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Stereo mini-plug analog input - looking for a solution

Phil Gorski

Member
Dec 16, 2012
408
9
Vancouver
I am anxious to figure out how to install a stereo mini-plug analog input in my Model S so I can take advantage of this tremendous device called Pono. If you haven't heard of it do yourself a favor and go check it out in detail at PONO


Here's the output jacks it has..
The PonoPlayer has two output jacks: one is a normal mini-stereo headphone plug, and the output is specially designed for headphones or earbuds and is meant for personal listening; the second is a stereo mini-plug analog output and is specifically designed for listening on your home audio system, in your car, or as an input to your Sonos Connect, so you can share the PonoMusic experience with your friends and family.


Any ideas?
 

jhs_7645

VIN: #3305
Jul 1, 2012
564
221
Camas, WA
I am anxious to figure out how to install a stereo mini-plug analog input in my Model S so I can take advantage of this tremendous device called Pono. If you haven't heard of it do yourself a favor and go check it out in detail at PONO
Here's the output jacks it has..
The PonoPlayer has two output jacks: one is a normal mini-stereo headphone plug, and the output is specially designed for headphones or earbuds and is meant for personal listening; the second is a stereo mini-plug analog output and is specifically designed for listening on your home audio system, in your car, or as an input to your Sonos Connect, so you can share the PonoMusic experience with your friends and family.

Any ideas?

First idea is that you can get a mini-jack bluetooth transmitter, but then you lose some of the audio quality that PONO seems to tout.

My gut says why.. oh why.. did they not provide a USB out? This isn't 1992. Seriously.. very strange. I think this device is doomed.
 

trils0n

2013 P85
Feb 12, 2013
1,527
1,979
SF Bay Area
Pono uses FLAC files right? Just put them on a USB drive and use the USB port. The Model S plays FLAC files -- and they sound great. No need for the extra device.
 

dsmith2189

Active Member
Aug 18, 2012
1,413
100
don't see why you would need another device to play your digital music. just plug in a USB drive directly into your MS, instead of trying to play them on a device that needs an adapter to play them in your MS.
MS plays FLAC, MP3, MP4, WAV, AIFF 16-bit (but not 24-bit), AAC (unprotected), OGG, WMA and lossless WMA.
PONO plays FLAC, ALAC, mp3, WAV, AIFF, AAC (unprotected). PONO must be for someone who has large library of ALAC files. All the rest are supported in the MS.
 

Johan

Ex got M3 in the divorce, waiting for EU Model Y!
Feb 9, 2012
7,499
9,916
Drammen, Norway
Pono uses FLAC files right? Just put them on a USB drive and use the USB port. The Model S plays FLAC files -- and they sound great. No need for the extra device.

The Pono is supposed to give the best Digital to Analog conversion and the most linear output. I think doing what you suggest will give the best results that are possible in the Model S. Adding another device in between will just mean that you are taking an excellent analog signal and converting it to a digital one again and in the process you loose all that quality.

The Model S will also do it's own digital to analog processing so the only way you really use the Pono properly would be to plug it to the speaker amplifier of the car at a point of the signaling just before the signal gets sent from the amplifier to the speakers, thereby bypassing the cars digital to analog processing. This is the whole point of the Pono. If the speaker system in the Model S is good enough though is another question. You will likely need a very good speaker system in order to have a noticable difference with the Pono.
 

Hank42

Legacy Supporter
Sep 30, 2012
546
344
United States - NY
Something like this?

I am anxious to figure out how to install a stereo mini-plug analog input in my Model S so I can take advantage of this tremendous device called Pono. If you haven't heard of it do yourself a favor and go check it out in detail at PONO


Here's the output jacks it has..
The PonoPlayer has two output jacks: one is a normal mini-stereo headphone plug, and the output is specially designed for headphones or earbuds and is meant for personal listening; the second is a stereo mini-plug analog output and is specifically designed for listening on your home audio system, in your car, or as an input to your Sonos Connect, so you can share the PonoMusic experience with your friends and family.


Any ideas?

Amazon.com: GOgroove BlueSense TRM Wireless A2DP Bluetooth Transmitter / Adapter for Mp3 Players , Tablets , Laptops , Desktops , Home Theater Accessories
 

HankLloydRight

No Roads
Supporting Member
Jan 18, 2014
13,069
11,318
Connecticut

Hank42

Legacy Supporter
Sep 30, 2012
546
344
United States - NY
Compression

That will get the audio into the system, but due to all the A/D conversions to get there, it totally defeats the purpose and audio fidelity of the PonoPlayer. There's a lot of compression when using Bluetooth.


True, I agree with that statement. With the wind-noise and road noise, I think trying to achieve perfect audio has to come with compromises. Unless, of course, we're talking show car environment where those two noise sources are not present.
 

HankLloydRight

No Roads
Supporting Member
Jan 18, 2014
13,069
11,318
Connecticut
I don't think we're here to add assumptions to the OPs original question. He didn't ask for a Bluetooth solution, as the OP seems advanced enough to have considered and rejected that option. He clearly wants optimal audio quality that can really only be achieved with a direct analog connection, bypassing any additional (and unknown) digital conversions.

I'm sorry, but it's a pet peeve of mine, when people are online and are quick to provide answers for questions never asked.
 

Johan

Ex got M3 in the divorce, waiting for EU Model Y!
Feb 9, 2012
7,499
9,916
Drammen, Norway
I answered: he needs to make a jack himself, where he connects to the last amplifier stage just before the speakers, after the point of DA conversion. This does not exist in the car.
 

HankLloydRight

No Roads
Supporting Member
Jan 18, 2014
13,069
11,318
Connecticut
I answered: he needs to make a jack himself, where he connects to the last amplifier stage just before the speakers, after the point of DA conversion. This does not exist in the car.

My comments were not directed at you. You actually provided a reasonable answer/solution to the OPs challange.
 

Johan

Ex got M3 in the divorce, waiting for EU Model Y!
Feb 9, 2012
7,499
9,916
Drammen, Norway
My comments were not directed at you. You actually provided a reasonable answer/solution to the OPs challange.

Thanks. However s bit of rambling over a topic can often lead to interesting discussions as well, but I agree there was a question in the original post. So Phil Gorsky did you come back to the thread you started? Did you find a solution?
 

jhs_7645

VIN: #3305
Jul 1, 2012
564
221
Camas, WA
My comments were not directed at you. You actually provided a reasonable answer/solution to the OPs challange.

So then your comments were directed at me? You're stating my answer was not reasonable? There are a lot of people reading these forums and have similar problems who come here for answers. I also answered with the caveat of sound quality loss. I also added my opinion about the device in general as a gentle push to perhaps think about a different source for the audio files that might be more 'future' compatible instead of what I consider an out-dated automotive audio interface technology.

I'm not sure why you would try and keep people on forums from providing a variety of answers, it is the collective knowledge of the community that makes the entirety of the answer better than any one person could ever achieve. Please don't try to squelch that.
 

EarlyAdopter

Active Member
Jun 24, 2012
2,832
2,095
Redmond, WA
DA conversion will happen on the main motherboard, behind the 17" touchscreen, as all of the Model S's codecs are in software (it's just Linux). There will be line-level out to the amplifier, which I believe is behind the lower driver's knee panel on the left side. I played around with some disconnected connectors back there a year ago and got some awful audio distortion, so pretty sure that's it. It's a silver metal box about the size of a paperback book with lots of wiring looms connected.

It's all custom wiring harnesses though, so some splicing will be necessary.
 

salamagd

Member
Dec 7, 2013
193
7
New York
So then your comments were directed at me? You're stating my answer was not reasonable?

I'd suggest it was more likely that HankLloydRight was referring to Hank42, who was suggesting that inferior-quality sound transmission was an acceptable solution, which is probably unlikely to meet the OP's requirements as he was specifically considering the PonoPlayer - which seems to have a slightly-better-than-average DAC as its only immediate advantage over the wide variety of other music players available.

Also, your answer raised some interesting points around devices supporting USB over analog connections like a line-out, but these interfaces are not really comparable in this case, because using a USB connection would bypass the unit's supposedly superior DAC, therefore rendering its main feature useless.
 

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