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line-out volume control for ipod? - Page 2

post #16 of 30
Quote:
Originally Posted by gratefulshrink
Just to be clear, using an amp with an ipod is [nearly] a waste unless the dock/line-out is taken advantage of. IMO, of course.
Hmm.
Using a SuperMacroV1 off the HP out (iPod Photo 60) with either ER4P/S, EX71, E3C, SR80 or HD650 gives a quite dramatic, easily noticeable improvement for me over those cans direct off the HP out (for various reasons: 300 Ohm Senns need a bit of current, the others suffer the low-impedance bass falloff).
Using the line out (pocket dock or sik din) with the above does seem to squeeze the last drop out of it tho'.
The problem seems to be with the phones loading up the output stage of the iPod - and surely this is exactly what would happen with phones if plugged straight into the line-out via a pot?

I have to use the hp out with the amp portable myself because neither the sik or the pocketdock will squeeze comfortably into my Gigabag.
post #17 of 30
Quote:
Originally Posted by Shmuel
thanks, Gratefulshrink, for the advice
will consider

and skylab, how are you? hope the turntable and frog are being enjoyed
can you give me any info on the amp you recommended--nothing much from google. And please say hello to your wife

thanks all
Shmuel
The family, and your turntable are well! :-). Hope you are well. I bought my Xenos amp on Ebay - if you search there you should find it, the manufacturer sells new ones on Ebay regularly. I can post link later (at airport now!):-)
post #18 of 30
using inline attenuator could potentially be much cleaner than shooting the line out signal through the full circut on a headphone amp, only to LOWER the original signal level.

since IEMs use such small drivers, so close to the ears, they will not need alot of power to reach high listening levels. the raw line out signal might be enough to drive certain models.

the original poster suggested that the raw lineout signal was in fact powerful enough to get his IEM louder than he could comfortably listen to, at that point it doesnt make any sense to buy a circut that will amplify the signal further, only to ultmiately attenuate it lower than in its raw form, the only thing an amp will do is impart its own flavor(actually its signal degredation) before it attenuates it down.

the situation to use an amp would be with dynamic phones like grados or senns with 10,000x larger drivers(possible exageration) that need more power than the raw signal can provide. if he isnt using that type of headphone then imho theres no need for an amp, the inline attenuator will be perfect.

literally a wire with volume control, we have been searching for this ellusive beast all along
post #19 of 30
Quote:
using inline attenuator could potentially be much cleaner than shooting the line out signal through the full circut on a headphone amp, only to LOWER the original signal level.
I totally agree with you euclid...
I 'm starting to think that the iPod > Pocketdock > attenuator > earphones worths a try...
post #20 of 30
Thread Starter 
wow
thanks for these posts
i am expecting the shure attenuator this week
i look forward to the experience and will comment on sound
Shmuel
post #21 of 30
For the future users of the ipod nano, you can affect the line out sound level with the scroll wheel.
post #22 of 30
I just tried it and the scroll wheel has no effect on the line out on my ipod.
post #23 of 30
bear in mind that the line out has pretty high output impedance, most of the time alot higher than your phone's impedance. it's a good practice to keep the output impedance of the source/amp 1/10th or equals to the load impedance for voltage bridging/maximum power transfer. although the line-out may have more than adequte power to drive certain phones, it's usually better to get an amp. you can ignore all the reasons for using an amp if you don't hear a difference though.
post #24 of 30
I just can't conceive of throwing a 32-ohm headphone load on the line-out and getting better sound than using the built-in headphone output driver which is actually designed to handle that 32-ohm load.

I mean obviously if the headphone output driver was sufficiently crappy (like it adds 10% THD across the board or does 4,000Hz low-pass filtering or something) then you could avoid the effects of its bad design by using the line-out directly. But for any reasonable output stage you're at best going to luck out and get about the same sound quality from the line-out. Not to mention having to do without a volume control.

IOW, if your portable music source sounds noticably better with the headphone hooked directly to the line-out then your regular headphone output must be broken.
post #25 of 30
my feeling is the ipod headphone out was purposly crippled so the stock earbuds would not sound too offensive. they rolled off the bass and the highs to prevent distortion and glare on such crappy headphones.

the impedance on the line out is a good point. im really curious what will sound better too b/c ive avoided getting an amp and sacfricing portabilty, so im continuing to use headphone out.
post #26 of 30
Since you can get a halfway decent amp for $50, I'd say that it makes more sense to go that route than buy a attenuator and try that with the line out which definitely should not be able to drive decent headphones correctly. I'd be stunned if even the $45 Xenos 0HA didn't sound far better than the line out with attenuator option.

In fact, Shmuel, I'd be MORE than happy to loan you my 0HA after you get your attenuator so you can compare. I trust your ears.
post #27 of 30
Thread Starter 
Skylab
thanks for the offer
i would love to take you up on it
i received the attenuator today and am about to take a listen
are you going to be downtown any time soon?
Shmuel
post #28 of 30
Quote:
bear in mind that the line out has pretty high output impedance, most of the time alot higher than your phone's impedance. it's a good practice to keep the output impedance of the source/amp 1/10th or equals to the load impedance for voltage bridging/maximum power transfer. although the line-out may have more than adequte power to drive certain phones, it's usually better to get an amp. you can ignore all the reasons for using an amp if you don't hear a difference though.
I think your considerations to be perfeclty right if we refer to the lineout > earphone setup.
If we refer to the lineout > attenuator > earphone setup we have to consider that the earphone impedence may be drastically increased by the attenuator...
post #29 of 30
Quote:
Originally Posted by Shmuel
Skylab
thanks for the offer
i would love to take you up on it
i received the attenuator today and am about to take a listen
are you going to be downtown any time soon?
Shmuel
Shmuel I sent you a private message.

We'll look forward to reading your comparisons.
post #30 of 30
I have a perfectly good headphone amp with no volume control and I would like to utilize the hotter dock/line out of my iPod 3g (it gets louder with a dock to 1/8" connection than I can adjust with the volume control with the hp out). There does not seem to be any high-quality 1/8" inline stereo volume attenuators available at all, and the consensus seems to be that this cannot be done as a high-quality volume pot, only as an inline variable resistor.

I thought I could get away with the Fiio E1, but while it's a very cool uh, thing, it does have some kind of self-powered active amp in it so it buzzes quite noticeably during silence when paired with my old but relatively recently replaced Simpl A1, a pretty-good sounding opamp-based iPod-nesting headphone amp.

So I thought I would just have to revive this thread in case I am mistaken
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