REVIEW: iPod Nano, 1st Generation were once more very kind to send us over a 1st Generation iPod Nano for the purposes of this review. Look inside for more info and find out what are its differences with the new generation Nano.

The iPod Nano is a well known product and has been reviewed to death. But it's such a successful and insprirational product that it's worth the time to re-introduce it: It was first introduced over a year ago as a replacement to the iPod Mini. The 1st Generation iPod Nano came with 2 or 4 GBs of storage. We tested a black 4 GB model, refurbished. All the necessary cables were included in the box but the screen came with a small scratch. In the box we found the player, a quick start guide, earphones with 3 pairs of ear-cushions, a carrying case, an iPod Nano dock adapter and a USB 2.0 cable.

The Nano differs from its predesessor, the Mini, in that it doesn't support Firewire syncing (but it can still charge via such a cable), it does not have the small feature-connector next to the headphone jack and it does not come with an AC/DC adapter. On the other hand, it is much smaller, it has a color screen, updated software with more features and longer battery life.

The Nano can playback AAC (16 to 320 Kbps), protected AAC, MP3 (16 to 320 Kbps), MP3 VBR, Audible (formats 2, 3 and 4), Apple Lossless, WAV and AIFF. It also supports podcasts, audiobooks and Picture-viewing with slideshow support. It also supports playlists, sorting via artist, album, song, song-writer, genre, alarms, calendaring, contacts, shuffling and repeating, over 10 languages, EQ and backlight control.

On the 4 GB flash-based storage you should be able to stick about 1000 songs, or, over 25,000 176x132 jpeg pictures. The patented click-wheel navigation makes the Nano very easy to navigate and use, while the battery can deliver a generous 14 hours of playback at 50% of volume. Our iPod came with firmware version 1.2.1 but upgrading the firmware to 1.3 is an easy process via iTunes 7. Sound quality is really impressive, as always, on all iPods.

Compared to its big brother, the iPod Video, the Nano can not play purchased games or playback video and does not have TV-out capabilities. Additionally, the iPod Video users hard drives instead of flash memory, 30 or 80 GBs.

There is no question that the iPod Nano is a very good, successful product. sells this refurbished black iPod Nano for $185. What we have to ask ourselves though is that if it makes sense to buy this product or opt for the 2nd Generation 4GB Nano at Apple's web site which is sold for $199 instead -- a difference of only $14. Here are the differences between the and Apple's models:

Pros for the 1st Generation Nano:

- Earphones come with 3 pairs of ear-cushions

- Faster to sync (faster internal flash)

- Rounded-corner design

- Protective case bundled

- Black color

Pros for the Apple Store's 2nd Generation Nano:

- Brand new, not refurbished

- 1 year warranty instead of 90 days

- Gapless playback (ideal for live and classical music)

- Ability to engrave the back of your iPod

- 40% brighter screen

- 24 hours of battery life

- "Search" capability

- Non-scratchable surface

- Slightly thinner

- Slightly less heavy

- Concave center button

- Voice recording capability via accessory

In our opinion, it does not make sense to buy the reviewed 4 GB Nano compared to the new generation Nano. must slash the price down to about $150 to make it worthwhile to go for it instead. The only practical reason that could make someone to opt for the 1st Generation Nano compared to the 2nd Generation is only if the customer already owns or needs a special accessory that only fits the 1st Generation Nano (the second Generation Nano is not accessory-compatible with the first one), or, if he/she wants to run iPodLinux on it. Otherwise, it is not a very wise buy, even if the product is actually very good and delivers the goods.