2 of 3 Part Mobile Hardware Reviews

On October 9, 2008

Disclaimer: Even though we normally do not do any sort of hardware reviews, we thought that since there were a lot of new apps being released for use in the car, and we have tried many different hardware solutions for mounting and audio input, some of you might also be interested in what we discovered.  So we are going to put up a few posts about different products we thought you might be interested in…

Shure MPA-3C iPhone Adapter – Review

There are two accessories I am now using in my car to ensure I can safely use my iPhone for music and calls while driving.

In part one we took a quick look at the RAM-mount windshield cradle. It provides a secure way to keep the iPhone accessible while ensuring that it does not go flying into my face if I stop short.

The RAM-mount car-cradle is only half the equation, though. The second part is the Shure MPA-3C iPhone Adapter.

I first bought the Shure adapter for my first generation iPhone. At the time the adapter’s narrow plug was needed if I wanted to use high end headphones whose plug did not fit into the recessed plug on the first gen. Thankfully, the iPhone 3G’s headphone port is flush with the phone and no longer requires a specialty plug.

By plugging my iPhone into the car stereo via the “Aux In” cord, I can play music through my car stereo and it work’s great.  Because the Shure adapter has a noise-cancelling in-line VoicePort microphone, however, it also works for hands-free calls.  When I speak, the microphone picks up my voice with ease. And, when the person on the other side of the call speaks, their voice plays through the car stereo.  I used this numerous times while driving on a highway yesterday, and each time, the other person could hear me perfectly!  It works like a charm.

According to the company the adapter is

“tuned to optimize intelligibility, ensuring callers hear you clearly even in noisy environments.”

In addition, it includes a control button for answering and ending calls.

There are downsides to the Shure Music Phone Adapter, however.  At $39.99 its not cheap.  For daily use, the fact that the adapter is 30 inches long, is a bit of a hassle.  When used with headphones, I often have to deal with 60 inches of cord. That’s 7 ½ feet of cable!  Unless you are a 7′9″ Duke Basketball player, that is one heck of a lot of cable with which to deal!  On the other hand, since my primary use for it is in the car, the longer cable is an advantage, as it allows me a great deal of flexibility in optimally positioning the microphone.

   * Let you use your own headphones.
   * iPhone-compatible adapter makes any headphones usable.
   * Turns standard headphones into a complete hands-free device.
   * Voice quality of the mike is excellent.

   * Excessive cable can be a challenge
   * Somewhat pricey

You can get the Shure MPA-3C Music Phone Adapter at Amazon.com HERE.  https://www.amazon.com/Shure-MPA-3C-Music-Adapter-iPhone/dp/B000UD205K