Originally Posted by Keithpgdrb
I am curious, and mean no disrespect. have you done testing with amps and headphones, or are your conclusions based on strict numbers? What is the best amp you have found for the 600's?
Yes I have. If one can be unbiased any good tube or SS amp will do a great job as long as:
- They are designed well
- Are operating within good Specs.
- You are looking for uncolored sound.
Some people are looking for an open loop tube amp and roll tubes to get a desired "warm" effect which is comprised of adding even harmonics. Or they will alter the FR of their cans by using a particular amp. To me I have no desire to add any harmonic distortion or change the FR of my cans other than the occasional low freq (below 100 Hz) boost using the low shelf of a parametric EQ. IMO, if the cans I picked don't sound right for me on a good clean amp, I made the wrong choice.
If you compare the pricey Sennheiser amp or other high grade/expensive amps to a cheap FiiO E12:
- The Sennheiser can reach loudness levels that one will regret once they need a hearing aid. Those levels are not going to be comfortable.
- Because of the higher possible Vp-p and lesser noise you could achieve a higher DR that in most cases won't make a difference because much of the music we listen to is overly compressed.
- One is willing to listen in a dead quite room and turn off the AC or heating system. These are open cans and you will hear that with very dynamic music.
- How much music is truly available that most of us listen to which have low enough noise and the DR that we can truly drive cans from a whisper to the blast of dynamite (ouch)?
- How often do we have music with such dynamic range as to need ideal headroom to avoid clipping that a well enough amp already has us covered for our real world cases?
- The FiiO E12 will not reach the same ear splitting levels that will burst one's head, but they can still ring your ears.
- The inexpensive ($249) Schiit ASGARD 2 should bring a smile to most ears and maybe damage them if you turn it up for too long.
- If you're using a low efficiency planar can, then you've got a special case and need a very powerful amp.
- To sum it up a lousy amp sounds bad.
- An amp being used for cans that they are not designed will not sound good, Impedance, current and Vp-p as appropriate are the first things that come to mind.
- How many people are perceiving balanced wiring as sounding better when they don't realize that they're getting a 6 dB voltage gain and we perceive increased bass and treble because of that. Save your money and use a SE wiring and turn up the gain to match.
There is a wide range of great neutral sounding amps of varying prices where some have spec differences that are either academic (measurable but beyond human perception) or they cost more because they are built using better quality components that will last longer of much better physical appearance/construction. One has much to pick from according to their desires. Most people really can't tell the differences between quality components.
I used to work in the music/recording business and worked with well known artists and frequented some of the top studios in NYC. I worked with electronic music synthesizers, designing modifying, etc. I was on a first name basis with Robert Moog.
I've been experimenting with a design for a low cost DIY amp using parts mostly available at Radio Shack but where one can substitute better stuff, like opamps (less noise better slew rate) or transistors (more power). One day when I'm done I'll put together a PDF and share it with everyone. There is much to be done and I'm having fun.
One last thing, I am getting writer's cramp, the only way someone is taking my HD600's away is by prying them out of my dead hands,.