Feeds
80%

Apple iPod Shuffle 2G

Life's still random, just smaller...

  • alert
  • submit to reddit

Internet Security Threat Report 2014

The Shuffle's fractionally wider than the Nano and about the same depth, though its built-in belt clip doubles the effective depth. It's made of the same aluminium as the Nano. With the player's controls facing you, the earphone socket is on top, alongside a green status LED, while the power switch and the repeat play/shuffle switch are on the base - next to a second green LED. Like the first-generation Shuffle, the new model has no hold switch. Instead, you press and hold Play for three seconds.

Having two separate switches is a big improvement over the old Shuffle's single, three-way slider switch. My Shuffle is almost always used for sequential playback, but it was a little to easy to push the slider too far and accidentally start shuffling. The new Shuffle's switches are raised above the casing not flush with it as was the case with the old shuffle. Again, this is a real improvement.

apple's second-generation ipod shuffle

Another refinement: the belt clip. This will snap onto clothing flaps and pockets, bags and other kit with ease, making the Shuffle feel like little more than a remote control unit for a larger iPod. The clip's neither too stiff nor too loose - just right, in fact.

Which pretty much covers its functionality too: play or pause, volume up or down, track skip and play mode. Once again, less is more, just let the music come to you, in order or at random.

iTunes provides access to the player's settings, in particular the maximum volume setting and allowing the Shuffle to be used as a USB Flash drive, though the dock requirement limits its usefulness in this role. Once again, you can opt to auto-convert transferred songs to 128Kbps AACs, to get more into the 1GB memory.

The new Shuffle supports all the usual music formats, though unlike the other iPods it doesn't like Apple Lossless files. That's not a size issue - it'll happily work with uncompressed AIFFs - but presumably the Shuffle lacks the processing power to decode them.

There's only one size available - 1GB - and one colour - silver. So what, it's still a great gadget and a worthy successor to the original Shuffle. The lithium-ion polymer battery takes up the bulk of the Shuffle's interior space to deliver around 12 hours' playback time, which isn't at all bad for a device like this.

apple's second-generation ipod shuffle

By that I mean a player for the more casual listener or as a handy grab-and-go unit for someone who already owns a high-capacity iPod. The capacity favours using the Shuffle for listening to a handful of new albums or holding a heap of favourite tracks. Either way, you're not too bothered about choosing what you're going to listen to. If you want that, buy a Nano or a video iPod.

Verdict

The iPod Shuffle evolves. The simplicity of the original is augmented with an even smaller case that feels like the remote control of a larger player. It's let down only by the need for a dock - and a unique dock at that. The Shuffle's not for everyone - plenty of people will prefer to select their songs on a screen - but it remains a great grab-and-go gadget for music on the move.

Providing a secure and efficient Helpdesk

80%

Apple iPod Shuffle 2G

The shrunk 2G Shuffle's a big improvement on the first one...
Price: $79/£55/€89 RRP

More from The Register

next story
Will.i.am gets CUFFED as he announces his new wristjob, the PULS
It's got four KILOWATTS of something, apparently
Don't wait for that big iPad, order a NEXUS 9 instead, industry little bird says
Google said to debut next big slab, Android L ahead of Apple event
Netscape Navigator - the browser that started it all - turns 20
It was 20 years ago today, Marc Andreeesen taught the band to play
A drone of one's own: Reg buyers' guide for UAV fanciers
Hardware: Check. Software: Huh? Licence: Licence...?
Apple SILENCES Bose, YANKS headphones from stores
The, er, Beats go on after noise-cancelling spat
Jaguar Sportbrake: The chicken tikka masala of van-sized posh cars
Indian-owned Jag's latest offering curries favour with us
The Apple launch AS IT HAPPENED: Totally SERIOUS coverage, not for haters
Fandroids, Windows Phone fringe-oids – you wouldn't understand
Here's your chance to buy an ancient, working APPLE ONE
Warning: Likely to cost a lot even for a Mac
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.
Win a year’s supply of chocolate
There is no techie angle to this competition so we're not going to pretend there is, but everyone loves chocolate so who cares.
Why cloud backup?
Combining the latest advancements in disk-based backup with secure, integrated, cloud technologies offer organizations fast and assured recovery of their critical enterprise data.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?
Saudi Petroleum chooses Tegile storage solution
A storage solution that addresses company growth and performance for business-critical applications of caseware archive and search along with other key operational systems.