There is an argument that follows the lines that the Apple iPod was a successful device amongst fans of Apple fans but it would never have reached mass appeal if the software hadn’t been changed so users of Microsoft Windows computers could synchronise with it.

No matter what your opinion, Apple is now synonymous with media players, so it’s no wonder that while Roxio Crunch was originally released for Apple Mac machines, this latest edition can also be used by Windows. It allows you to take all the multimedia content on your hard drive and convert it over to iPod suitable viewing.

The key word with this product is simplicity, as Roxio has effectively taken a lot of the thought process out of compressing and converting data over. This can be seen in the simple and clean interface. The left-hand side of the window allows you to choose your source, whether that’s on your hard drive or on an attached device – even your optical drive. This is all straightforward, as is the right-hand side of the screen that allows you to choose the format you wish to convert to dependent on the device you have. You can then choose the quality of the final compression, from quick and dirty to high quality, which takes up more space.

The final decision is whether to send the file to iTunes or straight to your chosen device. In terms of ease of use, it’s as easy as that. Before you can copy anything over you’ll be reminded about the legal ramifications of copying anything you don’t own the copyright to and as will all similar tools, you can’t actually copy protected content.

Naturally, there is native support for QuickTime file formats but you also find support for non-QuickTime formats that work with other devices other than Apple’s own, such as DivX ,MPEG2 and DVD-Video.

Price when reviewed:

Roxio Crunch is great if you own one of the divergent range of Apple players and as this is the prime market, you’d be a fool not to consider getting a copy.

If you own an alternative, there are a host of equally impressive, but cheaper, options on the market.

Ultimately, it comes down to whether you own an iPod and like to make life as easy for yourself as possible. If the answer is yes to either of these, then go for Crunch.