Feeds
60%

Griffin TuneBuds iPod lanyard-earphone combo

Dangle your Nano

Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops

Review Apple's lightweight iPod Nano would be ideal for dangling around your neck had Apple bothered to bundle a lanyard with the player as it did with the screen-less iPod Shuffle. It will sell you one, of course, neatly fitted to a pair of standard white iPod earphones, but that's not much use if you want something in black, or you fancy a set of in-the-ear 'phones...

Griffin's TuneBuds provide both. The product combines a woven cloth lanyard - not smooth plastic, like Apple's - that fits to the Nano's 3.5mm earphone jack and, for extra strength, the player's dock connector. At the other end of the necklace is a small plastic bead out of which spring the two earphones. Simple.

griffin tubebuds for ipod nano

The 'phones are a pair of Griffin's own EarThumps and likewise ship with three pairs of soft rubber sheathes which not only hold each earpiece snuggly inside the ear canal but also help to block out sounds from the world around you. The bungs come in different sizes but you don't get the array of different types and materials you do with 'phones from specialist suppliers like Shure.

I've reviewed the EarThumps before and this time round I again found they deliver decent sound isolation and good sound quality. They're not the best of their kind, lacking the clarity and vivacity of the Shure E3g set I tried a little while back, but then they're a fraction of the price. I certainly found them entirely adequate for use on London's buses and underground trains.

I expected to have trouble with the iPod connection, but it proved tight enough to hold the music player upside down securely. If anything, it's a little difficult to get off, but better that than running the risk of dropping the Nano onto the ground. If, like me, your earphones are kept permanently plugged into your player, keeping the TuneBuds attached won't matter in any case.

I didn't like a couple of things about the TuneBuds, however. First, unlike the EarThumps, there's no case to keep the TuneBuds in. I reserve in-the-ear 'phones for particularly noisy environments like aircraft cabins, so it's handy to keep the earphones tucked away safely in a case, even a basic one like the case that ships with the (less expensive) EarThumps.

More of a problem for me, though, was the length of the lanyard and cables. Apple's set is adjustable, though the longer your earphone cables, the shorter the necklace. The TuneBuds provide no such room for adjustment, and I found the standard lengths a little too short. The lanyard's the right length when you're wearing it, but it continually snagged on ears and/or chin when I put it on or took it off. The 'phone cables aren't so bad, but jacket collars tend to limit their freedom of movement.

griffin tubebuds for ipod nano

Griffin's own EarThumps retail in the US for a mere $20 - a snip, I'd say. The addition of the lanyard and iPod connector adds a further $15, which seems a little too much to me for benefit of being able to deck the player around your neck, particularly given the limitations I've just mentioned.

Verdict

Like Griffin's EarThumps in-the-ear 'phones, the TuneBuds offer good sound isolation and audio quality for the price. It's good to have a lanyard for your iPod Nano too, but Griffin has missed a trick by giving you no way to adjust the cable lenghs. I'll stick with my EarThumps, thanks. ®

Providing a secure and efficient Helpdesk

60%

Griffin TuneBuds iPod lanyard-earphone combo

Nice idea, but the cables are too short and the price too high...
Price: $35/£30 inc. VAT RRP

More from The Register

next story
TEEN RAMPAGE: Kids in iPhone 6 'Will it bend' YouTube 'prank'
iPhones bent in Norwich? As if the place wasn't weird enough
George Clooney, WikiLeaks' lawyer wife hand out burner phones to wedding guests
Day 4: 'News'-papers STILL rammed with Clooney nuptials
iPAD-FONDLING fanboi sparks SECURITY ALERT at Sydney airport
Breaches screening rules cos Apple SCREEN ROOLZ, ok?
Crouching tiger, FAST ASLEEP dragon: Smugglers can't shift iPhone 6s
China's grey market reports 'sluggish' sales of Apple mobe
Apple's new iPhone 6 vulnerable to last year's TouchID fingerprint hack
But unsophisticated thieves need not attempt this trick
The British Museum plonks digital bricks on world of Minecraft
Institution confirms it's cool with joining the blocky universe
How the FLAC do I tell MP3s from lossless audio?
Can you hear the difference? Can anyone?
prev story

Whitepapers

Forging a new future with identity relationship management
Learn about ForgeRock's next generation IRM platform and how it is designed to empower CEOS's and enterprises to engage with consumers.
Storage capacity and performance optimization at Mizuno USA
Mizuno USA turn to Tegile storage technology to solve both their SAN and backup issues.
The next step in data security
With recent increased privacy concerns and computers becoming more powerful, the chance of hackers being able to crack smaller-sized RSA keys increases.
Security for virtualized datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.
A strategic approach to identity relationship management
ForgeRock commissioned Forrester to evaluate companies’ IAM practices and requirements when it comes to customer-facing scenarios versus employee-facing ones.