Originally Posted by DutchGFX
I see you power your HE-500 with a Magni. How does that sound?
I have not heard the HE-500 with any other amp so I can't make a comparison, but it sounds fantastic to me. Magni is quite transparent and doesn't seem to color the sound at all. When comparing it to the HE-500 unamped, bass extension and impact are greatly improved. Imaging clears up quite a bit though the soundstage remains intimate and somewhat small. I think this is a characteristic of the HE-500 itself though. Magni seems to handle quite well and doesn't break a sweat making these cans sing. Volume knob usually stays between 8 and 10 o'clock, depending on the track. I've never felt disappointed with its performance or wished for more. However I am curious to see how the HE-500 performs with a higher tier amp, such as the Burson Soloist.
Originally Posted by daleb
Well, actually, the surround virtualizer doesn't touch the sound when headphones are plugged in. I don't know why its on.
Yes, I know an amp helps with that, but how do I know when an amp is good enough? I feel like the amp on this is already very good, I don't know if an E11 can be better then it. I'll find out in a week when I get it, I guess.
If you like the sound of your headphones directly from your laptop, there's no reason you can't listen to them that way. Generally speaking, any kind of amp would be an upgrade from no amp at all, though the difference may be less apparent with an amp like the E11 as opposed to, say, a Lyr. Honestly, I wouldn't be concerned with what other people say you "should" have for one headphone or another. I see people say all the time that a particular headphone sounds terrible with a certain amp or with no amp at all, which is just nonsense to say the least. I have never plugged in an amp and had my headphone sound like a completely different headphone. An improvement, no doubt, but I'd never say that any of my headphones sound "terrible" without one. At the end of the day, if you are enjoying your music then it doesn't matter what amp you are using or what anyone else's opinion is. After all, it is all about the music.
Having said that, you may want to think about getting an amp for the Q701, if only for the simple fact that it may just not get loud enough plugged directly into the laptop. The 701 is of below average sensitivity and therefore requires more power to reach listenable volumes.