Playing music from Android phone?

In car entertainment: stereo; speakers; portable devices etc

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MacColl
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Playing music from Android phone?

Post by MacColl » Tue May 10, 2011 11:44 pm

I have no music source as of yet in my Mk2. I do have an old Kenwood CD player that could be wired in and run the standard coaxial speakers in the doors. Was going to get a pair of those Alpine replacements. It doesn't look too modern for the car.

However I have just taken a massive technology leap and have an android phone on order. Looking at using Spotify having never taken the plunge with downloading music. I have always bought CD's as someone who has actually recorded and minorly released music I have always thought that the marketplace is a total farce for the actual musician trying to make their money.

Anyway would I really need to get a head unit with a jack for the mobile or is there another way? like an amp with an input then I could look at a more serious install with components and bass install in the rear. Still have the old CD player for a more OEM look. Or is there another way? like a way of getting an input into the Kenwood??

Or are mobiles crap for the digitally compressed sound anyway, now I'm out of my depth.. I've even got Records and 8tracks in my house :music:

It's an HTC Desire phone but I don't want to get into a mobile conversation because it leaves me cold with all that "that's rubbish get this" nonsense.
Last edited by MacColl on Wed May 11, 2011 12:23 am, edited 1 time in total.



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Re: Playing music from Android phone?

Post by the edmundator » Wed May 11, 2011 12:09 am

Most people won't notice the difference between an mp3 and a CD (particularly in a car, which isn't ever going to be the best place to listen to music), especially if you ensure all your digital music is recorded at the highest bit-rate possible.

A head unit with a 3.5mm jack is probably going to be best in terms of ease/cost/quality.

Cheapest would be one of those FM transmitter things that plugs into your 12v socket and broadcasts your mp3 player to your stereo on FM. I've found them to be a bit crap, with interference wherever you try to tune in.

I'm sure there are fancy-pants things you could do with amps etc, but that's beyond me.


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Nate
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Re: Playing music from Android phone?

Post by Nate » Wed May 11, 2011 2:16 am

FM transmitter would be a nice easy way to do it. personally i find MP3 bad to listen to in a good environment, and i'd guess that if you have a good ear (as a recording musician i'm presuming you have) you may have a similar experience. i can easily hear the aliasing of higher frequency stuff - like cymbals and the siblance in vocals. in my truck it's hard to tell the difference due to lots of background noise, but in my van which is quieter and has a much better stereo in it, it is really obvious.


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Re: Playing music from Android phone?

Post by DJPremier » Wed May 11, 2011 3:37 pm

Even cheaper head units mostly have a line in nowadays. I run sounds this way from my HTC Desire, but my head unit (a £35 Silvercrest unit from Lidl :yup: ) also has an SD card reader and a USB port, so mostly I run music from a little library of 2Gb SD cards. This means one less DAC in the system and no processing introduced by the phones audio system. They usually do some sort of enhancement fiddling to enhance audio quality on the earbuds. Smartphones aren't really the best source devices for music, and audio isn't particularly optimised in Android's 2.2 audio code (promised to be fixed or improved in V3.0 but still promiseware).

On the other hand, it's a rocco. Not the festival hall. ;) And it all depends on the type of music you listen to etc. and budget.


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Re: Playing music from Android phone?

Post by Nate » Wed May 11, 2011 8:34 pm

are those lidl head units any cop? saw they had one with a build in bluetooth kit for £35 last time i was in there


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Re: Playing music from Android phone?

Post by RevDarkman » Wed May 11, 2011 8:38 pm

MacColl wrote:.. I've even got Records and 8tracks in my house :music:

kudos to you dude! :hi: :ok:

I've just put a Sony xplod thingy head unit in mine, with Aux in - will report back once I loaded some tunes on my Android.

My speakers are shot though!

Oh and I have an FM transmitter, it's ok but heavy on bateries, but does suffer interference.


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Re: Playing music from Android phone?

Post by bluestreak56 » Wed May 11, 2011 11:44 pm

Nate wrote:are those lidl head units any cop? saw they had one with a build in bluetooth kit for £35 last time i was in there
We bought one from Aldi about 4 or 5 years ago (Tevion) worked well till the radio conked out this year. Bluetooth still worked although the button was a bit dodgy.

On the whole does a job. :yup:


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Re: Playing music from Android phone?

Post by MacColl » Sun Jun 19, 2011 1:08 am

Well I ended up buying a Kenwood head unit with a 3.5mm jack input.

Only just fitted Alpine speakers in the back till I can do my door card builds for bigger components. Bought the Vaccines CD for a fiver and sounds pretty good even though the sound stage is at the rear for now.

However once I purchased my first ever MP3 for my HTC Desire phone I have discovered it has terrible low volume issues. The Deftones download sounded ok in the amp in my flat but when plugged into the car head unit it is seriously low in volume. I have the Power amp app which does boost things but it's just not good enough.

It seems that the chat on the web is that it may be a desire t-mobile issue which is who I have my contract with. Keeping the volume low for European legislation nonsense. There are firmware updates but I don't have a clue how all this works?? Beginning to think that this whole android malarkey is just an overpriced overcomplicated waist of time. I was actually going to be getting a Sony Ericsson phone but they didn't have it in stock and offered me the Desire.

Can buy CD's on-line for around the same price anyway. Should have stuck with pay as you go.



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Re: Playing music from Android phone?

Post by mr.brown » Sun Jun 19, 2011 1:58 am

Check the head unit instructions - there's usually some sort of gain control on the headphone input - maybe it's set too low.



MacColl
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Re: Playing music from Android phone?

Post by MacColl » Sun Jun 19, 2011 1:20 pm

Yes cheers you are right :good: Managed to adjust the aux input to make it a bit closer in level to the CD player. Desire still lacks volume, a firmware update might solve things along with a better quality jack to jack.

I actually found that the HTC/Android music players had a better base EQ setting rather than the overcomplicated Power Amp app although it does seem to boost things.

Can live with this for now. I'll see how it sounds with the components in the front.