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Reviewed by: Carl Nelson [07.21.05]
Manufactured by: Sorell

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Audio Quality

I could easily listen to a couple songs on the SF2000, and write a paragraph saying that it sounds "good" or "fine" or whatever. But if you read our site regularly, you know we're not like that. We want to give hard, objective results whenever possible.

In the case of MP3 players, we can use RMAA to determine audio quality. Our testing method was this: Record the test tone as a 24 bit, 96 kHz WAV file, encode it to WMA 192 kHz, and play it back on various devices, testing in 16 bit, 44.1 kHz mode.

To give a wide range of results, I tested various devices I had around the lab:

  • My personal MP3 player, Creative MuVo Slim 512MB
  • A cheap China MP3 player that barely works anymore (it drains batteries like a mofo)
  • A PC equipped with onboard sound (Intel Azalia, using a Realtek ALC880 codec)
  • A PC equipped with a Creative Audigy 2 soundcard

All test runs were repeated to ensure consistent results. All EQs and other effects were disabled. The recording device was a Creative Labs Audigy 2 ZS. Windows Media Player 10 was used to play the files on the PCs.

Since the test format is compressed, even the high end Audigy 2 should be on an equal level to the MP3 players. Also, we had to drop the stereo crosstalk test, since the results were skewed by the compression.

RMAA uses a word-based scale to describe performance. We translated these words to a scale of 1-6; 1 being "Very Poor" and 6 being "Excellent". In addition to that, we'll show the spectrum graph results of the SF2000, and the China MP3 player, to show you want a difference can be had by spending a bit more money on your player as opposed to getting the cheapest one you can find.

Frequency Response

Noise Level

Dynamic Range


IMD + Noise

Next Page: (Conclusion)