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Topic # 157455 2-Dec-2014 09:40
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We have a Japanese import Honda Accord Euro which has an integrated stereo/ air conditioning/ satnav touch screen computer. Unfortunately there is no external input apart from some proprietary connection in the central console, and the 6 disc CD changer cannot read MP3 CDs. We haven't got a band expander on the radio either.

We stopped buying CDs years ago and have gone digital/ streaming so having to burn an album to CD to listen in the car is time consuming and painful.

From what I've read trying to put in an after market head unit is complicated, expensive insanity which is bound to go horribly wrong.

So I'm trying to work out the simplest solution to:

 

     

  1. Play music from USB sticks or SD cards.
  2. Optionally take music from an Android for Spotify etc.

 

There's a cigarette lighter at the base of the dashboard and it crossed my mind that a good FM transmitter than runs on Japanese radio frequencies (76–90 MHz) could be all we need.

However there are eleventy bazillion FM transmitters out there and at a guess most of them are complete and utter garbage.

What would people recommend for a FM transmitter that runs on the Japanese radio frequencies and is good quality/ easy to use?

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  Reply # 1186903 2-Dec-2014 11:16
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Griffin iTrip.

https://shop.jbhifi.co.nz/ipod-mp3-portables/accessories/griffin-itrip-auto-universal-plus-fm-transmitter/65300




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  Reply # 1186914 2-Dec-2014 11:26
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My answer is that there isn't such a product that will work well.

Maybe if you could find a Japanese FM modulator that'll work with their band you'll be OK, but the link above (and every other modulator I've seen in NZ) only supports the 88-108 FM band. The small number of channels you'll get below 90Mhz will make this pretty much unusable.

FM modulators as a whole are pretty much completely useless these days, they're cheap junky electronics and can't cope with the number of crowded broadcast band.


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  Reply # 1186915 2-Dec-2014 11:30
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Why not just replace the radio with one that will do what you want?

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  Reply # 1186917 2-Dec-2014 11:31
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B1GGLZ: Why not just replace the radio with one that will do what you want?


Because as per the original post, it's expensive and complicated and not worth the trouble?





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  Reply # 1186923 2-Dec-2014 11:39
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We have a Mazda Premacy that is the same situation.  The  Factory stereo is inside a custom mold and integrated into other systems so to replace it is :

1)a big job - and may require making new panels for the dash area and 
2) means losing Steering wheel controls AND Climate control displays

So no.

Even trying to add a band expander to it is a big job...

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  Reply # 1186930 2-Dec-2014 11:45
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There was a lot of crap below 88mhz when I last had access to a spectrum analyser which is why band expanders work so poorly.

Is there an ax in adapter available for the cd changer input at all?




Richard rich.ms

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  Reply # 1186934 2-Dec-2014 11:48
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You can buy a pocket that goes under the existing unit to install a 3rd party head unit. You end up keeping the old stereo in place from AC control and just remove or move the DVD drive that usually sits below the stereo. 

http://www.edsauto.co.nz/images/PDF_Catalogue/Honda.pdf




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  Reply # 1187155 2-Dec-2014 15:15
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Thank you for the feedback everyone.

Handsomedan: Griffin iTrip.

https://shop.jbhifi.co.nz/ipod-mp3-portables/accessories/griffin-itrip-auto-universal-plus-fm-transmitter/65300 


This is looking like the easiest option without doing surgery on the dashboard. 

Here's a photo of the dashboard to give an idea of how complex it is: https://cdn.geekzone.co.nz/imagessubs/4eec980d5c5d66ae4bcf0e986ee68b35.jpg

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  Reply # 1187165 2-Dec-2014 15:21
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Yip, which is why they make the unit to just replace the pocket below with a stereo.

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  Reply # 1187185 2-Dec-2014 15:41
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BaronGrivet: Thank you for the feedback everyone.

Handsomedan: Griffin iTrip.

https://shop.jbhifi.co.nz/ipod-mp3-portables/accessories/griffin-itrip-auto-universal-plus-fm-transmitter/65300 


This is looking like the easiest option without doing surgery on the dashboard. 



It's the easiest option but it's the worst. If you read my post above you'll see why. You pay as well give me your $88 because you'll just be wasting it.





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  Reply # 1187189 2-Dec-2014 15:55
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The name brand ones are legal so weak output to fit within the general user license that says how much power you can radiate on the fm band.

Ebay and dx ones are made by sellers who don't care about that. They are cheaper and will go further and overpower the high noise floor in the fm band. One I have will even take out a high power fm station for about 6 meters or so. Much better than name brand ones.




Richard rich.ms



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  Reply # 1187192 2-Dec-2014 16:05
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OK - points taken about the crappiness of FM transmitters.

This is looking like an option: http://www.anycarlink.com/Honda.asp - it allows MP3 etc. control through the factory stereo. This would mean I could still control the stereo via the steering wheel controls (which I use a lot).



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  Reply # 1187219 2-Dec-2014 16:35
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richms:
Is there an ax in adapter available for the cd changer input at all?


This would get my vote - see if you can get something that plugs in place of the CD changer to give an aux input instead.

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  Reply # 1187232 2-Dec-2014 16:55
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BaronGrivet: OK - points taken about the crappiness of FM transmitters.



Most (but not all) are crap. Your biggest problem is that you only have 2Mhz of usable spectrum to find a usable channel since you have a Japanese radio and want to use a NZ band expander.



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  Reply # 1187259 2-Dec-2014 17:39
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Whatever you do don't buy the Dick Smith one. It's controls are poor, signal strength is poor, it works but just barely. Rubbish.




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