Audio Asylum Inmate davidcauthron's Personal (walkman type) System

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davidcauthron's Personal (walkman type) System
Last Update: September 23, 2001 at 08:16:19 IP Address:
Amplifier: (Don't laugh just yet) Compaq iPAQ 3630 handheld PC
Preamplifier (or None if Integrated): none
Speakers: Eytmotic ER-4s
CD Player/DAC: IBM 1Gig microdrive mounted in a low profile Silver Slider CompactFlash sleeve
Other Accessories/Room/Misc.:
Speaker Cables/Interconnects: Whatever good stuff exists in the Etymotic headphone wires
Music Preferences and Comments:
Music Used (Genre/Selections): I lean toward classical and jazz for critical listening, but I can appreciate all music that has merit behind it (which means no Brittney Spears or Country ;) )
System Goals/Comments: Well, what can I say. . . I needed something to listen to while I walk the streets of Hong Kong. Believe it or not, this has offered the best portable solution compared to lugging around a Sony ultra-portable CD player (which does not have the oomph to drive the ER-4ses alone) and an Airhead amp. Tried the ER-4P version as well to try and cope without the Airhead, but totally hated the sound.
System Strengths: Believe it or not, the iPAQ actually has an internal amp that is fantastic at driving the ER-4s 'phones! I use the Windows Media player format for better sound quality than MP3s and have some tracks totally uncompressed. The microdrive gives me a gig of storage for hours of music and the DACs, while no Wadia are reasonable! The whole thing fits in my pocket and gives me about 4 hours of music on a charge as well as keeping my schedule.
The IPAQ is actually dead quiet along with having a very powerful internal amp and the ERs blocks out all the noise of the Hong Kong subway.
System Weaknesses: Currently the software Windows Media player doesn't prebuffer much, so the MicroDrive sucks the life out of the battery. I've been experimenting with IPLAY which gives digital EQ (not needed) and fully buffers up the current song so the battery life jumps to 8 hours. iPLAY only plays MP3s which leave a bit to be desired sonically since they cut off everything above 16khz.
Video/HT System: Integrated
TV/Projector: Laughable, I know, but you can actually watch movies on this thing!

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