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Posts by MikeW

Run a 3.5 mini from soundcard to O2.    Run a 3.5 mini from O2 to speakers.    when you want headphones plug headphones into O2, when you want speakers, plug speakers into O2 and use as pre-amp. Now you also get a hardware volume control close at hand, and don't have to use a switch. 
@ rroseperryIf changing your soundcard causes power supply related issues, then the PSU was quite marginal to begin with, and would probably fail before long anyways. Sounds like you had the cheapest crap power supply made. 20$ no name special.   most systems don't draw 450 watt. PSU recommendations as a whole are typically vastly over-speced.   Corsair is good, Seasonic X is better. Probably the best.   Edit: References, as I suspected, under 20...
This is the wrong forum all together for those questions. But, sound cards are trivial and use very little power. Probably about 20 watts or less. Your PSU will not even feel it.
Oh there will definately be an improvement over onboard. That's not saying much though. An ipod is an improvement over onboard, or a 29$ wal-mart special dvd player is even better.
so those of you who have claimed 400$ to be the point of diminishing returns, how many of you have actually heard a 700$ phone, or 1000$ phone? Have you simply stopped at 400$ and decided that was good enough?   I've never heard anything better then a Denon D2k, and i also owned Beyer DT880's. But i don't claim that there's diminishing improvement beyond those, cause I have never heard anything better.
Some people are satisfied with a cheap clock radio. You've made your point pretty clear, no need to keep beating a dead horse. Move along please..    
yeah, that's what the OP wanted, rip out yoru PSU replace it with a 150$ one, and buy a bunch of ridiculously overpriced SOTM filters , then for good measure get a SSD @ 2$ per GB.   So your answer is "yes a 200$ essense STX, combined with 150$ PSU, 200$ SSD, and 200$ worth of filters can compete with an external dac"   not to mention it's retarded to store media on an expensive SSD. That's why you set the foobar ram buffer to 300 megs and just buffer everything...
That's not really true, while most soundcards have an op-amp output stage. It's typically very weak, often times less then 2.0v. And very limited ability to drive headphones, especially difficult to drive ones. So yes, you are "Double amping" the amp still can have a large effect on sound output.   Plug in some HE6 to your sound card and see what happends   this is why some higher end soundcards have a completely separate jack for headphones, as it's typically a...
I must report, that i was not totally fair with the EF5. It turns out my interconnects had some kind of short and it was injecting some noise into the amp. I hadent realized or even suspected the interconnects. So my previous comparisons are pretty well invalid at this point. I have to start over... Still, the O2 is incredible for the money!   Im thinking about getting some Orthoydynamic's in the near future, so im not so sure im in that much of a hurry to get rid of...
This is a subjective question and more then a little silly..   Is a fancy sports car "Worth 40k" instead of the 10k economy model? is a 60" Tv Worth 1500$ vs a 400$ 32" TV? Is a 1800 SQ Foot home @ 150k worth it vs a 1200 SQ Foot home for 100k?   Does value = performance on a linear scale? No, not in headphones, not in anything.   on and on and on   Should you take out a payday loan, use a credit card, borrow from your grandpa to pay for headphones?...
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