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Fiio E7, Sennheiser HD-25: a good combination?? - Page 2

post #16 of 29
Quote:
Originally Posted by bradhyper View Post

I'm waiting on a pair of shure srh840s, I want the portability and the DAC, would the e7 work? This is my first pair of higher end headphones so I obviously have no experience with amps either. Any input on how much of a difference I would expect if I amped the 840s? I'm trying to hold off on buying an amp/dac until I physically get and listen to the headphones but I have a lot of interest in driving the sound to a higher potential when I do get them.


Brad

I have both the E7 and the SRH840.  They go well together for me.  It would help to know what your source is - then I can probably give you an idea if it's worth it.  I can say (for me):

 - As a dac for both the PC and also my laptop, the sound is definitely better and cleaner.

 - As a portable amp, I believe it has added additional clarity, impact, and separation to my 840's.  It is not 'night and day', but to me it is noticeable.  At the moment I couldn't tell you 100% if some of this is because I'm using a LOD rather than the headphone-out on my Touch. 

 

The SRH840 doesn't need an amp - but I believe it does benefit with one.  The DAC to me is the main plus with the E7 - the amp is a bonus.  For the price - the E7's benefits are worth it - to me.

 

The amp on the E7 is not overly powerful - so don't expect it to perform miracles with power-hungry cans. 

post #17 of 29
I am also curious like the OP, I currently have the HD25-1s. I read such positive reviews regarding the Fiio E7, I normally play music off my Laptop(Asus UL30VT) and my Sansa Clip. I am curious would it be in my best interest to using it as a DAC or as a Amp ? Since the HD25's are easy to drive would that mean I could get away with using a E5 for an Amp ? Or the new E11 rather ? I am a budget headfi'er lol, like I'd be willing to spend the money on a E7 if its the best option but I'm just wondering what I am lacking to bring out more of my headphones potential! Enlighten me Please ! Thanks in advance.
post #18 of 29
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tripod8 View Post

I am also curious like the OP, I currently have the HD25-1s. I read such positive reviews regarding the Fiio E7, I normally play music off my Laptop(Asus UL30VT) and my Sansa Clip. I am curious would it be in my best interest to using it as a DAC or as a Amp ? Since the HD25's are easy to drive would that mean I could get away with using a E5 for an Amp ? Or the new E11 rather ? I am a budget headfi'er lol, like I'd be willing to spend the money on a E7 if its the best option but I'm just wondering what I am lacking to bring out more of my headphones potential! Enlighten me Please ! Thanks in advance.


Disclaimer - my opinion only - I have heard the HD25s (demoed only), and not spent extensive time with them.  I own the E7 as well as the E11.  This opinion is mainly regarding the E7 paired with my SRH840's (also very easy to drive cans which don't 'need' additional amplification).

 

If you use the E7 via USB from your laptop/computer, you are using both the DAC and amp.  If you use it paired with an E9, you'd be using the E7 DAC and the E9 amp.

 

IMO, the E7 has greatest benefit as a DAC - especially if you are simply using onboard.  There wasn't as much difference between my onboard sound on the PC and the E7 (but it is noticeably better on the E7).  There is a lot more difference with my Asus netbook - the sound is considerably better through the E7.

 

The bonus with the E7 - if you're looking for an entry point - is that you also get an amp with it.  It's not overly large.  It can make a small difference with low impedance cans (it's noticeable to me on both my AD700 and SRH840).  Now I'm not sure how much of the difference (as amp only) is attributable to me bypassing the h/p out on the Touch (I use a LOD), and how much is the amplified signal.  All I know is that (to me) it improved the sound.  Portably (amp only) it was still larger than I really liked - and because the amp is not overly powerful, it will likely struggle with more power hungry cans.

 

For it's price however - as a DAC with amp as a 'bonus' - I personally think it is great value - and it's all I need with my current set-up.

 

I now own the E11 - amp only - and so far I really like it for my portable set up.  Small, transparent (to me), sounds great.  The reason I've bought the E11 is solely for my portable.  At home, I intend to keep the E7 solely as a DAC and pair it with an E9.  This way, when I eventually go higher up with my cans, I am set.

 

Eventually I'd like to go higher (in terms of quality) for both DAC and amp.  But at the moment - this set-up sounds great, is very cost effective, and ticks all the boxes for my current requirements.

 

If you end up only choosing one E7 / E11 - remember they are totally different primary purposes.  You then need to weigh up what is more important to you.  I chose both - each one suited to the purpose it was intended.

 

Hope this helps.

post #19 of 29

The answer to your question is very simple. But, first you have to figure out what you are looking for. The E7 is a DAC first and an amp second, while the E11 is a pure amp and thus is better in terms of an amp.

 

Choose E7 if: You almost always use your laptop.

Choose E11 if: If you want a portable setup.

 

 It really is that simple. Also, I find the E5 absolutely useless. If you spent $200 on headphones why are using a $15 amp to power it? Both the E11s and E7 sound fine with the HD25 and are both very transparent amps. I know you say you are a budget head-fier, but I have a feeling you'll end up buying both, because they both have benefits but in different ways

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Tripod8 View Post

I am also curious like the OP, I currently have the HD25-1s. I read such positive reviews regarding the Fiio E7, I normally play music off my Laptop(Asus UL30VT) and my Sansa Clip. I am curious would it be in my best interest to using it as a DAC or as a Amp ? Since the HD25's are easy to drive would that mean I could get away with using a E5 for an Amp ? Or the new E11 rather ? I am a budget headfi'er lol, like I'd be willing to spend the money on a E7 if its the best option but I'm just wondering what I am lacking to bring out more of my headphones potential! Enlighten me Please ! Thanks in advance.



 

 

post #20 of 29

E7's specs:

 

Internal circuit:
USB interface: PCM2706
DAC : WM8740
Low pass filter, buffer, pre-amp: OPA2338UA
Headphone amp:TPA 6130A
Coupling capacitors: ELNA PURECAP
Power supply: build in 1100mAh Li‐polymer battery

Amp section:
Power output: 135mW x 2 @ 16-Ohm
THD+N: 0.08% @ 25 mW, 1 kHz
S/N: 98dB @ 40mW

DAC section:
USB 2.0 compatible
Supports 44.1kHz and 48kHz native sampling rates, 16bits.

 

My post #13 in this thread had a link to a review that's worth reading.


Edited by Brooko - 6/1/11 at 6:21pm
post #21 of 29


Right now I have an ipod touch 4th gen and basically nothing else (I have my desktop, but it's sound card is nothing great). My files are 256k but I have plans to convert my most played tracks into lossless files. What you're saying about the DAC is basically why I was looking at the e7. It looks like a reasonably priced amp/DAC to get me started (where I can use it for both my portable and home needs) until I can afford or decide I can afford a different setup.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Brooko View Post




Brad

I have both the E7 and the SRH840.  They go well together for me.  It would help to know what your source is - then I can probably give you an idea if it's worth it.  I can say (for me):

 - As a dac for both the PC and also my laptop, the sound is definitely better and cleaner.

 - As a portable amp, I believe it has added additional clarity, impact, and separation to my 840's.  It is not 'night and day', but to me it is noticeable.  At the moment I couldn't tell you 100% if some of this is because I'm using a LOD rather than the headphone-out on my Touch. 

 

The SRH840 doesn't need an amp - but I believe it does benefit with one.  The DAC to me is the main plus with the E7 - the amp is a bonus.  For the price - the E7's benefits are worth it - to me.

 

The amp on the E7 is not overly powerful - so don't expect it to perform miracles with power-hungry cans. 



 

post #22 of 29
Quote:
Originally Posted by singha View Post

I really hope you are joking and are not intending to power the HD800 with your E7s. The E11s dont even have enough power to power my pair of HD650s so using it for an HD800 seems crazy.
 

 


Singha - I have a serious question for you - and I'm genuinely interested (not looking to spark a debate).   Martin Sägmüller (DKFT) in his review of the E7 over at anythingbutipod (link here) said:

 

"Another praiseworthy matter is that the E7 drives my 300 Ohm Sennheiser HD 650 phones just fine. A lot of misinformation and legends have been spread by ‘audiophiles’ about these phones. While they’re certainly not the most suitable to be used directly on most MP3 players, they are not that overly hard to drive and they don’t need a super-powerful amp, as is often claimed. The HD 650 sound pretty much the same driven by the FiiO E7, the AudioFire 4, as well as my overly beefy tube amp, the Woo Audio 6 (which adds nice harmonic distortions, but doesn’t drive the HD650 any ‘better’ than the other ones, in the grand scheme of things)."

 

I know that there is a difference between powering and powering well - but given DKFT's statement re the E7, and the fact that the E11 is a more powerful amp - wouldn't it handle the HD650 OK?  The reason I ask is that I have the E11 - and I intend getting either the HD600 or HD650 next year when I'm back in the US.  I'll have the E7 + E9 for desktop - but I was hoping to be able to have an element of portability (ie around the house) with the HD600/650 via the E11.

 

Anyone else who has the E11 and HD600/650 able to comment as well?  TIA

 

Sorry for taking this off-topic.

 

post #23 of 29

I tested it using laptop -> E7 via L7 -> E11 -> HD 650. It was not simply powering it well but there was just simply not enough power for it. I must admit I only tried it once because the amp just couldn't cut it. For reference, my mini3 with a gain of 2 had about the same success driving the HD650s. I will try it again when I get home with an E7, and without the L7 to see if maybe my L7 is defective or something. Your question is very sensible, and I will be sure to double check when I get home. The E7/E9 combo you were thinking about getting does power it with amazing ease.
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Brooko View Post

 

I know that there is a difference between powering and powering well - but given DKFT's statement re the E7, and the fact that the E11 is a more powerful amp - wouldn't it handle the HD650 OK?

 


 

 

post #24 of 29

Thanks!

 

If you do have a portable set-up (I couldn't see it listed in your profile) similar to DAP > LOD > E11 > HD650, I'd also be interested to see if that would work.  Appreciate your help with this.

post #25 of 29

I guess I retract my previous statement. So I tried it again via ipod classic -> L3 LOD -> E11 -> HD650, and it works no problem. Then I tried it with an L7 line out from my mac and it couldn't drive them well enough. In fact, it even can power it on the low setting. I guess my L7 probably is defective, but thanks for helping me realize this. However, using your E11 to power the HD650s is not the greatest pairing. I think it just sounds odd since they are both relatively dark sounding and I am so used to listening to the HD650s with at least an E9. 
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Brooko View Post

Thanks!

 

If you do have a portable set-up (I couldn't see it listed in your profile) similar to DAP > LOD > E11 > HD650, I'd also be interested to see if that would work.  Appreciate your help with this.



 

post #26 of 29
Quote:
Originally Posted by singha View Post

I guess I retract my previous statement. So I tried it again via ipod classic -> L3 LOD -> E11 -> HD650, and it works no problem. Then I tried it with an L7 line out from my mac and it couldn't drive them well enough. In fact, it even can power it on the low setting. I guess my L7 probably is defective, but thanks for helping me realize this. However, using your E11 to power the HD650s is not the greatest pairing. I think it just sounds odd since they are both relatively dark sounding and I am so used to listening to the HD650s with at least an E9. 
 

 


Thanks for that.  I'll definitely try them next time I travel then :)

 

post #27 of 29
Thread Starter 

 

Thank you so much for all the advice, I will go for the E7 with L3 cable for both ipad and ipod. I am mostly listening from my pc when doing some work, so I am very looking forward for the DAC function, because my notebook is awfully shitty...;)in the future I would love to pair it with E9. 

 

I was thinking about  pa2v2 and I will hopefully buy it in the future - I just love the product. 

 

Anwyway, once more great Head-fiers helped me to better my life with pleasant sound quality! Bless you! ;)

 

Soooo looking forward to it!!   ;) 

post #28 of 29

If you get the ipad camera connection kit you can use the dac section with your ipad too.


Edited by Radioking59 - 6/6/11 at 7:08pm
post #29 of 29

Even with the latest iOS can the iPad via camera connection kit power the FIIO E7 DAC? without using a usb hub? thanks

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