Gaia and the Simple Audio Setup

Road Trip and Audio Listening

The featured image has the simplistic audio set-up I used to play music through my rent-a-car for my road trip. This one is a very basic set-up, which is my Sony Xperia Z3V phone connected to a male-to-male 3.5mm cord, then the other end attached to an audio jack in the car. The audio then plays out of the car’s audio system.

This is for my current road trip from San Jose, CA to Seattle, WA as it has been a while since I traveled by car going long distance. As I like having music when I drive, I really need my music to help me with the drive (aside from the views and occasional talking).

Before having a 3.5mm audio jacks or a USB in cars was common, most people played music via 8-track, cassette, CD, or Satellite radio when outside a city. It was either that or trying to find a radio station on the countryside (aside from silence or the dreaded talking). My rental car came with a standard radio with CD player (some modern CD players can play mp3s from discs), but trying to think of sorting out albums to fit onto a CD would be too time consuming.

Car Audio in the Past

I remember the days when I was a kid and my father had a Cassette collection of albums that was ready for playback during road trips. When CDs were an option in the late 90’s, then it was CDs that were loaded in instead.

Now with car audio units that are able to play Satellite Radio, audio in via analog jacks or Digital USB, and some units with built in drives or able to read Flash memory you do not need to fiddle with stacks of Cassettes or CDs.

Your phone or music player would be decent enough or in most cases, the best choice. There is even head units like Pioneer’s or Sony’s if you want aftermarket units that can play Hi-Res natively.

aiotsukalovetrickyAi Otsuka – LOVE TRiCKY

For my set-up, I had various albums and playlists I got together for the trip ready: certain Sonic the Hedgehog songs, select Megaman X themes, a couple of recent Vocaloid albums (AVTechNO!’s new album, Clean Tears’s new one), Wangan Midnight Collection, Ai Otsuka’s Love Tricky, Daft Punk’s Discovery, and various others. Some albums or songs were already on my phone, and others I just put in the phone to listen to re-listen.

Love Tricky is the only Hi-Res album I loaded (24-bit/96kHz), while the Wangan Collection and Discovery are in CD-Res WAV files, and the rest in mp3s. If I attached my NuPrime uDSD or other DAC to be used as the Digital-to-Audio converter instead of the built-in phone one, then maybe the sound could have been better, but using the default Hyundai Accent rent-a-car’s speakers and a stock 3.5mm cable, it would be hard to tell a difference (or rather no time for an ABX test).

I thought about doing a test but I had a different purpose for the trip and wanted to enjoy the scenery as well as the songs during my 2-day drive up.


When traveling, what are your go-to playlists?