So the new iPod shuffle is meant to hold 240 songs. Not bad going – definitely more than enough music for a trip to the gym or the daily commute.
I just hit ‘autofill’ for the first time out of curiosity to see what I’ve got in my collection as I know I am guilty of just listening to the same five bands over and over. iTunes has decided that my shuffle can actually hold 463 songs. It’s busy copying them across as I type. (Sidenote – dear lord it’s taking a long time! The old iPod could have copied my entire collection of 4000+ songs over the firewire connection in the time it’s taking to update 400+ songs via USB2)
This discrepancy confused me somewhat till I had a look at what quality I’ve been importing my songs in on: turns out, I’ve been using 64kbps. Yes, that’s right, half the 128kbps that Apple recommend and use to work out how many songs your new iPod can hold. Here’s the kicker – I never noticed this supposed drop in quality and would still be ignorant it if weren’t for the silly way my brain remembers odd numbers and facts.
So I have crap hearing in the upper range and never made any claim to being an audiophile but really, it might be worth bearing in mind importing at lower rates if you want to get more music on your mp3 player. The average person probably isn’t going to notice the difference. And a true audiophile is not going to be listening to music on a shuffle with Apple’s earbuds anyway.