Weekend project: iPod your carThere are more ways than ever to take your iTunes on the highway. From cheap-and-cheerful FM transmitters and line-in cables to an increasing number of "made-for-iPod" aftermarket stereos, these are some of the best ways to stream your iPod through your...
[ music ] ^M00:00:07 >> So, you've got hundreds of songs on your iPod and you've got a CD player in your car that plays 12 songs at a time. That's not an ideal situation. Hey there, I'm Kevin Massey from CNET Car Tech and today I'm gonna show you how to connect your iPod to your car. Now for this process, you'll need two essential components. And iPod and a car. Now we're gonna use the CNET yellow, Chevy Aveo for this demonstration. We're gonna show you a range of ways to take your iPod library with you on the road. Okay, while I seen that Chevy Aveo may look hot from the outside, there's not a lot of tech on the inside. It comes with this factory installed stereo which really is probably the least sophisticated stereo we've seen. You can still connect your iPod to a stereo like this, using an FM Transmitter. Now there are a number of these on the market and probably the most popular is the Griffin iTrip. This is a device that allows you to plug in your iPod and transmit your iPod tracks via FM to your car stereo. It tells that we have to tune to 87.9 FM and we're streaming our iPod tunes through our car stereo using an FM connection. Now there are a number of other devices that allow you to use the same technology. The Belkin Tune Base is a popular device. This comes with a cigarette adapter to connect into your car's 12 volt power supply. The final one we have here is the DLT Nano Tube and as you can see, this one has a rather snazzy protective case that allows you to put your iPod away. The downside of FM streaming of iPod tunes is that the sound quality is sketchy at times, it's liable to interference as it is a radio signal. As well as FM transmitters, there are another couple of low tech ways of connecting your iPod to your factory car stereo. If you have a car stereo that still has a cassette deck in it, well shame on you, but there are cassette adapters which allow you to plug in a cassette reader into your car stereo and play your iPod that way. There are also generic line in cables or patch cables that plug into your iPod and that allows you a low tech kind of unintelligent connection between your iPod and the stereo. You still have to use the iPod player itself to make song selections. Next up we're gonna show you how to take out your factory installed car stereo and replace it with an after market car stereo, specifically designed with iPod users in mind. Before you take your car stereo out, we need to go under the hood to disconnect the battery. Now it's best to disconnect the battery before you start playing around with the stereo for two reasons. First you don't want to get electrocuted and secondly, I can tell you from experience, that if you don't disconnect the battery, you're gonna spend a fortune in blown fuses. We're just gonna take the negative terminal off. With the battery disconnected, it's time to get our hands dirty and start taking our car's dashboard to pieces. Next you wanna unscrew the car stereo from the dashboard itself. Pull the car stereo out and you'll see that it's connected in the rear to a cable harness and an FM connection. Pull those both out and throw this in the trash. The next thing you'll need to do is connect your new car stereos wiring harness to the wiring harness to connect specifically to your car model. Connect the FM cable and any other bus cables. With all that done, slot the stereo into the dash, screw it in, reconnect the panels and you'll be ready to start playing your iPod through your car stereo. With the installation complete, it's time to start playing the iPod through the car stereo itself. Now there are two kinds of iPod compatible car stereos. There are stereos that have built in iPod connectivity and others like the one we have here. Okay, let's have a look at this. We have a module that connects to the back of the car stereo and can be affixed or attached anywhere in the car cabin. Often the glove box or the central console are a good place to stick one of these. And whether your stereo has built in iPod connectivity or has an add on module, they'll all terminate in one of these intelligent or full speed iPod cables. Many of these systems will also charge your iPod while you're driving along. With an iPod connected to full speed connection, you don't use the iPod at all. You don't need to mess around with the wheel. You can store it away in the central console or in your glove box because, all control is then transferred to the stereo head unit itself. Now this Jensen stereo that we have connected today is typical of many iPod ready or compatible stereos in that it gives you a version of the iPod menu structure on the stereo display itself. Press this button here and we get a very familiar list of iPod options. We've got playlists, artists, albums and you scroll through them on this specific stereo, using the volume knob. One of the things we like about this system but not so much on others, is the ability to search through long lists of alphabetized tracks. That's one of the key challenges for car stereo manufacturers. Some manufacturers make car stereos specifically for iPods. An example of this is the Alpine IDA X001 which was designed by Alpine with help from Apple. If you wanna get even more sophisticated, the Harmon Card and Drive and Play 2, is a device that you can route through your car stereo and it gives you a bigger screen with again, a virtual version of the iPod wheel. So as you can see there are lots of options for playing your iPod on the road. Whether it's an FM transmitter, an auxiliary input jack, a full speed or intelligent iPod cable or one of these new, sophisticated devices made specifically with the iPod in mind. I'm Kevin Massey and I hope you've enjoyed our weekend project guide on how to iPod your car. ^M00:06:22 [ music ]