iPod 5.5 sounds worse than latest iPhone?

Discussion in 'iPod' started by Shakedown St., Oct 6, 2017.

  1. Shakedown St., Oct 6, 2017
    Last edited: Oct 7, 2017

    Shakedown St. macrumors newbie

    Shakedown St.

    Oct 6, 2017
    For the longest time wanted to get my hand on a 5.5, to hear what all the hype was about.

    Wolfson DAC's are supposed to be "amazing", and to be honest it sounds better than my 7th gen iPod Classic.

    However side by side, with my iPhone 6 Plus beside me it's just night and day and not in the way I expected.

    With no EQ applied, Dylan's Blonde on Blond on the 5.5 is stripped of bass and clarity almost harsh. I plug in my iPhone 6 Plus, you can hear the chords melt like you are apart of the song... wider soundstage?

    So my question is, does it make sense that modern iPhones would sound better than the supposed Apple holly grail from 2005?

    Granted I am using Apple's Earbuds, but every time I prefer the iPhone.
  2. yadmonkey macrumors 65816


    Aug 13, 2002
    Western Spiral
    The only fair comparison you can make is using high quality headphones. Worse is better these days. In other words, studios too often will tend to mix music to make small speakers and cheap earbuds sound better because that's what most people are using. The same mix doesn't sound great on a great system. Maybe it's the same with the lesser DACs - they make cheap earbuds sound better, so then the better DACs sound worse on cheap earbuds when you A/B them.
  3. Shakedown St. thread starter macrumors newbie

    Shakedown St.

    Oct 6, 2017
    Quite possibly, only music loaded on so far is "mastered for iTunes". I do have a really good pair waiting to be used, waiting on 3.5 adapters in the mail.
  4. Shakedown St. thread starter macrumors newbie

    Shakedown St.

    Oct 6, 2017
    You were 90% right, got my old Studio 10 headphones out of the closet and plugged in the iPhone to my reciever.

    The iPhone bass increased dramtically, too much bass for my liking. The iPod 5.5 now has enough bass, very neutral sounding but I would still give the larger soundstage to the iPhone. Could be because of the increased bass too, hard to tell.

    5.5 is a tad more fatiguing, then it begs the question is there any mp3 player out there better than these two. Once you get a taste for fine wine, you can't stop.

    *All music tested was "mastered for iTunes".
  5. Slix macrumors 65816


    Mar 24, 2010
    I don't have any experience with the iPod classic 5.5, but I really love the sound my 4th gen iPod color puts out. Especially compared to the nanos and shuffles I have, it sounds great. It really all depends on what you're listening to and with what headphones, and what you're used to hearing.

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4 October 6, 2017