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Vehicle manufacturers design car stereo head units in various sizes. You need to choose an aftermarket head unit based on your vehicle’s year, make and model. After market radios are normally rectangular. The standard car stereo size is referred to as single DIN. Most cars have single DIN stereo slots. The measurement of a standard DIN slot is 2-1/8” (50mm) height by 7-1/8” (180mm) width. Most car radios will slide directly into the single DIN slot without requiring an additional adapter kit. However, some DIN models may require an installation kit. Depending on availability, Sonic Electronix offers a free installation kit and wire harness with your order of a car stereo.
The second most common car stereo slot size is the DOUBLE DIN stereo opening. DOUBLE DIN slots are twice as tall as the standard single DIN slots, but they have the same width as single DIN stereos. We carry DOUBLE DIN car stereos that slide directly into the DOUBLE DIN slot. If you have the space, DOUBLE DIN models are great because they usually feature LCD monitors for video playback and GPS navigation. You can check our DOUBLE DIN guide to see if your vehicle has a DOUBLE DIN opening. If you have a DOUBLE DIN space but prefer a single din model, you can use a DOUBLE DIN adapter kit, which enable you to put a standard single DIN stereo into a DOUBLE DIN opening. The remaining space either houses a pocket for carrying your remote and other miscellaneous items, or an additional single DIN slot for adding a second DIN component.
There are also non-standard sizes. Many feel that the manufacturers (OEM) purposely design these custom sized head unit openings to dissuade consumers from upgrading to aftermarket systems. Despite their efforts, the aftermarket manufacturers constantly design kits and stereos to match these custom sizes. For example, another possible opening size is the 1.5 DIN slot size. Most often found in GM and Chrysler vehicles, these models tend to require adapter kits or custom installations to account for the shallow dash openings in GM and Chrysler vehicles. We carry customer fit head units on our website.
Regardless of classification (single DIN, DOUBLE DIN, 1.5 DIN, etc.), the stereo’s depth is unique for each model. The installation may require some customization if your vehicle has a relatively shallow cavity. Though you may wish to perform custom installs, it is always wisest to choose a model that will fit your car perfectly. Check out our fit guide to find out what will exactly fit your vehicle. This will save you a lot of time, money and hassle when it comes time to install your car stereo.
Written by Gary Brikowski
How to Install a Car Stereo
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