I got my 4G iPod yesterday. Since I'm dutch I ordered it at the dutch apple store. To my surprise I found a german and french manual inside. It's not uncommon that a manufacturer adds a french manual for the dutch market as well, since our southern neighbours, the belgians, speak dutch in the northern pard and french in the southern part of Belgium.
But why just a german and a french manual?? A few moments later it struck me; 'dutch' in dutch is 'nederlands', 'german' in german is 'deutsch'...
You yanks never learn, do you?! wink

I upgraded from a 3G iPod. I have to admit though that I couldn't stand the fact that my 3G iPod was only two months old when Apple launched the 4G iPod...

Posted by Leon on July 27, 2004 at 4:47 AM (PDT) Comment 21

i'm in italy and received manuals for all languages.

i don't think that is a fault.

we are in europe and how many languages we have...?

i still continue with my 3G - 15GB and i'm very satisfied...

i'm only disappointed for a missing firmware for "old" ipods...

Posted by alby on July 27, 2004 at 5:34 AM (PDT) Comment 22

I think the gray clickwheel adds to the cosmetic appeal, providing a welcome bit of contrast to the otherwise blank, white face. I like the new 4G design very much.

I have carefully listened to all prior generations of ipod, and having been rather unimpressed with their sound output, except for the mini. But with the 4G ipod, I am very happy to hear what, IMHO, is a dramatic improvement in the quality of the sound output of my VBR encoded MP3 files. It is this much needed boost in quality, plus the clickwheel and good battery life, that finally had me saying that the ipod was the way to go.

Posted by Larry on July 27, 2004 at 5:36 AM (PDT) Comment 23

Anyone had any problems with a Powermac G3 recognizing their 4g ipod? I am forced to use a g3 tower at work, althought it is as up to date as it can get with OSX it simply will not mount the ipod to the desktop, after restarting the computer and iPod, works fine on my g4 laptop. Anyone have a clue why?

Posted by Carlos Everygad on July 27, 2004 at 5:41 AM (PDT) Comment 24

great article. thanks so much.

Posted by matt on July 27, 2004 at 5:45 AM (PDT) Comment 25

My new 20Gb 4G iPod also has the audio interference defect. Very disappointed with this flaw.

I am using Shure e-3c headphones I have audio interference and static when the hard drive is running and at the beginning of songs.

Posted by Eliott on July 27, 2004 at 6:16 AM (PDT) Comment 26

Your articles and reviews are great and quite helpful. However, the users of your site are one nit-picky bunch! Who the hell cares about the damn box, the dock, or a remote control, or that the buttons don't light up? I find the remote control to be more bothersome than helpful, with it's extra long cord. I find a dock to be pointless unless one plans to hook their iPod up to a stereo, or wants to make it look cute on their desks as it charges(!!!). I am glad the packaging is cheaper so I don't have to pay for it! I very much like the click wheel as it provides a bit of distraction from the whiteness of it all.
The bottom line: this 4G is a much better value, makes the iPod more accessible to those who can't be spending $400 here and there, the battery life is longer, and yes, the machine is very cute, all by itself.

Posted by mariposa on July 27, 2004 at 6:27 AM (PDT) Comment 27

I don't understand how recessing a button is classy... it's just necessary on the 3G to give you something to feel. Likewise, the lights are necessary to find the buttons! The 4G's wheel solves those problems much more simply.

As for the wheel being matter instead of glossy, that's a GREAT move. The Mini's wheel is matte, and that means your thumb doesn't stick when you're trying to use it. The stickyness of the 3G wheel is slight, but very annoying to me.

I think the reaction to the looks of the new iPod are just like the reactions to the 3G: a certain segment of people HATED the 3G just because it was different. They got used to it. The 4G will take getting used to as well--and it's a much simpler look with the trademark wheel extra visible. A good design.

Posted by Nagromme on July 27, 2004 at 6:34 AM (PDT) Comment 28

And iPod's competitors don't tend to have easily-replaced batteries either... it's a miniaturization thing, not an Apple thing.

Posted by Nagromme on July 27, 2004 at 6:37 AM (PDT) Comment 29

Great article, guys. One thing it seems no one has really addressed (except Apple) is the viability of using a 3G dock with a 4G-20GB iPod. Does anyone know if the 3G dock will operate correctly with the new unit? If so, is the 1mm size difference enough to make it too wobbly in the dock to feel like it won't fall over?

I'm just curious, because some jerk stole my iPod a couple weeks ago and I need a new one. I have the old dock and remote, but I need a new iPod and case.

Posted by skaman24 on July 27, 2004 at 6:41 AM (PDT) Comment 30

Great review, but...

"we found that the battery meter was far more accurate than before: its "50%" and "10%" indications were right on the mark, though pleasantly, the iPod didn't die at "0%," and rather kept on playing for around 30 additional minutes"

Well, which is it, fella, "right on the mark" or it keeps playing for 30 more minutes after it reaches o%?

Posted by Juan on July 27, 2004 at 6:41 AM (PDT) Comment 31

Well, I have spent a great LONG weekend with my brand new 4G 20gb iPod and I am VERY pleased. My wife got me a 3G 15gb about 4 months ago, and I had already filled up its hard drive with music/movie audio and the battery already sucked... So, using the replacement plan that my wife bought from Best Buy, I went and exchanged a great (3G) iPod for a different great (4G) iPod. I admit that I like the way my 3G looked, but the 4G is more efficient to use. AND, once the 4G skins come out, it will safely be stored in my pocket for morning till night! The extra memory and battery life are worth EXCHANGING my 3G. BUT I wouldn't have done an upgrade if it would have cost me hundreds of dollars. Now.... if I can just get my stupid PC working good again using my new Internet Security, maybe I will be downloading some new music for the Pod. (I wish I had a Powerbook!) Anyway, great review... I love this site!

Posted by Curtis on July 27, 2004 at 6:56 AM (PDT) Comment 32

I also think most of the gripes about the new ipod are a bit nit picky. I dont really care if my cables are nicely wrapped, or about the art work on the box. The battery life improvements and the additional 5gigs u get for 299 are reason enought to upgrade. Granted you've had your ipod for a significant amount of time.

Posted by robtheman on July 27, 2004 at 6:58 AM (PDT) Comment 33

>Great review, but...
>Well, which is it, fella, "right on the mark" or it >keeps playing for 30 more minutes after it >reaches o%?

this seemed easy enough for me to understand, what is wrong about this? 50 and 10 are "right on the mark" but 0 is generous and gives you 30 minutes warning.

Posted by ilike2read on July 27, 2004 at 7:13 AM (PDT) Comment 34

"this seemed easy enough for me to understand, what is wrong about this? 50 and 10 are "right on the mark" but 0 is generous and gives you 30 minutes warning"

If there are 30 more minutes after 0%, how on earth do you know that 50 and 10 are right on the mark?

Posted by Juan on July 27, 2004 at 7:20 AM (PDT) Comment 35

I can't imagine that anyone is going to decide not to buy an iPod because the new packaging uses recycled paperboard instead of styrofoam. Big whoop.

And I think most of the people whining about the grey click wheel probably haven't seen one in person. And they probably have a 3G iPod. And they're probably looking for something to criticize so they don't feel bad about not having the latest model.

Posted by MT on July 27, 2004 at 7:21 AM (PDT) Comment 36

Oops, nevermind, I understand now. Sorry about that.

Posted by Juan on July 27, 2004 at 7:36 AM (PDT) Comment 37

Why isn't anyone complaining about the new "shuffle" feature on the main menu? Am I the ONLY one that thinks it should be a toggle between songs, albums, and off instead of what they made it to be? What it does now is it re-sorts the songs of a playlist. What happens when you re-sort the songs of a playlist, and then want to go back to listening to it non-shuffled? You've got to go into the settings menu to change it. But guess what. No really, guess. the shuffle is already set to off. So what do you have to do to get it to go back to normal? I played around briefly with a 4G at the apple store and couldn't figure it out.

Posted by Russell on July 27, 2004 at 7:45 AM (PDT) Comment 38

I have a 20GB G4 and I notice the same thing wrt hard drive spin up noise at the start of a high-bitrate track. Since it's the first iPod i've owned (i've used a few, but never long enough to notice anything odd about them), I thought this was normal to happen occasionally with hard-drive based players. I'll have a talk with Apple support about this, too. Thanks for pointing this out and for the great review!

Other than that (which isn't terribly noticeable), I'm really enjoying it.

Posted by newbiePodder on July 27, 2004 at 7:46 AM (PDT) Comment 39

I think it's for the best that the "new generation" of iPods offers incremental upgrades to an already stellar package. The increased battery life is great, but probably not enough to draw existing 3G owners into a new product. Apple is really building a community with the iPod, more so than any product they've released in the past (no small feat considering how tightly knit the Mac community is). I'm a PC user, a pre-OSX mac detractor, and a very happy mini owner. One good way to keep people in a community like that happy is to avoid rendering their purchases obsolete every six months (a la Sony's CLIE line), and Apple seems to be taking this line. Not releasing a video iPod (or something else that completely breaks from the current iPod line) may just be Apple sitting on their laurels, but it's not like the market is saturated yet. They can still get new users with the 4Gs (and heavily discounted 3Gs) without making people feel like their 10-month-old 3G was rendered worthless by a new product. Personally, I think it's a smart move.

Posted by keville on July 27, 2004 at 7:59 AM (PDT) Comment 40

Great review.

I have to disagree with you on the packagin graphics. You're right, it certainly doesn't showcase the product. From graphic design and marketing point of view, it successfully takes on a different concept entirely. The strong colors and bold graphics convey the excitement that music can inspire. I think it is a more emotional connection with music rather than a glorification of the product's industrial design. It's just a different take on how to present the iPod.

By the way, the photos of all the iPod generations packages missed one. While it represented boxes for each generations, it left out the boxes with musicians (Billy Holliday, Dizzy, Hendrix, etc). I believe that was later part of Gen1. Like this current packaging, it didn't showcase the product, but rather it attempted to convey the love of music.

Posted by Starboard on July 27, 2004 at 8:19 AM (PDT) Comment 41

You guys complain way too much. the whole purpose of an ipod is to be the best digital music player and the ipod is the best. I agree everything else is second. The click wheel is so you can get to your songs faster!! Who cares how it looks?!??!

An ipod is an ipod and that is final.

Posted by itsanipod!! on July 27, 2004 at 8:32 AM (PDT) Comment 42

I was wondering if you could update the review, checking if Smart Playlists using the "playlist" and/or "grouping" fields on the G4 can update independently of iTunes?
As you might know already, using those fields on a G3 Smart Playlist required syncing to update the playlist.

Posted by Egosphere on July 27, 2004 at 8:47 AM (PDT) Comment 43

hey everyone....i just ordered a mini ipod and im deciding if i should change my order to the 4th gen. 20 gb ipod with the new click wheel. I think it looks 10x better then the 3rd gen one....but i still think its a little big but now that i d/l itunes....neone have a suggestion if i should keep my green mini(that looks really good in person) or get the new ipod

Posted by steve z on July 27, 2004 at 9:10 AM (PDT) Comment 44

"Nate: It's less than 1mm thinner, actually only .04". Thanks for pointing that out, it's been addressed."

.04" is more than a millimeter. An inch is 25.4 mm.

Btw., I think Apple only wanted to decrease the price (quite significantly, I must add) while maintaining margins... And address the battery issue.

I have no idea when the next generation comes out, but right now the iPod really "ain't broke." I'd like to think that a vastly improved 5th generation is coming for Christmas, but the iPod is selling so well that I don't think we'll see a generation leap for a year or so.

Posted by puiz on July 27, 2004 at 9:17 AM (PDT) Comment 45
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