It depends on how much compression you want to use. In theory you can store 10,000 MP3's on a 40gb, probably about 5,000 AAC's, and about 1000 WAV's. Some folks feel using AAC (Apple's proprietary format) results in no real loss in quality, while MP3's are quite a step down. WAV files are for the purists (like me) who believe that lossy compression of any sort is intolerable. It's worth trying the three formats out on the same song and deciding for yourself. As for tips & trips you're best to check out the iPod Lounge and do some reading, plenty there to take in. http://www.ipodlounge.com/
I haven't tried the Shure's, I use Grado SR60's cuz they're comfortable, fold flat in my laptop bag, and cost ~$50. Wonderful invention, you won't regret it! Best, Jeff
I am using Apple lossless format on my 40gb and think it should hold approx 1,700 tunes or so. You can always move songs/artists/etc to and from your computer, which is nice as well.
I tried the Shure e3c's and were not impressed. I will be honest, I didn't give them the week, nor did I need to. When you insert them into your ear and you get the "suction" to block out exterior noise it also "plugs" your ear. As in the same feeling/sound as when you are underwater. Also, when you swallow, walk, etc. you hear your bodily noises. Not too audiophile to me, at least not for the $$$.
I bought the Grado SR325's and have only been smiling since. They are NOT noise cancelling, so you will have to determine what is better for you. However, I travel and often find myself in a hotel room at night, these are simply awesome, yet still allow you to hear if the phone rings, etc.
As stated above, it depends. If you store music uncompressed you can store about 70 albums. If you use Apple's loseless compression, then double that to 140 albums. The various AAC or MP3 formats can store even more.
Apple Lossless and Sure E3c's for me. Make sure and try the different earpieces that come with the Sures. I didn't like the rubber tips, but the foam work great.
AAC files are actually smaller than MP 3 files, and are better quality. If you digitize your CD's using this compression method you should theoretically (depending on the length of songs you are digitizing) be able to store 10,000 songs on a 40 gig iPod. Apple lossless encoding is a different thing entirely, and is bit for bit an exact copy of your CD,
WAV files are useless and do not have a place in this application. there is no advantage, sound quality wise, of wavs over losslessly compressed files. if you decide that you want no loss in quality, just use lossless compression to save some space and give yourself a lot more room for more music!
I have the 40GB iPod with 5.4 days worth of music (1900 songs), the bulk of which are 320kbs VBR MP3's with some 128kbs and 256kbs MP3's as well as a few in Apple Lossless encoding, all of which uses only 12GB of capacity.
I primarily use it for air travel and I've found sound quality to be fine for that purpose. I use etymotic ER6 earphones (same idea as the Shure's) which work quite well for isolation on planes. Audiofranj is correct, you do hear body noises more clearly with earphones - the first time I ate an airplane pretzel with the etymotics in, I thought my head was exploding. However, I found the sound to be much better than Bose noise cancelling headphones supplied by American Airlines.
Ultimately, the question is what you are planning to use it for.
Ear phones for a plane ?
I would suggest the Sony noise canceling headphones - a bit bulky, but the best of the lot.
I owned the Sony liked them, read the Bose propaganda, bought the Bose, listened to them and then returned them. Sonics were not near as good as the Sony.
A friend suggested the ER6's, I then bought them. They were ok, but did not fit well into my ear, plus the sonics were not as good as the Sony. They went back in less than 3 days
Just bought the Shure e3c's, in addition to not being fun to have them stuck in your ear and listening to a pretzel being chewed, the sound was by far the worst of the entire group. They went back last week.
When I go on a plane or can handle the bulk of the Sony, I listen to the Sony. When I need something light weight when exercising or just don't want the bulk of the Sony, the Apple headphones sound are good enough.
Hope that helps
I only have a measly 20 GB iPod, but it holds about 3700 songs @ 192kHz AAC/MP3, and for listening to earbuds is fine for me.
I also use mine a lot on planes, and I find the Sony MDR-NC11 active noise canceling earbuds to be great for planes! They cut out the drone of the engines, leaving a much quieter background, so I can listen to music at much lower volumes
saving my batteries for the return trip, and these are small enough to fit into the front pocket of my iPods padded case.
The first point is that the 40GB is reduced to around 37GB in terms of available space-the difference is due to utilising the software etc to make the thing run.
My 40GB iPod is full and it holds 9163 songs which is around 28 days of continious music using AAC.
I am using the Etymotic ER4-P earphones with my IPOD. The midrange is excellent & the highs are very clear. I was using the Grado SR80 headphones. They also sounded great but are bigger to carry around. Also the Grados didn't play as loud as the Etymotic. Too much noise. The Grados IMO have better bass than the ER4-P. But the mids on the ER4-P are more detailed. I tried the ER6's and didn't like them. I would have stayed with my SR80s over the ER-6s. Once I heard the ER4-Ps I decided it was worth the improvement. I now can keep my IPOD volume at about 50% and hear everything fine.
I am using the AAC at 320. I originally recorded a few songs at 128, 192 & 328. I prefered the 320 and recorded at that setting. The 320 setting also reduced the number of songs I can record substatially but I was able put all my favorite CDs onto the IPOD. The AIFF uses too much space & will allow about 1000 songs. You can get information on the internet from Apples site. They bass the number of songs on an average song length of 3 1/2 minutes if I remember correct but I am not sure.
I have a 40gb Ipod and Shure e5c with the custom integrated ear molds. Absolutely amazing. The earmolds require a little work in that molds must be made from your ear canal...but this turned out to be a breeze. Take a look here:http://store.yahoo.com/earplugstore/cusfitearmol1.html
My Ipod currently has 1100 songs in Apple Lossless Format and is pretty much full. If you are willing to use a compressed format you can hold a ton more...but it won't sound as good.
Also, I have a direct AUX input into my car stereo. Very nice to have 1100 of my favorite songs on tap. If you want the best sonics...DO NOT use an FM modulator. Run the iPod directly into the stereo.
I use the iPod exclusively in the car where stereo information is of little importance. Storing the files in any mono format will double an iPod's capacity.
Onyhwy61: If mono in your car sounds as good as stereo...you need to look into how great a car system can be.
It just isn't important to me in a car.
The 60Gb iPod (with photo capabilities) went on sale today.