The Ottocast MX Wireless Adapter merges wireless Apple CarPlay/Android Auto with the convenience of AirPlay video streaming from your mobile device. Does it do this as well as expected? Read on to find out…
The Ottocast MX is a new approach to wireless CarPlay adapters. Not only does it offer wireless Android Auto as well as wireless Apple CarPlay, but the MX also dips into a unique mode where you can connect your phone to its Wi-Fi hotspot and then watch video content from your Camera Roll, Steam videos from YouTube, and browse current trends from TikTok on your CarPlay or Android Auto display.
Switching platforms is made easy thanks to its physical quick switch button, similar to their U2-X Pro adapter, which on a single press will disconnect the current mobile, freeing up the adapter for a connection from another device. On paper that sounds great, but in practice it is a little hit-and-miss. The adapter reconnects a little too swiftly (which can only be a good thing), so it’s a race to pair the 2nd device before the primary connected device reconnects to the adapter.
Double pressing this button is meant to switch to AirPlay mode. Again in practice, this function can also fail to switch as intended, but if you quickly press the AirPlay mode button on the adapter’s home screen before reconnection you can restart the adapter into AirPlay mode.
AirPlay mode is only for iOS Apple devices. Connecting to its Wi-Fi hotspot allows you to select the adapter from the screen mirroring section of the iOS screen. After a little pairing connection you’ll be presented with your phone display mirroring on your CarPlay screen. Video delay isn’t too bad when swiping between screen pages, but loading up YouTube and playing back a video resulted in quite a significant audio delay.
This may be fine for casual/passive viewing, but if you’re waiting for your EV to charge and want to watch a few YouTube videos, your experience will vary on the Wi-Fi connection, bandwidth, system performance and interference. For me, my experience wasn’t all too great. Switching to camera roll videos improved a little, but frame rates suffered and it was all a little disappointing for the MX’s main selling feature. Your own system setup and connection might perform differently for you. In my experience, AirPlay players that buffer content seem to perform better than real-time streaming content. Very few have done this right in all honesty.
CarPlay and Android Auto performed well. Connections did suffer due to the menu layer that has to load in compared to adapters that don’t do this. So power to CP/AA seems to take around 26 seconds in total, most of this is the boot time. With that said, though, unlocking and starting the car was just a few seconds before I saw the CarPlay display, so this delay is less of an issue if your car system behaves the same when unlocking and powering the USB ports before turning the car over.
Calling and music audio delay was acceptable. Interactions didn’t have too much lag to them and audio-wise the MX sounded very decent in my opinion. Calling audio had a little delay between out and incoming audio, which is good to see.
Overall, the MX from Ottocast is a decent addition to their existing lineup of adapters for CarPlay. One issue I faced during a few long drives was that on the resume of CarPlay, I encountered a couple of frozen screens. This is also an issue on U2-Air Pro and CarlinKit 5.0. adapters, so I wouldn’t chalk this issue that’s exclusive to the MX adapter, but a new issue in CarPlay in general and I hope a future update will make the experience more reliable. As for audio lag in AirPlay, I am not sure if this can be fixed as easily, so if this is a primary feature for you, it might be the case of try it and see on your system, unfortunately.
0:00 – Brief overview
0:50 – Unboxing
1:10 – Features & design
1:57 – Differences to U2-X, U2-X Pro, Play2Video Adapters
3:13 – Install & Demo
3:32 – Wireless Android Auto
4:20 – AirPlay Mode
7:36 – Wireless Apple CarPlay
9:27 – IP Config Menu
9:49 – My Impressions