What is RGB on the Android Headunits?


And do I need it?

RGB is often mentioned in the sales pitches for Android headunits but is usually only described with a picture. RGB looks pretty, but the practical uses or need to have it isn’t explained. Some Android headunits have RGB, and some don’t have RGB, but is it worth spending more to get one with RGB?


RGB is an abbreviation of Red, Green, and Blue—the 3 color – tri-color LEDs fitted into the buttons and touch pads of the android headunit. A microprocessor inside the Android headunit can control the voltage independently to each of the R, G, and B LEDs to create a button illumination of a color you choose.

RGB Buttons on Android Headunit
Processed By eBay with ImageMagick, z1.1.0. ||B2

Now you know what RGB can do for your Android headunit. It can match your vehicle button illumination, making the Android headunit integrate better with the vehicle and a much more pleasing experience.

RGB App to select button colors
RGB button color selection is by an app. Easy to use the color wheel.

Button color RGB selection is by an app installed on the Android headunit.
All the buttons are sent the same color, so you can’t have different color buttons simultaneously. All the LEDs will be the color set in the app.
Not all apps are created equally; some are easier to use than others. Thankfully you only have to do this RGB set-up once to get the button color you want.

Difficult to use RGB selector app for android headunit
Not a very easy-to-use android headunit RGB app.

The RGB app is tailored to that particular model of android headunit. The RGB is not part of Android, so there is no standard. Using an app from a different manufacturer or model will unlikely be helpful if you find your factory-installed RGB app difficult.

Do I need RGB?

If you choose an Android headunit with no RGB function, the ability to change the button colors will be non-existent. Even installing the RGB color control app won’t help you. The LEDs fitted to non-RGB android headunits are White, and the buttons illuminate White without color selection.

RGB vs. White

You may be happy with white illumination for the buttons or even have white illumination in your vehicle. There is a material cost to the huge factories that produce the Android Headunits, and shaving a fraction of the cost of RGB over White LEDs can help produce a cheaper Android headunit. This is why you will often find RGB missing from the very cheap models of Android headunit, and if this is the reason to avoid them, then that is a good thing.

Set and forget

Should you choose an android headunit with RGB feature?
Yes, if you only use the app once, it makes a big difference to the level of integration to your vehicle. Check our reviews for ‘+ has RGB‘ to indicate that the android headunit is RGB capable. Otherwise, your button illumination will always be just White.

I am an android-headunits.com staff blogger. I have been using Android on my devices for many years and have learned a lot about the features and best hardware to keep up with the latest Android versions. I also make the coffee ☕

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