Total Portable Audio Rig
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mrcheese321

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Okay, here is the situation:;

I'm going to China in about a month and a half. It is a 22 hour plane flight one way and when I get there, I will be taking a 28 day tour of mainland China that includes at least 40 hours on sleeper trains. So, I'm looking for a good portable rig.

Only 4 requriments:
1) total has to be under $450 for everything
2) has to be 4+ gigs
3) ambient noise canceling in some way/closed headphones.
4) AA/AAA compatible, or USB/Firewire chargable

I want everything - dap, headphones, amp (if necessary).

Pertinent Info:
I listen to mostly rock/pop/rap.
Size doesn't really matter because everything is going into my electronics briefcase.

Any suggestions?

Edit:
One more thing, I would like to have everything new or from some type of store. AMEX has theft/return protection and it has to be from a store, not an individual.
 
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The Smokester

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I have several hard disc players. The one that lasts the longest and also sounds good is the Creative Zen Touch. It will go for over 24 hours when playing 192 kbps MP3's through Etymotics ER-4p earphones.

That's the second thing...I would recommend the above ER-4p earphones. They will isolate ambient sound by over 20 dB (great on plane or train) and are very compact to carry. They play music very well and have many advocates here on the forum.

Finally, if you get the proper plug adapter you will be able to recharge the Zen Touch since its charger can handle 120-220 volts.

This is a first-rate system that I usually travel with and brand new this should fit within your $450 budget.
 
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nsx280ps

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Sony NW-HD5 (30+ hours battery for mp3)
Shure e4c
 
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PrototypeX2

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Quote:

Originally Posted by nsx280ps
Sony NW-HD5 (30+ hours battery for mp3)
Shure e4c



I forgot about the HD5s. This would be a good rig, too.
 
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mrcheese321

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I've read that the hd5s are having their buttons crack?

anyone experience this?

I don't really want the ipod, there have been so many negative coments on them, especially about their batteries.

One more thing: Is it possible to have no-lag between the songs? I purchased a Palm LifeDrive and it has that problem which is why it is going back.

c
 
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PrototypeX2

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Quote:

Originally Posted by mrcheese321
I've read that the hd5s are having their buttons crack?

anyone experience this?

I don't really want the ipod, there have been so many negative coments on them, especially about their batteries.

One more thing: Is it possible to have no-lag between the songs? I purchased a Palm LifeDrive and it has that problem which is why it is going back.

c



I've only heard good comments about the HD5 so far, so that's a new info.
You may be talking about a normal iPod, but 2G iPod mini has a great battery life.
I think you are talking about Gapless playback. I believe Rio Karma is the only player availabe right now that does that.

Best wishes,
 
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firefox360

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The 2nd Generation iPod Mini has an estimated battery life of 18 hrs. But it has been proven that if you put the player in shuffle and just let it play without constantly adjusting the volume and skipping tracks here and there, it will go over 20 hours non-stop. So I think the iPod mini is a great idea, you also have two choices, 4GB of storage or 6GB of storage. Which ever you choose depends on what your budget permits.

As for canalphones the Shure E4c's are great and if you want bass the Ultimate Ears super.fi 4pro are the choice. If you want to be on the budget a bit you have the Shure E3c and the Etymotic ER-6i.

So the prices are:

Apple iPod mini - 4GB: $199.00 @ Apple Store
Apple iPod mini - 6GB: $249.00 @ Apple Store

Etymotic Research ER6: $119.00 @ HeadRoom: Headphone.com
Etymotic Research ER6i: $109.99 @ EarphoneSolutions.com
Shure E3c: $121.99 @ EarphoneSolutions.com
Shure E4c: $198.00 @ EarphoneSolutions.com
 
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PrototypeX2

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Quote:

Originally Posted by firefox360
The 2nd Generation iPod Mini has an estimated battery life of 18 hrs. But it has been proven that if you put the player in shuffle and just let it play without constantly adjusting the volume and skipping tracks here and there, it will go over 20 hours non-stop. So I think the iPod mini is a great idea, you also have two choices, 4GB of storage or 6GB of storage. Which ever you choose depends on what your budget permits.

As for canalphones the Shure E4c's are great and if you want bass the Ultimate Ears super.fi 4pro are the choice. If you want to be on the budget a bit you have the Shure E3c and the Etymotic ER-6i.

So the prices are:

Apple iPod mini - 4GB: $199.00 @ Apple Store
Apple iPod mini - 6GB: $249.00 @ Apple Store

Etymotic Research ER6: $119.00 @ HeadRoom: Headphone.com
Etymotic Research ER6i: $109.99 @ EarphoneSolutions.com
Shure E3c: $121.99 @ EarphoneSolutions.com
Shure E4c: $198.00 @ EarphoneSolutions.com



Haha I personally don't like iPod's SQ, so...
 
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mrcheese321

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yes, gapless playback is what I want - thanks.

As for the ipod, not having a custom EQ really pis*es me off.

One more question for everyone. I have a lot of older mp3s that were ripped 8-9 years ago. I'm not sure what the rate was, but I'm sure it was at least 128. Am I going to have to re-rip/buy those songs again because the new canal phones are going to pick-up every little thing that is wrong with them, or will I be okay?

At the moment, I'm thinking either a Rio Carbon, Creative Zen or the I-river h-10. I like the sexyness of the Sony hd5, and I've read that they are willing to replace the units with cracked buttons, so I will consider that one as well.

Is there anything that anyone has to say good/bad about either of these?

Also, with the 'phones, I'm considering the E4cs, the ER-4P/Ss and the ER-6. What are those EU Super Fi Pros? I've never heard of them.

Thanks everyone

c
 
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gshan

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Quote:

Originally Posted by mrcheese321
One more question for everyone. I have a lot of older mp3s that were ripped 8-9 years ago. I'm not sure what the rate was, but I'm sure it was at least 128. Am I going to have to re-rip/buy those songs again because the new canal phones are going to pick-up every little thing that is wrong with them, or will I be okay?

I like the sexyness of the Sony hd5, and I've read that they are willing to replace the units with cracked buttons, so I will consider that one as well.



I say, do a blind hearing test and be the judge for yourself. Rip the same song at a few different qualities like 128, 192, 320, 2xx vbr (?), flac/lossless/wac/etc, etc. and see if you can tell the difference. Trust your own ears, and choose the one that best suits you. Imo if you'll only be listening outside during your commute or something, lower quality is fine because ambience kills some detail even with canalphones. If you can afford to lower the quality, that means you'll get to bring more music
.

The HD5 is extremely small. Saw it firsthand today while buying my sony flash player, and wow. It's like a deck of cards - maybe even smaller.
 
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Quote:

Originally Posted by mrcheese321
What are those EU Super Fi Pros? I've never heard of them.

Thanks everyone

c



Ultimate Ears Super.Fi Pros are the new canalphones from UE.
You'll see quite some stuff about them in the Headphones section.
 
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mrcheese321

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After reading about the EUs I am thinking about those too.

I'm strongly considering them because everyone says that they don't get "tired" after listening to them for extended periods of time. The DAP and 'phones that I'm going to be buying are going to be used a lot during my travels and then at night during the semester when I go to bed (I'm Type A and if I don't have music on, my brain won't turn off and I can't sleep) since I will have a roommate next semester.

As of now, it is looking like the EUs and a Rio Karma/Carbon (I'm not sure if the Carbon has gapless or not). Possibly the Sony because it is so sexy, but I'm still not sure there.

Since nobody has said anything about an amp, is it really not necessary for the type of rig that I want, or just nobody has any suggestions?

TIA
 
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PrototypeX2

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Quote:

Originally Posted by mrcheese321
After reading about the EUs I am thinking about those too.

I'm strongly considering them because everyone says that they don't get "tired" after listening to them for extended periods of time. The DAP and 'phones that I'm going to be buying are going to be used a lot during my travels and then at night during the semester when I go to bed (I'm Type A and if I don't have music on, my brain won't turn off and I can't sleep) since I will have a roommate next semester.

As of now, it is looking like the EUs and a Rio Karma/Carbon (I'm not sure if the Carbon has gapless or not). Possibly the Sony because it is so sexy, but I'm still not sure there.

Since nobody has said anything about an amp, is it really not necessary for the type of rig that I want, or just nobody has any suggestions?

TIA



I just heard that HD5 has gapless playback, too. Probably the best one for you.
IMO an amp is unnecessary at the instance. It will ruin the portability(Kinda) of the DAP. I think it's better to invest the money in better phones.
 
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