Neil Turner's Blog

Blogging about technology and randomness since 2002

Don’t look now, but…

…I’m seriously considering buying an iPod Mini. My student discount brings the price down to a very reasonable £165 (an 8% reduction), and it’s £65 cheaper than the 15GB iPod which is £230 (again with a discount).

My current player, a 128MB memory stick made by a random Korean manufacturer, appears to be on its last legs so I’d like something to replace it. That cost me £130 last year and when you consider that the Mini has 16 times the capacity and far superior build quality for £165 it’s probably worth it.

What I do want to know is if there’s anything else out there that would offer better value. I don’t have that much music so around 4GB is enough for me (I only have 5GB in total). Argos have this Thomson player which supports MP3, WMA and mp3PRO (who uses that?) for £200 – it’s got a 20GB HD and is about the same size as the normal iPod. There were also some Archos players that were good value but they look to be quite big – coming from a Flash player I’d like something small.

By the way, if you are considering an iPod Mini, Amazon are taking pre-orders for £175, saving you £5. They’re due out officially on July 24th.


  1. Alternatively, you could look at the iRiver – 40 gigs and more features than you could comfortably shake a stick at (Ogg Vorbis support, optical in/out, FM radio, voice recording, data support, yadda, yadda), and considerably less than the equivalent iPod…

  2. For that money you could buy a reasonable acoustic guitar – truly portable and capable of playing as much music as you can store in your brain and fingertips. Absolutely fantastic sound quality too, it’s almost as if the instrument were in the same room with you.

  3. An acoustic guitar? What?
    When the iRiver came out it was hot stuff. Now you don’t hear about it. Ogg support isn’t all that and a bag of chips.
    I now own 2 iPods (one was free) and I love it. I finally got to hold an iPod mini in my had and oooooh its nice!
    Get the mini Neil!

  4. The iRiver looks good but is well beyond my budget. And a guitar would be too large and bulky and require talent 🙂
    I’ll consider ordering it next week.

  5. I have had an iRiver (the toblerone shaped one) and an mp3 player by Creative – both were a bit disappointing. I had all manner of problems with the firmware in the iRiver (refuses to play mp3pro for example), and it regularly froze on me needing a restart. The Creative device had great software, but the sound quality was poor – no bass and not enough volume for buses/gyms etc.
    Get an iPod mini.

  6. The Rio Karma got very good reviews in the latest issue of PC Pro (rated 6 out of 6, compared with 5 out of 6 for the iPod).
    Check out
    It’s selling for