The iPod mini seems to have a design issue with its jack:
Any time I touched mini, she would scream with unbelievably and horribly distorted sound. Whether I touched her elegant click-wheal, beautifully curved anodized body, or her shiny white bottom, mini would curse and scream. If left alone, mini would occasionally come back to her senses and sing in her clean voice, but slightest touch would bring back the darkest side of her.
There is also a big thread going on at iPodlounge.
That's exactly what I experienced last month at the Apple Store in Soho -- and I wonder why Apple let those faulty mini exposed to their clients, it certainly did not make me want one. One can suspect that the current absence from the shelves of the mini is related to Apple being busy fixing this problem more than facing high demand.
Are we back to the bad old days where wisdom mandated that one avoid the first generation of Apple products? Is this a consequence of this permanent quest for the cheapest outsourcing deal in manufacturing?