Car Radios


I think this following article is quite relevant for this thread.


Yes I thought the article made some good points. However what was missing was some analysis of what has happened (if anything) to radio in countries where the car fleet is younger. For example the UK has a much younger average car age yet radio there is still thriving. The main impact for radio there seems to be the growing influence of Digital Radio. I think the article should have explored this more rather than being a bit doom and gloom based on some comparative graphs with TV and print.


I had planned to buy a new radio for my 2007 Corolla, however with Optus mobile data plans getting cheaper with more data included I decided to go onto a new post-paid plan and purchased a Bluetooth receiver from Jaycar that I have plugged into the line-in of my car radio. My radio listening in my car is now 99% streaming on my mobile phone to the Bluetooth into the radio. At home I have two digital radios and use them everyday.


Radio is only still thriving in the UK because the BBC has historically produced extremely high quality and popular programming owing to its high amount of public funding. That kind of competition also kicks the commercial broadcasters up the bum to produce good quality programming.

I mean, the BBC was the monopoly radio broadcaster until 1973, and commercial radio was heavily regulated to ensure quality after its introduction. The BBC also continues to allocate extremely high amounts of funding towards radio broadcasting.

Broadcasting in the UK, at least compared to Australia, continues to hold a much more prominent prominent role because of the BBC’s high amount of funding per capita. I think it’s about 1.5-2x as much per head of population compared to what the ABC gets.

The BBC’s radio budget alone is higher than the entire annual budget of the ABC!

Because the ABC doesn’t have as many resources at their disposal, they focus on the niches that aren’t filled by commercial broadcasting. As a result, the most popular programming (music) is usually accompanied by a high number of ads instead of the presenter being able to use the time between songs to present an entertaining show.

This is why people choose to stream their music here.


I definitely agree the quality of the BBC is a big part of the continued success of radio in the UK. It definitely has led to better commercial operators there as well. But I also think the higher penetration of Digital Radio in cars is also a factor and I think in time this will help radio in Australia too. I listen to DAB exclusively in the car for the music choice. In fact I dread going into the toll tunnels here in Brisbane because it’s literally the only time I ever have to tune to “regular” commercial stations on AM/FM. I also find I listen to a lot more radio at home In the background now that I’ve got DAB. I wouldn’t listen to commercial FM nowadays in a million years. I think DAB could also help the under funded ABC to provide better programming and push the commercial stations to do better.


My Toyota Yaris is 9 years old this year so I have an almost 10 year car like this article says. I hardly ever listen to radio in the car these days , I plug my iPhone into the aux socket to listen to my tunes.Some cars older than about 2007 don’t even have auxiliary sockets, I remember from when I was looking at cars before I purchased my Yaris.Next I’ll have to look for a Bluetooth transmitter that I can plug into the aux socket since my car doesn’t have Bluetooth as standard,too old😕I’ll have a look in a Jaycar store and maybe purchase one from there someone else from this forum has done


Why the Bluetooth receiver?

Is that because you might be upgrading your iPhone to one of the new ones that don’t have a headphone socket?

If so, I think you can still buy an adapter for the iPhone so you can still plug the 3.5mm audio cable from the phone to your AUX socket like you do now.


I use a auxiliary cord at the moment that I plug into aux socket in car ,having a Bluetooth receiver means I wouldn’t have to use cord to connect phone


That’s why I use Bluetooth … and also because I had been using an audio cable to plug into my phone but the constant plugging in and unplugging weakened the cable near the plug so I was replacing the cable every couple of months.


The car that I have this week for my road trip(until Friday )is a Mitsubishi ASX ,has a touch screen unit that displays radio information,current song,etc,Bluetooth,makes CD radio in my Toyota Yaris look so out of date😕


Does it have DAB? Just curious. I know you won’t have any digital stations in NQ.


Yes it does it’s a 2016 model


Do any of the electric cars on the market or coming on the market this year have digital radio? What ones don’t?


I’m not sure but I’d hope so! I understand AM radio doesn’t work in them and Tesla doesn’t come with AM


Back to driving my Toyota Yaris again. Would I be able to have a DAB unit installed in it ,can’t afford to right now anyway :confused:


This is the only single DIN (standard size) head unit I could find that has digital radio.

A cheaper option might be to use your smartphone to stream a digital radio station to your car’s radio, maybe using an FM transmitter,


I could try that ,thanks


I believe most Tesla’s do, but apparently it’s terrible. My understanding is they expect you to use Internet streaming via the SIM card you get with the vehicle.

I don’t think the Nissan Leaf’s have DAB, and apparently the BMW i3’s do.


Not in the Nissan Leaf? That surprises me a little as other Nissans have DAB.

And Tesla can jam their streaming. I’m just not into fiddling around with streaming in the car. I just want to get in and drive and use Radio presets. I know people will disagree but I just find all these phone syncs awkward and annoying. Not to mention chewing up data. I do stream radio on my phone at work when I’m at my desk (Absolute 80s and I sample some iHeart stations) but I’m just not onboard with it in the car.


And the sound quality via streaming just isn’t as good as FM radio.

And yes, much easier to change stations with DAB or FM too.