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News Creative announces "Xmod"

Discussion in 'Article Discussion' started by Da Dego, 5 Oct 2006.

  1. Da Dego

    Da Dego Brett Thomas

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  2. BioSniper

    BioSniper Minimodder

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    Interesting idea and I would love to see if it really does make as much of a difference as the marketing blurb would indicate. Would be great if Bit do a review (hint hint :p )
     
  3. mclean007

    mclean007 Officious Bystander

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    like everything else that claims to be able to restore badly encoded lossy music to its original quality, this will suck big time. The ONLY way to get acceptable playback quality from lossy music is to use a high quality encoder at high bitrate VBR settings (read lame --alt-preset standard / OGG Vorbis -q6 or above). Some would argue that lossless is the only way to go, and for a hi-fi based jukebox PC or for archival purposes, and given that HDD storage is so absurdly cheap these days, I'd be tempted to agree. For a portable stash, however, I'd sacrifice that tiny additional bit of quality (which will be lost on anything but top quality cans or with any hint of background noise anyway) for 2-4x the number of tracks.

    In short - unless you like your music mangled (hey, if you're the sort of person who cranks the bass up AND whacks the graphic equaliser to the max AND ignores the "tone bypass" switch AND hits the loudness habitually, on any piece of sound equipment you come into contact with, this might appeal), then save your $80 . Or spend it on a decent pair of headphones, which will make a far greater improvement.
     
  4. Matkubicki

    Matkubicki What's a Dremel?

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    While i doubt that this will be worth the $80 asking, it does have to be said that through a decent set of surround speakers the X-fi's crystalizer makes the music sound noticeably "better". It obviously isn't restored to "better than CD quality" or anything but it does help.
     
  5. DXR_13KE

    DXR_13KE BananaModder

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    at least it is better than apples soun...... er... wont this thing be able to be used on a IPod? hmmmmm smart move........ Creative just wants a peace of the pie.
     
  6. Lucidity

    Lucidity What's a Dremel?

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    Or they should just make their devices sound better and release tests that show how crappy Ipods sound. That's the one of the main reasons I will never buy an Ipod.
     
  7. DarkReaper

    DarkReaper Alignment: Sarcastic Good

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    It's attitudes like this I don't understand. You do know that iPods usually get good ratings in reviews for sound quality, right? Have you done side-by-side comparisons with an iPod and a Zen to hear the difference between them with the same file? Everyone knows the bundled iPod headphones are little white bits of plastic poo but with a small investment in a half-decent set of headphones my iPod now sounds very nice.

    It would be interesting to hear what difference this Xmod makes - has anyone with an X-Fi done a comparison with Crystallizer and CMSS-3D on and off?
     
  8. DXR_13KE

    DXR_13KE BananaModder

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    i think bit did one sometime ago.

    edit: here
     
  9. Yemerich

    Yemerich I can has PERSUADETRON?

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    It doesn't matter... Portable headphones sux big time.
     
  10. g3n3tiX

    g3n3tiX Minimodder

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    French review and pics of the Thingie. And nope, no battery. USB powered, or line in + power. Well adapted to laptops with crappy sound cards IMO.
     
  11. Zayfod

    Zayfod What's a Dremel?

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    As opposed to those headphones that are too large and heavy for one man to move... Could you possibly qualify your statement?

    As for the device, another one of their external sound cards prehaps, it's a bit of an oddity from the decription; with the potential of being quite pointless.
     
  12. wafflesomd

    wafflesomd What's a Dremel?

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    Originally Posted by Yemerich
    It doesn't matter... Portable headphones sux big time.

    Dude, no way! I am also a fan of saying things w/out supporting them!

    Especially completely untrue things!









    Yah, I have actually.

    Ipods themselves arnt bad players, their amp is just junk.

    The price doesnt really justify purchasing the feature-less player that it is.

    I have compared these players:

    Ipod 5 gen video
    Iriver h10
    Iriver h120



    Iriver h320
    Creative Zen Vision M
    Creative Zen Micro

    I dont buy all of these of course, I just borrowed them from ppl for a couple days.

    So far, Iriver is the clear winner.

    But there is one factor here.

    I use Rockbox on all of them (cept the creative players)

    I use rockbox on most of them becuase of its very nice EQ sound settings. A 5-band EQ, lowshelf and highshelf filters, cut-off freq.'s.

    The ipod just doesnt have the amp to put out the sound and power that is required to drive such headphones as the Sony MDR-V6's, or my Grado 325i's.

    Rockbox is not available for creative players, but isnt needed, as they do not need propraitary software, to easily transfer songs, as well as the irivers (though rockbox makes them sound astoundingly good).

    The creative players easily hold their own with our own custom sound settings.

    Try using any EQ with and ipods defualt firmware, it will mostly likely cut out around certain freq's. or distrt very easily.

    So pretty much, there are much, much better players, for alot less out there.
    People just like them becuase the GUI is simple, and they just dont care about sound quality, plus, its whats "in".
     
  13. Warrior_Rocker

    Warrior_Rocker Holder of the sacred iron

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    It would be nice to see some sort of dock style interface to get power out of the iPod IIRC it outputs about 5v on the dock connector. Although in creative's eyes obviously it is not meant only for the iPod, but it would be nice to see it draw its Audio and Power directly from the iPod to reduce cables and accessories you have to carry around. I am sure someone could make a DIY cable for around 5$, Also would be fun to see someone integrate the whole device inside a iPod dock.

    I could see myself wanting higher end and better quality audio in the home or studio. but I just cannot see myself not being able to put up with the sound and the apple headphones or 3rd party headphones when I am out and about.
     
  14. wafflesomd

    wafflesomd What's a Dremel?

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    You can make your own dock cable for the ipod.

    The ipod's dock connection has line-out pins and ground. This is what most stereophiles do, those who use amps of course. The signal is more pure this way, and not in anyway amped by the ipods weak excuse for an amp.

    I made a similar cable for my h10 recently (and also being the proud, and very first person to do this with an iriver h10) and I have sound output, left and right channels going to my headphone amp.
     
  15. Kudos

    Kudos What's a Dremel?

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    My thoughts are that this is just an EQ that you can't tweak, and possibly mclean agrees with me (not gonna put words in his mouth)... what happens when you hook this thing up to a CD player... does it make that sound better too?

    I doubt it. Get a good set of headphones for cheaper and forget the extra power requirements (be it battery or mains)
     
  16. zoot2boot

    zoot2boot What's a Dremel?

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    the crystalizer on x-fi s sounds noticeably worse to my ears.. it's just like a loudness button, little more treble, little more bass and hey presto, it's better. unless you're listening to it through a reasonable set of speakers or headphones.. then it just sounds shrill and boomy, losing all its definition.

    'hifi' brands have been trying to market such junk for over 50 years, and believe it or not, if creative found a way to recover information lost in the encoding of a mp3 they'd be up for a nobel prize and have just well and truly destroyed the precepts of information theory. this doesn't seem likely to me.
     
  17. HandMadeAndroid

    HandMadeAndroid That's handy.

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    So erm, we get crap quality music, at a higher price, hmmm are we being ripped off here?
     
  18. Warrior_Rocker

    Warrior_Rocker Holder of the sacred iron

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    Creative wants us to think that they have found the answer for making chicken sh*t into chicken salad... and like zoot2boot said. If Creative had really found the magic cure for bad audio? Would it really be selling for a measly 80$ when hi-fi can cost you in the range of hundreds?


    WHAT ARE YOU DOING CREATIVE? :eyebrow:
     
  19. Adnuo

    Adnuo Banned

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    Or, hey, you should remember it's not cool to hate Apple anymore :nono:. They're the cool ones now, amirite?

    Or just remember that the iPod actually has one of the highest sound qualities of any DAP available right now.

    As for the actual device, I love that phrase "restore lost sound". It's not restoring anything, it's screwing with the sound even further. Sometimes that's considered beneficial, i.e. a valve amp, but most of the time, and especially with digital products like this, it just further destroys the sound. It adds tinny highs and overpowering lows and washed out mids that absolutely trash the actual sound quality.

    The highest goal in music playback is to make it sound like the original recording source. You don't make something sound like the source by adding tons of EQ-ing (lolz, made-up word) and reverb. Pocket your $80 and save it until you can buy a decent set of cans. Or go buy a headphone amp.
     
  20. TMM

    TMM Modder

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    The 'Crystalizer' is no better then cranking up the bass and treble on an EQ, and CMSS is rubbish for music anyway (IMO). It'll be a gimmick
     
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