i pod fan

Tommy1964

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Jan 28, 2011
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hello all,

i love the convenience of my ipod and hook it up to my cambridge 550 amp with a cable.

some tracks sound great, others the bass is flabby and uncontrolled. would the wadia 170 help me

as the reviews ive seen are good or has the technology moved on? Would i be better off buying the onkyo receiver

as that includes a dac for about the same amount of money. (my music is stored on a mac as well)

thanks people
 

tino

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Sep 29, 2011
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Hi ... the Wadia 170i is primarily a digital transport although it does provide analogue outputs from your iPod directly.

The "digital transport" bit means it does not have an internal DAC (Digital to Analogue Converter) to process the digital stream from your iPod into the analogue input for your amplifier (I'm assuming your amp doesn't have digital inputs)

If you use the analogue outputs of the 170i you are basically just connecting up to the existing iPod analogue outputs so I don't think you will be gaining much over what you have already except the ability to recharge and physically dock the iPod.

However if you use a DAC with the 170i you can expect improvements.

An iPod dock such as a Pure i20 is an alternative to the 170i and this does have an internal DAC as part of the dock (so you have one box instead of two)
 
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Anonymous

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What bit rate are you storing the files as on your iphone? A low bit rate means lots of compression and loss of sound quality, increasing the bit rate to at least 320kbs will bring big improvements for zero cost, other than restricting the number of files your can store.
 

Tommy1964

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Hi, I am not sure what bit rate has been used. Much of it is lossless from CDs.

How about a squeezebox touch as they look easy to use, this would bring the files to hi fi bypassing the iPod?
 
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Anonymous

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Hi Tommy, all my music is also on iTunes, so on iTouch and laptop in my case.

I wanted to improve the sound also and opted for the Rega DAC, although you wouldn't need to spend that much on a DAC to get a huge improvement vs the internal DAC in an iPod I'm sure.

If you opt to buy a DAC I think it may also be better using the laptop as the source for your system rather than connecting via the 3.5mm jack on the iPod which is not said to be a good quality output connection.

If you have an iPhone or iTouch you can download a free app from Apple called Remote. This replicates your entire iTunes library on your iPhone, iPad or iTouch and means you can use them as a wireless remote to control your music on your laptop/hi-fi system (scroll through playlists, adjust volume, search by artist/song etc,). Very very handy.
 

Timbot

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I've got a Pure i20 (as mentioned above) which I use to listen to my iPod on my home cinema gear. It's a pretty budget set up I've got with a Sony STRDH800 so the built in DAC is pretty poor. The iPod DAC isn't great either.

I have to say that the i20 has transformed my listening experience since I got it. As mentioned above it has a built in DAC which beats the pants off the iPod and receiver DAC. You can't plug any other inputs into it though...

Hope this helps!
 

HDNumpty

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Hi

As per the posters above the way to improve the sound from your iPod is to bypass the internal DAC. You will get some improvement from using a dock-connector cable (e.g. Russ Andrews) or a cheap iPod dock (Cambridge i20) as these then use the better quality dock connector.

You could consider putting something in place that will act as a dock/DAC fro your ipod e.g.:

1. Onkyo NDS-1 & DACMagic into the CA550

2. Buy a Marantz CD6004 that has a digital USB input (currently discounted to £250 in places) which will then output to amp

3. Swop the 550 for an 'all-in-one' like a Denon or Marantz CR603 - this may reduce the overall quality of the amp

I have gone from a 3.5-RCA cable, then an analogue dock then a digital dock/DAC with considerable step up in quality each time. I got round round the problem by buying a CD player with digital inputs then an NDS-1. It sounds great.

Good luck whatever you decide!
 

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