Gadget Review: Griffin iTrip Auto Universal Plus

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8 Comments to Gadget Review: Griffin iTrip Auto Universal Plus

  1. Unless you live in a radio station black hole, have a top of the line auto stereo, and never travel, this item may work for you.

    The radio transmitter in this item is unable to over come even the smallest source of external interference and you will be listening to cracking and popping your entire trip. I spent 30 min looking for a ‘clear’ FM frequency on my top end truck radio, set my unit to this frequency and prepared to enjoy my music from my iPod Touch. Now, I live in a fairly rural area, away from any big city and did not expect the noise I was getting. Almost every electrical pole, transformer station or other utility pole seemed to render my music full of cracks pops and noise. This interference is not there when just listening to my FM local station. Between noise sources, I noted that the quality of the sound was “tinny” and foreign sounding. Even using my Graphic equalizer, I was unable to get a good quality sounding music.

    If you have an auto with a rear-mounted antenna, forget it. I tried this in my wife’s Grand Prix, with a rear-mounted antenna; and it was nothing but noise. Totally unacceptable noise, week reception and poor sound quality.

    Oh, if you do buy this item, thinking it will charge your device, be prepared to purchase additional hardware. Yes, it provides a USB port, but you need to provide the proper cable for your device.

    I would highly recommend avoiding this unit.

  2. Works fine for me – would not be able to use my mp3 player in my car without it.
    I have an ancient Subaru with cassette deck & CD that will not let me use a cassette adapter for my mp3 player due to the auto reverse function.
    This allows me to use my player without having to burn everything to CDs.
    The female USB port is more convenient than I realized on purchase- it’s a nice added feature.
    Am happy with this product.

  3. I have to agree with Dan. I just got my iTrip Universal Plus, andd it works great, even though the Minneapolis/St. Paul metro area is packed with FM broadcast stations. What works really well for me is to set the iTrip and my car’s FM radio to 87.9 MHz, which is a frequency used only for a few low-power FM stations in the United States, and hence is very unlikely to interfere. The trick is to get the iTrip switched into International mode so you can tune below 88.1 MHz. Press and hold the Select button in a manner similar to the process for picking DX/LX (distant-mono/local-stereo) but keep holding the button down. Eventually, instead of blinking LX, it will blink US. At that point, release Select and press + or – to change from US to INT. Then press Select again to pick it. Now, you can tune to a frequency that is (almost) always clear. And, if the device is close enough to your car’s antenna, you should have excellent reception.

  4. Jeff, the static has nothing to do with the fact that you live in Portland, Oregon and every thing to do with the distance from the iTrip AUP and your FM antennae. The power output of such devices is regulated by the FCC so that the transmission does not disrupt the reception in adjacent automobiles. If the iTrip AUP is located near the front seat dashboard and your FM antennae is in the back of your car, then that, dude, is the cause of the hiss. Had you tried placing the iTrip AUP near your FM antennae, you would have discovered stellar sound quality. This device therefore is really designed for those cars where the FM antennae is integrated in the front windshield.

    Since you did not clarify this, a great number of people for whom this product (and other FM products like it) would work perfectly, may not even give it a try after reading your review.

    Next time you might consult someone that knows something about the technology you are dealing with (in this case FM), rather than blaming poor product performance on obsolete technology. This was not a case of an inferior product or obsolete technology. It was a case of a reviewer that didn’t know enough about the technology to do a competent review.

  5. i agree the sound is downright unbearable. i purchased this for $50.99 at bestbuy, which i’m surprised i was dumb enough to do. i’m returning this sucker right now because the static is downright unbearable and since i commute to college, even when i get a good a good signal it will die once i travel far enough away. that means i have to change stations every day and some days no radio frequency will provide good sound quality. also you can’t turn up the music very loud so this product in my opinion wouldn’t be worth 15 dollars. i’ll be glad to return this and get my 50.99 back.

  6. If you have a 2.5 Aux input, why are you using a FM Transmitter. Just get a cable that plugs directly from the iPod output jack into the aux input jack…they make those ya know.

  7. I have an itrip but it pauses the music everytime i move it, and the static is just annoying am thinking of opening it to see if any wires are cut.

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