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Your favorite $100 amp to use with an iPod?

post #1 of 11
Thread Starter 

 

For the last 3 or 4 years I've been using a pair of Etymotic ER4P headphones with an iPod. (Currently a 2nd gen iPod Touch). I sort of have the bug to upgrade and add a headphone amp, but I'm cheap and don't have the time anymore to DIY. So I was thinking about buying a Headroom Total Airhead, and use it with a SendStation iPod Pocket Dock so I wouldn't have to use the headphone out jack on the iPod. What do you guys think of this setup compared to what else is out there for the same money? This option would cost me about $120 with the Pocket dock.

 

I listen mostly to all genres of rock music, and a small amount of jazz and World music. All the files I play on my iPod are WAV files, (no mp3) so the sound potential is there. 

 

Any suggestions are appreciated.

 

crazychile

post #2 of 11

You could always buy a premade cmoy.

post #3 of 11
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by mythless View Post

You could always buy a premade cmoy.



Ok, I've been away from the forum for a few years, so treat me like a newb. I vaguely remember discussions about a cmoy, but where would I buy one pre-made?

 

Thanks for the suggestion.

post #4 of 11

JDS Labs

 

This is my portable amp of choice that I bought early this year and I love it. It costs $69 including shipping and in my eyes, it's worth every penny.

post #5 of 11

I recommend Mini^3 and Meier Corda HeadSix, which both are sold more than $100 as new, but can find used for $80-100 in For Sale forum.

post #6 of 11
Quote:
Originally Posted by TheGame21x View Post

JDS Labs

 

This is my portable amp of choice that I bought early this year and I love it. It costs $69 including shipping and in my eyes, it's worth every penny.



Agreed. I got one of these a few weeks back and am very pleased. It's a brighter sound than my Total Airhead, (inherited from my son), and compliments my portables nicely.

 

s.

post #7 of 11

I have enjoyed Gary's PA2V2 with my ER4S, unfortunately the Nuforce icon mobile was not powerful enough to drive them but I would think it more than up to the task with the 4P's. What I did hear with the 4S/nuforce combo I liked a lot, very natural sound. I use a stock latest gen iPod classic.

post #8 of 11
Thread Starter 

Has anyone done a direct comparison between the JDS Cmoy and the PA2V2? At this point I think I'm probably leaning towards the PA2V2. The Altoids tin enclosure for the Cmoy doesn't do much for me. I already have a few microphone preamps that I built in those tins, so I'm beyond the novelty phase of that. Unless the sound far exceeds the PA2V2, then I'll still consider it.

 

Thanks everyone.

post #9 of 11

I think using amps with balanced-armature iems is generally pointless. Even with the er-4S (with an ipod as source) I noticed only extremely slight, barely audible improvement, and this is the version of the er-4 designed to be used with an amp. With the er-4P I doubt you'd notice any audible difference at all. On top of this, you sacrifice portability by using an amp. Personally, I recommend saving your money to upgrade your phones unless you want an expensive paperweight (that you get to carry with you).

 

Edit: Also, why use wav instead of alac?


Edited by Antony6555 - 11/28/10 at 8:50am
post #10 of 11
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Antony6555 View Post

 

Edit: Also, why use wav instead of alac?



Whats ALAC? If thats the Apple Lossless Compression, I don't like it. I know its supposed to be indistinguishable from WAV, but something about it sounds funny to me. I can't really describe it except it seems like some weird phasey stuff is happening at different frequencies.

post #11 of 11

The best $100 upgrade for an iPod is the Clip+ and some beer, although for those hearing 'weird, phasey stuff' from ALAC files, I'd be inclined to invest in cotton earbuds and beer.

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