How can I hear my iPhone in my 2003 Jetta?
November 14, 2008 1:32 PM   Subscribe

The tape deck in my 2003 VW Jetta is having some issues, they want $350 to replace and install it..I only want to hear my iPhone without crackling...what are my options?

So my tape deck is crackling. I have tested other tape adapters and other iphones and have determined it is the tape deck itself, not the iPhone.

So what are my non $350 options? Does anyone know if an aux cable can be put in that 2003 would it compare price wise?

Can I buy a used radio and just pay the $95 labor? Will they do that?

I thought about an FM transmitter but the GSM static from the 1st Gen iPhone would seem to kill that idea.

Any other thoughts?
posted by UMDirector to Technology (8 answers total)
An aftermarket unit will probably work and sound better and be much cheaper. Crutchfield has a helpful website for finding one that fits and works with your pre-existing wiring. If you don't feel like tackling the job yourself (really not that hard, check the videos out) you could probably pay the neighbor's kid to do it, etc.

If you want a factory replacement you can call around to local junk yards to see what they have. Also try eBay.
posted by wfrgms at 1:47 PM on November 14, 2008

All signs point to yes. See this rundown to find your radio and compatibility. There are 3 options here. You can use the following for $70. You will lose the use of your trunk CD changer though.
posted by clarkie666 at 1:48 PM on November 14, 2008 [2 favorites]

(Oh and there are a host of aftermarket units out there which have specific iPhone and iPod hook ups... shop around.)
posted by wfrgms at 1:48 PM on November 14, 2008

I use the Blitzsafe adapter clarkie666 posted in my 02 Jetta, and it sounds sooooo much better than a tape adapter. You'll need a set of stereo keys to pop your stereo out and install it, but it can easily be done at home.
posted by booknerd at 1:51 PM on November 14, 2008

Yes, a third-party stereo will have all sorts of features. Some have bluetooth and USB slots. Almost all have aux connectors to run a mini-jack cable to the cabin. Your dealer stereo wont usually have this and there's no reason to buy a tape radio anymore.

If you want to keep your radio and have an aux cable you can buy an fm modulator that fits between the antenna of your car and the radio. What it does is broadcast to an FM channel. Its a lot more powerful and reliable than one of those little fm transmitters that mount onto ipods. You can get one for around 20-30 dollars and expect to pay under 50 dollars for installation.
posted by damn dirty ape at 2:10 PM on November 14, 2008

I thought about an FM transmitter but the GSM static from the 1st Gen iPhone would seem to kill that idea.

I use inline FM for my XM radio and have yet to hear a cell phone interrupt it. I think this only happens with regular fm transmitters.
posted by damn dirty ape at 2:13 PM on November 14, 2008

Decks with line-level inputs are dime-a-dozen these days. Heck, you can get decks that can take SD cards full of MP3s (also with line-level input, on the front of the unit) for peanuts. If you've got more than peanuts to spend... Crutchfield.
posted by Civil_Disobedient at 2:47 PM on November 14, 2008

I would DICE it.
posted by luckypozzo at 4:31 PM on November 14, 2008

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