Understanding the differences between an iPod and a standard MP3 player will make your shopping experience with PC Connection or Abt Electronics a breeze. Once you know the major flaws and perks to each style of personal music player, it will become clear that you may prefer one over the other. Each has distinct differences and characteristics. Here's a brief breakdown of the differences, and things to consider before making your personal music player.

What's the Difference?

An iPod is a special type of MP3 player. It belongs in the same family as other music players, but there are distinct differences that cause an iPod to become an electronic device all of it's own. The main differences are types of files that can be played, control features and memory cards.

  • Types of Files- An iPod can only play files downloaded through the iTunes service. An MP3 player can support other types of files that are available through a variety of downloading services. These files include .wma and .wav files. The iPod files are consistent and offer options that are difficult to find elsewhere. However, a standard MP3 player will have many different search sites offering a more broad search basis.
  • Control Features- The iPod features a special smooth motion selection wheel for your music. Other players may have wheels but they are not smooth flowing; they operate on a click basis. MP3 players may feature FM radio controls that you will not find on an iPod. However, there are many features that the iPod has that a standard MP3 player does not. These include playing video elements, surfing the web (some models) and playing games.
  • Memory Cards- It is important to note that an iPod does not have a removable memory card. This means that when you reach your memory maximum, you will have to delete old files in order to make room for new files. With a standard MP3 player, you can switch out memory cards to install a larger card.

Which Is Better?

It all depends on what you plan to do with your personal music player. You'll want to consider battery life and ideal uses for your device in considering your purchase. If you intend to use it only while running, for example, you're best suited with a small device and if you're not likely to view video while running, a standard MP3 player may suit you best.

If you are a person who enjoys FM radio stations, then an MP3 player will be a better choice for you. However, if you intend to view music videos, then an iPod will be better suited for you. Many customers prefer the streamline and simple user interface that the iPod offers. The device is so universal that it is easy to figure out and is quite intuitive.

Both devices come in a variety of colors, sizes, memory allotments, and price ranges. The elements to keep in mind will be features and ease of use.