Car GPS – 3 Benefits Apart From Finding Your Location

Most people are very thankful to have a car GPS system installed in their vehicles because it helps them navigate with a great deal of ease. These high tech devices help drivers find places that are hard to locate because of unfamiliarity since they mark the location of the vehicle on a road map. Like most people who use these devices, you are sure to appreciate this feature which is after all the main benefit it offers. However, you will also be glad to know that a car GPS system also offers many more benefits. Needless to say, all GPS systems do not necessarily offer the same features and their prices vary accordingly.

Some of the additional benefits offered by vehicle GPS devices include:

1. Alerting of emergency services in case your vehicle breaks down or is involved in an accident. This can prove to be a lifesaver in certain situations, especially when the people in the car are not able to call for help themselves. This is generally a paid service but plenty of people feel that it is a worthwhile investment for very obvious reasons.

2. Helping the law enforcement authorities locate your car in the event that it has been stolen. The police will be able to track your car’s movements with absolute accuracy thanks to its GPS device. This will also help minimize the damage to your car since you’ll be able to get it back from the criminals before they have had a chance to strip it of its valuables.

3. Providing you with information about nearby places of interest. If you generally spend time looking for restaurants, hospitals, ATMs, gas stations and the like then your GPS device can be programmed to pop up information about nearby places that you seek. It will also give you directions to reach the place in addition to the estimated driving time; all extremely useful information that can help you to drive better.

Make sure that you select the best possible car GPS system for your vehicle based upon the features that it offers. Be sure to select a device of the right size so that it does not take up too much place on your car’s dashboard. Price is also a very important factor to be considered. The many options available in the market these days ensure that you will be able to find the right device at the best possible price.

Finding a Car Audio Head Unit That Rocks

If you’re considering upgrading your automobile’s sound system, chances are your first step will be to replace the factory head unit with an aftermarket product. Provided you already have working speakers, this move can instantly improve the sound. There are several names for this component of the system, and one is “head unit,” which applies to any dash-mounted interface that controls car audio.

Varieties of Head Units

Tuner – A unit that lacks built-in power amplification. Tuners require an additional amplifier to power the speakers.

Receiver – One that contains an onboard amp. A receiver can be used to power an existing set of speakers without other equipment.

Controller – An interface that has no radio function, although it may include any combination of CD, DVD, cassette, auxiliary and/or USB inputs.

Mechless – A receiver or tuner without CD, DVD, or cassette capabilities. “Mechless” refers to the absence of mechanical (moving) components, as these devices instead feature solid state construction. These pieces of gear can have auxiliary, USB, and Bluetooth® compatibility as well.

Some of these categories overlap. For example, controllers and mechless heads can exist with or without built-in amps. You’ll have to read the specs of any equipment that interests you to make sure it meets your requirements.

What Do You Need?

Now that you know the basic distinctions, you’ve got to consider the factors that may influence your decision on what car audio equipment to install. If you just want to replace what’s in the dash first, you’ll need something with its own power to get sound out of your factory speakers. However, if you plan on upgrading your speakers and adding subwoofers and tweeters for an all-out overhaul of your car audio system, you will likely need an external amplifier to supply sufficient juice. In this situation, you may want to buy a receiver with preamp outputs. These outs will bypass the onboard power, causing less distortion so you can bump louder music without sacrificing sound quality. If sound quality is your focus and loudness is not important, you can save money by foregoing the amp and subs, using a unit with sufficient power and buying better quality door speakers.

Now think about getting into your car and being in the mood to blast your favorite songs. What would you reach for? Do you have a vast collection of CDs you’d like to slip in and listen to all the way through? If so, you definitely need a model with a disc player. Maybe you’ve ditched the hard copies, and your music is stored digitally on your smartphone or dedicated audio player. In this case, you may elect to go fully mechless and play your library through a USB connection for the best audio. If streaming services on your phone are your preferred method of music retrieval, an interface with dedicated Bluetooth is handy, or, at the very least, an auxiliary jack should be present.

With what you now know about the brain of your car audio system, you can prioritize the features most important to you and search for a product that offers them all within your budget.