Apple's 3G iPod shuffle reviewed: a step too far?

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Comments

  • solipsismsolipsism Posts: 25,726member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Dorotea View Post


    Apple earbuds are uncomfortable.



    My ear cartilage agrees with you. I'd rather get waterboarded at Gitmo than have to wear those things for a day. They don't eveb sound good when sitting in my ear properly. If I want the best sound I have to turn them sideways so the speaker faces front. I must some funky ears.



    Apple's new in-ear phones are nice if you want to shell out $79 for a decent pair of headphones. Good quality for the price, though the bass could be more pronounced.
  • bill_fbill_f Posts: 6member
    Further feature not mentioned in review. Pause a track then double-click. Next song is announced; not the song you want then double-click again and it then the following song is announced etc. Don't need to hear whole of title: as soon as you recognize it as one you want then click to play or double-click to next song announcement without it finishing the announcement. I hope you can guess what triple-click does on pause mode! So choose your song from the playlist fairly painlessly if you keep playlists down to album lengths.
  • jowie74jowie74 Posts: 540member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Mr. H View Post


    Super cheap? Er no, this new shuffle costs £59.



    Yes... And didn't the last gen Shuffle also only cost £32? I know it was 2GB not 4GB but where's the old £32 price point? Or has that gone because of the poxy pound?
  • rfrmacrfrmac Posts: 67member
    Well, I like the new Shuffle. It is light, easy to control, love the voice - wish I had it on my iTouch. The price is right and it holds enough. A step to far? No, I step in the right direction. The nice thing is, if you would prefer another type of iPod, just go buy it. What's the big deal. Nothing Apple does is for everyone.
  • bdkennedy1bdkennedy1 Posts: 1,459member
    This iPod is a disaster. Now that the controls are separated from the Shuffle, you are guaranteed to accidentally leave the headphones at home with no way to control your music.



    You can no longer plug it into your car or home stereo and their list of blinking lights and button presses is a nightmare.



    They haven't simplified anything. It just looks like they have.



    Hell, had they just moved the battery to the headphones it could have been 1/3 the size it is now. I guess they'll save that for the 4th gen. Better yet, the 4th gen iPod could just be invisible - you just sing all the tunes in your head. No need for a player or headphones.
  • galleygalley Posts: 971member
    The shuffle earbuds should have had a split cable like many Sony's do. The short cord is perfect for a shuffle clipped on your sleeve or lapel.
  • wigginwiggin Posts: 2,082member
    I think they need to update the review to indicate that the USB sync cable is not only ridiculously short (which they mention), but it is also incompatible with the 2nd gen shuffle's cable. Obviously, there is no "dock" for the 3rd gen model. But potential buyers may think they can use a 3rd party cable from their 2nd gen shuffle, or the one included with the 3rd gen shuffle, to sync and charge both a 2nd gen and 3rd gen shuffle. You can't! Apple changed the order of the contacts on the 4-contact headphone jack.



    That is my understanding from other reviews I've read. And if you already own a 2nd gen, you'll need yet another free USB port or have to constantly swap cables.
  • cygnusrk727cygnusrk727 Posts: 204member
    I had two complaints with my last shuffle and two complaints only. 1) ear buds HURT and were a definite no go. 2) so small that I would misplace it for days and it finally got washed in the washer where it died. So now what? A much smaller shuffle with the controls on the god awful ear buds. And my last shuffle I connected through a cassette adapter in my truck's stereo. How would you control this new shuffle if you wanted to do that?
  • rasnetrasnet Posts: 37member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Mr. H;1393697



    [i



    Easier[/i] to use? What kind of twisted logic did you use to come to that conclusion? How is clicking a button three times to skip backward (and remembering that it's three times rather than two times, one time, two and half times whilst hopping) easier than clicking once a button marked with a "skip backward" symbol?



    Have you seen this Onion piece? This new iPod is disturbingly close in ridiculousness to the Onion's piss-take.



    I am reminded of this strip from the webcomic Bob & George
  • solipsismsolipsism Posts: 25,726member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by rfrmac View Post


    Well, I like the new Shuffle. It is light, easy to control, love the voice - wish I had it on my iTouch. The price is right and it holds enough. A step to far? No, I step in the right direction. The nice thing is, if you would prefer another type of iPod, just go buy it. What's the big deal. Nothing Apple does is for everyone.



    I'd wager that after the hype of this device dies does they will issue a firmware for the other iPods and iPhone to allow VoiceOver.



    As for the 2G Shuffles, Apple obviously realizes this is an extreme move and may not fit everyone's needs as the old shuffle has been available on the Apple Store since the day the 3G Shuffle launched. Not in the Refurbished section, either, but in the main stoer with a proper page and link on the main page clearly stating it is still available.





    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Wiggin View Post


    I think they need to update the review to indicate that the USB sync cable is not only ridiculously short (which they mention), but it is also incompatible with the 2nd gen shuffle's cable.

    [...]

    And if you already own a 2nd gen, you'll need yet another free USB port or have to constantly swap cables.



    I read that too, but is it incompatible both ways or can the 3G Shuffle use the 2G Shuffle connection type? Does it at least allow for charging?



    It's too bad that they didn't make a USB2.0 passthrough on this cable. Though people would have complained about that too.





    Quote:
    Originally Posted by cygnusrk727 View Post


    And my last shuffle I connected through a cassette adapter in my truck's stereo. How would you control this new shuffle if you wanted to do that?



    At this point, you wouldn't unless you wanted to just play it and not control it any other way. There will soon be headphones with controls for it. There will soon be cheap adapters with controls so you can use your favorite headphones.



    There is also no reason that car stereo and home theaters won't be able to control this Shuffle from their main controls. After all, this Shuffle is now the last iPod (as well as the iPhone) to be controllable by the headphone controls.



    For comparison sake, the current iPod Touch, iPod Classic and iPod Nano can use all the same controls except for the track FF/RW that the new Shuffle has. The iPhone also can use these controls except for volume control and the afore mentioned track FF/RW. I'm not sure about the track FF/RW but the volume controls require new HW so the next iPhone will get it.



    Quote:
    Originally Posted by rasnet View Post


    I am reminded of this strip from the webcomic Bob & George



    That pretty much explains it.
  • canadancanadan Posts: 21member
    I don't know why people are complaining so much about this new shuffle. I bought it and I love it for what it can do for me at the gym. Apple does seem to have a direction they're heading into with this model. I like the idea of VoiceOver which I'm sure will be perfected in time. I wouldn't be surprised if this leads Apple to explore voice command functionality at some point in the near future with their devices too. Not all iPods can do everything, that's why there are a variety to choose from. If you don't like this one because of the remote or because it has no screen, then buy the previous model or keep it if you already have it, or get one with a screen, pretty simple. If you can't connect it to your stereo devices, then connect your nano or touch or whatever other model. They can't do everything and we don't need to have every type of iPod either.
  • fleetfleet Posts: 9member
    Overall I thought this was a good review, even if I am not sure I agree with it. It had a lot of good information that helped me to understand the device better.



    What struck me as a little off were the complaints about Voice Over. My understanding is that Voice Over is not triggered every time you change songs as the review implied when they complained about the extra time it takes over the old shuffle. The complaints went on about how long the process is to change play lists versus the old player which didn't even support playlists. Adding a screen could make the process faster, but given the way that the shuffle seems to be used, many people wouldn't be able to look at the screen to do that. I think Voice Over is a great idea for offering greater control and flexibility to the shuffle without requiring people to stop what they are doing and look down at the screen. It would be great to have that functionality on an iPod or iPhone when using them in a car. These benefits were kind of glossed over in the review.
  • jeffdmjeffdm Posts: 12,933member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Mr. H View Post


    I remember when I was 17 having an AIWA walkman with inline remote (a quick Goggle found me this image, mine had the same remote, shown in bottom right); it connected via a four-pin plug like this iPod, but had properly seperated play, stop, back, forward etc. buttons in a joypad arrangement, much like the arrangement of controls on the previous shuffles.



    I had a couple Sony minidisk players that had an inline remote, which allowed the use of any headphones with the jack on the remote. It had play/pause as a button, a knob to skip tracks, a hold slider and an LCD screen to display the track ID info, and a shirt/lapel clip built in - not much room for jiggling around. It was pretty nifty for the time, I don't think I've seen it bested any since then.



    Quote:

    This new shuffle is crying out for a two-line OLED display covering the whole of the currently blank front face, and a remote control with separate buttons instead of this ridiculous control scheme.



    OLED display would be really cool.



    Quote:
    Originally Posted by thesmoth View Post


    Ah, a completely wrong fanboy, those are hard to find aren't they?



    About 99% of users i've ever seen use different headphones to those that come with the Ipod. I've had 3 ipods and i've never once even opened the ones that come with the ipod. They are well known for being terrible quality and not fitting in the ears well. I walk around university where I can easily see 100 people in a day listening to ipods and I RARELY ever see anyone with the stock head phones.



    To me, 99% looks way out of whack even for hyperbole. At a midwest university, it seemed like maybe 50%.



    Quote:
    Originally Posted by solipsism View Post


    At this point, you wouldn't unless you wanted to just play it and not control it any other way. There will soon be headphones with controls for it. There will soon be cheap adapters with controls so you can use your favorite headphones.



    Is it the same kind of connection as the iPhone 3G? It seems that there should be some adapters out that control volume. None of the examples I've seen posted so far have it. I think I had the Shure adapter. On the iPhone, not having volume control was a downside but wasn't so terrible because there were alternative controls.



    Quote:

    There is also no reason that car stereo and home theaters won't be able to control this Shuffle from their main controls. After all, this Shuffle is now the last iPod (as well as the iPhone) to be controllable by the headphone controls.



    That could be pretty cool.
  • teckstudteckstud Posts: 6,476member
    [QUOTE=solipsism;1393715]

    Quote:

    Such a lengthy review and still no mention of this being the first Shuffle to support Apple Lossless. I'm flabbergasted that this doesn't even get a nod as being the Shuffle being powerful enough to play ~1000kbps audio files.



    What good is lossless sound if the headphones don't reproduce it?



    Quote:

    In a way he is right, but it is much easier to grab the right side of your headphones to change switch tracks than trying to do it while it's on your arm or waist or elsewhere.



    Are you talking this?:



    Because surely you don't think grabbing a swinging cable while running is easier.
  • solipsismsolipsism Posts: 25,726member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by JeffDM View Post


    Is it the same kind of connection as the iPhone 3G?



    The same kind of connection, but the player's hardware doesn't have the capabilities to use all the controls the same way. But the headphones can be used with the inline remote across all models.



    For example, Apple's in-ear phones with mic and in-line remote says it isn't supported on the iPhone. Which is technically true in that the volume doesn't work, but everything else works fine.



    I see no reason why the next versions won't have the appropriate HW.
  • shunnabunichshunnabunich Posts: 160member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by bdkennedy1 View Post


    This iPod is a disaster. Now that the controls are separated from the Shuffle, you are guaranteed to accidentally leave the headphones at home with no way to control your music.



    You can no longer plug it into your car or home stereo and their list of blinking lights and button presses is a nightmare.



    They haven't simplified anything. It just looks like they have.



    Hell, had they just moved the battery to the headphones it could have been 1/3 the size it is now. I guess they'll save that for the 4th gen. Better yet, the 4th gen iPod could just be invisible - you just sing all the tunes in your head. No need for a player or headphones.



    It'll still require a one-button remote control, though - how else would they force you to tap out the name of the desired function in Morse code?



    Play: .--. .-.. .- -.--

    Pause: .--. .- ..- ... . (no, not the same as the "play" command)

    Next Track: -. . -..- - - .-. .- -.-. -.-

    Previous Track: .--. .-. . ...- .. --- ..- ... - .-. .- -.-. -.-

    Rewind: .-. . .-- .. -. -.. (but hold the last dot until finished)

    Fast Forward: ..-. .- ... - ..-. --- .-. .-- .- .-. -.. (again, holding the last dot until finished)



    Because that is the direction they're actively pursuing here. It already feels like Morse code, they just haven't gone all the way yet. If anything, the reviewer was being just a little too apologetic, but thankfully nowhere near the distasteful depths of iGroveling Dan Dilger stooped to in his recent article on the shuffle.
  • teckstudteckstud Posts: 6,476member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Adjei View Post


    Don't see what's the big deal about this shuffle. Used one at the store, nice to use and control, voice feature is nice too. Might pick one up.



    How did you try it at the store- with ear bud headphones that hundreds have used?

    When I went they showed it to me from a salesperson's pocket with the ugly USB dangledopper hanging off it.
  • wizard69wizard69 Posts: 11,769member
    Though I'm not a shuffle sort of person, atleast I don't own one at the moment, this gas to be Apples best shuffle ever. It is the first of the shuffle series that caused any interest on my part at all.



    The reasons are many and start with a reasonable amount of storage. The controls are an important factor two as that provides for device control for active people. For shuffles target user base it is about perfect.



    Shuffle isn't perfect of course and I have to wonder why all these so called in depth reports never comment on shuffle operating temperature range. It is very limited and does impact users.



    I predict brisk sales of the new shuffle.







    Dave
  • teckstudteckstud Posts: 6,476member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Mr. H View Post








    Have you seen this Onion piece? This new iPod is disturbingly close in ridiculousness to the Onion's piss-take.




    Hysterical!
  • solipsismsolipsism Posts: 25,726member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by teckstud View Post


    What good is lossless sound if the headphones don't reproduce it?



    First of all, Lossless doesn't indicate the quality of the audio, only that the codec used has not reduced the quality when it was encoded. Your assertion that you can't tell the difference on the Shuffle between 128kbps audio and Lossless files from CDs while using good headphones is laughable. I can hear the difference between 128kbps and 256kbps AAC on my 2G shuffle.



    The real plus of having Apple Lossless on the 3G Shuffle is that I can go back to having a single music library and not have to use manage separate libraries using lower bitrate lossy audio because the player cannot handle the load. The Shuffle has always (and still has) an option to convert to 128kbps. If I get tired of the duplicates I may just get the new Shuffle.



    edit: It's technically one library, but I have duplicate song titles for the Shuffle.





    Quote:

    Are you talking this?

    image: http://www.monstercable.com/images_d...phone_glam.jpg

    Because surely you don't think grabbing a swinging cable while running is easier.



    No, I'm talking about the in-line controller on the headphones that come with the Shuffle and iPhone.
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