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Thread: Car Dock Problems-Fixes/Alternatives?

  1. Master Droid
    JOSHSKORN's Avatar
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    #1

    Car Dock Problems-Fixes/Alternatives?

    I bought my MAXX in late May and also got the Car Dock with rapid vehicle charger, all from Amazon. I was happy. A month or so later, I noticed the car dock shorting out a little bit. The roads where I live are pretty smooth, but now, if I hit even the tiniest bump, the sound will cut out. That said, this device is useless to me now.

    Basically I have a 2004 minivan. There's no Aux port, just a CD and tape player, so I am forced to use a tape deck adapter. I've "stuck" my car dock on the top of my windshield and I've placed the cord such that it hangs behind the rearview mirror, then splits to the tape deck adapter, and then the cigarette lighter to charge. When the audio cuts out, if I barely move the part of the wire hanging in between the car dock and the rearview mirror, the sound comes back, until I hit another tiny bump.

    I don't know exactly where the "short" is, if it's the connector or if it's the wire, itself. I've unplugged it and replugged it back in, with no different results. Is there a way of determining the culprit, here?

    I've read a similar thread, maybe in this forum that the car dock does degrade after a while. I'm not sure if it's the quality of the materials or the sunlight killing it over time.

    I mainly use my car dock (well...when it actually was working correctly) to read my texts to me, listen to Pandora and talk "hands-free" on my phone. I would hear the other person talking through my minivan's speakers if I tapped on speaker phone button. When I plug my phone into my car dock, (my app of choice) Car Dock Ultra automatically loads.

    Is there another solution which might be a little bit more "full-proof" that allows me to do what I want to do? I read somewhere that there are Bluetooth to Auxiliary devices, but I don't know if they would transmit everything needed. Obviously Bluetooth can't charge the phone, but that's just fine, because we all know how good the MAXX's battery is.

    Anyone else with a similar experience? Is there a better quality dock to use for both audio and charging? Should I just forget about charging and get the aforementioned Bluetooth device to suit my audio needs?
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  3. Master Droid
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    #2
    Sorry, don't mean to "bump" my own thread but I haven't seen any replies.

    I'm willing to try this, though...

    Do they sell any replacement cords? I can't seem to find any. Again, I don't know where the short is, if it's in the wire or if it's on the connector.
  4. Master Droid
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    #3
    Lets see if I can help.

    I have the same car dock and purchased mine off amazon as well. IMHO, it is of good quality and hasn't given me any problems after several months of use. If you think it may be defective, I would check with Amazon about an exchange.

    The limiting factor of your setup is probably the link between the tape adapter and the vintage 2004 OEM stereo. I've used tape adapters before and they are very finicky. If the allignment between the head in the adapter and the head in the radio is anything less than optimum, you'll get problems. In the few that I've owned, the cords on them have been terrible as well, so that may be where some of your problem is coming from.

    As far as bluetooth adapters for connecting to your current OEM radio, I doubt there are any that will work - I did a quick search or crutchfield and Amazon and didn't find anything useful. Not knowing the one you mentioned, but I'm guessing that other than another tape input, it would require some other connection or wiring.
    If your OEM radio has input capability on the back side of it, that may be an option. Not knowing which one you have, I can't give you more info on it. I did use that as an option though on my OEM radio on a Honda Accord and it worked quite well.

    If you plan on keeping the van for a while and are up to the task, you may want to consider upgrading to a newer stereo. Many new and not so expensive units have a direct "line in" plug for accepting input from many types of media players. The one I have does and it works great with my dock. My unit also has an option for a bluetooth module that links my phone to it and I think it may also work for streaming audio. I didn't purchase the module as I'm happy just plugging the cable from my dock in.

    Hope that helps some.

    David
  5. Master Droid
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    #4
    Quote Originally Posted by YellowJacket View Post
    I have the same car dock and purchased mine off amazon as well. IMHO, it is of good quality and hasn't given me any problems after several months of use. If you think it may be defective, I would check with Amazon about an exchange.

    The limiting factor of your setup is probably the link between the tape adapter and the vintage 2004 OEM stereo. I've used tape adapters before and they are very finicky. If the allignment between the head in the adapter and the head in the radio is anything less than optimum, you'll get problems. In the few that I've owned, the cords on them have been terrible as well, so that may be where some of your problem is coming from.
    Thanks David. I highly doubt it's my tape deck adapter causing the problem. I'm positive it's the cable connecting to the car dock. I'll look into the warranty on it but I think it's 30 days. I'm not sure. I threw away the original box, unfortunately.
  6. Master Droid
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    #5
    If you can, try it on another car that takes a line-in input. Or for that matter another tape deck.

    David
  7. Master Droid
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    #6
    Quote Originally Posted by YellowJacket View Post
    If you can, try it on another car that takes a line-in input. Or for that matter another tape deck.

    David
    David, I lightly move the main wire which is suspended between my rear view mirror and connected directly into the car dock, this is when I hear changes in the quality of the sound. The connection to the tape deck adapter is nowhere near the section that I'm tapping and getting the "short". That said, I am 110% confident that the fault is NOT of the tape deck adapter. Thanks for your input, though.

    I'm going to look into a refund or exchange, if that's possible.

    Edit: Amazon's policy is 30 days, which for me was June 26, 2012. I've sent an E-mail to Motorola. Probably won't do any good, who knows.
    Last edited by JOSHSKORN; 08-02-2012 at 11:36 PM.
  8. Master Droid
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    #7
    Felt I needed to *bump* this.

    I contacted Motorola via E-mail. According to them, as long as the unit was purchased in the same year, they will send me a new one. I have to call their customer support and give them my credit card information. I have 30 days to return the old unit, otherwise they will charge me for another unit.

    I don't know how this will work, though with Amazon purchases, versus purchases directly from Motorola or Verizon. I did find that I can reprint my invoice on Amazon. I guess I'll find out if that is sufficient.

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