Dress up your iPOD

Want to get more out of your iconic music player? Get these accessories.

Kushan Mitra & Bibek Bhattacharya        Print Edition: Nov 4, 2007

Want to get more out of your iconic music player? Get these accessories.  

It has been almost a decade since Steve Jobs revolutionised the Digital Audio Player (DAP) scene when Apple created the iPod. Today, while there are tens of great DAPs out there from Sony, Microsoft and Creative, among others, at the end of the day you know this is a segment of one, where the iPod rules.

But the iPod’s genius does not just lie in the simplicity of its design and the user interface. Beyond that, the iPod has created a huge market for accessories—docking stations to listen to the iPod without earphones or to fill up a room with sound, systems to monitor your jogging speed and many other tricks. So, what are the essential iPod accessories?

A Dock
A sound-dock is a great idea because it allows you to listen to your iPod without ripping out your eardrums. But which sound-dock should you buy? We suggest the relatively inexpensive (at $130 or Rs 5,200) Griffin iAmplifi, which has good sound reproduction. It may not be the best dock available—that honour will probably go to the Altec Lansing IMV712 that features an 8.5-inch LCD screen to play back videos you store on your iPod, but it costs $350 (Rs 14,000). It is a decision that you have to make.

And if you just want something strange, you can get the iCarta, an iPod dock with a toilet-roll holder. Just for those people who love their iPod’s too much to leave them behind. The iCarta is available for $99 (Rs 3,960), though, you must be warned that audio quality is pretty, well, crappy! No surprises there.

A Cover
If you want your case to look different, take a look at products from accessory company iFrogz, which makes some cool custom cases for different types of iPods—cases for the iPod Classic start at $25 (Rs 1,000) and those for the Nano at $20 (Rs 800) and the website delivers to India, though you will pay a bomb in postage. If, however, you want a classic leather case, you can get everything from badly stitched unbranded ones for Rs 600 to leather cases such as the one sold by Apple that costs $99 (Rs 3,960). There are other cases, some with a cover that allow to view your iPod while it is in its case, available for upwards of Rs 2,500.

Radio Transmitters
In India, systems are available from manufacturers such as Blaupunkt that are iPod-compatible, but only the Honda Civic 1.8V has an iPod connector. So, the only way to enjoy an iPod in your car is to get a radio transmitter for your iPod. These convert the output from the iPod into an FM signal and broadcast it on a free FM frequency on your car audio system. Griffin’s iTrip is the most popular FM transmitter for the iPod and costs $50 (Rs 2,000); it is available on the grey market for Rs 3,000.

 And something different

We suggest the Nike+iPod kit. You need to have the following: a pair of Nike+ shoes (Rs 3,000-plus), an iPod Nano (Rs 8,000-plus) and the Nike+iPod kit ($29 or Rs 1,160).

How does this toy work? Slot the transmitter under your insole and plug in a small receiver into your iPod—to monitor how far you’ve jogged, how many calories you’ve burned and so on and so forth.

Monster iTV link for iPod
Here’s an easy way to play all the movies, videos and photos stored on your iPod. The iTV link connects the iPod to the TV, delivering high quality video and audio. Monster iTV Link features a dock connector for the iPod and S-video and stereo audio outputs that connects easily with a TV. Monster’s advanced S-video connection delivers a brighter, more colourful and detailed picture. The link features a built-in mini USB charging port to enable connection of a mini-USB cable (not included) to simultaneously charge the iPod.
Price: $59.95 (Rs 2,398)

Radio Remote
This is a cool new feature on the iPod that allows you to listen to FM radio. It comes with a pair of earphones, a wired remote and a convenient shorter cable to fit into the remote. This works with any iPod except the iPod Shuffle.
Price: $49 (Rs 1,960)

iHome iH6 Dual-Alarm Clock Radio
Here’s some iPod technology that can wake you up as well as lull you to sleep. The IH6 stereo system includes a full-function remote control that can interface both with the iPod and the radio. The sound comes through Reson8 speaker chambers. But it doesn’t stop there. The iH6 also charges the iPod with a dock connector. The radio has 12 pre-set stations and an external AM antenna. The alarm clock has seven pre-set time zones.
Price: $99.95 (Rs 3,998)

i-P23 Portable Speakers
This is called the Roxy edition after the wrapping style. It includes aluminium cone neodymium drivers for clarity, ported speaker housings, and advanced Maxxbass technology that provides an enhanced bass response while minimising distortion. The case also serves as a speaker cabinet, producing better audio output.
Price: $119.95 (Rs 4,798)

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