Friday, March 04, 2005

When nerds have old cars and new gadgets

When I got my drivers license my grandfather gave me a wonderful gift.

A 1977 Thunderbird! It was (and is( a beautiful car (almost like the one in the picture) and the big V-8 it made it loads of fun.

There was only one little problem with driving the car. There were only three ways to listen to music. Listen to AM/FM static, play some worn out 8-track cassettes, or sing.

Now an enterprising bright mettlesome young fellow like myself just could not be satisfied with such a situation. After all I had CDs I wanted to listen to.

Now I already had a portable CD player and an adapter that that let me plug it into a cassette deck, so I figured it must have been possible to make something similar for an 8-track player.

Armed no real knowledge of how an 8-track operated, I cut up an old cassette, disassembled a junk stereo, and then mounted the magnetic head from the stereo into the cassette. I did a little soldering and had it connected to my portable CD player. I plugged my converter into the car's 8-track player, said a little prayer, and hit the play button. To my astonishment relief IT ACTUALLY WORKED.

Ever since, I've been patting myself on the back for my ingenuity. That is until now. Somebody has actually invented (and marketed) an even nerdier solution to stereo retrofitting problems. It doesn't deal with the old 8-track players, but it makes up for it in complexity.

Behold the Bluetooth enabled stereo cassette!

That's right! No longer must you use those ugly old fashioned wires to play mp3s on your cassette deck! Use wireless technology to beam the music directly to this little tape and into your stereo. Never mind that it's possible to splice an MP3 player into the stereo system in less time than it took to read this blog; this little gadget is the ultimate in nerdy ways to retrofit your car's old stereo!

I guess this means I'll have to come up with an even more ridiculous method of connecting old stereo equipment to new. WAIT! I've got it. I'll buy one of these gadgets and use it to build an adapter to an 8-track. No, even better! I'll adapt it to a 33rpm record player. Maybe even a wind-up Victrola!! Now let me see, if I connect the output to a small speaker clamped to the tone head....


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