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Topic # 104838 21-Jun-2012 17:00 Send private message

I'm looking for a car holder / cradle to work with an iPhone 4(or 4s) - has anyone got any suggestions to narrow down the list from the thousands that seem to be out there?

Main criteria are:

1) Must work with otterbox or similar type case fitted

2) Must be able to charge phone when inserted directly, without having to separately plug in the dock connector - so either has a built in dock adaptor to connect separate charger, or something similar. Basically it's got to be idiot proof, so once it's installed in the car, all the user has to do is stick the phone in the cradle, not plug in any extra bits.

3) Would be nice if it could rotate and hold phone horizontal - but certainly not a critical feature

4) Would be nice if capable of being used with FM transmitter for use with stereo with no aux inputs - again, not a deal breaker if it can't.

5) Not really fussed what the mounting system is (i.e. suction cup / screws etc.).


Don't really want a $250 all singing and dancing model, but want something better than $10 TradeMe junk.

Thanks in advance for any suggestions!

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Just A Geek
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  Reply # 644374 21-Jun-2012 17:03 Send private message

Anything wrong with the tomtom iPhone dock? Its pretty snug and may not work with some cases.

I have one and works really well. About $200 NZ I think.



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  Reply # 644378 21-Jun-2012 17:12 Send private message

Thanks - hadn't considered that one!

Haven't got super thick cases, but they are the two part ones with a rubber liner with a hard thin shell over the top.

Hmmm - getting a page not found error on their web site for that product - is it still available?

Just A Geek
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  Reply # 644386 21-Jun-2012 17:31 Send private message

Err. maybe not still available.

Also to note there is a difference between the Old Tomtom iPhone kits and the New ones due to the sizing of the 3/3G/3GS and the 4/4S. but a 3G one will work .. you just need a very simple mod on them)

Unlike many other car kits when connected will use bluetooth for talking which is better quality than the iPhone built in speaker and it has a much better GPS inbuilt which is better than the iPhone's one.



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Master Geek


  Reply # 644411 21-Jun-2012 18:47 Send private message

The TomTom car kit cannot be used with a case or bumper so rules out your otterbox etc.
Great bit of kit but you need a 2000mA charger to power or your phone will hardly charge. You also have to use the TomTom apps to get the use of the extra GPS abilities. And it costs $99 for the app.
There are very few mounts that have a dock you can use with a case on. Most have a connecting cable. I have a lifeproof and it makes almost all car kits useless.
Bought bluetooth car stereos so I only have to have it on me to get the use of it while driving etc.



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  Reply # 644418 21-Jun-2012 19:00 Send private message

Already bought the Tom Tom app, so that's not a problem - but obviously, it's best to be able to see the thing, rather than just listen to the directions...

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  Reply # 652207 7-Jul-2012 11:05 Send private message

I bought the 3G model of the Griffin Roadtrip and after upgraded to iPhone 4 was able to use it with a Speck case. Only recently started failing so not a bad lifespan for a device used daily. 

The model on this page is the successor to the one I had and has a case in one of the pics so appears to work with it
http://store.griffintechnology.com/roadtrip





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  Reply # 652479 8-Jul-2012 12:06 Send private message

Thanks for that - I'd been a bit cautious with the bendy goose neck thing - you obviously didn't have any problems though?

www.hinve.st
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  Reply # 652537 8-Jul-2012 16:07 Send private message

This NKMOS Ultima looks AWESOME in my opinion. Does not have any charging or FM transmitter, but looks to be bulletproof, and is universal for any phone. Supports landscape and portrait use.
Price is admittedly high, but I think it would be a high quality product.

Cheers,
Joseph

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  Reply # 652654 8-Jul-2012 21:51 Send private message

RunningMan: Thanks for that - I'd been a bit cautious with the bendy goose neck thing - you obviously didn't have any problems though?


Correct. the gooseneck is/was quite firm. My cigarette lighter is at the bottom of the middle panel, so the gooseneck didn't need to bend that much.

Having said all this, due to becoming a regular Waze user, and the connections on the Roadtrip becoming loose/faulty, I now use a "Kensington Quick Release Car Mount." It comes with clip ons for air vents as well as a gooseneck. I really wanted it for the vent clip ons (which many reviewers rated highly) but it doesn't play well with the angle of the ones in our car. The gooseneck is pretty good. It does "waver" slightly, but really not that bad. Either way, clip-ons or gooseneck, the phone is held in really tightly and the quick release works excellently, both putting in and releasing the phone.

If you are interested in buying the Kensington Quick Release Car Mount, it's about $15 cheaper through Ascent than the Apple store.

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  Reply # 653409 10-Jul-2012 10:57 Send private message

If the budget permits, you'd have far more range of options if you upgraded your car stereo to one with bluetooth A2DP and a USB socket on the front. That way you can stream your music over Bluetooth (which is better quality than FM and will allow you to control your iPhone via Siri over Bluetooth also) and charge it via the USB socket if and when you need to. That way, you don't have to limit your choice of holders to ones that both charge and have FM senders built-in.



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  Reply # 653436 10-Jul-2012 11:25 Send private message

steve98: If the budget permits, you'd have far more range of options if you upgraded your car stereo to one with bluetooth A2DP and a USB socket on the front. That way you can stream your music over Bluetooth (which is better quality than FM and will allow you to control your iPhone via Siri over Bluetooth also) and charge it via the USB socket if and when you need to. That way, you don't have to limit your choice of holders to ones that both charge and have FM senders built-in.


Unfortunately, company car, so that's a no go.

Having said that, a friend picked up a Panasonic stereo with iPod/iPhone integration for $119 from JB Hi Fi a couple of days ago....

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  Reply # 653526 10-Jul-2012 14:18 Send private message

steve98: If the budget permits, you'd have far more range of options if you upgraded your car stereo to one with bluetooth A2DP and a USB socket on the front. That way you can stream your music over Bluetooth (which is better quality than FM and will allow you to control your iPhone via Siri over Bluetooth also) and charge it via the USB socket if and when you need to. That way, you don't have to limit your choice of holders to ones that both charge and have FM senders built-in.


Having looked at the available options, I agree that a car stereo with bluetooth is the best way to go. I did also look into getting a 3.5mm --> Bluetooth adapter but most of the reviewers found that the rechargeable battery only lasts a few hours and that needs to be powered on/off each time.

A good review of FM transmitters:
http://www.techradar.com/news/audio/portable-audio/best-fm-transmitter-for-iphone-ipod-5-on-test-1035323

Once used the bluetooth pairing in a rented car and it was just brilliant. Have yet though to see a car stereo with Bluetooth for under $300

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  Reply # 653583 10-Jul-2012 15:28 Send private message

I have a Magellan iPhone car kit.

http://www.magellangps.com/Products/iPhone-Products/Magellan-Premium-Car-Kit-for-iPhone

It works fine with my 3GS in a Contour Flick case with plenty of space to spare, and the top retaining clip is height adjustable so larger cases shouldn't be an issue.

It's got a GPS receiver and bluetooth speakerphone built in, however I haven't had a need to use this functionality.

The only problem I've had is occasionally the phone will display the 'This accessory is not supported' message, however it still holds the phone securely and charges it up which is all I need.

Mine came from EBay, so I'm not sure if they are available locally or not.

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  Reply # 653586 10-Jul-2012 15:30 Send private message

I bought a JVC KD-R526 with KS-BTA100 bluetooth module last year for $279. The module is hardwired to the back of the unit and is mounted next to the steering wheel. As soon as I start the engine, the module pairs with my bluetooth, and pressing the call button initiates Siri (or Voice Control on a 3GS / 4). It also has skip back / forward and pause buttons on it which all work with the iPhone. No matter what source you're currently listening to, it will switch to the iPhone when your phone rings or when you initiate Siri, streaming quality is superb and voice quality in calls amazing. If you can still find it anywhere (not sure if its still a current model), I would highly recommend this combo.

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  Reply # 654210 11-Jul-2012 21:43 Send private message

steve98: I bought a JVC KD-R526 with KS-BTA100 bluetooth module last year for $279. The module is hardwired to the back of the unit and is mounted next to the steering wheel. As soon as I start the engine, the module pairs with my bluetooth, and pressing the call button initiates Siri (or Voice Control on a 3GS / 4). It also has skip back / forward and pause buttons on it which all work with the iPhone. No matter what source you're currently listening to, it will switch to the iPhone when your phone rings or when you initiate Siri, streaming quality is superb and voice quality in calls amazing. If you can still find it anywhere (not sure if its still a current model), I would highly recommend this combo.


That's really cool. Wasn't even aware of these. The unit+KS-BTA100 are available at around the $250 mark. Going to be a hard sell to the wife though, seeing as besides the annoyance of the FM transmitter, current car stereo does a fine job!

Will keep an eye out though....

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