During a trip, it was also fun to add foreign music to our collection, by copying new music onto our computer and from there to the iPod.

Overall Impression We looked high and low for an all-in-one phone, MP3 player, organizer, GPS and could not find one we liked. Instead we decided to throw caution to the wind and splurge for the new 40 GB iPod (before they marked it down) music player. Our first Apple purchase, it was heavier than it looked but oh so classy and practical. We can carry music choices for two or more travelers (up to 10,000 songs) and still have room left over to pick up additional tunes during our trips. Though we battled to figure out the exact measure of the battery charge, overall it seemed to hold its charge for a week or longer and play for hours before needing a recharge.

The iPod was heavily dependent on access to a computer with a high speed Internet connection. Without them our ability to obtain information on new music was hampered and we were unable to purchase new music at the Apple iTunes online store. Without access to our computer, all we had was the iPod as it was. We were unable to easily change configurations, load new music and adjust our playlists. Also, troubleshooting and FAQ (frequently asked questions) could only be accessed online unless you traveled with the User’s Guide. When our computer hard disk failed and had to be replaced we made an annoying discovery when we reloaded the files we had backed up: We had lost all our play lists, which we had spent a couple of hours creating.

We love taking the iPod with us in the car (we purchased the special cables to connect to the car’s audio system), to work out, and when we travel near or far. Plugged in to noise reduction headphones it can make a long flight feel shorter and an airport layover more pleasant. It also provides us access to music we like played in any order we choose instead of the airlines’ limited selections played according to a preprogrammed sequence. When we are away in an exotic location, playing familiar music or an audio book on the iPod could alleviate boredom and help us reconnect with familiar sounds and rhythms. During a trip, it was also fun to add foreign music to our collection, by copying new music onto our computer and from there to the iPod.

Battery An internal non-removable battery requiring three hours to charge fully and one hour to fast charge with an 80 percent capacity. It could be charged by connecting it to a computer’s 6-pin FireWire port or directly to a power outlet. Though it could handle voltages from 110 to 240, when traveling internationally we had to make sure to take an adequate converter plug.

Included iPod, dock, remote, carrying case, earphones, FireWire cable, 6-pin-to-pin FireWire adapter, AC adapter and iTunes music management software.

List Price $499 (now $399)

Made In Designed in California and assembled in China

Manufacturer-Distributor : Apple Computer, Inc.

Mc Requirements Macintosh computer with FireWire port; MacOS X v101.5 or later

Pc Requirements PC with FireWire or USB 2.0 port or FireWire or USB 2.0 card; Windows 2000 with Service Pack 4 or later or Windows XP Home or Professional

Play Time Eight (8) hours

Release Date September 2003

Size 2.4” wide by 4.1” long by .73” thick

Type Of Product Audio player

Warranty One year

Weight : 6.2 ounces

Features Storage for up to 10,000 songs or 40 GB of music. Synchronized music and playlists automatically with Mac or PC. Touch wheel and buttons allowed one-handed navigation It included a 2-inch (diagonal) gray sc ale LCD with LED backlight. Computer connectivity was through FireWire 400 and USB 2.0 through dock connector. Capable of playing MP3, WAV, Audible and AAC formats (Mac and PC). Also played AIFF (Mac only). Skip protection for a maximum of 25 minutes.

Online Music Purchases We purchased music from the Apple iTunes online store with ease. It was marvelous being able to hear a 10 second snippet of the song before buying it. The difficulty was when there was more than one choice of the same song. They all sounded more or less the same during the short play time available and there was no de sc ription or explanation beyond the artist’s name, song title and album.

Once we signed up and identified a song, the purchase was simple and speedy. One minute we had confirmed the order; the next minute the song was in our music library. It was a bit annoying to find out you could only burn each song seven times. When searching for music, we found limited international options though there were plenty of the mainstream chart songs and albums.

Other The iPod 40G offered additional features beyond music playing such as alarm clock, address book (since there was no way to secure the iPod in case it was stolen we preferred not to install any confidential information). It was also possible to store text notes, record voice memos (using an optional microphone), store digital photos (using an optional photo card reader) and play games.

We found the individual song iTunes options excellent when we only wanted to purchase one song from a particular artist. When we want an entire album, we like purchasing the CD’s of our choice and loading our song selections onto the iPod. This means we purchase high quality CD’s (the iPod’s sound quality is lower than that of a regular CD player) that have a long shelf life and are not tied at the hip to our computer. Also, if we purchase music through the Apple iTunes online store, there are restrictions on the number of times we can burn it onto a CD for our own use. Chances are we won’t burn our CD’s. It’s nice to know we can if we want to.

Amount Of Time Tested Eight months

Countries Tested U.S. and France

Date Of Last Review January2005

Service In the U.S. 1-800-275-2273 and “1” toll free in the U.S. or www.apple.com/support

Would You Purchase-Use This Product Again? Yes

Contact Information

  • Address:
    • Apple
    • 1 Infinite Loop
    • Cupertino, CA 95014
  • Phone:
    • 1.408.996.1010
    • 1-800-MY APPLE
  • Website: