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All those years ago apple decided that sony had cornered the personal music player market for too long and launched the ipod. Little did we know that 'ipod' would become the new walkman. You never ask if someone has a 'personal mp3 media player' you ask if someone has an ipod.
Apples launch version was a chunky item, but even so it looked so cool. The use of a standard laptop hard drive meant that the ipod could be heard to 'spin up' on startup. Unfortunately this was also their main weakness and the cause of most of these breaking after a year or two of use.
This version was pre click wheel meaning the volume and jog buttons are physical buttons surrounding the main wheel (which actually spins rather than being touch sensitive) with the centre button used for menu selection.
Even with a tiny 5GB capacity this little machine revolutionised the way we listen to music.
The small dot matrix screen is easy to read in all light conditions but not a patch on later colour systems. Media is limited to music, with no capacity for movies although the drive could be used as storage for other files.
As this was pre dock connector, the first model featured a firewire plug for syncing with your Mac or PC, a system later dropped in favour of USB connectivity.
These days a player like this is obselete. Too large with not enough memory, but you can be assured if you have one of these, keep hold. Its value will one day great as this is a design classic.
Well done apple for defining a whole generation of personal media.
I have wanted to get an iPod for ages and ages. I remember looking at the 2G one, but thought that they were too overpriced and battery life was another turn-off! When the 3G ones were available, I still thought they were very expensive. Also, the battery life had not improved. So when the 4G version became available, I wanted one more than ever. I searched for a long time looking at places to buy, many had no stock and still did not want to pay £229 for one. Until I came across nusonline.co.uk. The Apple store for Education were offering a discount to all students or anyone involved in higher education. The link on the nusonline webpage took me to the Apple store and there it was - the 4G iPod, 20GB and for £200.93 with free delivery and free custom engraving! I jumped at the chance and ordered one straight away.
I took about two and a hlf weeks from order to receiving my iPod. I was so excited when it finally came. The box was so perfect and the iPod was lying inside so beautifully. It took a while to go through the installation of iTunes, formatting the iPod for Windows (I am running Windows XP) and transferring the music. But when that was done, my iPod was ready to go. This whole process took about 45 minutes. (I had roughly around 1500 mp3's encoded at different bit rates, varying from 128 to 320 kbps). This was all done through USB 2.0. I have a Firewire port on my computer, but it is a 4-pin socket. The cable included with the iPod is 6-pin, and so therefore an ad
At first, I was very disappointed with the sound quality from the iPod. I had not even opened the earphones that came with the iPod, as I had already knew that they are absolutely awful. They are actually one of the worst pair of earphones I had ever owned in my life. I don't know how Apple get away with this, but somehow they manage it! I was using a pair of Sony earphones that I had had for a couple of years, which were used with my Minidisc player (remember those???!!!). The sound quality was no way near what I expected. I am quite 'picky' though when it comes to sound quality, however, I would not consider myself an audiophile.
The controls of the iPod are very, very straightforward. I love the touch wheel - it is such a pleasure to use, I cannot imagine using any other method now! Selection of songs or playlists is very easy indeed. You can also make your own 'On-the-go' playlists by holding down the central select button on a song or playlist you want to add to your 'On-the-go' playlist. You can then save it or clear it, or just listen to it! One thing though - the EQ settings are not very good to be honest. There is a whole range of them available, but there still seems not to be one that agrees totally with my music. I have found the 'Latin' setting the best though. You also cannot make your own EQ settings.
One thing that I do not really like about the iPod is iTunes. I find this program, not difficult, but fidgitty to use. It does things in its own way, and takes control too much. I suppose that it is easy, but I would rather have something that gives me more control. I do, however, like the fact the the iTunes music store is 'built-in' to iTunes.
Now the more I listen to my iPod, the less the first impression of bad sound quality bothers me. It is not actually that bad, but there are certain songs that still sound slightly distorted no matter at what volume. The sound quality has also increased since I took the EU volume limiter off with goPod, a program that allows you to remove the sound or volume limiter that is place on all iPod's sold in Europe.
Now onto battery life. I really don't have a problem with it. It lasts long enough for me to play it as regularly as I like during a day. It seems to last about three days with regular use. But I try to charge it as little as possible as I heard that the battery life of the iPod impairs quite rapidly. I have also recently purchased an iTrip - an FM transmitter for your ipod, so you can tune in to the frequency and listen to your iPod in your car without wires. They are however illegal, and if caught, you can face prosecution! (Damn British broadcasting laws!).
Overall, I am plesaed that I have chosen the iPod. At the time, I was strongly considering the Sony 20GB hard disk player, but it did not play mp3's. Sony have now actually sorted their lives out and allowed mp3 playback on their new player. To be honest, the only competition that the iPod has I think is the Sony. The iRiver players are just too big and ugly. If looks is what you are after, then I would suggest the iPod. But size, battery life and probably overal quality, then the Sony. Saying that, I have never really been impressed with Sony mp3 (or should I say atrac) players. Thinking of that, the iPod is not so bad afterall! In fact, I do truely love my iPod, although it is slightly bigger and heavier than I would like it to be.
With the original Ipod design a resident in the design museum and a whole plethora of magazines,celebrities etc endoring its sleekness and ease of use, is the Ipod still the daddy of portable music now with Sony's new MD and other harddisk players such as the iRiver on the market?
Well, the simple answer is yes.
The design and athestic values of the Ipod is unrivalled, and gives it a massive edge in the modern style-concious world (although be warned that the Ipod scratches VERY easily). Although the minidisc players are still smaller, they are nevertheless still a very 'fiddly' format even with the Net MD concept. Storage space on the Ipods is also good, even the 20 gig version should provide enough space for all but the most hoarderesque of music-lovers.
The new 4th generation Ipod also improves on its predecessors' faults. Firstly, the 8 hour battery life has now been increased, and previous scare stopries about battery failure have also seemed to gone away. The click-wheel (taken from the Ipod mini) now means everything can be controlled from the central buttons instead of the four across the top as before, making the Ipod look even better. The price has also dropped to just over £200 for the 20 gig version, although it does mean Apple have taken out some of the extras such as the remote for the ehadphones and the carry case.
However, I do have quibbles with the Ipod. By making it so easy to use, I feel that sometimes I have little or no control over it, everything is masked and done automatically for you. This is a particularly big problem when somethiong goes wrong. My Ipod didnt work for a week and I had no idea what is wrong. Apple's after-sales care is also very tedious, as you have to send the Ipod away for diagnosis as the Apple stores refuse to offer support for the Ipod.
Watch out also for the new generation of media players (such as the Creative Xen) which offer movie and picture playback ability, and may end Apple's dominance.
Nevertheless, the Ipod is still probably the best mp3 player out there, and I would reccomend it to anyone with a large (1000+ songs) music collection.
I think this is a fantastic gadget. I bought one for £350, but a friend of mine had already got one for £20 from an internet list! I used to thinkg that these lists were a hoax and waste of money but after I saw his, I realised that I wasted my money. He got it in less than a month. The list is www.fr33fones.co.uk. If you sign up please use my referral number (1768-1). The way it works is that the more people sign up the sooner people get their ipods!!
I have just decided to sign up for the mobile matrix scheme and hopefully receive bith a mini anda 40gigabyte ipod. Although this may seem to good to be true its not. My friend has just received his brand new fully functional ipod. This model which i have played with and borrowed great. It looks sleek it plays sleek and i couldn't fault it apart from maybe at very high volumes the sound starts to go a bit awry. The actual ipod is very easy to work with a toggle system and touch sensitive buttons that are very receptive. the clever thing is that you can also use it for transfering other files to a friends computer and no just for playing your music. The funny thing is at 40gb it has a bigger memory than the majority of computers. Although the faces of the ipod do scratch quite easily thought to remedy this one can buy a cover that clips on, the ipod with dimensions of 2.4, 4.1 and 0.7inches it is very easily slipped into a pocket and carried around with no hassle whatsoever. i actually saw a statistic saying the ipod could be played continously for 3 weeks 24/7 and only just run out of songs to play. With the mini ipod apple have fitted all the decent features into this smaller version but, with only 4gb of memory. I think this is more than enough as I have 11gb of music on my phone and only listen to about 4/5 of it reglarly so this is a great option for me personally. Its dimensions are 3.6, 2 and 0.5 inches. this version off this website comes with a firewire and a USB 2.0 cable(as does the full ipod). On this website it only needs 15 people to sign up for the company to send out the next mini ipod. Sometimes the company even fills up the list on one side free. The problem is that it takes so long for you to receive your ipod, this is because you sign up, go onto a list and then have to wait for 25 people to sign up until the next ipod is released. This company however also do mini ipods which is a much shorter list and also all the
brand new models of mobile phones, they even do a dvd tables that is book sized and can play dvds-genius. You can move up the list through referrals from other people who sign up. This doesn't do anything to the person who refers but is completely optional and although the point of this review is not to get myself boosted up the list but, instead to open peoples eyes to what is out there, my referral number is 1702-1. This is completely optional but would be very much appreciated. The actual website is www.fr33fones.co.uk however there are lots of these sites but , this one is relatively new and they haven't started advertising yet so now is the time to get in there and put your name down. I don't think that this is a scam as I know people do get the ipods BUT, if you do sign on to the very bottom of a long list you could be in for a long wait.
I've always being rather sceptical about these internet ideas on how to get a 40GB iPod for £20, usually they're too good to be true. However, a bit less than a month a go, i signed up on a website list to get an iPod for £20. I now have my brand new iPod and I can't say I regretted it. It is quite possibly one of the best things that have ever happened to me. A first I thought it was just a hoax but now I realise that it really works! So if I were you i'd get signed up before the list gets too long at www.fr33fones.co.uk and if you are thinking of signing up use my referral number: 1675-1. Remember, the more people that sign up, the faster the list goes and the more people that get their iPod quickly.
The iPod must now be considered one of the 'must have' designer gadgets this year. Not olny is it the epitomy of style, as is Apple's emphasis, but it is also a mean package, with a bigger hard drive that many laptops and middle of the road desktops. Let me just tell those of you who are reading this and wondering ?what on earth would I want with that much space?? that this is the ultimate in music freedom. Gone are the days where you need to carry around a fistful of CD cases whenever you want to listen to some music. Sometimes don?t you get the feeling when hearing an album on a MiniDisc or CD player that you really could do with some variety. This is the ultimate benefit of the iPod. You can fit an entire CD collection on a tiny piece of kit, let it pick the songs randomly for you from a list of up to 10,000 possibilities (40GB verson)? you?re unlikely to hear the same song twice in a year!! And an even greater benefit is that you don?t actually have to have all the music yourself ? you don?t have to own the entire collection!! There are two possibilities. 1-You download tracks and albums from the award winning iTunes service at minimal cost and zero delivery time or P&P charge. Or 2- You link your iPod (as I have done on many occasions) to friends computers and nick their albums!! It couldn?t be easier or more fun!! But alas there is the one hurdle facing all prospective buyers ? the exorbitant price tag. However I have found one way of dodging this, rather than forking out on the £399. They?re called ?Matrix? schemes. Basically you pay £20 and get CD and ?signal booster? right away, but in the meantime your name is added to a list of names, and you gradually go up the list. The way it works is that you can either sit on the list and forget about it, then approximately 76 days later you?re 40GB iPod arrives. Or you can get your mates to join which makes the w
hole process move even faster. Either way, you get your iPod and are in with the crowd probably this summer if your quick about it. One website which offers this is www.ozsmobilematrix.co.uk . It?s worth a go because you?ve got nothing to loose and a brand new 40GB iPod to gain! But however you end up financing yourself I would recommend the iPod to anyone. It looks good, its functionality is great and it?s damn cool!!!
Opening the package when I got it home was a pleasurably experience. Everything was beautifully packaged, vacuum sealed in foil and clear plastic. A serious amount of time has gone into designing the box and its innards, and it shows - it's absolutely faultless. As they say, first impressions are everything and the iPod gives a good impression! Desperately scrambling through the box, I finally found across my new toy. I just could not wait to get this thing of beauty up and running! My model came with a cradle, which I immediately went to hook up to my PC that I'd fitted with a USB 2.0 card in preparation. First problem. This thing doesn't ship with a USB cable. Blindly poking the Firewire cable into the socket didn't work. iPod users with PCs have a number of choices here; get a Firewire card if you don't already have one or get a special USB cable for the iPod. The advantage of getting a Firewire card is that your iPod will charge up while you're ripping all of your CDs. However, Apple does sell a nifty little USB cable that plugs into your PC and your mains socket, allowing you to charge it in a similar way. It's pretty expensive though, and I plumped for the Firewire card option. A word of warning: USB 1.0 or 1.1 is ridiculously slow by today's standards, and it'll take hours to transfer your music, compared to minutes with USB 2.0 or Firewire. Upgrade! My iPod was shipped with iTunes, a fantastically simple bit of software with a brilliantly thought out interface. If all Apple software is this good, why are PCs still so popular? It works on Windows, although I found one minor niggle; my copy won't recognise when I put a new CD into the drive, so I have to close it down and start it up again every time. I haven't heard anybody else say the same, so I assume it's my PC that's faulty. Days after I parted with my money, my iPod was fully charged and only 25% full (10GB). I thin
k of myself as a bit fussy when it comes to sound quality, but I wasn't disappointed as many people online told me I would be. The supplied earphones are better quality than your average set, but I still chose to replace them with a pair of Sony MDR-EX71 earbuds. They cost £35, but the difference was enormous. They go right inside your ear canal and form a seal, blocking out a lot of extraneous noise. This isn't as dangerous as it may sound, as it allows you to listen at lower volumes. Plenty of previously inaudible detail became apparent, and I believe they get the best out of my iPod. They have a pretty high impedance and are quieter than the supplied 'buds, but the seal makes this irrelevant. Take note, the iPod is not an audiophile piece of equipment. People who connect top of the range Sennheiser cans or £300 Etymotic Research earbuds to their iPod and then complain that their compressed MP3 file isn't perfect make me laugh. What the iPod is is a portable music player that can carry your entire CD collection (and everybody else's for that matter) and play it back at a pretty decent quality. I rip at 320kbps AAC, just because I have the space to do so, and at its best my iPod sounds beautiful. At its best. The sound quality does have its faults, most noticeably distortion on some albums. Some of my CDs seem to disagree with the equaliser (EQ) whereas other sound perfect. My Ocean Colour Scene b-sides album sounds brilliantly transparent and open, and Jeff Buckley's voice makes you want to cry. However, the Red Hot Chili Peppers and Snow Patrol are abrasive and flat, and I have to turn the volume right down. Things get better if you turn any EQ settings off, but it seems that some bands are destined to be left off my iPod playlists. This isn't a compression problem - I've tried everything from 192kbps MP3 files to 320kbps AAC files. I've even imported uncompressed WAV files as a reference, but the distortion
still remained. These problem CDs are in the minority, but my advice would be to leave the EQ settings alone. All said, the sounds quality is perfectly adequate at worst. Remember, this is a portable device that plays back compressed music files, and that's what it does and does well. Don't get too hung up on it. The iPod's interface is simple and customisable, allowing you to move certain toggles (such as shuffle on/off) to the main menu. The games provided are pretty dull affairs, although Music quiz is quite fun. It plays random portions of songs that you've stored, and gives you multiple choice options. The faster you get it, the higher your score. It's a bit pointless and goes on indefinitely, but I found it fun for a while! My shuffle option has a great knack of picking my favourite songs, too! The iPod itself looks and feels beautiful, and the build quality is great. The touch buttons are sensitive and the scroll wheel is satisfying, and it's worth noting that by virtue of their design they are totally sealed from the environment. It's small enough to slip in your pocket, even if you opt for the slightly thicker 40Gb model. The silver back is like a mirror, but gets scratched easily. The hard belt-clip case seems to be particularly damaging, so I use the softer drawstring bag that comes in the box. Various third-party plastic sleeves are available which protect the back while retaining full functionality. Oh, and the battery life is about 8 hours - not brilliant, but functional nonetheless! Overall, I love my iPod. It does its job brilliantly and looks good too, much better than the Creative jukeboxes! A high-tech fashion accessory.
iPod is stunning as it has the best jukebox in the world, iTunes 4. This includes the itunes music store which allows you to buy music for Â£6/album when it comes out over here which should be soon. It also is fast with Firewire and USB2 ports and also it syncs automagically with your windows PC or Mac. The Mac is a better platform and it kicks ass. I also like to download songs off kazaa and put them on here...
I have a genetic predilection for gadgets. Well, that's my excuse anyway - my dad likes gadgets and so do I. So it's come as no surprise to any of my friends when I've casually mentioned the Apple iPod I recently bought. Instead, the reaction is usually eye-rolling, with maybe a sigh or raised eyebrow. Then follows the question: 'What on earth is an iPod?'. The answer I give varies, depending on the technical knowledge/attention span of the enquirer. The iPod is, by all accounts, the ultimate in portable jukeboxes. The latest models come in three different memory capacities: 10GB, 20GB and 40GB. As all gadget freaks will know, if you're going to have one, you have to have the best one, and since I have a lot of CDs to store, I went for the 40GB. This is the same size as the hard disk in my computer, so as you probably guessed, it's pretty big. Apple say it will hold about 10,000 songs, and in actual fact, even at a high quality, I would say that 10,000 is more like a minimum! The 40GB model is £399 almost everywhere - unfortunately it's a seller's market, and so unless you want to risk auction sites or places like amazon.co.uk's Marketplace, you will pay the r.r.p. Like most Apple products, you're paying for style as well as substance. Or are you? Because it was such an expensive purchase, I decided to buy mine from johnlewis.com - they have excellent price matching and returns policies! All the iPods available new are for either Mac or Windows - the iPod is formatted to whichever system you use the first time you plug it in - although after being formatted to Windows, the iPod can be changed back to Mac - one time only! So What's In The Box? --------------------------------- We live in a cynical world, admittedly, but one that's easily blinded by glamour and good looks. And upon opening the package, you can't fail to be struck by how stylish and high-quali
ty everything seems. Even the box is classy. Every component that you unpack feels solid, well built, and matches the iPod. The actual iPod is a beautiful looking thing. It's only slightly bigger than a deck of playing cards, and has a pleasing weight which feels sturdy when you're carrying it around. Even the backlight is pretty - it's a nice blue-white colour, which is fairly easy on the eyes, and the controls show up in red. The front is white and very simple, with just five touch-sensitive buttons and a scroll wheel below the relatively large LCD screen. The back is chrome effect, but beware - it scratches easily. As well as the iPod itself, you get earphones with inline remote control, a carry case, docking station, a firewire connecting cable, mains adaptor, software disk and user guide. The 10GB model, however, is more basic, and the remote control, carry case and docking station are left out, though are available for purchase separately. The extras with the higher end models are all useful, although I felt they could have been designed better. The remote control is good, but very basic, and can only be used within the current playlist/selection - it would be nice to have a small screen and a few more features so that the main operations of the iPod could be carried out. On a similar note, when using the carry case, you have to completely remove the iPod if you wish to do anything - it completely covers the controls. It would be more useful if there were windows for the front buttons and the screen. But at least it stops those annoying scratches. Most people will not have a firewire - also known as IEEE 1394 or i.LINK - port on their PC, unless they're into digital video cameras, so like me, you'll probably have to install one. They're available from all computer stores, and the cheapest one I found was £22.99 on amazon.co.uk - it just fits into a spare PCI slot. You can use USB2.0 but you'
;ll need an extra adapter, and it's not as fast to synchronise. More importantly, using the firewire port means that your iPod will charge whilst connected to the computer. So once your firewire port is installed, you're ready to go. Just plug one end of the cable into the computer, and the other end either directly into the iPod or into the docking station. Simple. What About The Software? --------------------------------------- On the enclosed software disk you'll find the iPod manager software, plus software for music management. The correct software is automatically installed when you put the disk in - iTunes if you're using a Mac, or in my case, Musicmatch Jukebox 7.5 [MMJB] for the Windows user. The software is quick and easy to install, and you will be prompted to plug your iPod in for formatting while it's installing. Here, though, was where I found the instructions sadly lacking - there is no real mention of the first time you plug in, and as a result it can be confusing and frustrating to get started - I watched the 'Do Not Disconnect' message for about three hours before unplugging it all and starting again, with the fear, whilst doing so, that I might be ruining my new toy. All's well that ends well, though, and after a couple of false starts my software was installed and my iPod formatted. I was disappointed to discover during the process that my more up-to-date version of MMJB had to be replaced by the older version provided, because the iPod plug-in was not available for recent versions. When it turned out that I also had to update the iPod software itself, I was less than impressed - this version of the iPod has not been out for long! Musicmatch Jukebox is, however, a rather fabulous piece of software. You can download a free version of MMJB 8.1 from the Musicmatch website, but you're saving nearly £40 with the iPod because you get the full version. I had
been using the basic, free version for several months prior to purchasing the iPod, and the added bonus of this was that all the CDs I have with me were already converted to mp3 on my hard drive. All I had to do was click one button, et voila! Synchronisation with the iPod is ridiculously simple, and fast too - I put over 3100 tracks on in less than an hour. It really pays to take the time to get familiar with the software first - although since the iPod comes ready charged, it's difficult to resist the temptation of jumping right in. But if you make the effort, for example, to make sure the ID3 tags are all correct on your music, it makes using the iPod easier. iTunes is also available for Windows now, from the Apple website - I downloaded this a few days after getting my iPod - but I much prefer MMJB. Some of the iTunes features work better with the iPod, though. Using both iTunes and MMJB, you can easily create playlists too, which will all be transferred on to the iPod during synchronisation. When you can fit over 10000 songs on a player, the playlist function is extremely important. So for me, the discovery that each playlist is copied in its entirety to the iPod was a huge disappointment! In effect, this means reducing the capacity of your player, because every time you add a song to a playlist, another copy of that song is made, taking up valuable memory space. One way of getting around this is to remove songs from your Music Library and add them only as components of playlists - but this then means the songs are unavailable when browsing. An improvement in this iPod on earlier models, however, is the inclusion of an On-The-Go playlist, which you can make on the player - but this is erased every time you connect to your computer, or if your battery runs out. Once you've synchronised with your Music Library once, you can add tracks and playlists manually in the future. By electing to transfer music manually, you c
an also use the iPod as a portable hard disk - great for those crisis moments when you think you've killed your computer and need to store all your data! It's very simple to do, using the bundled iPod Manager software. I should point out here that you can't use the iPod to transfer music back to a computer - Apple are very much trying to prevent fraudulent music acquisition. This, however, was another frustration for me, since half of my CDs are in my parents' house and I was hoping to store them digitally on my computer here in my flat. How About Using The iPod? ----------------------------------------- OK, so the actual iPod... You've installed the software, converted your CDs to mp3, transferred them all on to the iPod, and charged it. You're ready to go. Using the iPod is almost disappointingly simple. You get the hang of the one-handed, touch sensitive controls within minutes, and the menu system is so simple and intuitive that there's almost nothing to learn. You can browse your music collection by various methods, including album, artist and individual tracks - be warned, however, that whatever information you use to display the tracks is all you will see. This can be very irritating if you're trying to queue songs up to play on the go, and you have several songs with the same title, or different versions of the same track - you can't look at the rest of the tag information without playing the track. The touch sensitive controls are a great idea, although they can be a little too sensitive at times! I would personally add another button, and not a touch sensitive one - I would like to see a small switch to activate the backlight. Finding things on the menu in the dark is virtually impossible, and since almost everything (including the backlight) is activated through the menu by using the touch wheel, it makes it difficult to use at night! The menus are fully customisable, a
nd the sound quality is excellent. Opinion seems to be divided over whether it is improved with use of better quality headphones, but I can honestly say that they sounded great to me. They also fit very well in the ears, and don't fall out as 'earbud' types earphones often do. The only time I noticed a real degradation in sound quality was when I used the equalizer settings. There are about 20 preset equalizer settings, and none of them are much good - if you've converted your music at a high enough quality (I set mine to 192kbps) then it should sound good anyway. The other extras on the iPod include an alarm clock, three games and a contacts section which can be used via Outlook. To be honest, none of these extras held any appeal for me, and things such as the notepad and contacts can only be edited on the PC anyway, and simply viewed on the iPod. One thing to watch out for, should you decide to purchase an iPod, is that mine came with the alarm set. Every morning, I woke up to find the battery flat. The solution to this problem eluded me for some days, until one night when I was awake at midnight, and heard the iPod switch itself on! By the time I woke up every morning, the player had been going all night! Battery Life? ------------------ Battery life is another one of my grumbles with the iPod. It is advertised as having 8 hours continuous playing time and up to four weeks standby. If this were true, I would still be underwhelmed, although I understand that for so much storage, battery life has to be compromised. However, the iPod is more likely to achieve around 6-7 hours of playback, and loses all the charge in a week. The iPod comes with 32MB of cache memory, and it uses this to play the selected music, so it doesn't have to continually use the 40GB hard disk, thus saving power. This also means it has up to 25 minutes of jog-protection. However, if you like to use the forward and backward keys and gener
ally change your mind whilst listening, the hard disk will be used more, and battery life is further reduced. You'll also find that the iPod freezes for a few seconds occasionally if you chop and change your music selections a lot. The backlight is another sure-fire way of reducing your battery life, but sometimes it's essential! The battery takes 3-4 hours to fully charge when plugged into a wall socket, and achieves an 80% charge in one hour. It takes a little longer if you charge it solely via firewire. Accessories ------------------ One of the iPod's strengths is adaptability - it's important to remember that it isn't just an mp3 player - for a start, it plays almost every music file format you can throw at it, including Windows Media files. And along with using it as a hard drive by plugging it into your computer, you can also buy a range of accessories which allow you to do things as diverse as storing digital photos on the go, and making voice memos to yourself! It's also noteworthy that all this can be done at the same time - the iPod keeps all these things separate, so you can still store and listen to your music collection, whilst also transporting important files around! So, Should I Buy One? --------------------------------- Well, this might be answered by the fact that I sent mine back last week! The iPod is a great thing, and if you have loads of money then I would definitely say go for it. However, I found that it had a few too many niggling problems for me to justify spending more money than I've ever spent before in my life on it. I certainly don't rule out getting another one in the future, although I would probably buy one with a smaller capacity and just put a selection of music on, rather than my entire CD collection. I think the 20GB is probably the best value - for £50 more than the 10GB you get double the capacity, plus the carry case, docking statio
n and remote control. Ultimately, I'd put it in the category of 'What to get for the person who has everything (except an iPod)...'. And maybe when I reach that position, I'll buy myself another one! www.apple.com/ipod www.musicmatch.com www.johnlewis.com www.amazon.co.uk
I recently purchased the 10GB Windows version of the Apple iPod. Mainly due to recommendations from a colleague at work, and when i received it, i found it extremely simple to set up, and had music on the move within the first couple of hours. I had a firewire port on my PC already so it was just a case of connecting it up. The newer ones have USB2 as well as firewire though. The software that came with the iPod for the PC is called MusicMatch, and it fills the need for transferring the MP3 files to your iPod, but I would recommend you get a hold of an application called ephPod as the transfer speed difference between the supplied software and ephPod has to be seen to be believed. It is at least 2 to 3 times faster. LOOKS The iPod looks great. The clever no-moving-part touch wheel for controlling the menu options is great, and you find yourself sitting admiring the little white marvel every now and then. The underside of the iPod though does tend to scratch easily, but you can purchase protective iSkins or use the case that came with it. problem with that case is you cannot use the wheel or see the screen. FEATURES To be honest, i think the older iPod that I have is poor on the features front. Playlist management is all through the PC-based software, and not the iPod, and musicmatch was not really great for it i found. I found that the software was sneakily making multiple copies of files to get playlists to work. Again, the ephPod software made the playlist creation/management a heck of a lot easier. There is a game, (breakout kind of thing) which I have played once, and never went back to. Contact management is included (allegedly) but again, this cannot be controlled from the iPod, and is done by exporting the contacts from MS Outlook or similar. Although there are pre-set equaliser settings for the iPod, they are not customisable, you are stuck with Apples choice of settings. They suffice, let
us say! The supplied remote control on my iPod is decent enough. it does what it needs to do and nothing fancy. The screen can be backlit which is handy at night, but watch the battery power drain. SOUND I find that the sound quality I get from the iPod is fine. I usually use it on the bus, and it covers the noise of the other passengers so that will do for me. The supplied headphones are earbud ones, which don't really agree with me, but they are decent enough. They are white as well, so they kind of stand out from everyone elses. CAPACITY I have not managed to fill the 10GB disk in my iPod. I have close to 1500 songs on it, and have about a third of the space free. The 10GB is now the base model as well so it is feasible to get up to 3 times that amount now (scary how quick it is advancing) PROBLEMS I have not had that many problems with the iPod. it has needed rebooted once or twice, but it usually comes back pretty quick. One major problem looming is the fact that the battery is allegedly not replaceable. I have found one web site that say they have developed a replacement one, but this involves either taking the iPod apart yourself, or allowing this company to do it for you. Not a brilliant feature Apple!!! (Don't think this affects the new ones to be fair). It is actually not very good at reporting available battery power either as it jumps about from zero to full depending on if you are doing anything with it. NOW THE SERVICE I was most disappointed to find that only 8 weeks after I bought my iPod that Apple launched the new range, a vastly improved, thinner, larger-capacity model at a lesser price than I paid. The new models have a docking cradle as well as an improved user interface , USB support, and on-iPod playlist management. it was disappointing that they did not mention this when I wa shopping for it (i bought direct from Apple and they are
built to order, so it is not like they needed to get rid of huge amounts of stock before the new ones). Also, they have released no firmware update for the Windows version of the older iPod to bring it in line with the new ones, so 10 weeks after forking out approx. £400 on it, my iPod is obsolete. Not fantastic. Mac owners have had a firmware update, but the website says that the Windows version is coming soon (originally said early May). There is an on-line petition to try and remind Apple that people that bought the old one are still out there, and deserve to be treated right, so I will update my review if Apple do come back with an updated firmware. IN CONCLUSION From a techy point of view, i think my iPod has been surpassed now. There are better featured MP3 jukeboxes out there (Creative Zen for one), but remember I am commenting on the older iPod and not the new one. I like the iPod, it is not too heavy, does what i need to do, but it is expensive. Apples disinterest once they have our money, especially to Windows users, is very disconcerting and annoying though and probably pushes me towards not recommending the iPod, unless unlike me, you don't care if you don't get a firmware upgrade every six months.
know that electronic gizmos are not really my cup of tea , and i should rather stick to my forte in vehicle reviews.But ..this little jukebox that i was gifted last week , by a very special friend of mine , really blew my mind away!!!! Yes , I?m talking about the Apple iPOD , mp3 player . Over the years, Apple has received several design awards for its products, and the iPod takes the cake. When you open the pack, the first thing that you notice is the outer cover of the pod, which is made of shiny stainless steel on the back and a thick slab of transparent space age material on the front. The best part was that the pod weighs like a feather and fits into your pockets. There?s a very cute and futuristic knob on the front , which helps you guide yourself through the product menu. The software in it also helps you store address book info etc , though this is not something that i was looking forward to. The best part of this product lies in how fast you can get the 5 gb filled up with all the songs that you can dream about. The head phones are also of excellent quality. oh! about the price!!!!he!he!he!he!
Looks great, well made, good price if you look hard (20GB @ £279 in TCR). Unfortunately the sound quality is just not good enough. Having read the rave reviews I assumed my model must be faulty, but having borrowed a friends 10GB version I can confirm that there was no problem with the unit. Compared to other MP3 Players, the Mac seems a little thin, lacking imagery, depth and subtlety. Very disappointed. Menu system is easy enough for even the most mentally challenged, and the supplied headphones are surprisingly competent for their type when used with a better source, though can easily be improved on without great expense. Another huge drawback is that the rechargeable battery cannot be replaced with disposables, I got 3 1/2 hours from mine which I?m afraid is not good enough. Software was idiot proof also. Nice try Mac, when is the mk 2 coming? Until then I?ll stick with the albeit bigger, but better sounding Creative. 05/06/2003. I bought the mk 2 (having sold the Mk1) Unbelievable difference. O how i wish I could get my Mk 1 back. The Mk 2 is inaudible. I'm not into head banging eardrum thumping volume levels, but this is just stupid. I used it on the train and could barely make out what track was playing. An astonishing step backwards. I've sent 17 e mails to Apple and not one single acknowledgement or response. Also the new touch sensitive buttons are WAY too sensitive. Never again.
Well today was great day for me, not only did I get to explore the new iMac (see my review!) but I got to have a quick look over the new iPod (released Oct 2001), which Apple sprung on the world. I have to say, not being a fan of the earlier MP3 players this little device sure is funky. With 5gig's of storage (that's over 1000 songs) and 10 hours of playtime (no that's not standby ... that's PLAY time), the iPod will happily keep you jiving all day. Sleek and small, the chrome and white iPod is stylish and practical. Connect to your iMac via Firewire, and it launches iTunes, automatically downloads the files to your iPod and at the same time charges the battery. (1 hour for 80% charge, 3 hours for 100% charge). The dial, and buttons on the front are incredibly easy to use, so easy after an hour playing your working this toy blind. The dial is a multi control device. When a song is playing it's volume, when in menu mode it's a navigation device. Set up your categories and song details in iTunes, and they are all stored like that on your iPod. One big bonus for the iPod, is the fact that it can double as a external, portable hard drive. At a mates place, want to grab some files? Plug in the iPod, throw on the files, take them home. Obviously space is dependent on songs on the iPod, but hey what other device allows you to transport files and listen to tunes all at the same time? I guess the one minus is it's price tag. Keeping in Apple tradition, the iPod is not cheap weighing in at £300+ it'll be a while before I think I can afford one