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Dackzy

Before you buy amp and DAC + recommendations.

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Posted · Original PosterOP
19 hours ago, skooooooooooooooooooooooma said:

Thank you for the quick response Dackzy, I do meant satisfy by being cleaner and more detailed. I am assuming that I am going to hook the cables from the Soundblaster Z soundcard to the schiit stack? 

if you get the stack then you can connect it to your PC either via USB or optical. If you choose optical then yeah you can connect it to your soundblaster.

 


Before you buy amp and dac.  My thoughts on the M50x  Ultimate Ears Reference monitor review I might have a thing for audio...

My main Headphones and IEMs:  K612 pro, HD 25 and Ultimate Ears Reference Monitor, HD 580 with HD 600 grills, Focal Elex

DAC and AMP: Dual PCM63k tube DAC, RME ADI 2 DAC, Cavalli Tube Hybrid

Speakers: Genelec 8040, System Audio SA205

Receiver: Denon AVR-1612

Desktop: R7 1700, GTX 1080  RX 580 8GB and other stuff

Laptop: ThinkPad P50: i7 6820HQ, M2000M. ThinkPad T420s: i7 2640M, NVS 4200M

Feel free to pm me if you have a question for me or quote me. If you want to hear what I have to say about something just tag me.

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On 9/20/2018 at 1:08 PM, Dackzy said:

schiit magni 3 and schiit modi 2 uber, but keep in mind you will need RCA to XLR cables to connect the pre out from the magni 3 to a pair of HS7. Just keep in mind you can't connect a mic or a midi keyboard to these.

 

It isn't a must for you to go out and buy a DAC too, but you will see some improvement. The HD 6XX are very good headphones for their price, they are afterall the massdrop version of the HD 650, which already were good for their price. If you keep on using your onboard then you will need a 3.5mm to RCA cable and use the audio ports on the back of your PC. If you want to get a DAC, then I will highly recommend getting the Modi 2 Uber over the normal Modi 2, since it is less sensitive to a bad USB signal and overall cleaner, plus not a lot more than the normal one.

You should set windows volume to 100% and control the volume via the magni 3. Also there really aren't any headphone that is officially studio grade, all of this "Monitor headphone" is mostly marketing.

@Dackzy ‘s right on the money about “reference headphones... monitor headphones”. It’s marketing.  My coworker’s husband is a freelance sound engineer... and we have friends that work at CBC radio.  Sony MDR7506 are often found kicking around studios. They’re easy to fix. When I started messing around with headphones & shiny (Schiit Audio) things, I assumed they were “reference grade”. Nope... they just happen to be used a lot on sets (and someone probably bought them in bulk).

 

@skooooooooooooooooooooooma (Christ almighty, that’s a hellofa handle 🙂 )... I bought a Modi Multibit because I was curious whether it’d be superior to my HP Deskpro’s embedded Realtek audio (DAC/AMP chip embedded)... and that the Modi Multibit would be superior to the Modi 2 Uber (which has now been replaced by the Modi 3). Does it make a difference? I don’t know.

 

If you can afford buying an external headamp & DAC, go for it. If money’s tight, buy better headphones.

 

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Here's a question, anyone familiar with the Naim DAC-V1? Been demoing it at a retail store for hours on end and I'm in love. The bass on my LCD-2's never felt so deep or strong. The highs are so defined and the detail... omg... now about the price tag... just wondering if anyone else was considering one and found something similar? I have owned the schit Lyr 3 for a week before returning that lifeless ear piercing death amp then I went to a Deckard to hold me over but I can't get over the Naim... only thing else I am in love with is the Mcintosh mha100 and that's $2800 used on a good day...

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Hi I just bought Sennheiser 599 and I wanted to get a DAC for it (my budget is 100$ at most ). I was thinking about DAC Fiio E10K, it has LOTS of good reviews. What do you guys think? I want really good sound, thanks!

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On 11/16/2018 at 12:53 AM, AngelLV said:

Hi I just bought Sennheiser 599 and I wanted to get a DAC for it (my budget is 100$ at most ). I was thinking about DAC Fiio E10K, it has LOTS of good reviews. What do you guys think? I want really good sound, thanks!

I believe 599 is a 50 ohm headphone? Usually those kinds of headphone doesnt really need external amp / dac unless your motherboard is problematic in the first place

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Posted · Original PosterOP
3 hours ago, xtroria said:

I believe 599 is a 50 ohm headphone? Usually those kinds of headphone doesnt really need external amp / dac unless your motherboard is problematic in the first place

the impedance doesn't deside if a DAC and amp is useful or not. Sensitivity is the big player when it comes to how hard something is to power and the audio quality of the headphone also plays a big role when looking at if it is worth getting a DAC and amp.

 

On 11/15/2018 at 6:53 PM, AngelLV said:

Hi I just bought Sennheiser 599 and I wanted to get a DAC for it (my budget is 100$ at most ). I was thinking about DAC Fiio E10K, it has LOTS of good reviews. What do you guys think? I want really good sound, thanks!

I wouldn't get the E10k since the value and performance of it is rather bad, most of the good reviews are either old or by people that haven't tried a lot of gear. I also wouldn't recommend getting a DAC and amp for the 599, since the detail level of those isn't that amazing, so it would be a bit wasted if your onboard is ok.

And sorry for the late response I have been busy and still am, so I completely forgot everything about this.


Before you buy amp and dac.  My thoughts on the M50x  Ultimate Ears Reference monitor review I might have a thing for audio...

My main Headphones and IEMs:  K612 pro, HD 25 and Ultimate Ears Reference Monitor, HD 580 with HD 600 grills, Focal Elex

DAC and AMP: Dual PCM63k tube DAC, RME ADI 2 DAC, Cavalli Tube Hybrid

Speakers: Genelec 8040, System Audio SA205

Receiver: Denon AVR-1612

Desktop: R7 1700, GTX 1080  RX 580 8GB and other stuff

Laptop: ThinkPad P50: i7 6820HQ, M2000M. ThinkPad T420s: i7 2640M, NVS 4200M

Feel free to pm me if you have a question for me or quote me. If you want to hear what I have to say about something just tag me.

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2 hours ago, Dackzy said:

the impedance doesn't deside if a DAC and amp is useful or not. Sensitivity is the big player when it comes to how hard something is to power and the audio quality of the headphone also plays a big role when looking at if it is worth getting a DAC and amp.

 

I wouldn't get the E10k since the value and performance of it is rather bad, most of the good reviews are either old or by people that haven't tried a lot of gear. I also wouldn't recommend getting a DAC and amp for the 599, since the detail level of those isn't that amazing, so it would be a bit wasted if your onboard is ok.

And sorry for the late response I have been busy and still am, so I completely forgot everything about this.

I know, basically what i’m trying to say is that as far as I remember, the HD500 series doesnt need a lot of amplification

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On 11/21/2018 at 9:41 AM, Dackzy said:

I wouldn't get the E10k since the value and performance of it is rather bad

Can agree, it's just a power house, gets my 4XX to loud volumes ( but not painful ).
Sound quality probs is the same as any new ( ryzen/ intel 8/9gen ) low-end motherboard ( sounds exactly same as PC screen's headphone out w/ Nvidia GPU source ). If i knew that before getting it i would've purchased some amp/dac from ebay for 15-20$, would've been exact same quality if not better.

Also in fact it has more noise/crackling than motherboard. ( its not constant, but i notice some cracks from time to time that i never heard in any motherboard that reminds cable cracking, but it cannot be, because the 4XX stock cable is decent and if ASIO plugin is installed then its just nightmare,very intense noises appears from time to time but its not HW related, because i can just refresh the yt video or whatever and it gets fine ). 


BUT. There's alot of people claiming who has decent cans that even upgrading from E10K to Schiit Stack / O2+ODAC etc makes not much difference. So the amp/dac probs is just another audiofool thing ( ofcourse more expensive ones does perfom better, but human hearing is far too limited to notice it, its like saying that you can hear difference from 16bit 48000hz to 24bit 192000hz ), same as cables, many ppl believes that cables make improvement/difference and swears it, while in reality it makes no difference. What i believe that amp/dac can make difference in lows, but nothing more ( excluding the EQ effect ). 

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Posted · Original PosterOP
On 11/25/2018 at 9:31 PM, Exaco said:

BUT. There's alot of people claiming who has decent cans that even upgrading from E10K to Schiit Stack / O2+ODAC etc makes not much difference. So the amp/dac probs is just another audiofool thing ( ofcourse more expensive ones does perfom better, but human hearing is far too limited to notice it, its like saying that you can hear difference from 16bit 48000hz to 24bit 192000hz ), same as cables, many ppl believes that cables make improvement/difference and swears it, while in reality it makes no difference. What i believe that amp/dac can make difference in lows, but nothing more ( excluding the EQ effect ). 

this is simply not true at all, be extremely careful with statements like these that you just pull out of the blue. DACs and amps are overall more sublte upgrades compared to headphones, but they are certainly upgrades. A high quality DAC and amp will be cleaner and offer more detail if your headphones are good enough, if you want to see a mindblowing change then just try and compare onboard to a RME ADI 2 DAC, it is insanely clean and clear and even on cheaper headphones like the K612 or DT 880 it is a instant upgrade over basically anything that's cheaper than it. 

 

You need to train your ears for it to be somewhat easy for you to hear the differences between different DACs and amps, but it is most certainly possible, for a untrained ear some things will sound the same even though to the trained ear they will sound different. From my testing with friends and family then the average person that doesn't have a trained ear will mainly notice if something is cleaner sounding, but not that there is a bit more detail to the guitar or more detail to the vocals. Something can also be more detailed and not sound cleaner, but something can also sound cleaner but be less detailed because it smoothes the sound.

 

How many bits a DAC can decode isn't a sign of quality, like you seem to imply that it is, it is the quality of how well it can decode it. It's like you can have a song with a bad master but in 24/192 and then you can have the same song with a good master but it is 16/48 and it will sound.

 

No DAC should EQ anything, honestly if you need to EQ your headphone then you bought the wrong headphone. Doing a EQ to a headphone will generally raise the THD and you can also get to experience bloated bass. At the very most do a small 2-3dB adjustment somewhere, but all headphones will react different to EQ.

 

it is 100% fair if you don't hear the differences or find it worth it, each to their own and there are plenty of people where it simply isn't worth it.


Before you buy amp and dac.  My thoughts on the M50x  Ultimate Ears Reference monitor review I might have a thing for audio...

My main Headphones and IEMs:  K612 pro, HD 25 and Ultimate Ears Reference Monitor, HD 580 with HD 600 grills, Focal Elex

DAC and AMP: Dual PCM63k tube DAC, RME ADI 2 DAC, Cavalli Tube Hybrid

Speakers: Genelec 8040, System Audio SA205

Receiver: Denon AVR-1612

Desktop: R7 1700, GTX 1080  RX 580 8GB and other stuff

Laptop: ThinkPad P50: i7 6820HQ, M2000M. ThinkPad T420s: i7 2640M, NVS 4200M

Feel free to pm me if you have a question for me or quote me. If you want to hear what I have to say about something just tag me.

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On 11/27/2018 at 3:02 PM, Dackzy said:

.......

I agree, but imo these DAC/AMP's would be more beneficial for Speakers rather than Headphones since it bounces the sound alot more and it can be felt too, so in short the improvement is less limited by hearing.

Currently i have E10K which imo is really standard HW ( probs same as any mid/high end motherboard ), i would love to try something like O2 or Magni 3 and use E10K as DAC since i cant hear noise/clarity difference compared to even 2$ used oldschool mp3 player, but im afraid that it will be another waste of $ ( 1-5% sound improvement ). Mby i should try to get it from amazon and after few days of use return it or keep it if its rly good improvement.

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17 hours ago, Exaco said:

I agree, but imo these DAC/AMP's would be more beneficial for Speakers rather than Headphones since it bounces the sound alot more and it can be felt too, so in short the improvement is less limited by hearing.

Currently i have E10K which imo is really standard HW ( probs same as any mid/high end motherboard ), i would love to try something like O2 or Magni 3 and use E10K as DAC since i cant hear noise/clarity difference compared to even 2$ used oldschool mp3 player, but im afraid that it will be another waste of $ ( 1-5% sound improvement ). Mby i should try to get it from amazon and after few days of use return it or keep it if its rly good improvement.

I’m not a believer of buying $500+ amp/dac and that they will make the headphone that you dont like suddenly becomes youe favourite pair of headphone.

 

Placebo effect is scientifically proven to be real and we still dont know how the heck it happens

 

In the first place, a solid state amplifier that changes sound signature is a defective amplifier. It’s called amplifier, not a sound processor/mixer.

 

Get the magni 3. IMO it’s the only amp you’ll ever need and you can use E10K for dac

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4 hours ago, xtroria said:

Placebo effect is scientifically proven to be real and we still dont know how the heck it happens

 

Imo it's some sort of brainwashing or tricking the brain.. For example i thought Tidal is warmer and richer sounding than .flac on regular player because i somehow thought that they have better quality files ( more official ) and that streaming processes the sound differently. But then i did A/B testing and its the exact same thing. 

So when everyone says that this amp or this silver cable makes the sound alot better people gonna buy it and expect that and then they "hear" it... and later goes on forums and writes something like "wow this amp and this silver cable is so good" continuing that "Audiofool" chain. And these people probably never bothers to do proper A/B testing or "scientific" measurements.

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Hey guys!

I just upgraded from a crappy usb headset to the HD 599 and a modmic 5. However, it turns out that my motherboard's onboard audio has died in the couple of years that I've owned it. So basically I need something to plug the headphones and mic into and since I'm low on cash now it has to be under $100. From what I've seen on Amazon I'm limited to crappy $10 adapters and Sound Blaster's external sound cards loaded with virtual surround and gaming nonsense. As an alternative I was thinking of something like a FiiO E10k but then I would still have no mic port. Any suggestions? Obviously anything at this price won't be much better than onboard but as long as I don't hear hissing and people can hear me I'll live.  

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1 hour ago, LoneStar said:

Hey guys!

I just upgraded from a crappy usb headset to the HD 599 and a modmic 5. However, it turns out that my motherboard's onboard audio has died in the couple of years that I've owned it. So basically I need something to plug the headphones and mic into and since I'm low on cash now it has to be under $100. From what I've seen on Amazon I'm limited to crappy $10 adapters and Sound Blaster's external sound cards loaded with virtual surround and gaming nonsense. As an alternative I was thinking of something like a FiiO E10k but then I would still have no mic port. Any suggestions? Obviously anything at this price won't be much better than onboard but as long as I don't hear hissing and people can hear me I'll live.  

https://us.creative.com/p/sound-cards/sound-blaster-play-3 This maybe? I doubt it would be noticeably worse than E10K, but tbh im not sure about the power of that since its not mentioned in the specs ( im interested in that one too, probs would sell the E10K and get this instead ). And HD 599 is 2 times more power hungry than HD 598.

I've never seen Headphone amp with mic input, so probs something like that is ur only option if ure not willing to get USB Audio Interface.

What i would do in ur case i would get the Schiit Magni 3 + cheap USB Audio Interface ( as DAC + all the inputs needed ). 

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10 hours ago, Exaco said:

https://us.creative.com/p/sound-cards/sound-blaster-play-3 This maybe? I doubt it would be noticeably worse than E10K, but tbh im not sure about the power of that since its not mentioned in the specs ( im interested in that one too, probs would sell the E10K and get this instead ). And HD 599 is 2 times more power hungry than HD 598.

I've never seen Headphone amp with mic input, so probs something like that is ur only option if ure not willing to get USB Audio Interface.

What i would do in ur case i would get the Schiit Magni 3 + cheap USB Audio Interface ( as DAC + all the inputs needed ). 

So I did  some more digging and I found this https://amazon.com/gp/product/B009WN7QT4/ref=oh_aui_detailpage_o00_s00?ie=UTF8&psc=1 

This DAC and amp with a mic input was buried deep in the search results but it seems more than adequate for what I need and perfectly in budget too.

Thanks for the help!

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6 hours ago, LoneStar said:

So I did  some more digging and I found this https://amazon.com/gp/product/B009WN7QT4/ref=oh_aui_detailpage_o00_s00?ie=UTF8&psc=1 

This DAC and amp with a mic input was buried deep in the search results but it seems more than adequate for what I need and perfectly in budget too.

Thanks for the help!

Looks like not bad one, but the problem is no power specs. It says up to 150ohm ( while in AMP chip website says easily drives 600ohm ), but what is the mW/W, power output etc is unknown. 
So it will drive or wont drive the 599, a bit of an lottery.
Edit: Should be good enough. 

 

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13 hours ago, Exaco said:

Looks like not bad one, but the problem is no power specs. It says up to 150ohm ( while in AMP chip website says easily drives 600ohm ), but what is the mW/W, power output etc is unknown. 
So it will drive or wont drive the 599, a bit of an lottery.
Edit: Should be good enough. 

 

That reviewers style is pretty interesting haha 🙂

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My motheboard is asus h81m-c sound chipset is alc887-vd and i think my m50x doesnt get its full potential from my motherboard,do you think buying external amp dac combo will help or sound card like creative sound blaster z? by the way im tryin to get the best crisp and bass for music, i already have a gaming headset corsair void pro usb rgb for gaming.

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Posted · Original PosterOP
On 11/30/2018 at 10:51 AM, Exaco said:

https://us.creative.com/p/sound-cards/sound-blaster-play-3 This maybe? I doubt it would be noticeably worse than E10K, but tbh im not sure about the power of that since its not mentioned in the specs ( im interested in that one too, probs would sell the E10K and get this instead ). And HD 599 is 2 times more power hungry than HD 598.

I've never seen Headphone amp with mic input, so probs something like that is ur only option if ure not willing to get USB Audio Interface.

What i would do in ur case i would get the Schiit Magni 3 + cheap USB Audio Interface ( as DAC + all the inputs needed ). 

 

On 12/1/2018 at 3:51 AM, Exaco said:

Looks like not bad one, but the problem is no power specs. It says up to 150ohm ( while in AMP chip website says easily drives 600ohm ), but what is the mW/W, power output etc is unknown. 
So it will drive or wont drive the 599, a bit of an lottery.
Edit: Should be good enough. 

 

please stop for now, you are giving advice about gear you haven't heard and then you link to Zeos that is known for not being able to hear that well and change his taste quite often, even his own discord chat calls him deaf. I get that you are just trying to help, but it really just creates more chaos and confusion. Just to be clear this is not to be mean or any form of attack on you. I were also in the boat you are in right now once and it is great that you are trying to help, but you really should get some more knowledge and experience before you start helping. :) 

 

The 599 actually need about 4 times as much power as the 598, because it has a sensitivity of 106dB/V instead of 112dB/V. The Creative thing you linked sounds awful, you would know this if you have tried it. Also just because they say up to something for impedance doesn't mean that it can't power anything above that impedance.

 

The Syba sounds like you would expect for $41, a decent onboard today will be on the same level as it or better, except the mic input on onboard would have static in the background. It would be a ok for a cheap dead onboard replacement, but don't expect much from it @LoneStar

20 hours ago, StanicEnemy said:

My motheboard is asus h81m-c sound chipset is alc887-vd and i think my m50x doesnt get its full potential from my motherboard,do you think buying external amp dac combo will help or sound card like creative sound blaster z? by the way im tryin to get the best crisp and bass for music, i already have a gaming headset corsair void pro usb rgb for gaming.

I wouldn't recommend getting anything for the M50x because it doesn't "scale" that well and it would make more sense to get a better headphone first and then later look into a DAC and amp. I would especially not get something from Creative, it is low quality for what you pay and it colors the sound a lot. If you must then get something external, schiit fulla 2 would be okay for low impedance headphones, but you can maybe find a used geek out 1000 for very little money and that would be a better buy than the fulla 2. If you go below these then you honestly start to get into onboard quality, hell I would say that the fulla 2 is barely above a decent onboard.

9 hours ago, ChinChinLunLun said:

Would the JDS Labs Atom make the cut as part of your recommended list?

Maybe, I would have to get a unit for testing before I would be confident enough to put it on the list. It certainly measures well, but that doesn't tell us much about how it actually sounds. A good exsample of this would be Mr.Speaker headphones, they measure well but they sound dead and aren't that detailed. I am in the works of securing a few different amps for testing where the atom is one of them, but it can take another month or two before any of them will get here, these things take time because this is on a volunteer basis.

 

To all of you I hope that you are having a good day.


Before you buy amp and dac.  My thoughts on the M50x  Ultimate Ears Reference monitor review I might have a thing for audio...

My main Headphones and IEMs:  K612 pro, HD 25 and Ultimate Ears Reference Monitor, HD 580 with HD 600 grills, Focal Elex

DAC and AMP: Dual PCM63k tube DAC, RME ADI 2 DAC, Cavalli Tube Hybrid

Speakers: Genelec 8040, System Audio SA205

Receiver: Denon AVR-1612

Desktop: R7 1700, GTX 1080  RX 580 8GB and other stuff

Laptop: ThinkPad P50: i7 6820HQ, M2000M. ThinkPad T420s: i7 2640M, NVS 4200M

Feel free to pm me if you have a question for me or quote me. If you want to hear what I have to say about something just tag me.

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3 hours ago, Dackzy said:

 

please stop for now, you are giving advice about gear you haven't heard and then you link to Zeos that is known for not being able to hear that well and change his taste quite often, even his own discord chat calls him deaf. I get that you are just trying to help, but it really just creates more chaos and confusion. Just to be clear this is not to be mean or any form of attack on you. I were also in the boat you are in right now once and it is great that you are trying to help, but you really should get some more knowledge and experience before you start helping. :) 

 

The 599 actually need about 4 times as much power as the 598, because it has a sensitivity of 106dB/V instead of 112dB/V. The Creative thing you linked sounds awful, you would know this if you have tried it. Also just because they say up to something for impedance doesn't mean that it can't power anything above that impedance.

 

The Syba sounds like you would expect for $41, a decent onboard today will be on the same level as it or better, except the mic input on onboard would have static in the background. It would be a ok for a cheap dead onboard replacement, but don't expect much from it @LoneStar

I wouldn't recommend getting anything for the M50x because it doesn't "scale" that well and it would make more sense to get a better headphone first and then later look into a DAC and amp. I would especially not get something from Creative, it is low quality for what you pay and it colors the sound a lot. If you must then get something external, schiit fulla 2 would be okay for low impedance headphones, but you can maybe find a used geek out 1000 for very little money and that would be a better buy than the fulla 2. If you go below these then you honestly start to get into onboard quality, hell I would say that the fulla 2 is barely above a decent onboard.

Maybe, I would have to get a unit for testing before I would be confident enough to put it on the list. It certainly measures well, but that doesn't tell us much about how it actually sounds. A good exsample of this would be Mr.Speaker headphones, they measure well but they sound dead and aren't that detailed. I am in the works of securing a few different amps for testing where the atom is one of them, but it can take another month or two before any of them will get here, these things take time because this is on a volunteer basis.

 

To all of you I hope that you are having a good day.

I was just curious if the Atom would make the cut and see if JDS did anything than just make sure it measured well. And yeah, the MrSpeakers headphones do measure well but sound like they should be priced way lower than their MSRP.

Anyways, hope to hear from you again after your tests.

P.S. Zeos is a hypeman/salesperson that only works for himself. I refuse to acknowledge him as a reviewer because the guy already has no consistency in what he even likes other than I know he doesn't like treble as much... but even then he has inconsistency on what is or isn't bad treble to even his ears.

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I recently got the Sennheiser HD8 DJ's because I like loud, powerful bass.

I have an unorthodox setup though. I'm using a Onkyo TX SR701 home stereo receiver, which has dual 32 bit DSP and 192 kHz/24-bit audio DACs. My audio source is via optical from my PC's Realtek sound card.

I just thought I'd leave my experience here since I can't find a single person from any Google search that had similar concerns as I did with using home stereo equipment to power headphones, instead of the traditional headphone specific DAC and amp.

The HD8 DJ's are rated at 95 ohms but that isn't a problem for my Onkyo receiver. It's amp is rated at 100W x2 but obviously internal circuitry adjusts the output according to headphone impedance. However there is NO INFORMATION ANYWHERE about the amp's power specs for headphones, namely impedance ranges. Which, left me concerned if it could power 95 ohm headphones (originally I was considering 250 ohm headphones).

So if anyone has a similar setup or was considering it, let me say you have nothing to worry about. The Onkyo was able to power my headphones easily and they get extremely loud (they're rated up to 115 dB). I also use software EQ settings for bass gain, and to adjust midrange and treble that are lacking with these headphones.

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18 hours ago, Wolf_Lbh said:

Every other amp recommendation is now obsolete unless you can't afford the $350 price tag on this puppy.

 

Only if you live in North America and it just so happens to be on Massdrop. And you might not like the color of this amp. Also he said don’t post Zeos in this thread as he is not a reliable audio reviewer.

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