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Which headphone amp?

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progbethyname View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote progbethyname Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: November 10 2018 at 21:56
Originally posted by Guldbamsen Guldbamsen wrote:

If you are looking for an amplifier then here are some stuff to look for:

1) What are you powering? How hard are your cans to drive ie ohms and sensitivity?
2) Do you want high fidelity (pure reproduction of the music) or what tube amps do which is to add euphonic distortion to the sound?
3) Are you using it on the go or in the home?

I kinda took the red pill a couple of months ago with regards to amps and dacs. I helped out a friend with some blindtests he'd set up for himself and seeing as I'd jumped on the headphone bandwagon here recently, it only seemed natural to invite an extra set of ears.
Now sitting in the midst of the Violectric V200, Schiit Jotunheim, Emotiva a-100, Myryad z40 and Burson soloist is quite the experience and just by looking at the individual units I was prepared to hear all kinds of differences and I also had a fave so to speak...even before I heard it. Though once these critters were hid from view and the volumes had been matched, we simply couldn't distinguish between them...at any point whatsoever! A very very sobering experience actually.
Then again all an amp really has to do is to..well amplify a signal with as little distortion as possible...and we've been making these things for a 100 years now, so it really isn't that hard to believe that we reached the summit a while ago.

Buy whatever amp that suits your needs the best ie connections, functions, power etc...just don't expect improved sound quality...unless you have a hard to drive headphone that you've been run ing straight out of your iPhone. An amp will definitely impeove sound quality then...but only because it makes the headphone work properly - not because of some magic proponent not yet discovered by science.

Yeah but Dave all those amps carry the same circuitry and topology design with class A. They all even use FET transistor emission. All almost cost the same between 300$ and 700$. The Burson being the most expensive. However using the same headphone that isn't very analytical or high end on these amps will likely sound the same. Also DACS can make a difference and system synergies matter depending on the headphone and power supply treatment. I am only saying this because your post here kinda sounds like a generalization. You are testing a bunch of mid-fi equipment all with in the same tier.  Also, most of your amplification contestants listed are not high end specialized amplifiers. They are good but they are not elite by any means. And Doing listening tests double or even triple blinded is very touchy and subjective stuff because most of us very much listen in a different way and actually hear different things. Running tests switching back and forth quickly can be counter productive. It is a lot for the brain to articulate and process going back and forth several times. 
You I respect and love, Dave. Not trying to step on you but amps are quite complicated in construction and the quality of certain circuit designs and parts really matters. Take for instance a bakoon HPA-21 or a Pass Labs HPA-1 you get into another world of Class A output than your other amps listed here. The Burson is good. Short signal pathway too, I even have one myself but my god I know there is better in class A amp designs. :)
Gimmie my headphones now!!! 🎧🤣
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (1) Thanks(1)   Quote Guldbamsen Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: November 10 2018 at 03:01
If you are looking for an amplifier then here are some stuff to look for:

1) What are you powering? How hard are your cans to drive ie ohms and sensitivity?
2) Do you want high fidelity (pure reproduction of the music) or what tube amps do which is to add euphonic distortion to the sound?
3) Are you using it on the go or in the home?

I kinda took the red pill a couple of months ago with regards to amps and dacs. I helped out a friend with some blindtests he'd set up for himself and seeing as I'd jumped on the headphone bandwagon here recently, it only seemed natural to invite an extra set of ears.
Now sitting in the midst of the Violectric V200, Schiit Jotunheim, Emotiva a-100, Myryad z40 and Burson soloist is quite the experience and just by looking at the individual units I was prepared to hear all kinds of differences and I also had a fave so to speak...even before I heard it. Though once these critters were hid from view and the volumes had been matched, we simply couldn't distinguish between them...at any point whatsoever! A very very sobering experience actually.
Then again all an amp really has to do is to..well amplify a signal with as little distortion as possible...and we've been making these things for a 100 years now, so it really isn't that hard to believe that we reached the summit a while ago.

Buy whatever amp that suits your needs the best ie connections, functions, power etc...just don't expect improved sound quality...unless you have a hard to drive headphone that you've been run ing straight out of your iPhone. An amp will definitely impeove sound quality then...but only because it makes the headphone work properly - not because of some magic proponent not yet discovered by science.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote progbethyname Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: November 09 2018 at 13:34
Originally posted by noni noni wrote:

Looking into Headphone amps..  Seems FiiO sounds good,  but which one ? E 11 or E 12?

Just bought the HiFiMan 400i headphones!!!  

Any clues!!....Smile

What did you end up deciding or getting for the 400i amp wise? 

Have you considered portable tube amplifiers. They carry a very rich and warm tonality to them. Seriously, listening to the likes of black sabbath through a tube amp is an experience that is second to none .
Gimmie my headphones now!!! 🎧🤣
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Davesax1965 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: November 09 2018 at 05:33
Hm. Might look into doing valve hifi amps as well. 

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Davesax1965 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: November 09 2018 at 04:37
I'm vaguely considering building some valve based headphone amps for sale. Time's taken up building the modular, though ! 

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote PureViewer Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: November 09 2018 at 03:01
Originally posted by noni noni wrote:

Ordered the E12   Smile

Do you have a proper DAC?
If not, you can add a FiiO E10K to your setup. Very nice little device.
If you want something portable with a built-in battery to connect to your phone, you can try iFi Nano iDSD Black Label.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Jzrk Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: April 28 2018 at 19:10
Has anyone heard of Electric Avenues pocket amps
Small company and I had been thinking about getting one and this guy seems to have a good product not made by a big company

Edited by Jzrk - April 28 2018 at 19:10
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (1) Thanks(1)   Quote Quinino Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: April 10 2018 at 13:54
^ Exactly - one has to check its specifications on what respects Sensitivity

Headphone Model

Voltage Sensitivity

(dB SPL at 1 Vrms)

Impedance

(Ohms)

Power Sensitivity

(dB SPL @ 1 mW) 

Sennheiser HD 650 112 300 107
Sennheiser HD 600 112 300 107
Audeze LCD-X 112.5 22 96
Grado SR325 113 32 98
PSB M4U 1 117 32 102
Sony MDR-V6 118 63 106
Sony MDR-V600 119.5 45 106

 

The first four headphones are only marginally loud enough to work with my portable device. The last three are a better match for the limited output voltage provided by portable devices.

Please note that two of the first four headphones are low-impedance designs but they have the same voltage sensitivity as the high-impedance Sennheiser headphones. The Audeze LCD-X and Grado SR325 are inefficient designs that require both high voltage and high current, making them somewhat unsuitable for portable applications.

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (1) Thanks(1)   Quote Larkstongue41 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: April 10 2018 at 09:31
^ Most high-end headphones (generally open ones) simply need more power than what your average power source (laptop, cellphone, etc.) can provide. So not only do you lack volume without an amp but the balance of the sound is also disrupted (you'll only hear the mids and highs for instance and have nearly non-existent bass).

Edited by Larkstongue41 - April 10 2018 at 09:34
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote dr wu23 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: April 10 2018 at 09:18
Ok...I'm not that up on stereo stuff...but why does a headphone need an amp? I have owned many over the years including my current Shure H440.,,,granted a basic inexpensive one.
?
One does nothing yet nothing is left undone.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Catcher10 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: April 06 2018 at 17:58
Originally posted by noni noni wrote:

Originally posted by Catcher10 Catcher10 wrote:

Get this one...It's only US$4,500.00 (includes a DAC) Big smile

 Can you stick this your pocket then?   Smile

Yes, buy big pants......
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote noni Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: April 06 2018 at 16:55
Ordered the E12   Smile
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote noni Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: April 06 2018 at 16:53
Originally posted by Catcher10 Catcher10 wrote:

Get this one...It's only US$4,500.00 (includes a DAC) Big smile

 Can you stick this your pocket then?   Smile
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote noni Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: April 06 2018 at 16:51
Originally posted by Quinino Quinino wrote:

Originally posted by Catcher10 Catcher10 wrote:

... (includes a DAC) 


It does, indeed (I received one for Christmas) but it comes in parts - I had to mount it by myself, and soldering can be a pain - so I wouldn't recommend it for beginners

^

LOL LOL LOL
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Quinino Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: April 06 2018 at 16:25
Originally posted by Catcher10 Catcher10 wrote:

... (includes a DAC) 


It does, indeed (I received one for Christmas) but it comes in parts - I had to mount it by myself, and soldering can be a pain - so I wouldn't recommend it for beginners
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (1) Thanks(1)   Quote Catcher10 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: April 06 2018 at 16:06
Get this one...It's only US$4,500.00 (includes a DAC) Big smile

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote noni Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: April 06 2018 at 14:07
Originally posted by Larkstongue41 Larkstongue41 wrote:

You chose a great time to get the Hifimans. I just checked and saw they dropped about half the price from when I bought them last summer. Ouch!

I was concidering buying them last year but failed....  I'm currently using a cheapo Sennheiser HD 206 at moment.  Hifiman went down as much as $250 Canadian $...  Got these for $314 with tax and shipment.  I also have the Bose Q25 Quiet headphones..
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote noni Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: April 06 2018 at 09:55
Thanks guys!! Big smile
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Manuel Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: April 06 2018 at 05:49
Originally posted by Frenetic Zetetic Frenetic Zetetic wrote:

I've used BEHRINGER amps for a long time for a lot of applications, but you can't go wrong with the E12 dude.
Yes, the E12 is an excellent option.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Frenetic Zetetic Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: April 06 2018 at 02:04
I've used BEHRINGER amps for a long time for a lot of applications, but you can't go wrong with the E12 dude.

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