Nov 11, 2023
9 Adapters to Help Stream Tunes in Your Car
Our car experts choose every product we feature. We may earn money from the links on this page. Don't have built-in Bluetooth? These products will save you from boring Sunday drives. Music and cars go
Our car experts choose every product we feature. We may earn money from the links on this page.
Don't have built-in Bluetooth? These products will save you from boring Sunday drives.
Music and cars go hand in hand, all the way back to the invention of the radio. Since then, countless songs have romanticized road trips, cruising, and the freedom of cars. Take a bow, Bobby Troup.
Today, we get to enjoy the music options provided by our phones. Thanks to the seemingly extraterrestrial technology we possess called Bluetooth, our listening options are endless, and our cars are the perfect place to enjoy some tunes. However, even if you don't have Bluetooth integrated into your vehicle, there are still plenty of options to jam out on the freeway. We selected these top-rated choices from Amazon that'll do the trick. Now queue up the new Rise Against album, roll the windows down, and let 'er rip.
Upgrade Your Older Car's Interior with Newfangled Tech
This is your basic Bluetooth FM transmitter. It relays your phone's Bluetooth signal and converts it into FM radio waves, which your vehicle's radio then picks up. This one also features a pair of USB ports, which enables you to charge two devices at once.
This product does the same thing as the above but offers some flexibility thanks to myriad buttons on the adjustable head. The volume button in the middle can be handy in a pinch. However, this transmitter only offers one USB charging port.
If you have an aux port but no headphone jack on your phone, this is the one you want. This Bluetooth-to-aux adapter produces a cleaner sound than an FM transmitter. After a charge time of 1.2 hours, you'll be able to enjoy 12.8 hours of constant play time. The package includes a micro-USB charging cable as well.
This Bluetooth aux adapter functions the same as the previous, but with active noise canceling if you plan on making on-road calls. For music, the sound quality of these little guys is excellent. This one has a longer playing time of 16 hours, but with a longer charging time at 2.5 hours.
This small device produces some of the best sound available for Bluetooth adapters. The only catch is that you need a USB port and an aux port in close proximity. The Firefly features high-res audio and a ground loop isolator that eliminates hissing and other unwanted noises from intruding into your Taylor Swift tune.
You have to go back a few generations of audio capability to stumble upon cassette players in cars, but they're still out there. This adapter inserts right into your car's cassette player and typically produces a cleaner sound than a Bluetooth FM transmitter. You just need a phone with a headphone jack—which seems to be becoming rarer.
Sometimes you can't beat some good ol' aux cables. This two-pack contains a pair of four-foot cables with nylon braiding and 24K gold-plated connectors to eliminate interference. The stereo sound from an auxiliary connection is widely considered to be superior to Bluetooth, but you pay for it in convenience.
If you own an Apple product, you know how annoying it can be finding adapters that work. This aux cord features a lightning jack on one end and a regular 3.5mm auxiliary jack on the other. Again, the actual sound of a physical aux connection tops Bluetooth any day.
If you want to totally upgrade your car's audio abilities, this NavTool device becomes your entire infotainment hub, offering built-in Apple CarPlay. This provides access to music, GPS, and phone calls, all while being easily accessible right next to your steering wheel. It also features an HDMI input to connect other devices. Forget adapters, just upgrade the whole deck!
The Hearst Autos Gear Team is dedicated to bringing you the very best in automotive tools, parts, and accessories, based on the expertise of the editors of Car and Driver, Road & Track, and Autoweek.
Best Catalytic-Converter Anti-Theft Devices
The Best Labor Day Generator Sales
Best Early Labor Day TV Deals, Deemed By Experts
Labor Day Tools Sales 2023: Lowe’s, Home Depot
The Best Motorcycle Jackets You Can Buy
Best Shop Vacs for 2023, Tested
Top-Rated Tire Shines and Protectants
Best Apple CarPlay Head Units
Best Garage Flooring of 2023, Tested
Best Sim Racing Seats 2023
Best Home EV Chargers for 2023, Tested
The Best Car Speakers