How can I let hard drives be recognized as MP3 player?

Andrew Lindsay December 14, 2010

I have a few 3.5″ 60 and 120 GB hard drives with external USB cases. Is there any way to make it so that devices, such as automobile stereos, disk players, etc. would recognize the hard drives as an MP3 player?

  1. Andrew
    December 20, 2010 at 4:33 am

    Thank you all for your input. It seems that the key is that I reformat the drives from NTFS to FAT32. That's easily enough done. Also, I'll be checking out Crutchfield. I haven't done business with them in years, but as my factory unit is dying, it may be time to check them out again.

    Thank you again,

    • Ashendens
      January 27, 2011 at 2:07 pm

      Reformating to FAT definitely worked for me. Now my Sony Xplod car radio plays all the tunes on a 40G USB Harddrive. Very cool.

  2. Anonymous
    December 16, 2010 at 6:37 pm

    format the hard drive to FAT32 file system; put songs you want on it, have a 100 watt DC/AC inverter in your car, plug in, plug USB in, turn it on, and it should read the disk!!!
    Large external USB Hard Drive Fat32 Format utility

    If your hard drive is SATA port that you just need to purchased a SATA Media Player

    For power issues USB Y cable and a cigarette lighter to usb adapter.

    Pioneer's DEH-P90HDD CD/MP3/Hard Drive receiver lets you bring a copy of your entire music collection (up to 200 discs worth) on the road!

    Sony MEX-1HD receiver's 10-gigabyte hard drive

  3. Andrew
    December 16, 2010 at 4:44 am

    Yes, I do use it as an external USB drive; for music as well as data. But I'm only accessing it on PCs. I am not familiar with the USB inputs of various other devices actually support. (Obviously the device would have to allow for USB input.) But for instance, I've seen many automobiles with USB inputs and "iPod" in parenthesis by the USB input jack. I've seen the same on various BluRay players and audio amplifiers. What I am wondering is if these non-PC devices would recognize the drive and play the music on it - or is there some special software or circuitry on MP3 players that allows these non-PC devices to recognize them as storing music? If there is special software or hardware required then can a hard drive in an external enclosure be made to mimic the true MP3 player?

    • Anonymous
      December 16, 2010 at 1:48 pm

      No extra software or hardware, The only real problem is which filesystem the drives are in.

  4. Richard Carpenter
    December 15, 2010 at 4:04 pm

    You can use the drive as a external, but the device you are connecting it to has to have a USB. It is getting more common, but you have to look for the feature. If the device does not have a USB port, there is no easy way to connect a USB/FireWire/eSata drive to a device that does not have one.

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