Top positive review
129 people found this helpful
Good solution for streaming music in the car
on September 5, 2012
I was looking at a product to allow me to stream music in my car but keep the car's functionality for phone calls via bluetooth. I needed a receiver with a 3.5mm output that could be used with the stock radio input. I found a few products (some much more expensive or no longer made) but wasn't sure any would work for this specific need. Many reviews I read said you could be connected via bluetooth to either the car or the receiver, but not both at the same time - meaning if I got a phone call while driving I would need to either use the speakerphone, or disconnect from one device and switch to the car's bluetooth system. Not exactly hands free or convenient. Even if it did work, I was hesitant because many reviewers noted problems with the batteries in the units not lasting long or that they didn't work while charging.
I took a leap of faith for $30 and bought the Go Groove. It is a very small device and does not feel very durable. I am not too worried as it won't be moving often, but the thinness of the wire between the device and the 3.5 mm output has me concerned - I am worried it would pull off without much force. I will try to reinforce it somehow without looking ridiculous (some reviewers have suggested heat shrink tubing). If you plan to use this daily with a pair of headphones or earbuds, I would be concerned about the wear and tear of everyday use.
As far as functionality, it has one button, one small light and one input for charging. You press and/or hold the button to initially turn it on or pair it with a new device. Once on, it should pair automatically with a known device. When I get in the car, I just need to press the button for a few seconds and it is on and working instantly.
The quality of the music seems to be equivalent to the sound using 3.5 mm cable as before and the Logitech receiver I use with my home stereo - so good enough for me. Audiophiles wouldn't use bluetooth for music anyway right? Also, most importantly for my specific situation, it DOES pair with my phone and the car at the same time (see screen shot in user images above). Phone calls are seamless, music is interrupted by a ring or me placing a call via the car's bluetooth, and when I hang up, the music comes back. Really cool. It does not randomly disconnect or cut in and out. For what it's worth, I am using a galaxy note. Your mileage may vary.
Battery life has been a non-issue in the first 2 weeks. I drove a little over a thousand miles and only recharged once at home, and even then it was working fine but I didn't want to run out while on the road. I can't comment if it works while charging from the cigarette lighter as I have not tried yet. I will update my review when I do. I can say the charger being proprietary is a worry as well(the end that plugs into the unit is a small circle - not mini or micro usb), if you lose that wire, good luck finding a replacement.
All in all it is a great deal for the price if you want to add bluetooth music streaming capability in your car, even more so if you already have factory bluetooth for phone calls and don't want to choose between one or the other. I would have given it 5 stars if it felt a little more durable, the wire was thicker and the charger was a standard size.
I have had the chance to try it and the unit does indeed work while charging in the car. No worries there.
It has developed an issue with the sound popping and hissing, but I think it is related to my phone and not the unit. It only happens when I am connected to the car's phone audio and the GG receiver for music. When I disconnect from the car phone bluetooth it goes away, so I can't fault the unit, but I am disappointed.