How To Have A Pod-y In Your Car

You have an iPod (or Lil' Monsta, etc.), congratulations! You have a car, congratulations again! You aren't using them together?!?! Ahhhhh!!!! Say it ain't so. If you are like me and you have either a cassette or CD player in your car, you can definitely get that iPod music playing in your car in no time. Here are some options:
  1. Buy a cassette adapter: great quality and very easy to do - $15.
  2. Buy an FM transmitter: good quality and pretty easy - $40.
  3. Buy a new CD player with mp3 input: great quality but - $150.
  4. Buy connector cables for your CD player: great quality - $12.

The first three are pretty much buy and plug in. However, if you are adventurous and want to try the fourth option (like me!) I would definitely recommend it. You can get great audio for little cost and have a little fun, if a little engineering is your thing.

First, you have to check and see what your CD player looks like on the back. I did this online first. Google your player's make and model number and find its installation guide/instructions manual online if you can. Look through the document and find some diagrams of the back of your CD player. If you see some RCA cable hook-ups saying Input, Line-In or anything of that sort, chances are it's worth a shot. That's what I found on my CD player and my friend Jonathan's CD player and both worked just fine.

Next, it's time to pull the CD player out of your car and actually inspect the back yourself. Read the directions on how to remove your CD player and then find the appropriate RCA plug-ins once its out. Generally these plug-ins have a red or white trim around them, to correspond to the red and white RCA plugs that go into them. If you find two plugs you will probably just need one RCA cable. If you have four plugs you will probably need two adapters as well as one RCA cable, this was the case with my car.

Next, decide how long of cables you want based on where you want the cables to run to. In my car, I ran the cables out the back of my CD player, down the middle of my car under the shifting column and then up inside my console between the driver and passenger seat. This required that I remove two screws and lift a little bit of the dash, everything else let the cable slip under it very easily. An eight foot cable was a perfect for this. To plan out the path of your cable, look for holes that are already in your vehicle, whether it's under removable items in your console or on the dash itself. You'll probably be surprised at the possibilities. Once you have a general idea, go on to Radioshack, Target, or another electronics store and get the cables you need. In my case I got one white Stereo Jack to RCA cable and two adapters. In Jonathan's case he just got one black Stereo Jack to RCA cable.

Once you've returned triumphant, plug your RCA cables into the CD player and the headphone jack into your iPod. Then turn on the car, turn on the CD player, turn up the Volume to 1 on the CD player and then start playing a song on your iPod. You should hear the music through your car speakers. You are all set. Just run the wires through your car how you want them and then enjoy. From here on out your car and your iPod (or Lil' Monsta) are best friends and everything should be gravy. If you have any questions, let me know. Otherwise, enjoy!