Best Bluetooth receiver for a car

Audio & Video

Old smartphones may not be able to take advantage of the newest versions of Bluetooth, but most recent phones are compatible with the latest versions of Bluetooth and help users get the most out of their devices.

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Which Bluetooth receiver for a car are best?

Newer cars usually have built-in Bluetooth features, but using a Bluetooth connection for hands-free calling in an older vehicle requires a Bluetooth receiver. A small dongle plugged into the stereo is enough to upgrade your car and connect your smartphone for streaming music and phone calls.

If you need an affordable Bluetooth receiver that can handle multiple devices at once, the top choice is the TROND 2-in-1 Bluetooth V4.1 Transmitter/Receiver. It is compact and efficient with a good connection range if you need to use it outside of a vehicle, too.

What to know before you buy a Bluetooth receiver for a car

Does your car stereo have Bluetooth?

Older car stereos do not have Bluetooth connectivity. Plugging a Bluetooth receiver into the 3.5mm auxiliary port in the vehicle will allow for a connected Bluetooth device to stream music and phone calls using the car speakers. This is a much cheaper solution than buying a whole new car or a new Bluetooth-enabled stereo system. Before you pick out a receiver, double check that your car does not have built-in Bluetooth.

Do you need a Bluetooth receiver in your home?

If you have a home stereo system that doesn’t have the ability to stream Bluetooth audio signals, it could be useful to have a Bluetooth receiver in the home and the car. Some receivers work well in the car, but have trouble receiving signals from longer ranges within a house. Before you buy, check the maximum signal ranges of a receiver if you’d like to use the receiver without sitting right next to it.

How many Bluetooth devices do you want to connect?

Many receivers can only pair with one device at a time. If you have multiple Bluetooth users in a vehicle at the same time, a receiver that can pair with more than one will be useful. Bluetooth receivers that can connect to multiple devices can usually be easily swapped from one Bluetooth audio source to another, allowing multiple users to take turns sharing and streaming music.

What to look for in a quality Bluetooth receiver for a car

Auto-pairing

Receivers that can remember your Bluetooth-enabled devices and automatically connect to them again later are the best option. It can be a hassle to reconnect your mobile device to the receiver every time you want to use it. The best Bluetooth receivers can automatically connect and reconnect to your device, which makes streaming audio faster and easier.

Adaptability

Some receivers can receive signals from multiple Bluetooth devices at the same time. This is great for a road trip with multiple passengers, because everyone can connect their smartphones to the stereo system and share music. If a receiver is only able to pair with one device, swapping from one user’s audio to another will be difficult every time.

Battery life

The trade-off between long battery life and a compact device that takes up little space is hard to balance. Small receivers are convenient and portable, but they can have a severely limited battery. It’s best to expect that you will need to charge your Bluetooth receiver after using it in the car. The best receivers will last for hours of continuous driving before requiring a charge.

How much you can expect to spend on a Bluetooth receiver for a car

You can get simple Bluetooth receivers for less than $40, which is usually all that is needed for a car. Higher quality receivers better suited to supporting fancy stereo systems can be found for $40-$80.

Bluetooth receiver for a car FAQ

What is the difference between Bluetooth receivers and transmitters?

A. Transmitters connect to an audio source and stream the audio signals to speakers. Receivers pair and receive Bluetooth audio from a smartphone or other Bluetooth-enabled device. These two types of technology serve different purposes, but some devices are designed to do both. If both functions would be useful for you, find a receiver that is also a transmitter.

Can you use Bluetooth receivers for music?

A. Putting a Bluetooth receiver in the car makes hands-free calling a breeze and music streaming is possible, too. However, it should be noted that the audio quality of compressed Bluetooth signals may not be best for everyone. Many users will find they cannot tell the difference, but audio fans may want a different method of listening to their favorite music.

What’s the best Bluetooth receiver for a car to buy?

Top Bluetooth receiver for a car

TROND 2-in-1 Bluetooth V4.1 Transmitter Receiver

TROND 2-in-1 Bluetooth V4.1 Transmitter/Receiver

What you need to know: An affordable two-way Bluetooth transceiver, it allows for multiple devices to connect at once.

What you’ll love: This Bluetooth receiver has solid reception for calls to prevent signal dropout. It easily connects via the audio jack and pairs quickly with Bluetooth-enabled devices. It can transmit to multiple speakers at the same time and receive signals from more than just one device.

What you should consider: Some users had trouble with the audio levels and the battery life is short enough that you will want to charge it when you get out of the car.

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon

Top Bluetooth receiver for a car for the money

Anker Soundsynd A3352 Bluetooth Receiver

Anker Soundsynd A3352 Bluetooth Receiver

What you need to know: An affordable and compact receiver, it doesn’t take up much space.

What you’ll love: This device connects through the AUX port of a stereo. It is very small and easily portable to and from vehicles. It’s able to pair with two Bluetooth-enabled devices at once and has up to 12 hours of continuous battery life. It uses Bluetooth version 5.0, so it has a very stable wireless connection.

What you should consider: Some users experience static while not streaming device audio to the receiver. It also makes a noticeable noise while being charged.

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon

Worth checking out

TP-Link Bluetooth 4.1 Receiver

TP-Link Bluetooth 4.1 Receiver

What you need to know: This device is useful for the car and inside the home.

What you’ll love: This product can pair with two Bluetooth-enabled devices at the same time and easily swap between them. The design is compact and doesn’t take up much space in the car. The device can connect using an audio port. It automatically turns on and off with your car for fast and easy pairing.

What you should consider: It has a little latency at all connection ranges. It must be charged when you leave the vehicle, as there is no backup battery power. 

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon

 

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Elliott Rivette writes for BestReviews. BestReviews has helped millions of consumers simplify their purchasing decisions, saving them time and money.

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