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iPod Classic vs. FiiO E7, Cirrus Logic vs. Wolfson
iPod Classic vs. FiiO E7
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post Apr 26 2012, 14:26
Post #1

Group: Developer
Posts: 1455
Joined: 4-May 04
From: France
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There's a lot of hype in audiophile forums about how the new iPod Classic (with a Cirrus Logic CS42L55 DAC) sounds noticeably worse than older iPods (with a Wolfson WM8758 DAC). So I decided to compare my iPod Classic (with the Cirrus Logic DAC) to my FiiO E7, which has a Wolfson WM8740 DAC (with better specs than the WM8758).

I don't currently have a good soundcard with line inputs, so I had to use an old laptop to make the recordings, pending something better. I used Audacity (16 bit / 44.1 kHz) and recorded the iPod via its Line Out Dock and the E7 via its headphone out, both with the same 16/44.1 WAV file as a source. The song is Revenge! by Spoon, from The WIRED CD: Rip. Sample. Mash. Share., a compilation of songs licensed under Creative Commons "Sampling Plus", that can be legally shared.

I aligned the recordings and volume-matched them by running wavegain on them. Download from DropBox: A.flac, B.flac, C.flac.

C.flac is the reference file that was played back on both the iPod and the E7 when recording. I'm reluctant to say which is which regarding A.flac and B.flac, because aside from ABX logs, I'd like to know which file people prefer, if any.

This is the first time I do something like this, so let me know if my methodology is valid or if it needs an adjustment. The big question I have, is whether my recordings are good enough for the purpose of comparing the two devices, or if I need a better sound card.

See my profile for measurements, tools and recommendations.
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Arnold B. Kruege...
post Apr 26 2012, 19:31
Post #2

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From: USA, 48236
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QUOTE (skamp @ Apr 26 2012, 09:26) *
[completely unnecessary full quote of first post was here]

While I was reading your post, I took a look at the summary statistics for your files. The level matching may be marginal for good DBTs.

I also found this paper and file collection that may enable you to find out about the actual in-use performance of the two converters from the files you posted:

Transfer function measurement files


transfer measurement paper

The prerequsite software - Octave and PD (the later may not be needed) appear to be open source freeware, so your costs for investigating this would be just your time..

PD download site

Octave download site

This information may give you some very useful insights into your situation, and an account of your sucess or failure with this software may be helpful to the rest of us.

This post has been edited by db1989: Apr 26 2012, 19:47
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