Hopefully this is the best section for my question! I'm interested in ideas and opinions for portable sources with the primary purpose of in-car use.
Due to a number of factors, such as costs, time, and console design, I'm not replacing my head unit. This means I either have an FM transmitter or AUX as my options. In other words: AUX is my option. I have a GPS, but it only functions on its own speakers and I rarely use it because of some functionality complaints. It is in a dash folding mount, so it could be removed and I can easily mount another device in that space with various, generic device mounts. Obviously, I'm looking at source options. Here's what I'm considering:
1) Any recommended source that is good/great for in-car use. Music is the primary goal and only real requirement I have. Almost all of my music is FLAC. I don't want to convert it or keep different formats, so FLAC compatible is required. Ease of use and quick navigation of menus is also nice. If it's something I can trust being left in the car in the hot summers, that's also great.
2) Use my phone. The benefit is that I already have it and it's not a terrible device. It's an HTC J Butterfly. The screen is sufficiently large, I can choose from a number of media players to my liking, it's FLAC compatible, it can replace the navigation, and data access gives me even more uses. I also carry it with me, so no worries about another device or leaving it in the car. Also, I'm looking at upgrading to a "phablet" (like the next galaxy note; as large as 6") for regular use, so that gives a larger screen with more potential usability as a multimedia source.
3) A tablet. Small to medium sized. I can add it to my existing data plan for very cheap. It offers the largest screen and would be the most functional for menu navigation and as a replacement for GPS navigation. Maybe something like the Nexus 7. Biggest issue is cost and maybe size limitations.
So, what option would you say seems the best? Keep in mind, I can always use my phone for GPS, regardless of the device I end up using for music.