There are a lot of discussion about E39 head unit from Dynavin and Hualingan. Now here is my observation on both brand units.
This is how they are looked like in the car:
1. Front panel:
Outlook is subjective. We worked on keep original style of E39 cars and this is how DVN-E39 layout came out. Hualingan’s unit follows E46’s style.
Hualingan uses 7-inch screen, which is a little bit larger than ours, 6.2-inch. However, that causes difficulties on installation which is our main reason to avoid using 7-inch screen. You may refer to our another article describing why we put 6.2-inch screen on E39 design instead of 7-inch. (Link: http://www.dynavin.com.tw/news.php?news_id=15
There is one thing confusing me. Why there are two pins at upper left and right corners on front panel. They are useless to install the head unit and caused two holes after they are installed. This is quite weird.
Hualingan’s button is hard and different feeling when you use them. Instead, we changed button to soft rubber to make them more BMW genuine! About the backlight, Hualingan offers three colors, which are READ, PURPLE, and BLUE. However, there is no BMW genuine color, which is AMBER. We provide amber backlight color so that it will be more factory-like style. Moreover, Dynavin unit’s backlight can be adjusted to be lighter or dimmer by light adjustments, but there is nothing you can do on Hualingan.
3. Panel/Button quality:
At close look, you can compare the quality of Dynavin and Hualingan units.
Hualingan adopt single system (WinCE) to control all functionalities of head unit, which is common on many other Chinese head unit manufacturer. Dynavin understands and knows a lot about drawbacks of this way and takes different implementation: dual systems running simultaneously. As expected, the program switch on Hualingan unit is quite slow when heavy loading is applied from navigation software, say running 3D maps. And sometimes the system just hangs up because of insufficient system resources. This is not happening on Dynavin unit.
In one word, the system is much more stable and reliable on Dynavin unit.
5. DVD playback:
There is no difference between Hualingan and Dynavin.
Both Dynavin and Hualingan have two SD card slots; one for navigation maps and another for multimedia files playback.
About USB, Dynavin offers one more USB port than Hualingan, one is at front panel and the other two is from back chasis, ready to be extended to glove box. That keeps interior clean and neat!
Here are interfaces of USB/SD on both units:
After testing, sound quality of phone call by Bluetooth® connection on Dynavin is better than Hualingan. And we found the phonebook function on Hualingan cannot see phone numbers because there is no phone numbers uploading through Bluetooth from cell phone. That is what Dynavin can do.
Just like what we talked about system configuration, you can switch to other functions freely when there is phone call because Dynavin is dual system. Hualingan cannot do that. For example, you can switch back navigation maps when phone call comes and keep yourself on correct route!
8. Digital TV tuner:
The digital TV tuner on Dynavin is dual channel, high-definition (MPEG-4) decoding digital TV tuner box, which supports DVB-T and ATSC. Hualingan uses single-channel, standard definition (MPEG-2) decoding digital TV tuner box. The signal reception quality is worse than Dynavin. After our testing, we can achieve steady signal reception and quality to keep TV shows playing under speed of at least 160km/hr but Hualingan is only about 70km/hr.
9. iPod connection:
I am quite surprised at Hualingan unit cannot support my iPod nano with camera (8GB version). Instead, my iPod works fine on Dynavin’s unit. Dynavin can charge my iPod, and play music files perfectly. ID3TAG displaying and song browsing is user friendly. But there is one thing I think it should be improved is that when you switch to other mode or restart the unit, the iPod will be back to main menu instead from keeping in previous selection. Dynavin is working on it to fix that and new firmware release will resolve this issue in the future.
The radio on Dynavin and Hualingan is about the same. The difference is Dynavin can store radio station name instead of frequency only. That helps a lot to know which station I am listening to.
11. Navigation and new features:
Hualingan and Dynavin uses WinCE to run navigation maps. Therefore I do not see major difference between them. However, Dynavin develops a lot of new features such as 3G connection for internet surfing, and new services like GPS tracker, internet radio, and etc.
There is no other brand of head unit keep working on enhancing our entertainment on-the-move. I will cost much more to get a unit with less function and higher price from ALPINE™, PIONEER™, KENWOOD™, and etc. But I cannot find any other head unit except Dynavin, making my unit on the car more and more powerful.