Crutchfield Writing Team
Answers to some of the more common questions about car stereos.
Bluetooth® is fast becoming a popular feature on car receivers. We take a look at eight different in-dash receivers equipped with Bluetooth connectivity and run them through a series of tests at the Crutchfield Labs.
Bluetooth lets you talk hands-free in the car, but it can do a lot more. Many in-dash stereos also let you stream audio from your phone over your vehicle's speakers. Depending on your phone's features, you may be able to listen to driving directions, Internet radio, stored music, and more.
Bluetooth® hands-free calling can be a great benefit in the car, especially when it's integrated into your car stereo. Watch this video for a quick look at what it takes to add hands-free talking and wireless music streaming to your car stereo.
Besides hands-free calling, Bluetooth can also open up more functionality, like wireless streaming of music from smartphones and other Bluetooth devices. Crutchfield walks you through what you need to know to about using Bluetooth in the car.
Bluetooth® wireless technology can be a great benefit in the car, where we tend to juggle gadgets plugged into the stereo. Find out what it takes to add hands-free talking and wireless music streaming to your car stereo.
Kenwood's loaded the KDC-BT755HD CD receiver with a lot of great features. This car stereo has built-in Bluetooth®, an HD Radio™ tuner, and it's compatible with some popular music apps when connected to your iPhonereg; or Android™. All these features are contained in a slick package that features variable color button illumination and a bright white display.
Kenwood's DDX770 DVD receiver is a multimedia car stereo that's loaded with cool features. You'll find Bluetooth®, plus iPod® controls, while Kenwood's app control lets you access select navigation, video, and music apps when your iPhone® is connected. If you're a Pandora® Internet radio fan, you'll enjoy control of it from the receiver with the iPhone®, Android™, and Blackberry devices.
Kenwood's KDC-BT555U CD receiver gives you more choices in streaming music. Once you plug your iPhone® into the front USB input or connect your Android™ or Blackberry via Bluetooth®, you'll enjoy easy access to the musical resources of Pandora® Internet radio and iHeart Radio. You'll also be able to tap into Aha Radio, with its personalized on-demand stations that run the gamut from news to talk to music. Check out this car stereo in this display and controls demo video.
Kenwood's Excelon KDC-X597 CD receiver has built-in Bluetooth® for hands-free calling and audio streaming. And this sharp-looking car stereo sports variable color illumination for the buttons and controls, so you can match it up to your car. It'll control your iPod® or iPhone® and you can plug your Android™ via the USB when you use Kenwood's Music Control app. Take a closer look in this Crutchfield demo video.
Screen size matters — with a larger touchscreen, controls are easier to use and video content has more impact. Pioneer's AVH-X4500BT DVD receiver sports an expansive 7" screen with some pretty cool features. You can browse video files through thumbnail images - just touch them to check out a sneak preview. This car stereo also sports built-in Bluetooth® for hands-free calling. Take a look at in this demo video.
Pioneer designed the DEH-X9500BHS CD receiver with all the convenient features you want in a modern car stereo: Bluetooth® for hands-free calling and audio streaming, an HD Radio™ tuner for improved AM/FM, Pandora® Internet radio control, and dual USB inputs. You'll also find sophisticated sound controls and a variable-color display, along with the crowd-pleasing MIXTRAX feature, in this impressive car stereo. Take a look at it in action in this demo video.
Alpine's CDE-147BT CD receiver is Bluetooth® equipped, so you can make and take calls hands-free when you're in the car. And you can stream audio from your Bluetooth devices too. Alpine's Quad illumination lets you choose from four different colors for the receiver's control buttons for a style that'll work in your car. Pandora control for your iPhone® or Android™ is built in. Take a look at the CDE-147BT in this demo video.
The Kenwood Excelon KDC-X797 CD receiver offers some of the latest smartphone integration features for your car, plus the security of a remarkable 2-year warranty. You'll be knocked out by the improved reception provided by the built-in HD Radio tuner, with FM that sounds more like a CD, plus sharp and clear AM. Built-in Bluetooth frees up your hands and keeps your attention on the road when you take a call. And it makes a pretty strong impression with its looks too — you can adjust the co
Sony's smart-looking MEX-GS600BT CD receiver offers built-in Bluetooth®, variable color display, and plenty of cool audio controls. And its App Remote feature turns smartphone interactivity into a two-way street. With your phone's touchscreen, you can do things like selecting sources, picking radio stations, and launching apps. On the other side of the App Remote's two-way street, you can select apps using the stereo's source button, the same way you'd choose the CD player or radio as your s
The AVH-P8400BH sits at the top of Pioneer's DVD receiver lineup, offering a 6.95" touchscreen display, customizable display colors, built-in Bluetooth®, and an HD Radio™ tuner, along with some cool new features that'll really enhance your car audio and video experience. Check it out in this display and controls demo video.
With so many smartphone-controlling receivers out there, it can be tricky to sort them out. To help you understand how some of the latest options work, we spent some time with them in the Crutchfield Labs.
Alpine's CDE-HD149BT CD receiver packs a serious sonic punch and includes features like an HD Radio® tuner, built-in Bluetooth®, and Pandora® Internet radio control, too. Alpine's user-friendly controls round out the package, with the innovative new TuneIt™ smartphone-based app for tuning your system. Take a look at it in action in this demo video.
You'll enjoy great sound and remarkable versatility with Kenwood's KDC-BT855U CD receiver. It not only plays music from your CDs, iPod®, and more, but it also comes with built-in Bluetooth® for hands-free calling and audio streaming. This Kenwood's crystal-clear display gives you all the info you want, and you can switch the 3-line display to a 2-line format with a larger font that makes it easier to read phone numbers, song titles, and source data.