The delicious dilemma!
Originally Posted by bebanovich
No matter what order you upgrade, you always are going to want to add the next piece of equipment. You could go for the 225 now and enjoy them without an amp. When you get a decent amp, they will sound even better.
It's all a vicious and wonderful cycle. If you get the amp now, your 60s will sound better and you can look forward to the 225s.
The mSeed Spirit is a great little amp - sweet and clean. I'm loving mine despite the quirky mode for connecting an external power supply. The other one I looked at seriously was the Porta Corda MKIII @ $160. The sound signature didn't seem like my cup o' tea but it's supposed to be a terrific amp.
Firstly, if you go down the amp route at this stage then I would consider the mSEED LABS Spirit as well. Real bang for your buck. Furthermore don't feel that being a junior poster on head-fi somehow stops your ears working properly
. I have been a head-fi member since 2004 and my first posts have been this week.
I would take the junk in - junk out addage on this and take the view that if you start with good SQ, lossless or high bit rate compressed material then everything else can follow on. If your Zune is delivering a clean output and is capable of driving the headphones you use currently then there is an argument to say don't bother with an amp at this stage. If you then upgrade the headphones there is a risk that they will not be driven properly and could also expose the limitations of your source material.
It is generally fair to say that adding an amp into this chain may add colour only (a question then of taste) or you may suddenly find you are driving your current Grado's properly and they realise their full potential. Sometimes colour can be introduced to your system to bring balance while maintaining sound quality, a subtle form of EQ.
I would also take on board the valuable comments from Onizuka-gto
regarding 'training' your listening instruments (ears) to ascertain whether you are hearing differences in colour or real differences in quality. One thing is for sure....this delicious dilemma is likely to last as many people here will testify to, as will their bank accounts