Long Road Trip with a Bluetooth speaker

Long Road Trip with a Bluetooth speaker

Postby bradaskins [OP] » August 7th 2020, 5:47pm

I'm going on a really long road in a couple of weeks. My Astro has the original stereo and to be honest it sucks. I get very few stations and I drive in silence a lot.

I was wondering if anyone travels with a portable Bluetooth speaker in their van. I'd like to stream Sirius radio from my phone.
I'd like to know if this set up works for others and what kind of speaker do you use?
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Re: Long Road Trip with a Bluetooth speaker

Postby tonydobbs » August 7th 2020, 5:55pm

Have you considered getting a Bluetooth adapter for your stock stereo? The portable Bluetooth speaker would work fine, but it seems less convenient.
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Re: Long Road Trip Bluetooth speaker

Postby augidogaugidog is online! » August 7th 2020, 5:56pm

my radio was wonky, too. I took advantage of the existing rear speakers, and using an existing accessory power switch and wire, I installed a mini Bluetooth amplifier. I use my tablet for music and gps, it works and sounds great.

$18 and about an hour.

https://www.astrosafari.com/viewtopic.p ... 0#p1549068
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Re: Long Road Trip with a Bluetooth speaker

Postby MmusicmanMmusicman is online! » August 7th 2020, 6:02pm

I bought a Bluetooth FM transmitter to work with my stock stereo.
The sound quality (of this particular model) is FANTASTIC!

I used to do pro-sound and find this is a simple but great compromise.
But best results require your phone's output at full volume, and bluetooth transmitter also set at full volume. It will actually sound BETTER than FM radio.

This particular unit is quite powerful too.
You can pick it up in a nearby vehicle too.

I paid less than $20 for it.. and I absolutely LOVE it!
(Amazon or Ebay)
I've been using it daily for the past year now.
Much better than the bluetooth speaker I was toting around.. and you can't beat the convenience and price! Also works a hands-free device for your phone... plays usb sticks, micro-SD, has display and charging ports.

But it won't be of any use if your car radio doesn't work. Poor reception (bad antenna) however, may not be an issue since it transmits directly to radio less than a foot away.

NULAXY NX09, NX12, (any model in this particular brand.. excellent reviews)

Nulaxy NX12 Bluetooth FM Transmitter250.jpg
Nulaxy NX12 Bluetooth FM Transmitter250.jpg (23.73 KiB) Viewed 535 times


NO WIRES OR CHARGING CABLES EITHER!

I live in the city. Here's a cute video example I made showing the Nulaxy FM transmitter has NO problem stepping on 100,000 watt local stations that are powerful and close. It is typically intended to be set on any blank station.

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Re: Long Road Trip with a Bluetooth speaker

Postby bradaskins [OP] » August 7th 2020, 7:06pm

I didn't even know those things existed.
Thanks, everybody for your input.
Nulaxy Bluetooth FM Transmitter ordered it'll be here tomorrow!
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Re: Long Road Trip with a Bluetooth speaker

Postby Leeann_93 » August 7th 2020, 10:50pm

Are you sure your antenna is connected and the wire's not broken somewhere? My stock radio gets local and not-quite-so-local stations just fine. I just get ticked off at commercials and repetition.

I have an aux box connected to the remote CD port on a stock cassette radio, so I have a Sirius plug-n-play radio directly connected. And it's pretty good, actually. If the aux box fails, I'll get a CarPlay-compatible headunit, but mine works great for the moment. I have upgraded the front speakers - slightly - with a cheap pair of Sound Ordnance from Crutchfield (one was blown when I bought the van) and I have a pair of Alpines waiting to go into the rear doors, along with a pair of Pioneers for the rear panels. My front door tweeters are fine.
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Re: Long Road Trip with a Bluetooth speaker

Postby dcsleeper » August 7th 2020, 11:10pm

TNKS mmusicman. I had tried those things before, but got crappy ones. Gonna order of those now!
TNKS Leeann, gonna do an aux in thru a lower slave cassette deck I bought, along with a slave cable and a cd head unit for the cargo van. I have sat radio too.
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Re: Long Road Trip with a Bluetooth speaker

Postby Leeann_93 » August 7th 2020, 11:13pm

You'll have to use a cassette adapter with the slave cassette. If you have the cassette headunit, you plug the aux box into the port that the slave cd plugs into. Or Will has a tute on how to make an aux input on a CD headunit.

My original install is in post 2 on this page:
https://www.astrosafari.com/viewtopic.p ... &start=180

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Re: Long Road Trip with a Bluetooth speaker

Postby dcsleeper » August 7th 2020, 11:19pm

I'm putting a mini 3.5mm jack in it. Been researching it for days. I've done other brands head units and knew them well, but gm is new to me.
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Re: Long Road Trip with a Bluetooth speaker

Postby MmusicmanMmusicman is online! » August 7th 2020, 11:58pm

bradaskins wrote:Nulaxy Bluetooth FM Transmitter ordered it'll be here tomorrow!

I bought several models.. one on a goose-neck with fancy display, and a simple one like I showed in the photo.
The goose-neck model is cool.. but I prefer the simple one. Set it and forget it... out of the way.

By the way.. some models keep partially working, even when you switch them off.
I wound up rewiring my cig lighter plug to the key to fully turn it off.

Like I said, be sure your phone music volume is at max, and transmitter volume at max.
Then adjust volume on stereo like normal.

Also, realize when your phone rings, it will answer though the van speakers, and your voice is picked up through a mic on the unit. If you forget it's connected and your stereo volume is off.. you'll have dead air. You can either unplug it, turn it off, or turn off blue-tooth on phone if you want to talk directly into your phone. It definitely ups the technical game!

Several of my friends have bought them, and they love them too.

Good luck.. hope it works as well for you as it does for me.
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Re: Long Road Trip with a Bluetooth speaker

Postby AstroOafAdventurerAstroOafAdventurer is online! » August 8th 2020, 12:15am

I had an Isuzu Trooper a couple years back and used a Logitech BT speaker set on the dash. It worked fairly well, although I connected with an 1/8" audio cable. I was going to buy another one and use a splitter and have two going on the dash but the trans crapped out.
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Re: Long Road Trip with a Bluetooth speaker

Postby bradaskins [OP] » August 8th 2020, 11:13pm

Boom! It came today. Works just how I'd hoped.

Thanks for the great suggestion.

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Re: Long Road Trip with a Bluetooth speaker

Postby augidogaugidog is online! » August 9th 2020, 1:06am

so, you meant your stereo is alright, but being stuck with the radio sucks, I see now. that's a sweet solution.

that little amplifier I used let me salvage what was working and not care about what wasn't, a different situation altogether, same inexpensive results. btw, I have a 3a not XL, nice phone imo.
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Re: Long Road Trip with a Bluetooth speaker

Postby GodIsBed » August 9th 2020, 2:22am

I recently bought a cassette bluetooth adaptor off amazon (https://smile.amazon.com/gp/product/B07 ... UTF8&psc=1) and it works ok, but the balance is way off. The FM transmitter option was not considered because of a transmitter I used over 15 years ago- so I guess I'll give one of those Nulaxy untis a shot.
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Re: Long Road Trip with a Bluetooth speaker

Postby chevymaher » August 10th 2020, 1:06am

Head on the tape deck is out of adjustment.
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Re: Long Road Trip with a Bluetooth speaker

Postby bradaskins [OP] » August 10th 2020, 2:58pm

chevymaher wrote:Head on the tape deck is out of adjustment.


The previous owner did some bad stuff. The stereo out of adjustment is small compared to other things I've fixed.
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Re: Long Road Trip with a Bluetooth speaker

Postby augidogaugidog is online! » August 10th 2020, 3:43pm

speaking for myself, I'd happily pay more for a used van that didn't have a PO :rofl:
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Re: Long Road Trip with a Bluetooth speaker

Postby dcsleeper » September 1st 2020, 9:38pm

Mmusicman wrote:I bought a Bluetooth FM transmitter to work with my stock stereo.
The sound quality (of this particular model) is FANTASTIC!

This particular unit is quite powerful too.
You can pick it up in a nearby vehicle too.

I paid less than $20 for it.. and I absolutely LOVE it!
(Amazon or Ebay)
you can't beat the convenience and price! Also works a hands-free device for your phone... plays usb sticks, micro-SD, has display and charging ports.

NULAXY NX12, (any model in this particular brand.. excellent reviews)

Nulaxy NX12 Bluetooth FM Transmitter250.jpg




MANY thanks!
I've tried others before and they sucked.
These do not!
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Re: Long Road Trip with a Bluetooth speaker

Postby MmusicmanMmusicman is online! » September 2nd 2020, 12:48am

dcsleeper wrote:MANY thanks!
I've tried others before and they sucked.
These do not!

:thumbup:
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Re: Long Road Trip with a Bluetooth speaker

Postby TowVan » September 2nd 2020, 3:28am

Thanks for that part number and recommendation, MMM! Just what my wife's Toyota has been needing.
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