Saturday, September 25, 2004

Trouble brewing over at "free ipods dot com"

I commented on this free iPod scheme before here, go read that first.

Essentially the FreeiPods.com site will send you a free iPod if you sign up for a promotion such as a credit card or a trial period of receiving the New York Times and then get a bunch of your friends to do the same.

At first people questioned whether it was a scam, but after an article in WIRED about the site it really blew up and there were enough testimonials by people who actually got a free iPod to convince lots of others to get in on the action.

According to this new WIRED article, more recently there have been complaints.
However, Wired News has been inundated with complaints about spam, mishandled accounts and shipping delays.

Earlier this month, Jim Youll, a 39-year-old CTO from Cambridge, Massachusetts, signed up with a virgin e-mail address and within hours started receiving spam.
...
"I am still getting spammed and so are the people who signed up for me," he said. "They stay true to their word that they will get you out a product, but their customer service is miserable."
...
There are several records of complaints against Gratis Internet and its affiliate websites with the Better Business Bureau of Washington, D.C., but they are all listed as resolved.

A spokeswoman said the bureau has received about 30 complaints about the company, but was unable to elaborate. She said to her knowledge, all the complaints had been addressed.


Of course the company denies all the charges:
"We are suspending all marketing via email to our customers, and wanted to make sure you knew this was an important and sensitive issue for us," Martin wrote in an e-mail. "Sending promotions to users is a fairly standard practice for many industries, as an additional source of revenue, but we definitely want to continue to spread a positive and trustworthy image of our company down the road."

They say they've had trouble getting the iPods out due to problems with Apple. Personally, I recommend biting the bullet and buying your MP3 player. But don't waste your money on an iPod, go with the superior and cheaper Dell DJ.

55 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Exactly how is that POS Dell DJ superior? Have you used both players? I have. The only thing superior about the Dell is the shorter waiting time to get your hands on one. The iPod is certianly worth the few bucks more in all facets of it's use, especially the way it works with iTunes and the iTunes music store. HP and Apple are selling over a million iPods a month. Dell wishes it could sell a million DJ's period.

9/26/2004 11:15 AM  
Blogger CRC said...

Yes, I own both the iPod and the Dell DJ (which I purchased because I hated the iPod so much).

The whining continues unabated anytime someone even thinks out loud that the iPod may not be sent from the heavens. Just admit it, you paid at least $100 extra for an inferior product (all you have to do is look at teh tech specs to see that).

It's alright, who can blame you, after all you've been caught up in the giant Apple ad campaign (which is, of course, why the iPod actually costs so much). Your iPod's battery dies long before my Dell DJ's, also I have the Dude Box program interface for my DJ, which kicks crappy iTune ass any day of the century.

Look you Apple freaks, get over it. Your precious iPod will not be the top MP3 player forever. I'm not saying that it'll be replaced by the DJ, but it will be replaced by something new. And then what? You gonna keep whining about the good 'ol days? Get over it already, you've been sucked in by trend and marketing. Why do you have brand loyalty? "Because the product is so..." Shut up fool, you never even tried the others, you're brainwashed.

And I don't want to hear any crap from a kid who never even had a Dell DJ, much less used one regularly.

Hey, if I had wasted $300 or $400 on an iPod I'd have trouble admitting it wasn't a great purchase too, I understand. Luckily mine was a gift, so I don't live in la-la-land.

Here's some other links for you to go post more whiney comments on, like some of your brainwashed Apple freak buddies:

iPod vs. Dell DJ, etc.BBC article says iPod crappyproblems with the iPod mini, etc.Apple iPod vs. Dell DJ 1save-ipod-dot-com

9/26/2004 12:37 PM  
Blogger CRC said...

Here are those links again for my anonymous friend (who are you scarey people?):

-------

iPod vs. Dell DJ, etc.-------

BBC article says iPod crappy-------

problems with the iPod mini, etc.--------

Apple iPod vs. Dell DJ 1--------

save-ipod-dot-com---------

9/26/2004 12:40 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Chris Rush Cohen chill out! I know "Apple freaks" are passionate about their iPods, but you were asking for trouble when you post a comment claiming the Dell DJ is better than the iPod without any backup.

While many of the specs may be better, you can't deny the design of the iPod has so much more class. It's the coolness factor. By all means get a Dell DJ, but sometimes there's more to electronics than specs. Apple is the only company that gets it, for those who care.

Obviously you don't. But thats OK. I'm sure you'll be fine with your Dell DJ. Hope you got big pockets and good eyesight though!

Cheers,
Rob.

9/26/2004 1:32 PM  
Blogger CRC said...

Damn you McGowan. I had a feeling that comment was by someone I knew.

I'm just having fun man. Seriously though, check out the comments on some of those other posts on the iPod I've done. People get so excited and profane about them at times that I have to erase their comments for the sake of decency.

And anyway, I think I'm right. The iPod won't stay cool when everyone and their moms are sporting them. You can pay $200 extra to be stylin'. But when you run out of batteries, I'll still be jammin'.

9/26/2004 1:41 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

No not Macgowan.

Anyway, your going to get a lot of freaks since MacSurfer linked to you. Get ready for lots of freaky fun!

Man that iPod sucks. Such a POS.

Cheers,
Rob.

9/26/2004 2:11 PM  
Blogger CRC said...

Not a McGowan eh? With that little "cheers" I was sure you were my British friend. Oh well.

Bring on all your freakyness MacSurfers. I can take it. In the end, I'll still be right and you'll all still be poorer and have inferior technology.

9/26/2004 3:12 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

If Apple would compromise on their iPod design and make it as big as the Dell DJ and have the battery life of the Dell. But why do that? When at home I have it in the iPod dock which is hooked up to my home stereo and it is powered by the AC adaptor. While in the car it is hooked up to my Alpine KCA-420i stereo. Which not only feeds the sound perfectly into my car but also feeds the iPod power. When I want to use it like a little boom box I have it connected to my Altec Lansing inMotion Portable Speakers again supplying power to the iPod. Which brings up another advantage of the iPod. All the really cool third party add ons. At this time I see no other mp3 players with such a large array of third party extras. But getting back to the battery life. The only time I really task the iPod battery is when I am at the gym of out cycling. As athletic as I like to think I am. I do not see my going to the Gym or be out cycling over the time it takes to discharge. So why have more battery life? So I prefer to have a sleeker design to having more battery life that I am not going to use.

Also because I have Mac OS X installed on my iPod I can boot my Mac off it or any of my customers Mac off it. So I can diagnose, trouble shoot and repair HD of file issues. Or I can re-image the Mac by mounting our server and running a restore application. Thanks to being booted off the iPod the Mac's internal HD can be reimaged with my 8 gig image in less that 20 minutes. I would not be able to do any of this on another mp3 player. It is just another big reason I am using the iPod. And I admit that it is a Mac only advantage. But that is another great advantage the Macs have over a Dull er Dell computer :-)

As for the iPod being toppled as the number one mp3 player. Only time will tell on that one. I for one do not think it is a certainty. I think as long as Apple has such a lead on design, user interface, the coolness factor and such great third party product support. I do not see a threat in the near future.

Bill Maxwell

9/26/2004 3:45 PM  
Blogger CRC said...

1. The difference in the size of the two devices is minimal, it's a matter of about a millimeter or so in width and depth. Not a difference worth hundreds of dollars, to me anyway.

I believe that even if they were the same size you'd still argue that the iPod is worth more because it is "sleeker," this is just a justification for the style argument that attempts to minimize the battery power problem by explaining it away - "the iPod couldn't look as cool if it worked better" - is what you're saying. If your MP3 player is a fashion accessory for you then that's cool. I just use mine to listen to music though and I typically judge my technology by it's specs, with looks being important but somewhat secondary. What good is a device if it looks great but sucks? Besides all that, the DJ isn't so bad looking anyway.

2. You say the battery time in the iPod isn't a problem for YOU, but we all know that it has been a big issue for lots of people.

3. There are lots of 3rd party add ons for the iPod, that's certainly true. It's been around for a long time and is the best selling MP3 player at the moment so it is no surprise. Whatever MP3 player is the next big hit will also have lots of add ons for it.

4. Almost no one on planet Earth owns a Mac except the users of MacSurfer so that doesn't really help the rest of us with our "Dull" computers. I don't even want to get into that.

I'm glad you have such ease of trouble shooting with your Macs, etc. because with the iPod I bet you are doing it all the time.

5. The iPod will be unseated as the major MP3 player within a few years. It's just the business cycle. Nothing can stay cool forever. Apple may maintain a large market share well into the future, but they will not retain the practical monopoly they have now. People will eventually figure it out, they're paying way too much extra for that "coolness factor" as you put it.

Your extra hundred bucks went into TV ads to enhance that "coolness factor." But in the end, to me anyway, it's the technology that matters and I would say that after having used both these devices the Dell DJ is better. Not only that, the basic specs and price back me up in an objective manner. Another thing, if only you could use such a great interface for the iPod

9/26/2004 6:08 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Sure the size difference is not much. I happen to use the 20 gig iPod because it is slightly smaller than the 40 gig iPod. So for me a millimeter or 2 is important for me. For others it may not be. But for me I still do not see why having more battery life is needed. There are times I use my iPod for about 4 hours and according to the power meter of the iPod I have not discharged it more than 50 percent. Maybe you want a device that needs 12 hours of battery life. Perhaps this is due to the fact that most of the time I have my iPod attached to a device that can power it. Which is why the third party products is a real advantage to the iPod. This is probably why the battery life is not an issue for ME.

Well I do not think I am saying "the iPod couldn't look as cool if it worked better". More like I am saying that I have never had the battery fully discharge on my iPod. So why do I need more battery life? For me the looks are also secondary. I was only stating the coolness factor as a factor of how popular the device has become. Like you I am all about function. It is just a nice bonus that not only does the iPod function better than any mp3 player out there but it also looks really cool.

What third party products are there for the Dell DJ. Can you do all the things I have listed?

You are correct that I will still prefer the iPod over the Dell DJ if they were the same size. I can have the iPod on my hip in the gym and move to the next song and adjust the volume with out looking at the device. I'll admit that may have come from having the iPod interface as second nature to me. So you may be able to do the same thing with the Dell DJ. Also if they were the same size, you would then have the same battery life in both devices. That and the 100 dollars price difference is the only advantages that you have mentioned.

I looked at your past comments on the iPod. It seems like you got a dud iPod. I deal with literally hundreds of iPod users both PC and Mac and the problems you are stating (battery life etc.) have only appeared on a few duds. I am sure you will agree with that a few duds is normal for mass produced product of any type. I have had duds on some very expensive and reputable brand names. I do not see Apple as being any worse. I have even seen dud Dell's yet I do not label the entire Dell line based on a few duds.

You are right that we should not get into the Mac vs PC thing. I was only trying to highlight the other than mp3 functions that I use my iPod for. Needless to say that where I work Mac issues occur far less than PC issues. Maybe it is because of the fact that the Mac has zero malware and does not force its users to run as administrators or "root" 24/7 (a major security violation in anyone's book) and does not have a single point of failure like the Windows registry. But let's not go there like you said.

Another great function the iPod has that I did not mention is that with audio books I can stop listening to the book. Sync with my PC or Mac and the bookmark is transfered to the PC or Mac. So I can listen to it where I left off on my PC or Mac. Then stop sync again and transfer the bookmark to the iPod. This enables me to listen to the book on the road. Then in the office and then back on the road again with out missing a beat.

So aside from better battery life thanks to the larger battery Dell puts into It's larger form factor and that it is one hundred dollars cheaper. Is there any more to the Dell DJ?

Because if not. I would argue that with the second to none interface, seamless integration with iTunes (making the music management a no brainer for anyone), the best interface with audio books with bookmark transfer, the great third party products that enhance the iPod allowing me to seamlessly connect my iPod to my Bose, Alpine Car Stereo, Altec Lansing inMotion Boom Box etc. A battery life that is greater than what I need. That it is also my number one Mac diagnostic tool. That it is also my external HD for transferring data. That is an alternative boot device for my Mac in an emergency (an emergency that has yet to happen). To me all the above equals to spending another one hundred bucks easy.

Unseating the iPod in a few years is a heck of a long time in this business. My radar does not go out that far. So I do not know if your faith in the failure of the iPod will be true or not. But from what I see in the pipe. I will agree with you in that it will not be unseated for a few years at the earliest. And you better hope Apple starts fumbling the ball really soon. Because that is another factor that has to happen for your prediction to come true.

I found you last comment a little cryptic. What did you mean by "Another thing, if only you could use such a great interface for the iPod". As in the DJ has a better interface? If that is what you meant. Please back it up. I can certainly find a bunch of articles stating that the iPod interface it the best. Let's try to stay objective here :-)

Bill Maxwell

9/26/2004 7:12 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hey I just checked out the Dell web site. It states that the Dell 20 GB DJ is $279.00. Yet the Apple 20 GB iPod is $299.00. What happened to the one hundred dollar advantage ;-)

If this is an error I apologize and please post a URL of the true cost of the Dell 20 GB DJ. That is if it is not $279.00.

BTW this makes it only $21.00 cheaper ;-)

Look like advantage goes to the iPod.

Bill Maxwell

9/26/2004 7:44 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Can I have your iPod? Let me know

JJSV

9/26/2004 8:31 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hmmm. Well I think I have shown that my iPod is an essential tool for me for both Music and Work. And I even forgot to say that I use it to sync my address book so that my address book is always with me and sync with my multiple calendars with event alarms so that my calendars are always with me. Some nice PDA functions.

I would love to give it to you. But it is just to important to me to give up.

Still for just another $21.00 more than a Dell 20GB DJ you can also enjoy one. It may have 4 hours less battery life than the Dell 20GB DJ. But I think you will find 12 hours to be plenty.

And if you happen to speak another language the iPod will be a better move as well. As it supports the following languages.

English, French, German, Japanese, Spanish, Italian, Dutch, Danish, Norwegian, Finnish, Swedish, Korean, Simplified Chinese, Traditional Chinese.

I think I better stop listing the advantages of the iPod and let Chris catch up. If I make the list to big he may not respond.

Bill Maxwell

9/26/2004 8:49 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thanks Bill,
I guess Chris was expecting lots of rants and raves from the Mac community but instead got an intelligent response. Anyway what's with people wanting the iPod to fail? don't know is it just jealousy.

9/26/2004 11:35 PM  
Blogger CRC said...

It certainly isn't jealousy, that's for sure. Nor do I want to see the iPod fail, I just don't want to get ripped off for a subpar MP3 player because it had a multimillion dollar ad campaign behind it.

When I got my 15 gig DJ it was $200. Now you can get it for $179. The cheapest iPod I believe is the 20 gig now, which is $300. That doesn't fit in most people's budgets, although of course the HD is bigger.

You've been busy Bill and I haven't had time to read all of your responses yet (got tons of work to do for law school, concerning copyright protection no less). I appreciate your comments as I appreciate any informed comments on this site. I'll respond to them more pointedly, hopefully later today.

9/27/2004 8:15 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Just a inside perspective...I work for Apple, my cousin for Dell. Yea , sure makes for interesting holidays! ;-) Anyway, my cousin has an iPod, as does his boss I later found out. He uses his Pocket PC to control his iTunes app through a browser anywhere in his house etc., in other words a first class geek. Anyway, I was at a wedding with a lot of Dell people, and when I was "outed" as working for Apple the three Dell guys with iPods joined me in making fun of the one guy that had a DJ. Even he later confessed he made a mistake. So there ya go... ;-)

9/27/2004 9:26 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

On Chris' last comment - he moved the ball! He went from comparing a 20GB DJ price w/ 20 GB iPod price to comparing 15 GB DJ price w/ 20 GB iPod price. 15 does not equal 20, Chris - let's stick with the 20/20 comparison.

9/27/2004 10:40 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Yes please let's stick to comparing the 20 to 20. We need a level playing field to be accurate.

I agree with you about not wanting to rip people off. When I looked at the Dell 20 GB DJ it stated that it could hold 9000 songs yet the Apple 20GB iPod said it would only hold 5000 songs. In the fine print Dell used the poor sampling rate of 64 kbit and Apple used the much better (yet minimal for me) 128 kbit sample rate. So assuming that the sample rates are linear. Dell will only hold 4500 songs at 128 kbit sample rate. That is 90 percent the song capacity of the iPod. But the Dell DJ is 93 percent the cost of the iPod. So who is ripping off who here? Also why is Dell trying to fool its customers by stating a capacity of 9000 songs? A capacity using a compression rate that no one would really use.

As for AAC. AAC is Apple's brand name for mp4. The successor to mp3 as stated by the MPEG board. So AAC is not a closed propriety format of Apple. Where as WMA is a closed propriety format of Microsoft.

I have received personal testimonials form Music professors at Stanford who have told me that AAC is a more accurate representation of the original music than WMA. So not only does it have better compression but it sounds better than WMA.

One other nice feature of the iPod is that if I am really picky about my music. I can choose to compress my music with a loss-less compression from Apple. So I can have exact CD quality sound yet only use 50 percent the capacity of the original size. Does the Dell DJ have such a feature?

Looking forward to you digesting what I have put out and seeing your response. I am hoping you can be true to your sediments of being based on the facts. Like any good lawyer shoud be. Right? :-)

Bill Maxwell

9/27/2004 11:37 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

From what I read, you have not only "moved the ball," but you are being disloyal to your sediments .
My imagination is running wild.

- Disbelief Suspended .

9/28/2004 12:44 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Seems awfully quiet now.

Could it be game, set and match to the iPod :-)

Bill Maxwell

9/29/2004 11:26 AM  
Blogger Tom said...

Lame. who cares so much about a suped up walkman? Mines better! No mines better! I'm the bigger super-nerd! Get over it. All of you have too much money to waste on these fricken things. Go buy a $20 mp3 player that plays mp3s on cd. Do the math, how many cds would you have to fill up to equal the 300 bucks you dropped on that i-pod? How many songs do you need at one time anyway? It seems that the basic idea behind these devices is to be able to brag about how cool you are for having one. Get over it. Chris, I know you've got better things to do than put out this geek-bait. And you geeks, get back to work designing killer robots or something else besides an i-pod to cover up for your insecurities.

10/03/2004 1:06 PM  
Blogger CRC said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

10/05/2004 10:06 AM  
Blogger CRC said...

The last comment was by me, I erased it because the links didn't copy correctly. Read on...


Bill, you may be shocked to hear that some people are busy doing things other than wanking off on their MP3 player in the broom closet of the SoHo Apple store (I know that was rude, but it's supposed to be funny, anyway I couldn't help myself). Unlike a debate on the playground there is no "game, set, match" here because, while there are technical differences between the devices, in the end this is opinion (note that I am the only person here who owns and has used both devices). There's also no "moving the ball" because we never determined that the 20 gig was the sole MP3 player we were talking about, you don't get to make up rules so that you "automatically win." Besides, you're in my court.

I can't help it if Apple has choosen to price their cheapest model at a level beyond what many people consider reasonable. The fact remains that in general, a Dell DJ can be had for $120 dollars cheaper than an iPod, with the only difference being 5 gigs of capacity. Consumers understand that 15 gigs holds a tons of music, and that 20 gigs holds even more. How Apple and Dell choose to figure out the number of songs that "fit" on their devices is irrelevant, particularly because we all know they are both choosing small songs files at very low kbps levels .

I'd also like to note that there is no "DJSurfer" site full of PC nuts. This is probably due to the fact that PC users, secure in the knowledge of their dominance of the computer market, do not feel the need to create cult-like groups to conduct pitched battles and defenses of their technology. I appreciate the fact that your followers have avoided flaming the site, but I still think you guys are crazy. I mean look at those essays you wrote, no PC user would bother. Also, I have no crew to reply with their personal stories of how they "went to a wedding" and talked to Dell people and realized they made a mistake by getting the iPod. Honestly, I just think the whole concept of "Dell people" and "Apple people" is so ridiculous. I don't doubt that the iPod works better with an Apple computer than the DJ, but I know for a fact that the DJ works better with the PC.

[Totally off topic: As a side note, the only reason Apple is so unsuccessful is because they have monopolized their OS. Both MS and Apple are monopolies, except that MS has a better business plan of licensing out their OS to anyone who wanted to make a compatible computer, while Apple jealously guarded theirs - ultimately resulting in Apple nearly going out of business (rescued by the iPod) while the PC took over the world. I just want all the MacSurfers to know that when they whine about the MS monopoly and how the Mac OS is superior. If the Mac OS was better and was compatible with most computers and was licensed out to other CPU makers then maybe Apple would actually get somewhere.]

Fact: you can get the 15 gig DJ and save $120 over the cheapest iPod, that's quite a bit of money. I would contend that even if you were to buy a 20 gig DJ and then spend $20 extra on the Dudebox PC-DJ interface program, thereby saving NO money by purchasing the DJ you've still made a better choice (if you own a PC anyway). Dudebox is infinitely easier to use than iTunes for organizing music on your MP3 player.

Why do I still think the DJ is better despite your essays?

1. There is only a minimal size difference between the devices, millimeters actually. You suggest this is very important to you, well we are glad to hear that, but many people would not think it worth that $120 bucks.

2. The interface on the DJ is easily as good as the iPod's. I know everyone thinks the whole touch pad thing on the iPod is cool (I like it too, being that I own both devices and have used them), but the DJ's wheel is just as easy to manipulate. As with any device you use regularly you learn to use the DJ without looking at it, as you suggest you do with the iPod.

3. No one gives a crap if the iPod comes in Afrikaans and Senagalese, etc. Nearly anyone who can afford to buy these things speak one of the languages that comes on either device (but no doubt there will be some "MacSurfer" with a personal story about how the iPod's languages were the very reason they got it...and that it saved their life or something).

4. AAC file format is like the Sony Memory Stick, no one uses it except for the 5 people who got suckered in. AAC is not used on PCs, meaning not used by 99% of human beings who listen to music on their computer or MP3 player. iTunes sells AAC files at 128 kbps, an objectively low level. And really, no one wants to hear about "your professor friend at Stanford who told you...blah blah." A professor at Yale/Harvard/Oxford told me that the vast majority of computer users use PC's and that therefore WMA compatibility is more useful for a device (even though in reality we all use the MP3 format anyway).

5. Although I refuse to pick through the devices differences with a fine-toothes comb like you have, I notice that one feature the DJ has that the iPod does not is an internal microphone on the side of the device records voice memos. Useful? I don't use it too often, but hey, who uses AAC?

Read on:

Review 1 here.
"Apple Computer's tenuous hold on the portable audio-player market might soon fall thanks to a predictable foe, Dell, whose Dell Digital Jukebox (Dell DJ) is off to a strong start. The Dell unit is a bit bigger than Apple's elegant iPod, but it features a more intuitive scrolling navigation wheel and support for Microsoft's ubiquitous Windows Media Audio (WMA) format, which all online music services except Apple use (even staunch Microsoft competitor RealNetworks, which has its own audio and video formats, uses WMA--a telling decision). The Dell DJ, which I previewed at COMDEX last week and will review soon for Connected Home EXPRESS, also features dramatically better battery life than the iPod, lower prices, a built-in audio recorder, and--gasp--a simpler interface than the iPod. As the owner of two iPods, I've long expected the PC world to catch up with--and surpass--Apple's entry. My only surprise is that it's taken this long. After all, Creative Labs, a PC company, not Apple, first innovated the hard-disk-based portable media player."

Review 2 here:
The first thing we noticed about the DJ is how solid the unit feels to the touch...
One of the DJ's biggest strengths is its ease of use, which renders the manual useless for all but the greenest of newbies. In conjunction with dedicated Menu and Back buttons, the extremely intuitive menu system--very similar to the iPod's--makes navigation effortless. If needless complexity irritates you, you'll enjoy this player's clean interface design...
An internal microphone on the side of the device records voice memos...
We found the player's sound to be clean and strong, an appraisal borne out by the specs: a 94dB signal-to-noise ratio and less than 0.1 percent Total Harmonic Distortion...
The area in which the DJ truly rocks is battery life: an astounding 19.5 hours--significantly more than the 16 hours that Dell claims...

Post here:
About AAC quoting a NYT article about iTunes crappy sound quality. Note Apple freak defense comments.

Stuff concerning the battery problems with the iPod:
http://www.ipodsdirtysecret.com/.
http://www.popsci.com/popsci/computers/article/0,12543,588084,00.html.
FINALLY – I have both the DJ and the iPod. The iPod has always given me problems whereas the Dell DJ worked great from the moment I pulled it out of the box. So there.

Ok, that’s it for me. I am not a Dell salesman, nor do I have a tribe of zealots to back me up, nor does law school provide me with the time to write these defenses. I hope you enjoy your overpriced iPods people. Enjoy them while they are still cool.

10/05/2004 10:10 AM  
Blogger CRC said...

Here's the CNet review of the Dell DJ, and of the most recent iPod.

Here are a couple of Google seaches of variants of Apple iPod vs. Dell DJ.
"ipod vs. dell dj".

"apple ipod vs. dell dj".

ipod vs. dell dj.

apple ipod vs. dell dj.

I'll post new links when I come across them.

10/05/2004 10:24 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hey Chris:

Firstly I do have a sense of humor. I am intentionally being sterile so as to counter your baseless claim that all you would get from "Apple freaks" is freakiness from MacSurfers. In fact I have found the Mac enthusiast to be as rational and as sane as your typical heaven's gate member (that is a joke :-).

So we are talking about your opinion here. Gosh I wish you made that more plain earlier. When you said "the superior and cheaper Dell DJ" that sounded like a statement and not opinion. A statement that at best is only half right. For future reference you might want to start that with "In my opinion blah blah blah". Also if this is opinion why do you say this "but I know for a fact the DJ works better with the PC."? That sounds like a statement again. A statement that is again without technical backup. And again you start stating facts. And I quote "Fact: you can get the 15 gig DJ ..." So what is this blog about opinion or facts?

Then when you list your reasons for why you like the Dell DJ more even after my "essays". You only state one technical feature that is better on the DJ than the iPod. If that is your considered response. You must be talking opinion because that is your only refuge. You have no technical argument for the Dell DJ being "superior" to the Apple iPod. But I will admit that the built in mic is a nice feature. I can see it being useful in recording lectures etc. There is a third party attachment for the iPod that will enable this for the iPod. But I will give that as one technical feature that is not on the iPod.

Also why slam the fact that the iPod supports many languages?

BTW I only listed the languages for menu support. Here is the list of additional languages for Display Song, Artist and Album Info: Bulgarian, Croatian, Czech, Danish, Dutch, English, Finnish, French, German, Greek, Hungarian, Italian, Japanese, Korean, Norwegian, Polish, Portuguese, Romanian, Russian, Serbian, Slovak, Slovenian, Simplified Chinese, Spanish, Swedish, Traditional Chinese, Turkish and Ukrainian :-)

My contributions to your blog do not take a lot of my time. I can type really fast and shooting down the idea that the Dell DJ is superior is not really that hard. But I am glad to see you have finally found the time to respond. Besides if you have not wanked off to your MP3 player in the broom closet of the SoHo Apple Store you just have not lived yet. You should try it sometime. You will never go back :-)

Actually I am not just a person who only knows about the Macintosh and the iPod. I am also an apt Windoze administrator and I also know Linux, Solaris and some other UNIX OS's out there. Although I do not own a Dell DJ I have got my mits on one long enough to know the iPod is technically superior. Yes that is a statement and not opinion. I think I have established that the iPod is technically superior and we do not need to go over all that again. And the iPod is even technically superior to the Dell DJ on a PC. If you really want to go there. Bring it on baby. Let's get some technical facts on this one and not hide behind "this is my opinion". But I know what you are thinking. Did I fire off 5 technical facts about the iPod or was that 6 technical facts about the iPod.? You know in all the commotion, I lost count. So you have to ask yourself. Do you feel lucky punk? Well do you? :-) (and don't tell me you do not know about Dirty Harry)

I agree with you that Apple has a monopoly on its hardware. The vast majority of Macintoshes out there are running Mac OS from Apple. There are a few running Linux and Be OS. Other than that it is almost all Mac OS. But so what? Sun dominates its hardware and IBM dominates its server hardware and HP dominates its server hardware. All these companies have been doing business for decades. With the exception of Sun they are all doing really well. What is your point here?

Greater market share is not empirical evidence of technical superiority of a product. It may be a factor in determining superior technology. But market share alone will not prove that. I know both UNIX and Windoze. I can not think of anyone who knows both that would say Windoze had superior technology. There are more cockroaches in the world than humans. By this logic cockroaches are superior. I and I am sure you do not think so. Again if you are going to say something is superior. Please back it up with some technical facts and not hide behind "this is my opinion". So where is Windoze superior technology to UNIX systems like Mac OS X.

Also can you post a link that is not almost a year old or one that dose not praise the iPod better interface?

Also the iPod uses the same poly lithium ion battery technology of the Dell DJ. So Dell DJ's would have the same battery life issue. Maybe you do not hear about the Dell DJ because hardly anybody uses them.

I am sorry to see the bad experience that Casey Neistat had. But even they have acknowledged Apple's new battery replacement policy. So problem resolved.

And here is a quote from one of the other links you provided. "Yesterday morning i ordered a Dell DJ and at night i visited a friend of mine who has a iPod 10gb, i was very impressed with the sound quality of the iPod. Will my Dell DJ sound as clear and loud as the iPod??? Please be honest."

And another quote "The iPod sounds better with my Grado SR80s too (met John Grado as he lives 12 blocks away from my apt. in Brooklyn) on higher resolutions - I can tell. This is because the DAC & componentry is a bit more advanced on the iPod. If sound quality matters, either sell the DJ and get an iPod and use AACs/Waves or just appreciate the DJ for what it is - an excellent value for the $$." Again superior technology to the iPod.

Surely you can find better links that this to back you up. BTW if you want me to post some links backing up my argument. Just say the word.

AAC is nothing like the propriety format of Sony's Memory Stick. AAC is simply Apple's brand name for mp4. The successor to mp3 as determined by the MPEG board. It is not a closed propriety format like WMA. One of the things I think Apple is doing much better than Microsoft is the support of Open-Source software. Apple uses Apache, OpenSSL, OpenSSH, SAMBA and even its OS is Open sourced. Apple has greatly contributed to the above open source efforts. What open source efforts has Microsoft contributed to?

I have read about the problems you have had with your iPod. Like I have stated in my previous posts. You seem to have a dud. So get it replaced. So there.

Anyway I think that I have proven the iPod is superior technology. So I am correct that the iPod is technically superior. You are correct in that in your "opinion" the Dell DJ is superior.

I do not have a "tribe of zealots" to back me up. I have not ask for any of the above additional posts. I simply know both products and have presented a coherent and technically correct case that the iPod is superior to the Dell DJ and thus successfully disputed your claim to the contrary. You have only offered your "opinion" and some rants with a few technical facts. Again if you want to talk facts. Put up or shut up.

It seems that you are in law school. I will assume that means you want some kind of vocation in the law profession. The reason that I am being so through in my case. Is that I hope you learn to get your ducks in a row. Say exactly what you mean. And be prepared to back it up. Because from what I understand about practicing the law. You will need to have all that.

Have a good one

Bill Maxwell

10/05/2004 8:05 PM  
Blogger CRC said...

"Bring it on"? Did you really write that?

Seriously, you can't possibly believe that you can show up a comparable device by naming a few technical advantages another has? I can name a few advantages for mine, you can name a few advantages for yours. Then I say the DJ is better, then you say the iPod is better. It does come down to opinion, get over it.

I am not going to repeat the same thing over and over and over but I'll summarize for you:

My opinion of the Dell DJ, much like your opinion of the iPod, is based to some degree on technical adantages and also includes elements of opinion. The Dell DJ is much cheaper, has a better computer interface, works better with PCs, has much longer battery life, etc. The iPod costs much more because Apple need consumers to pay for all those ads.

You aren't going to fool anyone with your "lets debate the facts" crap. Anyone who isn't a complete moron understands that making a "factual statement" such as "the Dell DJ is superior" is actually making a statement of opinion. It's like saying the iPod can hold 4000 or 6000 or 100000000 songs. They are all factual statements and are all true statements depending on how big the MP3 file is.

Some lines of argument are disingenuous due to a lack of relevance. An example may be your language thing...who cares? I'm sure the DJ has many language options too, but I'm not going to check because it doesn't matter. And maybe you've heard of the whole "comparing apples and oranges" thing? Is your language advantage better than the DJ's recording abilities advantage? I think that would be...a matter of opinion, shockingly.

Do you have a DJ? No you don't, but I do. I also have an iPod. I think the Dell DJ is superior for the many reasons I have described in multiple blog posts. Even if they were the same price or the DJ was more expensive it would still be a better product (that's a statement of fact there). That's what I think and it's the truth (another horrid statement of fact).

So go back to your George W. Bush style reality where everything is black and white and you can "win" the debate by being resolute. In the meantime I'll take my legal lessons from real professors, thank you.

10/05/2004 8:54 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Chris:

Yeah I said bring it on. I wish you would.

It may surprise you that the noun of superior is "One that surpasses another in rank or quality". This is can not an opinion this has to be a statement. And to back a statement you must have facts. So far you have provided a very anemic list of technical facts. I on the other hand have provided a laundry list of technical facts. No need to repeat myself. See my past postings. And I have more in the wings if needed.

You have said in this blog "But in the end, to me anyway, it's the technology that matters" Yet you still will not list any of the technical details to back that up. You only make lofty boasts like "The Dell DJ is much cheaper, has a better computer interface, works better with PCs, has much longer battery life, etc.". That has no substance. If that is your opinion so be it. But if it is your opinion that would seem to contradict you earlier postings that had a factual theme to them.

Even the URL's you provided backed up my case. What more can I say.

Now you are resorting to saying I have George W. Bush style of argument. Where everything is black and white.

Is you technical argument that weak?

Like I said bring it on. List some specific facts. These two devices are real things that can be fully quantified and examined scientifically. No need to use lofty statements. These are not complex things like social issues that are impossible to quantify. So you may dismiss me as being black and white. When in fact I am being scientific. When will you be?

Stop harping on about the language thing. I understand that you may think that only the English speaking world counts. But that was just one of my extensive list of technically superior items of the iPod. Please pick on another technically superiority. There are plenty to choose from :-)

All you have to do is concede "that it is just your opinion that the Dell DJ is superior" and that you are not trying to say "the fact is that the Dell DJ is technologically superior". If you did this at the start I would not have posted anything. Because I respect the opinions of others.

So this does not ultimately have to come down to opinion. I can and have proved my case on the technical superiority of the iPod. If you want to dispute that. Please, pretty please, pretty please with sugar on top, list some real facts and stop with the lofty boasts with no substance. Like a good lawyer should. Right? I bet your professors would agree.

Come on baby, BRING IT ON !!!!!!!!!!

Bill Maxwell

10/05/2004 10:33 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

http://www.forbes.com/markets/2004/10/06/1006automarketscan05.html?partner=yahoo&referrer=

Bill Maxwell

10/06/2004 8:40 PM  
Blogger Tom said...

geeks

10/06/2004 9:05 PM  
Blogger CRC said...

'Round and 'round you go. You have way too much time on your hands Bill. Don't you realize no one is ever going to slog through all this anyway because these comments are so long? This is a book we're working on here.

By the way, that Forbes article you pasted above (you can make links here you know: Forbes article) about teens having iPods on the brain is very much relevant to the discussion here in that it is a testament to the huge success of Apple's very expensive marketing campaign. It's that same marketing you are paying the extra $100 plus for when you choose the iPod over its competitors. You are getting more "cool," but not better technology.

You have proved something in your comments Bill, but it isn't the technical superiority of the iPod. You've proved that you're an iPod loving stubborn geek who doesn't understand the real-world difference between fact and opinion. By the way, that last sentence is my opinion stated as though it were an objective fact, in case you didn't catch that.

I can't believe I am going on with this...

Forbes article or the same article in MSNBC:
"Travelers who can't bear to be separated from their CDs should snap up Dell's version of Apple's iPod, called the DJ Digital Jukebox, which sells for far less than its competitor."

Gadgeteer Review:
Summary of the review: The reviewer got the Dell DJ instead of the iPod. S/he likes it because it plays WMA files, charges from the USB plug, has great sound quality, is solidly constructed, is sold at a "bargain" price, and Dudebox is better than iTunes. Cons for the DJ are that it's bigger than the iPod, lacks the same aftermarket product support, has less intuitive menu systems. Maybe this all sounds familiar...because it's all the same stuff already said above, although I'm sure you'll want to repeat it at least a few more times in your bid for ultimate victory over the barbarian Dell DJ users.

FastBusiness article:
"But even at iPod's lowest list price of $299--and using a conservative margin estimate of 8%--it's clear that the iPod contributed substantially all of Apple's 2003 estimated operating income of $24.8 million, excluding onetime charges. Without the iPod, Apple is in trouble. That's why recent releases of competing portable music players take on great significance. Selling for as little as $299 [way less now, $179], the Dell DJ is about $100 cheaper than the iPod..."

MSNMoney article:
"...iPod-rival, the Dell DJ 15, which has a nice price point of $199 [actually $179 now] and integrates well with your PC -- but lacks the iPod’s cool ergonomics.

Connected Home Media article: ouch!
"One of last arguments Apple supporters always dredge up is that, well, choice is nice, but Apple makes the best products. That was true when Apple had no competition, but it's certainly not true with online music services today, and the argument is beginning to fall apart with portable devices as well. The Microsoft-oriented side has always offered more choice, but now some of these devices are starting to outpace the iPod in key areas.
"Dell's utilitarian Digital Jukebox (DJ) might be a bit heftier than the iPod, for example, but it offers three times the battery life and much more reliable mechanical buttons than the flaky controls on recent iPods. The DJ's buttons won't typically get pressed accidentally when you drop the device into your pocket. (Woe to the iPod user who forgets to slide the Lock switch before pocketing the device.) The DJ is also much more scratch-resistant than the curiously fragile iPod, which scratches if you look at it funny. Finally, the DJ is much cheaper than the iPod and of course far more compatible with online music stores. A new version of the player, due this fall, will further close the gap."
So many statements of fact in there! What to do!!!!

Me:
The Dell DJ is better, both technically and by price. I've listed the reasons in a half dozen posts and in these comments. I'm sure there are other reasons that I haven't turned up because I don't care to spend more time on this. You disagree with me, you listed your reasons. Congratulations on convincing yourself that you're a winner. Why don't you do another few long comments and maybe your "margin of victory" will increase. I'm sure you could find a multitude of articles to refute everything I have copied into this comment if you search for 5 minutes. Guess what though? It'll still be the same repetitive stuff you wrote above.

Btw, I'll do a fair summary of these comments in the post since I know no one will ever read all these comments.

10/09/2004 4:59 PM  
Blogger CRC said...

By the way, the Dell DJ 15 gig is now priced at $150. That's HALF THE PRICE of the cheapest iPod, which is 20 gig.

Here's the link.

10/09/2004 5:17 PM  
Blogger CRC said...

Some people don't like the remote that comes with the iPod either. Is this a nitpicky, whiny, and silly complaint? Yeah, but whatever, to almost anyone so are millimeter differences in size, memo recording abilities, and a few extra languages.

10/10/2004 3:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hey Chris:

I'll keep this one short. I know you have a short attention span and can not handle "essays".

I'm still waiting on the technical specs that make the Dell DJ superior. I am still seeing these lame lofty statements. And you are posting URL's that contradict your previous postings. I am sure you can do better that this. When will bring it on?

http://yahoo.businessweek.com/technology/content/oct2004/tc20041011_9975_tc119.htm

Bill Maxwell

10/11/2004 4:18 PM  
Blogger CRC said...

It's sad that you're having so much trouble grasping what is going on here.

You haven'e shown us any tech specs for the iPod that makes it any better than the DJ, yet you keep asking me to "bring it on" as if you've proven something yourself. Also, you suggest I am being repetitive, yet I have said in several comments above that we are just going around in circles and that you just keep saying the same thing.

Maybe I need to be even more plain than I have been already so you'll get it - we've named a few things about the MP3 players that make them different and now we disagree on which is better. Is that simple enough? Or are you going to respond now and say something stupid like, "but I proved blah scientifically...and...your statementsare all just opinion...so bring it on again!"

Now why don't you just find something better to waste your intimidating intellect on?

10/11/2004 5:30 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hey Chris:

It was you that put up the statement that the Dell DJ was superior to the Apple iPod. All I have asked of you is to prove it.

So I tell you what. Let's wipe the slate clean. On your next post put up the technical specs (and only technical specs) that show the Dell DJ as superior. I will then post my technical specs on why the Apple iPod is superior. And we will see who has a better list.

Fair enough?

Bill Maxwell

10/11/2004 8:17 PM  
Blogger CRC said...

Your skull must be as thick as a brick wall. Moron, we have listed the differences between the MP3 players already, repeatedly. I say the DJ is superior and I proved it as much as I am willing to bother. I used tech specs, price, and more subjective opinion to do so (as did you re the iPod, as unconvincing as it was). Must I list the reasons again?

You even said this was getting repetitive, well I agree, it's repetitive and boring. This is not a winnable contest, it's like arguing with someone about religion, no one changes their mind. If you care so much get a blog and keep discussing this with yourself. I'm not sure how I could be more clear.

10/12/2004 1:38 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hey Chris:

Somehow I thought you would wimp out again.

OK we will leave it here.

You ranting without technical facts on your religion on how the Dell DJ is superior and that the Apple iPod will be unseeded as the number one mp3 player. Despite all the facts showing that the Apple iPod market is growing and not shrinking. And you can continue to dismiss the mp3 public as a bunch of mindless corporate zombies who only purchase the iPod because of the great and expensive advertisement that Apple does (gosh the mind control of Apple is amazing surly they use the hypno toad :-). Because it must be that and not that the iPod is a better product. Because to think that people are smart enough buy a better product more than any other would defy your religion.

And given that this is the only blog of yours that gets any posting. You will get to continue to rant on about this alone and do as you said "keep discussing this with yourself".

Bill Maxwell

10/12/2004 9:08 AM  
Blogger CRC said...

It's a fact that people often pay more for inferior products. That's what marketing is all about. So you think I'm a wimp because we've both said everything there is to say and now this is boring? Well, you are about as dumb as a rock for wanting to keep on with it (and because you refuse to even debate in a genuine manner, I at least can admit that there is some opinion involved).

By the way, at some point in the near future I'll be doing a post that fairly compares the two based on this thread (and I will make fun of you in it). You can come back and whine some more then.

10/12/2004 10:26 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hey Chris:

I didn't say you are a wimp. I said you would wimp out. Man I can not wait to see how you twist my words in your next blog.

So marketing is all about people paying more for inferior products? Do you think before you type this stuff out? And whom did you say is dumb as a rock?

Well I hope you next post is based on the facts. That you will post hard facts. Not use URL's that are over a year old. That you will not post URL's of other people's blogs. That you will not post URL's from obscure sites that you have desperately found to back your case. That you will not post URL's that back my case. That you will post URL's of decent technical review sites etc. And even maybe bullet point the technical capabilities.

I understand this will require you to research both products. Something that you have admitted that you have not done. But if you had done that. This blog may have never happened. Because you would have seen the error in stating the Dell DJ is superior.

Still I am sure you and I and maybe two more people will enjoy your new blog. And I know you will make fun of me. You have to. To take me up on a rational, scientific, fact based, lucid, coherent argument is losing formula for you.

Looks like Apple iPod is now up to 82 percent of the US retail hard drive based digital music players. But keep the faith brother. For it is written that the iPod shall fall from grace. And a day of reckoning will be upon all those who doubted the holy Dell DJ :-)

Dang you must pity all those Apple marketing drones out there. Sucking up the hypno toad that Apple puts out. I mean they are such fools. If only they had free will.

http://www.theregister.co.uk/2004/10/12/ipod_us_share/

Gosh I hope that posting wasn't to long for you. Did I exceed your attention span?

Bill Maxwell

10/12/2004 1:05 PM  
Blogger CRC said...

Bill, do you know how to make links? Do you know the difference between a "blog" and a "post." This site has had over 26,000 hits in the last three months and gets an average of about 250 per day at the moment. If you think no one will read your comments why do you write them? I get at least 50 hits a day for people Goolging ' Apple iPod vs. Dell DJ,' so people are looking for this info and coming here. Whether they will read this book we have written is another issue.

You're still asking me to "post hard facts." Did you even finish high school yet? Have you not read the last 5 comments I've made where I've said that we did that and are now disagreeing over them? I guess you know something the rest of us don't about nature of fact, opinion, and the iPod vs. DJ debate.

10/12/2004 3:53 PM  
Blogger CRC said...

My understanding is that you've already posted what you consider to be "the hard facts" about the iPod and that I've done the same about the Dell DJ in these comments and my various posts on the topic. If that isn't the case then why don't you show us what you mean.

You are so intent on "proving" your case with the "hard facts" that I challenge you to do it now. "Prove" to the readers, using the "hard facts," that the iPod is objectively better than the Dell DJ. I will use whatever you come up with (in combination with what you already wrote) in a future post that fairly compares the two devices.

Of course, I will not allow you to create ground rules that inherently advantage the iPod either, so don't bother pretending that the 15 gig DJ for $150 doesn't exist because you want a "level playing field." Go ahead and compare all the models if you want, 15, 20, 40 gig. I keep saying I think we've done already what you keep asking me to do. So, why don't you do a comment with some substance to it. Let's see what you've got. I've said repeatedly that I've already "brought it" as much as I think I need to...so why don't you show us what you mean. You either need to be more clear about what you think the difference is that makes the iPod better based on what's already been written, or you need to "bring it on" yourself, because I'm saying I've already done that.

I'll even post your full comment comparing the two if it is a fair comparison and isn't idiotic.

10/12/2004 3:56 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

OK Chris. Even though it was you that made the statement that the Dell DJ is superior. I'll be the first to summarize the technical specs that will show the iPod is superior. I'm going to work on that one a little. So expect it soon.

Note money is not a technical spec.

Besides before the fire sale of the Dell DJ. The 20 gig was only 21 dollars less. If Apple was spending the (as you say) extra 100 dollars on advertising. What was Dell spending the extra money from the 20 gig Dell DJ on?

Also it seems I was in error in my last posting. I for one will admit when I post an error. Below is the correction.

I stated that the iPod market share of hard drive based music players was 82 percent. It seems that is old data. That was last years number. It turns out the correct percentage of iPod market share of hard drive based music players is 92.1 percent. With players from Creative Technology and Digital Networks taking up second and third place with 3.7 and 3.2 percent respectively. The Dell DJ was not even mentioned. But one can deduce that is must be 3.2 percent or lower. Probably way lower. No wonder Dell is doing a fire sale right now.

Gosh you have to admire that hypno toad marketing machine from Apple. After all marketing is all about getting people to pay more for inferior products. I read somewhere that is a fact.

If only the hard drive based music player people had free will. Damn Apple for stealing it.

http://news.com.com/Its+all+about+the+iPod/2100-1041_3-5406519.html

Bill Maxwell

10/12/2004 7:37 PM  
Blogger CRC said...

You can distort what I write and put words in my mouth all you want Bill. I obviously would never say that the sole purpose of advertising is to get people to buy inferior products. But if you can't admit that big advertising campaigns add to the price of a product then that's fine. I've had more years of post graduate study than you've had in highschool, I'm not that thick headed. I realize that marketshare may be a good indication of quality in a market undistorted by marketing, I also realize that marketing efforts are a driving force behind marketshare and that people often buy things because of the "cool" factor (a result of marketing) and not for performance.

You can also pretend price has no bearing on whether one product may be better than another. That's cool. Hide behind the term "technical." What I hope you do is provide a holistic review though.

Bill...I'm trying to get you to look at these products without the massive bias you so obviously have. Get with it man, you're not going to convince me the iPod is better because I've already done the research and I OWN AND USE THEM BOTH. But maybe if you're honest about the differences you can actually send in a meaningful comment. That's what I'm looking for from you, something other than "prove it" and "bring it on." A fair look at the devices. If you send in some lopsided review then obviously I will not use it in a post.

And as for the firesale...if you read the articles posted you would learn that Dell was moving the DJ out to make room for a new model that is going to be released for the holiday season.

Finally, my attention span is quite long...but only when I am not reading drivel, so lets have something meaningful for once.

[And please, go to an HTML for beginners page and learn how to make links to the articles you paste the URLs for.]

10/12/2004 8:09 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Technical advantages of the iPod 20 GB:

Has the Dock port:
This is probably the biggest thing that really sets the iPod above the Dell DJ. With it I can connect to the Apple Dock. Just drop it in and I am connected to my computer for syncing and power for recharging. It also connects the line out audio feed to my bose home stereo so I can listen to my iPod music with out the hassle of using the head phone jack which is subject to volume control changes. I can also connect it to my Altec Lansing InMotion to make it a boom box. Or I can connect it to my Alpine car stereo and have the line out audio feed perfectly into my car stereo and even control the iPod from the Alpine controls. No need to interface with the iPod controls. There are many more third party offerings that give the iPod unparalleled flexibility thanks to this port.

http://www.apple.com/ipod/accessories.html

http://www.alpine-usa.com/

Click wheel interface:
Hands down the best user interface of any mp3 player on the market.

Seamless interface with iTunes:
Easily syncs with the iTunes application. So you only have to manage you songs once.

AAC (MPEG-2) audio format:
AAC (MPEG-2) is the open standard successor to mp3 as determined by the MPEG board. Just check out www.mpeg.org for more info.

AALC (Apple Loss-less) audio format:
With this codec you can have exacting CD quality with only half the HD space of raw WAV / AIFF. If you really much have the highest quality audio. The iPod can give it to you at half the space on the HD.

Audio Book playback:
Support chapter selection and audio book mark transfers. This means I can listen to an audio book on my iPod while driving to work and sync with my computer. Then listen on my computer where I left off on the iPod. Sync again and listen to the audio book in my car where I left off on the computer. I can even adjust the speed the audio books play back if I can absorb the information faster. There are also audio magazines to choose from as well.

Address Book Sync:
The iPod will sync with my address book. Allowing me to view my address book from the iPod screen.

Calendar Sync:
The iPod will sync with my calendar so I can see my various calendars and even have alarms go off as part of the calendar events.

To do list sync:
The iPod will sync with my to do lists.

Notes Display:
I can have plain text notes display their contents on the iPod display.

Better ear buds:
Apple uses neodymium transducer magnets in their ear buds. Which makes them 5 times more powerful than ear buds that use aluminum, cobalt or ceramic drivers.

On the fly play lists:
Able to create new playlist without the need to connect to the computer.

Multi Language support:
The iPod has built in support for 15 languages for its menu system and 28 languages to display Song, Artist and album info.

Upgradeable firmware:
Enables support for future audio formats.

Has an alarm clock:
Can go off with an alarm or music.

Weighs 2 ounces less:
Apple iPod 5.6 ounces Dell DJ 7.61 ounces

Smaller form factor:
Apple iPod 4.1 by 2.4 by 0.57 inches Dell DJ 4.1 x 2.7 x .86 inches

Rate my songs on the fly:
I can rate my songs on the iPod and sync with iTunes to transfer. I can then create a smart list based on my ratings.

Play games:
I can play Music Quiz, Solitaire, Brick and Parachute to kill some time if needed.

Emergency boot device for my Mac:
This is a Mac only feature. So this is not a big feature. But for us Mac users it is worth mentioning. I can install Mac OS X on my iPod and if needed I can boot my Mac off my iPod.



Technical advantages of the Dell DJ 20 GB:

WMA audio format:
WMA the closed and propriety format from Microsoft.

Built in microphone:
Can conveniently record lectures, meetings etc.

Longer battery life:
Dell now says 20 hours on the very same model they claimed to be 16 hours just 2 weeks ago. Although I think that is strange. I'll give the Dell DJ 20 hours and the Apple iPod 12 hours.

MusicMatch software:
Dell DJ comes with MusicMatch software to manage your music.

Bill Maxwell

10/13/2004 10:05 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

BTW it looks like the Dell DJ sale is off. When I went to the site the price is back to $199.00 for the 15 GB and @279.00 for the 20 GB Dell DJ.

Also I am not going to bother with links. But thanks for your advise to go to a HTML for beginners page.

Bill Maxwell

10/13/2004 10:09 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

So Chris:

How can the Dell DJ deliver pristine line out sound to your home stereo?

How can the Dell DJ deliver pristine line out sound to your car stereo?

How can the Dell DJ be controlled from your car stereo?

How can the Dell DJ be used in a boom box?

How can the Dell DJ be controlled by the boom box or boom box remote?

Can the Dell DJ play audio books and audio magazines?

Can the Dell DJ play exacting CD quality sound yet only use have the HD space?

Now I know you care little about the people in Bulgaria. But the French, German, Japanese and China have decent markets. Can the Dell DJ display in their languages?

The Dell DJ interface is not as good as the Apple iPod simple, intuitive and minimalist click wheel interface.

You have yet to answer these questions. Questions that I posted earlier.

It is for these technical reasons that the Apple iPod is superior to the Dell DJ. If you are still hanging on to your statements "superior and cheaper Dell DJ" (only half right at best) and "you paid at least $100 extra for an inferior product (all you have to do is look at teh tech specs to see that).". I now call on you to list the tech specs that back up your claim. Or are you now going to hide behind your "opinion" again?

And please stop saying that Apple charges an extra $100.00 to support their add campaign. I know companies have to spend money on adds. Lord knows I see enough Dell adds. But to say that all the $100.00 is for adds is not correct. Besides you are comparing the Dell DJ 15 GB to the Apple iPod 20 GB. The Dell DJ 20 GB is only 20 dollars less. So unless you think Dell is charging an extra $80.00 for the Dell DJ 20 GB to support their add campaign. I think you can drop the extra $100.00 for Apple adds BS.

Time to put up or shut up.

Bill Maxwell

10/14/2004 1:25 PM  
Blogger Tom said...

Bill (is this really your name? anonlymous),
What's your deal man? what do you do with your life that you have so much energy to expend defending a consumer electronics product? I hope Apple is paying your for all the i-crap you keep posting to these comments. And just to help you out a little bit, a "blog" is a site where you read "posts." I'm suprised you don't know that given how you feel about the i-pod. Face it you are a victim of marketing, You are a very severe case, so bad that you've now begun marketing the product yourself. Take a moment to think about it. You obviously really like this thing. Are you listening to it right now? Why does anyone need one of these? The answer is: you don't. It seems like you've been so taken with your consumer desires and so duped by marketing that you are forced to defend the product to justify the purchase to yourself. Just turn it off. Take a minute to clear your head. Relax and leave that thing at home for a few days.

10/14/2004 8:16 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Bill, You are out of it man. I love the iPod and I have one too. But Chris is right about one thing - you don't know the difference between a fact and an opinion. whether you think the click wheel is "Hands down the best user interface of any mp3 player on the market" is your opinion. Other people like the DJ interface better. Same with what you say about itunes, the dock port, and audio formats being better - these things are your opinion. You're just being a stubborn bastard man, you gotta lighten up.

Maybe you've heard the expression "comparing apples to oranges" - well that's what your doing anyway - you cant even compare some of these differneces fairly becausw they're just too differnt from each other. You can't say that one of these mp3 players is better because it has totally differnt features than the other even though the other one has just as many good features of its own. To some people the extra battery life of the DJ may make it better than the ipod all by itself.

And dude...what is this - "Apple uses neodymium transducer magnets in their ear buds. Which makes them 5 times more powerful than ear buds that use aluminum, cobalt or ceramic drivers." You sound just like a commercial on tv, Tom got you all figured out.

Yo man, even though i like the ipos myself...you need to get a life and an education.

Rachel Weintraub

10/14/2004 9:05 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Tom and Rachel:

Yes I am using my real name Tom.

Thanks for your comments. But please it was Chris that put the smack down with statements like

"you paid at least $100 extra for an inferior product (all you have to do is look at teh tech specs to see that)"

"It's alright, who can blame you, after all you've been caught up in the giant Apple ad campaign (which is, of course, why the iPod actually costs so much)"

"Look you Apple freaks, get over it. Your precious iPod will not be the top MP3 player forever. I'm not saying that it'll be replaced by the DJ, but it will be replaced by something new. And then what? You gonna keep whining about the good 'ol days? Get over it already, you've been sucked in by trend and marketing. Why do you have brand loyalty? "Because the product is so..." Shut up fool, you never even tried the others, you're brainwashed."

"Bring on all your freakyness MacSurfers. I can take it. In the end, I'll still be right and you'll all still be poorer and have inferior technology."

But Chris also said "I'm just having fun man.". And so am I :-)

It seems that being over the top and sarcasm are not easily conveyed on blogs.

Bill Maxwell

10/15/2004 2:03 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

It should be noted that what was asked for was technical superiority, and the list of "how can/can the DJ do this that etc" is mostly deferred to the iPod has more add-ons. As far as features go, I have a Palm Tungsten to play games and keep contacts in, and it is much more intuitive to do either in than the ipod is. As far as "pristine" audio through a home stereo, unless you got some form of streaming stereo, you still have to connect via rca's, which I do with my DJ just fine. As if any digital music is actually pristine. I've owned two iPods, 1st gen and the mini, and I have a DJ. My 1st gen is a toy for my little sister, my mini is used for exercize due to its smaller form factor, and my DJ is my portable cd collection. I could really care less about which is better, but I love to read a good debate, but being as its Chris' blog it would be imperative for you to disprove his statement by posting "Technical" information, not statements of additional features that few people use, and not by asking him to first provide his evidence to defend his opinion. Anyways, thats my two cents, for anyone who cares. But I feel better.
--
MW/.

10/21/2004 8:32 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hey MW:

Thanks for your comments.

In all fairness my posting titled "Technical advantages of the iPod 20 GB:" of 10:05 PM I only listed technical functions. It was only in the sub text of the Dock port feature that I listed some add ons and that was to illustrate how big a feature the dock port is. Everything listed is a technical function of the Apple iPod right out of the box and I listed no add ons.

Yes the Apple iPod has a lot of add ons. And it is thanks to the Apple iPod's Dock port that it has such great add ons. Hence the reason I think it is the biggest functions that makes the Apple iPod technically superior to the Dell DJ. I could have listed all the add ones. Like the battery pack and external mic add ons that would negate 2 of the 3 features the Dell DJ has over the Apple iPod. But I didn't until now.

My subsequent posting was a series of questions for Chris and was not part of my technical listing.

I also have a Palm device. One of the unfortunately discontinued yet excellent Sony Clie's. I'll give you that the interface is better for games, contacts and other such functions. But it is my opinion that for music the Apple iPod interface is more intuitive etc. for that purpose and is second to none.

It is true that you are best to connect the sound from either your Dell DJ or Apple iPod through RCA type connectors. However on the Apple iPod can connect them via the line out audio port and not just the head phone audio out port. The Dell DJ only has the head phone out port and no line out audio port. Line out is a better way of feeding a signal to a home stereo than the head phone out port. Which is why I added it to the extensive list of technically superiorities of the iPod over the Dell DJ. The head phone out port is subject to the volume you have set on your player. Where as line out audio is always set to the optimum audio level with minimal amplification distortions etc. This is why the Apple iPod can deliver the best sound possible this side of optical digital transfer. So I call it "pristine" when compared to the Dell DJ. Now AAC and MP3 are lossy audio formats. So I could crank it up a bit by using the Apple loss-less codec and get as "pristine" as possible with analog signals. But the Dell DJ falls short of the Apple iPod on this one no matter how you slice it.

I have tried to get Chris to answer my questions. Questions that are asking about technical abilities of the Dell DJ compared to the Apple iPod. I think the ability to play audio books / magazines, do book mark transfers, play loss-less audio with half the HD space, the dock port etc. I do not think these are just additional features that few people use. I think these are some the technical specs that show the Apple iPod is superior.

And I really do not care which one is better. If Chris was not so outrageous I would not have posted. If Chris did not say "look at teh tech specs" I would not be so big on the tech specs. But I have posted them. And it would seem that Chris has chosen not to post his list or answer my questions.

Thanks for the 2 cents. I hope I have explained why the Apple iPod is better at feeding your home stereo with the analog sound signal.

Bill Maxwell

10/22/2004 5:32 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hey Bill, I can't beleave you are still going at it man. You won, you won ok. Get some fresh air man, meet some real people. I love my iPod also but wow you are the ultimate fan. Apple should bring you on board!

10/25/2004 11:28 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hey I have my little cron job shell script which tells me there's a new posting and I wanted explain to MW what was going on. So it's really a minimal time on my part to do this. I'll give Chris until Friday to post a retort. Then that is it for me.

But I do agree that it looks like game set and match to the iPod :-)

But your right. Now is the time to enter the final frontier. Human contact :-)

Bill Maxwell

10/25/2004 11:40 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

By the way, chris says that the cheapest ipod is 300 bucks, thats not true, its 99 bucks, and the mini is 199.

6/28/2005 4:21 AM  
Anonymous Peter said...

I am probably the only other person besides these Chris and Bill characters that read the entire argument. I love when people get so worked up about the little things in life. I must say, though, that Chris seems to be a slightly more normal human being than shady McBillington. Obviously you can't complete an argument over things that cannot be compared and it was proven in your endless blither blather. I just bought a Dell 30 GB DJ for $214 while an Ipod mini which holds 4 GB costs $199. Who even cares about the minute tech specs when you are getting a crap load of space.

Lastly, I'd like to say to Bill Nancy Maxwell that putting little smiley faces in your writing is a tad feminine.

Check out my site biotches.

(Chris I'd appreciate it if you linked to my site since I am the peacemaker here.)

7/15/2005 1:38 AM  

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