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ZuneHD...so does it sound good?

post #1 of 92
Thread Starter 
As I've gone through several articles and a few reviews to no avail I thought I'd ask a basic question.

Is the sound quality up to expectations? Is it better than expected?

Its just that no one seems to have stopped messing around with the UI and software and actually plugged any headphones into one yet to listen.
post #2 of 92
every new player will sound good till enough people buy it and it loses its new-tech effect. give it a few weeks or months to find quality reviews of the new hardware.
post #3 of 92
Thread Starter 
Thanks for that.


So folks...how does it sound?
post #4 of 92
I just purchased a 16GB ZuneHD (my curiosity got the better of me). I'll start testing it today or tomorrow. I'm also very curious to its sound - worst case, I'll return it.
post #5 of 92
Quote:
Originally Posted by daglesj View Post
Thanks for that.


So folks...how does it sound?
Supposedly this guy that works on some software development of the Zune said that it sounds like the previous Zune and that using senn ie7's and some hd580's with a predator that he couldn't tell a difference in sound quality. This makes sense though as the Zune HD uses the same Wolfson chip as the previous Zunes.

The Zune was always said to have good sound quality but I wonder how it stacks up to the iPod 3G and the Sony X1000.
post #6 of 92
Thread Starter 
I would expect it to have a Zune 'family' sound but just curious to know if it keeps that or has upped the ante so to speak.
post #7 of 92
Quote:
Originally Posted by daglesj View Post
I would expect it to have a Zune 'family' sound but just curious to know if it keeps that or has upped the ante so to speak.
From the sound of it, it seems sound quality is just the same, which is a bit of a shame. I'm pretty excited about the Zune HD. The UI looks absolutely useful AND beautiful, but I was really hoping they would really focus on sound quality and beat out the Sony X1000 which many people believe is King of the newer players. I know Jen from Pocketables has an iPhone 3GS, a Sony X1000, and is getting a Zune HD. So I'm waiting for her review. She says the X1000 has much better sound quality than the iPhone 3GS so for her the real test is between the X1000 and the Zune HD. If the Sony would drop in price I would consider it, but the fact that it doesn't play nice with iTunes album art is pretty annoying.
post #8 of 92
I believe that the Zune HD outputs s/pdif on one of its pins, so it probably wouldn't be too difficult to make an adapter that allows you to connect the amp directly to the coax input of a portable DAC, without any additional bulk. Zune accessories have to handshake with the Zune to authenticate, and before this happens, most of the pins are disabled. If not for this, I would just solder an adapter together myself.

Anyway, point being, if some manufacturer decides to make an adapter we may end up being able to use the Zune HD with a portable DAC pretty soon.
post #9 of 92
According to Engadget the chip used is a WM8352, which means the sound quality should be good.

Specs for the chip can be found here: Wolfson Microelectronics plc: WM8352
post #10 of 92
I don't have my old Zune 30 anymore, but so far I think it has a similar sound. Still testing some stuff.

It has a similar EQ to the Zune 30 - a few presets, but no custom EQ that I can find.
post #11 of 92
How is the volume level? Is it louder than the previous Zunes? Can it drive larger sized hp's the same as my 5.5G iPod video. When I use my 5.5G I usually use it at around 1/3rd volume, and the zune would be over half for the same hp's (32ohm, not really willing to look up the sensitivity atm).

In a nutshell, the Zune 120's volume output is a but low, is the Zune HD better? Is it LOUDER?
post #12 of 92
Quote:
Originally Posted by nywytboy68 View Post
How is the volume level? Is it louder than the previous Zunes? Can it drive larger sized hp's the same as my 5.5G iPod video. When I use my 5.5G I usually use it at around 1/3rd volume, and the zune would be over half for the same hp's (32ohm, not really willing to look up the sensitivity atm).

In a nutshell, the Zune 120's volume output is a but low, is the Zune HD better? Is it LOUDER?
Right now, I'm testing with my Yuins and my FiiO E5 (because that's probably the main pair I'd use for a portable setup). I can get it somewhat loud - but, not not even close to when I use my Cowon D2. The former is loud but listenable, then other is ear-shattering loud, at the highest levels.

Highest level on the ZuneHD is around 40 on the Cowon, in a direct aural comparison.
post #13 of 92
It's a Wolfson DAC, it very likely sounds as good or bad as the next Wolfson player (Cowon, Meizu, iPod, etc).. no, I haven't heard the Zune, but I heard about a dozen players with Wolfson DACs in their circuits, and they all sounded ok-ish.
post #14 of 92
Quote:
Originally Posted by dfkt View Post
It's a Wolfson DAC, it very likely sounds as good or bad as the next Wolfson player (Cowon, Meizu, iPod, etc).. no, I haven't heard the Zune, but I heard about a dozen players with Wolfson DACs in their circuits, and they all sounded ok-ish.
Interesting comment. I find the Cowon S9 to sound superior to my iPod 5.0. Do you think that these two players sound the same?
post #15 of 92
I find the S9 (my main player) clearly superior due to its BBE sound enhancements, but flat it's probably not so different to the iPod. I would have to test it ABX wise, to be sure.
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