My car's USB adapter makes staticy noises over the radio. Should I replace it, and if so, with what?
When I got my car, I bought several car adapters, including a cellphone charger and a USB adapter, both cheapie generics from eBay megasellers. The problem is that my USB charger is what I use to run my GPS (which I bought used with a bad battery and defective car charger, so I use the USB adapter to run it instead), and whenever I plug it in to the USB adapter, it creates static, or maybe somehow grounds the signal so that less of the signal comes in. Can you tell I'm not an electronic engineer? Also, if I am really close to a reasonably high power station, I get little to no effect.
It seems to be largely based on where the cable is, and I've tried it with several cables with similar results. I did try it once with a USB cable that had a barrel type thing on the end, probably meant to control RF interference, but it only helped marginally. However, it came with a camera, and it was a small barrel type thing (I know it's a bead of some material inside, but I'm not that smart...). If the cable is closer to the head unit, the static is worse, but it's not as bad with the external antenna. However, that's probably because there's a metal bar in between the cable and the antenna on my PT Cruiser, so that's probably the station there.
My cellphone charger causes some trouble when I hold it close, but I keep my charging phone in the arm rest instead of near the radio, so it has little to no effect on radio signal.
I'd like to get a new USB charger, preferably with more ports so I can charge my GPS and iPod at the same time, or perhaps a firewire port as well for faster iPod charging, if the newer ones still support it (my Nano does, but not for data). Is there a model with less of an RF sent over the cables problem? Or is this an issue with my cables or radio? I have no trouble getting smaller radio stations from farther away when the USB charger is not plugged in, so I think the antenna is probably properly installed. For what it's worth, the radio is a Chrysler 2007 PT Cruiser stock REF radio, and I'm not entirely happy with it since it has a loose AUX port on the face, but I put up with it and I'm in no rush to replace it.
I've been looking at this
, and this
. I want it to be under $15, preferably under $10, and I might ask for it as a christmas gift, so if it has a distinctive brand name or shape, that makes it easier to ask for without having to get the wrong thing or feeling bad for asking for something really specific. I'm not too big on inverters, as I'm worried they'd be expensive and I'd start abusing them for bigger things and then pop a fuse in my car. I don't really need to daisychain another car adapter, since I have two ports and only really want to charge 3 gadgets in my car (GPS, phone, iPod), and rarely all at once.
The interference does not coordinate wtih any band of the radio, and I'm only trying it with FM, as I don't like any of the AM stations.