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Discussion in 'Playback Devices' started by Ed St. Clair, Jan 9, 2006.
My nephew is looking for a music device with screen. iPod or whatever. What's best? Thanks.
Ed: This area was set up for Audioholics to post about upcoming products,etc. I am moving this to the Audio/Video Resources area. Parker
iPod's are great IF you plan on using iTunes. I received a 2gb nano as a gift and it's great but I think I'd be just as happy with about any player of similar size/capacity. The ability to integrate with alot of different devices along with control from those devices (car stereo headunits, home theater receivers) is nice, but given the price premium you pay for the "industry standard" i'd probably go a different direction if i were making the purchase myself. Philips has some nice 2gb options available for about half the 2gb iPod Nano.
I have an Ipod, and these are my reasons: I primarily use it in my car and at work....so 1)I wanted a large capacity unit, enough to fit my entire collection, that had available mounting/interface/power kits for automobiles. 2)I wanted an easy dock system for the office so i can just plunk it down for power and audio hookup. 3) I wanted easy control and visible display. 4) I have all my CD's converted to MP3 for other network devices at home, it must play MP3's natively, some like Sony convert it to another format (and fail during the conversion process, spent 4 days trying to convert them to on a Sony product). It must have reliable software. The Ipod had by far the most accessories and kits available for hookup to car decks, computers, home stereos, docks, etc. Most of the other units have little or nothing available, often just an AC powersupply and 1/8 headphone jack for audio. There are smaller units that would make better travel mates, but this is something i rarely do.
Our household has two iPod's -- a 40GB one for me and a 6GB one for my wife. Similar to Westly, I was looking for something easy to use and that had a lot of 3rd party accessory support. The iPod was a good fit. Some people complain about iTunes, which is needed to copy music from your PC to the iPod (yes, I know there are other 3rd party options, but iTunes is used by almost all iPod owners). However, other than being a little bloated, iTunes works well for managing my MP3 library -- I just do not use it to encode my MP3 files, which it does not do that well.
Check out the creative Zen players. The battery is replacable and it will play most any format.
I just got the 4GB Nano and I love it. I use it in the car and at home exercising. It's very easy to use and there are tons of accessories.
I was hoping to hear about Sony. It is not on their web site, however saw a photo from the show with a devilishly good looking unit. Thanks for the help! (Nano ,nano & Zen to you all) My brother in-law is looking to purchase next month. Maybe something out of C.E.S., even cooler than the choices you have graciously give me, will pop out! Happy '06.
I actually bought a Sony 20GB tiny player that looked very cool. But the software they used was buggy and I could not get it to transfer my music to the player. It would go part way through and fail. You could not just start where you left off, and there were thousands of songs being transferred, so to deselect the ones that has transferred so far would be a huge undertaking. After it failed on two different computers with all available updates several times I gave up and returned it. Other reasons I returned it were that it was not in MP3 (A-track4)format on the unit, screen was hard to see from any distance, buttons were tiny and very difficult to access unless the unit is in your hand (not good for cars or desk). There were no accessories, not even a car power adapter available, nothing but the included AC adapter. Also it looks like Sony dropped the unit as I don't see it around, so it probably will never get supported well, something likely with any non-ipod product. I did really like it's looks, how small it was, and the way the buttons were setup you could learn them & then control the player without even looking at it(with it in you pocket). Battery life was good and it held a lot of songs. The sound was also good in the higher sampling rates.
The new Zen Vision:M looks pretty cool. Plus it comes with an FM tuner and voice/line in recorder. Also, Creative players are supposed to have awesome sound quality, better than the iPod.
Thanks to all. I've been checking out sites & reviews on the web. Will run it by my brother in-law. I'd go Zen. The kid wants an "iPod". You know how that is. My brother in-law wanted to save some money. Looks like it will be $150 to $200, still. However, now he has a better chance to get his money's worth. Great help. Hope to post the result!
How about a home theatre set up that includes a docking station for an Ipod - and maybe some wireless speakers to make it a household music system for parties when the TV is not used for films. Does this exist - is it hard to do? Thanks
I think one or two manufacturers have docking cradles for the iPod on their HT reciever. Some of the mid-range Yamaha's have front 1/8" jacks. Or - go to Radio Shack and buy the adapter with the 1/8" stereo plug on one end, and 2 RCA male jacks on the other. Plug the L/R jacks to un-used inputs on your reciever and instant iPod-through-the-HT. This one is $8 with a 6 ft cord:
I have the 60 gig iPod with video. I'm diggin' it. the video quality is pretty decent considering the screen size. I watch stuff on the train all the time (commute to the city). Yes, there are cheaper players out there though, but there are tons of accessories for the iPod that aren't available to other players. iTunes probably is not the BEST jukebox, but it works well enough. As for MP3, you're better off recording new stuff into AAC, because it sounds better at a smaller file size. Or if you get a different player, there are other formats that are better than MP3 as well...