I'm curious about this too. How does it work? Does one simply plug the ipod into the receiver? I'm in the process of buying a new receiver and will probably pick up an ipod since most of my music is now digital and not on CD's.
Similarly, I have toyed with the idea of buying a 300-disc carousel CD player, for this reason. I have somewhat decided against this, though, as I also enjoy portable music, and carrying that many Cd's with me is just not feasable.
I've been wanting to get an iPod, and I beleive it would be quite simple to play your music through a home theater this way. All you need is one of these: Y-Adapter.
Connect the corresponding RCA stereo audio cables to the adapter, and to the CD input (or other similar input) on your reciever, and you're good to go. It should operate similar to your CD player.
And if you don't want to have to get up to change the song, use this Navipod IR Remote
I dont use an iPod, but I use my iBook and my Rio MP3 player on my H/K 230.
Its really nice btw. You can get that Y-Adapter like the one Mark has a link to. I made my own and used it for a while, then I when out and got a Monster Y-Adapter. I just got an extension adapter and it runs on the base boards and up to my bed, so I can have my tunes go through my Theater. I also bought another Yadapter for my living room. I like it a whole lot better than CD's because its easy to find your music. Only problem I would see with the iPod, or any MP3 player is the lack of a remote (you can get an adapter for the iPod though).
But yes I have done this before, Bob, and it works great
I use an iPod mini with my home theater system with excellent results. I have it hooked up with this and lay it on my coffee table. For best sound quality I recommend having the ipod volume all the way up. I use a similar hookup to the head unit in my car using the external "mp3" input jack on it.
What about sound quality? How do mp3's compare to real CD's? I have been reding up on high end CD players and CD transports etc and apparently the quaity of the CD player has a lot to do with the sound. Does the ipod come close in terms of quality? Most of my music is on my powerbook so I would really be using it a lot ....
I never thought of not having a remote being a problem, but I guess it would be a small problem. I like the Idea of be able to use random button on the Ipod. Be able to listen to some songs that I do not usually listen to because there is only one song on a cd i like.
Just use the same procedure you outlined (iTunes>preferences>Importing>Import) to choose the desired format, then find the tracks you want to re-rip in your Library. Right click, and rip away!
I rip everything to 320K AAC, but have on occasion re-ripped to MP3 just to see if it could be done. Cooler still, I took those MP3's and burned them to a CD so I could prove that my DVD player could in fact play MP3.
Nothing exciting to hard core MP3 types, but this is all new to me, and I am having a blast with it.
To further feed my inner-geek, I took the entire Led Zep catalog, re-ripped from 320AAC to 128K MP3, the burned all that to a CD.
One single CD that I can pop into my DVD player has the entire Zep catalog. And amazingly, it really didn't sound that bad. I was half expecting it to be unlistennable, but it really was not bad at all. I wouldn't want to subject those tracks to an A/B with the native CDs, but if I wanted to have a LZ party, that would but a great way to provide an uninterrupted Zep sountrack.
AAC is Apple's lossy perceptual coding compression scheme. I do not enough enough about how codecs work to explain the difference between it and MP3, but you will find great debate over which sounds better.
It works similar to MP3 in that it attempts to discard sounds that would be masked by other louder sounds, thus reducing the size of the resulting file.
I have not done any sort of serious comparison between the two with my iPod, so I really don't have an opinion. The guys at Stereophile seem to like 320K AAC, so I have sort of standardized on that. I have a 40g iPod, so at present storage space is not an issue.
There are some guys on the HTF (Vince Maskeeper for one) that could tell you a lot more about the differences than I can. I guess one important point is that pretty much ALL digital players can handle MP3, but I think only iPod can handle AAC?
I haven't done anything in the way of a scrupulous ABX test between the formats, but AAC at 128 kbps sounds about the same as mp3 at 192 kbps to me. AAC at 160 kbps and higher doesn't seem to add anything, so I agree with what others have said: AAC is probably a bit better at lower bit rates, but at higher bitrates it's a wash (I wouldn't expect AAC at 320 kbps to be superior to mp3 at 320 kbps). I encode everything as mp3 using CDex/Lame's -alt preset standard (variable bit rate), which I find to be the best size/quality compromise for my tastes, and that scheme gives me more than enough selection on my 15 GB iPod, plus it gives me files that are compatible with my car's Alpine mp3 player (otherwise, I might encode everything with AAC).
AAC encoding is part of iTunes (CBR only) and Nero. Nero may have a VBR implementation; I'm not certain. As far as playback, the iPods are the only portables that decode AAC, but most software players can handle the files natively or through plug-ins.
I burn MP3s from my PC to a CD-R, kepping them in MP3 format. I compress to 192kbps, so I fit about 100 songs on a disc. My DVD player plays MP3s. They sound great as background music, but any critical listening tests reveal exactly what MP3 is: dumbed-down CD sound.