'Which iPod Are You?' (Good Question)
Trying to Choose which New iPod is Best is Like Throwing
Goldilocks and the Three Bears into the Land of Oz (What?)


by Joe Leo, Columnist



WILL THE REAL iPod PLEASE STAND UP?: They're all black--at least, these ones are--slim, sleek, and of course, iPods. What model/version to get? The classic? Na... The touch? No... [PHOTO: 2007, J. Leo]



COMMENTARY: (10.10.07)-- Apple's ads for their newly revamped iPod line asks, "Which iPod Are You?" Which begs yet another: good question. Some base it on funds, some on wants vs. needs, others on aesthetics, while some just can't decide and would buy all three if they could. If you asked this columnist what he did? Check the box for... all of the above!

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When Steve Jobs unveiled Apple's new iPod line earlier last month, the reviews started coming in. (Or was that, the drools started dripping in?). It was like a modern day "Goldilocks and the Three Bears" story. This iPod's too small and a bit inflated at the waistline. This one's too classic looking and needs to be retired. This iPhone-like device has got just the right touch.

Like our own Noah Kravitz, reviews editor for PBCentral.com, said--as well as many others who initially reviewed the same device--it's true that the pictures of the new iPod nano don't really do it much justice. Although it is the smallest iPod-to-date, it looked a little pudgy at the seams. Actually having it in your hands changes the perspective on the cute little device.

The screen is really sharp, but other than that? It seemed its smallness was a bit overdone, and it looked kind of cheap. Price-wise, it was, compared to its siblings. As hot an item as it was (can you hear Goldilocks saying "this one's too hot"?), it just wasn't enough to whet the appetite of this columnist's stomach. Next!

Never a big fan of the regular sized iPods, but almost bought the iPod "with video" knowing better to wait for the "real" one (it was bought for a sibling as a college graduation present--if they're reading this, they're learning for the very first time--but instead bought them a MacBook and for days, pondered keeping the iPod "with video" instead of returning it)...

...two years later, the real one debuts in the form of the newest model, the iPod touch.

The regular sized iPod now has a name: the iPod classic. And a classic it is, but with its semi-new form factor, it looked a little more pleasing to the eye, especially with the materials used to make it. Aluminum, and now in silver too. But something about the classic made it seem cold--maybe the metal it's made out of?--so the Goldilocks factor sets in again.

Immediately upon touching the, uh, touch, it wasn't special in that we've all seen this before: on the iPhone. But those of us who like to play by the rules and don't want to buy bricks from our brick-and-mortar Apple Store (that's what Home Depot or Lowe's is for), this was the way to go.

The yellow brick road. Wait, wrong story here. Or not?

After test driving all three new iPods at the Apple Store, and doing the Goldilocks test on them, this columnist chose the 16GB iPod touch to take home. It's what came to heart (fell in love with), it was a no brainer (literally gave in without thinking first), and it took courage (pulling out the plastic [credit cards]) to take this new friend back home (to Kansas).

This all started, believe it or not, three weeks ago. What's transpired since then? Well...

The 16GB touch from Apple was never opened; later on, the 8GB nano and after that, the 80GB classic, were purchased at another electronics retailer; the 16GB touch was exchanged for an 8GB model back at Apple (which remained unopened and was again returned); and just this weekend, yet another 8GB touch, purchased at a different electronics chain.

After various days of hands-on testing, touching, and comparing the new nano, classic, and touch--both in-store and the ones in this columnist's possession--what's the verdict? Good question... "Which iPod Are You?" Come back later, for the full in-depth review.

(Now we know what predicament Goldilocks went through. Wonder which iPod she would have chosen? And Dorothy's quest to get back home? It'll pale in comparison with getting these iPods back to their homes before the 30-day return policy is up... so hard to let go! Plus, we'll need a lion's courage to explain why they're being returned! "Uh, hi. My brains weren't exactly in the...").



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