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Mad Lust Envy's Headphone Gaming Guide: (3/18/2016: MrSpeakers Ether C 1.1 Added) - Page 438

post #6556 of 37339

The DT990 Premium are better in everything, I never need the clamp of the Pros on any headphone. I consider them the best deal for fun, immersive gaming. In Germany they cost like the Q701 and while the Q701 might be better suited for all music needs the DT990 600 is much better with entertainment like movies and games.

 

 

My T90 just arrived btw, will put them on later today. :D
 

post #6557 of 37339

I have been told recently that my soundcard that I ordered could be bad for the DT 990s because it doesn't have an on board amp. I was told to return it for the Xonar DG model instead of the DX I ordered because the DG has an onboard amp for headphones. What do you guys think? 

I assumed the DX was better cos of the pricing, how essential will the amp be? The DT 990s are the 250 Ohm version if that makes an impact on it


Edited by seanmcloughlin7 - 7/25/12 at 8:04am
post #6558 of 37339
Quote:
Originally Posted by seanmcloughlin7 View Post

I have been told recently that my sound card that I ordered could be bad for the DT 990s because it doesn't have an on board amp. I was told to return it for the Xonar DG model instead of the DX I ordered because the DG has an on-board amp for headphones. What do you guys think? 

I assumed the DX was better cos of the pricing, how essential will the amp be? The DT 990s are the 250 Ohm version if that makes an impact on it

With the Xonar DX powering 250-Ohm headphones, on a volume scale of 1 to 10, max volume would be around 2.5.

With the Xonar DG (& DGX), you would get 250-Ohm headphones to a volume of 5 to 6.

I would recommend to keep the Xonar DX because it does have a better DAC and slightly better surround sound then the DG.

 

For $50 to $65, you can get a Solid State headphone amplifier off eBay (ships from China).

SMSL SAP-100 ($65)

SMSL TPA61020A2

 

Or a Muse ($50-$60) single tube headphone amplifier, sold on Amazon.

post #6559 of 37339

From what I've heard the difference in sound quality between the DG and DX is negligible and not worth the extra 40 euro price tag. If that's the scale of Volume it doesn't sound too good for the DX and seems like it would be quite low 

post #6560 of 37339
Quote:
Originally Posted by seanmcloughlin7 View Post

From what I've heard the difference in sound quality between the DG and DX is negligible and not worth the extra 40 euro price tag. If that's the scale of Volume it doesn't sound too good for the DX and seems like it would be quite low 

I've used a few Xonar DGs and for the price of the card, can not complain about the sound quality, better then on-board.

The Xonar DX is going to be mostly use by someone with headphones in the 32-Ohm to 80-Ohm range.

post #6561 of 37339

So you would need an amp to drive 250 Ohm headphones?

post #6562 of 37339
Quote:
Originally Posted by seanmcloughlin7 View Post

So you would need an amp to drive 250 Ohm headphones?

With the Xonar DX (which does not have a head amp.),  you would need an add-on external amplifier.

The Xonar DG does come with a very basic half-way decent headphone amplifier.

post #6563 of 37339
Thread Starter 
The Beyerdynamic headphones I've listed all need amplifiers, even the 32ohm. They are misleading, and are as hard to drive as the 250ohm, IMHO.
post #6564 of 37339
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mad Lust Envy View Post

The Beyerdynamic headphones I've listed all need amplifiers, even the 32ohm. They are misleading, and are as hard to drive as the 250ohm, IMHO.

Good thing I decided to change the soundcard then, I think the DX would struggle to power them. 

post #6565 of 37339
Thread Starter 
Well, I don't think any of those soundcards would power the Beyers well. You need one with a real built in amplifier (like the Asus Essenbce STX), or one keeps Dolby Headphone when attaching an amp.

I really don't know a lick about soundcards. You should ask Nameless on the PC thread.
Edited by Mad Lust Envy - 7/25/12 at 12:39pm
post #6566 of 37339
Quote:
Originally Posted by TMRaven View Post

No, bass extension is the right term, unless you're one of those people that thinks -6 or -10db at 30hz is reaching low.  Only non planar open headphone I've heard so far to have low-bass performance rivaling a closed can has been the DT990, and even that has a good bit of a rolloff from its massive mid-bass hump.

At first I thought you were the guy asking for advice, till you posted this.

Normally, I would just say "Yeah, I am one of 'those people' that think bass extends as low as I can hear it, but I hear what you're getting at" and not try to convince you to agree with me. You've obviously spent a lot of time and money and come to several practical conclusions based on your experience and taste, and I do not fault you for enjoying the journey. What I write next is for others.

Because this is a highly visible thread, to say "No open headphone has deep bass extension that I've heard except the DT990 and the [even more esoteric] planar headphones" is misleading, to others, because it relies on opinion. FWIR deep bass extension is simply the ability to make audible sub-bass notes, while bass presence describes how strong/prominent/energetic/how loud those notes are. 30hz is indeed very deep and near the peak (valley?) of human hearing.

All headphone bass is produced the same way; the drivers are too small to produce deep bass notes of adaquate presence at the slow vibration speed required, so the drivers are engineered to vibrate at a higher frequency and cancel out part of the sound wave, which results in a lower freq note that can more easily produce desired presence, or energy, as you said. For others that don't quite get what I just said, it's basically the same principle that makes active noise-canceling headphones work.

I admit I don't understand perfectly why closed headphones have greater presense/energy, though I believe that, broadly, it focuses the energy in the direction of your ears. The trick with closed headphones is avoiding extra sound-wave cancellation by: shaping the closed side of the earcups to prevent the waves from cris-crossing, and dampening vibrations from the closed side of the earcups, as you said. Theoretically it is impossible to avoid the problems in designing closed headphones when compared to open headphone's ability to freely eminate sound waves, but they can be designed well enough to be outside human perception. O'Course, +design = +cost, so your value may vary.

Overall point: assuming the same design budget, it is easier to produce Open headphones with greater sound accuracy and detail, while closed headphones have the benefits of some noise isolation and have an easier time producing more deep bass presense or energy at the cost of some accuracy.
Quote:
Originally Posted by PurpleAngel View Post

With the Xonar DX powering 250-Ohm headphones, on a volume scale of 1 to 10, max volume would be around 2.5.
With the Xonar DG (& DGX), you would get 250-Ohm headphones to a volume of 5 to 6.
I would recommend to keep the Xonar DX because it does have a better DAC and slightly better surround sound then the DG.

For $50 to $65, you can get a Solid State headphone amplifier off eBay (ships from China).
SMSL SAP-100 ($65)
SMSL TPA61020A2

Or a Muse ($50-$60) single tube headphone amplifier, sold on Amazon.

Hmm interesting, I've never heard of those amps or other people recommend them. My interest is piqued, what do you like about them over, say, a FiiO E11 or fred_fred_2004 from eBay's custom built amps in the sub $100 range?

And basically, you're recommending he stay with the Xonar DX and add an amp to plug in between the headphone and sound card, correct?
Edited by Evshrug - 7/25/12 at 12:57pm
post #6567 of 37339
Quote:
Originally Posted by Evshrug View Post


.
Hmm interesting, I've never heard of those amps or other people recommend them. My interest is piqued, what do you like about them over, say, a FiiO E11 or fred_fred_2004 from eBay's custom built amps in the sub $100 range?
And basically, you're recommending he stay with the Xonar DX and add an amp to plug in between the headphone and sound card, correct?

The SMSL are designed, built, sold and shipped from China, not something you would want to waste time on shipping back to China for any warranty stuff.

They are very low cost AC powered solid state amplifiers, my SAP-100 & TPA6120A2 just arrived a few days ago, I've only tested them enough to make sure they power on and work.

Would I say the Fiio E11 is better, yes, but I'm sure lots of people would like something at their desk that does not need to have the battery swapped in the middle of a game.

So there is still a lot of testing before I will post my findings on my new amps.

I've been thinking about ordering one of fred_fred_2004 hybrid tube/cmoy amps, just to test it out.

 

The Xonar DX/D1 does everything a little better then the DG(X), just the DG(X) powers headphones betters.

The DX/D1 is a lot like the STX/ST, but without the headphone amp and replaceable op-amps.

 

So I like the DX/D1 because you can get the "correct" external headphone amplifier to match your headphones.

 

The E11 works great for someone that needs an amplifier for their DX/D1 and for portable use.

 

So unless budget is a factor, say with the Xonar DX.

post #6568 of 37339

Soo I just recently made a forum account I have been lurking the forums for a couple days now reading reviews and this thread. I am currently in search of a good pair of headphones for gaming. I just recently built a brand new PC. I posted a thread here http://www.head-fi.org/t/620021/gaming-headphones but didn't get much feedback. The thing is I have a pair of Astro A40s with the mixamp. I have been reading at most they are "decent" headphones at the most. It looks like I will need a sound card to actually drive a pair of good headphones because from reading this thread the onboard sound DAC sucks. I was planning on picking up Xonar DG or DGX and upgrade to Xonar Essence STX. With a sound card would it actually make the A40s decent? I really want a pair of headphones with good soundstage(assuming this is where you can pinpoint where the noise is coming from?), but also that sensation of immersive feeling. I play all types of games from FPS to RTS to RPGs. I read that the AD700, HD 598, or Takstar 2050 are good starters. Can anyone suggest more or one which fits my needs better?

 

TLDR; Have Astro A40 w/ mixamp, good or garbage? Budget ~$300 want full sized headphones for PC gaming. Going to buy either a Xonar DG or DGX with plans to upgrade to Xonar Essence STX with in 1 month.

post #6569 of 37339
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tane View Post

Soo I just recently made a forum account I have been lurking the forums for a couple days now reading reviews and this thread. I am currently in search of a good pair of headphones for gaming. I just recently built a brand new PC. I posted a thread here http://www.head-fi.org/t/620021/gaming-headphones but didn't get much feedback. The thing is I have a pair of Astro A40s with the mixamp. I have been reading at most they are "decent" headphones at the most. It looks like I will need a sound card to actually drive a pair of good headphones because from reading this thread the onboard sound DAC sucks. I was planning on picking up Xonar DG or DGX and upgrade to Xonar Essence STX. With a sound card would it actually make the A40s decent? I really want a pair of headphones with good soundstage(assuming this is where you can pinpoint where the noise is coming from?), but also that sensation of immersive feeling. I play all types of games from FPS to RTS to RPGs. I read that the AD700, HD 598, or Takstar 2050 are good starters. Can anyone suggest more or one which fits my needs better?

TLDR; Have Astro A40 w/ mixamp, good or garbage? Budget ~$300 want full sized headphones for PC gaming. Going to buy either a Xonar DG or DGX with plans to upgrade to Xonar Essence STX with in 1 month.

The Q701s are your best friend. The level of immersion should make you forget the A40s entirely, though the bass may be a little bit less prominent. I assume you have a newer A40 with improved pads. The older A40s didn't have almost any bass themselves.
post #6570 of 37339
Thread Starter 
The HE400 is here! Lol, they were horribly misaligned upon opening them. Took a second to align properly. One of the pleather pads had a pressure line, as if it was pressed against something. Not an issue as I won't be using the pleather, but it made the pad look bumpy and uneven. Upon first holding them... man they are quite heavy compared to every other headphone I've owned (including the HE-4). It's a good weight though, makes it feel not cheap. Speaking of pleather, they don't feel too bad. Certainly less contact surface than the Denons, so I find the pads more comfortable on the HE400. I really like the stock canare cable. Not as nice as the cable that came with the HE-4 (with the fabric), but these are more rugged, and less prone to twisting, so I'm happy.

Upon putting them on... they feel lovely on my head. Just like the HE-4, I LOVE this headband style more than any other (with the exception of the Steelseries Siberia V1). The weight is even distributed on my head, so it shouldn't cause long term discomfort. Okay, first listening test, WTF? I thought these were supposed to be easy to drive? My NFB-5 has never had to go the right side of the volume knob on Low Gain, even with the Q701. My knob is almost a 3 o' clock! Once I set it to high gain, it's down to around 11 o'clock. That's a surprise. I'm sorry, but I don't see how this is easy to drive. My NFB-5 has a crapton of power (something like 2.5 watts at 35ohm), so it's crazy just how much it needs on the pot.

Hmm... they're warm, but they don't sound veiled or muddy. In fact, I'd say the warmth is akin to the Q701, just slightly more so. (In comparison, the old K701 I had was noticeably brighter than the Q701). I don't find them too dark. The sound signature puts a smile on my face. biggrin.gif

Obviously not as much bass as my old D7000 and my current Pro 900, but I feel it's a neutral-ish bass (for ME). I'm not sure if it has more bass than the HE-4 though, as I felt the bass on the HE-4 had a lot of authority. This is a fantastic replacement for the Q701 for me. It trades off a bit of the soundstage for more bass. It has a meatier sound. I don't find anything about it being veiled. I see what you guys are saying about the treble. At certain frequencies it sounds smooth, and at others, it's has like the perfect amount of sparkle. So I'm 100% happy with it's treble. Bullet dodged!

The mids are well in tune with the rest of the sound, and it's gonna be quite jarring going back to the Pro 900 in this regard.

So far, it's not going to make my Pro 900s go back. I love the Pro 900s (quite a bit more than I previously expressed, as I was disappointed with them at first), and they excel in bringing out the oomph in EDM (which is my fave genres), but the HE400 is definitely going to be my go to for everything else.

Although the soundstage isn't Q701 size, the HE400s have a pretty good sense of air about them.

All this is with the pleather pads. wink.gif

I'm surprised at myself for being able to resist throwing on the velours immediately. The pleather pads really aren't that bad. I wouldn't want the HE400 with pleathers, as they are already hot in the less than 30 minutes I've used them, but they certainly keep cooler than every other pleather padded can I've used, though those have all been closed headphones, trapping in the heat.

Lol, they are super open. They leak worse than the Q701/DT990, and practically everything else I've owned. XD

Chicolom, I think you'd be in love with the HE400.
Edited by Mad Lust Envy - 7/25/12 at 3:46pm
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