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Sennheiser 650s + Computer Headphone Jack -- What Am I Missing?

post #1 of 79
Thread Starter 

Hello all

 

I was able to get a pair of brand new HD 650s off ebay for a good price (compared to everywhere else) so i couldnt help but to get them. I have a Macbook Pro and a lot of my music is from sources all over (not much was ripped from CDs or via itunes store) so the quality varies..

 

I was just wondering, if i just use the 3.5 adapter and plug into my headphone jack on my MBP, what am I missing? I have a pair of Sennheiser 448s too and, other than the obvious quality difference, the only thing i see different is i need the volume set higher for the 650s to get the same loudness. Ive read everywhere the 650s demand an amp to get the full quality but they seem to be sounding pretty good as of now.

 

So, i guess im asking, is there gonna be a comparable difference with an amp if my source has variable quality music?

 

Any input would be appreciated! Ive learned quite a bit since joining from you guys :)

post #2 of 79

I would at least get some kind of amp, but if your music quality varies, and since you don't seem too concerned about the source, why not settle with mid-fi?


Edited by Satellite_6 - 3/12/11 at 12:04pm
post #3 of 79

With mp3's higher then 192kbps, the difference will be noticable and, on my opinion, worth it

 

I'd say compare yourself, check it out, if it doesn't suit you, an decent amp and a HD650's could be sold without losing much money whenever you want; there's always demand here on head-fi for amps and HD650's

post #4 of 79

If you find the HD650 great sounding now, they go to another level with proper amplification.  You'll hear improvements in bass both in punch and control, impoved instrument separation, faster transient response as well as a wider sound stage.  A great place to start is with Fiio's budget desktop amplifier the E9.  The E9 has the power to drive your HD650 with authority and finesse, all at a very reasonable price.  So I strongly suggest investing in a quality amplifier like the E9 to really hear why the HD650 has gotten the well deserved praise it has. 

post #5 of 79
Thread Starter 

thanks for the input. most of the mp3s i have are above 192kbps so i might look at the e9 since i can get an e7 for cheap.

 

any other amps worth looking at? i saw the nuforce icon but thats kinda a bit more than i wanted to spend..

post #6 of 79

If you go with E9 (which I can definitely recommend at that price range), indeed take E7 (as DAC) also.

post #7 of 79
Thread Starter 

yea i saw the e9 wasnt a DAC so ill try out the combo. thanks

post #8 of 79

At the very least, get a uDAC2 which can be had for around $120. It will be much better than your headphone out in terms of both DAC quality and amp power. But most importantly, you need to start upgrading your music quality if you want the most out of your HD650. Quite frankly, anything less than 320kbs just won't cut it, and even then, FLAC is better.


 

post #9 of 79

^ true, try to upgrade your stuff to 320 or FLAC

 

As for DAC, E7 is comparible in quality to uDAC, different sound, but in the same league

 

You did get a headphone which is worth it..

post #10 of 79

Geez, it was like you practically read my mind then started this thread. Right now I'm saving up for the 650's and have been wondering the same. I have the PA2V2 but that's really only for portable use and I doubt could power the 650's. I was considering just picking up the 650's and listening to them out of my computer at 320kbs. Being a general mid-fier, I figured as long as it didn't sound horrendous, I could put up with and enjoy it. But recently I've been looking into the E7/E9 combo as well. I've heard a lot of good things on here about it and for the price ($200 together over at Micca), seems like a great deal.

post #11 of 79
Thread Starter 

well if u wait til tuesday (amazons approx delivery date for the e9) i can give u some feedback haha

 

but 650s and the computer headphone jack still sound awesome. im just trying to step it up to the next level lol

post #12 of 79

So I see you decided to get the E9.  When you get your new items maybe you can give some impressions and take some photos too?

post #13 of 79
Don't stop at 320kpbs and FLAC.rolleyes.gif Nothing short of full PCM 88khz/24-bit will really get it done and 176kbps is far better.
Edited by Brent Hutto - 3/12/11 at 4:56pm
post #14 of 79
Just in case you didn't know there were other options in the same price bracket, I'd suggest you look at the entry level Audio-GD amp/dac combos (NFB-11/12 or Sparrow).

Also, upgrade your source files and turn off any sound enhancer or crappy eq preset your software may have enabled. "Crap in, crap out" is a truism that's often forgotten around these parts and any amp/dac worth the expense (particularly with cans as revealing and scalable as the HD650) will usually highlight the weak link in your chain.
post #15 of 79
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Digital-Pride View Post

So I see you decided to get the E9.  When you get your new items maybe you can give some impressions and take some photos too?


yup ill see what i can do when i get them but my Droid X is the best quality camera I have lol


 

Quote:
Originally Posted by olor1n View Post

Just in case you didn't know there were other options in the same price bracket, I'd suggest you look at the entry level Audio-GD amp/dac combos (NFB-11/12 or Sparrow).

Also, upgrade your source files and turn off any sound enhancer or crappy eq preset your software may have enabled. "Crap in, crap out" is a truism that's often forgotten around these parts and any amp/dac worth the expense (particularly with cans as revealing and scalable as the HD650) will usually highlight the weak link in your chain.


Its not i didnt know, its that I can get an e7 for cheap so it kinda influenced my decision.

 

and on iTunes, dont use the EQ? why not?

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