HOW-TO: Add an auxilary jack to your car

Auxilary Car Jack

Hello readers and welcome to another HOW-TO article. I originally was planning on doing the CVS Disposable Camcorder Hack, but it’s only 90% done. To answer questions of can it be reused?: Yes, it can. But if you want to see it in action, I’ll have it out and working at the first ever Hackaday meetup on Thursday. Come on out and see how it’s done or if you can’t make it, I’ll have it up next Tuesday for you guys.

But now we’re talkin’ audio. Sweet crisp sounding liquid music

Comments

  1. benhc911 says:

    does no one realise that that isnt realy an ipod but rather one of the knock offs?

  2. in response to #49. Posted Jun 16, 2005, 2:37 PM ET by eleongonzales

    don’t know what you’d expect from best buy, they pay their salespeople to be clerks, not have any product knowledge whatsoever. in the seattle area, try innovative, magnolia audio/video (watch out, best buy owns these guys now), or car toys (listed in order of likelihood you will find somebody who knows what they’re talking about ;). out of the area, trust your instincts, and don’t expect anything out of best buy beyond good prices.

  3. machs_fuel says:

    pioneer head units with cd changer input (IP-Bus) can be hack – get a IPBus cable and a 3/8 headphone jack.. there are some diagrams about on mp3car.com

    for sadpanda – on my HU i need to turn on the aux source but holding the function button for 3 sec while the HU is off.
    Pioneer has manuals available on the web

  4. Matt Gilbert says:

    benhc911: it’s not a knock off. it’s just first gen. how soon we forget…

  5. meesterbrian says:

    i love my aiwa head unit. aux in right up front. if your head unit is shite and if you have the means, i highly recommend one.

  6. john says:

    i noticed something interesting while on vacation in texas this past week. I rented a boat that had a very cheap stereo in it and it had an aux input jack. Kind of strange how the cheap stuff has the good extra features but looks bad, while expensive stuff doesnt have it but looks good

  7. whizzbang says:

    I did a version of this for my VW Golf’s Beta radio

    http://jondean.100megs34.com/bgb/archives/2005/06/adding_an_auxil.html

    enjoy!

  8. Llama says:

    I have a 1997 mustang with the OEM radio. I was able to find left and right chanel and patch into them off of the cd player, but I couldn’t find a “mute” to the radio for me to add a switch on.

  9. Darren says:

    Taking the theory, I was able to add a switch and wire in an aux-in line in my 93 GMC pickup with a seperate tape deck from the head unit. Thanks for the inspiration!

  10. Darren says:

    Taking the theory, I was able to add a switch and wire in an aux-in line in my 93 GMC pickup with a seperate tape deck from the head unit. Red & White (& ground) wires matched up to audio jack.
    I put a switch between the two blue wires coming into the deck and this made the aux audio mode kick in without having to run a tape.
    Thanks for the inspiration!

  11. meltz says:

    hey i just got a panasonic (cq-dp383u, that is) that was sitting on the clearence table at soundtrack. i saw it had an RCA input labeled cd-ch in which i later found out it stood for cd changer, and then a port for the controls of a cd changer or whatever. im trying to listen to my mp3 player, but i think the deck needs to have a cd changer connected to recieve signal from that rca input. does anyone know how i can make it “think” that there is a cd changer connected so i can listen to anything through that rca input. i hope this makes sense.

  12. gumigecko says:

    I have a Subaru Outback ’96, and I currently hook up my iPod using the Monston CarPlay Plus, the sound is ok if I play the music low, but for really hearing things it sucks. I’m wondering, if I take the time to install an aux input for the iPod, is it really going to make THAT big of a diff in terms of sound quality?

  13. no_code says:

    My ’05 Honda Element came with this installed. In fact, I think that all Honda Elements have one of these in them stock because it certainly was not an option.

  14. tallguy says:

    I have a 1994 Chevy Suburban that I wanted to hook up. It costs an extra $170 in installation to get a new unit from best buy so I took creative action. I uninstalled the tape deck, spliced and sodered the outgoing audio cables, and hooked up a spliced end of a male headphone cable. Now it’s great, the stereo thinks a tape is in there, and plays my ipod. Its awesome.

  15. Matt Gilbert says:

    i’ve added a few notes to the how-to, including some possible safety concerns that someone emailed to me, so if you’re thinking of doing this, check out the updates.

    http://www.mattgilbert.net/carstereoauxinput/

  16. Stan says:

    Another option is going to Circuit City and buying a USA Spec aux adapter for $60. Would have liked to DIYed it, but I dont see how this proj can be adapted to a BMW

  17. Fred says:

    hi i was looking into getting the FM Modulator and I found the audiovox FMM100A for 50 at circuit city. Im not too knowledgeble about car audio stuff. would it be hard to install that? any other comments or suggestions are appreciated.

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  20. Auri says:

    i go over how to do all this stuff in my book, geek my ride, which you can pick up at amazon.

    a few notes:
    * if you have a saab (and this applies to other cars as well) stock radio, you may have to have the dealer enable the aux-in feature on your car (for a nice little fee, go fig).
    * if your stereo doesn’t have an aux-in, get a stereo transmitter, like the belkin icast, or one of the new monster solutions. monster just release a neat product that is designed specifically for each specific car and for ipod use.
    * while a jack on your dash is a decent place to put the jack, you may actually want to keep the a/v in your center compartment, where you can put your ipod and just let it play, then keep it in there, out of the heat and out of view, when you leave your car.

    best,

    -auri
    author, geek my ride (http://www.geekmyride.net)

  21. Auri says:

    sorta related, here’s how to add a usb hub to sync portable digital music players in your car with a carpc:

    http://www.extremetech.com/article2/0,1558,1790867,00.asp

  22. Marcio says:

    I did the changes to connect my iPod to a Pioneer head with cd charger like this guy have done: http://www.gutterslide.com/ip-bus_hack

    Unfortunately, I couldn’t hear anything because the head do not change to “CD listening” when I push the power. It acts as I haven’t a cd charger in the car. I think I should connect other pin to say to the head to listen to the cdcharger input.
    Can anybody help me?

    Thanks a lot.
    Marcio, from Brazil.

  23. rompom7 says:

    oh my god. you don’t relise how long i have been looking for a hack like this. i thought i would come here to see if anything is new and then i spotted this hack.

    thanks heaps.

  24. Bobby walker says:

    I’d like someone to add a hack…or additional hack, for someone like myself where I don’t have the port to come off of. I have an early 90’s chevy and the radio has no input source at all, just the built-in tape deck, am I screwed to the fact that I can ONLY use FM Modulation? I’ve tried and it sucks. If anyone could help…that’d be a great part II to this wonderful hack.
    wcs50371@hotmail.com

  25. Marcio says:

    wcs50371,

    I don’t know if you have skill enough to handle with electronic stuff.
    You could open the head, looking for the gain button in the point where its middle tap goes to the board (circuit). It should be the input for the head’s pre-amp.
    At this point you insert anything (a rele, a switch…) to switch between the normal circuit or the “new” auxiliary input.

    Here in Brazil the guys from audio car stuffs do it for a fare of $60.
    A bit expensive. With this money you can buy a new head with normal AM/FM band (only) and builtin aux input into the front.

    Good luck.
    Marcio

  26. James says:

    Has anyone had made a cable like this for a Honda?http://www.geocities.com/blhobbs.rm/Mazda_stereo.html

  27. James says:

    Has anyone had made a cable like this for a Honda?http://www.geocities.com/blhobbs.rm/Mazda_stereo.html

  28. joe says:

    I had a question, I have a 2004 Ford Mustang, V-6 with the Mach 1000 system. It has an indash 6 disc cd changer. Okay I want to add an AUX input to it to hook up my mp3 player. The factory head unit has a “cd/aux” button and a “sat” button. I was woundering if I could use one of these but I cannot find nothing on the ciruit board to help me out. Thanks

  29. Twodeadpoets says:

    There’s a good hack of a Subaru radio at Subaruoutback.org

  30. Twodeadpoets says:
  31. M.s.aribowo says:

    Like Marcio From Brazil (Number-72), I also did the changes to connect my iPod to a Pioneer head with cd charger like this guy have done: http://www.gutterslide.com/ip-bus_hack

    My Pioneer type is DEH-P5650MP installed at My Toyota Corolla 1993.

    Unfortunately, I couldn’t hear anything because the head do not change to “CD listening” when I push the power. It acts as I haven’t a cd charger in the car. I think I should connect other pin to say to the head to listen to the cdcharger input.
    Can anybody help me?…. I am very eager to connect my Ipod Mini 4Gb to the car Audio, because in my country, Indonesia, South East Asia, the Pioneer IP-BUS to RCA Aux-Input connector was very-very-expensive??…

    I amvery appreciate your reply to my email: aribowo@mtp.co.id.

    Thank you very muhc,
    M.S.Aribowo
    JAKARTA – Indonesia, the greatest archipelago, and Bali is one of our thousands islands.

  32. M.s.aribowo says:

    Like Marcio from Brazil, I also did the changes to connect my iPod to a Pioneer head with cd charger like this guy have done: http://www.gutterslide.com/ip-bus_hack

    My Car Audio-Stereo head type is Pioneer DEH-P56560MP.

    Unfortunately, I couldn’t hear anything because the head do not change to “CD listening” when I push the power. It acts as I haven’t a cd charger in the car. I think I should connect other pin to say to the head to listen to the cdcharger input.
    Can anybody help me?…I am very eager to connect my Ipod to the Pioneer DEH-P56560MP, with minijack and RCA.

    Thank you, please reply to me at aribowo@mtp.co.id.

    M.S.Aribowo,
    JAKARTA-Indonesia
    South East Asia

  33. M.s.aribowo says:

    I got an answer why my DEH-P5650MP IP-BUS convert to RCA does not work??…

    Some body told me, because my Pioneer Head-Unit was “initially” setup the AUX menu was OFF…

    To turn the AUX to ON, during the power OFF, press FUNCTION-Button until the AUX menu appear, and then set the AUX to ON. Thats all, and everything work perfectly…

    M.S.Aribowo

  34. Corey says:

    Does anyone know how to turn on the AUX input for an Alpine head unit? Specifically the CDM-7861??

    I looked all over the web and in the owners manual (yes, I actually found it!) and I can’t seem to find the option.

    When I hold down the FUNCTION button, all I get is “1 SUBW ON”. I assume the next option on this menu would be “2 AUX OFF”, but I can’t find the right button to make the menu advance.

    Any suggestions?

  35. Corey says:

    Does anyone know how to turn on the AUX input for an Alpine head unit? Specifically the CDM-7861??

    I looked all over the web and in the owners manual (yes, I actually found it!) and I can’t seem to find the option.

    When I hold down the FUNCTION button, all I get is “1 SUBW ON”. I assume the next option on this menu would be “2 AUX OFF”, but I can’t find the right button to make the menu advance.

    Any suggestions?

  36. Corey says:

    Sorry.. I failed to mention that this was for an Alpine HU (CDM-7861).

  37. Craig says:

    I have the same HU as you Corey, and the same problem too. Any ideas, or have you figured it out?

  38. JOhn says:

    I want to hook my ipod to my panasonic headset(they dont make anything), it has a aux input but only for a cd changer or XM radio hookup, I havent been able to find anything to be able to connect it yet if someone could please post something I would love it…or email me bigjohn21786@yahoo.com

  39. Donnie brasco says:

    For those who are attempting to hook this up t o Toyota Headunits or other stock stereos, you might find these links helpful:

    http://www.discountcarstereo.com/detail.aspx?ID=848

    http://www.discountcarstereo.com/detail.aspx?ID=749

  40. jeff says:

    hey i got a panasonic player w/ cd charger input in there, i’ve plugged my ipod in but could get anything, the cd charger option doesnt show up anyone got an idea why? and how i could fix this, thanks,

    jeff
    jf.diehard@gmail.com

  41. gutterslide says:

    i updated my DIY to include these instructions for enabling AUX on a Pioneer headunit.

    “In order to listen to external devices attached to this connector, you must first enable the “AUX” option on the headunit. consult the manual for your unit for details (Pioneer online manuals – http://www.pioneerelectronics.com/pna/product/manual/0,,2076_4277,00.html). on my headunit, i have to turn the unit off, press and hold the function (F) button for 3 seconds, use the up or down arrows to navigate to the AUX on/off option, select “ON”, then turn the unit on again. then when i press Source on the headunit, AUX will be one of the options.”

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  43. joe says:

    I had a question, I have a 2004 Ford Mustang, V-6 with the Mach 1000 system. It has an indash 6 disc cd changer. Okay I want to add an AUX input to it to hook up my mp3 player. The factory head unit has a “cd/aux” button and a “sat” button. I was woundering if I could use one of these but I cannot find nothing on the ciruit board to help me out. Thanks

  44. chris says:

    Hi, thanks for the great site! I have a Sony Xplod CDX-MP40 car stereo. I was happy to see that it has RCA inputs on the back–a left + right. Unfortunately, when I plugged in my iPod via RCA cables, no sound comes out…because apparently there’s no way on the car stereo to switch to AUX. This sucks–I called Sony + they say I have to buy some $150 “switch” to go between the car stereo + the iPod or CD changer (I guess the inputs can be used for a CD changer, which I don’t have). There has to be a way around this! I thought that was the whole point of having RCA inputs on the back of a stereo! Anyone with any ideas, I’d really appreciate it. Thanks.

  45. jorwex says:

    chris, # 93

    http://www.docs.sony.com/release/CDXMP40.PDF

    theres the manual for your player. pg 24 speaks of inputs, but i think the ones you speak of are outputs for an amp or something:

    Inputs
    Telephone ATT control terminal
    Remote controller input terminal
    BUS control input terminal
    BUS audio input terminal
    Antenna input terminal

    and on pg 11, it talks about memorystick/minidisc/cd changer sources, so you might be able to hijack one of those lines and trick it somehow.

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  48. Jerrin says:

    I have a Kenwood KDC222 head unit in my ’97 Mitsubishi Galant. It has no aux and the only rca ports on the back are outs. Is their any way to hardwire into the stereo for my ipod? If not, is their a way to build my own fm modulator?

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