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[September 8, 2004]

Take Your iPod on a RoadTrip!


It�s true. Owning an iPod has become a symbol of stature. It�s hard not to notice someone walking around with those sleek white wires hanging from their ears.  I don�t necessarily have the same luxury, as I commute by car. Before I sold my Honda equipped with a tape deck, I used an old tape adaptor to play my iPod in the car. Now that I own a Scion with only a CD player, I had to find another means to play my iPod. I have been shopping for a good FM transmitter, but I�ll be honest, most of them were costly, rather bulky and seemed a bit too complicated even for me, a self-proclaimed gadget junky. I just want to plug and play. Simple as that.


Newer Technology recently launched RoadTrip!, a straightforward, uncomplicated transmitter that pretends to be what looks like a regular cellular phone charger. I was lucky to get my hands on one to give it a go, and when I opened the box to see this small device, I was sort of shocked. No booklet of instructions, no complex pictures or diagrams; only the transmitter in neat plastic wrapping with the following instructions on the label:

  • Plug into your 12v cigarette lighter

  • Connect the mini-jack to your iPod

  • Tune to 107.7

  • Play!

It was almost too good to be true. I sat in my car, followed the instructions, and there they were�all of my beloved play lists in the palm of my hand transmitting straight to my stereo.


The real test was going for a drive. Because 107.7 doesn�t necessarily pick up a strong signal on my commute from Connecticut to New York, I decided to go on a longer trip this past weekend to see how well the signal would hold. Much to my surprise, it was perfectly clear, no matter where I roamed.


According to Other World Computing, tests were performed in the metropolitan areas of Northern Illinois/Chicagoland, an area with an abundance of high-power FM stations.  RoadTrip! was the only transmitter without signal bleed-through. And driving through Manhattan will provide you with static-free enjoyment as well. From the Upper East Side down to the West Village, my signal was as perfect as Bill Haley�s �13 Women� (A favorite on my play list).


Most other FM transmitters require you to set a frequency to load into your iPod, but RoadTrip! relieves you of the effort of configuring your music, allowing you to purely play.


The only minor adjustment I had to make was my car stereo�s EQ. Then again, this is probably because I have the bass set to high, a typical trait of a real rockabilly gal.


Overall, the RoadTrip! is a fantastic find at a really fantastic price: $19.99. Simple.


Product Specifications: Newer Technology RoadTrip! FM Transmitter

  • Cable Length: 30"

    Newer Technology's RoadTrip! pretending to be a cellular phone charger!

    Michael Durance
  • Left & Right channel separation : 70dB

  • Power Usage: 50mA (+- 10mA)

  • Frequency Range: 20-18KHz

  • Output Frequency: 107.7MHz (+/- 0.5MHz)


For more information, please visit RoadTrip! on the web.






Michelle Pasquerello is the Assistant Online Content Director for TMCnet. She welcomes your comments.

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