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Using an iHome speaker with your old iPod

When I bought my iPad last year I figured that it would replace my old iPod, which is a classic. I got a nice stand for the iPad and set it up, and it works great, but really, mostly what I like to do is listen to audiobooks and music. And although the iPad is great for stuff like video and surfing the web, when it comes to ease of use, an iPod is better for audio. Plus I also have 160 Gigs of space on the iPod, so I have no need to pay for an iTunes Match account in order to listen to my music. When I travel, of course, I'll take the iPad, and it will give me everything from Netflix to my iTunes movies. But at home I found that I was using the iPad mostly to listen to audiobooks and music, which it can do, but that's not really what an iPad is for.

Then I started using the iPod again, hooked up to an old portable iHome speaker (not pictured). I like to carry my music out to the backyard, and I found that carrying something that was kind'a like a small cookie sheet (the iPad) was just weird. It was just plain easier to carry my iPod outside and use the portable speaker. But there was a problem with that. I would have to remember to take the iPod back into my other room and plug it in to charge it. That was so ten years ago that I decided to invest in the iHome speaker that you see there. Here are my first impressions:

• It sounds great. As good as the little tiny iHome speaker was, this is much better. And it has better volume control, because, well, the other speaker didn't have any volume control. It's kind'a weird having volume control both on the iPod and on the speaker, but it's better than not having it.

• It charges the iPod. I've been using rechargeable stuff for a long time, and I try to remember to plug things in the recharge them, but really, why not use a device that charges it while it sits there? Of course, it only charges when it's plugged in, but it's not like I'm gonna leave this sitting on the patio all night.

• It's portable. I've only had it plugged in for about an hour now, and it's supposed to charge for six hours for you move it, but the idea is that you can unplug it and carry it out to the patio.

As you can see, this is how I entertain myself while I eat. This is, of course, a very selfish system, designed for one. But that's OK. I have other stuff in the living room for when I'm entertaining guests. But this is my little corner. I put the plate there so you could see the scale.

OK, the real test of this will be how easy it is to carry outside. I'll let you know in about five hours. I have admit that it looked smaller in the photo on the Walmart page, but I didn't bother reading the dimensions, which would have helped. The photo showed an iPad on it (which is ridiculous, as the built-in speaker on an iPad is excellent). I think I'm going to like this!

Update the next day. As I had imagined, even though the speaker is portable, it's too much of a hassle to move it around. Oddly enough, they have put the plug on the bottom of the device, so you have to turn it upside-down to unplug it. Of course, the iPod is just sitting there, so you don't want to tilt it, or it will fall off. The speaker also seems to have some issues with the volume changing, not sure what that is, when you plug and unplug it. So I will keep it on my table, and when I want to go outside I will go back to using my little tiny iHome speaker.