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Harman Kardon Drive+Play 2

Use your iPod® with any car stereo

12 Reviews

Item # 108DP2US

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Our take on the Harman Kardon Drive+Play 2

Harman Kardon's Drive + Play 2 (DP2) offers easy integration of your iPod with any car stereo. Just connect your music player to the DP2, then use the DP2's wireless controller and full-color display to access your music, while the DP2 pipes the music into your car stereo.

Harman Kardon's Drive + Play 2 (DP2) offers easy integration of your iPod with any car stereo. Just connect your music player to the DP2, then use the DP2's wireless controller and full-color display to access your music, while the DP2 pipes the music into your car stereo.

Easy-to-see display looks similar to your iPod's
The display unit features a 3-1/2", high-resolution, full-color screen, so it's easy to select playlists and songs. A light sensor adjusts the brightness automatically, so the display stays legible during the day, but won't be too bright at night.

You can search for songs by artist, folder, or title. Search through your entire music library quickly with the DP2's Alphabet Search feature; use it to jump to any letter of the alphabet, then search within the songs or artists that begin with that letter.

Wireless control knob mounts almost anywhere
The DP2's control knob works similarly to an iPod's click wheel, so it's a cinch to use. Twist the knob to scroll through the menus, and press the buttons to play, pause, fast-forward, or reverse. Since it's wireless, you can mount the control knob in any convenient spot without worrying about having to hide a cable.

Hooking it up — all of the connections go to one place
The cigarette lighter power adapter houses all connections for the display, your iPod, and the output line to your radio, so everything routes to one place. A built-in FM transmitter delivers the audio to your car's stereo system if your radio doesn't have an auxiliary input. If you prefer a more permanent setup, you can hardwire the power connections and hide the Media Hub behind the dash or in the console. To help make hardwiring easier, the cigarette lighter plug snaps off to reveal a connection for an included wiring harness.

Music by genre
The DP2 keeps track of the songs you listen to and organizes the music by genre, creating its own playlists called "channels." You can further customize the channel content by telling the DP2 to include more or less of particular genres of music.

Product Highlights:

  • control system for using your iPod with any car stereo
System Components
  • full-color, dash-mountable display with customizable graphics and automatic brightness adjustment
  • remote-mount, wireless control knob with 5-button navigation
  • Media Hub houses connections for display, iPod, line-out to the stereo, a plug for an optional expansion module, and removable 12-volt power adapter
System Features
  • controls all iPod functions from the wireless remote controller
  • real-time song searching and playback
  • alphabet search for fast playlist navigation
  • charges iPod while connected
  • includes harness for hardwiring power and ground connections
  • connects to any factory or aftermarket stereo via the internal wireless FM transmitter, wired FM modulator, or auxiliary input connection
  • connects to all dockable iPods (system uses the connection cable that came with your iPod)
  • warranty: 1 year
  • Our 60-day money-back guarantee

What's in the Box:

  • Display panel with attached swivel base
  • Control knob
  • CR2032 Lithium battery
  • Cigarette lighter hub
  • 40" Power cord with attached cigarette lighter adapter
  • 21" Hardwired power harness
  • FM modulator with 11" antenna cable on one end (male Motorola terminal) and a 41" audio cable on the other end (3.5mm mono miniplug)
  • 8.25' Audio patch cable with 3.5mm stereo mini plug on each end
  • 8.25' Display cable with proprietary hub connector on one end and a 12-pin DIN plug on the other end
  • 40" iPod cable with dock connector on one end and a proprietary hub connector on the other end
  • iPod-USB adapter
  • 2 Mounting plates (one for display/one for control knob)
  • 10 Self-tapping screws (length=3/4")
  • Six 5.5" Cable ties
  • 3mm Allen wrench
  • 1.5mm Allen wrench
  • 2 Adhesive mounting pads
  • 2 Alcohol cleaning pads
  • Quick-Start Guide
  • Warranty/On-line registration card

Harman Kardon Drive+Play 2 Reviews

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(12 Reviews)
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Product Research



Overview: The Harman/Kardon Drive + Play 2 Mobile Media Manager allows you to integrate a dock connector-equipped iPod with any car stereo. Any iPod with a dock connector can be controlled by the system. The system includes a cigarette lighter hub, a wireless controller knob, and a full-color display.

Cigarette Lighter Hub: The cigarette lighter hub is the brain of the system. It provides power to the iPod and display, receives commands from the wireless controller knob, sends control signals to the iPod, sends data to the display, and contains a wireless FM modulator. There are three jacks on the hub: one for the display cable, one for the iPod cable, and a 3.5mm audio output jack. You can power the hub by directly plugging it into a cigarette lighter/12-volt power outlet in your vehicle, or by using the cigarette lighter extension cable, or by directly hardwiring the hub using the supplied 3-wire harness. The audio output jack can be used with the supplied wired FM modulator or to send audio signals to your car stereo's aux input.

FM Modulator: The unit's FM modulator can be operated wired or wirelessly. The output can be set to any frequency from 88.1 to 107.9 MHz. You can set up to 10 frequencies as presets to allow you to quickly change the modulation frequencies.

Display: The Drive + Play 2's 3.5" full-color display shows the same information, in the same format, as your iPod's display. If your iPod displays album art, the art will be displayed on this unit. You can customize the display to any of five color "themes": blue, green, orange, red, or yellow. The display can also have a Day or Night mode, or it can be switched to Auto and change according to the time of day. The brightness can be adjusted from 1 to 16, and the backlight timer set to 10 seconds, 30 seconds, or Always On. The display can be mounted to your dash, using the supplied screws for the display base, or with the supplied adhesive pads. The display cable is over 8 feet long, giving you multiple mounting options.

Main Menu: The unit's main settings menu lets you customize the system to your tastes and lifestyle. The menu can be displayed in 3 languages: English, French, and Spanish. There are settings for the FM transmitter, Display, Audio, Control Knob Acceleration, Screensaver, and Firmware updates. The settings menu also includes a legal statement and an "About" section to describe the version of the system's applications.

Screensaver: The display has a screensaver mode that can be turned on or off. When activated, you can select a 1 minute, 5 minute, or 10 minute timeout. The screensaver is a "demo" of 11 slides about the unit's features. The slides can be set to change at 5 second, 10 second, or 20 second intervals. Once you press a button on the controller knob, the screensaver turns off.

Control Knob: The control knob mimics the functionality of your iPod's click wheel. It has a dial that turns 360° both clockwise and counterclockwise and five buttons in the same positions as the menu, forward, backward, play/pause, and select buttons on the iPod. The idea behind the design is that you'll be able to reach for the control knob and make changes without taking your eyes off the road. The control knob also gives you complete control over the iPod (just like the controls on the iPod). The control knob operates in the 2.4GHz frequency range, and is powered by a CR2032 battery (included).

Adjustable Knob Speed: In the settings menu, you can adjust the speed at which the iPod responds to the turn of the control knob. You can select fast, medium, or slow.

Letter Search: You can quickly search for your music using the unit's fast letter search feature. With the press of a button, you can activate the letter search feature, turn the controller knob until the first letter of the song title or artist name appears, then press the button again and search for your selection.

Playback Options: This unit gives you the following special playback options for your iPod:

  • Automatic Mix: The system creates music "channels" automatically, letting you refine the channel content during playback. As you listen to the mix, you can prioritize selection using the "More Like This" or "Less Like This" commands. You can also choose to "Play Something Else" to reprioritize selections to something different than the currently playing song.
  • "Keep Playing"/"Jump To" Options: This feature allows you to continue playing songs from the current artist or album without leaving the "Now Playing" screen. Selections include:
    • Keep Playing Artist: continues playing the current song, then plays the remaining songs by that artist in order.
    • Jump To Artist: stops playing the current song and begins playing all the songs of that artist in order.
    • Keep Playing Album: continues playing the current song, then begins to play the remaining songs on that album in order.
    • Jump To Album: stops playing the current song and begins playing all the songs on that album in order.

USB Adapter: The Drive + Play 2 comes with an adapter that allows you to connect and play USB flash drives loaded with music files, as well as USB-based portable music players. The adapter has a female iPod dock connector on one side and a female USB Type A connector on the other. USB flash drives and cables plug right in.

Optional Accessories: The Drive + Play 2 is Bluetooth compatible. With an optional Bluetooth cell phone kit you can add hands-free Bluetooth phone capability with complete phonebook and caller ID.


Dimensions: The components of the Drive + Play 2 have the following dimensions:

  • Display: Width=4.37", Height=2.827", Depth=0.815" (2.814" w/mount)
  • Control Knob: Diameter=2.121", Height=1.478"
  • Cigarette Lighter Hub: Width=2.23", Height=1.812", Depth=4.282"

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