Sunday, January 01, 2006

Ipod photo 60GB review

My brothers gave me an ipod photo 60G for my birthday, and it's taken me this long before getting around to a review. The first thing I did was to take it on a 16 mile hike up half-dome. (Half-dome is not a wilderness experience, so it's not like you're losing anything by listening to music) The ipod held up fine on the 10 hour hike, and seemed to handle abuse just fine.

I did acquire a Speck skin for the ipod (hint: don't use the screen protector, it scratches the screen!) pretty early on.

There's something special about having your entire music collection in one place (and having 60GB means you'll never have to choose which CDs you bring with you), and the ipod does sound good when used with a decent set of headphones.

The big minuses have to do with the hard drive: my ipod seems to be particularly sensitive to knocks or sharp motions, which don't cause my ipod to skip but do cause it to suddenly stop playing until I push the play button again. It even does that when I'm just moving the ipod a little quickly. The sudden stop doesn't happen a lot when hiking with my ipod in my camelbak, but does seem to happen a distressing number of times when cycling with it in my jersey pockets. (I've since switched to an ipod shuffle for cycling) I see people running with the ipod strapped to their arms, so clearly, those armband things would probably work for cycling as well, but I don't like the idea of having something wrapped around my arm, and my shuffle works just fine for situations where I'm likely to get knocked around.

In any case, I have the ipod to thank for the sudden increase in music listening (much more in the last 3 months than in the previous 3 years combined), and access to podcasts (I highly recommend Radio Memories podcasts, a nice collection of old-time radio broadcasts during the golden age of radio). On the other hand, given how it has caused me to spend more money buying CDs to feed the darn thing (a direct consequence of my listening to more music), maybe I shouldn't be so thankful!
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