver will actually read or send text messages for you and answer calls so you won’t have to pick up your phone even once during the ride.
Then there are two great features called Apple CarPlay and Android Auto that basically do the same things but for different types of phones. If you are an iPhone user, you will use Apple CarPlay and if you are an Android user you will use Android Auto for hands-free, or eyes free, voice command. Both of these apps can be paired with phones via Bluetooth and when they are, all you need to do is interact with Siri, like you normally would through your phone.
Another way to connect is with HDMI input for mirroring which will allow you see all types of content from apps on your display. This will allow you to play, pause and select tracks, but also display metadata information on the screen. However, this is possible only for Android devices.
The Pioneer AVIC – 8200 NEX also features a built-in navigation that has over 7.9 billion points of interest and if that isn’t enough there is also a 3D mapping that gives you realistic views of selected areas.
There are many inputs and slots on this receiver that allow plug and play kind of entertainment during the ride. That actually means that it allows you to plug in your flash or play a CD with your own music. There are some additional features, too, like Sirius ready, Pioneer MIXTRAX technology, Pandora Internet radio-ready and built-in HD Radio with an amazing digital sound quality. The sound can also be customized, thanks to the preset equalizer patterns.
No products found.
Ranked #4 by the editor
Amazon rating: No products found.
(based on No products found. reviews)
This is one excellent single DIN stereo that gives you more control over the shape of your sound than any other stereo in this review.
When it comes to audio performance, the only downside to this receiver is the 200 watts maximum output which is kind of funny because that is the most stereos maximum output rating, so it isn’t a big deal, especially since the continuous output goes up to 88 RMS watts, which is the best among all the other stereos in this review.
This Exelon has many great features, but my favorite is definitely the 13 customizable equalizer frequency bands which give you the control over your stereo sound and allows you to customize it up to your own taste.
When it comes to playback, the receiver is compatible with any available format. The CD player is always the best option, of course, because it provides the best audio quality, but you can still play the music from your flash through the USB port or from your phone if you connect it via Bluetooth.
Talking about the Bluetooth, you already know that it allows you to stream all the audio from your phone with the A2DP profile, but there is also something called AVRCP which actually allows you to interact with all these apps from the receiver’s faceplate without having to pick up the phone.
There is also the voice command, of course, which allows you to make hands-free calls but also to talk to programs with voice recognition like Siri and Google Now, so that you can keep your eyes on the road the whole time while still being connected to your phone. What’s really important for me is the noise-cancelling feature that filters all the road sounds and echoes, and thankfully, Kenwood EXCELON KDCX 998 has one.
Now, let’s take a look at the faceplate. I love it that it is detachable and I’m sure you know why. There are three lines of text which is great because it makes it so easy to read all the artist information. What also amazes me is that all the ports (CD port, USB port, and AUX port) have dust covers which actually protects the whole stereo and extends its life. Lastly, if the style is one of the most important things for you, you can customize the colors to match your interior.
This amazing double DIN receiver is the proof that you don’t have to break a bank to get some fancy tech for your car.
Let’s talk about the design first. It is really minimal and clean which I personally love, with also minimal in design but spacious 6.95-inch touchscreen on top. It is really easy to use; in fact, there is absolutely no difference between using the screen on the smartphone or tablet. It doesn’t even require any extra pressure as some other touchscreen receivers. Along with the touchscreen, there are also some physical touch buttons on the little silver chin below the screen. Those buttons should make it easier to adjust the volume, change the tracks or stations, pause and mute. As it really makes all the quick audio adjustments easier, it also minimizes all the distractions while driving. All the buttons, except for the home button, have some kind of membrane protection that are covered with which doesn’t make it harder to press the button, but it does make it harder to identify which one is it, so until you get used to the whole receiver you’ll have to take a quick look to find the one you’d want to press.
The screen, unfortunately, can’t be tilted in order to customize the position to your own needs. You can only tilt it upwards which will give you access to DVD-ROM port, SD card slot, and a 3.5mm audio input jack as well as a small push button that allows you to remove the touchscreen faceplate. To remove the screen you’ll have to push the button while lifting the faceplate, but you have to do it within a few seconds unless you want the receiver to automatically place the screen back to its previous position.
The process of installation takes about 20 minutes if you know what you’re doing. However, if you’ve never installed an audio receiver to your car, I recommend calling a specialized service; otherwise, it will take you a while.
When it comes to smartphone features it has both Android Auto and CarPlay for both types of phones, which is great, but I have to mention that both of these have separate USB ports, so if you plug your iPhone into Android Auto port it just won’t work. However, this can be a great thing if you have both types of phones because it will allow you to switch between the phones during the ride without having to unplug anything.
This is an audio receiver so I have to mention the audio features, right? The listening experience you’ll get depends on a lot of the speakers you have installed in your car. However, I haven’t heard anyone complaining yet, and my experience was great too. Since it has a built-in HD Radio you can pick any station and the audio will be crystal clear. Streaming, CD, DVD and Bluetooth all sound amazing too. And the great thing is that you can customize the stereo sound to your own taste choosing from 6 presets or adjusting the EQ.
Parrot Asteroid SMART looks just as any other double DIN receiver with the 6.2-inch capacitive touchscreen on top. But let’s see why this one stands out.
Let’s start with the display. The colors are crisp and clear and there is absolutely no problem reading the screen even in direct sunlight. The touch sensitivity is no different than on your smartphone or tablet and the responsiveness is quite good. On the left side of the screen, you’ll find four virtual buttons for Back, Menu, Task Switching and the Home Button that brings up the home screen no matter where you tapped it from. There are also some physical control buttons on the unit’s face, such as a small power button and an eject button, placed on the glossy black bezel. Unfortunately, the screen isn’t detachable, but that thin silver bezel is which I guess the designer thought would be enough to repel the potential thief. I wouldn’t agree, though.
There is also nothing spectacular hiding behind that bezel, just one Asteroid’s full-size SD card slot. That’s right, there is no CD and DVD player on this receiver. However, you can always save whatever you want to play on that SD card or USB storage device.
When it comes to Bluetooth connectivity, it is pretty much standard and, as always, useful. What’s great about this unit is that it’s capable of connecting to two devices at the same time which means that you can be connected whether you are a passenger or a driver.
Now, let’s see how smart the SMART actually is when it comes to voice control. The voice commands can be used mainly for two things and those are calling a contact or music search and both work the same way. Whether you want to call someone or play a particular song you’ll have to select the voice control app, then choose between music and contacts and finally say the name of the contact you’d like to call or the song you want to play, but not before you hear the beep. Even though there is the least actual voice control in the whole process, I can’t really complain because it works very well. It can only let you down if your phonebook hasn’t completely sync previously which would be the second design flaw.
When it comes to apps you can download some from Google Play, you just have to be connected to the internet while downloading and installing. However, the availability of apps depends on the country you are in, so if you can’t download something, you shouldn’t blame it on the receiver capability. That’s why I decided to keep this section short.
Here we have one single DIN audio receiver that is capable of so much on the paper, but we decided to put it to the test and as you can see it made to our top ten list. So, let me tell you what makes it so amazing.
Let’s start with the audio performance that is just great. The maximum power output of 200 watts is pretty standard, but what’s outstanding is the continuous power output of 88 RMS watts that ranks among the highest receivers in this review. The audio quality is just great with crisp and clear sounds through the wide range of musical styles. There is just one small flaw that I found and that is that you have the minimal amount of control over the sound with only 7 equalizer bands.
Anyway, the receiver offers comprehensive playback options such as playing all the digital formats including the CDs, WAV and AAC. If you connect music players through the USB port it will be able to play that too, or stream audio from your phone if you connect it via Bluetooth. As I did my research I found that the favorite thing among people is the internet radio app called Pandora, that allows you to customize your radio stations, and yes, it can stream that too.
So yes, X 8800 can play anything and everything, but that isn’t the greatest thing yet. There is one unique feature in all the DEH car stereos and it is called Mixtrax mode. What Mixtrax mode actually does is that it basically makes some DJ-inspired effects and transitions in between the songs so that there’s never a break in music and the lights on the faceplate also pulse along with the music. I find this feature so much fun, but that’s all that it really is.
Let’s take a look at the Bluetooth feature, now. There are two Bluetooth profiles: A2DP and AVRCP. This actually allows you to stream audio from your phone without having to pick it up whenever you want to change the song or pause it, but you can control your playlist from the desktop. As mentioned earlier, X 8800 also supports Pandora and allows you to like or reject songs with the faceplate controls.
The voice control feature allows you to use Siri and Google Now in order to access your phone with voice commands. What this does for you is that it can read or send text messages for you, make or answer calls, check the calendar etc. This means that you can stay totally connected to your phone without having to reach for it while driving. The microphone has one of my favorite features which is called noise-canceling that actually picks up your voice and filters all the other noises from the road which makes it easier for you to make a phone call.
At the first sight, Pioneer AVH X 5800 BHS looks like any other double DIN audio receiver with the touchscreen on the top, but let’s take a closer look.
The previously mentioned 6.95 inches motorized touchscreen has multi-angle adjustments. It is clear and resistive and provides a lot brighter and more vibrant colors than most of other receivers. The increased touch sensitivity makes it more responsive than ever which also makes it really easy to use.
The design is really clean but not as minimal as I like. There are a few buttons below the screen that control the volume, allow you change the stations or songs, play and pause. What I really like is that you can choose among five colors (blue, green, red, violet or amber) so you can fit the style of the receiver with the style of your car.
When it comes to the Bluetooth feature I can describe it with only one word as flawless. It pairs quickly and it is capable of so many things from hands-free calling, wireless audio streaming with all the artists and songs information to the voice recognition. It has the new Wideband Speech Handsfree Profile 1.6 that actually doubles the flow of frequencies which makes the quality of calls better than ever.
This receiver allows Dual Device Connection which actually means that you can pair two smartphone devices at the same time via Bluetooth and even pick up calls from any of the paired devices without having to pair and unpair anything. This is great for everyone whether you are the passenger or the driver.
The Bluetooth feature also provides the ability to use the voice commands but it is only compatible with iOS devices that have voice recognition capability. This means that you’ll be able to use Siri just as you would on your phone with a single touch of the button. If you are an iPhone user, you already know what Siri is capable of and it will be just as helpful when used on the receiver in your car.
Let’s move on to the audio features. The AVH X 5800 contains the built-in HD Radio, which as we already know, allows you to listen to the radio with the same sound quality as your digital music. The receiver has an improved sound and video quality of DVD playback.
It also supports Pandora, so yes, you will be able to able to give tracks “thumbs up” or “thumbs down and tag them for the later purchase, but what’s really important here is that Pioneer made it easier to create new and store your personalised Pandora stations with just one press and hold of a button on the receiver, whether you are an iPhone or Android user.
Another thing that made me fall in love with this receiver is the earlier mentioned MixTrax mode with all the DJ-inspired effects and quick automatic remixing of tracks. It also features those light pulse effects that follow the beat of the music.
This receiver is also capable of connecting with the SiriusXM-Ready which is a Connect Vehicle Tuner that allows you to listen to commercial-free music, news, traffic, weather, and so much more. This tuner is really easy to install and use but it is sold separately.
This is one of the best single DIN units that are available in Alpine. The design is not really up to my taste, but the faceplate has everything you could ask for plus the Muli-Color Illuminated screen. The colors of the screen and the buttons can be changed by choosing colorpresets so that they go with the interior of your car. You can also have the buttons and display in different colors. And like that isn’t already enough, you can go even further and use the RGB selector to pick a specific color that meets your needs.
The receiver comes with built-in Bluetooth that allows pairing with your smartphone for wireless music streaming and hands-free calling. The calls can be answered automatically if you turn that option on, on the unit. There is also the hold option that puts the caller on the waiting mode which is handy if you receive the second call.
The unit can be customized by your smartphone device with the simple download of the Alpine TuneIt App to your phone where you can create or adjust sound settings to your own taste. The receiver features an amazing CD player, a USB port, standard radio and Bluetooth connectivity that allow you to stream internet radio apps like Pandora and it is also compatible with the SiriusXM. Unlike its predecessor, Alpine CDE 164 BT is compatible with any available media format.
The last one on our top ten list is another single DIN unit, the Pioneer MVH-X380BT. This is definitely the best car stereo on the market with the price under the $100.
The receiver has AM/FM tuner and it is capable of playing MP3, WMA, AAC, and WAV music files but it does not play CDs. The lack of the CD port shouldn’t be that much of a problem, though, because you can always plug the flash with the files you want to play into the USB port or connect your phone to the receiver via Bluetooth.
The unit has the Advanced Sound Retriever that restores sound to compressed files which improves the overall sound. The only downside to the audio performance is that the equalizer has only 5 bands which doesn’t give you that much of the control over the sound.
When it comes to smartphone integration, the unit has a built-in iPod, iPhone, and iPad control for iOS devices and the AOA 2.0 profile for Android devices which makes it possible to pair the unit with any smartphone via Bluetooth.
The MVH-X380BT comes with a lot of fun and useful features like App Mode that allow you to listen and view the content from your phone directly on the unit’s display. There is also a unique Pioneer’s feature called Mixtrax that create a constant mix of your music library with the addition of DJ-inspired effects and transitions that cover the silence in between the songs while all the music beats are followed by the light pulse on the faceplate.
When you are looking for your first Bluetooth car stereo there are a couple of things you should consider before making the purchase. There are so many car stereos out there with different attractive features, appealing design and fine specifications that put you in the position where you can’t opt just one.
I will try to make that easier for you in this section, by showing you what are the most important things you should look for when buying a car stereo.
1. Audio Performance:
A car stereo is mainly an audio device. Everything you do with it requires the sound, whether you are listening to the music, making a hands-free call or having it read the text message to you. The purpose of the receiver is to transmit the audio from no matter which source to your car’s speakers through its internal amplifier with peak power and RMS. The peak power is measured in watts and if you want the sound quality in your car to be great you shouldn’t get the unit with less than 200watts peak power. When it comes to RMS, I wouldn’t recommend below 50 x 4 watts.
Another important thing for audio performance are the audio sources. When it comes to this you should determent what are the audio sources that you most often use in your car. If it is a CD, you will definitely want the unit with the CD port. Or would you rather plug the flash with all of your music into the USB port? If that’s the case, look for the unit that is compatible with all of the audio files. Even if you mostly listen to the radio while driving, USB port is never a waste.
If you like to customize the sound in your car, look for the unit that has an equalizer with as many bands as possible because that gives you a lot of adjustment options.
2. Smart Integration:
The best way to connect your phone to the receiver is via Bluetooth that uses A2DP profile. That is just enough for wireless streaming media playback and simple hands-free calling. However, if you want to stream some apps like internet radio Pandora, make sure that the unit you pick has the feature controls for that or any other app you would want to use. Lastly, if you are one of those users who want their phones fully integrated with the receiver, you should look for the unit that is compatible with app mirroring devices like MirrorLink.
3. GPS and Navigation:
There are those car receivers that can do more than just play your music. I think it’s great to have one device for everything in your car, rather than dissipating the concentration, that should be on the driving, anyway, on multiple devices.
Almost any double DIN receiver that can be paired with the smartphone can be used as a navigator with smartphone navigation apps that you can easily download. In my experience, those have always had much more up-to-date and accurate maps than already included navigation apps from the receivers.
This is maybe the most important thing, especially if you are buying your first car stereo.
There are single DIN units and double DIN units and the difference in their dimensions is huge, so make sure which one your car supports before even thinking about buying a stereo.
If your car supports a single DIN head unit you can fit a single DIN head unit in it. However, if your vehicle supports a double DIN head unit you can choose whether you’re going to buy single and replace it later with a double DIN unit, or you are going for the bigger one right away.
When choosing a right stereo for your car you have to check if your car supports a single DIN or a double DIN head unit. How to figure that out? It is pretty easy actually. If your car came with a single DIN head unit, you’ll see that the size of the front face plate is about 7 x 2 inches, however, if it came with a double DIN head unit it will be the same width but twice taller, which will measure 7 x 4 inches.
Now, the important thing to know is that if your car supports a single DIN head unit you can only replace it with another single DIN head unit. On the other hand, if your vehicle supports a double DIN head unit you can choose whether you’re going to replace it with single or double DIN unit.
The most common question on this topic is definitely: Is double DIN better than single DIN?
And guess what, most of the people think they are. However, double DIN head units aren’t necessarily better than single DIN. It actually depends on the concrete unit you have bought.
There are some benefits of double DIN units, though, like bigger touchscreen per instance, but there are also some single DIN units with flip out touchscreens. It all comes down to the personal preference, really, and how much you can stretch your budget.
I hope this review helped you narrow down to what you think it is the best choice. Even if you don’t want any of the stereos from the list and want to continue the search, you know what are the important things are, which will make it much easier for you to find what you’re looking for.
If you’ve come to the decision, though, we are glad we could help.
You are just one purchase away from more convenient, more fun and much safer car rides!
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