One of the biggest shortcomings of the Apple iPod is the fact that it only supports a very limited number of audio formats, namely, AAC, MP3 and WAV. That’s a paltry three formats when other competing music players can support more than five formats. I have nothing against the AAC format that Apple developed. But I am really just much more comfortable with the other audio formats that I personally think sound much better. For example, I think that the FLAC lossless format is far superior to the Apple Lossless format. the logical solution would be to just get these competing players but I Apple’s good customer support and the iPod’s better resale value is something that I just cannot ignore.
What I have done instead is to install Rockbox on my 5G iPod. The Rockbox is basically an operating system replacement to the existing OS installed in various music players. The plug-in architecture of Rockbox means various features can be added to further enhance the capabilities of these players.
I’ll write about the other great features of Rockbox at some future time. Right now I am quite happy that with this firmware/OS replacement I can now load my favorite FLAC files on my iPod. These files have now been freed from my laptop. Even OGG files can now play in my machine. Nothing gives a smile to your face than to hear your favorite songs in lossless fidelity. My Tom Waits collection appreciates the upgrade.