Car Stereos with USB ports
Ask iLounge offers readers the opportunity to get answers to their iPod-, iPhone-, iPad-, iTunes-, or Apple TV-related questions from a member of the iLounge editorial team. We'll answer several questions here each week, and of course, you can always get help with more immediate concerns from the iLounge Discussion Forums. Submit your questions for consideration using our Ask iLounge Submit Form. We reserve the right to edit questions for grammar, spelling, and length.
Q: I recently bought an in-dash CD deck for my car which has a USB port for plugging in my iPod to play tunes from its library. But whenever I do, it plays the same list of random songs every time. The songs aren’t members of any certain playlist. It’s a seemingly random selection from my library, but it’s always the same ones. I’m unable to override this no matter what I do. Any suggestions on how I can play the playlists I want through the stereo?
A: Unless a car stereo’s USB port feature is accompanied with an explicit mention of iPod compatibility, you can - unfortunately - be sure it will be nearly useless to iPod users. Decks offering generic USB compatibility with music players work by searching the devices’ file structure for compatible tracks. Here’s the catch: even the best of these players, which organize the identified tracks according to the folders they’re stored in, will not be useful with iPods. This is because all iPods store tracks in random locations spread across 20 or so folders. A specially-crafted database created behind the scenes by iTunes instructs the iPod on how to access and organize these tracks.
In short, it’s bad news for you and your CD deck. If your deck supports an auxiliary input, you can simply use an audio cable from your iPod’s headphone jack or a line-out adapter to feed analog audio to your car’s system.
For other readers, know that in-dash decks certainly do exist which have the ability to read the iPod’s database, and therefore correctly navigate its listing of Artists, Albums, Playlists, and more. We’ve covered a high-end example here, but cheaper options exist with full iPod database-browsing capabilities, both as full stereo-replacement decks and as adapters that work with factory stereos in many new cars. Check the list of manufacturers at Apple’s iPod-Car Integration web page.
- Will removing a credit card from Safari also remove it from Apple Pay?
- Can I mute Handoff calls coming into my Mac from my iPhone?
- How do I keep my iPhone calls from ringing on my Mac?
- Why doesn’t Traffic show up on my Today Notifications Screen?
- Why doesn’t my iPhone reconnect to Wi-Fi after I turn it on?
- Why can’t I see the iPad-style landscape view on my iPhone 6 Plus?
- Apple’s exclusive audiobook deal with Audible ends in Europe following EU antitrust scrutiny
- Nintendo officially announces Fire Emblem Heroes for iOS, coming Feb. 2
- Rumor: Apple working on second-generation Apple Pencil
- GarageBand 2.2 adds Logic Pro X integration, Alchemy synth, Multi-Take Recording
- FTC files complaint against Qualcomm citing royalty deal with Apple
- India mulling manufacturing regulation changes which could woo Apple
- Apple Music creative team discusses the service’s exclusives, future
- Apple raising UK App Store prices by more than 25 percent
- Iovine fuels speculation about Apple’s interest in scripted TV shows
- Report: ‘iPhone 8’ to include upgraded water resistance
- Revogi Smart Lightbulb, Smart Lightstrip, Smart Candle + Smart Meter Plug
- Audeze iSine10 In-Ear Headphones
- MOCACARE MOCACuff Connected Blood Pressure Monitor
- Apple AirPods
- Elgato Eve Motion
- Olloclip Core Lens Set for iPhone 7/7 Plus
- Logitech Pop Home Switch Starter Pack
- Elgato Eve Light Switch
- iHome iPLWBT5 Docking Clock Radio for iPhone and Apple Watch
- Brydge 12.9 iPad Pro Keyboard
- Top Five: The Best Products for Building a Smart Home with HomeKit
- Instant Expert: Secrets & Features of watchOS 3
- Instant Expert: Secrets & Features of tvOS 10
- Instant Expert: Secrets & Features of iOS 10
- Inside the betas: iOS 10 Photos gets Advanced Computer Vision
- Inside the betas: iOS 10 Music app delivers ‘clarity and simplicity’
- Inside the betas: iOS 10 Maps gets a major redesign
- Inside the betas: iOS 10 shakes up the user experience
- Inside the betas: watchOS 3 promises a real speed boost
- Inside the betas: A sneak peek at what’s new in tvOS 10