IPod nano now has a built-in video camera that lets you spontaneously shoot video wherever you are. iPod nano is making rock more glam with a polished anodized aluminum finish and a larger screen for your viewing pleasure. And making music mixes has never been easier.
To distinguish itself from previous models, the latest Nano includes a slightly larger 2.2-inch screen (up from 2 inches) and a glossy, polished aluminum finish that one CNET editor described as looking like a Christmas tree ornament. However, the easiest way to tell that you're holding a 5th generation iPod Nano is to flip it over.
The Nano's video camera
Of all the bells and whistles Apple added to the fifth-generation iPod Nano, the video camera is the most notable. Placed on the back of the Nano in the lower right corner (or lower left, if you're looking at the back), the small, bead-size lens brings yet another convenient and useful feature to an already impressive product. We're not thrilled with the camera's video quality, the location of the lens behind your hand, or the inability to take still photos, but it's difficult to criticize when you consider the Nano's relatively low price.
A comparable, VGA-resolution video Ipod camera such as the Flip Mino has a street price of $130 and includes only a fraction of the features found on the Nano.
Unlike its fourth-generation sibling, the latest Nano has a bead-size camera lens on its lower left backside. The lens runs flush with the Nano's aluminum body, but if the worn-and-scratched back of our fourth-generation Nano is any indication, we advise investing in a protective case to keep the camera in good working order.
The user interface of the 5th Generation Nano remains almost entirely unchanged with the exception of a few new menu items for the video camera, FM radio, and fitness features. The larger 2.2-inch screen can now display up to 12 lines of menu text (up from 10) and the Now Playing screen lists artist, album, and title information in three bolder, more readable lines at the top of the screen.
All of the features from last year's Nano have migrated to the fifth-generation model, including music, video, and podcast playback, as well as extras such as photos, calendar, games, alarms, stopwatch, contacts, notes, and clocks. If that weren't enough, Apple has upped the ante with an integrated pedometer, Genius Mix support, voice recording, a built-in speaker, video camera, and an FM radio.
The iPod Nano's ties with iTunes also brings fantastic media features, including standard, smart, and Genius playlists; the latter creates instantaneous 25 song playlists based around the characteristics of any of your favorite tunes. Aside from turning playlist creation into a simple, one-click affair, Genius playlists can be created directly on the iPod Nano, eliminating the hassle of creating and syncing playlists through iTunes.
Another advantage of the iPod/iTunes relationship is the capability to download and transfer movies, TV shows, music videos, video podcasts, and other video content with minimal fuss. The Nano also handles iTunes-rented movies, many priced as low as $0.99, but typically costing about $3. Other welcome features on the Nano's video player include support for chapter markers, playback auto-resume, video podcasts, and subtitles.
There are plenty of nice things to say about the Nano's video camera. First, the Nano's camera is easy to use, letting you to jump right into recording after only two clicks from the main menu. Its 640x480-pixel resolution and MP4/H.264 video recording format (bit rates range between 2,500Kbps and 2,800Kbps) works natively in iTunes and most video playback software as well as video streaming Web sites including YouTube, Flickr, and Facebook.
With up to 8GB of storage, the Nano 8gb can store an impressive 16 hours of recorded video, and as far as convenience goes, you'll have a difficult time finding a smaller, lighter video camera than the iPod Nano.
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