TomTom FM Transmitter Mount
The FCC paperwork is going though the channels and it looks like the TomTom FM Transmitter Mount will be available soon. TomTom’s website suggests it will become available in the next couple of months. So why would you want one? Update: The transmitter is available now.
Many GPS devices include the ability to play MP3 music files from the GPS. The problem is that the speaker quality in most GPS devices isn’t really designed for high volume playback while traveling at 70 mph. I’ve tried the MP3 player in GPS devices from Garmin, Magellan, TomTom, Lowrance, Mio, WorldNav, and others yet I’ve never found one where the sound quality was great.
An FM transmitter can get over this problem by acting as a tiny FM radio station where you broadcast your music from the GPS to your car stereo. You set the FM frequency on the device and then tune your car stereo into that channel.
The success of these devices is hit or miss depending on a few factors.
- In some areas there are so many radio stations that finding a “free” frequency to broadcast over can be challenging.
- The antenna design in some cars is so far away from the transmitter that the signal is wak.
- Some designs just don’t seem to have a powerful transmitter itself. Case in point the numerous amount of complaints I’ve received about the FM transmitter in some of the Nuvis.
The TomTom FM Transmitter will work with both the 510 and 910 models. In addition to MP3 music files, calls connected to a Bluetooth phone can be routed to the car stereo as well as any music from an iPod if connected to the GPS with the TomTom iPod connectivity kit. Voice directions from the GO are also sent to the car stereo.
The transmitter is available now for about $50.