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cheap ($200ish) headphone amp for HD600 for mixing ????????????????????

post #1 of 5
Thread Starter 

 

I own a small studio and my main pair of monitors are Event Opals. 

However, I love working on tracks on my laptop and Sennheiser HD600 headphones and eventually finishing them up in my studio. I work mostly on electronic music like techno and house.

I am obsessed with my HD600's... I think they just sound freakin' amazing. 

I have $200 i am willing to drop on a headphone amp because I know that these headphones really need a proper amp to drive them. Since I doubt that my macbook pro (brand new 17") has a proper headphone amp, I am wondering which one I should get that is in my price range. Is there even a viable option? 

 - Is this one any good? Headroom Total Bithead - Headphone Amplifier | HeadRoom Audio

 - Is this one worth the extra money? Should I wait and save for this one? Headroom Micro Amp - Headphone Amplifier | HeadRoom Audio
 - Also I checked out the Fiio E7 + E9 combination. Is that any good? It seems like these have a lot of good reviews
 
Again I really cannot spend more than $250 MAX. Eventually I will upgrade to a DAC-1 or something but for now I just need to have something. Transparency is key, I really like my HD600s... although maybe they could use just a hint of brightening :)

I know a lot of people like to upgrade the cable on the HD600's but I think that spending $200 or more on a cable is completely insane... especially if you're not driving it through a proper amp first. Besides, I already spent the $30 or whatever to upgrade the cable to the sturdier HD650 cable.

THANKS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

 

post #2 of 5

I only own one amp, a Schiit Asgard, so anything I say for other amps is based on what I have read. I also don't own the HD600s, but I have read a ton posts saying how well the Asgard and HD600 sound together. The Asgard ships from Schiit for a little over $250 new, but they show up in the FS forums for $200 pretty frequently (at the time of this post, I know there is one currently listed).

 

I've also read great things about the E7+E9 combo you mentioned, this has the added benefit of a decent DAC for the price. A used Matrix M-Stage might also be something to look into. In any case, all these amps will perform roughly the same and sound really good given their price, so you can't really go wrong with any decision.

 

I, too, do not buy into the cable hype. For $300+, I can easily buy a different pair of phones for a different sound. That said, the HD650 cable can be had for cheap and is supposedly a pretty good upgrade over the stock cable that the HD600 cable, so nothing wrong with you doing that.

post #3 of 5
You can PM Lunatique and ask for his opinion, he has a studio with K+H 300s and sometimes uses his HD650 to check his work.
post #4 of 5
Quote:
Originally Posted by fusedpro View Post

I only own one amp, a Schiit Asgard, so anything I say for other amps is based on what I have read. I also don't own the HD600s, but I have read a ton posts saying how well the Asgard and HD600 sound together. The Asgard ships from Schiit for a little over $250 new, but they show up in the FS forums for $200 pretty frequently (at the time of this post, I know there is one currently listed).

 

I've also read great things about the E7+E9 combo you mentioned, this has the added benefit of a decent DAC for the price. A used Matrix M-Stage might also be something to look into. In any case, all these amps will perform roughly the same and sound really good given their price, so you can't really go wrong with any decision.

 

I, too, do not buy into the cable hype. For $300+, I can easily buy a different pair of phones for a different sound. That said, the HD650 cable can be had for cheap and is supposedly a pretty good upgrade over the stock cable that the HD600 cable, so nothing wrong with you doing that.




I've been listening to the HD600 and HD650 through an Asgard. I've swapped the cables between them and can't hear a difference (between the cables, not the headphones!).


Edited by palmfish - 8/12/11 at 7:27am
post #5 of 5

You might want to consider the Lovely Cube, or the Matrix M-Stage (2 separate amps). They're $225-250 copies of the Black Cube Linear (BCL), an $800-1000 amp. I've read through the appropriate 'official' threads for each respective amp, and community response has been extremely positive. They apparently equal, and in some cases better (with modifications) the original design.

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