If music is all you need to while away long-haul hours, try the smaller, lighter Apple iPod. It comes in three handy sizes—10 GB ($300, 2,500 songs), 20 GB ($400, 5,000 songs) and a new 40-GB ($500, 10,000 songs) mini-monster. Copying tracks over to the iPod is easy and almost automatic. A humbler travel buddy is the iRiver SlimX iMP-550 ($180). It looks like a regular portable CD player, but also plays CD-R-burned MP3s, each of which can hold 11 hours of music—enough to entertain you halfway across the world.
Had enough of lame inflight entertainment? The AV340 video and music player from French firm Archos might just be the answer to mile-high boredom. Its 40-GB hard disk can easily store 30 feature films to watch on its 9.7-cm color screen, and still leave room for a few thousand MP3 tracks. All this in a package that weighs just 0.35 kg. The Archos ($1,000) can record straight from TV or hi-fi, so you don't have to waste time compressing audio and video files on your computer. And when you land, you can hook it up to your hotel's TV or stereo and play your downloads.