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pc outputs (noise) and conflicting pics of headphones

post #1 of 10
Thread Starter 
I had the opportunity to borrow a friend's hd580's for a weekend and dispite how amazing they sound they revealed the limitation of a pc system. When playing mp3's or cd's there is this low volume but somewhat high pitch sound that is percistant. Also, moving my mouse, opening/closing the cd drive will be enough for the phones to pick up on! Sure it is masked by turning the volume up, but since i have to turn it nearly to the max some faint distortions appear. Basically this saying to me that these headphones have udderly maxed out my system. Is there any way to minimize this? One possiblilty, the speakers i'm using are powered through the sub so i could plug it into there, but the connector is a different style (RCA) and a conversion would end up defeating the purpose right?

Thus I'm looking at the hd 495, 545, and 565. However, prefering the fabric (velor?) over the vinyl pads has caused some oddness. The pic on the senn website shows the 565 as fabric, but pics on ebay show vinyl. Could you let me know diffinatively which of the three are fabric and which are vinyl? Thanks.
post #2 of 10
Plugging your headphones into a speaker amp (subwoofer) will destroy the headphones, so don't even try

Your best solution would be to grab some sort of external DAC like a Stereolink USB DAC, or Onkyo, or Wheatfield...

Or even better, get a sound card that you can send to a really good DAC...
post #3 of 10
A better sound card could make a big difference, and it would remain cheap. At work, the PC I'm using has on-board (on the motherboard) sound, and it sound terrible! First, the sound is plain bad: very flat and "mixed" together. Then, there's the feedback you describe.

* If I move the mouse, I can hear it in the headphones.
* If the hard disk has to read/write, I hear it in the headphones.
* If the screen changes (a window pop-up for example), I can hear it.
* If pakets are sent on the network, I can hear it (well, maybe not.. )

I've noticed those problems with ALL motherboards who have on-board sound (including A-Bit, Asus and Dell).

Anyway, I never had any of those problems with a seperate sound card. SoundBlaster seem to be of good quality. I'd just avoid the SoundBlaster 128 Ensoniq. Get the real 128, or even better, the Live!.

So, if you're using onboard sound, I'd say that's your problem. Get a good soundcard, and you shall be rewarded.
post #4 of 10
Oh, and if you have the money, I'd check those out:


The "cheap" one is available at AudioAdvisor for $250.
post #5 of 10
I find that all that noise goes away when I disable (mute) all the other inputs I don't need from the volume control, such as aux in, mic in, CD in, etc. In my case the noise was coming from the aux in which was connected to my TV card audio out. Apparently the TV card out was noisy.
post #6 of 10
Thread Starter 
Currently using an aureal sq2500, which is comparable to the soundblaster live, i think. Soundblaster came out with some new cards, do you happen to know anything about these? As my card is no longer supported since company is defunct now.

After looking around there are a few other products like the one from yamaha, none of them dip below 200. Perhaps, i'll look into again in the future, arrggg i've ignored my ears forever and now that i've heard good quailty they want more and more as time goes by!
post #7 of 10
the stereo-link USB DAC is down to $160 these days, much cheaper than even 6 months ago. I'm thinking of getting one myself actually. http://www.stereo-link.com
post #8 of 10

I'm curious, I also have an aureal sound card (2 channel oem version) and was wondering how high you have to turn the volume up to listen to the hd580's.
post #9 of 10
Vortex2 sound cards are actually very nice, for consumer sound cards. People here will generally agree there. The only bad parts is the unfortunate demise of the company and they can't power a decent set of cans, Senns will have an especially hard time.
I never had the feedback problem with things like the mouse like you are though....well at least not consistantly. Maybe if you mute the other things in the volume panel?

I got a Delta Dio 2448 for $100, and its supposed to be a 'higher-quality' sound card....frankly I hated the DAC in it, I didn't like listening to the analog outputs at all.It does however have a pure digital output without upsampling for use with an external DAC, but nothing like A3D or EAX.

One thing you risk with any sound card it seems is that they don't amp well. Even with my Grados they lack a definition and clarity compared to my Corda amp.

So while this DAC is useless right now in its intended function(my sound card upsamples, as do most consumer cards)I use it right now to act as sort of a digital filter between my sound card and amp to take out the hiss and provide a clean signal. No sense amping a crap signal, right?
post #10 of 10
In response to the question on HD565 pads - they are the velour (fabric) material.
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