Zune is not audiophile quality!

Discussion in 'iPod' started by princealfie, Nov 14, 2006.

  1. macrumors 68030

    princealfie

    #1
    I doubt that I would have any interest in the Zune after seeing what file formats it plays. Wav files? Geewhiz, at least the iPod can play the Apple Lossless tracks (and nano too). Those are wonderful quality for uncompressed tracks.

    It's too bad that M$ didn't take in consideration to have the audiophiles on board with this Zuney loony idea. It looks interesting but the limitations are growing more and more apparent.

    Hello, new iPod + audiophile (KLF)
     
  2. macrumors 603

    MacBoobsPro

    #2
    Is that all it plays? Arent WAVs about ten times larger than MP3s?
     
  3. macrumors 68030

    princealfie

    #3
    it plays for audio files: mp3, wma (and not all of them), and wav files... that's about it. :(
     
  4. Moderator emeritus

    #4

    Let's see the ogg and flac lot get shirty about that. They've been moaning about that for ages not being on the iPod.
     
  5. macrumors G3

    iMeowbot

    #5
    And AAC. And for audio, that is about that. Nothing lossless with compression.
     
  6. macrumors regular

    agentmouthwash

    #6
    WAV files are the PC version of AIFFS. CD Quality, uncompressed.

    Either way, the zune stinks.
     
  7. macrumors G3

    Sesshi

    #7
    I tried being a portable audiophile for a while but it's too much hard work. Portable players bog down with FLAC / Apple Lossless and it's not worth the hassle. And I think this is less about audiophilia but nerdism regardless of your hearing abilities. Regardless of what people say, most people - even those with trained ears - have a very hard time making out the difference between CD and 256K MP3 when mobile if they're honest with themselves. Most wouldn't be able to tell at 160K I bet.
     
  8. macrumors 68030

    princealfie

    #8
    Huh? I can certainly tell the difference. Perhaps too much Chemical Romance eh? :D

    Actually if you encode Miles Davis you can most certainly tell the difference.
     
  9. macrumors 68030

    princealfie

    #9
    True but wav files are way too big!
     
  10. macrumors G3

    Sesshi

    #10
    Of course you can, of course you can ;)

    I'm not saying it's impossible to tell the difference while stationary in a domestic setting with quality speakers / headphones, but I am saying it's impossible to tell the difference in an anywhere near mobile situation.
     
  11. macrumors 603

    gekko513

    #11
    For once, I'm with Sesshi. ;)
     
  12. Moderator

    balamw

    Staff Member

    #12
  13. macrumors G3

    Sesshi

    #13
    Yes but I doubt the Zune supports.

    I like Sony's method of Lossless compression, which they refer to as Scalable Compression. They compress to Lossless, extract a lossy copy from it and store the single music file as a [lossy + additional information needed to make it lossless].

    This way you have Lossless for home and lossy for portable without additional transcoding overheads later. Nice. Shame that apart from that nice feature, Sonicstage doesn't even begin to match up with iTunes.
     
  14. macrumors 68030

    Flowbee

    #14
    What exactly do you mean by this? My iPod has never 'bogged down' with Apple lossless files.
     
  15. macrumors 68030

    princealfie

    #15
    Me too... APL files play perfectly on my blue iPod mini.
     
  16. macrumors G3

    Sesshi

    #16
    It's slower in response in track playing. You get less battery life. The storage thing isn't such a big deal due to the flexibility of iTunes but it's still an issue for lower-capacity models. Given that you're not going to hear a difference, unless you're loading AL's on your iPod because your home library is lossless and you don't want to transcode, doesn't make sense.
     
  17. macrumors G3

    iMeowbot

    #17
    The current offering doesn't claim to play anything close to all Windows Media formats, that's why they are disclaiming support for things like Media Center and PlaysForSureUnlessIt'sZune content.
     
  18. macrumors 68030

    princealfie

    #18
    Why was this choice made?
     
  19. macrumors G3

    iMeowbot

    #19
    Maybe they hate their customers, all of them, OEMs and consumers alike. Maybe their existing framework had some fatal flaw that they want to bury. Maybe Microsoft secretly loathe themselves for past dirty tricks and really want to fail. Maybe J Allard was abducted by Apple and replaced by an evil replicant (he certainly doesn't look quite human). Maybe they were in a hurry to get something out on the market and hoped that no one would notice until they lost their sales slips. Maybe Ballmer set up the entire Zune project as an elaborate gag.

    Or not.
     
  20. Moderator

    balamw

    Staff Member

    #20
    Somehow I find it more than just a bit ironic that the Zune is designed to do a better job of playing most songs ripped with iTunes (AAC/MP3 standard) than those from WMP version whatever. :rolleyes:

    B
     
  21. macrumors 603

    #21
    I doubt you could hear the difference at 256 in a blind listening test. And Apple Lossless IS compressed, it's just not lossy compression.
     
  22. macrumors G3

    Sesshi

    #22
    Just curious but princealfie, are you going the whole hog with external amplification? What're you listening with?
     
  23. macrumors 68030

    princealfie

    #23
    I use my test Grado SR-60's in the meantime. I plan to upgrade to the Grado SR-1 whenever I get a chance.

    No kidding I would like portable external amplification if I could figure out which one to get for my iPod.

    There is a serious difference. Most people don't care if they aren't looking for it but people that analyze their music like I do will note the differences accordingly.

    Sennheiser HD-650's anyone?
     
  24. macrumors G3

    Sesshi

    #24
    Interesting. How do you near anything (let alone the difference between lossy and lossless) while walking around with the wide-open SR-60?

    There's only a major difference with external portable amps if you use headphones which were never designed to be powered from a portable. I was just curious to know whether you'd bought into that whole thing of portable amp + big phones for the 'must run Lossless' thing.
     
  25. macrumors 68030

    princealfie

    #25
    I didn't allude to must have lossless but I found it be to be more engaging in the music I hear.

    Semi-open headphones are awesome. You ought to try them for yourself :D
     

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