FM transmitters

Discussion in 'iPhone Accessories' started by lindsayanng, May 13, 2008.

  1. lindsayanng macrumors 68000


    May 4, 2008
    East Haven, CT
    Hey there, i just got mine and my husbands iphones this past week and i have some questions about FM transmitters. WHY doesnt the ipod transmitter work for them?

    I understand that the 10V old ipod chargers are bad to use for your iphone because they run on 5V, but what would that have to do with the itrip and others like it? I'm pretty sure the power draw on a small thing like an fm transmitter is not a lot, and the iphone SHOULD be able to handle it. So WHY does it tell me it should not be plugged in when i put my ipod's fm transmitter on it?

    and secondly, what are some decent brands of FM transmitters?? Can you still get a phone call when using it? DOes the ringer come through your car speakers????
  2. maxxscholten macrumors regular

    Feb 28, 2008
    I'm using a Belkin TuneBase FM Transmitter (meant for iPod).

    I really enjoy it in my 2003 Honda Civic Coup... it plugs into the cigarette lighter area and has a dock so it shows me the nice large album art and charges it. It has some technology called "clear scan" where it supposed to find and set it to the next "clearest" station... sometimes, this really sucks though... sometimes it takes me to a station that is being broadcasted on 100%, but then after a few more tries will find me a good station.

    I use it in downtown Austin, TX where there are a bunch of channels and since it's hilly in parts of the area and in the middle of a city, sometimes finding a clear station can be hard, but you usually find one that's good and make it a preset.

    I also use it alot in the suburb area of Dallas/Fort Worth, where there is a perfectly clear station.

    I guess it depends on where you live... if you live in the middle of a large city, it might not be the best ever, but then again... no FM transmitter will be. But if you are using it outside of the busyness of the city and live in a suburb area, it might be a lot better.

    Anyway, even thought it was kinda pricey: $100, it is one of the best accessory purchases I've made for my iPhone.
  3. maxxscholten macrumors regular

    Feb 28, 2008
    Also, I forgot to say... yes you get a phone call and it comes through the speakers. If I'm playing music using the Belkin Dock and a call comes in, my music fades out and my ringtone plays through the speakers, just like it would if you had the headphones in.

    However, the voice/conversation will NOT carry through the speakers, you'll either have to put it on speaker, or pull it out of the dock (not that this is inconvenient at all).

    Anyway, it's nice to know I never really miss any calls.
  4. lindsayanng thread starter macrumors 68000


    May 4, 2008
    East Haven, CT
    That sounds like a good idea, but what about the itrip that i already have? Its a new one that i bought for my ipod video, and it works GREAT for that, but when i plug it into my iphone, it says that this device was not made for the iphone, do you want to continue using it. I got scared and took it out. I dont want to mess anything up. However, i can not think of any logical reason that it would not work.

    also, when answering a call, couldn't you just touch answer and then touch speaker? I cant imagine that being too bad.. But are you saying that even the person on the other end;s voice comes through the speakers in your car? Or does it disconnect as soon as you touch accept?
  5. maxxscholten macrumors regular

    Feb 28, 2008
    If it was made for your iPod video and it works fine, I would go ahead and keep using it. That message appears on mine as well every time I plug it in...

    The reason is says that is because there are no "perfect' FM transmitters for iPhones because they use a form of radio waves in order to make/receive phone calls... Thus, every now and then you get some interference which you might have heard before in the form of "beeping." That's why it asks if you want to put it in airplane mode, which would restrict you from making/receiving calls and do away with that periodic interference (personally I just put up with it, it's not bad at all).

    Also, you could just put it on speaker and talk... depends on your transmitter and car though. Since mine is a dock type, it covers the speaker/microphone and is sort of hard to hear the person talk on speaker, especially if I'm on a highway or something. But if you can hear your speaker from the iPhone just fine, and your car doesn't produce much noise from the road, then go ahead and use that too.
  6. gadgetgirl85 macrumors 68040


    Mar 24, 2006
    Sorry to hijack this thread, I actually want to purchase a FM transmitter for my iphone for the car. I don't really want to spend over 100 for it. Any good ones?
  7. Hawkeye411 macrumors 68000


    Jun 6, 2007
    Canada EH!!!
  8. BigMac1 macrumors newbie

    May 20, 2008
    iPod adapters

    Don't waste your time with the FM transmitter. The sound quality is horrible!!!

    I checked around and found a Neo direct connect adapter. It has CD Quality Sound and Charges my iPhone.

    All the FM adapters I found didn't even work for my iPhone. This Neo lets me send and receive calls while listening to my music!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
  9. maxxscholten macrumors regular

    Feb 28, 2008
    I !!!!!!!!! actually get great sound quality from my FM transmitter with almost no interference except for 2 second bursts maybe every couple of days!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    Also, how can you send/receive calls while listening to music? The iPhone software doesn't allow for that, so that just sounds like a lie.
  10. BigMac1 macrumors newbie

    May 20, 2008

    The Neo is defiantly not a lie. I have one myself.

    The music fades in and out when you get a calls. And works great with my iPhone.
  11. maxxscholten macrumors regular

    Feb 28, 2008
    Well duh, that's true with any FM transmitter/headphones/direct input connection, it's not a Neo feature, it's an iPhone feature. If you're playing music it will fade out, take the call, and then fade back in once the call is ended.

    However you cannot listen to music while taking a call like you previously said.
  12. buymeaniphone macrumors 6502


    Feb 8, 2007
    San Antonio, Texas
    I use this FM transmitter from Mobile.Brando. I think it's a generic transmitter from Japan that Mobile.Brando sells as their own model but it works great. It only costs $25 and it comes with a charger so you can charge your iPhone while the transmitter is plugged in. For $25, you can't go wrong.
  13. Dakotafan macrumors 6502

    Dec 3, 2007
    I have two DLO's...the most recent one here...for those who say there is poor audio quality from FM transmitters I haven't heard it - but I've only used these:

  14. zen macrumors 68000


    Jun 26, 2003
    So the Belkin Tunebase works with an iPhone? Cool. I assume this will be the case for the iPhone 3G as well. I was going to get a touch for the car, but if this works for the iPhone then cool!
  15. cronked macrumors newbie

    Jul 15, 2008
    Tunebase and iPhone 3G

    I just ordered a Tunebase FM Transmitter for my iPhone 3G. I'll let you know how it goes. I should mention that this is Part # F8Z183 which is the most recent one. There are other Tunebase FM Transmitters that have different part numbers and they are typically cheaper. Mine was about $100. I don't know the difference between the different versions. Mine states it can be used on the iPhone but didn't say anything about 3G. I should have it within a week or so.
  16. cronked macrumors newbie

    Jul 15, 2008
    Belkin Tunebase FM

    So I got my Belkin Tunebase FM for my car and it works great with the iPhone 3G. I don't even get a message that says "this charger won't work..." or whatever. It charges my iPhone 3G and transmits via FM to my stereo. The FM transmission is great at times and other times I get static. I live in the city so I think that might be the reason why. It also has an audio out jack that you can attach a cassette adapter to. It holds the iPhone firmly in place and you can rotate it as well. I haven't taken a call through it yet so I don't know how well that works. I should note that Belkin has different models of this transmitter. The one I have is the most recent, part #F8Z183. I have no idea of the earlier models will work with the iPhone 3G or not. This unit was $100 but it is worth it to me to have one solution that looks good, easy to use without wires going all over the place!
  17. dccorona macrumors 68020


    Jun 12, 2008
    the ringer would come through the speakers, yes (it did with mine at least, but that was one that plugs into the headphone port)

    the thing is, ALL FM transmitters are AWFUL
    terrible quality, hard to use
    youll spend a day messing around with it trying to find the right station
  18. importluva macrumors member

    Jun 4, 2008
    If your iPhone is warning you that the accessory is not compatible, especially when the accessory is charging the iPhone, i would not use that accessory. Protect your investment, spend a bit more and buy 'Made for iPhone' or 'iPhone compatible' products only.

    I have a TuneBase FM with the F8Z183 part number. It is listed as iPhone compatible and i got it from the Apple Store here in Atlanta. I find it is far better than most FM transmitters, but occasionally you will have to hunt for a station suitable for your area.
  19. Alphanumeric macrumors member

    Jul 22, 2008
    FYI, if your antenna is detachable go ahead and remove it when listening to your FM transmitter. After I do that I have zero interference.
  20. Meyvn macrumors 6502

    Feb 3, 2005
    If you have a tape deck or an Aux In you could get a much, much, MUCH better solution for under $30 easily (probably under 20). Just get the Belkin original iPhone adapter, plug the cassette adapter (or aux in cable) into it, and use the adapter as the mic/call answer button.

    If you don't, you could still get a WAY better direct connect for under 100. They're all over the internet these days, and from my experience install isn't that expensive, or if you feel like doing it yourself, not that difficult.

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