Re: iPod for Birding

To: Dean Cutten <>
Subject: Re: iPod for Birding
From: Tim Dolby <>
Date: Tue, 25 Jul 2006 17:21:42 +1000
Hi all,

Without wanting to advertise the iPod - I can also vouch for them as an MP3s
bird call system.

I?ve easily managed to download from CD and from online approx. 1000 Australian
bird calls. In fact with 6GB memory, there?s pretty much room for all the calls
of all the worlds birds!

I see that there are two real benefits with the iPod system I use:

1. The ease that you can play & access music file (read key bird species) i.e.
it?s literally a matter of seconds to access any target species. You can also
easily scroll back and forward within a single bird call.

2., and just as important, the ease that you can access & use and amplified bird
calls. To do this I use a FM radio transmitter (called ?XtremeMac Airplay?,
about $50, do a Google search to find) which tunes into any FM radio frequency
(such as 88.7, or 102.8, or whatever). For effective bird playback, you need an
iPod, the Airplay adapter, and a decent, small but WELL amplified radio FM
Radio. It should also be able to use batteries, so you can go into the field.

The Airplay adapter can actually be tuned into any FM radio, so you can play it
through the car radio, obviously useful for learning your call and call playback
- or you can even play bird call through the FM radio at your local pub! A
Barking Owl usually does the trick!

Finally, make sure you buy the car charger which usually comes free with the
Airplay adapter.

Sure beats the old tapes.



Dean Cutten wrote:

> I would just like to follow on with the recent thread on the usefullness of
> PDAs  in birding with reference to an iPod to store bird songs and calls. I
> recently bought the Apple nano iPod with 4GB of memory to use in the field
> to allow one to pull up a bird song or call to confirm or otherwise the ID
> of a bird. A particular bird species can be located very quickly in the menu
> list where the songs can be stored in 'playlists'. I have put 5 of the BOCA
> CD's on the iPod creating a playlist for each CD (and still have plenty of
> free memory). This can be done through the software program 'iTunes' (that
> comes with the iPod) which is loaded onto a PC and connects with the iPod
> via
> the USB. If one wants to edit out any speech there is a free program called
> 'Audacity' that can be downloaded. The bird song files need to be in MP3
> format for this program to work. Conversion to MP3 from the CD format is
> done in iTunes. If broadcasting is required in the field the iPod can be
> connected to a small active speaker system. (It comes with small earphones.)
> The convenience of having all the songs stored in such a small unit makes it
> a very attractive unit for birding. It is possible some songs might have
> subtle changes made to them after being converted to digital format but I
> think these would not be very extensive.
> Dean Cutten
> Victor Harbor,  SA
> Australia
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