Four iPod-Related Thoughts

The 3G iPhone comes out in a couple weeks. I have had a Treo 650 for probably four years now, I’m over 2 year out of contract but I’ve been waiting for something to grab my attention. I ignored the iPhone last year because of the lack of 3G, I may get a 3G iPhone. We’ll see, I am waiting to see how it handles my “non-Apple” email. It would mean switching carriers, but that isn’t really too big a deal – AT&T works pretty well here and seems to get good receiption on my apartment. Check backin a month.

My existing iPod Video 30gb has served me pretty well – I take it everywhere I go. I had a problem a few months ago that the headphone jack broke (only audio from one headphone). I had it fixed at TekServe (a local iPod shop). This last Saturday this it broke again. I took it back to TekServe and learned that it was 90 days to the day since I had it fixed last time, so I was on the very last day of their warranty. They fixed it for free, but if I had waited one more day to bring it in I would have had to pay for the repair again. Yay!

My previous headphones were the Etymotic ER6i – I loved them. They were comfortable, light, provided great isolation, really nice sound, relatively reasonably priced. The one really nice thing about the ER6i headphones is they have a “flat response”, so they don’t artifically boost the bass, etc. Sadly, their cord is somewhat lightweight and I accidentally stretched the cord and destroyed them. I am researching how to fix them (Etymotic will not repair them), but in the mean time I found a really good deal on a pair of  Shure SE210 headphones. In general, they sound great with good isolation. The dowside is that they are a touch bulkier, the cord is noticbly heavier and they don’t come with a “shirt clip” to offset the extra weight of the cord, but they have a nice feature that the majority of the cord cam be detached and replaced if I break it – which is incredibly attractive since I have now stretched out the cord on two pairs of headphones. I have rigged up a shirt clip, but I would like to find something a bit more professional looking.

Finally, I’ve been meaning to mention this for a long time — for my birthday I got iHome IH9 alarm clock for my iPod. In short, I reall love it. The only feature it lacks is an “auto time set”. The only thing it doesn’t seem to do well is play AM radio, even using the included external antenna. It works with the iPod beautifully and intuitively. The FM radio works well. The alarm can be set to 2-day (weekend), 5-day (week-day), or 7-day. The alarm itself can be set to buzzer, radio, iPod, or a specific iPod play list. It is pretty much just the right number of buttons and they are logically laid out. The display backlight can be set to (something like) 6 brightness levels ranging for blinding to off – I personally thing there should be a few more settings between their dimmest version and “off”, but it is nice that I can turn the blacklight completely off and it emits no light at all. At night I just leave it completely dark. Finally, unlike most clock radios, the IH9 has really good sound. I don’t think anybody would confuse it for a Bose Soundwave, but it sounds very nice.

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