In-car entertainment systems have come a long way in the past decade, with Bluetooth connectivity and wireless solutions and it can seem a bit daunting for a novice to negotiate. There are many components that make up a premier in-car entertainment system, and with that in mind, here are a few useful tips to help you make all the right choices.
- Do some online research – There’s a wealth of information on the Internet regarding in-car entertainment. You can learn about the separate components that make up a system; the media player, power amp and coaxial speakers and the more you know about the components, the less likely you are to make a wrong decision when buying. There are so many variables involved when choosing the various components, it can seem like a challenge to choose a set of components to create the sound system.
- Comparing prices – The best prices for in-car entertainment systems are from the online supplier and by entering the product name and number into a search engine window, you can get many websites that sell the items in question and easily compare prices. The online supplier can always beat the traditional retailer in terms of price because they do not have the huge expenses of a retail outlet. Once you know the full model number, simply paste that into the Google search window and you will receive a list of online suppliers along with prices.
- Go for a known brand – Like most things, you only get what you pay for when you buy car stereo components, so choosing a brand like Kenwood, Pioneer or JVC makes good sense. There are media players such as Apple CarPlay that can integrate fully with other Apple devices and if you are an Apple fan, this would be the ideal player to buy.
- Decide on a budget – If you look at hi-end in-car entertainment systems, prices can go right off the scale, so you are advised to decide how much money you are prepared to invest in your in-car entertainment system. This makes it much easier, as you have a guideline to work with and you are much less likely to spend more than you wanted. While on the topic of cars, here is some advice for driving in bad weather, which is well worth a read.
- Check online product reviews – This is the best way to discover the fine details of any car stereo component and a quick Google search is all it takes to find the best product reviews and reading them will help you to make the right decisions. Another thing you can do is to join an online forum about in-car stereo systems, where you can ask the experts for advice on which components to choose.
- Video or not? – Some drivers prefer not to have a DVD system in the car, as it can distract the driver and this is something that you have to decide. You can have digital screens fitted on the rear of the front seats, which gives rear passengers viewing. If you don’t want video, there are media players that offer many music platforms but no video and these are obviously a little cheaper.
- Avoid ordering from an in-car entertainment system installer – Of course, you could just drive your car to a car stereo shop and have them install the components you choose, but you would pay through the nose for that. The shop will tell you they offer free installation, but when you compare their prices with the online supplier, you will find they are at least 15-20% higher than the online supplier. The smart way to go about it is to order all the components from an online supplier, then approach the installation shop and ask for a quote to install the system.
It might seem a little daunting to negotiate the purchase of an in-car entertainment system and by taking the above advice, you should be able to make all the right choices. If you are at all worried about ordering in-car entertainment components from the online supplier, here is some information about your rights as a consumer. In fact, you have the same rights as if you made the purchase in a retail store and buying from a reputable supplier should ensure that everything works out fine.