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Installing a after market Cassette Player

Discussion in 'Gen II Prius Audio and Electronics' started by Riffraft, Feb 6, 2004.

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  1. Riffraft

    Riffraft New Member

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    Howdy all:

    I got my Prius with option package 4 so it didn't include a cassette player. I have a long commute so I listen to books on tape (unfortunately, there just isn't nearly as many books available at this point on CD). I called a couple of dealerships and one told me that it would cost $1,100.00 to have the 6/CD changer compo Cassette system that comes with the higher option packages installed and the other one told me that the 6/CD Changer Cassette player combo isn't even available anymore. I know there is a slot under the current stereo system where I might put in a after market cassette player, but I am very leery of having anyone but a certified mechanic install something that is obviously going to involve getting inside the front console and messing with the wiring. Does anyone have any ideas on how I might go about getting a cassette player installed without having to pay $1,100.00? Any ideas would be greatly appreciated.
  2. HTMLSpinnr

    HTMLSpinnr Moderator Staff Member

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    You'd be better of capturing the books on tape to your PC or CD-recorder, and burning it to CD. In the end, the recorder or equipment plus cost of blanks would be far less than the $1100 quoted.

    Or, you could attempt to rig a walkman like device to the CoastalTech project in the works.

    -Rick
  3. Danny

    Danny Admin/Founder Staff Member

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    Check out your local library - I was amazed at how many books on CD my library has now. Just a thought.

    Otherwise I agree with Rick - rig something to CoastalDave's aftermarket solution. Or try an FM modulator with a Walkman.
  4. cybele

    cybele New Member

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    It's also possible to buy many books as MP3 files from Audible.com.

    Once you have it on MP3 you can burn it (backwards rip?) to a CD in CD format and be able to listen to it on a normal CD player.
  5. Riffraft

    Riffraft New Member

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    Thank you all for the suggestions. I went ahead and got a Panasonic RQ-A220 Cassette Player/Recorder. It's small enough to fit in the Storage compartment, but the sound quality isn't quite what I wanted. I was hoping for something small with decent sound quality (wanted my cake and eat it to :). The one thing that I wanted to avoid was having a boom box in the car all the time :).

    Cybele I usually don't buy my audio books. I get them from the Library and the ones here in Orange County, CA still have just a small selection on CD (they have a huge selection on Cassette though). I only listen to unabridged Audio books and they usually average from 10 to 16 cassettes. I wish the Prius CD Player played MP3's then I could do what htmlspinnr suggested and covert the cassettes to MP3 CD's since that would only take a few CD's. Converting 10 to 16 tapes every time just isn't worth the time, effort, and expense since legally I can't keep the CD's after I return the audio book to the library.
  6. cybele

    cybele New Member

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    Good to know. I've never thought of getting books on audio from the library.

    Someone should come up with Netflix for books on CD though ... that'd be pretty sweet.
  7. Riffraft

    Riffraft New Member

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    cybele I agree, currently the only options for renting audio books that I know of are places like Books on Tape, and Blackstone audio and they charge on average of $20.00 per rental. That is what forced me to look else where for my auido books. I go through about a book a week and that can get real expensive real fast.
  8. pkjohna

    pkjohna Member

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    Riffraft,

    If you're using a portable portable player you might try Audible.com as a source of audio books. Audible gives you the choice of burning to Cd's (once I tweaked the settings to take advantage of higher burn speeds it doesn't take that long) or transferring to a portable mp3 player. I got spoiled with my previous car where I had a Kenwood Music Keg installed which satisfied both my thirst for music and was compatible with Audible books. In the Prius I'm using CD's until Coastal Dave finishes his A/V kit for the 04 but you could also try an FM Modulator with the portable. Unfortunately, in the Wash DC area the FM band is to cluttered to get good results from the modulator unless you remove the antenna first so I'm stuck with burning CD's until Dave comes through.
  9. JeffG

    JeffG New Member

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    Hastings Entertainment offers books on CD rentals. We have one of those near us. It's a chain but I don't know how wide they go. I believe they are only in smaller markets that the BIG bookstore chains overlook.
  10. stuhillman2004

    stuhillman2004 New Member

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    There is a $20 gizmo available at computer stores. A device similar to any cigarette lighter adaptor plugs in to the 12V outlet. Surprise - it has a USB port on the end for power. Plug the device into the USB port and the other end into the audio out miniplug on any player (computer, MP3, cassette etc.) and you can get the sound by tuning your FM radio to 88.1MHz, 88.3MHZ etc. There is a tiny (really tiny) dip switch on the gizmo to change the FM channel. 88.3 works best here in the DC area.
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