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Little Dot MKIII + Beyerdynamic DT880 600ohm. What gain setting are you using?

post #1 of 13
Thread Starter 

Hi,

 

I've had this setup for a few days now and I'm really enjoying it. I've decided to play around with the gain switches and found some subtle, yet audible, differences. In particular I find the result using setting 5 awesome. It really gives a soul to these headphones, while I found the base setting 3 to power them fine, but result in a less "emotional", maybe more clinical presentation. What are you experiences with it? Also, is there a "recommended" setting with 600ohm headphones - if one wants to approach this from an impedance-matching point of view? I found the MKIII reference guide rather confusing wrt this. Thanks.

post #2 of 13
Thread Starter 

bump

post #3 of 13

I only have the MKII, but for me, 10 is the best setting.  With a gain of 10 and the music streamer bypassing the computer's amp/dac, the result is quite loud.  In fact my normal listening level with it is only at around 10 (not 10 o' clock, but 10 on the volume dial)

 

Little Dot recommends gain 10 for high impedance or low sensitivity headphones, and a 600Ω headphone is high impedance.  Gain 5 is for medium impedance they say, which are 250 and 300Ω headphones.  At first when I hooked up the music streamer to the little dot on gain 10, I thought the soundstage became substantially smaller, but it was just the new and bloated state of the music streamer, and giving more thickness to the mids.

 

I havn't A/B'd 5 to 10 enough because I don't feel like continually opening the amp to keep flipping the gain switches, but of the little I did I couldn't hear a difference between the two except for volume level and perhaps more warmth to the gain 10, but I think that's because the amp's own sound signature comes into play more with higher gain.

post #4 of 13

Hello,

I've recently acquired Little Dot MK IVSE and straight from the box it started to impress. 

However I've  found it a bit silent, since I do need to turn it on at nearly 16h (o'clock) to satisfy

my volume taste, which (just for the record) is not too demanding.

I'm running Amarra from the iMac to Nuforce HDP DAC and to LD mkIV.

Have experienced similar problems with my previous setup (Darkvoice 3322) but to a lesser degree.

Is it beacause of Nuforce HDP DAC, cause it obviously supresses something, even when volume knob is 

rotated to its maximum?

Maybe some kind of impendance mismatch between Nuforce DAC's RCA outputs and Little Dot inputs?

BTW, Nuforce by itself is a decent performer. Obviously it doesn't fit in my current setup, though.

 

post #5 of 13

Oh, yes, i forgot it: the gain settings are 10 (Both off), i.e. maximal gain.

post #6 of 13
Thread Starter 

At gain 10, with my Little Dot Mk III and Beyerdynamic DT880, the volume pot is never past the 11 o'clock mark. After that it becomes too loud.

post #7 of 13

Are your DT-880s 600 Ohms version?

I have been testing this evening, no matter what DAC the sound is pleasant  only after 14h (o'clock). 

Seems to me that my unit is faulty...

Or am I missing something?... It is not the Icon DAC.

post #8 of 13
Quote:
Originally Posted by blacknile View Post

At gain 10, with my Little Dot Mk III and Beyerdynamic DT880, the volume pot is never past the 11 o'clock mark. After that it becomes too loud.


Same here, gain 10 on MKIII and dt880 600 ohm really shines smily_headphones1.gif
post #9 of 13
Quote:
Originally Posted by TMRaven View Post

Little Dot recommends gain 10 for high impedance or low sensitivity headphones, and a 600Ω headphone is high impedance.  Gain 5 is for medium impedance they say, which are 250 and 300Ω headphones.  At first when I hooked up the music streamer to the little dot on gain 10, I thought the soundstage became substantially smaller, but it was just the new and bloated state of the music streamer, and giving more thickness to the mids.

 

Going by the chart on page 8 of the Little Dot MK III Reference Manual I thought that a gain of 3, not a gain of 10, would be the proper match for high impedance (600 Ohm) headphones. I am pairing this amp with my own pair of DT 880 (600 Ohms) and was rather disappointed with the stock sound. Once I flipped both channel switches to ON to match my high headphone impedance, the sound quality greatly improved...

 

http://dl.dropbox.com/u/6037680/Little%20Dot%20MK%20III%20Reference%20Guide.pdf

 

 

Did the guide that other people get with their MK III recommend different settings?

 

EDIT: Read my next post...


Edited by vs17 - 1/27/12 at 5:32pm
post #10 of 13

The online reference manual for the Little Dot MK III suggests a different gain configuration than the one that came with the amp itself.

 

Excuse me, I was mistaken in my earlier post, but it wasn't my fault! I wrote that post while I was at work following the chart that David had sent me in my email, linked from the official Little Dot MK III reference manual. I believe there is a discrepancy between the online manual that he has posted on LittleDot and the one people are receiving with their units.

 

If you look at the online reference guide, it does say that both switches should be set to ON for a gain of 3 to match High Impedance headphones. This is what I mistakenly based my previous post on. When I got home to check on the amp itself, I realized that the online configuration is not the same as what the manual that actually came with my Little Dot says.

 

According to the manual I received with my amp, both switches should be set to OFF for a gain of 10 to match High Impedance headphones. That is the change I made from the stock setting of 3 -> 10, and it made my DT-880 sound extraordinary.

 

I'm wondering if this is the source of confusion I have seen scattered around the forums regarding the gain settings for this amp. I'll include some screenshots of the manual I received later for comparison if anyone wants proof.


Edited by vs17 - 1/27/12 at 5:33pm
post #11 of 13

I am using gain 10 and love it!

Max. volume i am using them at is between 30-40% lol.

So much power from this little awesome amp.

After some tube rolling i found the best combination, now i wont change it not even for gold brick :)

post #12 of 13

What tubes did you end up rolling with? heh. I'd love to try out a different set in my MK III. I was thinking 8100s.

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Impulsive View Post

I am using gain 10 and love it!

Max. volume i am using them at is between 30-40% lol.

So much power from this little awesome amp.

After some tube rolling i found the best combination, now i wont change it not even for gold brick :)



 

post #13 of 13

I ended with 6N6P Gold grid + Voskhods 6ZH1P-EV

 

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