Modern-day car stereo systems allow you to play from a variety of audio sources, be it CDs, DVDs, flash drives, Bluetooth audio, radio, ipods, SD cards, or HDDs. Nevertheless, if you are really keen on the quality of sound in your car, you may have to pull out your car’s original stereo system and install a new one.
Which brings us to the question, how much does it cost to install a car stereo?
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Factors That Determine The Cost Of Installing A New Car Stereo System
Several factors come into play when it comes to determining how much a new car stereo system will cost.
First on the list is the price of the individual components that make up the system. A good car stereo system has a head unit or receiver, an amplifier, and speakers, which should include a woofer and a subwoofer.
Secondly, you need to consider the cost of installation. Some people may decide to install the new system by themselves. This is okay provided you do know or have expertise on the matter. If not, you are advised to call a professional. This will help prevent any damage to the vehicle’s wiring system.
Additionally, you can count on your system working properly. Since an expert has tonnes of experience, you can rest assured your stereo system will look good and perfectly in place.
Third and last, you have to budget for miscalleosts that may arise, say new wiring.
Total Cost Of Installation Per Hour
Hiring an expert to install the car system is the most advisable action to take. While there are many, Do-It-Yourself Videos on YouTube, you may end up damaging other parts of the car, or the end result may look sloppy.
Most companies charge $45 for half an hour of installation. An hour of the installation may set you back $85 to $100.
It is not really possible to determine the precise cost of installing a new stereo system. This is because components from different manufacturers vary in price depending on their quality. However, the least amount of money one can spend on a car’s stereo system is $400. On average, a high-quality car sound system will cost anywhere between $400 to $1100.
The Cost Of Installing Individual Stereo Components
Like I have mentioned earlier, a car’s stereo system has 3 major components; a head unit, an amplifier, and speakers. It is important to note that the price if any particular component is dependent on its quality as well as the place where you buy it from.
The head unit is the most integral part of a car’s stereo system. It is referred to as the brain of the entire system by most experts and includes an array of devices from auxiliary inputs to CD players, DVD players, and tuners. It also features built-in components such as equalizers and amplifiers.
The head unit performs 3 major functions. It produces a signal, accesses audio sources that have been connected to the unit and controls sound levels. Installing one usually involves removing the dashboard then mounting the head unit with kit. You then connect the wire harness as well as the antenna adapter. The last step is reinstalling the dashboard panel. A DVD player and a GPS antenna can also be installed if desired when mounting the head unit.
The cost of a good one ranges from $80 to $200. You can, however, purchase some for as high as $1000, depending on your budget. The labor cost of installing a head unit starts as low as $125 and can get as high as $400 in cities such as New York, according to Yelp.
The amplifier is used to improve the quality of sound in your car. It also increases the power of signals produced by the head unit so that they are strong enough to move the car’s speakers, which in turn creates sound. Amplifiers are mostly placed in the trunk of the car or under a seat.
The amplifier is mounted in the designated area, and the power harness is connected. This step is followed by connecting wires from the source of the sound to the speakers.
A high-quality mono amplifier costs anywhere between $40 to $200. A multi-channel amplifier should set you back $80-$400. Labor cost will set you back between $119 to $129, according to Best Buy.
While the head unit might be the most important part of the car’s stereo system, the speakers are the most prominent components. They produce the sound that you hear and bring music or whatever audio content you are listening to life. How? They receive signals from the amplifier, which are in the form of electrical energy and then convert it into mechanical energy, which consequently generates sound waves. Speakers come in all sorts of shapes and sizes.
There are two types of speakers that can be used in a car’s stereo system. These are full-range speakers and component speakers. Full-range speakers are also known as coaxial speakers. Most cars come with these. They take up very little space and are cheap. Coaxial speakers have all elements of a speaker in one basket. I am talking of a woofer for low frequencies, a tweeter that is mounted on the woofer for high frequencies, and midrange drivers for midrange frequencies. These cost between $20 to $70. As for labor, you will be charged about $65.
Component speakers are superior to full-range speakers. Their design features separate tweeters, woofers, and external crossovers. These types of speakers offer a more detailed and dynamic sound. A good set of component speakers costs between $50 to $350, and labor costs $100.