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The Best Apple CarPlay Stereo (2022 Updated) – Reviews & Buyer’s Guide

Looking for a great way to integrate your iPhone into your car? Check out these top 5 best Apple CarPlay stereos on the market today!

best apple carplay stereo

Do you love Apple CarPlay stereo?

If so, you’re not alone. Many drivers find the convenience and functionality of CarPlay to be unbeatable. But what if you could make your CarPlay experience even better?

Believe it or not, there are some great aftermarket stereo options available that give you even more control over your music and navigation.

Our team did a comprehensive research to find out the Apple CarPlay Head Units that are actually the best to buy in 2022.

We have ranked these CarPlay Stereos in terms of their:

  • Functionalities
  • Power
  • Design
  • Responsive Touchscreen
  • Easy Installation
  • Fast Boot-time
  • Better Hands-Free Calling
  • Affordable Price

We Pick both types such as Double Din as well as Single Din touchscreen. So, it advised to pick the right unit for your vehicle as well as your needs.

So, without further ado, let’s find out the top 5 of the best Apple CarPlay Stereos available today!

Top 5 Best Apple CarPlay Stereo for 2022 [Reviews]

1. ATOTO S8 Ultra – The Best Apple CarPlay Head Unit of 2022

1. ATOTO S8 Ultra – The Best Apple CarPlay Head Unit of 2022

If you’re looking for the best possible Apple CarPlay experience, then you need to check out the ATOTO S8 Ultra. This head unit provides an incredibly intuitive and responsive CarPlay experience, making it the perfect choice for anyone who wants the best possible infotainment system in their vehicle.

Key Features

  • 7-inch Full HD Display –  The intuitive Full HD display makes it easy to navigate even while driving, and the capacitive touch screen ensures responsive control. With built-in phone mirroring and integration link capabilities, the S8 Ultra lets you make calls, access your music, and control other smartphone functions without ever having to take your eyes off the road.

  • Built-in Navigation system – The ATOTO S8 Ultra 2 is the perfect GPS/Navigation device for all of your needs. With its built-in GPS Receiver and external antenna, you’ll never lose your way again. Plus, with Google Maps installed as the default map application, navigating anywhere is a breeze. And if you prefer another navigation app, no problem! The Google Play Store has tons of great options to choose from.

  • Split Screen – This amazing car stereo system comes with a ton of features that are sure to make any ride more enjoyable. Some of our favorite features include the split screen display which lets you watch videos or navigate while still being aware of your surroundings, and the digital photo frame option which allows you to showcase your favorite memories as you drive. 

  • Plus, the speed compensated volume control ensures that you never have to deal with uncomfortable road noise levels again. And if that’s not enough, the USB network tethering feature lets you use your phone as a hotspot so you can stay connected even while on the go. 
  • Easy installation – This model is universal, so it can be installed in any vehicle. Plus, it comes with all the necessary accessories to get you up and running in no time. Whether you’re a music lover or a movie buff, the ATOTO S8 Ultra is sure to please.

  • Additional Features – ATOTO S8 also has many other features such as: DSP technology for the best sound quality; 4-channel 50W x 4 power amplifier; 6-line 2V preouts (4V RMS); built-in MOSFET amplifier; rear USB port for iPod connection; dual Bluetooth connection.
  • The sound quality and noise cancelling aspect is fantastic
  • Numerous features to customize both the sound and display settings
  • The voice recognition is awesome and you can program the steering wheel controls any way you want Touchscreen is responsive
  • Dual USB input
  • GPS Navigation works even at Offline
  • Low Price Compared to other head units
  • Verizon SIM cards do not work with ATOTO products
  • The unit can be challenging to learn and use all the features

2. Pioneer DMH-W4660NEX Best Wireless Apple CarPlay Stereo

Best Wireless Apple CarPlay Stereo

“If you’re looking for a quality wireless Apple CarPlay stereo, the Pioneer DMH-W4660NEX is the best option on the market. With its easy-to-use interface and great sound quality, it’s the perfect way to stay connected while on the go. Plus, its built-in navigation system makes it a great choice for anyone who wants to be able to get around without having to rely on their phone. So if you’re in the market for a new car stereo, the Pioneer DMH-W4660NEX is the perfect option.”

Key Features

  • Capacitive Touchscreen Display – This double din stereo comes with a 6.8” Capacitive touchscreen display, which offers bright and color images, also the touch response of this stereo is sensitive.

  • Wireless Apple CarPlay, Android Auto – The Pioneer DMH-W4660NEX is a great car stereo that allows you to use Apple Carplay, Android Auto Wireless, or Amazon Alexa. With a wireless connection or a wired connection through USB, the DMH-W4660NEX is compatible with many different devices.

  • Built-in 13 Band EQ – The Pioneer DMH-W4660NEX gives you the power to fine-tune your sound like never before. With its 13-band graphic equalizer and other sound tools, you can create an audio experience that’s perfect for your ears. Plus, with three sets of preamp outputs, you can easily add more amps for even more power.

  • HD Radio Tuner – The HD Radio tuner lets your listen with improved clarity and detail from AM/FM frequencies; add in a SiriusXM receiver so that all their programming can be accessed by simply plugging it into the rear USB input – there’s even space dedicated just  for those high resolution FLAC or DSD files if music is what really turns us off during our commute hours!

  • Great Bluetooth Connection – The Pioneer DMH-W4660NEX lets you keep your hands on the wheel and eyes on the road while you make calls. With Bluetooth, you can easily stream music, podcasts, and audiobooks too.

  • iDatalink Maestro Compatible – It offers compatibility with the iDatalink Maestro module (not included), which lets you keep your factory features intact. Plus, the wide selection of compatible vehicles makes it easy to find one that will work for your car.

  • Phone swapping – With phone swapping, you can easily plug in the phone you want to use without having to choose a particular input or adjust menu settings. Plus, with built-in Amazon Alexa, you can access music, audiobooks, news, weather, traffic, and smart home controls using your voice.

  • Dual Backup Camera input – With the additional input, you can easily add a second camera and get a better view of what’s happening around your car. Whether you need to keep an eye on your tow vehicle or just want an alternate rearview, this product is perfect for you.
  • Responsive Touchscreen Display
  • Wireless Apple CarPlay works perfectly and connects with-in seconds
  • Simple and Easy to Use Interface
  • The sound quality is clear and loud , also there are multiple settings available to customize the audio
  • The hands free calling also works great
  • No Volume knob
  • The touch buttons are also tiny, so it’s optimal to use a steering wheel control with this receiver.

3. Sony XAV-AX5500 – Best Single Din Apple CarPlay Stereo

Sony XAV AX5500 Review 1

Our 3rd best Apple CarPlay stereo is from Sony.

“If you’re looking for the best single din Apple CarPlay stereo on the market, then you need to check out the Sony XAV-AX5500. This stereo offers everything you could want in a CarPlay unit, and then some. With its large touchscreen display, easy-to-use interface, and stellar sound quality, the Sony XAV-AX5500 is the perfect choice for anyone looking to upgrade their car’s audio system.”

Sony apple carplay stereo

Key Features

  • Single Din Touchscreen Display–  The Sony XAV-AX5500 offers a 6.95-inch touchscreen display, making it one of the largest single din head units on the market. Handy buttons for quick control, and a compact chassis that makes installation very convenient, this unit has everything you need to stay entertained on the road.

  • Superior Sound Quality – When it comes to sound quality, the XAV-AX5500 doesn’t disappoint. It offers 4 x 55W of power, as well as built-in amplifiers for an even better sound. And, if you’re looking to add some extra bass, there’s also a subwoofer output.

  • Compact Design – This sleek unit doesn’t have a disc player, but that’s actually its advantage: its compact design means it can fit into spaces other receivers can’t. And with its large 7″ screen, the XAV-AX5500 is perfect for anyone who wants all their music at their fingertips.
  • Easy to Use -The stereo’s controls behave just like your phone’s interface, so there is no learning curve. Plus it comes with everything you need – all that has to be plugged into an Android or iPhone device! You’ll get access not only navigation on demand but also calls and messages through the music player app as well- making this car even smarter than most cars today already are!.
  • 10 Band Graphic Equalizer – This receiver features a 10-band graphic equalizer and Dynamic Stage Organizer (DSO) to create virtual speakers on your dash, giving you an improved soundstage.  
  • Dual USB – This amazing unit features two USB inputs, so you can keep your phone charged and access your files on the go. It also supports FLAC audio files and a variety of video formats, making it perfect for any media lover. 
  • 5 volt Preamp Outs – The XAV-AX5000 includes 5-volt front, rear, and subwoofer preamp outputs, making it easy to add amplifiers to your system. Plus, with its clear and natural sound, the Sony XAV-AX5500 is sure to impress.
  • Easy Installation due to premade wiring harness
  • Great Display and Sound Quality
  • Numerous settings to customize the audio such as low pass, high pass and custom EQ
  • Physical Volume and skip buttons
  • No option to change the wallpaper or order of icons on Home Screen
  • The Price is little higher than other stereos

4. Kenwood DMX4707S – Best Budget Apple CarPlay Stereo

Kenwood DMX4707S Review

Our third best Apple CarPlay stereo is from Kenwood.

The DMX4707S from Kenwood is a great receiver for those who want the convenience of Apple CarPlay as well as Phone Mirroring Feature.

With its fixed 6.8″ widescreen capacitive touchscreen LCD, you’ll enjoy a high contrast ratio, crystal clear display, and vivid text. Plus, the capacitive touchscreen LCD provides a highly responsive touchscreen so you can easily control your music, phone calls, and more.

  • Voice Control – This multimedia receiver offers an intuitive voice controlled interface, large touchscreen monitor, and superior sound quality. You can also use the Mirroring OA for Kenwood app to mirror the content from your Android smartphone onto the touchscreen display. With Google Maps or Waze, you’ll be able to navigate to where you need to go with ease.

  • Backup Camera Support – The Kenwood DMX4707S is a great car stereo for those who want to improve their safety while driving. The rear view camera input with parking guide lines makes backing up much easier and safer.

  • Built-in EQ  – 13 band graphic EQ and time alignment allows you to customize the sound quality to your own preferences. With this stereo, you can have a great driving experience while keeping yourself and your passengers safe.

  • Phone mirroring – With True Mirroring via USB, you can easily see and control your phone right on the screen of the head unit. Plus, it comes with SiriusXM Radio so you can access additional music, sports and entertainment content while on the go. And if that wasn’t enough, the DMX4707S also supports FLAC files and Full HD video playback from USB devices! So whether you’re looking to keep yourself entertained on long road trips or just want easier access to your music and videos, this is the perfect product for you.
  • Touchscreen is quite sensitive
  • Great Display color and Resolution
  • The backup camera supports adjustable parking lines
  • Built-in equalizer, crossover.
  • Shallow Chassis size, some space will be left behind the unit for adapter when installating
  • Installation takes time
  • No Physical Volume Knobs. It is recommended to use a steering wheel remote with this unit, inorder to avoid distraction

5. JVC KW-M150BT – Great Option from JVC

JVC KW M150BT Review

The last and the best Apple CarPlay head unit in our list is from JVC Car Audio.

With the JVC KW-M560BT, you can have all of your music at your fingertips. This multimedia player features Apple CarPlay and Android Auto so you can easily access all of your favorite tunes. 

Key Features

  • Large Capacitive Display – The large 6.75” capacitive screen provides a clear view of what’s on the screen, while also being responsive to your touch. Plus, the shallow mounting depth makes it perfect for newer vehicles with smaller radio cavities.

  • Compatible with Apple CarPlay & Auto – Whether you’re looking for a way to use all your favorite apps on the go or just want an easy interface that will work with any phone, this car stereo has what it takes. It features both Apple CarPlay and Android Auto so users can choose which platform suits them best while they drive without worrying about getting lost because there’s no need! Plus, thanks to its compatibility across multiple devices.

  • Safe Driving via Bluetooth Hands free –  The Bluetooth audio and hands-free calling lets you keep your phone safely tucked away while you’re driving, and the MP3 player means you can take your tunes with you wherever you go. 

  • Built-in EQ –  The 13-band EQ ensures that your music always sounds its best, and the SiriusXM radio gives you access to tons of great programming. The AM/FM car radio rounds out this impressive package.

  •  Time Alignment – This receiver comes with time alignment options and premade presets to help you fine-tune your sound. Plus, it’s compatible with most factory steering wheel audio controls so you can keep your hands on the wheel. And if you want to really crank up the volume, the built-in amp provides 21 watts RMS/45 peak x 4 channels of power.
  • Affordable Price
  • Easy to read Display
  • Built-in Equalizer settings
  • Touchscreen is respnosive and works great
  • Support Phone mirroring feature
  • NO Physical Buttons.
  • The OS is little slow compared to other units
  • No automatic dimming

Buyer’s Guide: Things to Keep in Mind While Buying  Apple CarPlay Stereo.

Why would you want a new radio? Well, these things do an awful lot. They power your speakers and can give a bigger sound with more power to play music through them or make calls on the phone while driving safer by integrating both features into one device!

There are some few things which you should consider while upgrading to a new CarPlay Stereo such as Display Quality, Connectivity, Boot-up time, Peak Power and RMS. Below we have explained these terms.

Display Quality: It is important to make sure your double-din head unit has a high resolution screen. With more pixels, the image will look clearer and sharper when viewing angles are corrected for size as well! It’s also essential that these screens respond quickly so there isn’t any lag time between touches or movements on interface elements like menus which require quick reactions from drivers behind the wheel.

In addition – don’t let glare off road conditions stop you either because many expensive models have been designed with element protection in mind anyway possible.

Connectivity: One major thing to check when shopping for your car audio system is the connectivity options. You should have both USB and wireless capabilities so that you can easily connect any smartphone or tablet with ease, especially if it’s not in- Arduous position while driving!

Look for an AM/FM radio: This means that this car stereo will provide the basic functions of listening to the radio but it won’t have any other features. If you really want a radio with extra features, you may have to buy two separate units.

Wireless Apple CarPlay: Wireless connectivity is what makes the stereo system stand out from others on this list, and it’s also one of the main features that sets it apart from its competitors. With a simple tap on your phone or tablet you can connect with your favorite songs or radio station for listening anywhere in range (up to 50 feet). The built-in USB port allows users to charge their device while they’re enjoying themselves too!

Boot-up time: The other thing you should look out for is how quickly it can be turned on and ready to use. Most of the aftermarket head units take 10 – 50 seconds to boot.

Appearance:  Some stereos are better looking than others. If looks matter to you, consider what kind of design would go best with the rest of your car.

Warranty:  It’s always good if your car stereo has some kind of warranty; this means that if anything happens to it, you can have it mended for free.

Which stereo has wireless CarPlay?

The Pioneer DMH-W4660NEX is compatible with wireless Apple CarPlay, which means that you can connect your iPhone to the head unit and have all of your music come through the speakers wirelessly. This is great for those who want their phone’s screen instead of being stuck in one position on a cup holder or dashboard!

What is the cheapest Apple CarPlay radio?

The Kenwood DMX4707S is the cheapest Apple CarPlay radio on this list. It’s also one of the few that has built-in Bluetooth, so you can connect your phone to make and take hands-free calls or stream music without an additional purchase.

How much does it cost to install Apple CarPlay?

The average cost to install Apple CarPlay is between $200 and $400. However, this price can vary depending on the make and model of your vehicle, as well as the location of the installation. For example, installing Apple CarPlay in a luxury vehicle may cost more than installing it in a less expensive car. Additionally, some independent car stereo shops may charge less for installation than a dealership.

How much is CarPlay installation at Best Buy?

CarPlay installation at Best Buy typically costs around $200. However, the price may vary depending on the make and model of your vehicle. You can schedule an appointment with a Best Buy Auto Center to get a more accurate estimate for your particular vehicle.

Can you add Apple CarPlay to a car that doesn’t have it?

Yes, you can add Apple CarPlay to a car that doesn’t have it. You will need to purchase an aftermarket head unit that is compatible with Apple CarPlay. Alternatively, some automakers offer retrofit kits that allow you to add Apple CarPlay to your existing infotainment system.

Does CarPlay sound better than Bluetooth?

Yes, CarPlay often sounds better than Bluetooth. This is because CarPlay allows for a higher quality of audio streaming, since it’s specifically designed to work with cars. Additionally, CarPlay integrates with your car’s built-in voice control system, which makes it easy to make calls, listen to music, and get directions without ever having to take your hands off the wheel.

I am Miles Walker, founder of I'm a car audio enthusiast who loves to help others learn about car audio and installation.

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