Engadget: Much as we hate to admit it, we can’t all afford a fancy new car with Sync or Mini Connected inside — I mean, come on, we’re not made of money, people. Thankfully, it seems MP3Car has a pretty slick and affordable solution to the problem of fumbling with your iPhone when you should probably be focusing on the road and not crashing into things. (more…)
Engadget: They may not have been the highlight of Sony’s IFA 2010 press conference, but the company’s new XNV head units deserve a place of their own, given they integrate full-blown TomTom GPS units and audio/video playback into their 7- and 6.1-inch WVGA touchscreens. Presently destined for Europe, the XNV-L77BT, XNV-770BT, XNV-L66BT and XNV-660BT will ship in November with TeleAtlas maps of 45 nations for a number of undisclosed prices, with each sporting Bluetooth, auxiliary and USB jacks, DivX playback and a DVD drive. The presumably-more-expensive “L” models also come with the usual array of traffic and weather alerts plus a Google-powered local search function, and all four decks sport a music recommendation engine that reportedly changes track based on your mood… though how the system measures your emotional attentions, we’re not quite sure, and hope to find out soon. Press release after the break.
AVReview: Despite its critical success in the home entertainment market, Pioneer hasn’t neglected its in-car entertainment division with the release of eight new head units.
To sum up then:
- The DEH-1000E is entry-level with front aux-in connector for MP3 hook-up, rotary volume control and red or green (DEH-1020E) colour codes.
- The DEH-2000MP/DEH-2020MP/DEH-2000MPB offer MP3/WMA/WAV playback from ripped CDs, sports a front aux input for MP3 hook-up, on-screen CD text and OEM remote control input so you can control the unit from an existing steering wheel remote. Available in red, blue or green button display.
- The DEH-3000MP features an RCA pre-out so users can add an amplifier, additional speakers or subwoofer.
- The DEH-4000UB is exclusive to Argos and sports a front-mounted USB socket for external MP3 hook-up.
- The DEH-5000UB arrives in a choice of ten colours and comes with rear-mounted USB and aux inputs keeping the front clutter free for the more style conscious.
- The DEH-50UB is the first model from the range to allow iPod Direct Audio Control so you can control your iPod through the stereo with the option of an extra remote control. There are also rear-mounted USB and direct sub inputs.
SFGate: Makers of car stereos have sophisticated ways to let you play iPod library on the road
Cnet rating: 8.6 out of 10 (excellent; editors’ choice)
The good: Elegant and feature-packed system with a range of useful and intuitive media playback features.
The bad: Hard buttons on far side of driver; incomplete source menu.
The price: €475
For those considering an in-car multimedia system, the Clarion MAX675VD is a compelling option. With most of the advanced digital media playback features available, including a great iPod interface, plus customization options and large selection of add-on devices, the MAX675VD is a user-friendly, all-in-one system. It makes use of a virtual version of the iPod wheel interface when a player is connected. Disc-based video formats supported include DVD and VCD.
Wired: At a CES preview event the other night, where companies showed off some of the stuff they’ll be unveiling next year, I noticed one product that doesn’t sound too sexy initially, but could become a hot trend in coming years: a car kit that can be used to add Bluetooth A2DP to your car stereo, called the Parrot MK6000 ($240, about 185 euro).