Thanks to some birthday gift fundage from my parents (*Thanks Mom and Dad!*), I’ve been able to purchase a few useful gadgets for hooking up our iPod in various locations.
The first one is a device manufactured by [USA Spec](http://www.usaspec.com/), and sold at retailers such as [Circuit City](http://www.circuitcity.com/). The [DF-TOY](http://www.usaspec.com/aux2.htm) hooks up to the CD Changer input on our new Corolla’s factory stereo, and provides two sets of RCA auxiliary inputs. This allows us to output sound directly from the iPod into the car stereo, without the need for a radio transmitter (which provides mediocre quality at best) or a cassette adapter (which wouldn’t work in our car, since it doesn’t have a cassette deck).
Installation was a lot easier than I expected:
1. Remove the bezel from around the stereo. This is easily done by working a flathead screwdriver around the edges and popping it out.
2. Remove the four phillips screws holding the stereo in.
3. Plug in the adapter to the cd changer port.
4. Run the cable out from the back of the stereo, down to the opening just above the gas pedal.
5. Connect the cable to the input box.
6. Connect RCA cables from the device of your choice.
Voila! I have crystal clear sound, and I also have an extra set of RCA inputs should I ever want to have TWO auxiliary devices hooked up. Yikes! The only thing I ought to do is find a nice place to mount the input box, and clean up the cables. Right now it’s all sitting on the floor behind the gas pedal. I’ll take and post some photos if I have a chance.
The other gadget that I bought was an [Apple iPod Dock](http://store.apple.com/1-800-MY-APPLE/WebObjects/AppleStore?productLearnMore=M9868G/A). The iPod model I bought did not come with a dock, and I’ve gotten by just fine with the basic FireWire cable for a while. But at the Apple Store they had a bunch of “refreshed” docks on sale for 50% off the regular price, so I grabbed one of those, and it’s working great. Now our iPod has a nice little home to live in when it’s on the desk.
Here’s some [photos](http://gallery.prwdot.org/ipod_hookups) of the Dock and the aux input connectors.