Last summer, I purchased my fifth iPod Nano in as many years.

Besides being a costly endeavor, it’s also annoying as shit.

Now, this has continued to happen to yours truly solely because I’m an avid runner who needs musical motivation, and more specifically, because I steadfastly refuse to leave my iPod at home when I head out for a run during a torrential downpour.

Yes, I know, I’m a stubborn ass who refuses to learn their lesson.

Still though, for the price that Apple is charging for those damn things, one would think that at this point they’d have made them, y’know, waterproof.

Thankfully, Finis XtreaMP3 is the answer to my recurring problem.

The XtreaMP3 is a 1GB MP3 player that is waterproof to depths of 15 feet. It comes with a surprisingly sturdy neoprene armband, and specialized waterproof earbuds that are roughly 8 thousand times more comfortable than the stock Apple earbuds you get with an iPod . The XtreaMP3 is also USB compatible for charging, and more importantly, for syncing up your music via iTunes (the easiest route) or via the drag n’ drop process through Windows Explorer (the archaic way to go about it.)

So, while all of that sounds all well and good, you’re no doubt wondering (much like I was) is this thing ACTUALLY WATERPROOF?

Oh, indeed it is.

Seeing as the weather has been pretty nice around these parts as of late, I wasn’t able to put the XtreaMp3 through it’s paces during a rain filled run. So instead, I did the next best thing.

I wore it while taking a bath.

While sitting in my own tepid filth, I was pleased to hear that the sound quality of this unit was much better than I had anticipated. The highs are nice n’ bright, and there’s just the right amount of bass. When I did the old school fat kid move of holding my nose and dunking my head underwater, I’ll admit that I noticed some loss in sound quality, but that’s to be expected I’d think, considering that you’re underwater and all.

The XtreaMP3 is very well made, and it’s buttons and overall “feel” are anything but cheap. One can easily and quickly go to the next and previous tracks, and change volume, without fumbling all over the place, and losing your stride and or breaststroke.

That said though, the one major drawback I found with the XtreaMP3 was this. See, unlike an iPod Nano (or really, just about any high end MP3 player at this point)  there’s no digital display for you to scroll through, which can be highly annoying at times. Still though, the lack of a display screen does make the XstreaMP3 more streamlined, and it’s probably what makes it just so waterproof in the first place.

All in all, even though I am an admitted Apple dork, I’m a fan of the XtreaMP3, and would highly recommend it to any avid outdoorsy type who just needs their tunes while they’re swimming, snorkeling, white water rafting or running in the pouring rain. It’s rugged, built to take a beating, and sounds pretty damn good.

Retail price of the Finis XtreaMP3 is $149.95.

About The Author

Jim Murray is a Blast staff writer

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