First the story. Last weekend I went to a party given by an old friend. I know his taste in music is thin and poor but I also know that he's got a seriously high end stereo, DVD, TV system. So I took my trusty hacked 80Gb Zen Xtra with the 65Gb of music along with assorted leads. The one lead I didn't take was a 3.5mm jack to phono and anyway trying to find spare phono inputs in the back of his fitted mega-stereo was a pain. Aha, I thought, I'll use the mini FM transmitter out of the car. Except that his tuner is DAB and it doesn't have a plain old VHF-FM section. And anyway the antenna is in the roof space and is a high gain directional item.

The second story is Ford. The new shape Focus (and others) came with a new shape radio that had a CD Jukebox connector but they never actually made the jukebox. They haven't sold enough of them for any of the CD Jukebox to iPod people to produce a convertor. One year in, they changed it to one with an Aux connector but didn't actually wire in the Aux socket. Finally, they are now putting Aux sockets in the glovebox. The radio being a new shape requires much fiddling with new tools to extract and replace. And I'm trying to track down a cheap late model Ford radio to replace my early one.

And the moral of all this is. MP3 players are now everywhere. Which means that every sound device (radios, stereos, ICE, boomboxes, PCs) should come with an AUX IN 3.5mm jack socket on the front of the box. By all means add an iPod specific adapter, but please put in the 3.5mm jack as well. So why don't they?

And while we're at it. Please put headphone jacks in cars for the passengers[1].

[1]Is it illegal in the UK to wear earphones while driving? Never mind if it's sensible or not, is it illegal?

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[ 04-Aug-06 12:57pm ] [ , ]