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MP3 for the car

Discussion in 'ICE, Sat Navs & Dash Cams Forum' started by TheDufster, Jun 2, 2004.

  1. TheDufster

    TheDufster
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    I want to play MP3's in my car, but I want to keep the factory fitted head unit.

    I suppose I could fit a CD-changer that plays MP3s from CD-Rs? Will the track name/title etc. be displayed on my car stereo, or does this differ from brand/type of car stereo etc. I have a Vauxhall Omega.

    The ideal solution I am looking for is a hard-disk unit that can go in the boot. My questions are:
    1) Do these exist?
    2) If so, how to you transfer the files to the hard disk?

    I am sure I read somewhere about some system that sits in the boot of your car and as long as the car is parked close enough to the house, then you can transfer files from your home wireless network.

    Any help will be greatly appreciated, before I trawl the car-entertainment shops.
     
  2. PaulBoy

    PaulBoy
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    Dufster - I dont know what HU you have fitted but it is possible to fit an MP3 compatible changer to a HU that itself isnt capable of playing MP3's (I know various Alpine HU are like that)
    If you want more specialist advice from an ICE Forum & can highly recommend www.talkaudio.co.uk - v/friendly IMHO ...
    HTH - Paul ;)
     
  3. graham.myers

    graham.myers
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    I've got the mStation in car mp3. I bought the 10gb version which gave a couple fo thousanf tracks. It takes standard IDE drives so when I filled it I relaced it with a 60gb unit. it comes with a boot mountable cradle that connects to the head unit and the unit slides in and out of this for securityt.

    I also have a USB2 cradle plugged into my pc which it just slides into so I can transfer files. Its so good at transferring files I use it as a portable hard disk as well - got all sorts of junk I take back and forth from work! This will also plug ito your hi-fi with a couple of phono leads

    it aint cheap it aint small but its great!

    My prevoius car had a cd autochanger and sat nat so all the connectors at the back of the head unit were used up. It also comes with an FM tuner so I just used that and tuned in one of the fm stations. My new car should be Ok, I just havn;t got arouond to fitting it :(

    I got mine from www.6thplanet.co.uk

    I currently have aound 40gb used (about 7500 tracks at 192kb/s)
     
  4. TheDufster

    TheDufster
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    Thanks for the info guys, I will check it out.

    The mStation looks interesting, but from the link to the website, it seems that it has a control unit. Where do you mount this? Does it replace the head unit? I hope not.

    Sorry if I am misinterpreting things...it's just that I have a month old son :clap: , and internet time is precious, so I tend to read things a bit quick!!!

    Cheers
     
  5. dolph

    dolph
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    It doesn't replace the head unit - you just attach it somewhere on your dash to control the box in the boot.
     
  6. TheDufster

    TheDufster
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    Ok – just some more questions then!

    How big is the Hard-drive unit? (will it fit in the glovebox?)
    I guess it’s not a good idea to leave the hard-drive unit in the car, especially in winter, because of the cold?

    I have seen that the hard-drive unit uses an IDE interface to dock with the PC? This doesn't suit me because I have a laptop, is there a USB connection available?

    I've just seen the Dension DMP3 on the net (80gb) which offers a USB connection. The Dension website seems to imply that you can use the unit with a hi-fi at home - does it come with a Remote Control? It's not much use for this otherwise.

    Another alternative would be an iPOD and a cradle (Dension offer a wired solution which looks good).

    Decisions, Decisions, Decisions!

    Cheers
     
  7. dolph

    dolph
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    You'd need to buy an external usb harddrive caddy to use it with your laptop.
     
  8. RobTi

    RobTi
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    try maplins they are doing the 10gb version for £150 bar :smashin: gain
     
  9. Turlough

    Turlough
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    Everytime I ask for someone to come forward with experience of Dension I'm met with a deafening silence. Except for the one occasion when I tried to use their iPod Icelink and found out from my car av installer that he'd stopped using them as the software is buggy and it was uneconomic to try 3 times to fit. Not surprisingly the Icelink did not work and I'm still waiting for an update. :mad:
     
  10. TommyTucker

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    Just reading through some posts and came across this one. I have recently bought the Dension DH-100ix (head unit with DMP3C hard drive integrated) and thought I'd post my initial thoughts.

    :thumbsup:
    The display is very nice (apparently it has been modified in the 'ix' version as there was too much reflection). Customisable colours, startup/shutdown logos, error messages, track display format (i.e. pretty much everything!)

    :thumbsup:
    Software so far has been fine (Dension seem to be pretty good at listening to their customers regarding bugs and enhancements, albeit a little slow in getting new firmware out) and sound quality seems to be pretty good. (Ripped my CDs at 128Mb and don't notice any difference in quality, but I did have a rather rubbish Vauxhall CD player before......)

    :thumbsdow
    I had a problem with the first front panel in that the connections weren't quite flush with the head unit, but the company I bought it from (www.ihavetohave.it :thumbsup: ) were very good and sent me another one out within 2 days. It worked fine.

    :thumbsup:
    Hard drive supplied is 20G in size, but can be upgraded with industry standard 3.5" hard disks - I haven't tried this (yet!) but I believe it's quite a simple task. Dension will advise on recommended hard disks if you want. Their 'community forums' are pretty good.

    :thumbsup:
    You can use standard Sony stalk connectors to get the unit working with your steering wheel/stalk controls, but :thumbsdow if you have an in-car display like my Vauxhall, no testing has been done on compatibility with that, and Dension's official line is "it won't work!"

    All in all, not bad for £400 (if you want to use your stalk/steering wheel controls connectors are priced around £40). Beats a CD changer any day!
     
  11. roversd1

    roversd1
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  12. windfall

    windfall
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    Hi
    If you have a standard head unit (fitted by car manufacturer) you could look into this.

    www.phatnoise.com

    Choose your make of car - and away you go, can be expensive but then you can use your standard head unit to store 20GB> of music and access the music from the headunit you may already have with voice prompts etc.

    Hope this is of help.

    Tone
     
  13. robertgoode

    robertgoode
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    i have recently purchased the dension dh100ix head unit along with the dmp3 unit. i have a 10 gig hard disk in the dmp3. I have had no serious problems but one thing i can't get it to do is to play music continously. at the end of each track i have to press play so that the next track starts. can anyone tell me what needs to be done or if there is something that i am missing. i am probably stupid for not knowing what the problem is but i can just not get it to play continous or to start playing when ignition is turned on
     
  14. superman22

    superman22
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    The best way to MP3's to your car easily is to get an Ipod, of some description, either a mini or one of the big one,s and use an ipod jack (itravel???) to tune into your stereo. That would have three bonuses, in that, you get a HUGE ammount of storage (and good sound qulaity), you can use the Ipod normally outside of your car, and you can use it in any car u get into! easy
     
  15. robertgoode

    robertgoode
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    anyone have a sensible reply to my previos post. getting an ipod is a good idea and linking it to the car does give you more storage but you are still limited. i have a nice system but have not yet found how to get the software how to allow continous play. any ideas anyone?
     
  16. as8602

    as8602
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    Just got one of these yesterday. Currently with a 10 GB disk from an old laptop, but a spanky new 80GB disk is on order now I know it works. So I can have everything at a decent bit rate.

    You're probably just selecting a track in a folder then clicking play? That's why it's just playing the track. Assuming you've got a folder structure with each album in a folder, try selecting the *folder* and clicking play. I use a structure with artist\album - with this you can select the artists folder, click play and it will play through all their albums. Also, the random function works on the current folder subtree. All quite cool but takes a few minutes to get used to.

    My quick findings are that the MP3 stuff works really well. The HD noise is noticeable with the volume right down, but you'd never listen at that level, and my new disk might well be quieter. Love the ability to customise the front panel display, but wish there was another larger font size available. The folder navigation for MP3 files feels a little bit fiddly, but in reality is far better than my old scrabbling around the car for poorly labelled minidiscs - plus I've got *all* my music there, rather than just a small selection.

    Bad points - it's the radio, really. Pretty crap reception - doesn't even find the main BBC stations on autoscan, and struggles to pick up more than a couple of RDS station names. Wondering if this is common to the model or if others have done better and mine is substandard.

    But for around GBP 250 including the 80 GB disk, it's pretty impressive to have all of my 400 or so CDs available in the car.
     
  17. Lainge_flack

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    I would like a DH100ix where can i buy 1 from?
     
  18. Darren Blake

    Darren Blake
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    Thank God! Some other Dension users :)

    I just bought a second hand DH-201 (the forerunner of the DH100ix) which has its hard drive in a separate caddy (DMP3-A) which is mounted remptely (I have mine under the seat). The DH-201 has a regular CD player behind the flip-down front panel instead of the DMP3-C drive.

    Apart from a power-off thump through the speakers that I can't get any feedback on, I think its bloody brilliant. Trying to match the backlight colour exacty to my dash gave me hours of fun. Thank goodness it remembers its settings when you disconnect the battery. :)

    Just to be slighty contrary, my radio seems to work fine. It is lightning fast when it scans and locks onto all the stations (nataional and local) with no issues at all.

    Apart from the thump I can't fault it.
     
  19. as8602

    as8602
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    A couple of months on I still love my dh100ix.

    Got the main unit replaced to address the crap radio reception, and it's now "less bad" than before but still pretty crappy.

    Still love the choice of having *everything* from my music collection (700-odd CDs) available in the car.

    Never feel I can quite get the "right" sound through the (admittedly crap) original speakers in my Astra. The various DSP options are all to extreme, or a bit thin. My previous Sony MD unit had a Dynabass option that was just right without going too far. But I think that's more a criticism of my speakers than the unit.
     
  20. paxton

    paxton
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    :thumbsup: Another user! All the official sites/forums regarding this marvellous kit seem to have dissappeared.

    I had the original DMP3-A which had a seperate satellite display which you mounted to the dash. Upgraded to the DH-201 head-unit and have it connected to the DMP3-A (80Gb hd) which has been sitting in the boot for ages now...must be about 4 or 5yrs.

    Only problem I've ever had was when the tracks started jumping and then the thing wouldn't power up correctly. Investigated a bit and it turned out to be a failing hd, so replaced that and all was well. :D

    Dunno how I ever survived with a few cd's or tapes(!) in the car, rather than my entire collection. :clap:
     

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