iPod Shuffle 4th Generation Review

By   

good

An iPod is the iconic music player, and the iPod shuffle 4th generation is the iPod writ small. Users like its simplicity and the durable, aluminum build, but the shuffle has few extra features and its audio quality is merely average.

Apple didn't invent the MP3 player, but it revolutionized it (and the entire music industry) with the iPod. Variations on the theme have resulted in a line of descendants that includes the 4th generation iPod shuffle whose simplicity and small, small size pull in legions of besotted fans, according to iPod shuffle reviews. Users rave about its ease-of-use, sleek design, and tiny footprint, which iPod shuffle reviews at Walmart proclaim as workout heaven. One consumer who posted comments at Target expressed surprise at how loud the shuffle can get despite its diminutive stature.

It's the earbuds, though, that give both users and experts pause. Some iPod shuffle reviews report they don't stay put and an expert from PC Mag asserts that they mar the audio experience. Sound quality is OK, the expert notes, but is far from beating out other players. The shuffle's voice-over feature, which identifies the track or playlist currently running, is one if its strengths, notes an iPod shuffle review at PC World, and largely compensates for the absence of a screen that would otherwise display this information.

The iPod shuffle (starting at $45, Amazon) is one of the simplest MP3 players you'll find. It has very few features and controls, which makes it a breeze to use, but may leave some users wanting more. This model comes with 2GB of storage and supports many audio formats, including MP3, MP3 VBR, Apple Lossless, AIFF, WAV, and Audible files. The shuffle is made of aluminum, so it's pretty sturdy.

This player is tiny and lightweight, though durable, and should be able to withstand more of a beating than others. Audio quality is average, at best, and some users may struggle to keep track of playlists and songs despite the voice-over function. This is the cheapest iPod available, making it a good choice for Apple devotees who want an iPod without spending big bucks.

Michael Sweet

Michael Sweet writes about consumer electronics. If something runs on electricity or ones and zeroes, he's interested in it. Sweet has written about PC technology and consumer electronics for 14 years.

See full bio