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AKG Q701: DAC/Amp for MacBook Pro < $150

post #1 of 5
Thread Starter 



Types of Music I listen to: Rock, Alternative, Classical, Jazz, Blues, (rarely) Rap. I don't listen to any of the electro/techno/dub stuff (seems like they give it a new name every year...).


I'm looking for some open, over the ear headphones. I've listened to the AKG Q701 and liked them very much; they seem to be economic for flagship headphones as well, so I'm willing to cash out the $250 and make myself a nice Christmas gift.


The question is, whether I need to invest into an Amp as well. Currently I use my MacBook Pro to play music (256kbit AAC from iTunes Match). My ATH M50s are pretty well powered, but I think they could possibly benefit from a DAC (and the AKGs as well then). Therefore I might just go for a Desktop DAC/Amp combo. The fiio E10 looks intriguing!


Any recommendations regarding DAC/Amps in the price range of $150 and below? I don't care about portability. And does a MacBook Pro really benefit from a DAC?

post #2 of 5

EMU 0204 might be an option. Very good DAC, not sure about the amp section, but it should be plenty I would think.

post #3 of 5
Thread Starter 

Hi, thanks for the answer; the EMU 0204 looks like more than I need; I'm not planning on any music recording.


Still, my main questions are:

1) Does a MacBook Pro really benefit from a DAC?

2) Are the AKG Q701 sufficiently powered by the fiio E10?


Can anyone help here? I'm just starting out with the entire audiophile thing.

post #4 of 5

I would suggest getting the headphones first and giving them a try.  You may find that the 701's sound plenty fine to you out of your macbook for now.  If in time, you start to itch for an upgrade, you could always try an dedicated amp then; but, in the meantime, you'll probably be fine to stick with the headphones first.  


Consider: you might even be part of the camp that does not like the sound of the 701s, and may want to continue your headphone hunt for a while longer then after selling/returning the 701s.


Wait until you find a sound you like out of headphones.  When you find that pair of headphones, you'll tell then if you'll want/need an amp.


That's my suggestion!


Good luck!


post #5 of 5



What did you ultimately decide upon? I've got a pair of Q701's and my Macbook Pro and I'm looking for a DAC and Amp. Right now I'm looking at the Schiit Magni and Modi, but am unsure.



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