Value for money headphones for the masses (Part I)

One year ago I decided that I needed an upgrade on my headphones (Sony MH-1), so I bought Hifiman RE-400 to use with my Fiio X1. It was obvious from the first minute I used them that they were not for me. I noticed a total lack of bass (and trust me I am not a basshead!) that made my listening experience completely flat and boring. Having spent a noticeable amount of money for these in-ear monitors, I could not spend again a similar amount, so I decided to experiment with cheap Asian headphones, hoping to find my vfm.
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How to convert SACD ISO to dsf/dff files

SACD ISO support in media players is not a popular feature, especially when it comes to Linux audio. As of today the most popular solution is an MPD fork, a program not found by default in most of the Linux distributions (if you have an Archphile supported board however you can use the package I have created for that). If you have this type of files and you can’t currently use them, the best solution is to convert them to separate dsf or dff files.
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How to verify CD rips with AccurateRip database

When we need to verify the quality of a CD rip, one of the most powerfull tools we have is the AccurateRip database. Although I won’t go into details on how I rip my CDs (yes, I use EAC with wine :P), I will show you two easy procedures on how to verify a CD rip using AR database. First Method (Linux Native) All we need for the first method is whipper.
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DR14 T.meter - A tool to find the dynamic range of your music albums

Dr14 T.meter is an open source command line tool that computes the dynamic range of your music files. It’s a tool that I use in order to create reports for each of my FLAC albums I have in my music library. Installing it in Archlinux was pretty easy: yaourt -S dr14_tmeter In order to create a report for an album you need the following command: dr14_tmeter /path/to/album/ What is really nice about it is that you can use it recursively in order to create dynamic range repors for multiple albums at once:
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How to create spectrograms for audio files using sox

The use of spectrograms is one of the most accurate procedures in order to identify the quality of audio files. Let’s say that you were given an music album with 16/44.1 flacs and you want to see if the files included are actually redbook. One of the best tools I’ve found for that is sox. The installation in Archlinux is the following: pacman -S libsoxr In order to create a spectrogram for a specific flac file, you need the following command:
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Latest Rockbox 3.14 on Sansa Clip Plus

Sansa Clip Plus is one of the most popular portable audio players. Although sound wise there are much better devices nowadays (and the clip is discontiued), the combination of price/small form factor and overall performance made it an absolute value for money. Rockbox is an alternative firmware that supports various media players. I will not go into details about it, but you should definately give it a try if your device is supported.
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