Monday, December 26, 2005

iPod utility on the cheap

I just bought a 5G Video iPod last month and I love it. What I don't love is the high price of iPod accessories. $30 for a rubber protective sleeve is just too much. I have also discovered that some accessories can be used in multiple ways. I keep all this stuff in a small carry bag.

- silicone sleeve - purchased from PC Microstore for $10 with free shipping.

- Belkin Auto Kit - The Belkin iPod Auto Kit is one of the most useful accessories I own. It is basically a car lighter adapter that allows the iPod to be charged and provides a 1/8 line out which connects to a cassette adapter of FM transmitter. The line out signal is amplified and adjustable via a volume control.

- 12 accessory adapter - This plugs into an AC outlet, and any 12V powered device with a car lighter plug can be plugged into it. Rather than buying both auto and home accessories, plug the auto accessories into the accessory adapter. Also works well for cell phone accessories

- cassette adapter - connects the iPod line out to a cassette deck

- passive portable speakers - I have a pair of passive Sony speakers which work fine. Target has the Sony SRS-P7's for about $10

- AV cable - I bought a camcorder adapter cable from eBay for $6. Since the wiring is different, I marked the RCA plugs with the correct iPod "polarity

These items can be combined in a variety of ways :

AC powered iPod "stereo" - plug the Belkin car kit into the 12v accessory adapter, then plug the passive speakers into the Belkin car kit. Volume is adjustable via the Belkin car kit.

self powered iPod stereo - plug the passive speakers directly into the iPod

iPod charger - the Ipod does not come with an AC adapter, so plug the Belkin car kit into the accessory adapter

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