Increasing New ITrip Range.





Introduction: Increasing New ITrip Range.

This project is about increasing the range of the newest Griffin iTrip without even breaking it open. Very easy.

Step 1: Set Up.

Set up your work area. I got all the necessary tools and then some to do this.
Necessary equipment:
-Leatherman or equivalent
-small razorblade
-some form of tape. Electrial or duct.

Optional Tools:
-Wire clippers
-Needlenose pliers
-Cutting/craft board
-cold drink

Note: Keep the cold drink away from your project. You never know what will happen if you spill a drink on an itrip. The one i'm using survived a dip in vinegar. Long story.

Step 2: The Antenna.

Now, you must locate and pull out the existing iTrip antenna. If you can't find it, then you are either using an older version of the iTrip, or mentally challenged. Use you small razor or another small object and pry the small wire out of it's recessed space. Be very careful and don't pull hard. You could pull the wire straight out of the iTrip, and that could be bad, considering that this iTrip is very hard to pull apart.

Step 3: Preparing the Wire.

Now, instead of buying wire, i've chosen to recycle an old pair of headphones. I cut a piece from the center that was fairly long, and cut off the jack. I'm putting those aside for another project if necessary. Now, since inside of this wire, there are three more pieces of wire, we cut what we need.

Step 4: Preparing the ITrip.

Now you must strip the antenna without pulling it out. This is most easily done with the small razor. You must try to cut along the wire, then try cutting underneath, until there is little to no plastic sheath.

Step 5: Wrapping the Antenna.

Now you must wrap the twisted copper wire around the silver antenna wire. The way I did this was by passing the copper wire over and under the wire. It is at this point that I got distracted by Star War: Episode III. The scene was Anakin fighting Obi-Wan. That is why I have to re-use a photo.

Step 6: Finishing Up.

Now, I used three pieces of smaller copper wire and wrapped it around the silver antenna. I used the eletrical tape at this point. I cut the piece just shorter than the length of the antenna wire, then cut it in half. One half I put underneath the wire and wrapped it, and the second part I put over that, taping it to the side. Since the wrapped wire is larger than the recess in the iTrip, it won't fit. You must tape the antenna wire to the iTrip or else run the risk of getting something hooked on it, and possibly pulling it all out.

Step 7: Finished Product.

Now is the testing phase. Before, I used to have to place the iTrip within a half-foot radius of the antenna of my radio. Now I have more than octupled(8x) the effective range of my iTrip. One step further back, and the fuzz starts setting in. Good luck in doing this on your own. It took me about an hour of hard work, so expect to take about that long.



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    Interesting hack. I was hoping for something that would increase range without the wire mod. But I'm guessing what i want would also take more power. From what i found Effective range depends not only upon the itrip but the receiver. I have mine playing across my house at the moment. Its in my room on my stereo (reception just fine except when i go into special places not between the radio and the itrip) 60 ft away is my stereo playing the itrip (no distortion) but between the two is a radio with (about halfway between) and its reception is terrible. Just remember to make sure your receiver is setup well before you go and mod your itrip.

    do you think you could attach something greater / bigger/ mightier to make it crazy stong? like, useful strong?

    2 replies

    I suppose, but how big are you thinking?

    more than 30 ft, anyway... i guess i was just wondering if apple has (accidentally?) provided a tiny simple device that could replace some of the other bulkier traditional gear involved in micro-broadcasting: if you just rigged a real antenna to it, think there's a technological limit to signal strength? speaking hypothetically, of course; all within the letter of the law; for the moment (for the sake of understanding the gear) i am thinking only of the technological possibilities...

    I did this but i used a longer wire (1 foot) and i didn't tape it. the antenna was soldered inside the itrip, then i tied a knot to keep the wire from being pulled out, i can get like 30 feet maximum

    hey, can i jsut solder a piece of wire on to it?

    WOO HOO!!! it works. YES I KNEW I COULD DO IT! yeah it still works after i slit the original wire. I don't have any solder around to fix it with so i'm excited. Little buzz, but its up and running at 87.0

    dude, cool guide! i have the iTrip, i guess 1 gen up from that, the antenna is in the same place, but it's different, it follows the contour of the backplate around the corners and -- but that's not really important! the point is i've seen a bunch of old guides for the OLDER iTrips the used to plug in on the top of the iPod, but this was the first that applied to my model iTrip. Just what i was looking for! works great! Much stronger signal in my car now, tough in LA with all radio wave pollution, thanks!!

    1 reply

    No prob man. Just make sure to set it to the channel with the least audio pollution as well. I know that's probably difficult in LA, but that ensures that you get a better sound.


    I can say that I honestly have no clue what you're talking about.

    2 replies

    Sorry, i mean the beautiful sheet metal filing cabinet with ball beared push loading drawer, Kardex ist the brand. It's a Faraday hull, where cellphones get less GSM signals in it. So the HF output power increase to the maximum. In that case you can measure the endurance of the batterie power in the worst case ;-)


    Hm. Good to know for when I get my new cell phone. Thanks. However I do find your knowledge of file cabinets disturbing.

    Hey, you have a good "KARDEX" in your room! Inside a Kardex is a good place for test cellular phone standby time ;-)

    So if I understand it, the half wavelength of 88.1MHz is
    299,792,458 (m/s) / 88,100,000 (Hz) ) * 39.37 (in/m) ) / 2 = about 67 inches.

    Shouldn't this be the length of the antenna?

    2 replies

    yeah if you want to trip over your antenna. It'll resonate enough if you cut that by half... 30 inches targeting the lower general bandwidths of your FM spectrum.


    ... Yeah, I failed intermediate algebra in high school. Twice. I blame this on the stupid idea to have classes that require extreme brainpower in the morning. Anyways, another way to make this work better would be to disconnect the antenna wire from your antenna/remove your antenna, that way the radio only picks up intermediate to short range transmissions, such as your iTrip.

    what are the other wires used for? did u just wrap the other three around the original copper already around the silver wire?

    it is adjusting the resonant frequency of the antenna, as far as the radio waves are concerned. the most efficient transmission antennas are those that have an electrical length that is an integer multiple of the transmission wavelength. this is a 'hack' of an adjustment that gets the itrip's purposely poorly designed antenna closer to the resonant frequency of FM radio. it is purposely the wrong length to comply with part 15 of the FCC rules (that's a guess.) If you wanted to do this perfectly, you could pick a frequency, work out its wavelength, then create an antenna that is the exact right size and run the antenna up the back of the ipod to align the polarity of the antenna with the polarity of most FM radio reception antennas. as far as antennas that receive radio transmission: the bigger the better.

    1 reply

    can you make an instructable for this? Because i understand what you are saying i just have no idea how to do it.

    here.(image attatched) Not as good as if it were soldered, but way better than a human anntenna.