In 2012, NXP Semiconductor released the SAF775x chip that was the first multi-tuner RFCMOS (radio frequency complementary metal–oxide–semiconductor) single chip embedded with AM, FM and DAB tuners. That story for non-techies is that it could do with one chip what had been previously been done with two, and it also allowed customers - in this case carmakers - "to program their own features, or to run those of third-party software vendors."
At the 2011 New York Auto Show we experienced the 400-watt, nine-speaker Fender premium audio system in the Volkswagen Passat, Jetta GLI and Beetle, the three models in which it will be offered. When VW announced the partnership last December, the company said "Volkswagen and Fender put the concert in the car." That wasn't just a reference to getting good sounds in your ride, it was also a clue to how you'd get that sound. But before we even sat down in the Passat for a listen, our first questio
According to CE Outlook, the price of car stereo components may be on the rise. The report says that even before Japan suffered its earthquake, tsunami and nuclear disasters, manufacturers responsible for automotive audio equipment were already beginning to increase MSRPs. The main source of that surge came from steeper prices for metals like aluminum and copper, which are used in heat sinks and connectors. Rockford Fosgate and JL Audio both increased their prices by March 1 of this year after t
If you're buying an A8 this year, prepare to spend a lot of time getting to know your new MMI system. We have consistently thought that Audi's buttons-and-knob interface is the best, and it looks like they've put an entire NASA team on the job of making it better. A seven-inch TFT screen with 800x400 resolution is now controlled by an 8-position joystick. Moving from one screen to another is done via "elegant crossfades," which sounds a bit PowerPoint-ish, but we'll wait until we see it to judge
Scion has selected iBiquity Digital to provide HD Radio technology in some of its audio systems. Scion hasn't said how it plans to integrate iBiquity into Scions, or which cars will get the systems first, but the partnership marks another incursion of HD Radio into the mass market -- BMW, Ford and Jaguar already offer it, with Volvo opening the HD spigot next year. HD Radio offers stations the ability to transmit multiple programs over a single FM frequency with crystal clear reception -- and th
The great thing about vintage cars is, well, they're vintage cars. One of their drawbacks is vintage sound from vintage speakers and vintage playback capabilities. For those times when neither 8-tracks nor some gaudy modern stereo system will do, the Retro Sound Model One keeps things looking smartly classic.
In Part IV, the final installment in our CES Car Show, you get VW Beetles and a four-door GTI used as a guitar amp, a Roush Mustang, a mostly untouched (thank god!), bright red Lotus Exige and various other autos we saw around the show.
Mitsubishi Motors North America announced Monday that it will offer SIRIUS radio as a standard feature or factory option, starting with four models this fall, and expanding to the full Mitsubishi product line next year. All SIRIUS-equipped vehicles will include a pre-paid six month subscription.