From left to right: 3G iPod, 5G iPod, 2G Nano, 3G iPhone.
Not shown are a 2nd generation shuffle that I was happy to lose to the washing machine, and the great 1st generation shuffle that my mother owns.
So which iPod was best? The answer depends on use of course, but it's not entirely obvious.
- Absolute worst: The second generation shuffle and its proprietary charging and sync connector. Yech.
- Best music player: A close race between the 5G iPod (#2) and the Nano. They're both great music players; the scroll wheel and interface features make them much better than the iPhone for listening to podcasts. If I had to choose one I'd favor the 3G for its additional video features and greater capacity.
- Most versatile charging and accessory compatibility: Nano and 5G iPod both charge with Firewire, USB and all auto accessories. Yech to my iPhone.
- Most powerful device: Ok, the iPhone is good for something.
- Fastest sync: I swear the Firewire 3G is 3 times faster at sync than anything else. I really miss Firewire.
- Best accessory range: The old 3G iPhone had a special connector for adding on radio, recording, broadcast etc. It came with a small remote control cable.
- Best suited to a person with visual and motor limitations: The first generation shuffle.