Automotive

ATOTO A6 Pro Android Double Din Unit

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  • Jul 15th, 2020 8:46 pm
20 replies
Deal Expert
Mar 23, 2004
33252 posts
15102 upvotes
Good ol' ATOTO, lol. A brand no one has ever heard of and you will probably not hear of again like 6 mos. after buying that thing. It's probably branded under 5 other brand names though (mass produced).

These no-name/off-brand "Android HUs" often pack in a crap ton of features and [promised] functionality but almost always fall very short on sound quality and reliability. They are cheap but you also get no support. I mean the reviews look good and all, but you should be a bit wary of Amazon reviews as well.

It might end up being great, but if it doesn't it's basically $350 out the window. If there's no tax on these units off Amazon (?) that's a bonus though. One of the nice things about these things is they are fairly "open" and one can install apps from the Play store and stuff just like one would do on a phone/tablet. Where they usually fall short though is the sound quality and pre-outs, this is typically a major Achilles heel for them. There usually isn't any good EQ, time-alignment, etc. functionality, and there's usually no xover functionality or proper fader and sub controls either. This is because they're based on being mobile phones/tablets, not head units, so the output is basically just stereo output over multiple pre-outs, not true multi-channel pre-outs. You can 100% forget about any flexible xover features that can be used to "go active" that many HUs today have as well.

I seen/heard a lot of these that were terrible... However, all that said, these things have improved a lot over the years and there are a lot of features and it looks great on paper. This one even mentions it has a 9-band EQ, which at least sounds good. They warn you not to attempt to root it because it's been "deeply customised" which is actually good thing in this case if it's really true. Something like this definitely needs to be customised to work well in a car--this is what the major makers have done with theirs only they are more closed-system and don't have the versatility of say having Play store/apps on them.

Personally I stick with the real car audio brands and the vast majority of installers/shops will recommend the same. Keep in mind you can get a high-end/flagship unit of Kenwood, Pio, etc. that's a couple years old as a NIB/NOS, refurb, or used unit for huge discounts from when they were new--the depreciation on these things is rather steep. I've been tempted here or there to get one of these Android jobbies to try out but nah, I'll stick with the stuff I've trusted since the 90s ;)
Deal Fanatic
Dec 20, 2018
7250 posts
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Co-worker got one and seems very happy with it and gets carplay and AA work as well as replacement for factory unit

They have support (he had issues after first install) by sending them video of the issue
[OP]
Deal Fanatic
Nov 1, 2006
9075 posts
3080 upvotes
Toronto
ES_Revenge wrote: Good ol' ATOTO, lol. A brand no one has ever heard of and you will probably not hear of .....

Personally I stick with the real car audio brands and the vast majority of installers/shops will recommend the same. Keep in mind you can get a high-end/flagship unit of Kenwood, Pio, etc....

I've been tempted here or there to get one of these Android jobbies to try out but nah, I'll stick with the stuff I've trusted since the 90s ;)
Yes, I'd certainly prefer to buy a known brand, or one of these units from a reputable source but saw this one very positively reviewed and wondered.
Deal Expert
Mar 23, 2004
33252 posts
15102 upvotes
Jimbobs wrote: Yes, I'd certainly prefer to buy a known brand, or one of these units from a reputable source but saw this one very positively reviewed and wondered.
It's worth a shot, I mean the price is pretty cheap (and indeed there are no taxes, I did a test checkout), on paper it looks good and it at least seems like they've gone to some length to customise the OS for a car stereo as opposed to being a generic tablet implementation. It also has some intersetting add-ons like dashcam (1080p, unknown quality), bird's-eye-cam, etc.

There's also a version with gesture-control, which I guess is trying to mimic modern factory HUs which have such features. I wonder how good a job they did though--for $50 extra it's probably not worth it to find out lol.

Keep in mind this is an Android-based HU. It has a custom ROM on it but it's still behaving like an Android device otherwise so it doesn't support Android Auto or CarPlay on its own. I dunno why you'd need that anyway but it is simplified and helps to keep focus on the road instead of trying to use your HU as if it were a cellphone, which is what you're really doing with one of these. However there is a $99 add-on that supported wireless CP and wired AA, if you want either.

If you're installing yourself it might be worth a whirl. Dunno if there are any return policies if it doesn't work out but if you're paying someone to install it I wouldn't bother because it'll be a waste of the install cost if it don't turn out too great. Plus as said, most pro installers will likely shy away from this stuff.
[OP]
Deal Fanatic
Nov 1, 2006
9075 posts
3080 upvotes
Toronto
ES_Revenge wrote: It's worth a shot, I mean the price is pretty cheap (and indeed there are no taxes, I did a test checkout), on paper it looks good and it at least seems like they've gone to some length to customise the OS for a car stereo as opposed to being a generic tablet implementation. It also has some intersetting add-ons like dashcam (1080p, unknown quality), bird's-eye-cam, etc.

There's also a version with gesture-control, which I guess is trying to mimic modern factory HUs which have such features. I wonder how good a job they did though--for $50 extra it's probably not worth it to find out lol.

Keep in mind this is an Android-based HU. It has a custom ROM on it but it's still behaving like an Android device otherwise so it doesn't support Android Auto or CarPlay on its own. I dunno why you'd need that anyway but it is simplified and helps to keep focus on the road instead of trying to use your HU as if it were a cellphone, which is what you're really doing with one of these. However there is a $99 add-on that supported wireless CP and wired AA, if you want either.

If you're installing yourself it might be worth a whirl. Dunno if there are any return policies if it doesn't work out but if you're paying someone to install it I wouldn't bother because it'll be a waste of the install cost if it don't turn out too great. Plus as said, most pro installers will likely shy away from this stuff.
Yes, I noticed the gesture contro but though I'd forego that. After all, the one thing I'd really like is a on/off, volume-control KNOB Face With Tears Of Joy

It will definitely be a DIY job which is very simple on the car I want to put it into - as long as I can source the right harness adaptors, etc. I'd also like to keep the existing steering wheel control so will need a CANbus adaptor.
Deal Addict
Oct 1, 2015
2573 posts
3491 upvotes
Barrie, ON
Atoto has been around for years. I'd probably search XDADevelopers then on here if you want useful info. Seems like a lot of talk with zero experience so far in this thread.
[OP]
Deal Fanatic
Nov 1, 2006
9075 posts
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Toronto
mxthor3 wrote: Atoto has been around for years. I'd probably search XDADevelopers then on here if you want useful info. Seems like a lot of talk with zero experience so far in this thread.
Zero experience on my part for sure but I think you're being unfair to other contributors.

Just checked out my existing config and realise my existing unit has built in amp so A6 would be only a first step for me. Have to look at the Atoto S8 units instead.
Deal Addict
Oct 1, 2015
2573 posts
3491 upvotes
Barrie, ON
Jimbobs wrote: Zero experience on my part for sure but I think you're being unfair to other contributors.

Just checked out my existing config and realise my existing unit has built in amp so A6 would be only a first step for me. Have to look at the Atoto S8 units instead.
I'm not to sure about that. I don't see any personal experience, just 'thoughts'. Typical for this place though. XDA is a much better resource for this type of stuff.
Deal Expert
Mar 23, 2004
33252 posts
15102 upvotes
Jimbobs wrote:
Yes, I noticed the gesture contro but though I'd forego that. After all, the one thing I'd really like is a on/off, volume-control KNOB Face With Tears Of Joy

It will definitely be a DIY job which is very simple on the car I want to put it into - as long as I can source the right harness adaptors, etc. I'd also like to keep the existing steering wheel control so will need a CANbus adaptor.
Well I consider "very simple" being w/o CAN bus involved but sometimes it actually makes things easier provided you got the right adapter but in terms of straight-forward simple wiring, CAN bus use is at least one step above the bare basics.

That said after reading more reviews (out of curiosity of how much improvement there actually could be these days) it seems there are a pretty good number of poor reviews as well, and a lot of reviews "resigned" to just saying "well you get what you pay for...it's alright...for the money" lol. So it seems it will still be pretty hit & miss overall. Not my cup of tea but I wouldn't say something like "avoid at all costs". It's up to you whether you think it's worth the dice-roll on around $350.
mxthor3 wrote: I'm not to sure about that. I don't see any personal experience, just 'thoughts'. Typical for this place though. XDA is a much better resource for this type of stuff.
LOL what you on about bro? XDA is a better resource for mobile electronics advice? Uh no that would be places like diyMA, CA forum, SMD forums, and a few relevant YT channels more like it. XDA is a great place for hacking your phone, tablet, custom roms, rooting, unlocking bootloaders--general android help, etc. but most of these people don't have a clue about mobile electronics or the industry. Yeah man go on xda to ask about things like running 3-way active (or even 2-way for that matter), building enclosures, vehicle wiring, specific vehicle installs, speakers/subwoofers, amps, remote starters, alarms, and all that stuff which it will surely be the bestest place evar to go on for such information :lol: Gimme. A. Break.

Sure there might be some mild knowledge of general car audio stuff but it's probably no better than what you'll find on AVS forum (great place for home A/V, not so much mobile A/V). But you know if you wanna drive a Philips screw with a slot-head screwdriver, hey it works right?

Sure go on xda to find out how to tweak an Android unit, root, custom rom, install this or that, or modify things so they aren't "broken" in the head unit perhaps, but don't go there for car audio advice. I don't want to go quite as far as saying..."Android HUs? You seen one, you seen 'em all" but it's pretty close to that statement. One doesn't have to have this exact HU in hand and have used it to know how Android HUs operate, the design principles, architecture, methods, caveats, etc. There are still some very good reasons why Android units aren't totally well-suited or tailored to the realm of car audio and if you don't get what those reasons are, then you don't know much about mobile electronics. That said, some of these things people may not care about or be affected by; and, some things (like startup time, flexibility/versatility in operation and features) can be much better. But these units aren't quite the same as implementing and using a traditional head unit from the likes of major brands (e.g. Kenwood, Pioneer, Alpine, etc.). The two are trying to converge to some degree with traditional makers trying to implement more "tablet-like" features, while the Android unit makers attempt to mimick more traditional car audio features. Still there's some pretty significant differences between these types of units.

But anyway, what do I know...I didn't get my mobile certification out of an xda cereal box I guess, so these are just the "thoughts" of a madman I suppose :lol:
Deal Addict
Oct 1, 2015
2573 posts
3491 upvotes
Barrie, ON
ES_Revenge wrote:

LOL what you on about bro? XDA is a better resource for mobile electronics advice? Uh no that would be places like diyMA, CA forum, SMD forums, and a few relevant YT channels more like it. XDA is a great place for hacking your phone, tablet, custom roms, rooting, unlocking bootloaders--general android help, etc. but most of these people don't have a clue about mobile electronics or the industry. Yeah man go on xda to ask about things like running 3-way active (or even 2-way for that matter), building enclosures, vehicle wiring, specific vehicle installs, speakers/subwoofers, amps, remote starters, alarms, and all that stuff which it will surely be the bestest place evar to go on for such information :lol: Gimme. A. Break.

Sure there might be some mild knowledge of general car audio stuff but it's probably no better than what you'll find on AVS forum (great place for home A/V, not so much mobile A/V). But you know if you wanna drive a Philips screw with a slot-head screwdriver, hey it works right?

Sure go on xda to find out how to tweak an Android unit, root, custom rom, install this or that, or modify things so they aren't "broken" in the head unit perhaps, but don't go there for car audio advice. I don't want to go quite as far as saying..."Android HUs? You seen one, you seen 'em all" but it's pretty close to that statement. One doesn't have to have this exact HU in hand and have used it to know how Android HUs operate, the design principles, architecture, methods, caveats, etc. There are still some very good reasons why Android units aren't totally well-suited or tailored to the realm of car audio and if you don't get what those reasons are, then you don't know much about mobile electronics. That said, some of these things people may not care about or be affected by; and, some things (like startup time, flexibility/versatility in operation and features) can be much better. But these units aren't quite the same as implementing and using a traditional head unit from the likes of major brands (e.g. Kenwood, Pioneer, Alpine, etc.). The two are trying to converge to some degree with traditional makers trying to implement more "tablet-like" features, while the Android unit makers attempt to mimick more traditional car audio features. Still there's some pretty significant differences between these types of units.

But anyway, what do I know...I didn't get my mobile certification out of an xda cereal box I guess, so these are just the "thoughts" of a madman I suppose :lol:
Atoto has been around for years and probably still will be in 6 months, unless you're a fortune teller with a crystal ball and know something the rest of us don't. XDA is a great place for reviews on exactly these types of headunits, which is why I suggested it to the OP after reading the replies he was getting from people with no personal experience with these headunits.. Love the long winded diatribe though, appreciate the paragraphs for easier reading.
Sr. Member
Apr 5, 2008
691 posts
97 upvotes
Vancouver
Don't do it. Although you may get lured in by all the features, sound quality is HORRIBLE. Like...noticeably worse than any base model branded unit. The UX was not that great either, it seemed like they just tried to cram as many apps as possible into it. I can live with a poor UX, but I absolutely couldn't stand the sound quality and returned mine.
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Nov 14, 2003
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LaLaLand
What's this all about??
Screenshot_20200714-215216_Chrome.jpg
[OP]
Deal Fanatic
Nov 1, 2006
9075 posts
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Toronto
batcave wrote: What's this all about??

Screenshot_20200714-215216_Chrome.jpg
One reviewer commented about these buttons being the reverse of the conventional arrangement. I think they were switched in a later version.
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Mar 30, 2004
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Jimbobs wrote: Have you tried one? They look good although dealing with Visions is a nightmare, in my limited experience.
I have one of the Boss units from Visions in my car. Android Auto and Carplay work fine which is what I bought it for. The native interface on the unit is terrible but functional enough for my needs. Also paired with a cheap backup camera from Amazon which works just fine.

And yes, works fine with the ASWC-1 steering wheel controls provided you wire it correctly.
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Nov 14, 2003
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LaLaLand
Jimbobs wrote: One reviewer commented about these buttons being the reverse of the conventional arrangement. I think they were switched in a later version.
Thanks, I emailed them and they sent me a photo of an actual unit and the buttons are in normal order.

There is a newer model now, https://www.amazon.ca/ATOTO-Navigation- ... B085C7NT1J
[OP]
Deal Fanatic
Nov 1, 2006
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Toronto
batcave wrote: Thanks, I emailed them and they sent me a photo of an actual unit and the buttons are in normal order.

There is a newer model now, https://www.amazon.ca/ATOTO-Navigation- ... B085C7NT1J
This is actually a different model. The A6, which I originally asked about is a head unit only, whereas this model S8 has an amplifier (4 x 24W RMS) built in to it.

The S8 actually suits my needs better than the A6.

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