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ron mexico

Is the iMod a ripoff?

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Hey all. I am new to this forum, so please be gentle.

I have read nothing but praise for the RWA iMod at head-fi. RWA's other products have received favorable attention elsewhere (e.g. SonicFlare, 6 Moons). So I am all ready to send my iPod to RWA for modding. Then, I spend a few minutes here and I am skeptical. So what's the deal.

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It seems stupid to me, because it makes it so you can't take the thing anywhere without an amp.

Agreed. I don't really see the point in this, especially considering you're probably going to end up getting a new iPod some time in the future. If you're made out of money, go for it, but I think the real advantage of having an iPod is that all you need is it and a pair of headphones. Why add to the bulk?

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It seems stupid to me, because it makes it so you can't take the thing anywhere without an amp.

Good point. But I listen to my iPod in primarily stationary settings. I need "portable" in the sense of "transportable" (room to room and home to office).

But the main reason I am considering it is:

1. I already own a 4G iPod;

2. I already have an amp (albeit the apparently craptacular PA2V2);

3. my iPod will be my primary source for the forseeable future; and

4. if $200 can get me a high quality digital source, then why not?

I really want to know if there are any iMod owners who are unhappy with their purchase. Could they not tell the difference between the modded and unmodded units? Any durability problems? Did they regret voiding their Apple warranty?

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you said you have a laptop from your other thread, so spend the money on a computer friendly stationary solution, then you can have your own cake and eat it.

i think hirsch has or had a regular ipod and the imod, if i remember correctly he said he heard a positive improvement on headfi.

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I'd say the imod isn't a ripoff, if you have an amp already that you really like. But don't get the imod before you love your amp. Personally, I think spending your ipod related headphone budget on the headphones is the way to go. If you have a $250 budget, get the um2s, $350, um3s, $750, ES2s, etc.

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I think the iMod is excellent - I use mine as a home source, for simplicity and convenience. All my music is computer based in ALAC, and I don't want to be tied to turning on the computer to listen to music. There is no high SQ alterative to the iMod at the total cost $400 pricepoint that allows you to dispense with the computer, so I think it does have a unique market.

Not only that, but as my iMod isn't being used as an iPod per se anymore, I won't be replacing it with a 'newer' iPod. I do intend to replace the internal hard drive with a 120G drive when they become available within the next few months. That will be another $200, but to get a 120G all in one source of high output quality, small size and not be tethered to the horrific AC in my apartment for $600 is still a very nice deal. It's also really nice to be able to take it from room to room - I have my main rig, and a bedside headphone system, and I enjoy the ability to switch so easily without having to double up on sources.

Regarding the comment 'it's still an iPod', that's true and then again it isn't. There is nothing to suggest that the digital pathways in the iPod are in any way bad, and indeed the fact that there is no S/PDIF going on anywhere in it isn't a bad thing at all. The DAC chip itself is well regarded. In taking the line output directly from the DAC, the entire iPod analogue stage is bypassed. I think it's fair to assume that the majority of what is wrong with the iPod from a SQ point of view is what happens to the signal after the DAC, not before it. The iMod has a very low noise floor as well, particularly running off its internal battery.

For an iPod iPod, I still have an old 3G 20G model that does me just fine for travelling...

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I dont care about the ipod stigma the imod is damned good it isnt a wadia but is spanks all the players I have here and is on par with a home player that is much more expensive. Of course this is on my Stax systems YMMV of course. Will be getting a good listen to the Saturn here soon.

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My views pretty much parallel TheSloth's. I actually have two 4G iPods, one of which has the iMod, so I can do comparisons when wanted. I definitely prefer the iMod when I'm running an amp, but the loss of the internal headphone amp is a pain for travel. Sometimes it's easier just to plug an IEM into the headphone out, which you lose with the iMod. I'm drooling over the idea of a 120G drive for the iPod. Maybe I can get by with just one if I can have enough space on it. A 500G iPod sounds about right for now, and would put a stop to the frantic "what can I get rid of" dilemmas I run into when making room for new music on an iPod...for a bit, anyway.

At this very moment, I'm running the unmodded iPod into a Stax SRM-X Pro/Lambda Pro combo, and it sounds pretty good. Just for the heck of it, I'll switch to the iMod right now...sound is a bit smoother, low end has a bit more impact. The background noise level is lower. Subtle, but it's a better sound. Switching back, the unmodded iPod simply isn't as transparent as the modded one. I was about to reiterate that this was subtle, but just hit a passage I listened to on the iMod that simply isn't as convincing on the iPod. I really wish I hadn't done that.

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I was at the HE show in NY yesterday and one of Vinnie's sources was a 5G iMod. To be released next month. Same as the 4G iMod, but the caps don't fit inside the slimmer case, so it now has to include a cable with a dock connector, as the caps are in the connector. The advantage is that the headphone out is left unchanged.

I was looking at Hard Disk upgrades for the 4G iPod, and it seems that the standard connector has changed since those days and none of the newer, larger disks support the old style connector (and there's no adapter). So if one wants a larger HD'd iMod (and the ability to upgrade the size later), it's 5G or nothing.

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I was at the HE show in NY yesterday and one of Vinnie's sources was a 5G iMod. To be released next month. Same as the 4G iMod, but the caps don't fit inside the slimmer case, so it now has to include a cable with a dock connector, as the caps are in the connector. The advantage is that the headphone out is left unchanged.

I was looking at Hard Disk upgrades for the 4G iPod, and it seems that the standard connector has changed since those days and none of the newer, larger disks support the old style connector (and there's no adapter). So if one wants a larger HD'd iMod (and the ability to upgrade the size later), it's 5G or nothing.

So Vinnie is finally offering a mod for the 5G Ipods now?

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In the next month or two Vinnie said it would be available.

So yes, you get the clean line out (though without the cable with the decoupling caps in it I doubt it would work properly) and the original headphone out/amp is preserved.

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I wonder if there are issues using it without the specified LOD? It would seem to me that if you used another dock, without the decoupling caps, that you could be feeding your amp a signal with large amounts of DC offset. That DC offset, then amplified could easily be headphone lethal. Hopefully when the mod is announced there will be more info about this. I can just see the newbs using their ALO Cryo Jumbo Blamo dock and cooking headphones right and left.

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I can just see the newbs using their ALO Cryo Jumbo Blamo dock and cooking headphones right and left.

did somebody mention audio line out?

3hats.jpg

DAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAMMMMNNNN!!

fukcing sweetest hats i've ever seen. camo 4 tha urban jungle yall, damn, fuck.

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I wonder if there are issues using it without the specified LOD? It would seem to me that if you used another dock, without the decoupling caps, that you could be feeding your amp a signal with large amounts of DC offset. That DC offset, then amplified could easily be headphone lethal. Hopefully when the mod is announced there will be more info about this. I can just see the newbs using their ALO Cryo Jumbo Blamo dock and cooking headphones right and left.

you are fooling yourself if you think ken won't make a super expensive dock specifically for the 5g imod. :P

with GIANT CAPS

an_cap_silver_01.jpg

FUCK YEAH O0

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you are fooling yourself if you think ken won't make a super expensive dock specifically for the 5g imod. :P

with GIANT CAPS

an_cap_silver_01.jpg

FUCK YEAH O0

Actually, as initially stupid as that seems, one could make a 'home audio' cable with caps like that for use with the iMod at home. It's a bit overkill, but it would sound better. Just have to match the value.

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well, actually, i doon't even know what the values of the caps in the imod are. i just wanted to post that awesome picture. regardless, using ~$800 capacitors with a $400 source is dumb.

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well, actually, i doon't even know what the values of the caps in the imod are. i just wanted to post that awesome picture. regardless, using ~$800 capacitors with a $400 source is dumb.

Agreed, but as far as I understand less esoteric film caps of the same value (less than 1uf I believe) will sound better than the black gate electrolytics as they are in the signal path. More like $40 in that case.

The iMod uses black gates for size reasons. I'm sure if Vinnie could use any cap he wanted he'd use film.

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While we're on the topic of line-outs for iPods, are iPod dock lineouts worth it? I'm in no financial shape to be purchasing an iMod for my iPod, but considering that it is now my portable source and bedtime source, would it be wise for me to purchase one of them? Obviously I'm looking to go as cheap as possible (insert random ALO joke here), so if you think it's worth it, from who should I be buying?

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While we're on the topic of line-outs for iPods, are iPod dock lineouts worth it? I'm in no financial shape to be purchasing an iMod for my iPod, but considering that it is now my portable source and bedtime source, would it be wise for me to purchase one of them? Obviously I'm looking to go as cheap as possible (insert random ALO joke here), so if you think it's worth it, from who should I be buying?

you could buy wire, a miniplug, and a ipod dock for like 10 bucks parts then make it yourself, or have someone make one for you. Should cost no more than 20 bucks made for one with say a reasonable neutrik jack and spc wire..

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you could buy wire, a miniplug, and a ipod dock for like 10 bucks parts then make it yourself, or have someone make one for you. Should cost no more than 20 bucks made for one with say a reasonable neutrik jack and spc wire..

That's a good point, but I don't know how to solder or anything like that, so it'd probably end up costing me more...blah...plus I have no time and I literally mean no time. Zero. Zip. Nada.

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