Sunday, 4 November 2012

Play Mobile Mp3 from Any device

Nothing is easier to get music tracks than downloading them from the internet. A 10-a-day download would fill up a decent collection in a month. But how do you usually play these music, I bet with a headphone, or  perhaps a music dock, if you want to share it among everyone in the room.

Music docks come in variety of  shapes, sizes and prices. And most of the time the more expensive it is, the better it sounds. There's absolutely nothing wrong with that, but sometimes, we just need a little device to play these music into our existing stereo system, if ever we have one, thus saving us money and too much clutter of devices we've replaced.


There are four connections that I know of and have been using to stream the music content of my phone(or any multimedia devices, including PC'c and laptops) into our existing stereo system and car stereo. They are cheap and the method of connection is "you can do it your self".

  • Using 3.5mm out.

This is the easiest, cheapest and simplest way.

This type of audio out on most smartphones are handy, as this only needs a simple 3.5mm to 3.5mm male to male connector to connect to most, if not all, stereo players that have an audio input port. Connection is simple, just put one end to your smartphone's headphone port and the other end to the stereo's input port. You just need to adjust the stereo source into it's auxiliary channel to hear the music, just like what you do with a stereo dock.

Where to get the 3.5mm to 3.5mm, male to male connector? Please see below.

3.5mm to 3.5mm Male to Male Connector

  • Using Radio Signal 

The advantage of this connection compared to a wired one is there is no  need to physically connect your device into the stereo's input port. You can play it wirelessly by connecting a transmitter to stream music into the FM channel of your stereo. Useful when the stereo system has a difficult to reach input port or physical connection is not possible like no input auxiliary port like in radio receivers. 

This device needs power to work, and it can be battery or mains powered. I myself prefer a dual powered device that can take both battery and mains. This saves the need for batteries in case you'll use this often. 

Procedure is quite simple, just connect the 3.5mm cord of the transmitter into the headphone jack of your phone, then select and set the transmission range. In your stereo, set the channel into FM mode and adjust the frequency range to the same frequency that you've set on the transmitter. Then play your music.

If you have a problem with the output sound like not clear, inaudible or garbled, try turning down the volume from your phone, say put it into the middle volume only and control the overall volume from the stereo. This is to eliminate over modulation of the signal that is being transmitted for better sound. 

If the sound being played on your stereo is not that loud even when you turned up the maximum of the stereo, check if there is a volume adjustment from the transmitter. If there's none,  try turning it up from your mobile phone.

FM Transmitter

  • Using Bluetooth Signal

All smartphones are bluetooth enabled and you can use this to stream music into a bluetooth receiver. Bluetooth enabled stereo are out the market though has a higher tag price. But who needs those if you have an existing stereo already? You can bluetooth enable it easily by a suitable bluetooth music receiver.

Like the FM transmitter, this device uses power to work. Most of these devices has a built in rechargeable battery that can lasts for up to 12 hours. The connection is opposite compared with the FM transmitter. The device is connected into the input port of the stereo. Turn on the bluetooth on you both of the devices and pair your mobile phone. On your mobile phone, go to the name of the bluetooth receiver and tick the service that streams music, Media Audio. Play your music and your phone should be wirelessly streaming the sound into the receiver and the receiver into the stereo's input port.

The signal should at least decent on up to 10 meters of transmission distance.

Bluetooth Music Receiver

  • Using Booth Bluetooth and FM transmission

This is the one in my car, a receiver and a transmitter in one. The device receives signal from the phone through bluetooth and transmits it through FM signals into the car's FM stereo. It can be powered by a rechargeable battery or by the car's cigarette socket. There are devices that can only receive  telephone calls and others can  take both telephone and multimedia sounds. So be careful when you buy one to avoid disappointment.

Setting up is also easy, pair the bluetooth connection to both devices (mobile and the device), and pair the device's FM transmission setting to your car stereo's FM frequency. I usually use 88.1 which is the lowest and most accessible on both the device and the car's radio.

Bluetooth FM Transmitter

My Thoughts

New devices are created everyday,  but if we think of it, some are just redundant to existing ones. The ability to innovate and to know how to turn these existing devices into something that can enhance their potential is all we need to enjoy the technology offered by these new gadgets. It is not just saving money, but somehow putting this old gadgets into their usefullness, longer.

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