Car Audio Talk: Is a Head Unit Same Thing as a Receiver?

The world of car audio systems uses a lot of terms that are unknown to people outside of the sector. So we wanted to dedicate an article to clear up two words that are frequently confused. A head unit and a receiver are actually very similar, so the confusion is understandable. Here’s the short version:

All receivers are head units, but not all head units are receivers.

Got it? Okay, we’ll break it down for you a little.

  • A receiver is a specific type of head unit. What makes a receiver unique is that it contains a built-in amplifier. For some buyers, this is preferred. Keep in mind that there are several varieties of receivers as well. For example, a basic receiver will look just like an ordinary car stereo, but with the added benefit of the built-in amp. On the other hand, there are receivers that have a full display screen where you can view your GPS and touch the screen to make musical choices.
  • A head unit refers to the part of the stereo system that you use to control your sound. It is the component that is mounted in the dashboard. So you can see how this covers a wide range of products, with receivers being just one type.

Get the Best Car Stereo Sales and Custom Installation in San Diego

Soundiego is your source for the best head units and custom stereo systems (whether you want to go with a receiver or would rather have a separate amplifier). Call 619.582.5577 to get your project on the schedule, or you can request a quote here.

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