IPod & component systems - sound issues?


New member
Username: Daves666

Post Number: 6
Registered: Oct-04
I've been thinking seriously lately about upgrading my home stereo to take my audio experience to the next level. I've also been moving away from CDs and have my iPod connected to my receiver.

So I wonder if there are inherent limitations/problems with using the iPod as a source in a better system? [I'm leaning towards getting a NADC320bee and a decent set of speakers]. Would the iPod itself have an impact on the sound quality in a configuration like this?

New member
Username: Fishpatrol

Cincinnati, OH

Post Number: 2
Registered: Oct-04
I'd like to say there'd be no impact, since I'm an every-day iPod user myself and know the joys of carrying your collection in your pocket. But the audio source matters. Even if you only played files in Apple's Lossless codec, I doubt you'd be happy, set side-by-side with a good CD deck.

I was in a local audio shop tonight, actually, to demo a couple CD players and see if the higher cost units really sounded better. Listened to a Pioneer Elite DVD/CD player DV-45A ($700), a Rotel 1072 ($700) and an Arcam, I think the CD82 (~$1200). These through a fairly entry-level set of Martin Logan speakers which I'm not a big fan of but had heard before.

The Pioneer sounded pretty bad: a harsh, metallic sound. Bass felt flat, compressed. I was ready to attribute this mainly to the speakers until we played the same disc on the Arcam (same cable even, A:A comparison here). Really remarkable difference. Bass sounded warmer, high-end was much smoother. Amazing. The Rotel had a different tonal quality. Comparatively withdrawn in the mids, which is a sound I personally prefer. Definitely an improvement over the Pioneer. Didn't make me want to buy those speakers, but it answered my basic question.

"Get a good source" is common advice around here, and granted $1000 for a CD player seems a bit baffling at first. I didn't believe it before I went and heard it myself, but the people here aren't just making it up. Of course it depends on the sound you're looking for, but CD to iPod is not a sound upgrade. Test it yourself and find out for sure. I'll be taking my iPod in next time to see what the difference is--see if it's listenable. I'm very new at this myself, but it sure doesn't take long to find a sound that miles ahead of what you're used to.

Unregistered guest
Same here. I just bought an Arcam A65+ and Arcam CD73T cd player. I had asked to put a pioneer DV575 DVD player (which I own and use for dvds) and this Arcam cdplayer next to each other to hear the difference myself. The Arcam gave a 'deeper' sound, meaning that it gave the impression of handling different layers of music; the pioneer on the other hand sounded flat. Not that this Pioneer is a bad dvdplayer - it has gotten very good reviews.. But you can hear the difference with a good cdplayer!

in the end i was hesitatin between the arcam a65+ and the a80, which has more power. the a80 sounded better - but was in another price class; so i chose the a65+ in the end. As my first introduction into hifi i think this is a good combination (with b&w 602 s3 speakers)

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