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  • [GIVEAWAY] The iPod Nano Watch Showdown

    Everybody's heard Jobs tell the story of an Apple board member who saw the new Nano with the clock app and wanted to wear it as a wrist watch. Forget that he probably already had a perfectly good iPhone in his pocket and two clock displays in his BMW.

    That's not the point really. Today, a watch is much more of a statement of fashion than a necessity for being on time.

    And what greater fashion statement is there for an Apple-lover than strapping on a slick square of multi-touch goodness that is the 6th generation iPod Nano?

    So today we put to test 3 models of iPod Nano watch cases from two different manufacturers:
    1: A stainless steel model called 'The Paradox' which is just ending it their Kickstarter campaign (on Thurs. June 2!),
    2: The aluminum 'Lunatik'
    3: The plastic 'TikTok' from MINIMAL founder Scott Wilson

    We received a prototype model of The Paradox and were told that the design is pretty refined but they're testing material finishes and anodized colors like black in shiny and sandblasted versions. Also, the band pictured will probably not be the final product. Still, what we did see was very promising.

    What you get in The Paradox is a fully-encased Nano enclosure (except for the face) that should offer the very best protection of the 3 designs we tested. We really were impressed by the exterior buttons and a very cool flip-out dock connector cover.

    The Paradox is a really cool design - definitely the most conventional looking watch of the bunch. We can't fully comment on the strap since this is a prototype but we can say that the strap is not as wide as the LunaTik or TikTok. When you look at the proportions, this leaves The Paradox with a slightly larger case and slightly thinner strap. Seriously though, if you'd like to see this thing get to market AT ALL, hit their Kickstarter page and make a Pledge.

    The best comparison is between The Paradox and the LunaTik. The LunaTik people have an excellent video showing how the case comes apart to install the Nano LunaTik Instructions, Assembly & Tips on Vimeo so we won't go into much detail here. It's a little more trouble than the two screw back-removal of The Paradox but really, both of these options aren't going to give you very quick access to the Nano. So if that's something that's important to you, then read on for the TikTok.

    The LunaTik is "forged from aerospace grade aluminum then machined via CNC and hand-crafted into its final form." Nice. There is that seam down the middle but it actually adds to the industrial look. Fit and finish are fantastic. The Nano slides in so tightly that you'll want to be sure there's no sand or other grit that could scratch the edges as you assemble or disassemble it. It's that tight. Sometimes I had a little trouble getting the halves to match perfectly (like in the picture) but the instructional video says to just push the pieces opposite ways... easier for them.

    For protecting the Nano, The LunaTik is right in the middle. The dock connector and buttons are recessed but exposed.

    As for comfort, the band is extraordinary. Very thick, very comfortable texture and the little nub that holds the slack end of the band is an unexpectedly cool touch. Overall, It's an elegant looking presentation that you could expect from a watch costing upwards of $200.

    Just as elegant, is the TikTok. If you want quick, pop-out access to your Nano, then this is your case. It offers the least protection of the three but all you have to do is flex the case while pulling on the edges of the Nano and it's out. The plastic material looks a lot like metal and flexes just right. The mount is pretty ingenious and I don't see how the Nano could come out accidentally.

    This case boasts something the other two cannot: headphone plug access. Neither The Paradox nor the LunaTik will allow as wide a range of headphone plugs. Stock iPod earbuds work just fine with all three but once you move up to something with a thicker plug (such as Shure e2's), you can't plug them in unless you have the TikTok. But please, just don't.

    Do what you want, but I'm just going to say it - if you wear headphones plugged into a Nano watch you're going to get beat up.

    So can you wear an iPod Nano on your wrist daily as a practical means of telling time, or even just as a fashion statement?

    Immediately you'll resign yourself to a few things:
    1) a Nano watch will NOT be water resistant
    2) a Nano watch will get banged up depending on the protection the case offers
    3) a Nano watch only shows the time 1.5 seconds after you press the wake button (LED watch fanatics couldn't care less)
    4) this will be a large watch but you won't really care
    5) random women in elevators will notice your cool watch
    6) random women in elevators will notice that you're a total geek for wearing a Nano as a watch

    You may be surprised at how big the Nano is once you get it inside a watch case. Not ridiculously big, but based on tests with my average sized arm and a friend's, the encased Nano is nearly the full width of our wrists. And I would say both of us are about medium-size guys around 170 lbs.

    The Paradox seems the bulkier of the three - which isn't surprising since it offers surround protection. For my wrist, it's just a bit much. Nearly the same with the LunaTik, however it's a 'flashy big' in the style of big fashion watches from Fossil and Diesel (the Diesel above is a pretty thick watch already). The case I kept going back to and wearing each day was the TikTok. I really like how it shows off the Nano's color BUT I dread the day that I smack it accidentally in a doorway or something and damage the iPod.

    The Paradox will run $79, while the LunaTik runs $79.95 and the TikTok is $39.95. AND we have a GIVEAWAY! Comment below and tell us what you think of these and we'll send out a LunaTik and a TikTok each to a random commenter! We'll also be sending a Paradox to a random commenter once they go into production, assuming the project gets funded. Total of 3 items to give away!

    Review by Larry Wiezycki. Larry works in TV and media production as part of an Investigative Team for a consumer advocacy law firm, James-Hoyer. Hes received 4 Emmy awards and has been an avid iOS and OS X user for years.
    This article was originally published in forum thread: [GIVEAWAY] The iPod Nano Watch Showdown started by Kyle Matthews View original post
    Comments 361 Comments
    1. 808mp5's Avatar
      808mp5 -
      I like them all. I can't even remember the last time I used a wrist watch. The last time was probably before cell phones became mainstream. But I would rock one of these.
    1. Musicrocks182's Avatar
      Musicrocks182 -
      I really like the design of the LunaTik. I have been debating getting one now for a couple weeks with my iPod Nano. Cant decide. Hopefully the decision will be made for me by MMi.
    1. Hosko817's Avatar
      Hosko817 -
      I think they are kinda cool. I wonder if somebody can incorporate my iPhone 4 into a belt buckle?
    1. g4geniuses's Avatar
      g4geniuses -
      This is just extraordinary and brilliant. The casing adds a touch of elegance to the already beautiful design of the nano. Kudos to the all included in the awesome design. This just shows.. With a great product comes great accessories. And this is where they become 1 in the same. #APPLECCESSORIES

      @Kyle Excellent post as always +10
    1. Qiqq3r's Avatar
      Qiqq3r -
      Wow you guys just managed to show me an even better watch than the LunaTic
      I've been looking at buying an iPod Nano just to be able to wear it in the LunaTic, and now I see the Paradox which looks even better. Any of these cases would be glued to my arm until they are completely worn out (in years and years that is).

      But this giveaway just completely caught my eye since I've been looking at this for the last month, it's just been a matter of the price for me.
    1. santos2201's Avatar
      santos2201 -
      I like the Paradox!!!
    1. g4geniuses's Avatar
      g4geniuses -
      This is just extraordinary and brilliant. It adds a touch of elegance to the already beautiful design of the
      nano. Kudos to all involved in the design. This just shows.. with an great apple product (all of them), comes
      great accessories. This product makes them one in the same. #APPLECCESSORIES.

      @Kyle. Great post as always. +10
    1. Lefty126's Avatar
      Lefty126 -
      They all look good! I'd like to see a leather band sometime in the future...
    1. dangerousandre's Avatar
      dangerousandre -
      The LunaTik is so beast
    1. jmaderosk8r's Avatar
      jmaderosk8r -
      It would be nice if they made leather and pleather straps. I will look into these and im sure ppl will definately mod the clock so you can always have a different display.
    1. bplayabball's Avatar
      bplayabball -
      This...IS REALLY COOL@!! I hope I win what an awesome "watch"~!!
    1. ecksel02's Avatar
      ecksel02 -
      I think they all look nice and personally the size doesn't look to big at all...well unless those pictures are of Brock Lesnar wearing them

      Also, I'm wondering since these are in fact Nano's how come there's no pics of it displaying anything other than the time???
    1. gaurav_rwl's Avatar
      gaurav_rwl -
      Really nice. I always needed a digital watch. I wouldn't mind getting any of these as all look great! Hope I win.
    1. Cdbjeez33's Avatar
      Cdbjeez33 -
      i would love to have the diesel and the black one that glows in blue i think this was a great idea i wonder if they play music either way its still cool two thumbs up apple
    1. Ramps77's Avatar
      Ramps77 -
      Very cool tech. I love all three!!! they all have something to offer. I would get a small blu-tooth adapter so that you can take advantage of having your ipod on your wrist!!
    1. luvmytj's Avatar
      luvmytj -
      I love these Nano watch cases! I have no real need for a Nano, but these cases may make me run out & buy one. The surround cases make them a bit larger than I like, but they are just so cool! I must have one!
    1. therealjig11's Avatar
      therealjig11 -
      The Paradox is now at its funding goal, but there are still 30 hours left to pre-order your own Paradox kit to GUARANTEE you receive one (modmyi is only giving out one) at the cheaper kickstarter price (retail price will be higher)
    1. confucious's Avatar
      confucious -
      What sort of an idiot would wear a nano as a watch?

      Apart from me, obviously.
    1. Moose0704's Avatar
      Moose0704 -
      Those are the best looking watches I ahve ever seen ;-)
    1. kyvos's Avatar
      kyvos -
      Very solid review, Larry. The Paradox would be my first choice because I love its design. I visited their KickStarter page and see they have great pledge deals from allgeekeverything. I'd definitely pledge $300 if I had the money, just for that Limited Edition Titanium Paradox. The best I could do is pledge $70 but i'm sure every dollar counts even after they've already passed their $15,000 goal. I'm looking forward to the getting my own paradox kit in the near future.