For several years I used an NEX
IIe MP3 player either on my belt or the strap of my tank bag
with earbuds. This worked pretty well since it used CF
cards for storage, could be operated with gloves on and
would last well over a day on a pair of alkaline AA
battereis - and it only cost me about $10 on Fleabay.
BUT, it wasn't waterproof so I'd have to stash it in a
jacket pocket when riding in the rain.
Then, while surfing The Internet
one day, I stumbled across the H2O Audio (now known as
X-1) model iN3 waterproof
case which is made for swimming with a 3rd Generation Ipod
Nano. At the time it was on sale for $24.99 so I
bought one. Then I scored a used 8GB 3rd Gen Nano on
Fleabay for about $35.
It came with a neoprene armband
holder which is OK for swimming I guess but was kind of
dorky and didn't hold up very well when I used it for
What I found worked much better
for me was a 1.5" wide Velcro strap strapped around my left
(clutch side) leg. To install it all I needed to do was
remove the two Phillips screws that hold the belt clip onto
the back of the case.
This straps it securely to my
left leg. (I also use it for my heated gear dual controller
when necessary.) The H2O Audio iN3 controls are very
easy to use even with thick winter gloves on. Since
I'm left-handed that makes it even easier to operate.
Unfortunately, the iN3 is no
longer in production or available for sale but can probably
be found on Fleabay if one is patient.
The one drawback of the iN3 is
that, for some reason, it gets the control ring of the Nano
dirty. I'm not sure why this is but it's a non-issue
for me as I only use my Nano for riding and I only paid $35
for it used on Fleabay.
I've used various earbuds with
this (Koss "The Plug", JVC Marshmallows, and several others)
as I experiment with different types of inexpensive earbuds.
The iN3 utilizes a standard stereo 3.5 mm jack so you can
use whatever earbuds work best for you. A couple of
caveats about earbuds:
* Given the design of the iN3's
headphone jack, you cannot use earbuds that have a 90 degree
* I've found that it puts some
strain on the wiring at the jack and eventually the earbuds
will fail. (Why I use inexpensive ones.) Therefore,
when touring, I usually have a spare set of earbuds in my
I'm currently using these
earbuds. I bought them a while ago and can't remember
what brand/model they are but they sound pretty good, are
comfortable and stay in my ears well.
The next pair of earbuds I plan
to try are these SkullCandy JIB Rasta ones:
I've never been a big fan of
Apple products but I must admit that I really do like my 3rd
Gen Nano. The battery in it easily lasts even the
longest day of riding and it recharges quickly from the bike
with a USB charger when I stop for the day.
I think iTunes is bloated
crapware so I use the freeware program
Copytrans Manager to manage the content on my Nano.
It's much easier to use and faster than using iTunes.
I occasionally backup my Nano
using the freeware program
Ipod Rescue. It's not very sophisticated but it's
free and it works.
© 2013 Drake Smith - Please do
not use or reproduce this elsewhere. Feel free to link
to it though.