Digital radio – your questions answered - Retro-fit DAB options

Article 4 of 5 See all
  • Be prepared for the switch to DAB
  • Does your car maker have it covered
  • Retro-fit options reviewed, too
The Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders’ (SMMT) Paul Everitt has suggested that digital radios and the engineers that fit them could have to meet quality standards, but what are the options?

Here we've listed some of the DAB retro-fit options you might like to consider if your car hasn't already got one. We've included units from £89 to £399, so there should be an option to suit everyone.

Retro-fit DAB options
Here are some DAB options to help you prepare for the switchover – whenever it is.

Product Celsus MediaDAB
Price RRP £399.99 plus installation (around £80 depending on vehicle)
Available from 50 dealers nationwide, more info at www.incardigitalradio.co.uk
With no dashboard mounting and complete integration with the car’s existing system, this is the neatest way to upgrade to DAB. It’s not cheap though, with prices starting at a hefty £399 – one for the premium brands.

Product Pure Highway 300Di
Price £179.99 (plus £24.99 fitting)
Available from Halfords
Pure’s latest dashboard-mounted unit is discreet, easy to use, free from trailing wires and doesn’t require you to drill holes in your dash. Halfords is throwing in free installation until the end of 2011 and can move it to another vehicle should you choose to sell your car and keep the kit.

Product Pioneer Appradio
Price £400
Available from Halfords, Currys, Richer Sounds and more
The Pioneer accesses digital radio via an iPhone 4 or 4S rather than DAB. This means it relies on your phone keeping its signal to maintain the music, and requires you to have the latest Apple handset. However, with Bluetooth, AM/FM radio and many in-built apps, it’s a full gadget-fest replacement for your current head unit.

Product Parrot Asteroid
Price £299
Available from www.parrot.com/uk
This attractive internet radio is geared up for both the Android and the iPhone market, and also takes its connection via a smart phone. However, a 3G dongle should do the same job and hold the signal better.

Product Sonichi S1000
Price £89.99
Available from Halfords
This is the cheapest way to get digital radio in your car without stripping out the original unit, and the Sonichi is Halfords’ own-brand product.

It’s simple in looks and should be easy to use, but will require cabling in the car’s cabin.

Product Connects2 AutoDAB
Price tbc (but sub-£200)
Available from www.connects2.com
Like the Celsus, this system slots away under the dash and integrates with your existing system. Expect to see a few of Connects2’s products in the future, because it’s Alfa Romeo’s DAB partner. It also fits into 19 other brands’ systems.

Digital radio – your questions answered - £21m investment for digital radio switchover

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