How to Play Music From Phone to Car Without Aux or Bluetooth

There are a number of ways you can play music from phone to car using your android or ios phones. In this article, our focus is to show you how to play music from your phone to your car without aux or Bluetooth.

Which ways can I connect my phone to my car stereo?

The list below connects from our phones to the radio and car speakers already in our cars which don’t require any further speaker or stereo modifications.

Some of the ways by which you can connect your phone to the car stereo are:

  • FM transmitter
  • Cassette tape adaptor
  • Bluetooth hands free phone app,
  • Android Auto and Apple Car Play
  • 30 pin connector
  • USB stereo jack

These are some of the common ways by which you can connect your car stereo and your smartphone. In this article, we are going to focus on the ways of connecting other than using Bluetooth and aux cable.

How to play music from phone to car without aux or Bluetooth

FM Transmitter

Handsfree Call Car Charger, Wireless Bluetooth FM Transmitter Radio Receiver, Mp3 Music Stereo Adapter, Dual USB Port Charger
Handsfree Call Car Charger, Wireless Bluetooth FM Transmitter Radio Receiver, Mp3 Music Stereo Adapter, Dual USB Port Charger

One common way to play music in your car from your phone without any aux or Bluetooth is via the already installed radio in your car. All you need is an FM transmitter, or a Bluetooth transmitter like the one in the image above.

This is one of the best ways to play music from your phone to your car stereo because the process is relatively cheap and is easy to set up.

This is an inexpensive method to connect your phone to your car stereo if your car doesn’t have an inbuilt Bluetooth or Auxiliary (AUX) jack.

The quality of the audio you get will depend on the number of FM stations in your area and your phone type.

Cassette tape adapter

If your stereo has it then you can connect your phone to the car stereo using the cassette tape adapter.  

The cassette tape adapter’s 3.5mm audio cable needs to be plugged into the phone’s headphone slot.

The adapter is then inserted into the audio system’s cassette slot. Then look up at the audio system’s menu to find “tape” mode.  Press ‘play’.

This is not so common now – I don’t think i have seen a cassette tape on a stereo in many years!

Download an App to your phone

This is your best option when you want to play music from your phone to a car that has hands-free Bluetooth call feature but without the option to play music via Bluetooth.

Many older model cars come with this hands-free calling feature.

You download an app on your phone specifically designed to play music through you hands free feature on your car.

Now when you connect to hands free bluetooth on your phone you can play music from your phone directly through the car stereo.

The same tool which is used while you are making a call will be used to play music via your phone on your car speakers.

This is a great way to connect to your stereo and doesn’t need a FM Bluetooth Adapter. 

Android Auto and Apple CarPlay 

These days many cars come with Apple’s CarPlay and Google’s Android Auto apps.

These apps can link up your phone to the head unit of your car to play music from your phone.

With this feature you can even display your phone screen straight away; view navigation maps send messages, and many more. 

They are not supported in all cars. But they are great features to have if your car model supports these apps.

You can also integrate your voice using Google Assistant and Siri which is fantastic.

If your car lacks these features, you can utilize the Android Auto on the screen of your phone.

Link up with a USB cable you can get similar sound quality. However, currently there is no such feature for Apple phones. 

USB Input

The option of USB input is a more recent feature. Most new model cars feature a USB port. This allows you to even charge your phone without a standard power socket adapter.

You can either use the USB flash drive or directly plug your phone to play music from your phone to car. 

For cars which have USB ports, this is the best option when it comes to playing music from the phone to the car stereo.

It comes with a reliable connection and a decent sound quality. It also charges your phone and allows you to make hands-free calls while driving.

You must have a secondary cable for it to function. USB connections generally have better sound quality than auxiliary inputs.

30 Pin ipod Adapter

Some vehicles have the option of connecting to your phone using a pre installed 30 pin adapter. This lets you to link your iPad and iPhone directly to the stereo.

An iPod adapter will always give you better audio quality than an FM transmitter.

Will I lose any sound quality by connecting in these ways?

AUX, Bluetooth Receiver music player
AUX plug in Bluetooth transmitter

USB, hands free bluetooth phone app, 30 pin connector, Android Auto and Apple car play will give you the best sound with the least interference.

Using an FM transmitter is the option most likely to give you interference. This is ecause the sound quality depends on how good your signal is to the radio stations in your area.

Although some of these methods (such as FM transmitter) don’t produce excellent audio quality, many people are happy enough and are just glad to be able to play their own music whilst driving.

Also the audio quality will be affected by the quality of the transmitter.There will be more interference on lesser quality versions.

What is the best way to connect my phone to my car stereo?

If you don’t want to compromise on sound quality, then aux or Bluetooth is the best option.

However, this article is focusing how to connecting without these two ways.

For many the best way to connect your phone to your car stereo is via hands free bluetooth app on your phone.

Car cd-radio control buttons closeup


As you can see there are many ways we can play music on our car stereo from our phones.

From old school FM transmitters, Bluetooth tech, to newer apps provided by android and ios. Thankfully nowadays we have many options to choose from depending on your own car setup and your budget.

We will be happy to hear your thoughts

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