Looking for Car Stereo
April 25, 2005 1:49 PM   Subscribe

Any recommendations for car stereos with an "audio in" 3.5mm mini jack for my iPod? .....The iTrip just sucks in the LA area and listen to podcasts during my commute...
posted by stevyb to Technology (7 answers total)
Best answer: A variation of this was discussed before. That was more about adapting an existing car stereo, but there might be something useful there.
posted by MrMoonPie at 2:01 PM on April 25, 2005

I got a 3.5" jack to cassette adaptor from Fry's. Originally designed for plugging portable CD players into car stereos but works fine with iPod, laptops & the like.
posted by i_cola at 2:39 PM on April 25, 2005

I have the AIWA CDC series like here with the front panel aux in. Does what I needed it to do at $100, an even provided a little boost. I still have to have the Monster charger to keep the iPod juiced though. So all in all I spent like $200 to let me play my iPod in my car without resorting to shitty radio reception.
posted by Stan Chin at 2:59 PM on April 25, 2005

I just bought a Honda Element which has such a jack built in to the dashboard, and has the nicest stock sound system Honda has ever shipped, I'm told. However, If you don't want to buy a whole car just to use it with your iPod like I did, you might try a cassette type adapter if your stereo plays cassettes. I was a pretty happy camper in my good ol' Civic using this method.
posted by Scoo at 7:59 PM on April 25, 2005

I have adaptors to run my mp3 player on any sound system (regardless of whether they have jacks :-), and i_cola's suggestion of simplyusing a tape adaptor is a good one. I found the sound was unexpectedly decent with one of those. Since you'll never use casette tapes, just leave the adaptor in there permanently and for a few bucks you've added the input jack you wanted to a standard car stereo without having to search out an obscure one.
posted by -harlequin- at 2:57 AM on April 26, 2005

Avoid the FM transmitters though. They all use the same one-chip-solution IC (or varients of it) which uses a bit of a trick to encode stereo, and it just sounds bad.
posted by -harlequin- at 3:00 AM on April 26, 2005

I've installed several Aiwa decks for this exact purpose, and they work great. Sound snobs would probably not like them as much, but they're very reasonably priced and sound good to me.

I think that most of the Aiwas available online (crutchfield.com) or at big box retailers (Best Buy, Circuit City, etc) have the mini jack input on the front. It seems like the other brands would follow suit - there are a LOT of iPods out there.
posted by sluggo at 7:18 AM on April 26, 2005

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