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iPods & MP3 players Reviews
15,670 Reviews PC Advisor Gold Award

Apple iPod classic 2G review

£179 inc VAT

Manufacturer: Apple

Our Rating: We rate this 4 out of 5 User Rating: Our users rate this 5 out of 10

Lacking the wide-screen wonder and connectivity of the iPod touch and the 4G iPod nano's gee-whiz accelerometer and shake-to-shuffle feature, the iPod classic doesn't feel new or innovative. Rather, it's a tested and reliable way to carry around your digital media.

Lacking the wide-screen wonder and connectivity of the iPod touch and the 4G iPod nano's gee-whiz accelerometer and shake-to-shuffle feature, the iPod classic doesn't feel new or innovative. Rather, it's a tested and reliable way to carry around your digital media.

Something new
I said nearly, not completely. The new features it does include are also found on the new iPod nano and are just as worthwhile. First, the iPod classic supports the Genius playlist feature. Select a song you want to build a related playlist around, press and hold the Centre button, and a screen appears that offers these choices: Start Genius, Add to On-The-Go, Browse Album, Browse Artist, and Cancel. Choose Start Genius, press the Centre button and the iPod creates a playlist of 25 related tracks.

You can save the Genius playlist by selecting Save Playlist and a new playlist is created with the name of the selected track. To populate the playlist with other tracks related to your originally selected track, select the Refresh command in the Genius playlist screen and press the Centre button.

The Add to On-The-Go command indicates how On-The-Go playlist creation has changed on the latest iPod classic. Select the item you want to add to the On-The-Go playlist and press and hold the Centre button. In the resulting screen, select that Add to On-The-Go command, and press Centre again.

I admit that I miss the old behaviour when all I had to do was select an item and press and hold Centre until that item flashed, telling me that it had been added to the On-The-Go playlist. Under the old system I had one less screen and command to futz with.

But it's nice to see the addition of the Browse Album and Browse Artist commands on this screen. Just as with these commands on the 4G iPod nano, they make it easy for those shuffling through their music collection to quickly move to the album or artist from which the currently playing track comes. I've longed for this feature during those "I love this song, I wish I could listen to the rest of the album in the press of a button!" moments.

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Apple iPod classic 2G Expert Verdict »

2.5in (diagonal) colour LCD with LED backlight, 320-by-240-pixel resolution at 163 pixels per inch
3.5-mm stereo headphone jack
USB 2.0 cable
dock adaptor
Quick Start guide
Audio formats supported: AAC (16 to 320 Kbps), Protected AAC (from iTunes Store), MP3 (16 to 320 Kbps), MP3 VBR, Audible (formats 2, 3 and 4), Apple Lossless, AIFF and WAV
120GB hard drive
  • Build Quality: We give this item 8 of 10 for build quality
  • Features: We give this item 7 of 10 for features
  • Value for Money: We give this item 8 of 10 for value for money
  • Overall: We give this item 8 of 10 overall

Apple has done very little to improve the iPod classic with this iteration - that's not necessarily a bad thing. It remains the iPod to own if you want to carry a lot of media with you. The Genius feature is a nice addition as is the ability to quickly browse albums and artists based on the currently playing track, but those additions will convince very few people to trade in their old reliable (and perhaps, higher-capacity) iPod classic for this year's model. It doesn't include such cool new iPod nano features as accelerometer or spoken menus, and those with large media libraries may mourn the loss of the 160GB classic. That said, it offers lots of storage capacity, impressive battery performance, the Genius playlist support, browse album and artist features, a slightly brighter display, and it even charges with a FireWire connection, as well as USB.

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