If you’ve ever considered putting a DVD player in your car, you’ve probably had to do a lot of weighing the good and bad. While that’s definitely the case with any big purchase, oddly enough, we don’t mean the difference between different models or companies here; rather, we mean whether or not it’s even worth it to pick one out in the first place.
Even though you can really do incredible things with your 2 DIN stereo head when you look into an aftermarket setup, sometimes you really are just looking for a double DIN touch screen head unit to do one thing and one thing well; play DVDs or other video with the highest quality, the least difficulty, and at the best price for a double DIN touch screen car stereo.
If that sounds like you, don’t worry; even with the huge market for an even bigger lineup of features, you still do have a few companies offering high-quality simpler pieces. Perfect for people who don’t feel comfortable doing anything complex installing a new car stereo, or on the other end of the spectrum, people who really want the best possible video capabilities they can get, these pieces are great no-nonsense models.
They play video in a nice range of formats, they’re affordable even on a budget (so you don’t feel odd putting them into an older model used car), and they come from companies who are well established enough that, should anything go wrong, it’s a safe bet you can find somebody who can help you troubleshoot on these double DIN touch screen models.
#1 – Recommended: Kenwood DDX25BT In-Dash Touchscreen DVD
Just having the Kenwood name puts this affordable model head-and-shoulders above a similarly priced priced touch screen head unit; of course, the DDX271 isn’t exactly resting on its name alone. With this model, you’re getting a lot of options for an incredibly intuitive setup, thanks in large part to the touch-screen interface and simple user-friendly design; if you can point and click on your computer, then figuring out what to do on the DDX271 should just come naturally. And if you’re worried that everything’s going to get scrunched up on a small monitor, you don’t need to be. The WVGA output on the 6.1 inch screen not only gives you enough room to navigate, but allows you to watch your media with solid clarity.
Notice how we said “media”? In addition to the DVD player on the front of this model, it’s also got a USB slot as well, perfect for anybody who’s already digitized their DVD collection. Just plug up any USB device and this stereo head will pull off your basic video files, in addition to double DIN touch screen audio, so fans of both digital and hard-copy media can each find something to love about this model, and neither one needs to learn anything too complex to get the most out of it either.
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Should you want to make things a little more complex, the DDX271 can also integrate with the Maestro RR from IdataLink. With this little aftermarket bundle, you can add a whole host of extra features for both your A/V needs, as well as a setup that gives you an in-depth look at almost every part of your car. It’s because of this little add-on that the DDX271 is a great model for anybody who’s on the fence about an aftermarket double DIN; it’s solid as a stand-alone, but can be upgraded with some real processing power to give you all the features you want.
Whatever your level of technical prowess or technical patience, both of these double DIN stereo heads will make it perfectly easy to play DVDs right through your car’s stereo system at a price that’s encouraging for anybody who has even considered giving this wonderful technology a shot. This model is also one of our top Kenwood picks overall.
#2 – Pioneer AVH-2300NEX Touchscreen Unit
Another great company name, Pioneer’s affordable DVD double DIN rings all the same bells you’d expect, but does so in such a way that really does set them apart from budget models. First off, in addition to the double DIN touch screen radio setup, the interface is a neat little hybrid of a touch-screen and some face-mounted buttons for things like volume and basic track changing/chapter changing.
This way, even in the middle of a movie, you don’t necessarily have to put your fingers in the way to adjust your basic stuff, but when you want more in-depth control, it’s easy to just go full touch-screen. As for your actual DVD playing, you’re getting an incredibly intricate player in a deceptively simple package.
In addition to playing your regular DVDs out of the box and through the mounted USB, the x1600DVD can cover an impressive range of file formats, perfectly designed for anybody who has collections on DVD-RWs or even DivX formatted files; don’t worry if you don’t know what those mean, your x1600DVD double DIN unit does. Especially if you’re pulling all of your media from a lot of different sources, this Pioneer double DIN can play them all in a pretty robust quality.
Learn more about the 1600 unit in our full review of the Pioneer beast.