Archives For ipod

accessories, accessorise

November 29, 2004 — Leave a comment

With the growing popularity of the ipod, so have the number of accessories grown exponentially, with a new item almost daily, ranging from the ridiculous; ipod socks; to the sublime; the iTrip. Today, I`ll  try to cover some of the more coveted accessories for ipod owners.

For drivers that own ipods but no longer have cassette players in their cars, there is the iTrip. The iTrip is an FM transmitter that plugs directly into the ipod and broadcasts through the radio in your car on any available FM frequency, it also pulls power from any ipod, thus requiring no extra cables. The iTrip retails for US$35 and is manufactured by Griffin Technology. Griffin also manufactures the US$40 iTalk; which turns the ipod into a voice recorder and the RoadTrip, which adds to the functionality of the iTrip with the addition of a charger, cradle and buttons to change your broadcast channels,

recommended retail price; $80.

For ipod users on the go, there are no less than 84 cases listed at Apple`s online ipod store — from the patently ridiculous Apple branded isocks; which require users to slide the ipod in and out to change playlists or dock; to the more practical Belkin Leather iPod Case. However with  four generations of ipods, not counting the mini, shoppers would be advised to find out which model the prospective receiver owns before purchasing anything, because some cases are not compatible with some models, for example the Belkin Leather Case does not support the ipod mini or ipod with click wheel.

For audiophiles dissatisfied with the quality of sound from headphones there are a number of speaker solutions starting with the US$299 Bose SoundDock Digital Music System. Bose long known for bringing professional quality audio to home users has done it again with this speaker/docking station combination with an infra-red remote, making enjoying the music on your ipod as simple as plugging it into a cradle. Also available is the JBL On Stage – iPod Speakers; suggested retail, US$199; which also features a small footprint and docking station for your ipod. Renowned computer speaker manufacture Altec Lansing also offer ipod speaker dock solutions with their iM3 and iMMini  for standard and mini ipods respectively, prices are US$180 and US$130.

If none of these catch your eye, here are a couple more neat  and budget conscious toys from Griffin, geared towards ipod owners; the iBeam; US$19.99; is a snap on laser pointer and flashlight for your ipod as well as the podpod; US$9.99, a cradle that sits in car cup holders holding the ipod at a visible and accessible angle with room inside for the docking cable.

This is by no means is a definitive collection of ipod accessories, but a guide to help you get started on gift ideas for your favourite ipod owner. The popularity of the ipod ensures that there are a plethora of products available and if you don`t get one this year, there`s always next year.

choosing the right ipod

November 16, 2004 — Leave a comment

i`m trying to swing a press pass for MacWorld SF, next January and one of the qualifications is an industry related story published in the last six months. i completely forgot that i promised an editor in Trinidad that they`d have a piece today, so i`m actually writing it here first to get all the kinks out and then sending it on.

There are quite a number of portable music players on the market, but none as recognisable as Apple Computer`s iPod. For the last three years this has been the must have gift, for everyone. This Christmas is not going to be any different and with three standard models and a limited special edition version, the choices have become; if anything; more difficult.

The three standard editions are the iPod Mini; which comes with a 4Gb hard drive and six colour choices; the iPod; which comes in either 20 or 40Gb versions and the iPod Photo; which boasts a colour LCD display with a choice of 40 or 60Gb drives. Apple also introduced a special black and red U2 edition of the iPod with a 20Gb drive.

According to Apple, the iPod Mini allows you to carry 1,000 songs. This figure is based on an assumption that all songs are all four minutes long and encoded at 128Kbs; which produces fairly decent sound quality. If you have a small to average music collection and not necessarily looking bang for your buck this may be the iPod for you. The Mini; as the name implies is the smallest of the iPods; is a little smaller than a pack of cigarettes and comes in silver, gold, blue, green and pink. Apple`s recommended retail price is US$249.

However with an extra US$50 ($299) you can get five times the music with the standard 20Gb iPod. The 20Gb iPod is the ideal balance of price and storage capabilities. Put in perspective, 2OGb of music would allow you to listen to a different song, all day, everyday for approximately two weeks without hearing a repeat. if you have the money to burn and truly want to be different you could shell out the US$349 for special edition U2 iPod, which is just a marketing gimmick. You`re basically paying $50 more than the standard iPod for a black and red iPod autographed by U2, not particularly worth the extra expense in my book.

If you`re an audiophile and believe you can discern between MP3 and AAC encoding and can tell the difference between files encoded at 128Kbs and 320Kbs, I would recommend the 40Gb iPod. Solely so you can have some of your music to go. The 40Gb iPod retails for US$399.

the new iPod Photos, in my humble estimation, are geared toward the technophiles that must have the newest, latest, shiniest toys. I think the colour screen is cute, but see no need to upload photos to my iPod. I do however appreciate the possibilities inherent in 60Gb of storage space. My current digital audio collection is close to 50Gb and the ability to have all of it, in one place makes me drool. The prices are however a little steep, running US$499 and $599 for 40 and 60Gb models respectively.

All versions of the iPod work on both Macintosh and computers running Windows with Firewire or USB 2.0 ports

1. poor service

trinidad is not know for it’s service industry, so why it continues to aggrevate me, is still a mystery to me. usually i can ignore the behaviour but today was just completely wrong. i sat in a fast food chain while an employee hung up on a customer, i was amazed and what was even more amazing was the manager’s reaction… he didn’t care, he seems more bothered that they were calling him to the phone. i don’t even know why i was amazed, this is trinidad

which brings me to…

2. lack of exemplars

so i’m in a taxi on my way into port of spain, and this car changes lanes without indicating, this is a common thing here, but what pissed me off about it was a fucking licensing officer (for those of you who don’t know the licensing office is the body responsible for issuing driver’s permits and general road saftey) so you see the irony in that particular maneuver.

rant over.

it’s hard to really rant when there is so much cool shit going on…

itunes 4, the new ipods and the itunes music service, i am in my glee. it’s great time to be a geek