The v1.1 iPod firmware (released Mar 20) is wonderful.
* MP3 decoder's low whine is completely fixed -- totally gone. (The iPod, which previously had the best s/n ratio for wav & aif of any portable device I know of, now has it for mp3 as well.)
* Handles low bitrate files very well now.
* Scrub wheel function gives quick access to any part of a track.
* Plus more.
I was worried that I might have to purchase new hardware some day to get these improvements; but here they are in a free firmware update. It's like a new machine for free. Fabulous. Now all we need is multiple bookmarks and it will be perfect.