Best Overall for Sound Quality:
Nulaxy Wireless In-Car Bluetooth FM Transmitter Radio
The Nuxlay works with virtually any Bluetooth-enabled device, from your tablet to your smartphone. The device goes the extra mile with its included 5V-2.1A charging port, auxiliary port and even built-in microphone so you can take incoming calls with a breeze.
Users love the overall power and setup of the Nuxaly, with the most complaints coming from the rare occurrence of a pairing issue.
Runner-Up, Best Overall: Nulaxy Bluetooth Car FM Transmitter
With a sleek design that blends right into the background, Nulaxy’s Bluetooth car FM transmitter is a smart choice. Large menu buttons control the main functions of the transmitter, with seven buttons in total for channel selection, pause/play, shuffling music and making/answering calls. Incoming calls are displayed via a caller-ID-like feature on a 1.44-inch LED display. The display also shows the selected channel as well as signal strength and which device is currently connected.
The body of the transmitter can be angled up to 135 degrees in either direction for finding the best visibility while driving. Compatible with a variety of devices, the transmitter plugs into any car cigarette lighter or 12V auxiliary outlet. Once plugged in, it only takes a moment to connect it to your device via Bluetooth. Alternatively, Nulaxy provides a wired 3.5-mm cable for non-Bluetooth devices, as well as a TF card slot. Music can be installed on the TF card for offline listening, although the shuffle and repeat modes don’t work when played offline.
Best Sound Quality: Aphaca Wireless Bluetooth FM Transmitter
This car FM transmitter delivers crystal clear sound to deliver high quality audio when connected to your iPhone via Bluetooth. CVC technology delivers a duplex sound with noise cancellation technology to produce the most faithful reproduction of sound possible when accounting for radio interference.
In addition to stellar sound quality, this Bluetooth transmitter wirelessly transmits calls from mobile to the stereo system and can switch to handsfree mode from music whenever someone calls you. With Bluetooth 4.2 it picks up new devices easier than ever before. It also has a sleek elegant design with blue LED lettering. Finally, you can play music from 206 stereo channels or even from a MicroSD card.
Best Budget: JETech Wireless FM Transmitter Radio Car Kit
When it comes to FM transmitters, there’s not a huge price difference between the top-of-the-line and the budget. In fact, it might only come down to a few dollars. But the JETech Wireless transmitter will save you a few bucks while still getting its job done. To use it, simply connect your device via its 3.5mm headphone jack, set it to a random FM channel and tune your radio to that channel. (Remember that it won’t work with an iPhone 7, which ditches the headphone jack.)
The transmitter has an easy-to-read display with intuitive buttons for adjusting frequency. It also comes with an extra USB port, so you can charge devices while driving. For best performance, we recommend using lower channels in the 80s and 90s.
Best for Dual Charging: Hands Free Bluetooth FM Transmitter by LIHAN
Want a functional Bluetooth FM Transmitter that comes with two USB charging inputs? LIHAN makes a no-nonsense device that gets straight to the point.
The Hands Free Bluetooth Transmitter by LIHAN features a 3.1A and 1A input offering both 12v and 24v charging for both you and a passenger. This means that your mobile devices can be charged in a jiffy all while listening to your favorite music. Its wireless Bluetooth 4.0 connectivity also offers low power consumption with a 5 percent loss of battery to your device each hour. Like many transmitters on the list, it includes a microphone for hands-free calling.
Buyers from Amazon praise the product for its ease of use and adaptability. More critical reviews noted that the connectivity could sometimes be an issue.
Best for Calling: Criacr Bluetooth FM Transmitter
For a gadget that gets down to business, check out the Criacr Bluetooth FM transmitter. It offers full FM radio frequency range from 87.5 to 108.0MHz, which is more than most other devices support, thus decreasing interference. It also has two USB ports for dual charging when your gadgets get low on power. If you receive an incoming call, you can easily answer by pressing the dedicated call button and using the built-in microphone. And you don’t have to worry about surrounding sounds interrupting your conversation because the mic uses CVC technology to diminish noise and wind.
Best Features: Otium Bluetooth Wireless Radio Adapter Audio Receiver
Considering most iPhone FM transmitters hover around the same price range, the main thing that differentiates them is feature controls. The Otium FM transmitter bests all others when it comes to that category. With near universal compatibility, the transmitter works with all devices that have a 3.5mm headphone jack. (Sorry, newer iPhone owners.) It has a built-in microphone that enables hands-free calls and music streaming via Bluetooth, plus a USB port to let you charge up your other devices, even tablets. Its high-contrast 1.44-inch LED display shows information such as voltage of storage battery, song info, caller ID and more. Its controls are highly intuitive and Amazon reviewers note that it feels solidly built.
Best Design: LDesign Wireless Bluetooth FM Transmitter
Looking for a unique style and design on par with Apple’s products? The LDesign comes in a variety of colors and is shaped like an L. It’s only 4.9 x 1.5 x 3.8 inches, so it’s small enough to fit in your front pocket. It comes with HI-FI stereo sound quality with echo cancellation and noise suppressing (CVC) technology. This means you can take in a call with its built in microphone and enjoy your music at a lowered volume without any overlapping sound interferences.
Besides its wireless capabilities, the device offers a TFcard and auxiliary input, so you can play music in your preferred method. It also comes with a 5V 2.5A USB port for quick charging. Buyers praise it for its design and ease of setup, while more critical reviewers state it’s prone to sound interference if your phone isn’t positioned in close proximity.
Most Adjustable: GOgroove FlexSMART X2 Bluetooth FM Transmitter
The GOgroove FlexSMART X2 has a gooseneck design that plugs directly into any DC outlet and allows you to find the ideal angle for reading the display. Once in place, the transmitter can sync up to two devices simultaneously for broadcasting music from multiple iPhones. The central knob rotates to navigate through available FM channels and switches to volume control when pressed. Placed around the knob are three buttons that work to play/pause audio, fast forward, or skip backward.
On the right-hand side of the transmitter is the monochromatic LED display that shows the currently selected FM channel and volume level, as well as a pair of buttons for answering and ending incoming phone calls. A five-volt USB port is available for charging most smartphones if the transmitter is using one of your existing car charging ports.
Best All-in-One: Mpow Bluetooth FM Transmitter
The Mpow Bluetooth FM transmitter is a “jack of all trades” that delivers plenty of functionality at an attractive price point. Designed to connect directly to an air vent, the 360-degree rotation of the Mpow makes it an excellent option for viewing GPS directions while driving or safely changing radio stations. The built-in FM transmitter supports a frequency range of 87.5MHz to 108.0MHz and can connect to up to two Bluetooth 4.1 devices at once. The built-in microphone adds even more function with support for hands-free calling along with a 2.1A USB charging port for keeping your phone powered up. And it does all this while playing back music via FM channels. The adjustable fit of the clamp works with most smartphones ranging from 2.1 to 3.2-inches in width. Rubber padding on the grip protects your device from scratches.
How We Tested
Our reviewers spent 10 hours testing one of the top-rated FM transmitters available. To really get the full picture, our testers connected it in their cars and listened to their favorite tunes for hours at a time. We asked our reviewers to consider the most important features when using this transmitter, from its display to its special features (like USB ports). We’ve outlined the major takeaways here so that you, too, know what to look for when shopping.
What to Look for in an FM Transmitter
Display – The most basic transmitters don’t have displays, but units with screens are easier to set up and use. Some even have caller ID or can show other important information when connected to your iPhone.
Connectivity – FM transmitters use audio jacks, USB, and Bluetooth to connect to phones. If you have a newer iPhone that doesn’t have an audio jack, make sure to get a transmitter that has a USB port or Bluetooth that’s compatible with your phone.
Hands-free calling – If you go with a Bluetooth transmitter that has a hands-free mode, you’ll be able to make and receive calls without taking your hands off the wheel. Transmitters with this feature are also capable of muting or pausing your music during a call and starting it back up again when you’re done.
Test Results: Nulaxy Wireless In-Car Bluetooth FM Transmitter Radio (Best Overall)
What We Like
- Easy setup
- Great sound quality
- USB charging port
What We Don’t Like
- Gooseneck arm is too short
- Screen is not bright enough
“This transmitter was extremely easy to set up,” raved one of our testers, “and once we identified a clear channel to use on the radio, it connected immediately.” Once the device was connected, our reviewers found that streaming music sounded great and that there was no static. In terms of design features, this device’s USB port proved very convenient for our testers, so they could charge their phones while listening. However, our reviewers did wish that one part of this transmitter was designed differently. “The posable arm is a little short,” one explained, “so it can get in the way of other elements in the car like a shifter or middle console.” Our reviewers also wished the device’s screen was brighter.