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MG Midget and Sprite Technical - DAB Radio

Looking to fit a radio in the midget - who am I kidding I probably won't be able to hear it, but lets say I can listed to it when I'm sat in traffic jams...

CD - no point as it'll jump all over the place so I really only want Ipod and DAB if poss, although looking at the Halfords website it looks like I'll still get a CD player anyway.

Anyone done this in an MG? Does DAB work? Got it at home and in my company car so would hate to have to go back to listening to 5-live through an old sock, and not having 6-Music at all...
L McInally

I'd just get a small amp and get a iphone.
I use it a lot in the GT to listen to the radio (plenty of aps for that)
Onno K

Hi Lloyd

I've got a small amp on the transmission tunnel, and play my ipod through it, loud enough around town/in traffic jams and just about bearable with hardtop in place.

It was dead cheap off ebay and works fine.

I did put a dab in a bgt once, but it was a full size unit with an adaptor and it had an ariel thats stuck inside windscreen, wasnt great reception, but it was 3 or so years ago when they were pretty new.


John Collins

Hold fire before investing in DAB.

As my TV area is about to go digital, I was also reading about DAB the other day. I had assumed the switchover dates might coincide, and I would lose radio reception.

Seems not. Only TV is switching, DAB is yet to be decided. It's been postponed.

There is a debate about the pros and cons of DAB. Some say it's no better than FM, and that DAB will be made redundant by the evergrowing WiFi signal.

Read this, and other bits of info before commiting to DAB.
Lawrence Slater

I wont comment on sound quality as that's a personal thing but one thing I do know having had DAB portable radios for 10 years now is their potential to eat batteries

I don't know if this is the same for car DAB versions or if they'd use as much power as car CDs or cassette/8-tracks with their motors but perhaps something to bear in mind depending on your use, battery and car charging system

the DAB thing is a bit like the VCR of 70/80s with us using a different system to others and perhaps 'emerging’ countries not having the same ‘legacies’
Nigel Atkins

Coverage on DAB is much worse at the moment - though they've centred it on main roads so in cars you have more chance. Still can;pt get Radio 2 all the way up to Northumberland though, as soon an I'm off the A1 it dies. Wifi is unlikely to encroach on DAB as the data rate will be too slow for internet. Less pressure on DAB to switch as 'normal' radio uses less bandwidth than the telly channels did, and is in a frequency band better suited to long range low datarate services, like radio. Eventually it'll switch, as DAB stuff becomes cheaper to produce.

DAB is fundamentally more resistant to interference, but when interference does occur it's a lot more obvious. Sound quality is supposed to be better, but I can't tell the difference.

You can buy non-jumpy CD players, I had one in my metro and it was great. An amp/DAB radio should draw tiny currents when compared to lamps etc.

I run a portable DAB with an adaptor into the P6 tape player, it works really well where there's signal. No chance of hearing anything at all in the midget :)
Rob Armstrong

I think the lack of background noise with DAB makes it sound 'quieter' so you need to turn the volume up more, I think you'd need a powerful amplifer in a Spridget to get the best out of DAB

I've never heard a car DAB but for home use I've had a couple of DAB portables for years and I'm on my second personal DAB radio, I find the difference to me personally to be stark but I mainly listen to speech radio now

the new fangled digiboxes and digital TVs have radio staions on too, so you can get radio thru the telly, gas from the Electric Board, whatever next

no Planet Rock on the telly though
Nigel Atkins

How much do you want to spend? Kenwood do a unit with CD, bluetooth, DAB, FM radio, USB, SD card and 50W RMS per channel. Covers pretty much all angles. My son has one in his Audi and its a great unit for about £200.

Personally I've had a Radio/CD in my midget and never had a problem with jumping. Not really an issues with modern units.
Bob T

years ago when I was looking there were only a few DAB radios for cars and they were £600 units - before the days of teeth staining - the catch-22 of price and sales was part of the reason they didn't and haven't caught on, plus until the car manufacturers offer them as upgrades or standard fit to their cars

the popularity of the audio casette had a lot to do with the installation of players in cars
Nigel Atkins


JBL Milennia MR-50 are used for marine and motorcycle appilcations because they are small, and waterproof. Dimensions are listed on this link, should fit your Midget with no problem.


Larry C.
Larry C '69 Midget

Had DAB in the company Audi for three years - fantastic. A few blackspots at various points on the motorways and once I get off the beaten track, but got to say that compared to MW it's light years ahead. FM still competitive, but as I listen almost exclusively to 5-Live and 6-Music then FM doesn't really help.
L McInally

I finally settled on the iPod with Bose noise canceling headphones.
Glenn Mallory

I finally settled on the iPod with Bose noise canceling headphones.
Glenn Mallory

Don't you have 3g data connections in the UK?
Plenty of speed in that to stream music.
I do that a lot and have better reception than most radio's
Onno K

UK 3G???

Once you're outside cities, 3G coverage is patchy. In my town, you're best turning off 3G as you lose calls, txt etc. and battery can last <12 hours. So I use GSM/GPRS (and EGPRS when lucky) only, to preserve battery life and sanity.

Anthony Cutler

It amazes me that car manufacturers still fit multi CD changers. That is seriously defunct technology.

I resent that bloody great plastic box which takes up 80% of my glove compartment!

Radio head unit with 3.5mm plug is all you need these days. Why there are not more of those on the market, I can't understand.
K Williams

I think most units do come with a 3.5mm aux input and a USB or SD card slot now - even most new car hifi's. Its taken the car industry a while but I think they are catching on!
Bob T

This thread was discussed between 16/05/2012 and 19/05/2012

MG Midget and Sprite Technical index

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