Regarding iPod sound quality, are headphone jack and dock-jack different?

Discussion in 'iPod' started by kavika411, Jan 17, 2007.

  1. kavika411 macrumors 6502a


    Jan 8, 2006
    Thank you for reading this. On an iPod, if you are to listen to a song through a set of speakers and, hypotheticaly, the speakers allowed you to connect to the iPod either through a 1/8 inch jack (the iPod's top headphone jack) or through the dock-jack (the iPod's bottom proprietary jack (don't know what it's called)), would there be a difference in sound quality?

    Thank you for your thoughts.
  2. zelmo macrumors 603


    Jul 3, 2004
    Mac since 7.5
    I recently got a car head unit with a dock connector and a line-in plug. The difference is startling. There is no comparison between the superior output quality of the dock connector and the average sound from the headphone jack. At least for me...YMMV.
  3. amiga macrumors 6502


    Jul 12, 2006
    The jack on the dock is a line out and the one on top of the iPod is obviously a headphone socket so there is a difference! To speakers audio out it better than headphones.
  4. telecomm macrumors 65816


    Nov 30, 2003
    I've only got a Shuffle, so I'm not sure of the specifics for other iPods, but typically the difference between line-out and headphone jacks is the volume levels and processing. So, connecting a device from line-out to line-in, the volume levels are standardized, so adjusting the volume on the iPod won't affect the volume of the music you're playing. Similarly, EQ settings on the device usually don't affect line-out audio, so if you've got the bass boosted on your iPod, it won't affect the bass levels of the sound coming out of the line-out. Connected through the headphone jack, volume and EQ levels will affect the sound you hear.

    If you're connecting from the headphone jack to a line-in connector, weird things can happen with EQ and volume settings. If, for example, you've got the bass boosted on your iPod and on your stereo, it will effectively be boosted twice. This can make things sound terrible, and similarly it can be a bit tricky to get the volume levels right, since, for example, a low output volume with a high stereo volume may play at the same level as a high input volume and low stereo volume, but one will have less noise.

    I suppose the iPod jack works like a line-out (as was suggested above), but I'm not sure about this. :eek:

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