For the second time in two years I’ve bought a GROM AUX-IN Adapter for the Emperor. “Buy why Brian?”, you’re asking yourself, “Doesn’t your aftermarket Jensen HU play an SD card?”
It did. Well, it probably still does, it just doesn’t do it in the dash of the Miata anymore. The honeymoon with Jensen was short-lived. As a matter of fact it almost ended before it was even installed. One feature it had was pre-amp outputs, which were perfect for interfacing with the existing Bose amps, but they wouldn’t seem to work together. This prompted a trip to the local car audio store for a Scosche line leveler which would take the speaker level outputs and damp them down.
This worked real well and we had music, but I don’t know whether it was the rat’s nest of wiring that this combo created or the cheap Jensen radio, but there was always a high pitched whine in the background that’s sound varied along with the engine RPM. But the real killer was the display. No clock. The OEM radio had the option to always display the time and seeing as neither Donna nor I wear a watch we had become used to taking a quick glance and seeing the time. Oh, the Jensen had a clock, just no way to keep it on at all time. To get it to display the time all you had to do was take your eyes off the road to spot which one of the three buttons to the right of the center knob had the tiny little letters DISP on it and push with your finger. But you had to push it for just the right length of time to get it. Push it for too short a time and it paused the playback. Push it for too long a time and it would mute the sound. Donna never mastered it, so the job fell to me and after two years of practice I had about a 60% success rate of getting right the first time.
I’ve been looking for a replacement Bose radio on eBay for several months. Trouble is that The Emperor’s style radio was only available in the years 2002 & 2003 on the LS model. The 2004 & 2005 radios would work, but they had silver faces which would look a little odd in the car. They looked OK in the 04/05 cars because Mazda changed the whole center stack trim to silver faced stuff. I missed out on one unit that was Buy It Now for $100 by stewing in indecision a couple hours. Then a couple weeks ago one came up for $150 But It Now, but I didn’t want to spend that much. I bid $100. It went for $135 plus shipping to some one else. After work on Tuesday I noticed one come up for $59 + $15 for shipping. I bought it.
The only downside to this buy was it didn’t have the little black trim pieces that flank the radio and hide the removal holes. Who knows where I’ll be able to find those, but I’m willing to overlook those minor gaps because all I have to do is glance down and there the time will be.
Oh, the title, it refers to the cassette player that is at the bottom of the radio. It was an option, you could have added a mini-disc player or an MP3 player, but someone actually paid extra for a cassette deck.
Started down, went up, back down, still down.
Miata Top Transitions since 06/25/15: 19