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Old August 14th, 2011, 09:50   #6
Veteran Member
Join Date: May 2011
Location: Arlington, VA
TDI(s): JSW 2011
Default iPod/iPhone Use in a VW

My experiences are based on an '11 JSW w/ RNS-315 Navigation/Stereo. The car came with an MDI cable which hooks up into a receptacle under the center armrest. The iPhone/iPod end is a standard 30 pin male docking connector.

I find the MDI interface that VW uses with iPods to be a bit clunky. VW's head units don't mimic the iOS control very well--the iPod's built in controls find songs and playlists more quickly than the VW interface does. I had great hopes for MDI, but I find I rarely use it--only if I need a charge and my 12V charger has gone missing. (Three kids and a wife...)

I use my iPhone to play music via Bluetooth as well as using the VW handsfree phone interface. This makes the most of each device's best capabilities, but the downside is that I have to use an accessory iPod/iPhone charger and my phone is always bouncing around the car somewhere.

Sound is better to my ears over Bluetooth than sound routed through the 30 pin connector on the bottom of the iPhone/iPod. Play is controlled through the iOS, not through the built in controls on the steering wheel. (Which is too bad, but that seems to be an Apple imposed limitation--no other devices can do this with iOS, either.)

Phone over Bluetooth works great--much better than the iPhone's built in speakerphone. Watch out for "*****in' Betty," though. VW's notification voice is quite loud.

Last edited by Outrider6; August 14th, 2011 at 09:56.
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