So, you've managed to get your hands on one of the world's most popular MP3 players, the Apple iPod Shuffle. Accessorizing the littlest of iPods presents a special challenge because it doesn't share the same dock connector as its larger siblings. But that doesn't mean it should be left out in the cold, sad and caseless. To that end, I've rounded up a handful of that will work perfectly with both the second- and third-generation Shuffles. Check 'em out.
Ultimate Ears has been a familiar name to musicians and other audio professionals for a decade, but the company has gained quite a following with its consumer line as well. Earphones in its Metro.fi, Super.fi, and Triple.fi lines range in affordability and scale nicely, from those perfect for discerning listeners to those only audiophiles require.
Falling in at the bottom is the $79 Metro.fi 2, a rather standard-looking set that offers nicely balanced audio to go with its affordable price tag. Unfortunately, getting a secure and comfortable fit may be a challenge for some people. Read the full review.… Read more
After Friday's iPhone delirium, I'm going to take the helm of the iMania and steer it in a slightly different direction: toward the iPod Touch and the latest release of iTunes, Version 7.7. Namely, let's address whether there's a noticeable difference in screen and sound quality when it comes to the Touch, other iPod models, and the iPhone. Also, should someone who has been using the same version of iTunes for five years upgrade to the latest software?
Q: I am thinking of buying an iPod Touch but have a couple questions. First, I heard … Read more
Colorful earbuds have become increasingly popular with headphone manufacturers, possibly because of consumer demand for something a bit more stylish than plain white or black. It's no wonder: Earphones are basically accessories that serve to pipe music to your ears, so they might as well be fashionable. Radius is one company that has popped up with an impressive array of color-coordinated headphones. One model, the Atomic Strap, even attaches to the bottom of your third-generation iPod Nano and lets you sport it around your neck. At $40, these 'phones are quite a value for bass-loving Nano owners. Read the full review.… Read more
Ultimate Ears has been a familiar name to musicians and other audio professionals for a decade, but the company has gained quite a following with its consumer line as well. Earphones in its Metro.fi, Super.fi, and Triple.fi lines range in affordability and scale nicely from discerning listeners to audiophiles. Falling in toward the middle of the bottom is the $129 Super.fi 4, a stylish, low-profile set that comes with a reasonable array of accessories. The earphones offer some of the clearest audio we've come across, but getting a secure and comfortable fit is a challenge … Read more
By far the most difficult (read: impossible) question for me to answer is: what is the very best MP3 player/headphone/iPod speaker/etc? That's because there is no single device in any given category that is perfect for every person. There is a healthy handful of MP3 players that I think are excellent, but finding the right device for an individual has a lot to do with personal preference and requirements. I can, however, tell you what I would buy for myself. Also this week: how to judge the best time to buy a new MP3 player.
Q: … Read more
Bose has built quite the reputation for its entire audio line, so it's no surprise that the third version of the company's noise-canceling headphones, the QuietComfort 3, has a following. These earpad-style cans are supercomfortable and offer a sleek design that's significantly trimmed down in size from previous models. However, Bose made no move to lower the luxury pricing of the QuietComfort, which is where the Audio-Technica ATH-ANC7 QuietPoint headphones come in. These full-size 'phones sound good, can be used with or without noise-cancellation turned on, and include a handy hard-shell carrying case--all at half the price … Read more
Turtle Beach has just unveiled its latest surround sound headset for the Xbox 360. The Ear Force X4 offers a wireless connection to the 360 (thanks to a separate base station) and it doubles as an Xbox Live communicator for chatting during multiplayer games (the microphone and headphone-to-controller tether can be removed during solo gameplay). The Ear Force X4 delivers full Dolby Digital and Dolby Pro Logic II surround decoding, and the standard optical digital and analog stereo inputs mean that it can be connected to virtually any other audiovisual source beyond the Xbox 360.
While previous Xbox-centric Ear Force … Read more
Donald and Jasmine announce the winners of the Zune giveaway contest. Also on deck: a Zune accessories roundup, a new Iriver player reviewed, and useful podcast info. Listen now: Download today's podcastEPISODE 103 Zune winners announced!
First prize winner is CalBear AKA Dan
Second prize winner is Sean Honsowetz
Zune accessories: http://reviews.cnet.com/4321-6519_7-6551695.html?tag=feat.2
Consider yourself warned: The following post is not for the squeamish. It's time to clean the wax out of your earbuds. Yes, it's gross, but if you have the style of earbud that gets inserted into the ear canal, it must be done. Otherwise, wax can build up on the outer speaker and affect sound quality, and it may actually seep in and damage the inner workings of the earpieces. It's also not a bad idea to disinfect the sleeves from time to time. Find out how to do both below. Also this week: Your iPod isn'… Read more