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Ipod poor sound quality

Discussion in 'Headphones, Earphones & Portable Music' started by rodney_nz, Oct 6, 2005.

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  1. rodney_nz

    rodney_nz
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    Ive recently become an owner of a 4th gen 40gig Ipod. Im so happy to be able to carry 40 gig of music with me compared to my old 256 meg Iriver 590. I decided to invest in some Shure E3c after reading some good reviews. When I received them I was quite disappointed and they didnt seem all that much better than my old Sony EX71. I was so disappointed I felt that the E3c were faulty until I plugged them into my old Iriver MP3 player. The sound difference was amazing. This has lead me to think that something could be wrong with my Ipod. Ive played with all the sound settings but nothing seems to make a difference. Am I doing something wrong as the sound difference between the two MP3 players is amazing as the Ipod sounds dull and uninvolving.
    Any help would be appreciated
    cheers
     
  2. johann1979

    johann1979
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    I've not had the oppurtunity to listen to the iRiver but have listened to an iPod - and this is exactely why I opted for the HD5... the aneamic sound of the iPod is definitely dull and uninvolving... in my subjective view and opinion :(
     
  3. extremelydodgy

    extremelydodgy
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    By "Can I duplicate the Ultrabass settings on my iPod" or "can I set up a treble up, bass up, midrange down EQ curve on my iPod" it's not so easy. The iPod has preset EQ's and no additional sound "enhancement" effects so it may well sound duller to you. The sound without additional crap in the way is however better quality and more accurate. Flat would be a good way to describe the 'as is' sound of the iPod.. and many people are more used to a processed sound, and it's not helped by a loss of bass when using phones like the E3c due to a quirk in the iPods headphone out circuitry.


    The only thing you can do about it apart from change the player really is to amp the iPod. This will bring out the superior sound quality of the iPod pretty nicely even with the E3c and counter the loss of bass, at the expense of some portability (and a hit on the wallet). You'll need a Sendstation Pocketdock or equivalent, and a headphone amp. Xin makes highly portable amps, and a new range is shortly due out.
     
  4. johann1979

    johann1979
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    Although dodgy has given you a technically good remedy for your problem, you would have to decide for yourself whether you want to spend more money on a pocketdock and headphone amp. To me personally, this defies the point of having a small and portable mP3 player.

    Personally I would take it back - listen to what else there is on the market and then get another player instead, if you prefer it's sound. Get what sounds better to you, whether that sound is more processed or not - if the continious argument about the iPod's sound quality in these forums proved only one thing, it is that sound quality in DAPs is a subjective choice.

    For every one person that goes through the trouble to hook everything up to their computer and take measurements of everything, there are 20 others who simply put their fingers up and say: "We don't care, it sounds crap anyway"...

    Spend a bit more time here and you will see this sort of thing happens on both sides of the iPod argument... ;)
     
  5. lukey

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    Using e2c and e3c in conjunction with the ipod (well photo version anyway) is a waste of time, i've had both of these earphones and each time i have gone back to the sony ex71's instead due to fuller bass response. If you have a search for reviews on the e3c they will indicate that they are possibly the worst option to go for albeit they are expensive...sorry to give you that news!

    The sound problem, although I see it as a bass problem, with the ipod is a pain and it took me a few attempts to 'tweak' the settings so i could achieve some decent sound quality. I have found that a combination of using sony ex71 earphones, turning the 'sound check' function on, using the 'loudness' eq preset and up the input volume when importing to 100% ensures that you can achieve a good alround sound without distortion. Saying that, you really shouldnt have to go to such lengths but for me, the other features/facilities of the ipod and itunes outweigh the necessary tweaking to get the sound just right.
     
  6. extremelydodgy

    extremelydodgy
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    I presume you're not in the UK, rodney_nz?
     
  7. rodney_nz

    rodney_nz
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    Thanks for the comments, I guess I was caught up in the Ipod Hype when the Nano came out but didnt see the point in having a 4 gig when I could get a 40 gig 4th gen for not much more- so went for the 40 gig
    I think Ill put up with the sound quality and not bother with the extra amps etc as high capacity storage and portability are important to me.
    Unfortunatly didnt realise the E3c-Ipod combination wasnt so go, I guess I only paid 75 quid for them so I guess I cant be that disappointed.

    My understanding now is the Ipod headphone stage isnt the best but what would the sound quality be like running through dock and line out into my HiFi setup. My current setup although too long winded sounds pretty good to me. I run my PC with optical out into my Sony minidisc recorder DAC, then line out into my amp- gives alot better sound than through the line out of my PC. What would the standard line out of the Ipod be like compared to my current setup

    cheers,
    PS Im based in London
     
  8. Wig

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    Where is this input volume setting? I'm still new to iTunes.
     
  9. extremelydodgy

    extremelydodgy
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    Surprisingly good.
     
  10. lukey

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    if you go into 'file' then 'get info' you will see a sliding scale from 0 to 100%, if you put this to 100% it increases the volume tremendously, its a bit like removing the eu cap volume. Then click okay and it updates the songs you have highlighted with the new volume setting. Then compare the volume to the standard import volume of your songs and you will see what i mean :)
     
  11. gerbilly

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    Lukey I cannot believe you recommend these Sony earphones. I bought these because they fitted into the ear canal and I wanted something for when I went running. The bass is adequate but the treble is pitiful. :thumbsdow
    I dumped them immediately and went back to my Sennheiser MX500's.

    The fact they cost £34 made it even worse.

    I am very surprised that someone would have a complaint with the sound quality of the i-pod after they have used Go Pod to unlock the eu volume restriction, as I love mine. :smashin:
     
  12. gerbilly

    gerbilly
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    Im going to disagree with you again Lukey I would leave it at the half way mark, if you put it up to the 100% it distorts the sound.
     
  13. Wig

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    Where can I get Go Pod to unlock the EU cap and how does it work. Would you recommend it?
     
  14. lukey

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    Hi Gerbilly,

    I must admit that out of the 3 earphones ive had, sony, e2c and e3c i have found the sonys best for me in terms of sound quality and thumping bass (but then again im into trance music which requires that type of sound), ive never used eupod to release the volume restriction as i have found that upping the import volume suits me best. I know what you mean about increasing the distortion, but by increasing by 100% in itunes and thus the ipod means that i only have to put the ipod volume up to say 40% to achieve the volume i require, whereas previously i had to run the ipod volume at 100% to dull out the noise of the bus and by doing that i found the distortion 'problem' worse.
     
  15. GJC

    GJC
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    Google search: GoPod

    and uncap the EU volume restriction.
     
  16. gerbilly

    gerbilly
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    Just do a search on tinternet and you will get it.

    It works very easily and improves the volume levels substantially.
     
  17. Wig

    Wig
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    Okay, I'm guessing this is only for Mac as I can't find a Windows version? :(
    Do you know if it works with the nano?
    Also, I'm guessing you favour the blue half? ;)
     
  18. GJC

    GJC
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    Wig PM me your email address and I will email you the Windows version of GoPod.
     
  19. GJC

    GJC
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    Works Firewall blocks Zip files - Great! -Here is a link to the Windows version for download

    GoPod
     
  20. Wig

    Wig
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  21. David Mackenzie

    David Mackenzie
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    What Johann said. I was disappointed enough with the iPod sound quality that I sold it.
     
  22. gerbilly

    gerbilly
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    I sure do! Would I be correct in saying you are from Wigan.

    Used to stay in Eccles for a while which isnt too far away. My god it was like the League of Gentleman, I was expecting to bump into Papa Lazaru. :rotfl:
     
  23. Wig

    Wig
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    Nope, not Wigan, Manc. I am a bluenose myself though and keep tabs of what is going on. :)
     
  24. gerbilly

    gerbilly
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    Good lad! :hiya:
     

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