As new cars have continued to grow line-in ports, accessory makers have released fewer of the FM transmitters that were once widely relied upon to broadcast music from iPods to older car stereos. There’s still some demand for transmitters, however, which is why Scosche has released freqOut ($60), an app-optional digital FM transmitter that works with iPods and iPhones. Inside the freqOut package are the transmitter unit — a circular controller with a blue screen and an aux-out port off to the left — which stick out of a gooseneck mount connected to a car charging bulb. A permanently connected cable runs to an iPod/iPhone Dock Connector that’s been specially designed to accommodate cases, while a detachable 3.5mm audio cable connects to freqOut and the aux-in port of a car for users who have that option. Both the freqOut unit and the free tuneFreq application you can download enable you to change FM radio stations, auto-locate clear stations, and create presets. We were pleased by how well the app worked to find clear channels, and surprised to see a feature that enables it to check for empty FM channels in 200 or 100kHz increments. On the other hand, freqOut’s small blue screen is hard to see in bright sunlight, and though it displays RDS or iPod/iPhone current track data, you’ll be hard-pressed to read it outside without playing with the screen’s viewing angle.
Company and Price
Compatible: All iPhones, iPod 4G/5G/classic, iPod minis, iPod nanos, iPod touches