The Top 5 In-Car Multimedia Systems

This guest post was contributed by James Timpson.

In the past, car multimedia systems were a luxury reserved for the wealthy. Around a decade ago GPS systems became widely available and advances in technology paved the way for new innovations; these new innovations brought us the smart phone. Many smart phones already had built-in GPS capabilities, so the satellite navigation manufacturers were forced to develop new entertainment systems in order to compete in the market.

While the business is constantly improving and expanding, these 5 multimedia systems are currently (as of 2014) at the top of the league.

1. Kenwood DNX521DAB

Built mainly for Volkswagen vehicles, the Kenwood DNX521DAB is one of the most complete multimedia systems around. It boasts a seven inch, high-definition screen and has touch capabilities. This device is most beneficial to those who enjoy radio as it has excellent national and digital signal. The sound quality is also very high partly due to a wide selection of EQ options.

2. Sony XAV601BT

The Sony XAV601BT has plenty of features and is cheaper than other systems of the same calibre. The device is built for smart phones and has MirrorLink, which allows drivers to access smart phone information via the touchscreen. In addition it has USB compatibility for audio and video streaming; and Bluetooth for hands free calling.

3. Philips CID3618

The Philips CID3618 is the one device on the market that could truly compete with a home cinema. It has excellent high-definition picture quality and can play a huge selection of audio and video files. The sound system is loud, clear, and even has 5.1 dynamic bass boost. Bluetooth can be used for both calling and streaming and it also has a USB connection for other external hardware.

4. Sony XAV-64BT

The only thing that keeps the Sony XAV-64BT below the 601BT is the price. While the 64BT provides a larger range of options and higher quality tools, it’s far more expensive. Features include an in-car DVD/CD player; a 5.1 surround sound system; and wireless control. The device is compatible with virtually any smart phone and, like its predecessor, has MirrorLink to provide complete integration.


The JVC KW-AV61BT is perhaps the most cost efficient of all the models. While it doesn’t contain any revolutionary features, the price gives it a significant edge over the competition. For people looking for a general all round system, this device is perfect; but for those who favour crisp sound and picture quality, there’s much better – especially since it only has a 6.1 inch screen.

In this day and age a car without a multimedia system is simply incomplete. Not only do they provide excellent resources for drivers, but passengers remain entertained at all times. This makes the whole driving process pleasurable for everybody.

If you are looking for the perfect balance of functionality and entertainment, these 5 in-car multimedia systems are definitely worth checking out.

Image Credit: Sony