Yesterday, there were jitters at the Yerba Buena Center for the Arts for Apple's media event that the company would discontinue the iPod Classic ($249) without providing a direct replacement. No worries, however, as the seventh-generation 160GB machine remains in the line, unchanged--and that's a good thing. It sounds awfully nice, for a portable device.
I can tell you this: The 160GB Classic smokes my reliable, but ancient, 15GB third-generation iPod. Loaded with identical files, the 160GB has better defined, deeper bass and it has a clearer overall sound with my Monster Turbine Copper in-ear headphones.
Better, much better than Classic sound is available for a lot more money. The Hifiman HM-801 is the current state-of-the-art portable music player, but it has a state-of-the-art price, it's $790! Read my blog post to learn more about the HM-801.