Mactechedu Podcast: Episode 121: Ping this Podcast Please

In this show we…

give our wire management tip of the week,

have issues with voice control,

meet the new shuffle (same as the old(er) shuffle),

place a buy order on the Nano wristwatch,

face the new iTouch,

crab about the iOS4 update being November,

wonder what the Ping is going on in music networking,


throw away our old AppleTV while eyeing a Roku box.

via Episode 121: Ping this Podcast Please.


My Week With the iPod Classic

I recently acquired an iPod classic when I bought a new Mac a few months ago, and I love the thing. Not really sure what I need it for, but I love it. So far, all it has done is sit on my desk and gather dust, while comfortably storing literally every bit of music and video I own. It is a beautiful piece of technology, well crafted, sleek, contemporary; in a word, Classic.

Still, my iPhone has remained my weapon of choice when it comes to taking my music on the go. It is effective and convenient, if only carrying 16 gigs worth of stuff. So, I decided to give the Classic a go on the road, and see if it’s superior storage capacity and tactile interface would sway me from the iPhone once and for all. For one week, the Classic became my go to guy in the car and while out, and my iPhone sat in my pocket.

Having all of that stuff with me all the time was pretty sweet. Anything I wanted to hear, whenever I wanted it. Genius playlists were well populated and easy to make. And having a real iPod in the car again was a nice trip down memory lane, to be sure.

Unfortunately, it was mostly downside. Don’t get me wrong, I still love the Classic, but after a couple of years using the iPhone, the old iPod was not as easy to use anymore. Just try to turn off the shuffle on a Classic. You have to go out of the music, back to the preferences, turn off “shuffle songs”, then navigate your way back to whatever it was you were listening to. As a frequent whole-album-listener, this is a crucial feature for me, and on the iPhone it is only one click away.

I also found my self surprised at how much I missed shake-to-shuffle and voice control on the iPhone. Even though I complain about how poorly these features work, they are there and I miss them when they’re not around.

Of course, taking a phone call was expectedly painful. Where the transition from music to call to music again is a pleasant one on the iPhone, it is a real hassle when listening to the music on one device and taking a call on the other. Ahh, remember the good ol’ days?? Trying to turn down the volume on that AC/DC track while fumbling for your phone in your pocket, all the while attempting to keep your car on the road? Don’t try this at home, folks. The whole experience has led me to believe that using the iPhone is actually a safer choice, at least.

So, my bottom line. I love my iPod Classic, but I am sticking with everything on my iPhone. I like the idea that I could take everything with me, if I wanted to. Usually, I don’t want to.

(Originally posted in my music blog,