Tech, Autos, & Gear in Layman's Terms Since 2006

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June 3, 2009 • Reviews

Griffin TuneFlex AUX SmartClick

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Like many of the people here at Gear Diary, I am a gadget freak.  I have mobile gadgets, gadgets in my house, and gadgets in my car.  The problem with all these gadgets, of course, is all the cables and wires that go along with the gadgets.  In the car, at least, Griffin has addressed part of my problem with their TunFlex AUX SmartClick.  It allows you to mount your iPhone on a lighter-based stand, eliminating the power cord.  So does it work well?  Read on…

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As I mentioned, the TuneFlex AUX SmartClick for iPhone is a lighter-based mount for your iPhone or iPod.  It plugs into your lighter and powers your device, while also providing an AUX port connection to your car radio.

The mount itself worked very well – it was very flexible, allowing me to twist it into nearly any position I could possibly require.  It comes with a variety of  “dock” shapes to allow you to firmly connect a variety of iPod/iPhone models.  Again, Griffin’s long experience in this space pays off – the mounts work very well.

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The TuneFlex AUX is an AUX-only solution.  You must connect it into your radio via an AUX or MP3 port.  This limits the vehicles in which it can be used, but it also means you get a nice clear sound while you are using it.

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There’s even a small volume control on the base of the mount (next to the AUX jack).  This really does work pretty well, but the volume control isn’t exactly placed for convenience.  I think you’ll be more likely to set it and forget it, using your radio volume control more than the TuneFlex volume control.

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The “Click” in the product name refers to an external, battery-operated remote that you strap on to your steering wheel (or other convenient location).  It has the primary iPod/iPhone controls on it .  Controls for play/pause, track forward/back (as well as scanning forward and back), turning the backlight on/off, and turning the shuffle on/off (and switching between song shuffle and album shuffle).  The control worked well, but I wasn’t as enamored with the velcro strap.  It didn’t function as well as I would have liked.  I’m not sure if the velcro parts were simply in the wrong place on the strap, or the strap was simply the wrong size, but I had to sort of work it a bit to get it to fit on my steering wheel, and then there’s the extra strap hanging out which continually annoyed me.  It may be that I’m just not putting the thing on correctly (in which case better instructions would be in order) or it’s just a case of a part trying to be a “one-size-fits-all” and only doing a mediocre job of it.  I know it could be cut off, but what if I moved to another vehicle that needed the length?  In any case, the controller is good, the mounting mechanism could use a little more refinement.

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Overall, however, I’d recommend this unit highly, especially if you’re really mostly in the market for a power/mounting solution.   Griffin is very good at making these kinds of devices solid and attractive.    The price point is a little higher than I’d like, but the build quality is also high.

More information about the Griffin TuneFlex AUX SmartClick for iPhone  is available here.    The TuneFlex AUX SmartClick for iPhone is currently available for $79.99.

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