Mix: Japan iTMS, iPod thief, iRiver H10, Apple China | iLounge News

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Mix: Japan iTMS, iPod thief, iRiver H10, Apple China

Apple inadvertently sold albums on its new Japanese iTunes Music Store for a fraction of the intended 1,500-yen price. Due to an error, customers reportedly bought albums for 50 yen each.

One UK iPod thief made the mistake of bringing in the stolen device to a Nottingham-based Apple reseller where the iPod’s owner worked as the manager.

iRiver’s 5GB H10 beat out the 20GB iPod, iPod mini and iPod shuffle for Best MP3 Player Technology in the 2005 Semiconductor Insight Awards.

Amidst slow iPod and Mac sales in China, Apple has launched a “significant personnel reshuffle” among the management of its operations in the country.

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Comments

1

A friend of mine has the iRiver H10.  It does have a decent feature-set, but he candidly admitted that he’s never used some of them.  That and that he wishes he’d bought a mini instead…

Oh well, I guess the semiconductor insight awards don’t put a lot of emphasis on implementing a few things very well versus a lot of things not so well.

Posted by dethbrakr in Tacoma, WA on August 24, 2005 at 12:54 PM (PDT)

2

I wonder what the semiconductor award is based on.  I’ve used the iRiver H10, and it is a great player, but still doesn’t hold a candle to the iPod, or the iPod mini.

The color screen is a big plus, but the scroll pad is no way to scroll through 1200 songs! It’s garbage compared to the iPods scroll wheel. That alone puts the H10 a big step behind the iPod mini.

Posted by ShadowT77 on August 24, 2005 at 1:10 PM (PDT)

3

Sorry, but I find even a click wheel is a pain in the rear when having to scroll through 9,300 songs on my 40GB 4G. Sometimes it would’ve been better to have the ability to scroll the alphanumerics first, select a letter, THEN scroll for the artists or song titles starting with that letter.

And as hard as it is for me to believe…I even actually MISS the search function of my Nomad Zen. I actually used it for the first time in ages a couple of days ago, and I was shocked at how easy it was to actually FIND what I wanted. The interface is still a messy proposition in general, but actual navigation was reasonably fast, and unlike the iPod where it’s easy to spin right on past what I’m looking for, the Zen actually pinpoints to what I want, even if it takes way too many button pushes for comfort.

Posted by flatline response on August 25, 2005 at 12:02 AM (PDT)

4

WOOT!!! 9,300 songs on ur 40 gig? how big’s ur file? 96kb? thats a real waste of technology.

to fully appreciate music or atleast the ipod, music should usually be encoded atleast 192 or 256kbps for mp3 or else no matter how good the mp3 is the sound would still be crap. i encode 320kbps

Posted by ThatsMyJazz on August 25, 2005 at 6:00 AM (PDT)

5

You’re scrolling through 9300 songs?  There is an artist/album/song hierarchy for a reason, you know…

I have around 4000 songs and can get to any one of them in a couple of seconds.

Posted by m. sherman on August 25, 2005 at 6:21 AM (PDT)

6

Admittedly 10000 on a 40 is a lot. But to recommend anything above 256 is obsurd. Anyone who users CBR is a ##### unless they are using 128, or perhaps 192. For best sound results, use VBR,—aps. Almost perfect sound reproduction with no insanely huge files.

Not sure of the exact figures, but I’m pretty sure the resulting file is no larger than a CBR 192. You are wasting precious space at those levels, I wouldn’t re-encode, but I would re-rip if possible.

Posted by silver_haze20 on August 25, 2005 at 7:11 AM (PDT)

7

there are differences between sound quality and even obvious differences even at high encoding compared to cd quality. its either that or the headphones/canal earphones used are not capable enough. dun ever use normal earphones, they are useless.

Posted by ThatsMyJazz on August 25, 2005 at 7:35 AM (PDT)

8

the 5/6GB H10’s are pretty nice and I’d take it over just about any other micro-hdd player including the ipod mini myself

don’t really care for the 20GB version of te H10 myself though, lacks a bit too much compared to my H120…

Posted by david on August 25, 2005 at 12:18 PM (PDT)

9

I don’t know why audiophiles listen to iPods in the first place. the whole point of an iPod is to store a bunch of music in one place. if I want “perfect sound” I’ll listen to a CD on my Denon stereo. for me, the iPod is about convenience, and 128kbps AAC sounds fine if I’m listening to it on the bus or at work

Posted by Lawrence Mikkelsen in New Zealand on August 25, 2005 at 9:35 PM (PDT)

10

True, but not everyone uses their CDs. They are more for archival purposes. My PC is a media centre. Everything I own, is on it. I don’t need near perfect CD sound when I’m on the move like you as theres almost constantly background noise. However, when in my room, I use line out into my separate amp and TDL speakers. Either this, or my PC. And thats why I encode at said levels. Because I don’t like to have to swap out CDs to listen to them, not only because its a hassle but because I don’t want to damage the original material…

And thats why I encode at said levels and use an iPod. Well, I picked an iPod because its just so easy, 3 clicks to any song you want. And it works seamlessly with iTunes…

Posted by silver_haze20 on August 26, 2005 at 1:00 AM (PDT)

11

That’s true enough that not everyone uses their CDs after they’re ripped…but where was it said that it applied to me? All I said was I have 9300 songs on my iPod.

(Well I see the iPod-as-“audiophile”-device snobs are at it again. Pretenders.)

PERSONAL NEWSFLASH: no matter how anyone sugarcoats it, the iPod is marginal IMO as a premier SQ DAP. Even with lossless. And even if Stereophile says it’s so. ESPECIALLY if Stereophile says it’s so (actually they only sort-of heaped on the praise…for all their rantings and gushings they still didn’t award it their highest class rating).

So now I guess I have to defend myself:

AS FOR FORMAT:

For starters, I’ve found I dislike MP3 files as a format, PERIOD, even with VBR, hot soundcard (TerraTec DMX 6Fire) and the latest codec of the week. For me, to get satisfactory quality with MP3s the bitrate has to be far too high to be worth the capacity tradeoff. And while MP3 has improved over the years, it’s SQ in small file form still is not there for me. With the size of my CD and LP library, 40GBs is WAY too small as it is.  For my portables, everything I do was either 160kbps WMA (for the Zen/iRiver world), and AAC when I switched over full-time to the Apple side (The bitrate choice I use for a rip is a judgement call: 96kbps for marginal quality source material up to 320kbps for more structurally complex and detailed original content…everything else falls in between, usually at 128kbps or 192kbps for better original material).

AS FOR USAGE PATTERNS:

Regardless of bitrate or chosen digital file format, I’ve RARELY in the past listened to any of these rip formats through my home audio listening rig, and that isn’t going to change in the future; straight CD-A, SACD, DVD-Audio, occasional DAT (yes, I’ve still got one of those) or vinyl (still my preferred) are the ONLY sources I use there.  Listen (no, abuse) my Martin-Logans and Paradigms with my iPod when I have a glorious Naim CD5x at my disposal? Or my super capable Denon DVD-3910? Or even my old standby warhorse Denon DCD-1650?  Yeah, right. Even my Denon CDR-W1500 audio burner is preferrable.

And even when I’m on one of my computers, I rarely use any of these ripped files even there, at least through speakers.  My general rule is that all the compressed audio I’ve created is for the portables, and only then on-the-go. For 30 years I found I didn’t need a media center…after a trying to use iTunes as a controlling player to build around, I found I didn’t miss much in those three decades. And MusicMatch (for the WMAs) is only marginally better for listening.

Through trial and error, I feel lossless and near lossless is a waste of HD space for a portable device for the way I use them, not to mention a heavier drain on the battery. On the move, capacity is THE key to me, since IN PUBLIC I NEVER seek to use cans with anything that comes close to a perfect isolated seal. Given that, what’s the point in using high bitrate rips?

So given my iPod usage patterns, I have ZERO issues with 128kbps AAC files, and only some minor quibbles with 96kbps rips.  When there’s a lot of ambient background noise that I have to listen for, generally high bitrates doesn’t matter a hill of beans.  When I’m out and about in such an environment, or in the workshop, the music coming off my 4G iPod only has to sound reasonably satisfactory, especially when considering that it’s NOT even the best-sounding DAP I own.  Or even the second-best, for that matter.  As for the iPod in the car: since my first attempts I refuse to use the iPod with my car stereo (direct interconnect into the Eclipse HU via M2M miniplug extention); with compressed formats the normally glorious Focals sound like so much thinned-out crap. And with lossless, again the HD’s too full with too little content. I already have a 6 disc in-dash changer; why should the iPod in essence try to mimic that?

For me, portable capacity and convenience is the name of the game here, not pure sonic quality; I don’t hear it from the iPod even in the most ideal conditions, so why should I come to expect it at all?  So for now, 9300 AAC songs is what I currently have on the 4G, with STILL another 2800 CD titles or so yet to rip. Not to mention the LP collection to record…

(whew)

Posted by flatline response on August 27, 2005 at 1:20 AM (PDT)

12

“You’re scrolling through 9300 songs?  There is an artist/album/song hierarchy for a reason, you know…”

Amazing as it sounds, 9300 songs generates A LOT of artists as well, especially if one rips a lot of compilations.  Right now, I have 1247 seperate ARTISTS listed in iTunes on the computer for just over 11,000 songs; the ratio on my 4G’s HD ain’t all that much better. And all this with really tight ID3 editing to weed out duplicate artist entries.

Posted by flatline response on August 27, 2005 at 1:32 AM (PDT)

13

Posted the last one too soon…

I meant to add: occasionally I’ll search for a specific song title (mainly because I’ll brain fart and forget who in blazes the artist was). It’s THEN when 9300 songs is a pain.

Posted by flatline response on August 27, 2005 at 1:35 AM (PDT)

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