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Need DAC/amp under $250 for DT880/ 250

post #1 of 24
Thread Starter 
I Am going to order my Beyer DT880 250ohm and I need a good DAC/amp to power them. I came across the FiiO7/E9 combo as well as the Maverick D1. I heard the Maverick D1 isn't that great and I heard praise for the 7/E9 combo. I can go up to $250 but it has to have a DAC/amp because I have bad onboard sound. Worse case scenario I could go with the Xonar STX. mad.gif

Any thoughts?
post #2 of 24
Thread Starter 
bump
post #3 of 24
Thread Starter 
it's a slow day on head-fi I guess :/
post #4 of 24

May I suggest the NFB-12

I just got mine and the e7/e9 pales in comparison

I am running this for my grad 325's and the soundstage has blossomed and the distinctness and clarity of all types of music has improved many fold.

My opinion though.

I am running the DAC via optical inputs and no "flavour"(colour) jumpers on it.

 

check it out if you can 

post #5 of 24

[I have deleted my reply]

 


Edited by skip129 - 12/26/11 at 1:41pm
post #6 of 24
Thread Starter 
Anyone?
post #7 of 24
Quote:
Originally Posted by Maxtcc View Post

May I suggest the NFB-12

 

Wow - I'm glad to have discovered this one - thanks.  What an amazingly powerful amp - 10V RMS!  I'm in a similar situation as the base poster (Derelict), except I was hoping to find something that could also run from batteries.  I think I'll have to compromise, and get something like this NFB-12 for home use, and a small portable with much less output for mobile use, with more sensitive headphones. This NFB-12 looks like very good value for money, assuming it doesn't have any serious flaws. 

 

Greg.

post #8 of 24
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by skip129 View Post


Wow - I'm glad to have discovered this one - thanks.  What an amazingly powerful amp - 10V RMS!  I'm in a similar situation as the base poster (Derelict), except I was hoping to find something that could also run from batteries.  I think I'll have to compromise, and get something like this NFB-12 for home use, and a small portable with much less output for mobile use, with more sensitive headphones. This NFB-12 looks like very good value for money, assuming it doesn't have any serious flaws. 

Greg.

Hey Greg, do you think they could drive the DT 880's well?
post #9 of 24

There seems no doubt that they could drive them significantly louder than you'd ever conceivably want or need, but I suggest you hunt for reviews to see how they stand up subjectively. 

 

There's one little thing about Beyer headphones, though - their own amp (the A1) has an output impedance of 100 ohms, and when I contacted Beyer about this, they said they generally test their headphones with a 120 ohm output impedance, per some standard.  The NFB-12 has an output impedance of 2 ohms, so the frequency response may not be exactly the same as what the Beyer engineers aimed for. HOWEVER, if that is true (and I'm not even 100% sure it is true), you could easily fix that by adding some impedance on the output of the NFB-12. What you don't want is an amp with a high impedance, because there's nothing you can do to reduce it.  Knowing that the Beyer A1 amp has an impedance of 100 ohms, I just don't think I'd ever consider it - it's optimised for their own headphones only.

 

Greg.

 

 

post #10 of 24
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by skip129 View Post

There seems no doubt that they could drive them significantly louder than you'd ever conceivably want or need, but I suggest you hunt for reviews to see how they stand up subjectively. 

There's one little thing about Beyer headphones, though - their own amp (the A1) has an output impedance of 100 ohms, and when I contacted Beyer about this, they said they generally test their headphones with a 120 ohm output impedance, per some standard.  The NFB-12 has an output impedance of 2 ohms, so the frequency response may not be exactly the same as what the Beyer engineers aimed for. HOWEVER, if that is true (and I'm not even 100% sure it is true), you could easily fix that by adding some impedance on the output of the NFB-12. What you don't want is an amp with a high impedance, because there's nothing you can do to reduce it.  Knowing that the Beyer A1 amp has an impedance of 100 ohms, I just don't think I'd ever consider it - it's optimised for their own headphones only.

Greg.


Would the STX drive them well or just stick with the Audio-GD NFB-12?
post #11 of 24

Yes, the STX should also drive them as loudly as you like, but subjectively, I don't know.  The Stereophile review of the STX is very positive, FWIW. 

 

The STX has a higher output impedance (10 ohms), but I think that would only be an issue for low impedance headphones, especially some IEMs. It would not be a problem for your DT880, especially knowing that Beyer's amp has a much higher impedance anyway. Also, the NFB-12's 2 ohm impedance is still not low enough to be considered truly excellent by today's standards, it seems.

 

Greg.

post #12 of 24
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by skip129 View Post

Yes, the STX should also drive them as loudly as you like, but subjectively, I don't know.  The Stereophile review of the STX is very positive, FWIW. 

The STX has a higher output impedance (10 ohms), but I think that would only be an issue for low impedance headphones, especially some IEMs. It would not be a problem for your DT880, especially knowing that Beyer's amp has a much higher impedance anyway. Also, the NFB-12's 2 ohm impedance is still not low enough to be considered truly excellent by today's standards, it seems.

Greg.

so just get the STX and save money?
post #13 of 24

As a further comment on the NFB-12

I am unable to raise the volume beyond the 10 o'clock position for the volume level is to strong for me so,

there is plenty of clean sufficient power to drive the beyer's , the perception of the sound of course is subjective.

But for this amount of money, $200 plus shipping , I simply haven't found anything of the same quality and power for up to twice the price.

Also it has a 12db gain switch if you do need it , I don't find a use for it certainly not with the grado's.

The DAC unit is what I purchased it for and I love the choice esp, usb, coax, or optical, with optical at 192

but the amp has impressed me enough to solely use this unit now.

there is a long thread on here discussing it have a look, or better yet listen you will be surprised.

 

post #14 of 24

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Derelict View Post

so just get the STX and save money?

 

From what I've read, I'd be surprised if it didn't sound very good, and very accurate. I don't use a desktop, even at home, so it's of no use to me.  I'm taking a serious look at the NFB-12.

 

Greg.

 

post #15 of 24
Thread Starter 
If I want to watch movies on the DT 880's do I need to get a 5.1 sound card like the Xonar DG? If I do would the Xonar DG be enough or do I need to get something better?
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