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Has anyone heard the Ipod 3G (WM8731)?

post #1 of 7
Thread Starter 

Lately i've been blown away by the sound quality of this old piece of junk. It was my first Ipod back in 2002 or so and has a dent and lots of scratches.

It charges by firewire only, but you can sync it with USB. Right now i'm using Rockbox on it.

 

It's one of the few portable players that makes my DJ100 sound nearly as good as my main setup.

 

I've compared it to my Ipod Touch 2G, Ipod Video 5.5 and a my Clip+ and Fuze and it sounds much better. Not subtle.

 

The biggest improvement over the others is how much larger the soundstage is. Instrument separation is just so much better. At times when listening to my Dj100 with it i feel as if I'm having to look around to pinpoint all the instruments. It's playing tricks with my head. Soundstage just feels more spaced out and wider.

 

There is some warmth, but I would say maybe a touch of warmth. The bass seems very very slightly emphasized. Probably not. Probably the most natural sounding source I've had.

 

I connected it up to my main desktop amp and it's soundstage is even larger than that of my ODAC!! Makes me sick! Largest i've ever heard. What the heck?

 

Level of detail is much higher than the ODAC also. Everything is much fuller sounding and still crystal clear.

 

It uses the WM8731 DAC which is the same one in my Iaudio 7. Too bad that one doesn't have the power to drive the DJ100 well enough (to my liking). 

 

Is there another Ipod that has a DAC that sounds identical to the 8731? I'd like to get more storage (15GB stinks) and be able to charge with USB.

 

I didn't like the 5.5gb Video, so maybe theres another out there I can try. My Ipod Touch 2G is nice, but it's too cold and it's treble feels kind of edgy sounding.

 

Here's the 3G i'm talking about:

 


Edited by tdockweiler - 3/3/13 at 4:49pm
post #2 of 7
i heard my friend's set, sounded quite nice i remember. has games also.

back then we were listening through ibuds and i told him to get a better earpiece for his 700 dollar ipod.
post #3 of 7
Quote:
Originally Posted by tdockweiler View Post

 

I didn't like the 5.5gb Video, so maybe theres another out there I can try. My Ipod Touch 2G is nice, but it's too cold and it's treble feels kind of edgy sounding.

 

Here's the 3G i'm talking about:

 

 

The best iPod I have heard is the 5.5G Video, although the 4G Touch and Shuffle and the 7G Classic are pretty good too. That 3G model of yours must really be good to surpass the 5.5's sound.

post #4 of 7
Thread Starter 

I wonder if there was any computer DAC out there with the WM8731? I know it won't mean i'd get the same sound or close.

I guess I will need to try the Ipod 4G also.

 

Believe it or not the Cowon Iaudio 7 uses the WM8731. I never realized this because it doesn't sound as good with my DJ100 due to less power output (I think).

 

The Fiio E17 uses the WM8740 so maybe that has a similar sounded. I hated the E10, but it's still worth a try (same DAC!). I know that DACs and Amps with the same chipsets can often sound very different.

post #5 of 7

Older ipods are good sounding with over the ear headphones. Newer models are more optimised for IEMs and their longer battery life tends to compromise listening with over the ear headphones. I've never heard the 3G and always thought the 5/5.5G were the pinacle. I also liked the Nano 1G. The Wolfson WM8740 is in many high end audio players, it never made it into any Apple product as far as I know. Those older classics have a style of their own and are much easier to repair than newer models, they are also durable. Perhaps Apple will make a new Classic with a 240GB HDD, touch screen, WM8740 and a nice OP2604 OP amp or maybe not. 

post #6 of 7

I too am smitten by the older iPods.  My Nano 1G sounds great (and no it is not going back to Apple even after they recalled it for a battery issue).  I did the Tarkan solid-state mod on my iPod Video 5.5G thanks to folks here and now have a 64GB Rockboxed player that I will eventually put more GB in when cards get cheaper.   This is the best sounding portable source I have when I amp its output.  I am not sure what I would replace it with if I bought new. 

 

As for the sound, the 5.5G definitely sounds better to me amped with an LOD than from its headphone out.  If you haven't tried using an LOD/amp, you might do this to see if the 5.5G would work for you, because it is very mod-able.  You should be able to get 256GB installed in it with a little effort.  

post #7 of 7
Thread Starter 

I honestly have not tried the 5.5 with a LOD that much. Perhaps the 5.5 Video has a better line out than the Ipod 3g? It's always possible.

Having to charge my Ipod with Firewire and then sync with USB is kind of a hassle.

 

Do any of you also have an issue with Rockbox and older Ipods where the channels get randomly reversed? Sometimes things that are supposed to come from the left and from the right.

I'd pay money to have this fixed with Rockbox. I think I've tried at least 3 versions of Rockbox.

 

I'll try the Ipod 4G sometime too. Maybe it will sound identical to the Headphone out of my 3G.

 

The 3G is one of the first Ipods i've tried that makes my DJ100 sound as good as my desktop amp + dac.

 

supposedly the 4G and 5G models are much easier to mod for extra storage.

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