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Installing Wireless Headphones in Your Car: What Are Your Options?

Wireless Headphones in Car
Wireless technology is all the rage — and for good reason. It is convenient, offers flexibility, and can greatly enhance how you experience regular activities such as music streaming.
If you are looking to improve how you and your family use the car's audio system, speak to an automotive sound technician about installing wireless headphones. Wireless headphones come in three categories: infrared, radio frequency, and Bluetooth headphones.
Here's a quick guide to help you understand wireless headphone technology for better decision-making.
Infrared Headphones
Many modern cars come with headrest DVD systems that typically use infrared (IR) technology to relay audio signals from the video screen to the headphones via infrared spectrum.
IR headphones can be either single or dual channel. Dual channel types allow two passengers to each listen to their own channel simultaneously.
Because IR headphones utilize line-of-sight technology, these types of headphones work best when there is no obstruction between the transmitting device and the receiving headphones.
Different types of IR headphones have different frequencies. Check that the IR headphones you buy are compatible with your vehicle's frequency range.
IR headphones are battery-operated and need to be recharged depending on the frequency of use.
Radio Frequency Headphones
While IR headphones relay signals via infrared spectrum, radio frequency (RF) headphones use radio signals. RF headphones also support two stereo channels, allowing passengers to enjoy different radio stations.
In RF technology, the two channels are brought together and transmitted as a single frequency, and then the signals are demodulated at the receiving end of each set of headphones. Modern RF technology operates at higher frequencies in the range of 2.4 and 5.8 GHz.
RF signals are prone to the usual transmission interferences from wireless networks, video transmitters, and cell phones.
Bluetooth Headphones
Bluetooth headphones epitomize the peak of modern wireless technology. Installing Bluetooth functionality in your car not only allows for wireless audio streaming; it also enables hands-free smartphone operations.
There are several ways to install Bluetooth technology in your car. You could install a universal Bluetooth kit or use a vehicle-specific Bluetooth-enabled adapter that connects to your current stereo system.
Alternatively, you could purchase and install a new stereo system with built-in Bluetooth functionality.
All three methods allow you to pair Bluetooth headphones to the stereo system or kit through the same mechanism used to connect a mobile device.
Universal Bluetooth Kits
Universal Bluetooth kits are stand-alone devices that feature a microphone and speaker that can be interfaced with your stereo. Some advanced ones allow music streaming using your mobile device.
Quite a bit of wiring is required, and you may have to replace your factory stereo to install the Bluetooth kit. To skip the hassle, have your local automotive technician install the device for you.
Vehicle-Compatible Adapters
If you want to retain your car's original stereo system, consider a Bluetooth-enabled adapter. These devices allow for both music streaming and hands-free call operations.
Bluetooth-enabled adapters also require a bit of installation work. Consider parting with a few bucks to have an automotive audio technician do the job for you.
Stereo With Built-In Bluetooth Functionality
Alternatively, you could purchase a new stereo with Bluetooth. The advantage here is that you do not have to install or mess around with a separate adapter. A Bluetooth-enabled stereo lets you stream music and operate your smartphone right from the stereo.
Where wireless headphones are concerned, Bluetooth technology is a clear winner. Bluetooth headphones deliver higher quality sound and ensure safety with hands-free calling.
Whether you are looking to install wireless headphones or to spruce up your car sound system, Creative Acoustics can get the job done. Get in touch with us today to discuss your idea.