Griffin iTrip reviews?

Discussion in 'Buying Tips, Advice and Discussion (archive)' started by echeck, Aug 28, 2004.

  1. echeck macrumors 68000

    echeck

    Joined:
    Apr 20, 2004
    Location:
    Boise, Idaho
    #1
    Okay, I know there are tons ... of ... iTrip ... threads ...but I couldn't really find any actual user reviews.

    I just got a new 4G 20g iPod and I'm like a kid in a candy store with all of these accessories! My first accessory that I want is a way to use my iPod with my car stereo. I have an older (about six years older) Sony cd player in my car, so the tape adapter is out, and I don't believe there's an auxillary input on my deck, though I haven't actually checked, I just don't remember having one.

    I think my only option is an FM transmitter and I figured the iTrip was the way to go until I began reading the user reviews on Amazon.

    So I decided to tap the endless resource that is MacRumors! I'm looking for any first or second-hand review of an FM transmitter.

    Oh, and if anyone has any other suggestions please feel free to shoot them at me!

    Thanks! :D
     
  2. Sven071 macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Aug 4, 2004
    Location:
    Maryland
    #2
    I got my itrip about a week ago, and i love it. But the trick is to find a station that has nothing but static on it , and no channels on ether side. The sound is pretty good , but its not cd quality, but it is good enough for me. I hardly use the earphones any more cause i just turn on my sterio and go to town. I would say go ahead and get it, but dont expect the audio quality to be flawless. If you are looking for something ultra hi speed, and have the money, looking to getting the ipod interface that alpine is comming out with. But if that option is to much, go ahead and get a aux input.

    Sven
     
  3. Mastersonics macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Aug 28, 2004
    #3
    hey Sven

    do you have a link or a picture of the Alpine?

    let me know
    thanks,
    CJ
     
  4. Sven071 macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Aug 4, 2004
    Location:
    Maryland
    #4
    Sure, goto www.alpine1.com
    The interface plugs into the cd changer controls, and you can operate your ipod through the head unit. It looks pretty neet, from what i have read, it operates just like the bmw interface. But ya check it out, im def going to get one when they are out, so far the web site just says it will be out in september, and it will work with any alpine ai-net head unit, tape or cd player.
     
  5. jimsowden macrumors 68000

    jimsowden

    Joined:
    Sep 6, 2003
    Location:
    NY
  6. echeck thread starter macrumors 68000

    echeck

    Joined:
    Apr 20, 2004
    Location:
    Boise, Idaho
    #6
    That does look pretty sweet, but will it work with head units other than Alpine?

    Of course the target retail price is $100, a little out of my price range. :(
     
  7. Sven071 macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Aug 4, 2004
    Location:
    Maryland
    #7
    I dont think it will, its only for alpines........................ something that will work is a aux input. You could check it out, to to google , i was thinking of getting one before i got my itrip but i couldn't justify the price since i want to get the alpine interface. But i was looking at aux inputs for my car, and they avraged 60-90 bucks. Once you get one all you would need is a 1/8" to rca adapter, then plug it in to the aux input , and you have cd quality sound. I vaguely remember seeing a aux input for a sony, but before you go that route , be sure to check to see if your head unit already has a aux input.
     
  8. echeck thread starter macrumors 68000

    echeck

    Joined:
    Apr 20, 2004
    Location:
    Boise, Idaho
    #9
    Yeah, I think that would work, but I don't think I'm willing to pay 100 bucks for it, even if it would be really cool. The USB option is really cool.

    I've spent the last hour or so digging around for info on my deck (Sony CDX-C780) and haven't really come up with much. I think an FM transmitter is my only option.

    Oh well...
     
  9. jcook793 macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Aug 18, 2003
    Location:
    Cincinnati, OH
    #10
    I have an iTrip. While it is usable, I found it annoying to use on a trip. For a while it would be OK, but then a radio station starts leaking over your signal and you have to change.

    It's not really a fault of the iTrip. As far as FM transmitters go, it's a great one. It's just that FM transmitters kind of suck.

    With my old Jeep I bought a radio that had an auxillary line input and that worked great. But I sold that Jeep, and I'm thinking about getting a new radio just for that feature.
     
  10. alexstein macrumors 6502a

    alexstein

    Joined:
    Aug 23, 2004
    #11
    The iTrip is a good value for the money. It works almost everywhere and with every radio. If you use it on long trips make sure you have a car charger the iTrip likes to eat the battery up in no time.
    If you really care about good sound the iTrip will not satisfy you it's a little worse than regular FM Radio.

    Your radio is compatible with a cd changer there many companys out there that make connectors so you can plug your iPod into that interface. I have my iPod hardwired into the car with a DENSION ICELINK interface. It looks very clean and the best part is it has a craddle were the iPod sits in. The music output is from the dock connector (better than the mini jack) and it also charges the iPod constantly(also through the dock connector)

    It is a little bit more expensive to do the later but it's definetly worth it IMHO.


    The Alpine interface I think works only with 2004 model alpine headunits.
     
  11. echeck thread starter macrumors 68000

    echeck

    Joined:
    Apr 20, 2004
    Location:
    Boise, Idaho
    #12
    First off, thanks for all the advice everyone! :D

    A hardwire interface sounds much better than an FM transmitter so I think I want to pursue that.

    So, here's my next question. It's been about six years since I've payed any attention to car stereos so I honestly have no idea where to begin to look for a CD changer adapter to hook up my iPod. What companies make these adapters?

    Thanks again for all the help! :D
     
  12. alexstein macrumors 6502a

    alexstein

    Joined:
    Aug 23, 2004
    #13
  13. crachoar macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Mar 22, 2004
    Location:
    Ohio
    #14
    I can't say I read any of the other reviews...I was too excited to post here, hoping it wasn't too late....

    I went to the Apple Store thinking, "damn...new car without a tape deck...need iTrip...must be good...costs $40.."

    I asked the employee if the Belkin FM thing was any good and he said, "It's ok, but it takes and eats up batteries". So he said the iTrip was best. Another customer there also agreed and sold me on it. I even asked, "but doesn't it broadcast at an extremely low quality frequency?". "Nope, it sounds great!" So then I asked, "But how is the range? Can it just be anywhere in my car and it'll still sound great? No drop-outs during songs and such?" Apple guy and random guy both say, "Yep. It's good for like 12 ft. It's a great product!"

    I guess this is where studying radio frequencies saves you $40...

    To sum it up...the iTrip sucks terrible balls. It is quite possibly the worst product I have ever owned. I have to hold it in the air for it to transmit. The sound quality is terrible. If you thought 128kbps CBR sounded bad? Wow....get ready for a world of audio pain. You like bass? Too bad. No bass here buddy.

    I made the offer to some friends, "I'll sell you my iTrip for free." And I would.

    If you're into audio quality at all, don't waste your time. Buy a pack of CD-Rs instead or get a new CD player with audio-in.
     
  14. echeck thread starter macrumors 68000

    echeck

    Joined:
    Apr 20, 2004
    Location:
    Boise, Idaho
    #15
    ha ha ha!

    Yeah, that definately seems to be the general consensus. I'm glad my wife didn't let me run out and buy it when I got my iPod. :eek:

    I don't think I'll be getting the iTrip, or any other FM transmitter. I'm going to focus on trying to find a way to use my CD changer controls to get an audio line in. I'm sure I'll be able to do it, just don't know how! ;)

    Thanks for your post, crachoar....wow, that sounds like an insult when I say it back to myself.


    EDIT: Thanks for the link, alexstein!
     
  15. redAPPLE macrumors 68030

    redAPPLE

    Joined:
    May 7, 2002
    Location:
    2 Much Infinite Loops
    #16
    try iCarPlay.

    it recharges your iPod, too. to get better sound, lower or better yet, remove your external car antenna.

    to listen to traffic, weather or news, the car would still catch enough waves to understand it.
     
  16. kylos macrumors 6502a

    kylos

    Joined:
    Nov 8, 2002
    Location:
    MI
    #17
    Actually, the iTrip is not a bad product, especially if you'll be using it in Idaho. It generally works fine, but it is FM transmission, so it obviously won't be as high quality as a more permanent solution and will be subject to variables often beyond your control, though they cost substantially more. iTrip works fine for the most part, it really depends on what sacrifices you're willing to make - price/quality vs efficiency.

    If you do get an iTrip, make sure it works in your car; it is truly amazing the difference between two cars or radios. I have heard that some cars have some sort of coating on the windows that retard electromagnetic signals, so that might be a lot of the problem some people are experiencing.

    The cheapest solution, tape adapter, actually sounds quite good. The only problem is that even if your car does have a tape deck, many don't work well with adapters. But when they do, they sound very respectable.
     
  17. Liffer macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Apr 15, 2004
    Location:
    Chicagoland
    #18
    Itrip

    I had the same reation as others posted here that the Itrip was garbage. That was untill I also bought a charger adapter for my Ipod. When you use the cigarette lighter adapter with an Itrip, it actually works quite well. Sound Quality was better. Reception improved. I live in a crowded market and have made long trips using it and did not have problems with channeles bleeding over it. Yes I know that it was an additional thing to buy, and I know that monster has a combo one, but if you already have an Itrip and dont want to shell out $50-$100+ bucks for an alternative, a cheep (Uder $20) adapter will do the trick.
     
  18. scottwat macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Oct 9, 2003
    Location:
    Ohio USA
    #19
    Somewhat of a review

    I have been using a 10gig gen 1 ipod and a classic version iTrip for about a year or so now. I don't use it alot honestly. I have issues with it draining the battery. If I leave the itrip attached normally I go to use it and the batteries are drained. But this could be more of a battery usage in general problem. Other than that it is a fairly convenient way to "attach" the ipod to a stereo.
    I normally keep mine set at the standard 87.9 which arround my area is fine, I even have the station programmed into my head unit. Also it is nice if we take my girlfriends car or someone else's car, they wouldn't have an alpine link or bmw link or even an aux input on the head unit. BTW my truck does use the standard factory head unit so a front aux input isn't an option in my case, I also don't have a tape player so that was out. As far as sound quality, I would put it on par with the radio. It isn't perfect, I get some static in the input, but I'm also now able to listen to 10 gigs worth of music.
    Something annoying: When you load the software it puts i dont know how many sound files in your library. If you are used to playing your whole library you might, and I did this a number of times, end up reprogramming the itrip over and over. You have to be alittle more organized and use good playlisting and all that.
    Looks: it fits in pretty well with the ipod. It was made for the ipod. I don't think having some dangling thing like the irock or whatever would look right. But on the other hand if you get a standard fm transmitter not powered off the ipod, you could hook up a PB or iB and watch a movie through the car speakers or any other source.
    I would consider an fm transmitter to be an essential part of the ipod experience.
     
  19. windowsblowsass macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Jan 25, 2004
    Location:
    pa
    #20
    i have abelkin tunecast2 witch i bought the other day im throughly impressed t gets a good signal and doesnt use up its batteries quickly i got it for 30 bucks from walmart.com actually a circuitcity price match of walmart.com
     
  20. crachoar macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Mar 22, 2004
    Location:
    Ohio
    #21
    I also have the car charger, and it does nothing. Nothing!

    You lie!!!!

    Basically, if you don't believe me, I will send you my iTrip for free. If that saves you from wasting $40 like I did, I'll feel like I've done my good deed for the day. Just pay for shipping...

    It's not a terrible product in terms of packaging. The box is pretty sweet. However, you know what they say...."can't polish a turd"...you know, because it's poo...

    ....the iTrip stinks.
     
  21. Miner Willy macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Apr 30, 2004
    Location:
    Bradford, UK
    #22
    itrip review

    I have an iTrip and I think it's pretty sweet. Yeah it's not CD quality but can you really hear cd quality sound over your engines noise!!! It does what it says for me. I have a Toyota Yaris (yeah, it sucks i know) and the reception is fine, it just depends where the strongest signal is on your fm dial (or should that be the weakest, so that you can tune the itrip into that one with the least amount of interference from other radio stations.)

    To all those people out there who say the iTrip is crap, have you thought it may be your car stereos that are rubbish, or possibly the aerial on your car. Have you ever read the instructions on the iTrip box.

    Yeah it is a bit of a pain in the ass to find a sweet station, but I can pretty much roam between Leeds and London (I live in the uk) without hardly any interference or switching stations. I'd buy another one if it broke
     
  22. dejaentendu macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Aug 4, 2004
    Location:
    Roseville, CA/Santa Barbara, CA
    #23
    I bought an iTrip about a month ago and while it was nice for a couple of weeks, the novelty wore off and I got sick of the bad quality pretty quickly. If I really want to listen to my music in the car, I just burn a quick CD in iTunes on a CD-RW that I can later modify. When I'm at home and would rather listen to my iPod through speakers, I use one of those auxilary cables to attach it to my cheapo, $30-on-clearance stereo. It sounds great when I do that.

    But maybe I need to play around with the stations a bit more before I just forget about iTrip completely. Where I stand right now, I wish I hadn't paid $40 for it.
     
  23. crachoar macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Mar 22, 2004
    Location:
    Ohio
    #24
    No. Wrong. Liar.

    The iTrip is terrible. My stereo is fine. Or, maybe you're right. Maybe my stereo "detects" that I'm using an iPod instead of CDs, so it makes it sound bad. Yeah, that's the ticket. That would explain why my iPod sounds like trash with the FM transmitter, and CDs sound awesome. It's probably some sort of "M$ Conspiracy" to get iPods out of cars. But wait? Then why would it sound so nice with my tape adapter in my old car?! *sarcasm sarcasm*

    "Playing around with the stations" is about as productive as sticking your thumb up your ass. The product sucks, it's over-hyped, the quality = balls. If you're content with hissy sounding, mid-range (no highs, no lows), dropouts and mono 56kbps mp3 filles, then yes, the iTrip is sweet and the quality is unsurpassed.

    And the "engine noise" thing? I don't even know how to answer that one...

    I've read the manual many times. Mostly because I didn't think it was possible for a $40 product to suck so much. I even read about modding it on the net, to get an increase in signal strength, hoping that it would save the product from it's lackluster 3ft. broadcasting radius...

    iTrip stinks. Don't believe me? I'll send you mine. That's my guarantee.
     
  24. echeck thread starter macrumors 68000

    echeck

    Joined:
    Apr 20, 2004
    Location:
    Boise, Idaho
    #25
    Your guarantee, eh? ;)
     

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