Ten Things You Want to Know About the 2007 iPods | iLounge Article

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Ten Things You Want to Know About the 2007 iPods

As always, we’ve assembled a list of some of the surprising new iPod details we gathered at Apple’s Special Event, and published them separately here for your immediate consumption.

10: Sizes: iPod touch is physically smaller than the iPhone. Not only is it thinner—8mm versus the iPhone’s 11.6mm—it’s also a little shorter, measuring 4.3” tall rather than 4.5” tall. That’s not as short as the 4.1” iPod—now aka iPod classic—so you can’t stuff an iPod touch into all of the big screen video display docks that are out there now. The new iPod nano has the most unusual form factor of the bunch, measuring 2.75” tall by 2.06” wide by .26” thick. That’s the same thickness as the last nano, but 3/4” shorter, and .46” wider.

9: Video: Video output is now universal across all iPods except the shuffle. Any third-generation nano, iPod classic, or iPod touch can be connected to your TV set using Apple’s new $49 component or composite AV cables, which come with a USB Power Adapter to keep the iPod charged rather than burning aggressively through its battery. An Apple representative told us that the component video cables now enable each iPod to display videos at the full 640x480 resolution of the original iTunes Store or user-encoded files, rather than being limited to 320x240 or thereabouts. Video output is still missing from the iPhone.

8: Audio: We tested each of the new iPods briefly with a pair of Ultimate Ears UE-11 Pro earphones. The base noise level was lowest in the iPod classic, and slightly higher in the nano and iPod touch. It was disappointing to see that Apple has yet again dropped the ball on offering true graphic equalization for any of these iPods, and now just puts images of the old EQ presets off to the sides of the iPod classic and nano interfaces.

7: Synchronization: Thankfully, iTunes synchronization is “iPod-style,” not iPhone/Apple TV style, so you can still drag and drop files directly from the iTunes window onto any of the iPods. We were concerned that Apple was going to try and force playlist-style synchronization onto iPod users, but this hasn’t happened.

6: Easier Shuffling: The new iPod classic and nano Now Playing screen now includes, after several button presses, the ability to turn on shuffle songs or albums modes without returning to the iPod’s main menu.

5: Cover Flow: Cover Flow on the new iPods is okay. It is a bit more sluggish than on the iPhone and iPod touch, and you need to navigate through it with the Click Wheel, then click the button to select an album, flip it around, and select a song. Then you’ll need to exit the album and roll around again. Touch controls on iPhone and iPod touch make this better.

4: Greater Music Menu Customization: You can now customize both the main and music menus of the iPod classic and iPod nano—a feature designed to help you cut down on scrolling, especially given the ever-expanding audio options Apple has added to the iPods.

3: Safari on iPod touch: It feels just like it does on the iPhone, but as we were playing around, we saw a debug feature for Safari on the iPod touch, which tests pages to see whether they generate errors. It’s an option hidden in the settings menu; we doubt it’ll be there in the final version of the device.

2: Upgrades, not Downgrades: Apple reps told us that the new iPods lose nothing from their predecessor models; they only gain. So something that worked on the last model should still work on the new one, only with cosmetic improvements. This isn’t always the case with the iPod touch relative to the iPhone. Applications work almost identically to one another—YouTube on the touch loses the ability to e-mail clips to your friends, as does the photos feature—but otherwise they’re the same programs.

1: Games: The iPod nano now comes with three Apple games, including Vortex and Klondike (updated solitaire with superior graphics). All past iPod games need to be revised to work on the iPod nano (and possibly the iPod classic?); three additional games, including Pac-Man, will be available for purchase immediately.

« Folders for playlists support and the new iPods

iLounge’s Big Picture View of Apple’s Beat Goes On Event »

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Comments

1

One other question I’d really love answered is whether the iTunes Wi-Fi store supports the downloading of audio podcasts. Any indications of that functionality?

Posted by bflo on September 5, 2007 at 8:50 PM (CDT)

2

I actually have two questions, only one of which you’ll probably be able to answer.

1) Does the iPod touch use regular headphones or does it require an adapter or special headphones like the iPhone?

2) Because it’s running on different software (OSX) will the iPod touch work with installed car kits (such as mine from BWM for my Mini) for controls through the car’s stereo faceplates or will I need to keep an old style iPod around for that?

Thanks to any who can answer those.

Posted by Jeffery Simpson on September 5, 2007 at 9:26 PM (CDT)

3

Jeremy,

Are you sure that the iPhone can’t output video? If you check the product pages for the component and composite cables it lists the iPhone as a supported device…

http://store.apple.com/1-800-MY-APPLE/WebObjects/AppleStore?productLearnMore=MB128LL/A
http://store.apple.com/1-800-MY-APPLE/WebObjects/AppleStore.woa/wo/StoreReentry.wo?productLearnMore=MB129LL/A

Posted by wowok1234 on September 6, 2007 at 3:11 AM (CDT)

4

Great coverage guys.
Though I’ve been very critical of Apple’s refusal to include graphic EQ in the past, after playing with Rockbox on my 5G, I must say I wasn’t all that impressed with the minimal sound quality improvements of their graphic EQ. Could it be maybe Apple was unable to get graphic EQ to perform any better, maybe that is why they don’t include it?

Posted by fondy44 on September 6, 2007 at 8:19 AM (CDT)

5

So what are they going to do with all of the 2G nanos that seem like they just came out? Price reduction, I guess, but they would have to go pretty low to compete with the new lower price for a nano that has video.

Posted by pemvapor on September 6, 2007 at 8:34 AM (CDT)

6

I think they would have had a winner in this 3G nano if they’d turned the screen on its side to keep the “stick” like format.  Then a simple rotation to view the video, just as you do on the iPhone and iPod touch, would be all it takes.  I would have bought a video nano like that, but this one, I don’t know, I’ll have to play with it at the store to see if I like it.

Posted by Cool Cat on September 6, 2007 at 10:41 AM (CDT)

7

The the new IPOD classic, nano, and shuffle will not work with Mac OS X Panther effectively ruling out using the new IPODs with a Mac 2 1/2 years old.  Given that the changes to the shuffle are cosmetic, this must be a business driven decision rather than a system driven decision.

Posted by Pugs on September 6, 2007 at 10:18 PM (CDT)

8

I have been using the belkin tunetalk for interviews, will the new generation of ipods support the tunetalk?

Posted by elitekey on September 7, 2007 at 10:08 AM (CDT)

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