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Our brand new loaded Bolt was just delivered a few minutes ago.
Turns out "fully loaded" for Chevrolet doesn't include a CD player. We were not previously aware of this.

My husband has a 15,000+ CD collection at home that is still on physical disks and which he wants to be able to play in the Bolt. The Bolt is his car.

What would be the best option for him to play the physical disks in the car, in terms of both ease of use and audio quality ?

We have already tried to plug in a portable USB CD drive, but unfortunately, it is not supported by the car.

Please, no jokes about using 1981 technology in a 2017 car - transferring all the disks to USB flash drive/hard drive is not under consideration.
 

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Yes, you don't want to hear this.

There is software for free called "CD ripping software". It will copy the contents of CD's onto a thumb drive (USB). Then plug the thumb drive into the car.

I put about 30 albums on one with tons of room left.

I love it. Way better than a CD changer. And you can back up your music and use it anywhere.

You could put a CD changer in it, but the USB system is better.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Yes, you don't want to hear this.

There is software for free called "CD ripping software". It will copy the contents of CD's onto a thumb drive (USB). Then plug the thumb drive into the car.

I put about 30 albums on one with tons of room left.

I love it. Way better than a CD changer. And you can back up your music and use it anywhere.

You could put a CD changer in it, but the USB system is better.
I am not the one you need to convince here. My own 1000 CD collection has been ripped to a hard drive a long time ago, and I use a thumb drive in my Gen1 Volt even though it has a CD player. I have been trying to convince my husband to rip his own collection for years. This is not a battle I can win. In fact, we just spent thousands on Ikea bookcases to neatly store all of his CDs in the garage a few months ago. It covers all walls of a 3 car garage, floor to ceiling, if you can picture it. It would take an incredible amount of time to transfer them all, even if he were open to it. At 3 minutes ripping time per audio CD (which is best case, in my experience), we are talking about 750 hours or 31.25 days ripping time, doing nothing but ripping CDs 24/7. The inconvenience factor is very large, compared to just picking up a CD on the shelf and putting it in the car.

So, where could one put a CD changer in the Bolt ? And are there any specific models that integrate well with it ?
 

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I have been trying to convince my husband to rip his own collection for years. This is not a battle I can win.
He doesn't have to rip all his CDs, just the ones he actually wants to listen to in the car. It's really not that hard to do. And it's far less hassle then choosing a CD changer, getting it installed, and then having to deal with it taking up space in the car.

In the meantime, maybe you could buy him a USB stick and put some of your tunes on it...
 

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Switch vehicles with him and he will have his CD player, And you have a new Bolt EV.
 

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Unfortunately, CD players are going obsolete. Have to actually check the spec sheet for them these days.

Another option would be to check with Spotify, a monthly subscription service, but they allow streaming and offline playback (for paid subscriptions), and have a huge music collection available. One of the benefits of Spotify is they have higher bit per second streams than most (320 kbps) if you are a premium subscriber.

My personal choice would be to rip the few CDs I listened to most often (I imagine he doesn't drive around with all 15000 CDs)

However, I think you might have an auxiliary (AUX) 3.5mm jack? If so, any normal portable CD player will work, like an old Discman or something.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
He doesn't have to rip all his CDs, just the ones he actually wants to listen to in the car. It's really not that hard to do. And it's far less hassle then choosing a CD changer, getting it installed, and then having to deal with it taking up space in the car.
The ones he wants to listen to in the car changes on a daily basis. Having to get his laptop to rip that CD to USB nearly every time he gets in the car is far more of a hassle.

Which CD player/changer would work for the Bolt ? I don't see any opening in the dash where it could be installed.

In the meantime, maybe you could buy him a USB stick and put some of your tunes on it...
I have USB sticks to spare, but we have different tastes in music, so that won't work.
 

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Switch vehicles with him and he will have his CD player, And you have a new Bolt EV.
Good one ! My 2015 Gen1 Volt does have a single-disc player. But seriously though, the Bolt is his car, we're looking for a practical solution for the Bolt. Surely we won't be the last ones that want this.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Another option would be to check with Spotify, a monthly subscription service, but they allow streaming and offline playback (for paid subscriptions), and have a huge music collection available. One of the benefits of Spotify is they have higher bit per second streams than most (320 kbps) if you are a premium subscriber.
99% of his music collection is Vietnamese music that is not on Spotify. The CDs are already paid for and don't need a subscription. They are in lossless 1440 kbps format, also, not 320 kbps compressed. In any case, streaming is simply not an option here.

My personal choice would be to rip the few CDs I listened to most often (I imagine he doesn't drive around with all 15000 CDs)
Of course he doesn't drive around with all 15,000, but he changes CDs frequently, and he keeps buying new ones, too.

However, I think you might have an auxiliary (AUX) 3.5mm jack? If so, any normal portable CD player will work, like an old Discman or something.
Yes, there is a 3.5mm jack. There is also the matter of powering the player. I don't know if there is a player that takes USB power. A hardwired option would be much better to avoid dangling wires and having a portable player get in the way of the passenger seat.
 

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I plug an ancient (from 2005) Teac CD player into the Aux jack in the center console of my ELR. I too have a massive CD collection, and a boatload of mp3 files. About 1200 tunes on a thumb drive. Don't have the time to rip my entire library to hard disk, so the Teac is working fine, and is powered by USB. There are plenty of portable CD players out there, and most are battery powered. Looked around for a bluetooth option, but all I could locate were little boom boxes that are bluetooth capable.

20160419_173237.jpg
 

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I plug an ancient (from 2005) Teac CD player into the Aux jack in the center console of my ELR. I too have a massive CD collection, and a boatload of mp3 files. About 1200 tunes on a thumb drive. Don't have the time to rip my entire library to hard disk, so the Teac is working fine, and is powered by USB. There are plenty of portable CD players out there, and most are battery powered. Looked around for a bluetooth option, but all I could locate were little boom boxes that are bluetooth capable.

View attachment 128265
This approach seems like the most practical option. I'm sure there's a way to place it in the Bolt that minimizes cable visibility and risk to damaging the cables.
 

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Maybe not the very last, but you're pretty close to the end of the line, I suspect.
And very likely at the front of the line too, I think. :p

OP, outside of the previous suggestion to find a USB powered portable CD player that can be plugged into the auxiliary port, my best suggestion is to head to an automotive audio store that does lots of installs. They will hopefully have expertise in utilizing dedicated aftermarket components to add to an existing auto application, including perhaps a custom enclosure so that your new CD player will look good. Ask friends/family if any have recommendations for a local company around where you live. The difficult thing will be finding someone with experience installing aftermarket components in new automobiles that perhaps don't come with CD players and are comfortable tapping into the overall audio system. Your Bolt screen does so much more than audio that I would be very cautious.

I once had an Alpine CD player installed in a new truck. While that was great, I still had multiple cassettes and later had an Alpine Tape Deck installed also. It really didn't look too bad but still wasn't great either.

Btw, congrats on getting the new Bolt!

Joe
 

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When I buy a Bolt, I'll post my shock and surprise that it doesn't have a cassette player or an 8-track system for my huge 1970's collection. :)


That said, my 2011 Volt did come with a DVD player, another format you won't find on newer Volts or a Bolt EV.
 

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You can rip a helluva lot of music to a smartphone too, if you have, say, a 32 gig sd card in it. I ripped my entire library to my wife's phone with lots of room to spare. Then you can listen via bluetooth, no wires. My Volt syncs automatically with my phone and starts playing it's music if I select bluetooth as the source. I prefer my thumb drive though as it interacts nicely with the car's display screen.
MP3's can't compare to a well-produced CD and good player. But that's for the home system.
 

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15k CDs? Holy cow. You'd need an entire bedroom with floor to ceiling, wall to wall shelves to store them.

The solution. Buy a huge server, a robot library cd loader, load all 15K CDs onto several petabytes uncompressed, then make his own personal streaming server that he pulls through a smartphone or the car's 5g network (does the bolt come with 5G?).
 

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As noted, most new cars now do not come with a CD player (not even available as an option). They have basically gone the way of the cassette tape as far as car audio goes.

The suggestion of a portable CD player plugged into the AUX input jack is a solid one and will work well. You can find them on eBay new for under $20.00 and should easily fit in the console.
 
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