Well placebo can also reach over to the hardcore-objective side, even if it's based on expectations of a negative outcome (bias ;)...
Edited by lee730 - 1/23/13 at 4:32am
Not dark, but a bit darker than my previous ipods, No experience with 5.5 though
Without rockboxing, IPC has more power. Clip+ (rockboxed) sound good and can drive earphones way louder than IPC, but also sounds more aggressive than IPC IMO. But the good thing is you can always EQ it. You can also rockbox IPC too which will make it sound identical and have the same functions as the rockboxed clip.
I am sure you heard of that IPC sounds like cold boiled water :) not much of emotions but present music as the way it is.
Unless you're volume capped, the Classic actually goes louder then the Clip by about 1 dB.
They're both directly coupled, spectrally flat low impedance amps, so my guess would be a lack of proper volume matching. Thats usually the cause when someone reports a difference in dynamics, timbre, etc in two very neutral devices. People tend to hear differences in volume like that. How did you volume match?
FWIW if you don't volume match you will likely get very wrong results. Its actually very important that you do that.
My claims are entirely hollow too, and I certainly can't be bothered unrolling loads of charts.
However, I like listening to stuff on my Clip. I can get tons of detail and volume out of it, and it sounds good to me, which is all that is important. I am sort of attached to it, and would miss it if it broke.
If I try using any sort of iPod (my wife is a fan), I just don't like the sound. Simple as that. Can't say why. It just comes across as slightly ... uneventful. Nothing terrible, but if I were American, I would certainly reach for the word "Meh."
I do get the "dark" remark, though. I suspect it was coined by a clarinet player. It is exactly the extra bit of richness you get from a Buffet RC over an R13. (Not that I use either - strictly old school Boosey & Hawkes driver, me...)
Could be they went off to do something more rewarding?
Anyway, all audiophiles take care of their hearing. Banging one's head against a brick wall has long been a thoroughly proven contraindication.