# Car stereo input.

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#### ShortCircuit

##### New Member
I gotta stock Delco cassette head unit (1997 model). I want to put a 3.5mm banana jack in it for use with Ipod.mp3,etc...) and here is my question. I've isolated to left and right positive leads to splice the jack into, but what about the left and right negative leads? Can I solder the positive leads to the banana jack and ground the negative leads on the chassis somewhere or is that a no-no?

Short

#### MikeMl

##### Well-Known Member
Sounds like you are trying to connect to just one end of a bridged amp, not a good idea. Go back to the main volume control, and tap in there with a DPDT toggle switch; that will approximate the RCA Line IN jacks on a modern car receiver.

btw, what you are trying to add is not a banana jack, it should be a 1/8 stereo jack.

#### Torben

##### Well-Known Member
My first question is: why use a banana jack and not a regular 3.5mm stereo phone jack? Or is that what you meant?

I'm not an expert on this but if I were doing it I'd use a 3.5mm stereo phone jack, and connect the left and right signal lines as you described. The common line from the jack I would connect to the circuit board's 0V line, which you can easily find using a multimeter.

Even easier (but less cool, of course) would be to use something like this: Belkin : Cassette Adapter for iPod

Good luck!

Torben

[Edit: I assumed you had located the lines from the cassette head to the internal amp but as MikeMl noted you might be going into the wrong spot. Make sure first. ]

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#### tblo163

##### New Member
I posted full instructions on how to play back MP3 on a cassette player.it is called
"POOR MANS MP3 PLAYER" You can play back your mp3, by simply splicing the 3 wires into the existing RED,WHITE & BLACK wires from the pick-up head.You then need to strip out all of the tape from a cassette,to use as a switch,this will turn on the tape player function and turn off the radio tuner.The sound quallity is excellent,you can control the functions from your HU,The original tape function is not compromised,you simply insert a cassette,as usual.

Whats a cassete?

#### bigkim100

##### Banned
Oh I am... I am...
I am "down" on all of todays youth "jive talkin'"
yo yo yo...and 10--4 good buddy

#### audioguru

##### Well-Known Member
Philips invented the Compact Cassette in 1963.
My 1975 car had a cassette player/recorder.
My 1997 car had a CD player because cassettes were obsolete then.
My 2005 car has a CD/MP3 player.

#### Hero999

##### Banned
The good thing about cassettes was you could record them, long before recordable CDs came out.

Now MP3 is king of the formats and I don't see how it can be beaten.

#### tblo163

##### New Member
You seem to have attracted some pretty negative responses to your thread,when all you asked was how to play MP3s through a cassette player.Since mine was the only
positive reply,I suggest you ignore the rest and connect it the way I described,I can GUARANTEE it will work,we all know that cd/players & expensive AVC LAN DATA sets are available,but you've got to make the best of what you've got.So enjoy the super sound quality of playing your MP3 via your HU. Good luck.

#### tblo163

##### New Member
I used a record player in 1957,it was a nice little unit,mounted under the dash of my 1956 Citroen DS19.It had a built in shock absorbing system,so that the 45s didn't "jump" when driving on the cobbled roads.(out of date) maybe, but I wish I still had it.

#### HarveyH42

My Ford Explorer has one messed up stereo. Best I could get, after spending a long time figuring out how to get it out of the dash, without damage, was AM and cassette. The cassette soon ate one of my favorite tapes, and refused to spit out the remains. Yanked it out with pliers, and now use a cassette adapter and an MP3 player, which also has FM radio. Adapter cost $3.99... #### audioguru ##### Well-Known Member Most Helpful Member You seem to have attracted some pretty negative responses to your thread,when all you asked was how to play MP3s through a cassette player.Since mine was the only positive reply,I suggest you ignore the rest and connect it the way I described,I can GUARANTEE it will work,we all know that cd/players & expensive AVC LAN DATA sets are available,but you've got to make the best of what you've got.So enjoy the super sound quality of playing your MP3 via your HU. Good luck. It won't work. The pickup head of a cassette player is heavily equalized and has a very low level. Connecting an MP3 player to the preamp of a tape head will result in extreme distortion because of the overload and the boosted low frequencies. #### bigkim100 ##### Banned You seem to have attracted some pretty negative responses to your thread,when all you asked was how to play MP3s through a cassette player.Since mine was the only positive reply,I suggest you ignore the rest and connect it the way I described,I can GUARANTEE it will work Man...we are a bit sensitive arnt we..so far all of the postings have been quite positive, and useful, except mine (Im trying to get my reputation down to saying "Absolute Idiot"...but thats another story)...and if you had even the slightest sense of humour you would realise that my posting simply made fun of the fact that there are probibly some people here that wouldnt know what a casette is if you placed it in their hand. The other day my 11 year old found a computer discette, and couldnt figure out what the hell it was. I know what a casstte is, I predate them...hell I predate color Tv. (being 20 years my senior...you may even predate Tv itself!) For a guy hat has a devil as his avatar, you better loosen up, not everyone will always agree with what you say, and others may just want to add interesting quirky info like AudioGuru did, with his evolution and dates of car stereo systems. Relax son...its only electronics. Last edited: #### Mr RB ##### Well-Known Member It won't work. The pickup head of a cassette player is heavily equalized and has a very low level. Connecting an MP3 player to the preamp of a tape head will result in extreme distortion because of the overload and the boosted low frequencies. So true. And the best place to tap into the cassette player is probably easier anyway, on the stereo volume control. This will have obvious grounds, obvious right/left signal and is usually very close to line level as it is after the head preamp. #### tcmtech ##### Banned Most Helpful Member Hehehe Ahhahaha Cassettes. I dropped those in my mid teens about 18 years ago! I did the hack the car radio thing back then to add an external power source and RCA jacks to my aftermarket cassette player in my high school car. I tapped into the feed lines that send the signal to the volume control. That way I had power and direct line feeds for my portable CD player. I diverted the lines coming in to the volume control to a DPDT switch that flipped the volume control input from the internal source to the external inputs. Signal attenuators are needed to bring the headphone multi volt signal down to the few hundred millivolt audio input level though. Could just by a MP3 compatible head unit on line. They are under$100 for good used units and have far far better sound quality and functions to work with! Many even have auxiliary inputs just for external sources!

By the way Audioguru's first car used a horse and had vacuum tubes in his radio. The change from round wax cylinder records to flat disk was still going on in is teens!

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#### audioguru

##### Well-Known Member
By the way Audioguru's first car used a horse and had vacuum tubes in his radio. The change from round wax cylinder records to flat disk was still going on in is teens!
My first car didn't have a radio. It had a 40 horsepower gasoline engine and my transistor portable radio frequently played in it.

My first job was with Philips making car radios when they invented the Compact Cassette and quickly replaced the 8-track tape players with it.

#### Hero999

##### Banned
It won't work.
The pickup head of a cassette player is heavily equalized and has a very low level.
Connecting an MP3 player to the preamp of a tape head will result in extreme distortion because of the overload and the boosted low frequencies.
I've done it before.

You can buy dummy cassettes with a headphone jack on a wire.

It works a treat, the sound quality isn't excellent but it's much better than a cassette.

#### Torben

##### Well-Known Member
I've done it before.

You can buy dummy cassettes with a headphone jack on a wire.

It works a treat, the sound quality isn't excellent but it's much better than a cassette.
Yeah, but that's not the same thing as hooking the MP3 player's headphone output directly to the head preamp input. I posted a link to these things in my first post in this thread. For some reason that link calls the device an "innovation", which is pretty breathless given that they've been around since at least the 1980s.

Torben

#### tcmtech

##### Banned
My first car didn't have a radio. It had a 40 horsepower gasoline engine and my transistor portable radio frequently played in it.

My first job was with Philips making car radios when they invented the Compact Cassette and quickly replaced the 8-track tape players with it.
Just a friendly little tease AG, just wanted to see if that heart rebuild was holding up!

SO you seriously did some of the philips cassette development stuff? Interesting!

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