With all the options available today, there’s no reason to stick with a dimly-lit car stereo that’s tough to navigate and even tougher to enjoy. But when it comes time to upgrade to a flip out head unit, there are so many choices it can seem impossible to pick the right one.
Here we’ll look at some of the top flip out car stereos available that will make your car audio experience better than ever before. From app compatibility to smartphone functions and motorized touchscreens, here are the best flip out head units on the market.
Editor’s Choice Flip Out Car Stereo
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Best Flip Out Head Unit Reviews
1. Pioneer AVH-3300NEX Flip Out DVD Receiver
For good audio quality with the remote features modern drivers want (hands-free calling and music access), the Pioneer AVH-3300NEX receiver fits the bill.
It won’t bring the house down in terms of stereo quality or output, but for casual listening and accessibility to phone features, it’s one of our top choices.
Pioneer is a well-known and reputable brand that consistently delivers in all areas of car audio. So it’s not surprising that their AVH-3300NEX delivers. First, the 7-inch touchscreen is both a CD and DVD receiver that’s also compatible with Apple CarPlay—so clearly , Pioneer is keeping things current.
The motorized fold-out screen heightens the experience, and the screen is a touchscreen interface that also works with Android Auto and features Bluetooth for use with any smartphone or another device. But despite all the features, the unit, when folded away, is compact and non-flashy, a perk for those who don’t want to flaunt their equipment.
Perks include tech features like being able to sync multiple smartphones, ability to connect to a backup camera (including aftermarket options), optional packages for music and navigation, voice activation via smartphone, and hands-free phone calls. The backlight colors are also customizable.
The AVH-3300NEX has a customizable touchscreen interface, and extra add-ons are available (at an additional cost). Once the screen folds in, part of the faceplate is removable to deter theft. However, the stereo can still operate without that portion of the faceplate.
Both a USB port and Bluetooth connectivity allow you to use nearly any device for music and phone calls. However, the USB port is on the back of the unit, meaning you’ll need to use the included extension cable to connect devices manually.
2. Power Acoustik PTID-8920B In-Dash Receiver
Whether you’re hoping to play music via multiple sources or want a screen for backup camera output, the Power Acoustik PTID-8920B has what you need. The remote is a bit cumbersome to operate, but for drivers who can reach the touchscreen, that’s not a big issue.
Sound quality is exceptional, but there are a few limitations as to equalizer settings and output, making this unit a feature-rich introduction to better car audio.
Along with Bluetooth and USB compatibility, the Power Acoustik PTID-8920B unit also works with SDHC cards. You can even view and save photos, watch MP4 videos, and more with compatible SDHC cards.
Connecting other video sources is simple with the RCA connectors at the rear of the unit, but if you don’t need that connectivity, you can streamline the unit by removing that part. The adjustment can be helpful for installations that would be tight otherwise.
Hands-free calling via Bluetooth is available, but depending on your smartphone, you may not be able to use solely voice commands to make a call. Some customers noted that it still took a few presses of buttons to make a phone call, meaning the process wasn’t entirely hands-free. Of course, this depends on the brand and model of your phone, as well as whether the device has voice command features.
The unit notes MP4 compatibility, and clarity is good enough to view videos and movies, though some users find the resolution a bit lacking. A removable faceplate (along with a blinking red light) helps enhance your vehicle’s security, as thieves are less likely to try and snatch a stereo without all its parts.
The Power Acoustik PTID-8920B is an in-dash receiver with a flip-out touchscreen that measures 7 inches. It’s a single-din unit, and the motorized screen automatically folds away when the vehicle shuts off. The screen is compatible with backup cameras, but there is a few-second delay before the image relays to the screen.
3. Boss Audio BV00821 Touchscreen Player Receiver
The lack of Bluetooth may be off-putting for most of us (although another model does offer it), but that also means a more accessible price point for customers who need backup camera functions and multiple modes of music play.
And while the sound quality is good, the monitor quality is better, ideal for everyone who’s tired of fuzzy video feeds from the backup camera.
Although many flip out stereo receivers focus on the screen more than the audio, Boss Audio’s BV00821 unit does both. Along with the full-color screen, which displays DVDs and images and video via USB or SD, there’s also a preset built-in EQ and bass/treble/balance/fader selections.
While some stereos rely on just a couple of audio settings, Boss concentrates more on the sound experience. Connectivity via Aux cord, USB, and SD card means that whatever media you want to see or hear, you can do it with this stereo.
Screen quality is high, though some customers noted difficulty getting MP4s to play. It likely depends on the source of your files and whether they are ripped or converted files.
Boss Audio’s BV99821 motorized screen receiver measures 7 inches and features DVD compatibility, a wireless remote, 85 watts of power, expansive equalizer settings, and multiple input modes for audio, video, and images. The unit does not have Bluetooth features, although it is possible to connect phones via either a USB cord or an AUX cord (for music only).
Although the resolution is noted as 800×600, most customers highlight the crisp image quality on-screen. The audio quality is not as high as other models, however, so customers looking for a stereo to pair with a well-equipped speaker system may not be satisfied with this head unit.
4. Pioneer AVH-X7800BT Receiver
Dual Bluetooth is probably the best-loved feature on Pioneer’s AVH-X7800BT, but its admirable audio quality also helps its rank.
The USB input is limited, despite loads of connectors on the back end, but for hands-free phone functions matched with high-quality sound, this Pioneer unit is a safe bet.
Great picture quality and plenty of flexible features make the Pioneer AVH-X7800BT Receiver an excellent flip out head unit option. It can be tricky to install, but once it’s in, this unit delivers excellent audio and video quality.
Extensive settings allow the user to customize the listening (and viewing) experience, but some cross-compatibility can make it tough to enjoy your music on the go.
For example, you can’t use both an iPod and an Android device with the dual Bluetooth. That means adjusting settings while driving, which isn’t safe, or choosing either phone capability or music while traveling.
Pioneer’s AVH-X7800BT Receiver comes with a 7-inch flip-out screen that uses resistive touchscreen technology with a NEX user interface. Resolution measures 800×480, plenty of pixels for video clarity. And, you can connect two smartphones at the same time, plus use the remote control to adjust settings.
A removable faceplate serves as a theft deterrent, and power output peaks at 50 watts. Compatibility with Spotify and Pandora allows you to take your music on the road easily with USB connectivity. Bluetooth lets you go hands-free plus stream audio from other music sources.
Although connectivity is great, some users noted that the unit is a bit bulky due to all the connectors available. Therefore, in some install scenarios, customers may find they have to wedge the unit in.
5. Jensen VX7012 Single Din Car Stereo
Jensen’s VX7012 has two things most stereos in this class don’t: GPS navigation and SiriusXM radio capabilities. For many drivers, those are the two essentials, meaning the trade-off with less than stellar touchscreen function is worth it.
Plus, the audio quality is amazing, even with stock speakers, making the Jensen unit an all-around contender.
While you can connect media to the unit with Bluetooth, USB, or microSD connections, it’s also possible to use screen mirroring from your smartphone. Screen mirroring lets you view your cell phone’s screen in a larger format, thanks to the VX7012’s high-resolution display.
Both Apple and Android devices are compatible via Bluetooth and USB connection, plus you can select from music apps like SiriusXM, Pandora, iHeartRadio, and Spotify to stream. Plus, this unit has something no other stereo on our list has: built-in navigation.
Audible prompts keep you on track toward your destination, and you can also customize the music experience with a variety of custom settings. However, note that while using Bluetooth connectivity, if you receive a phone call, that takes precedence over the navigation system and you may miss a direction or two.
Steering wheel controls are also compatible with the Jensen unit, so if your vehicle has buttons on the steering wheel to adjust the volume or station, you can set those to correspond with the stereo. This is a plus because some customers have noted that the touch screen response is a bit sluggish and therefore difficult to navigate.
The Jensen VX7012 stereo has a 7-inch LCD touch screen display, music streaming and video player capabilities, iGO PRIMO Navigation, and packs everything into a single-din installation. There’s also the option to link up with a backup camera if you decide to install one.
It can be difficult to find a flip out car stereo that fits a single din setup, but these top picks deliver all the features you want in a small package.
Whether it’s crisp videos, high-resolution images, or just some strong bass that you’re looking for, there’s something for everyone here—including that must-have GPS navigation.
With amply-sized screens, high resolution, and, of course, quality audio features and app compatibility, our top choices for flip out head units combine functionality with all the elements users want to keep them entertained while on the road. And, in most cases, there’s no cutting or rewiring necessary—just a quick and easy install.
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