I have updated both my i-Tunes and i-Phone recently and have 10.06.0.40 and iOS 5.1 installed.
I note that the audible software is licensed by Apple from a company called Audible when I look at "About i-Tunes" under the Help menu in i-Tunes. I would suggest that if a problem exists, these are the people who would be able to resolve it, at the request of Apple of course.
I am using Windows XP operating system, therefore i-Tunes has been adapted by Apple to run on my machine compared to a Mac.
My music files are in AAC format and not MP3.
Like everybody else here, I have noted a degradation in the quality of music in terms of audible THD, in both bass and mid-range in the last 6 months. I have been listening to both Mumford and Sons and Chris Isaak and male vocals on both are distorted. There are specific tracks which really show up the THD.
I have tried to be objective and to isolate the source of the THD:
- i-Tunes with and without Sound Check > No THD improvement.
- i-Tunes Sound Enhancer at low-mid-high position >No THD improvement.
- i-Tunes with and without the Equalizer.
- Reduction in i-Tunes pre-amp signal (left hand slider) using i-Tunes Equalizer. Set to Manual I noted big improvement in THD at - 6dB or lower.
- Variation in specific frequencies of the pre-amp signal, using i-Tunes Equalizer. Set to Manual I noted big improvement in THD by reducing -6dB to frequencies of 500hz or lower.
Conclusion: The results of my crude test would suggest that the preamp signal has been boosted and is saturating/clipping causing audible THD. Why? Possibly because i-Tunes is a common platform for all Apple products and there is different audio hardware and drivers in each product, notwithstanding music equalizers in each product. The i-Tune preamp settings are possibly a compromise - not a good one - for all their products giving rise to the THD noted by everybody. It is difficult to believe Apple is not aware of the problem but resolving the issue for all their products would probably be difficult and costly? Come on Apple, come clean with your customers and remember i-Tunes put you where you are today and generates massive sales for you!
Just to supplement what I said before, my Ipa2, 3gs and 4s all have awful audio now through headphones (speakers are fine) BUT music on my mac itunes is still perfect, so this is obviously an iOS 5 only problem. I think someone said Apple don't read these forums much. I put a feedback form in online to outline the problem - bugs/problems is a category.
I think we all need to put in a feedback form to get there attention, although as some of you state, surely they must know already??
Hey all, have found an EXCELLENT replacement for the stock iOS player, until Apple address the issue. It's almost identical to the stock one in UI and brings your library up automatically, has NO audio distortion (at least for me) and has useful lyrics and 'Queue' playlist features.
It's called: Music+ - Music Player with queue and lyrics finder
By Fedry Kemilau
Itunes store link as I had some difficult finding it just by searching the name, not sure why:
Holy s##t Batman!! I think you may have cracked it. Just tried it on a very distorted track (tho it's iTunes option volume is not at 100%) and it sounded way better, ok back to the mac for a little testing will post what I find. A huge pat on the back for fmc159 this maybe the audio fix we all desperately needed but b4 I jump the gun will test heavily.
It's definitely just an issue with the stock audio player. For instance using the player I suggested above works great (through headphones and 30-pin connector, both of which produce awful quality with stock player), as do other (less UI friendly) 3rd party players like goodplayer and avplayer. But some 3rd party ones obviously use the same, built in audio code as the stock player, for instance the new shazam player app sounds exactly the same as the stock one.
So the app I suggest is a great fix for now, but as RogueRaptor points out, it can't use any itunes customisations of songs, such as boosting volume to 100% or customising the song start or finish time.
Ok short test on headphones only - grado 600, sennhiesser hd25, will put it thru the hi fi later.
If you've read any of my post b4 you will see all of my recordings are either Wav, or apple lossless and I've always pushed the iTunes options volume all the way to 100% this is set for all of my music. Then ios5 came along and destroyed all that, well not anymore I can 100% confirm that this app not only works, all of my recordings are set at 100% in iTunes options volume and sounds fantastic, just like b4 the ios5 update. The GUI is the same but better, and also this app shows just how much the stock player is broken.
I Cannot put into words how happy I'am now that the recordings sound how they should do and also the this app has got rid of the awful EQ apple had put on the stock player the baselines are now solid and tuneful and I don't have to use all the phone volume to make it sound loud it's basically what I had b4 ios5.
My stock player has now been replaced as this app and fmc159 knowledge of getting it has solved my problem plus we all now have the evidence we needed to confront apple about their s##t broken stock player
fmc159 if your ever near Norwich, uk let me know thru this thread because I want to buy you lots of beer.
Thank you! And one more thanx for your guidance!
But Mr Apple. There are many many expensive iPod Touch and iPhone without music enjoyment with your torsion player. The original iPod is the best way to hear music in the world. What's goin' on by the iOS devices?!
A week before I was thinkin about buy a Samsung (or something else) to hear perfect my music collection by the way. So, think about it!
One more thanks to fmc159!
1. My i-Tunes 10.5 and 10.6: work-around
My i-Tunes audio quality is nearly back to normal by reducing the built-in i-Tunes equalizer slider setting by -6dB. You can also tweak the equalizer lower frequencies to attenuate the signal as desired.
2. iMy OS5 work-around:
My work-around on my i-Phone for the iOS5 issue was to install a app called "Equalizer" by Audioforge, which has a great "auto-equalizer" function to prevent clipping and distortion. You can see the preamp automatically decreasing and increasing the dB levels to find the optimum level for each track. There is a dB and green-yellow-red dipslay to show you the signal strength being changed.
It's not free and not totally intuitive (around US$3 or UK£2) but after 15 minutes of getting to understand it, was worth the few bucks to get around the iOS5 distortion issue. I can now listen to my large, and expensive (far more than $3!), music collection at the quality it deserves. via my very discerning Audeo Phonek buds, or AKG 701 cans when playing my i-Phone collection through my Onkyo amp.
I am sure there are many work-arounds for both issues until Apple finally get around to accept and resolve the problems they created.
PS. Is it just me, or does music ripped from CDs have far more distortion than direct i-Tunes store music downloads, when it is played back using the i-Tunes player? Ideas and solutions would be greatly appreciated.
Right ok after further test it is apparent that the iTunes options volume control has no effect on the volume using the Music + app so if you want to make the music louder without the distortion follow my instructions a few pages back it might seem a long process but it's very simple and it works tested side by side with stock player and music+ app. If you need any help just ask via this thread. Music+ in my opinion is better than the stock player but I've returned to stock because I can adjust the volume and squeeze a bit more volume out of the music b4 it hits distortion.
I recently bought my 4s and i cant help but notice the awful bass distortion. I use an amp for my phone paired with the JH16s and i cant help but notice that the eq is totally off i thought it was just me but when i let my sister listen to it, btw she is 12 and knows nothing what so ever about audio quality she can tell me that the music sounds distorted (all my files are AAC) also when i tried it on my desktop, it sounds fine whats up with apple ?? And is there an fixed solution to this, or they gonna gay about some more??
I have written directly to Apple on this issue more than once but to no avail.
The only way I managed to fix it was by installing the "Equalizer" app by Audioforge. It automatically reduces the iOS5 preamp signal to an optimum level.
Suggest you give Equalizer a try. The app isn't free but for its low cost, it saved my music collection.
Hope it helps.