O, Apple, unbreak my heart...
August 28, 2010 1:39 PM   Subscribe

I have lost my beloved ipod Shuffle! Will the newer model do the tricks I want it to do?

So, I have had a great time with my little shuffle. It was the first model they made, the little postage stamp size guy. I used it everywhere, but mostly in my car and on my bike.

I lost the little scamp this weekend at a cursed conference, and I need to replace it asap. I have long been eyeballing the new Shuffle, with it's neat little voice-over feature and tiny size/larger capacity. I want it baaad.

Thing is, I mostly use the Shuffle in my car. I have an old car, with only a tape deck, and I use one of those hilarious tape adapters that just plugs right into the headphone jack. With these new Shuffles, the only controls seem to be on the headphone cable. So clearly, that won't work.

Is there any method anyone can come up with? I can not wrap my head around how to make this work!
posted by broadway bill to Technology (13 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
You can use a headphone adapter, like this. (No endorsement, just an answer)
posted by ALongDecember at 1:43 PM on August 28, 2010

You can still buy the old ones, refurbished. I shun the new ones for they are vile.
posted by elizardbits at 1:44 PM on August 28, 2010 [2 favorites]

the newer shuffles don't seem to be as popular as the previous generation that you have. There might be some workaround, i'm not sure, but the good news is that the new ipod line-up for the year is going to be announced on Wednesday, so you'll have some different options to choose from then (plus maybe another week or two depending on when they ship).

Also, it's pretty easy to find refurbed shuffles from the previous generation for about $40. Those things last forever, and should perform like your old one for years to come.
posted by bluejayk at 1:46 PM on August 28, 2010

Response by poster: elizardbits, why all the shunning? I have not used a new-gen Shuffle, so I am interested in hearing reasons not to like the little fella.

I have looked into an older, refurbed replacement. Thing is, paying that much for a refurbed one with a smaller capacity when I could get a newer, bigger one for pennies more seems a bit off. What am I missing?
posted by broadway bill at 1:51 PM on August 28, 2010

The apple store refurb page doesn't seem to have ANY shuffles up at the moment. I do see a few of the 2nd gen (like yours was) on eBay, though, but the prices all seem a bit high.

By the way - the postage stamp one wasn't the first gen, it was the second. The first was a little stick with a USB port right on the machine. It looked like a larger flash drive.
posted by SNWidget at 1:52 PM on August 28, 2010

You might want to hold off your purchase until Wednesday. Apple has an event scheduled for September 1 which will almost certainly include new iPods.
posted by nathan_teske at 1:57 PM on August 28, 2010

Hmm--is it a first gen like this one? I've had one sitting around for years that I haven't used. I think it's a 2 gig. I keep meaning to sell it, but it doesn't feel worth the trouble. I'd be willing to send it to you gratis if you want, to help a fellow Mefite, as it's just been collecting dust for like five years, assuming I can find it. Shoot me a MeMail.
posted by PhoBWanKenobi at 2:08 PM on August 28, 2010

Best answer: I was in your exact position a number of months ago, and bought a new one. I now love my new shuffle, and while the headphone change can be a bit of a pain, I really like the new controls now that I'm used to them.

The good news is non-Apple headphones and adapters like AlongDecember mentioned are getting easier to find - I recently replaced my iPod standard headphones and had no problem finding a pair that I liked.
posted by scrute at 2:26 PM on August 28, 2010

I haaaaaate the shuffle without buttons. I like the headphone control, it is useful when I am walking, riding my bike or working out, but there are many situations when I just. Want. A goddamned. Button.

My shuffle headphones broke recently. Without buying new ones, my shuffle is a useless piece of junk, too small even to be a paperweight. I am pissed I gave apple any money for it.

Go with a refurbed shuffle. Trust me.
posted by pazazygeek at 3:04 PM on August 28, 2010

Wait until Wednesday. Rumor has it the next-gen Nano is touch-screen and Shuffle-sized.
posted by Lazlo at 4:05 PM on August 28, 2010

Best answer: I received a third generation shuffle as a gift but dislike like it intensely. The control scheme, while more functional than I had expected, is still markedly worse than what you get with ordinary buttons. The real deal breaker, though, is the fact of being completely reliant on compatible earbuds (of which there is only a small and generally unappealing range of choices). As one user points out above, if you have any problem whatsoever with your earbuds--they may break (I'm a runner, and my shuffle remote went on the fritz after exposure to sweat), or you may not like the fit or the sound quality--the entire player is useless. I've opted to simply continue using my 1st-generation shuffle.

As others have said, you could look around for older models for sale. Alternately, you might consider a player like the Sansa Clip; it's not as slick as the shuffle, but it's a good value and has more features (including an FM-tuner, as well as an actual screen).
posted by Maxa at 5:05 PM on August 28, 2010

I see everyone else has outlined pretty much all my reasons for loathing the new shuffles quite well. The first thing to invite my outrage was the headphone thing. The regular apple headphones are such miserable pieces of shit, and the thought of having to pay almost the same price as the shuffle itself to buy an adapter to use real headphones made me ...unsound. IDK if the headphone adapters are cheaper nowadays but tbh it would not change my mind if they were.

Anyway. The apple store gets the refurbished 1st gen shuffles every month or so. I buy one or two every time they do, even though I hate giving money to apple, such is my irrational love for the old shuffle. Newegg has them occasionally as well.
posted by elizardbits at 6:39 PM on August 28, 2010

Hah, hal_c_on, I came here to say the same thing. [TUAW info on new Shuffle]
posted by komara at 2:15 PM on September 1, 2010

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