JustConnect JustDAB Plug and Play DAB & DAB+ In-Car System review

Well-priced, super-clean & clear DAB reception, plug ‘n’ plays your own music, charges devices, 12 or 24-volt

Screen would benefit from being bigger, preset buttons needed

JustCONNECT JustDAB?

JustConnect JustDAB Plug and Play DAB & DAB+ In-Car system review

JustCONNECT are here to save car drivers. From what? The boredom of outdated and limited FM radio stations, as well as having to listen to old scratched CDs over and over again, that’s what. Great, but how? They sell and install a selection of high quality aftermarket DAB+ (Digital Audio Broadcasting) radio and Bluetooth car kits and integrated solutions, so you can bring any car fully up-to-date.

While a fair amount of new cars do come with built-in DAB and Bluetooth, many still don’t and if you want either of those, they’re usually a costly option. In fact, testing new cars constantly we’re surprised how many – even high-end ones – still lack DAB!

Here’s the scenario: you’ve bought an older car that has a a CD player and an FM radio. And that’s it for your in-car entertainment. In the past perhaps you’ve tried a couple of options on running Bluetooth through a cheap FM-type product, but you’re always left disappointed, and you’re feeling left out of all that digital radio goodness (DAB stands for Digital Audio Broadcasting).

You want a solution that’s easy to install and simple to use but still gives you a quality sound? JustCONNECT- a UK firm specialising in DAB+ audio solutions for cars – reckon they’ve got the perfect piece of kit for you with the JustDAB portable ‘plug & play’ system. Let’s see how it does…

Test time

JustConnect JustDAB Plug and Play DAB & DAB+ In-Car system review

Right, this is simple (and brilliant) enough: As long as you have a 12-volt socket in your car (and a stereo, obviously), with the JustDAB system you’ll be able to receive DAB radio.  Oh, and you can also play music from your smartphone or MP3 player thanks to the AUX-in, and charge your device while doing so too! Great stuff – that means there’s no need to remove the JustDAB to charge your phone or other device.

The JustDAB consists of a flexible neck with a 12/24 volt plug at one end, a small colour screen with four buttons at the other. Simply plug the Just DAB into your power socket and its clear 1.44” (37mm) colour screen comes to life and immediately searches out all available digital audio channels. You also get an thin aerial and some suckers to install it around the edge of your windscreen, though we opted to permanently fit the aerial behind the A-pillar trim.

JustDAB plugs into your 12V (it’ll also do 24V if you’re a trucker) power socket and the flexible neck supports the screen. After plugging the JustDAB in and running the aerial up to the windscreen, it automatically found and tuned into all the available DAB stations – a nice touch.

JustConnect JustDAB Plug and Play DAB & DAB+ In-Car system with iPhone plugged in.

Now the JustDAB needs to get the DAB+ signal to your stereo. To do this it broadcasts an FM signal which you tune your stereo into. We were initially dubious of a DAB+ signal being broadcast over an FM transmitter to the cars radio as we’ve tried these sort of systems before and found the resulting sound quality is usually poor. Thankfully the JustDAB is very different. and the sound quality was very good with no interference.

If you have an AUX-in socket on your car stereo (it looks like a headphone socket) you can hook the JustDAB up with a 3.5mm cable that comes supplied. This should give you an even better sound quality and eliminate any chance of interference.

So, how good is it? We tested the system in a couple of cars, the first one being a 2002 Honda Jazz which has just a tape deck (!) and FM radio. The epitome of unentertaining. However, tuning one of the preset stations to link up to JustDAB we were absolutely amazed – gobsmacked even – by the way the digital radio came through in crystal-clear quality, as did the music streamed from our iPhone.

The flexible neck of the JustConnect JustDAB Plug and Play DAB & DAB+ In-Car system review

JustCONNECT use Corus technology in their products, which is an advanced receiver which is capable of receiving DAB/DAB+ broadcasts. This means you can use JustDAB all over the world, wherever standard DAB or DAB+ is used for broadcasting radio.

This is excellent for if you’re going on a driving holiday, as it’s a quick five minutes to set up the system up in your rental car, ensuring your road trip is made that much better when you can play your favourite tracks and playlists. The JustDAB itself is small enough to fit in a glovebox, armrest holder, or door pocket, so there’s no need to worry about it being on view when you’ve parked up and left the car for a while.

Some may be thinking that because the JustDRIVE system uses an FM frequency to transmit the DAB and music from your device, it may hinder the quality. Be assured, the JustDAB is certainly not some cheap, second-rate product you’d get from an internet auction site or large-scale buyers. After talking to the guys at JustCONNECT it became clear that they’d made sure only the very best components and electronics have been used for any of their products.

This is clear in the build quality, as it looks and feels well made and solid. As a bonus, the JustDAB comes with 8 mobile phone charging adaptor nibs for charging different handsets. Important ones for us were the micro USB connector for most Android devices, the Lightening connector for the iPhone 5 and later versions, plus the 30 pin Apple connector that will fit earlier iPhones, iPads and iPods. You also get plenty of connectors to cover the vast majority of other phones. Very handy indeed!

JustConnect JustDAB Plug and Play DAB & DAB+ In-Car system review

Can the JustDAB  be improved in any way? Yes, and here are our thoughts: the screen’s clarity is good, but we felt it needs to be slightly larger (perhaps to 2 inches) in order to make it easier to read when driving. You can only go forwards or backwards through the 25 automatically-tuned digital stations, and it would be better to have buttons for at least a few preset stations.

Finally, because there’s a few wires to either plug in or coming out of the JustDAB, it can look a little messy. To make it less so, we suggest at least running the aerial under the dash and up the A-pillar to keep it out of sight. If you want DAB and Bluetooth but don’t want it on view, we’d go for the JustCONNECT JustDRIVE system instead.

Price

(prices correct Nov. ’14) The JustDAB system costs £65.00, and we think that’s a very fair price. You’re getting a high quality product which uses the best Corus technology enabling the system to receive DAB and DAB+ stations cleanly and clearly, plus the fact you can use it to play tunes from your smartphone or other device as well as charge it at the same time. There are other plug-in DAB system out there, but if you want one that is anywhere near as decent as the JustDAB you’re looking at paying at least £30 – £50 more.

JustConnect JustDAB Plug and Play DAB Car Radio verdict & score

JustConnect JustDAB Plug and Play DAB & DAB+ In-Car system listening to BBC Radio 6

After testing it thoroughly, we believe the JustCONNECT JustDAB system is an absolutely brilliant piece of tech. The DAB and DAB+ stations come through crystal-clear, and the bonus is that you’re able to play music from other devices through it too, as well as charge them. The fact that it’s portable means you can switch it between vehicles without and problem, you can use it anywhere in the world (within reason), and that it’s both 12 and 24-volt compatible, meaning that truckers can use it as well.

While there’s room for a little improvement in certain areas (bigger screen would be good, as would some preset buttons), overall the JustDAB is superb and a great price too.

Usability  9
Price  9
Design  8.5
Quality  9
Overall Score  9.0 / 10

Specs

Kit  JustConnect JustDAB Plug and Play DAB Car Radio
Kit includes  JustDAB, instruction & quick start guide, 8 charging adaptor nibs for smartphones etc, USB lead for charging nibs, 2 window suckers for aerial, 3.5 to 3.5 AUX lead
Options you should spec  N/A
 Fits  Any car with a 12-volt or 24-volt power supply
Price (Correct: Nov. 2014)   £65.00
Features  25 automatically-tuned DAB & DAB+ stations, plays music from smartphone/mp3 player, charges devices
Buy from  If you wish to advertise here, please leave a comment below with your details

Words: Chris Davies | Photography: Chris Davies, Matthew Davies

2 responses to “JustConnect JustDAB Plug and Play DAB & DAB+ In-Car System review”

  1. Stuart Rogers

    Hi Chris, an update on my SEAT Toledo 1.4 Tsi SE Dsg 2013, still cannot get over how many people have a good stare at me when driving or parked up. The colour is a big part of it Ocean blue, everyone loves it. Plus positive comments on design/looks and the interior and specification. I am well happy, Running around she is averaging 38 to 40 mpg and improving all the time. Last week I visited friends and family in the Midlands and over good A roads and dual carriageways she was returning 49 and 53 mpg and no doubt I can improve that even further. I find the seats very supportive and comfortable even after 3 hours driving. Good stereo, great sound easy to set up. USB is even better with the amount of tracks you can load onto it, a great variety of music at my disposal.
    I like the style of this Toledo, I think she looks good from all angles and with it’s enormous boot (hatchback) I am amazed at what I can get in it. The DSG auto box is superb, and mated to this 1.4 engine it works really well.. I was surprised with the power of this motor when pulling away and overtaking, a gentle kick down and she flys pushing you back into your seat. So, so far so good I fitted some Toledo sill protectors to protect the paintwork when getting in and out. A fiddly job but well worth it. and looks good too.
    My Toledo has everything on it spec wise, the advantage of buying an ex demo model, I just missed the Sat Nav version. But would prefer an external Sat Nav system I think they are better.
    The only things I would have liked were folding mirror’s, and my only real gripe is not having switches for the rear electric windows on the drivers door, it just has a locking switch, other than that I have the 17 inch alloys which are nice and adds to the looks the spare is a 15 inch full size steel wheel. I don’t feel that is right but SEAT tell me it is. So I would have to buy either a matching Alloy (silly money) or 17 inch steel.
    Well that is all for now, I hope any one who reads this finds it helpful and can contact me should they wish. Don’t believe all the reviews with regards to the Toledo. Just go to your nearest SEAT dealer and drive one, you will be surprised, honestly it is that good. Car Products Tested for me provide the best and fairest reviews, tks, bye for now.

  2. Chris Davies

    Hello Stuart.

    Thanks very much for the update. Excellent choice, and you’re right in getting the ex-demo car as it saves a stack of cash and you usually get the high-end model they use to impress potential buyers. We’ll have to test the Toledo at some point, but for now your update is keeping us informed. 😉

    Thanks for the compliment about the reviews – that’s what we aim for.

    Cheers,
    Chris – Editor

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