Having always loved my music, listening whilst on the move is a pleasure with my iPod. When driving though, it has been problematic. You can't really wear earphones whilst driving, so getting my iPod to play through my car stereo is the only option. I have used many products in the past, some of which charge my iPod whilst in the car, others that transmit the signal to my car stereo, and some that do both. With so much to choose from, when the Griffin RoadTrip popped through my letterbox, I knew it would be good, but why should you spend your money on this rather than another product? Let's take a look to find out.
Griffin Technology have made FM transmitters for the iPod for a very long time. This new version has been updated for the very latest models, including the 'touch' and the 'classic'. It is finished in a nice matte black colour, with very tactile buttons for operating the unit. The RoadTrip plugs directly into the 12V socket in your car and has a steel gooseneck attached (also powder coated in black). This can be bent to give you easy positioning of your iPod, which is very important, you don't have to overstretch to reach your iPod controls. The other end holds your iPod in place, the fit is good due to the accurately size dock inserts for your particular iPod model. Three control buttons are neatly laid out underneath, with a small display just above them.
New to this model is SmartScan. Previous models had you searching for an empty frequency and then dialing in the same on your FM transmitter. SmartScan searches for you and in my tests I found it very accurate. SmartSound is also very effective and when this feature is engaged, the sound seems to sound a lot clearer, albeit dropping down to a mono output. Another really nice feature for iPod touch users, is the ability to skip back and forth through your music tracks using the RoadTrip's buttons, rather than fiddling with the touch screen whilst driving.
Build quality is superb, as is the functionality of the new Griffin Technology RoadTrip. It is this quality, coupled with the design features, in a device that works superbly, that keeps Griffin ahead of the game. Yes, you can buy cheaper, but is you want something that works flawlessly, then get a RoadTrip (with SmartScan) and enjoy your iPod sounds whilst on the move.