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Archos Gmini XS 100 3GB MP3 Player

Archos Gmini XS 100 3GB MP3 Player

Archos have announced their new 3GB MP3 player: the Gmini XS 100.

The Gmini XS 100 has a 3GB hard drive in a package comparable in size to the ipod mini: 3.6" x 1.7" x 0.5” and 2.8oz, and is very competitively pticed at $179.

Other features of the Gmini XS 100 are 4 colors (blue, pink, black, and silver), USB 2.0, support for MP3 WMA and WAVEm 1.5" greyscale 128 x 128 LCD, and 14hr battery life.

If you are looking for an inexpensive MP3 player but need more space than a flash based player this could be a good choice.

(more from Archos)

Gateway 6GB MP3 Photo Jukebox

Gateway 6GB MP3 Photo Jukebox

Gateway have tried firing a shot across the bows of apple and the ipod mini by launching the Gateway 6GB MP3 Photo Jukebox, unfortunately the shot appears to have misfired.

Technically the Photo Jukebox is nice with a 6gb hard drive, 1.6" 128 x 128 pixel color LCD, USB 2.0, sync with Microsoft Media Player 10, and 8 to 10 hr battery life, all in a 3.8 x 2.3 x 0.7 inch 3.4oz $249 package.

Visually though the Photo Jukebox just doesn't do it for me, the screen is to small to see anything and the controls look fiddly. Gateway should have stuck with the all metal look of their 4GB model.

(more at Gateway)

Creative Muvo Mix (iPod Shuffle Competitor)

Creative Muvo Mix (iPod Shuffle Competitor)

Creative have come out with a competitor to the iPod Shuffle, trying to grab some of the shuffles reported 50+% market share of the flash MP3 market.

The Muvo Mix comes in 4 flavors: 64MB, 128MB, 256MB, and 512MB, is 2.87" x 1.38" x 0.63" and weighs 1.39oz.

The next iPod mini 8gb 10gb color?

8gb

So, we think a lot of people were disappointed by yesterday's iPod mini updates, especially as we had been hoping for a color screen.

Don't despair completely though, Think Secret has some speculation about future upgrades to the ipod mini line.....

8gb and 10gb 1-inch hard drives will be shipping later this year so they think that Christmas will see an 8 or 10 gb iPod mini with a color screen, and around the same time we should also see the regular iPod head up to 80gb storage.

Time to be good boys and girls and start writing to Santa to let him know what you want.

Think Secret Speculation

iPod Photo

iPod Photo

Along with today's iPod mini announcement Apple has announced a new iPod Photo, this is another evolutionary announcement rather than a revolutionary one.... maybe Apple sets the bar too high with their product releases but a lot of people were expecting more.

The iPod color now comes in two hard drive sizes, 30gb for $349 or 60gb for $449 and they have added a couple of new features such as the ability to directly import photos from your digital camera (using an option $29 cable).

Linky to Apple's Press Release

iPod mini (mark 2)

iPod mini mark 2

Ok, we love our iPod mini but considering that the only things keeping its sales up are the hype and its good looks we're amazed Apple did so little with the new version to help it compete with the multitude of competitors who have better software, larger hard drives, more features, color screens, etc etc.

So what do we get with the new version: hard drive size upped from 4gb to 6gb, better battery life (which it did really need), and the writing on the scroll wheel now matches the color of the mini. Oh, and they ditched the gold color no-one liked and made the green blue and pink brighter.

Someone catch me, I'm about to feint with all the excitement.

The new mini, priced the same as the old mini, $249.

(and if you still want an old mini they have cut the price on those to $199).

iriver H10 MP3 Player

iriver H10 MP3 Player

iriver let us play with their new H10 5gb MP3 player last night, and we like it.

The iriver H10 is a competitor to the iPod mini but has a number of advantages over the older mini: a color screen with a nice user interface, displays your photos, FM tuner and recorder (even allowing you to schedule recordings), and a 12 hour removable battery.

Overall it feels good to carry and the navigation touch strip feels easy to use.

The iriver H10 is available in 4 colors (we like the red best), is 3.8" x 2.2" x 0.6", weighs 3.4oz, and will cost $279.

Continue reading "iriver H10 MP3 Player"

Posted January 6, 2005 in CES , Music | TrackBack (0) | Comments (1)

Nyko iBoost Mini

Nyko iBoost Mini

This is an interesting little iPod mini accessory from Nyko, a company best known for it's innovative gaming controllers.

The iBoost Mini is a battery that connects to the bottom of your iPod mini and provides an extra 10 hours of power, you can sync, dock and/or charge the mini with it attached, it doesn't come off easily so it won't fall off when you are working out, and it has some smart charging/discharging features:

When it is attached power drains from the iBoost first so your mini's main battery stays full.

Also when you recharge it the mini's main battery is charged first, ensuring you always have as full a main battery as possible.

No price announced yet but my guess is that it will be in the $60-80 range.

Posted January 6, 2005 in CES , Music | TrackBack (0) | Comments (0)

Copycat iPod Mini

aboss ipod mini clone

I know they say imitation is the sincerest form of flattery but I doubt Apple will be flattered when they see this.

Details are scarce but the "i-pocket" by Taiwanese firm Aboss has a 4-color OLED screen, an SD/MMC card slot, 800MaH battery, the same 5 colors as the iPod mini, and probably an internal CF card as htey claim storage capacities from 64mb to 8gb (although they could just be talking about the capacity of the SD card you put in it.)

casa-aboss-com.tw (more info via Engadget and DAPreview)

80gb iPod .... in Q3 2005?

80gb hard drive for ipod

Toshiba has announced that they will be shipping an 80gb version of the 1.8" hard drive used in Apple iPods.

The 80gb hard drive will be the same size (0.32" thick) and weight as the current 40gb and 60gb drives used in iPods.

Toshiba also announced a new 40gb drive that is just 0.20" thick, which should lead to thinner 40gb MP3 players in the future.

The drives spin at 4200rpm (the same as most 2.5" laptop drives), have an average seek time of 15ms, and can take a 500G shock when operating.

(via The Register)

Posted December 14, 2004 in Music | TrackBack (0) | Comments (0)

iSoundz iPod Speakers

iSoundz ugly

Ugliest

iPod

Accessory

Ever!

$39.88 for a massive (sarcasm) 0.6 watts per channel of plastic ugliness. Please Digital Age (manufacturer of iSoundz), fire whoever designed this monstrosity and go back to the drawing board.

My eyes hurt!

(Amazon via DAPreview)

Posted December 8, 2004 in Music | TrackBack (0) | Comments (0)

Or is this the iPod Flash?

iPod Flash

CultOfMac has posted a computer generated mockup (made by Isamu Sanada) of the iPod Flash, and unlike TheMacMind at least they are not claiming it is based on official insider info.

This one is shaped more like the packinging for certain brands of birth control pills, but is also a really interesting concept with the whole iPod Flash being a scroll wheel with a small screen in the center.

Interesting design but a bit too out there even for Apple in my opinion.

More at CultOfMac

Is this the iPod Flash?

iPod Flash

TheMacMind has posted what they claim is a computer generated mockup of the iPod Flash.

Supposedly it is shaped like a Milano Cookie (but looks more like a suppository to me) and is 2.5" by 1.5" by 0.5".

Other alleged insider info is that it has no screen, a 4 way control, and will be priced at $99 for the 256MB version.

Looks interesting but I will wait for more verification before accepting this as gospel.

More at TheMacMind

Sony MP3 Network Walkman

sony network walkman hard drive mp3 player

What do you get if you take Sony's overpriced NW-HD2 Network Walkman, raise the price by $20, and add MP3 support?

The answer is the NW-HD3 Network Walkman that is being released this December.

Yep, that's it, move along now, no bigger hard drive, no color screen, no price cuts to make it more competitive.

Oh, and if you have the earlier NW-HD1 (released 5 months ago) or NW-HD2 (released 2 months ago) you can get a firmware upgrade, for $20.

More from PC World

Posted November 30, 2004 in Music | TrackBack (0) | Comments (0)

H2O Waterproof iPod Mini Case

H2O Waterproof iPod Mini Case

Have you ever needed to go surfing while listening to your iPod mini?, me neither, but if you did it's good to know there are gadgets around like the H2O Audio SV-iMini.

The H2O Audio SV-iMini is a completely waterproof (up to 10ft depth) casing for the iPod mini that comes with a matching waterproof headset and earplugs.

The H20 Audio SV-iMini will be available Debember 6th and will cost $149.95.

H2O Audio Product Page

(via designtechnica)

Posted November 22, 2004 in Music | TrackBack (0) | Comments (0)

Flashy iPod

Appleinsider is reporting that Apple is about to begin manufacturing a flash-based MP3 player that will be announced at the Macworld show in San Francisco next January.

This is a big area where Apple has been lacking, having 90+% market share of hard drive based MP3 players, but not having any flash based players which typically sell for $100 to $200 and have 128mb to 2gb memory.

The rumor is that Apple will offer players with between 256mb and 1gb of memory that will be priced under $200.

I think Dell really need to start pushing their Pocket DJ: it is a 5gb hard drive player that I have seen priced as low as $180. If I had a choice of a 1gb Apple for $200 or a 5gb Dell for $180 I know what I would buy as at the end of the day iPods are pretty but they are over-priced and under-featured.

(via appleinsider)

Posted November 15, 2004 in Music | TrackBack (0) | Comments (0)

XM Radio Delphi MyFi Portable

XM Radio Delphi MyFi Portable

Cnet has a preview of the Delphi MyFi portable XM radio player:

"Delphi's MyFi is the first personal satellite-radio receiver to offer a truly portable, Walkman-style form factor. The MyFi lets you listen to all of XM's more than 130 digital stations anywhere you can see the sky. It will be available in December for a list price of $350."

(more from Cnet)

"If the $350 list price doesn't scare you, don't forget that you'll need to continue your $10-per-month XM subscription to make the MyFi more than a paperweight. And though you'll be able to listen to such XM exclusives as Major League Baseball broadcasts, don't expect to hear Sirius-only fare such as Howard Stern (in 2006) or the NFL."

Bose Sounddock Review

bose sounddock for ipod and ipod mini

iPodlounge reviewed the Bose Sounddock speaker system for iPods, and they weren't too impressed:

"The Good: Second-best iPod-matching speakers we’ve tested to date on sound quality, featuring rich, clear sound out of the box and clean design. Great remote control included for purchase price.
The Bad: Price is substantially higher than all iPod-matching competitors, size, weight, and lack of battery option preclude use as truly portable speaker system, can’t dock with computer."


I would have to agree with them, portability is a big thing for me, I love that I can fold up my altec Lansing inMotion speakers and take them anywhere, the Bose Sounddock isn't portable so I wont be buying one: If I just want to listen to music at home I stream it from my PC to my living room speakers.

Shop for Bose Products

iPodlounge Review

Posted November 4, 2004 in Music | TrackBack (0) | Comments (0)

Black iPod Accessories

itrip for black ipod U2

Expect to see a slew of black colored versions of all the previously pearly white iPod accessories.

First out of the gates is Griffin with their new black edition of the iTrip FM Transmitter.

The iTrip Black will be available in November for $35.

iTrip Black product page

Posted October 28, 2004 in Music | TrackBack (0) | Comments (0)

U2 Special Edition iPod

U2 Special Edition iPod

It doesn't seen very special to me but Apple has released a U2 branded special edition iPod.

It's a 20gb 4th generation iPod with a black shell, red scroll wheel, some signatures on the back, and a $349 price sticker.

One rumor proved false is that it comes with a load of U2 music, instead you can buy "the first digital box set" of 400 tunes for a measly $149 more.

U2 ipod product page

Apple 60GB Color Photo iPod

Apple 60GB Color Photo iPod

Apple has announced the long expected 60gb color version of the iPod:

"A delight for the ears. A feast for the eyes. Though it’s no bigger than a pack of playing cards and weighs in at just over 6 ounces, iPod Photo delivers a one-two sensory punch. Letting you carry an entire library of your favorite music — up to 15,000 songs — or enough photos — as many as 25,000 — to fill nearly 200 slide trays or cover nearly 5,000 square feet of wall space. Got a really big den?

The newest member of the iPod family, iPod Photo comes in two sizes: a 40GB model, available for $499, and a capacious 60GB model that sells for $599. Both feature a razor sharp LCD display that lets you see your photos in vivid color — 65,536 colors, to be exact. And with its built-in backlighting, you’ll be able to admire those photos indoors or out."

Some highlights of the 60gb iPod Photo are 15 hr battery life, 220 x 176 pixel 65k color screen, syncs album art, and a (too high) $599 price tag.

ipodlounge has some exclusive photos

DMC Xclef 500 100gb MP3 Player

DMC Xclef 500 100gb MP3 Player

The DMC Xclef 500 100gb MP3 Player is an upgraded version of DMC's existing Xclef 500 MP3 player.

This thing is big (5.0" x 3.2" x 0.8") but if that isn't a problem and you need storage for 10 gazillion songs this could be worth looking at.

The DMC Xclef 500 100gb MP3 Player features MP3, WMA, WAV, ASF, and OGG files, has an FM tuner, can record FM and voice at up to 320kbps, has a battery life of 20hrs, and costs $449 for the 100gb version.

DMC Xclef 500 100gb MP3 Player Product Page

(via the inquirer)

Motorola m500 5gb MP3 player

Motorola M500 5GB MP3 player

Motorola now has the official product page up for their m500 5GB MP3 player.

The Motorola m500 5gb MP3 player features a replaceable/rechargeable lithium-ion battery, backlit display, MP3 WMA and audible support, FM tuner, FM recording, clock, stopwatch, USB 2.0 connectivity, and a 25 hour battery life.

The Motorola m500 5gb MP3 player will be available in November and pricing is expected to be the same as all the other 5gb players coming out for Christmas ($200-$250).

Motorola Product Page

Dell 5GB Pocket DJ

Dell 5GB Pocket DJ

Dell have announced their competitor to the iPod mini: the Dell Pocket DJ.

The Dell Pocket DJ is a 5GB hard drive based mp3 player roughly the same size as the iPod mini and weighing in at 4.4oz.

It has 25% more storage (5GB), 20% more battery life (10 hrs) but will cost 20% less ($199).

It looks to us like the user interface of the Dell Pocket DJ isn't as good as the iPod mini or the Creative Zen Touch (especially the "scroll barrel" but the overall design is nice.

Overall if you are in the market for a 4 or 5GB MP3 player this is worth looking at.

Posted October 16, 2004 in Music | TrackBack (0) | Comments (1)

Sony Beats on RetroPod

Sony Beats on RetroPod

Sony really needs to get a clue about how to do business. They used to have a reputation for being cool but now they just churn out pretty looking under-powered over-priced junk that always uses their own proprietary formats that no-one else is interested in (memory stick, ATRAC etc).

As if that wasn't enough they are now getting bad publicity by threatening the creators of the RetroPod.

The RetroPod was a fun satirical look at the 80's that took an old sony walkman and made it into a case for an iPod. Sont obviously doesn't get satire and sent a nasty cease and desist letter:

"Your use of casings for such a purpose is a clear infringement of the SONY and WALKMAN marks because it is deceptive. Consumers likely will be misled and deceived into believing that Sony is somehow connected with the iPod personal stereo when in fact it is not. Moreover, they will be misled into thinking that Sony is backward in its design of products and is going away from miniaturization, as the size of the tape player housing is quite large by today's standards."

Anyway, since when is an iPod a "personal stereo", what century are those lawyers living in?

(retropod via engadget)

Posted October 16, 2004 in Music | TrackBack (0) | Comments (0)

Hands on with the Virgin Player

virgin electronics 5bg mp3 player

If the Creative Zen Micro is the "good" of new 5GB MP3 players then the Virgin Player seems to be both the "bad" and the "ugly".

It doesn't look like anything special, too much un-shiny plastic, the navigation isn't very good, and at the end of the day to my eyes it's just not sexy in the way that the iPod mini is.

I do like the dual headphone socket features but at the end of the day that's about all this MP3 player has going for it.

I expected more in the way of exciting design from Richard Branson and the company that put classy bars and double beds in boeing 747s and is going into space as Virgin Galactic.

5 hands on photos below.

Continue reading "Hands on with the Virgin Player"

Posted October 14, 2004 in Music | TrackBack (0) | Comments (2)

Hands on with the Creative Zen Micro

creative zen micro hands on

Over at Digital Life I had a chance to play with the new Creative Zen Micro 5GB MP3 player, and I was impressed.

In my eyes it takes a lot to beat the iPod mini but the Zen Micro is in with a chance: it has the same small size but solid feel as the iPod mini and I'm tempted to say that after a few minutes use the navigation with the vertical scroll pad seems better than using the mini (why go round in a circle on the mini to scroll down a list when you can just scroll down on the Zen Micro).

I also like the way that the Zen Micro has a removable battery with a battery life that should be about 50% longer than the mini.

Tech specs of the Zen Micro and 5 hands-on photos are below.

Continue reading "Hands on with the Creative Zen Micro"

iRiver PMC-120

iriver

Got to run out the door now to get to the Digital Life show.

Wanted to finish with some photos of the iRiver PMC-120 20GB portable video player.

The iRiver PMC-120 has a 3.5" LCD screen and a 20gb hard drive, is 3.3 by 5.6 by 1.2 inches and weighs 0.6 pounds.

Battery life is supposed to be 5hrs for video and 14hrs for audio, and the price is $549.99.


More new to follow later today from both Digital Focus and Digital Life.

Continue reading "iRiver PMC-120"

Posted October 14, 2004 in Music , Personal Video Player | TrackBack (0) | Comments (1)

Archos Gmini XS200 and Gmini 400

archos gmini xs200 and gmini 400

I got my hands on both of these players at Digital Focus.

The Archos Gmini XS200 is a _tiny_ 20gb MP3 player, it felt almost comparable in size to an iPod mini, it's that small. Nice big screen on it but the navigation seems a bit too simplified and minimalist.

The Archos Gmini 400 is also small but is a fully featured video player. 2.2" screen 20gb hard drive etc etc. It hasa CF slot which is useful and I loved the TV out feature, picture quality was not as good as a DVD but was a lot better than regular TV.

Pictures below.

Continue reading "Archos Gmini XS200 and Gmini 400"

HP Tattoos

HP ipod tattoos

Hp were showing off their ipod stick-on tattoos that are now available for purchase at HP.

I grabbed a few samples (The Who, Sting, and the Hives) and they are really high quality, the printing is clear and crisp, and the sticker comes away from the backing easily.

Hopefully I will have some tattoos to give away to ipod owners soon.

(more tattoo pictures below)

HP was also showing off their new Media Center devices including the media center extender and the HP Digital Entertainment Center z500 series living room dual tuner media center. Again I was impressed by the quality and looks of these devices.

(pics of those below as well)

Continue reading "HP Tattoos"

Creative Zen Micro 5gb MP3 Player

creative zen micro 5gb mp3 player

We mentioned the Creative Zen Micro 5gb MP3 Player over the weekend but now the official web page is up:

  • Holds 2,500 songs on 5GB1 hard drive
  • Micro sized (3.3" tall, 2" wide, 0.7" deep)
  • Available in 10 electrifying colors (Black, White, Silver, Dark blue, Light blue, Red, Purple, Citrus Orange, Lime Green and Pink)
  • Features a removable lithium ion battery
  • Get up to 12 hours playback on a single charge2
  • FM radio to listen and record
  • Built-in mic for up to 10hrs voice recording
  • Vertical touch pad for easy and intuitive navigation
  • Access over 2 million songs through Zen supported music services
  • Highest audio clarity at 98dB SNR
  • High fidelity earphones with dynamic bass response
  • Contacts, Calendar and To Do List3
  • Plays MP3, WMA, WAV files
  • Functions as an external hard drive for backup of computer files
  • Backlit LCD displays track info
  • Repeat, resume, and random play
  • 8 EQ settings (Acoustic, classical, disco, jazz, new age, pop, rock and vocal)
  • Sleep and wake timers
  • Customizable main menu, so the features you want are right at your finger tips
  • USB 2.0 interfaces (cables included)
  • Belt clip / stand
  • weight: 3.8 oz. (includes removable battery)
  • warranty: 1 year limited hardware warranty / 90 day service warranty

Creative Zen Micro 5gb MP3 Player

(thanks Jorge)

Have you got a Woodi in your pocket?

Woodi MP3 player

This weeks award for most unfortunate company or product name goes to Korean company Woodi who produce a range of MP3 players.

Woodi's latest MP3 player is the WD-S1 which has an interesting swivel cover.

Other features of the Woodi WD-S1 are 256mb or 512mb storage, USB 1.1 connectivity, 2 color OLED screen, support for MP3, WMA, and OGG.

It's a small Woodi, 3.8" long, 1.2" wide, and 0.9" deep, with a weight of 1.5oz.

(woodi product page via i4u)

Posted October 12, 2004 in Music | TrackBack (0) | Comments (0)

Virgin 5GB MP3 Player

virgin electronics 5gb mp3 player

The 5GB MP3 player announcements are coming out quickly now. This time it's Virgin / Virgin Electronics announcing their 5GB MP3 player, unimaginitively called the "Virgin Player".

The one interesting feature of the Virgin 5GB MP3 player is that it has two headphone sockets for sharing music with a friend: great idea!

The downside is that the Virgin 5GB MP3 player is going to be the same price as the iPod mini, and that it doesn't exactly challenge the iPod mini in the looks department.

The Virgin Player will be available at the end of October for $249.

Creative Zen Micro 5gb MP3 Player

creative zen micro 5gb mp3 player

5GB MP3 players are like buses, you wait ages and ages for one then a bunch come along at the same time.

Gizmodo just found out about a new one: the Creative Zen Micro.

The Creative Zen Micro is due out by Christmas and comes in 10 colors (take that Apple!).

What else?, the Creative Zen Micro is small and curvy (3.3" x 2.0" x 0.7") has a removable battery, FM radio, voice recorder, and a 12 hour battery life.

I would expect this to cost around the same as the iPod mini (in the $200 to 250 range).

(more from Gizmodo)

Ezmax EZMP-4100 2GB Flash MP3 Player

Ezmax EZMP-4100 2GB Flash MP3 Player

It looks like dpreview found the first flash based MP3 player with a 2GB storage capacity: the Ezmax EZMP-4100.

The Ezmax EZMP-4100 is an upgrade to the exisiting EZMP-4000 series and measures 3.5" x 1.1" x 0.9" and weighs just 1oz.

Features of the Ezmax EZMP-4100 include support for MP3, WMA, and OSF, an OLED screen, voice recording, and FM radio.

Battery life of the Ezmax EZMP-4100 is about 13 hrs.

Ezmax 4000 series specifications
(via dpreview)

60gb Color iPod by Christmas

Apple ipod by christmas 60gb color

According to thinksecret Apple has a new iPod currently in production in Asia that uses Toshiba's 60GB 1.8" hard drive.

But wait, there's more..... they also claim that the new top of the range iPod will sport a 2" color LCD screen, synchronize with iPhoto software, and have new audio/video out capabilities.

The 60GB iPod is supposed to be the same height and width as current 4th generation iPods but will be 0.1" thicker and a little heavier.

Apple is planning on releasing the 60GB iPod within 30 to 60 days and it expected to sell for $499.

(more from thinksecret)

Mpio HD300 MP3 Player

Mpio HD300 20gb 40gb MP3 player

Another new device found by the guys over at dapreview.

The Mpio HD300 is a 1.8" hard drive based MP3 player similar in size and shape to the regular ipod.

The Mpio HD300 supports MP3, WMA, and OGG, and its features include FM tuner, USB 2.0 connectivity, rechargeable li-polymer battery with a claimed battery life of 15 hrs, a vioce recorder, and a 160 x 128 pixel LCD screen.

Two versions of the Mpio HD300 will be available: 20gb and 40gb, and pricing is expected to be comparable to the ipod.

(via dapreview)

Posted October 6, 2004 in Music | TrackBack (0) | Comments (0)

NHJ VHD-5500 5GB MP3 Player

NHJ VHD-5500 5GB MP3 Player

AV Watch went to the Ceatec show in Japan and sound a nice little 5GB MP3 player with an equally interesting looking pair of Bluetooth headphones.

The NHJ VHD-5500 is YAIMK (yet another ipod mini killer), with 5GB storage, Bluetooth and USB connectivity, and support for MP3, WMA, and OGG.

NHJ is the same compay that offers a range of "femate oriented" digital cameras called Che-ez!

(via dapreview)

Posted October 6, 2004 in Music | TrackBack (0) | Comments (0)

Cowon iAudio M5

cowon iaudio M5 MP3 player

iaudiophile.net posted some pics and specs of upcoming MP3 players from Cowon.

The Cowon iAudio M5 is a hard drive based MP3 player with limited video playback.

The Cowon iAudio M5 has a Color LCD, USB connectivity, picture viewer, FLAC, OGG, WMA, MP3, ASF, and WAV support, and will probably have a 20gb hard drive. There may also be a M5L model released with 40gb drive.

Weight and size of the Cowon iAudio M5 are said to be similar to the earlier M3 model which is 4.1" x 2.4" x 0.6" and 4.8oz.

Price of the M5 might be in the $300-$350 range and it will be available in December.

(via iaudiophile.net)

iPod mini Availability

ipod mini christmas availability

There are rumors that the availability of the ipod and ipod mini will be low again closer to Christmas.

At the moment the availability of the iPod mini is the best it's been since it was released, so if you are looking to get the iPod mini as a gift for someone our advice is buy now.

Amazon.com currently has all 5 colors of iPod mini available in stock for $236 with free shipping.

Samsung Yepp YP-T6

samsung yepp yp-t6 time mp3 player 1gb

Samsung has updated their small flash-based Yepp YP-T5 MP3 player, calling it the Samsung Yepp YP-T6 (bet a lot of thought went into that).

Other features of the Samsung Yepp YP-T6 are MP3, OGG, WMA and ASF playback, 4 versions (128mb, 256mb, 512mb, and 1gb) and 5 colors (green, black, red, blue and silver), USB 2.0 connectivity, FM tuner, and voice recorder

The Samsung Yepp YP-T6 is just 2.1" x 0.9" x 0.9" and weighs just 1oz, it's not the smallest MP3 player but it's very close.

The Samsung Yepp YP-T6 will probably be available in the US soon and will cost around $250.

Korean info page

(via I4U)

Archos Gmini XS200

archos gmini xs200 mp3 player

A picture and some more information on the Archos Gmini XS200 mp3 player has shown up on the site of French retailer FNAC.

The Archos Gmini XS200 features a 20gb hard drive, small 128x128 pixel screen, USB 2.0 connectivity, supports MP3, WMA, and WAV files, and works with both windows and mac.

The Archos Gmini XS200 is 3.0" x 2.3" x 0.8" and weighs 4.6oz (smaller and lighter than the iPod 20gb, but a little thicker).

Pricing is Europe is expected to be 299 euros, and the US price will likely be $299.

(via dapreview)

Posted October 3, 2004 in Music | TrackBack (0) | Comments (0)

Sony NW-HD2 Network Walkman

Sony NW-HD2 Network Walkman

Meet the new Sony, same as the old Sony.

I4U found a Japanese press release announcing the Sony NW-HD2 network walkman, successor to the NW-HD1 network walkman released just a few months ago.

Excitment was mounting: would it support MP3 instead of the proprietary ATRAC format?, would it have a color screen?, would it have a larger hard drive than 20gb?, would it be more relaistically priced?

Unfortunately all they seem have changed on the the Sony NW-HD2 network walkman is the color: you can get it in silver, pink, or blue.

The Sony NW-HD2 network walkman will be available in Japan October 10th, and probably the US soon after that.

(via I4U)

Griffin radioSHARK

griffin radioshark AM-FM radio timeshifting save to PC

Griffin have announced that their radioSHARK desktop AM-FM radio is now shipping.

I know, desktop AM-FM radio doesn't should very gadgety or interesting, but the radioSHARK is more like a Tivo for radio that integrates with iTunes and iPods.

The radioSHARK is controlled through your PC or mac and connects via a USB port.

With the radioSHARK you can set presets for station and schedule recodings of radio programs.

Programs recorded with the radioSHARK are saved to iTunes and can be synced with an iPod for portable listening.

The Griffin radioSHARK is available at griffintechnology.com for $69.99.
(press release)

Posted September 29, 2004 in Music | TrackBack (0) | Comments (0)

Matias iPod Armor Mini Review

matias ipod armor mini review

We are getting a lot of use out of our iPod mini, and one thing we felt we needed was a bit more protection when working out at the gym or on a bike ride.

We looked around for a solid metal iPod mini case that had a belt clip, and we came up with the Matias iPod Armor Mini.

Did the Matias iPod Armor Mini case meet our needs? keep reading to find out......

Continue reading "Matias iPod Armor Mini Review"

60gb MP3 Player

toshiba gigabeat 60gb color mp3 player

Toshiba has announced new models in their Gigabeat line of MP3 players, including the first MP3 player with 60gb storage capacity.

The Toshiba Gigabeat F series also has a 2.2" color QVGA (240 x 320 pixel) display, USB 2.0 connectivity, and an 11 hr battery life.

The Toshiba Gigabeat comes in 3 sizes: 10gb, 20gb, and 60gb. The 60gb version will hold up to 15,000 songs and will be available in December.

Press release and specifications
(via gizmodo)

Altec Lansing inMotion Review

altec lansing inmotion ipod speaker system

The iPod mini is a great portable MP3 player, but what about those times when you don't want to listen to music through earphones, what if you want to play music for your guests, or listen to music in your hotel room?

One solution is the Altec Lansing inMotion powered portable speaker system: essentially a little white shiny plastic box that opens up to reveal two pairs of speakers and a dock for the iPod and iPod mini.

Altec Lansing sent us an inMotion speaker system and we tested it out for a few weeks in our apartment, on a business trip to the west coast, and on our recent Hurricane Ivan delayed vacation to Mexico.

Did we like the inMotion? keep reading to find out......

The Altec Lansing inMotion is currently available from Amazon.com for $109.99 with free shipping

Continue reading "Altec Lansing inMotion Review"

Griffin iBeam

griffin ibeam laser pointer and flashlight

Just the other day I was thinking "hmm, wouldn't it be great if I had an accessory for my iPod mini that turns it into both a laser pointer and a flashlight".

Guess what, Griffin Technology just launched that exact accessory.

The Griffin iBeam plugs into the speaker socket of the iPod and iPod mini and comes in two parts: one is a mini flashlight and the other is a class IIIA laser pointer.

The Griffin iBeam is available from griffin for $19.99

Posted September 24, 2004 in Music | TrackBack (0) | Comments (0)

iRiver H320 coming to the US

iriver h320 h340 audio player review

Dapreview.com has found that the iRiver H320 20gb MP3 player is available in the US for $329 with a ship date of October 6th.

The iRiver H320 features a large color screen that you can use to view photos, USB 2.0 file transfer, 20gb storage, voice recorder, FM tuner, support for MP3 WMA ASF WAV and OFF, and a 16hr battery life.

(via dapreview)

Sony Network Walkman to Support MP3?

sony network walkman hard drive mp3 player

My biggest complaint about the Sony Network Walkman was that it didn't support the standard MP3 format, instead making people convert their music to Sony's proprietary ATRAC format.

Sony has done a bit of an about face and announced they start supporting MP3 format on flash based music players.

Their is no info yet on whether they will extend this to their Network Walkman hard drive based player.

If only Sony would ditch their Memory Stick flash card formats and switch to the industry standard CompactFlash or Secure Digital cards: their incompatibility stopped me from buying any Sony PDAs, cameras, or music players.

More from news.com

Bose SoundDock for iPod

bose sounddock for ipod and ipod mini

Bose has put out the press release for their Bose Sounddock speaker system for the iPod and iPod mini (which we mentioned on September 1st), here's what they had to say:

The Bose SoundDock system includes a proprietary acoustic design that delivers clear, full sound across the entire musical spectrum. Using an integrated system approach, the amplifiers, equalizers and speakers are matched; there is no need for the user to make complex adjustments to ensure superb acoustic performance. Patented integrated signal processing automatically adjusts tonal balance, so music sounds natural at any volume.

The Bose SoundDock system works with third and fourth-generation iPods, as well as the iPod miniand includes an infrared remote that can control the iPod from across the room. The system charges the iPod while in use, or when docked.

The Bose SoundDock digital music system measures 6 5/8″x 11 7/8″x 6 1/2″ deep. It features quick installation and intuitive operation. Consumers plug the power cord into a wall outlet, insert the iPod into the docking cradle, and play.

To complement the iPod and iPod mini design, the Bose SoundDock system’s industrial design is modern with a hi-gloss white finish. It is expected to sell for $299.

Shop for Bose Products

Posted September 20, 2004 in Music | TrackBack (0) | Comments (0)

iPod Mini Humidity Problems

ipod mini humidity problems

On my recent gadget review trip I encountered a problem with my iPod mini and I am wondering if anyone else has had the same problem:

Inside my hotel room it was cool (68 degrees) and the air was dry, outside it was 95 degrees and very high humidity (glasses and camera lens steamed up immediately when going outside).

Most days I relaxed by the pool and listened to music or audiobooks, but one day the iPod mini wouldn't startup, the screen stayed blank.

I know the battery was fully charged but the iPod mini wouldn't work at the pool or later that day in the room.

I left the iPod mini in my room and the following day it worked perfectly again, my guess it was the humidity and the mini needed to dry out before it would startup again.

Anyone else encountered a similiar problem with an iPod?

MSN Music Store

Microsoft has quietly launched a beta of their much anticipated music download site.

The site will be integrated into version 10 of Windows Media Player and visitors can currently buy and downlaod music for 99 cents a track.

The full launch of MSN Music will be in October and Microsoft hopes to have one million songs online soon.

MSN Music Store

Posted September 1, 2004 in Music | TrackBack (0) | Comments (0)

Bose SoundDock for iPod

bose sounddock for ipod and ipod mini

Bose has announced a high-end speaker solution for the iPod and iPod Mini at the Apple Expo Paris show.

It is priced at $299 and will ship October 15th. Sound quality is said to be very good for it's size (just like any other Bose product).

Not a lot else is known except that it has a wireless remote control and works with 3rd and 4th generation iPods as well as the iPod mini.

9/20 Update: More info from a Bose press release

Shop for Bose Products

Posted September 1, 2004 in Music | TrackBack (0) | Comments (0)

Rio Carbon 5GB Limited Edition

rio

The Rio Carbon is a potential iPod mini killer - Rio carbon has more storage (5gb hard drive), Rio Carbon is smaller than the mini (2.5”W x 3.3”H x 0.6” D), Rio Carbon is lighter than the mini (3.2oz), and the battery life is longer than the mini (20hrs).

The Rio Carbon is now available for pre-order for $249.99 and will ship September 3rd.

Rio also has a cool limited edition of the Rio Carbon, just 500 available: The limited edition Rio Carbon is laser engraved and numbered on the back, has a limited edition collectors box, has free 2 day air shipping upgrade, and comes with 3 months of Napster music service and 20 free song downloads.

I have pre-ordered one and will be reviewing it next to my iPod Mini when I return from my trip on September 14th.

Pre-Order the Rio Carbon Now

Sony Network Walkman NW-HD1 Review

sony network walkman hard drive mp3 player

I didn't think much of the Sony Network Walkman when it was announced: a 20gb MP3 player for $399 ($100 more than the iPod), that mostly used Sony's own ATRAC3 music format. I've been waiting to see a review to see if it's worth looking at.

Judie over at the gadgeteer got hold of a Sony Network Walkman and write a detailed review. Here's what she thought:

Liked: great battery life, small, solid, easy to navigage
Didn't Like: ARRAC format, high price, must use Sony SonicStage application to manage music.

I still think I will give it a miss.

Creative Muvo2 FM 5GB

creative muvo2 muvo 2 MP3 player 5gb

Creative's Singapore site has some info on new Creative Muvo2 FM MP3 players.

The new Creative Muvo2 players have a 5gb hard drive, FM radio tuner/recorder, and 14 hour battery life.

The Muvo2 FM comes in 5 colors: white, black, pink, green, blue, and should sell for $200-230 when it comes out in the US.

Creative Singapore

Creative Zen Touch now Shipping

creative zen touch mp3 player

The Creative Zen Touch 20gb MP3/WMA player with the cute scrollpad and claimed 32 hour battery life is now shipping at Amazon.com.

Other features of the Zen touch include USB 2.0 connectivity, 160 x 104 pixel blue screen, 4 band custom equalizer, and up to 97dB signal-to-noise ratio.

Buy the 20gb Zen Touch now through Amazon.com for $269.99 and get free shipping, or alternatively follow the amazon link and buy from Office Depot for $253.95.

iPod+hp

HP iPod hewlett packard 4th generation 20gb 40gb

Meet the new iPod, same as the old iPod.

HP posted all the details of the new iPod+HP (aka Apple iPod from HP) on their website and its totally underwhelming.

The iPod+HP appears to be identical to the 4th generation Apple iPod, same price same storage (20gb or 40gb).

Only difference found so far is that HP is offering "HP Tattoos", sticker that go on the iPod related to various artists (Ashlee Simpson, The Cure, Gwen Stefani, Keane, Lloyd Banks, Sting, The Who, The Hives, and Vanessa Carlton). The tattoos come off easily so you wont be stuck with an embarassing tattoo in a few years..... Hmm, call me old but I might like a Who sticker for my iPod mini.

HP Consumer Electronics (including iPod)

HP is expected to announce dozens of consumer electronics gadgets later today including:


  • HP branded version of new 4th generation Apple iPod

  • A digital projector

  • 42" plasma TV

  • 30" and 26" LCD TVs

  • An entertainment hub

  • Printers

  • Cameras

Posted August 27, 2004 in Music | TrackBack (0) | Comments (0)

Nitro Pro Music Server Review

request nitro pro high end music server

DesignTechnica has reviewed the Request Multimedia Nitro Pro Music Server.

The Nitro Pro is a 19 inch rack mountable high end hard drive based audio player. It has a Pentium III processor and 128mb RAM, a 40gb or 60gb hard drive, and a CD-ROM drive.

The downside to the Nitro Pro is that it costs $2500 with 40gb drive or $3000 with 60gb drive, for that kind of money you can buy a good off-the-shelf Media PC that can do a whole lot more.

My recommendation would be something similar to the discontinued Gateway 901 Media Center PC (available remanufactured for $1399) with 3Ghz Pentium 4, 512mb RAM, 250GB hard drive, DVD-RAM/DVD-R/CDRW drive, 128mb video card, media card reader, tv tuner etc.

Posted August 26, 2004 in Music | TrackBack (0) | Comments (0)

hRiver h140 wins EISA award

iriver h140 audio player

The EISA (European Imaging and Sound Association) has chosen the iRiver H140 as the top Audio Player ("European New Media Audio 2004-2005 award").

The H140 is a 40gb hard drive based MP3 player, with USB 2.0 interface, and 16 hr battery life.

The iRiver H140 supports MP3, WMA, ASF, WAV and OGG music files.

The EISA liked the H140 because: "This very well made portable player has a built-in hard drive whose 40 gigabytes of memory make up to 10,000 MP3 titles available to mobile users. The USB 2.0 port facilitates very fast data transfer for all kinds of files. Besides MP3s, the device can also play WMA, WAV, ASF and OGG music files. Its feature set includes a rechargeable battery, a built-in VHF tuner and a microphone for the user's own live recordings. Users can operate the player either with the built-in controls or with a remote control unit supplied with the product. A large backlit display shows all the information they need. The sound quality, which is excellent by portable standards, and the long list of features make the H140 the clear winner."

The H140 is available from Amazon for $399, and the newer H340 is already available in Europe.

iPod Mini: $230 (in stock 8/25)

ipod mini in stock discounted

Crutchfield has the hard to find iPod Mini in stock. Yesterday they had all colors but today they only have gold. Check back daily to see if other colors are in stock.

The price is $249.99 and you can save $20 for a final price of $229.99 with free shipping if you enter referral code pp3fx-8xejj-hsikh on the checkout page.

Click here to check availability and to order.

Samsung Yepp YP-T5

samsung yepp yp-t5 small MP3 player

PC Mag has a review of the Samsung Yepp YP-T5, which used to be the world's smallest MP3 player.

The YP-T5 is 2.1" x 0.9" x 0.9" (1.7 cubic inches volume), and weighs 1.3oz.

The YP-T5 Yepp has 256mb memory and an FM radio tuner, battery life is 13 hrs, but connectivity is only USB 1.1 not the faster 2.0.

Oregon Scientific MP100

oregon scientific mp100 worlds smallest mp3 player

The Oregon Scientific MP100 is currently the world's smallest MP3 player at 1.6" x 1.1" x 0.7" (1.23 cubic inches volume) and just 1oz in weight.

At the moment the MP100 only has 128mb of memory but a 256mb version is expected by Christmas.

You can transfer WMA and MP3 files to it via USB 2.0 and it has a 10hr battery life.

Pocket-lint in the UK has a brief review

Posted August 24, 2004 in Music | TrackBack (0) | Comments (0)

iRiver h340 review

iriver h320 h340 audio player review

iRiver.us has a review of the iRiver H430 40gb hard drive audio player.

The iRiver H340 has a 260,000 color 2" LCD screen, USB 2.0 connectivity (and can act as a host for storing pictures from digital cameras etc), and includes both text and image (jpg) viewers.

Battery life is claimed to be 16 hrs (but the reviewer only got 10 hours), and other features include FM radio and voice recording.

Unfortunately these aren't on sale in the US (only Asia/Europe) but you can get one imported from the UK for $635 (or get the 20gb version for $545) from AdvancedMP3players.co.uk.

(via dapreview)

iPod Mini Software Update

ipod mini software update

There is a rumor that Apple will release an update to the iPod mini software as soon as today or tomorrow.

Highlights of the update for the iPod mini are one-click shuffling, varying playback speed of audiobooks, and other enhancements already included on the new 4th generation iPod.

If you are still trying to get hold of an iPod mini check out our First Impressions iPod Mini Review.

(thanks Think Secret)

Digiana Audia-X FM Transmitter Review

digiana audiax audia-x fm transmitter for mp3 players cds and pocket pcs

For the past week I have taken a break from listening to local radio as I drive around and have instead been listening to music on my Pocket PC and iPod mini played through my car's radio and speakers thanks to an interesting gadget: the Digiana Audia-X FM Transmitter.

How does it work? Continue reading the full review to find out......

Continue reading "Digiana Audia-X FM Transmitter Review"

Archos Gmini 400

archos gmini 400

We mentioned the Archos Gmini 400 a while ago.

Archos has now released the full specs for the device and it is interesting: A good solution if you want a combination portable MP3 player, video player, and photo viewer and don't mind a small screen.

Full specs below.

Continue reading "Archos Gmini 400"

6gb iPod Mini

ipod mini storage

This is just at the pure speculation stage, but DigiTimes interviewed Hitachi Asia-Pacific President Pete Andreyev and he mentioned that Hitachi will be unveiling (in Oct-Dec 2004) a 6gb slim drive that could be used in devices that would currently use a 4gb Compactflash compatible Microdrive.

This could easily appear in the next generation of iPod mini if Apple decides to increase the hard drive size.

We also think these 6gb drives will definately appear as part of 6gb iPod mini clones in the first half of next year.

Rio Chroma

rio chroma chroma

More leaks about the Rio Chroma 20gb Hard Drive based MP3 player. Will it be an updated version of the Rio Karma (shown left) or will it be a new design?. Will it look like a shiny chrome car exhaust?. No pictures have leaked yet so no-one knows.

What is known about the Rio Chroma:


  • Color screen (16 bit)

  • Supports the 2 big formats MP3 and WMA, as well as FLAC, OFF, WAV and Audible

  • 20GB hard drive

  • SDIO expansion slot

  • Drag and drop audio files onto the Chroma in windows

  • 12 hour battery life

  • Price $320-350

Full specs from the leak below:

(thanks engadget)

Continue reading "Rio Chroma"

Packard Bell Pocket M@estro

Pocket M@estro maestro packard bell mp3 player ipod mini competitor

Packard Bell, the British PC manufacturer, has announced a new iPod mini competitor: the Pocket M@estro.

It has a 5gb hard drive (more breakable than the 4gb flash drive in the mini), supports MP3 and WMA, and has a FM radio and voice recorder built in.

No information on size but judging by the photo I expect it to be a little wider and thicker than the ipod mini.

Battery life will be 7hrs, and it will be available in September. Priding is likely to be around 200 pounds ($350).

iPod Mini First Impressions Review

ipod mini storage

At long last our blue iPod Mini has arrived (thanks crutchfield.com).

We will be doing a full review over the next couple of weeks, both standalone and in conjuction with the Audia-X mini FM Transmitter and some Bose noise reduction headphones.

Until then we wanted to give you our first impressions on the packaging and build of the Mini.

Continue reading "iPod Mini First Impressions Review"

iMmini Speakers for iPod Mini

iMmini speakers for ipod mini by Altec Lansing

Altec Lansing have announced a new speaker solution for the iPod Mini based upon (but smaller than) their existing inMotion speakers.

The iMmini is just 7" x 4.4" x 1", has 4 watts output, and a 24 hr battery life (on 4 AA batteries) but supposedly still manages to put out good quality sound thanks to Altec's MaxxBass technology. It has a built in docking station for the iPod Mini and folds up for easy transportation.

The iMmini will be available this summer for $129.95.

I could have used this on my recent two week business trip.

Press Release

iRiver N10

iriver n10

Information is starting to come out about the iRiver N10 mini necklace/pendant MP3 player.

It goes on sale in Korea this weekend priced at $173 for 128mb storage, $235 for 256mb, $303 for 512mb, and $438 for 1GB. Expensive!

The screen of the iRiver N10 is a 16 shade OLED (organic light emitting display, it wight 22 grams (under an ounce, connects via USB1.1 only, battery life is 7 hours with LCD on, 11 hours with LCS off, and is is tiny: just 2" x 1" x 0.5"

Korean Product Page

(thanks DigitalMediaThoughts)

Archos Gmini 400

archos gmini 400

Update 8/15: More on the Archos Gmini 400 here.

Archos is planning to release a new MP3 player that will also play video. I am classing this mostly as a MP3 player as the screen is 2.2".

The Archos Gmini 400 could be just what you need if you are looking for a MP3 player the same size as a regular ipod, with a color screen, a 20gb hard drive, CF slot, MP3 and WMA support.

(thanks PVP4U)

Rio Forge 128mb-512mb MP3 Player

rio forge 512mb MP3 player

At the same time as Rio announced the Carbon iPod competitor they announced a range of new flash drive based MP3 players with 128mb, 256mb, and 512mb capacity.

These are designed for sporty people, looking like a stopwatch and offering lap timer and stopwatch features as well as just playing music.

Battery life is 20 hours, they connect via USB 2.0, and they can be expanded with SD/MMC cards (which are coming down in price, 512mb SD can be found for $50-60 after rebates).

One thing I'm not sure of: with only a $50 price difference between the 512mb Forge and the 5GB Carbon (20 times the storage) I have to wonder how many of these they are going to sell.

press release

Rio Carbon 5GB MP3 Player

rio carbon 5GB MP3 player

Rio has announced their new iPod mini competitor: the Rio Carbon.

It sports a 5GB 1-inch harddrive, connects via USB, and offers a claimed battery life of 20hrs: 2.5 times that of the mini. Oh, and it looks like the shiny plastic remote door/alarm thing for my car.

Positives seems to be the longer battery life, 5 band graphic equalizer, voice recorder, and more storage, a negative seems to be using a hard drive instead of a CF card: more moving parts might equal more ways to break.

The Rio Carbon is now available for $249.99 (same price as the iPod mini) and will ship September 3rd. Limited Edition of 500 with custom engraving currently available.

More information

press release

Sony Network Walkman

sony network walkman hard drive mp3 player

Sony's supposed "iPod killer", the network walkman - a 20gb hard drive based player, is now available in the US for $399.95.

It is the smallest 20gb player around (a little bigger than a credit card and under half an inch thick.

Battery life is supposed to be 3 times that of the (3rd generation) iPod but it is $100 more than a 20gb 4th generation iPod and the Sony Network Walkman only plays Sony's proprietary ATRAC3 format.

Personally I will be giving this a miss.

Continue reading "Sony Network Walkman"

Creative Zen Touch Update

creative zen touch mp3 player

The Creative Zen Touch 20gb MP3/WMA player with the cute scrollpad and claimed 32 hour battery life seems to be shipping soon from Amazon.com (currently showing as shipping in 1-2 weeks, which is better than iPod mini availability).

In related news, a press release on the Asian Creative site mentions that a 40gb Zen Touch will be available soon.

Buy the 20gb Zen Touch now through Amazon.com for $269.99 and get free shipping and a $50 gift certificate towards your next purchase.

Turn your iPod into a remote control

ipod mini

Engadget's weekly how-to article this week is about how to turn your iPod (any flavor will do) into a universal infrared remote control.

While this seems like a great idea here's what I don't get... you need an iPod, a Pocket PC, a PC or Mac with sound recording software, and a hardware IR device... so why not just use the Pocket PC as the remote control??

Many Pocket PC's these days are designed with a good IR range and there is software available to make your Pocket PC act as a universal remote control (some Pocket PC's (such as some iPaq's even ship with free versions of that software)

Here are some programs for your pocket pc:

Vito Remote (hmm, the name sounds a lot like Tivo, what a coincidence)
TV Remote Controller (with voice activated commands)
Novii Remote

Alternatively if you have a media PC and want to control Microsoft Media Player remotely from your Pocket PC over a wireless network you can try Zerama Remote, or try controlling iTunes and your Apple Airport Express with eyeTuner (thanks PocketPCThoughts)

(Engadget Article)

How the iPod Came To Be

how the ipod was designed

Wired has an interesting interview with Ben Knauss, part of the team that designed and built the original iPod for Apple... lots of good behind the scenes info.

Here's my favorite part of the story:

Knauss stayed on until near the end of the iPod's development, but quit shortly before it was released because he had no confidence it would be a success.

"It was probably a mistake, but then you have to go with what you think at the time," he said.


Wired Article

New iPod Details & Photo

new ipod details from newsweek

Details are leaking out about the new iPods which are rumored to be launched later today.

A picture is available from the cover of this weeks Newsweek magazine, amd msnbc reports that the new iPod is a little (1mm or 1/25th of an inch) thinner, has about 50% more battery life, and will be $100 cheaper than the old iPods for the same size hard drive (20gb or 40gb).

Predicted features that are missing are a 60gb hard drive (maybe later this year), color screen, and colors other than white for the case.

Large version of the Newsweek cover

Update: The new iPods have been released as predicted, no surprises in what the look like and what their specifications are.

ipod mini to ship internationally July 24th

ipod mini

Apple has announced that the ipod mini will be for sale outside the US starting on July 24th.

I would prefer it if they focussed on clearing all the existing backorders first: I ordered mine a month ago and the expected ship date has gone from "6/30" to "unknown".


Apple giving away iPods

apple ipod giveaway

Apple are having a competition for users of their music store/software itunes: Every song purchased gets you one entry and they are giving away an ipod every 100,000 entries (plus the 100,000,000th download gets a 10000 song certificate and a laptop as well - they are currently at 97,000,000 downloads).

Sounds expensive and not worth it right?..... wrong: you can also enter for free (apparently any number of times as long as you dont have an automatic program entering for you) by using the "tell a friend" feature in itunes to send an email to tunes100@apple.com.

engadget has a "how-to tuesday" feature on how to enter the contest for free and maybe win a 20gb ipod.

How-To Tuesday: How to enter the iTunes contest for free

Posted July 6, 2004 in Music | TrackBack (0) | Comments (0)

$50 Gift Cert with iPod mini

ipod mini discount bargains

Amazon has a great dealat the moment on the Ipod mini 4gb in all 5 colors (silver, blue, pink, green, gold). The price is $249.00 with FREE shipping.

All you need to do is add a cheap item ($1+) and you will qualify for the gift certificate.

Click here for more info and to buy the ipod mini

They are currently out of stock but typically fill orders in 2-4 weeks.

If you don't want to wait you can get a 15gb regular iPod or any other $250+ electronics items and get the $50 gift certificate.

(Purchase before 8/1 to get the gift certificate)

Posted July 2, 2004 in Music | TrackBack (0) | Comments (2)

Sony taking on the iPod

sony network walkman hard drive mp3 player

Sony have announced their supposed "iPod killer", a 20gb hard drive based player, it is the smallest 20gb player around (a little bigger than a credit card and under half an inch thick.

Price is expected to be under $400 when it is released in the US, and battery life is supposed to be 30 hours (3 times that of a comparable iPod).

One downside to the device is that it only plays Sony's proprietary ATRAK format.... when will device manufacturer's accept that people who own legitimately purchased music want to be able to play it in the CD Player, PC, and "Walkman" without buying a song 3 times.

More from CNN

Posted July 2, 2004 in Music | TrackBack (0) | Comments (0)

$100 off iPod Mini

ipod mini

If you enjoy listening to spoken word books there is a great way to get the hot new iPod mini MP3/music player:

Subscribe for a year to Audible.com at $14.95 a month and get a $100 off coupon for the iPod mini (or another from a large selection of MP3 players and Pocket PCs).

What does this really mean?... the $14.95 subscription gets you one full audio book and one newspaper/periodical per month (for $19.95/month you get 2 full books), and you get a coupon code for $100 off anything at crutchfield.com. Like all stores they are sold out of the iPod mini at the moment but expect to get it in stock on 6/30.

I was tempted to do this last time they offered it but waited too long, this time I have signed up and ordered an iPod mini, and will post a review once it gets here (assuming I can get it away from my wife for long enough).


Continue reading "$100 off iPod Mini"

Posted June 21, 2004 in Music | TrackBack (0) | Comments (0)

Creative Zen Touch Announced

creative zen touch mp3 player

Creative, the company best known for the high quality Sound Blaster sound cards, is coming out with an interesting sounding upgrade to their Nomad range of Portable MP3 players, and it looks like it will give the iPod a run for it's money.

It's main innovation is using a touchpad as a scroll wheel for moving through the menu options.

It has a 20gb hard drive, supports MP3 and WMA, and creative claims it has 3 times the battery life of the iPod.

It is currently available for preorder at Amazon.com for $269.99

Posted June 8, 2004 in Music | TrackBack (0) | Comments (0)

Good Ipod Mini Price

ipod mini discount bargains

Amazon has a great price at the moment on the Ipod mini 4gb in all 5 colors (silver, blue, pink, green, gold). The price is $236.54 (I love round numbers!) with FREE shipping.


Click here for more info and to buy the ipod mini

Posted May 18, 2004 in Music | TrackBack (0) | Comments (0)

iPod Mini: Perfect Size Storage

ipod mini storage

Jupiter Research has come out with a survey that indicates 90 of consumers have no more than 1000 songs on their PC... which would all fit perfectly on the 4bg drive of the iPod Mini.

Full story at news.com

Posted April 23, 2004 in Music | TrackBack (0) | Comments (0)

Ipod Quality Problems

ipod min problems

Apple's Executive Vice President of Worldwide Sales and Operations has replied to the reports of problems with the audio jack of the iPod mini coming loose causing sound quality problems.

He mostly dismissed the reports and said he was confident of the quality of the iPod minis.

Methinks he is going to end up with egg on his face.

(more from The Mac Observer)

Posted April 15, 2004 in Music | TrackBack (1) | Comments (2)

Wireless Media Players

wireless media players

Cnet has a review of 4 different wireless media players, devices that wirelessly stream music (and in some cases pictures and video) from your PC to your TV.

They review the Slim Devices Squuzebox, the Icube Play@TV NMP-4000, the Prismiq MediaPlayer and the Creative Sound Blaster Wireless Music.

The Prismiq Media Player got the highest rating and can be found at Amazon for $199.99 with Free Shipping

Posted April 2, 2004 in Music | TrackBack (0) | Comments (0)

Bluetooth Surround Sound Speakers

samsung surround sound bluetooth speakers

Samsung will launch in May their Samsung HT-DB390 Wireless Home Theater System. Hmm, my birthday is in May :)

The system is one of the first, if not the first that uses bluetooth for connecting wirelessly to the satellite speakers.

(thanks I4U)

Continue reading "Bluetooth Surround Sound Speakers"

Posted March 27, 2004 in Music | TrackBack (0) | Comments (0)

Sony 6:1 Surround Receiver

sony surround sound receiver

It would be great to have a $2000 receiver but I think its a little pointless unless you have the latest greatest $10k+ home theater system. Most people will be more than happy with a receiver like this one:
Sony STRDE895B Surround Receiver: $227.91 at onecall.com (with 1% pass program discount, sign up on their homepage)... regularly $399.

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Posted March 25, 2004 in Music | TrackBack (0) | Comments (0)

Polishing your iPod!

apple ipod 20gb mini

Sound very freudian to me!

iPodlounge reviews two different creams intended to restore your iPod to its factory fresh shinyness. My question is... do they keep the batteries going longer as well?

Posted March 24, 2004 in Music | TrackBack (0) | Comments (0)

New 50gb iPod Coming

Engadget reports that a new iPod is coming soon from Apple. The word is 50gb hard drive, 2" color screen, video-out, photo viewing and a navigation wheel.

No link to buy it yet......

Posted March 17, 2004 in Music | TrackBack (0) | Comments (0)

Hottest MP3 player around

It's the iPod mini, right?

Nope, It's the Creative Labs Nomad MuVo 4 GB MP3 Player, why? because it's similar to the mini in storage and size but its $50 cheaper. You can also crack it open and remove the 4GB CF microdrive to use in your digital camera etc, the drive alone sells for over $500.

Amazon.com has the MuVo 4 GB for $200.99

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Posted March 15, 2004 in Music | TrackBack (0) | Comments (0)

Alternative discount on iPod mini

If you enjoy listening to spoken word books there is an even cheaper way to get the hot new iPod mini that the Target coupon I posted yesterday:

Subscribe for a year to Audible.com at $14.95 a month and get a $100 off coupon for the iPod mini (or another from a large selection of MP3 players and Pocket PCs).

Offer expires 3/31

Posted March 15, 2004 in Music | TrackBack (0) | Comments (0)

iPod Mini discounted

Its the latest cool gotta have gadget, much smaller than the old iPod but can still store 4gb of data. Get it at target for $225 with 10% off coupon code TDAW2SAVETEN (exp 3/31)

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Posted March 14, 2004 in Music | TrackBack (0) | Comments (0)

Human Powered Radio

The world is a dangerous place, 9/11, 2 day power cuts in New York, terrorist attacks everywhere... in case something bad happens and you are without power here is the best human powered radio around: The Freeplay Summit $99.99 at Amazon.com. It receives the usual AM and FM as well as long wave and short wave, and is powered by a rechargable battery, solar power and a wind-up handle! (product found at Gizmodo)

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Posted March 13, 2004 in Music | TrackBack (0) | Comments (0)
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ShinyPlastic is brought to you by Search Network and operated by Mark:

Mark is a thirty-something guy living in New York who loves to own the latest tech gadgets but also loves a positive bank balance.

Mark visited gadget sites that list every upcoming gadget but dont let you buy them, and coupon sites that list great deals but don't tell you what is hot; hence Shiny Plastic, how to get the nice Shiny Plastic tech gadgets without ruining your credit.

Mark reviews every fun gadget that he buys, searches other technology sites for interesting items, and regularly searches all the online stores for the best deals.
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