Tech News on G4
A Few iPod Companion Gifts
December 11, 2007
By Greg Gazin - Apple Gaziní - G4 Canada
A great way to make your Christmas shopping go a long way is to find gift items that will compliment one’s they already have or will be getting under the tree this year. And since the iPod is a definite hit, here are just a few gift ideas to help you in the gift selection to help maximize that iPod experience.
The iPod does ship with Apple’s signature earbuds, but why not give a gift of the ultimate listening experience with Creative’s Aurvana X-Fi, noise-canceling headphones. This baby will filter out up to 90% of the ambient noise allowing you to enjoy every note of your tunes instead of the noise outside. Its X-Fi technology smartly and electronics boosts the highs and lows, bringing out a sharpness to even highly compressed MP3s. The CMSS-3D effect simulates surround sound, handy with some of today’s movies. Each of these features can be turned on and off or used in combination. Engage the noise cancellation feature and even if the iPod is off, use these headphones, on the plane, at a noisy shopping mall, or at times where and when you want to enjoy a little peace and quiet and just tune out the world. It ships with a carry case and a whole slew of adapters, so you can hook it up to your computer, stereo, iPod and even that double-socket connector they still use on Air Canada. They list in Canada for $349, ($299 in the US).
Wristwatch Doubles as Remote
Many people wear their iPods on their hip, on their arm or stuff them in their pockets, making it a royal pain to easily change the songs. Here’s a great gift idea that will not only gives you a remote control for any dockable iPod, the new TIMEX IRONMAN iControl is also a full-featured wristwatch.
It looks like an unassuming watch, but when you look closely, not only will you see date in time, but icons for Pause/Play, Forward/Back and Volume. It ships with a tiny receiver that attaches to your iPod allowing you to control your tunes without fumbling for your iPod’s click-wheel.
No major configuration or software installation is required. The wireless receiver is powered by your iPod and syncs seamlessly to it. Simply plug the receiver into your dock connector, make sure the watch is in “time” mode and hit play. A little iPod icon will display on the watch, indicating the connection.
Just Dock Me
Has the old clock radio has seen better days, why not try the $119 iHOME iH8BR Dual Alarm Clock Radio for iPod? Just drop the iPod in the dock and they can wake up to their musical favourites. It doubles as a charger so your iPod can re-juice while your loved-ones sleep. When they’re awake they can give up the earphones and listen to their tunes through the built-in stereo speakers, controlled by the supplied remote control. You can get it any colour your want as long as you desire black or white. Works with 4th generation iPod and later.
Universal Dock Connector
Speaking of “dockless”, because of its size, a dock is just one of the features that the iPod Shuffle just doesn’t have. In some cases, you can use the headphone jack, but if the gadget requires an Apple compatible 30-pin dock connector, like some of the car chargers, FM-Transmitters and speaker systems that require it, shufflers have been more or less out of luck.
To alleviate this problem, a nice little stocking stuffer for the 2nd or 3rd generation iPod Shuffle, is the U-Connect from Fastmac (US$17.95). This new gadget is an adapter that features the 30-pin standard dock connector on one end and the headphone plug/connector on the other. A toggle switch on the back switches the U-Connect between charging and playback mode. Like the iHome unit, this little guy is available in black or white.
And last but not least, here is a must have for every iPod ( that supports video) that resides in the “Great White North” and north of the 49th Parallel. It’s the iYule – a high-tech fireplace you can take on the road.
You can enjoy a full half-hour by a virtual crackling fire complimented by an original music score. You have the option of buying it in standard or widescreen, a music-free edition, a TV or computer version of just get the complete album. Prices range from $5-$10, cheaper and cleaner than logs. And if you like to watch the fireplace channel – like I do every year, this is certainly an alternative and you can watch it all year round. Plus, portions of the profits from iYule will go to charity.
We all live crazy, busy and hectic lives, so why not bundle the iYule log video with Aurvana headphones and give a gift of Synchronicity. I’m confident it will be greatly appreciated.
All the best to you and your families for this holiday season from the Apple Gazin’ Guy.
Greg Gazin can be reached at gadgetguy “at” telus “dot” net.
About G4 in Canada
G4 launched on September 7, 2001 as the ultimate television resource for technology news, information and entertainment. Co-owned by G4, Rogers Media Inc. and Shaw Communications Inc., G4 is Canada's first television channel 100% dedicated to technology, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. The channel features the latest technology news, information and entertainment in an exciting and high-energy format. G4 is available on digital cable and satellite.