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FiiO E10 Line Out > Headphone Out?

post #1 of 12
Thread Starter 

I've tested again and again, the sound quality from Line Out flat out beats the Headphone Out; it's as if you lose a lot of bass when you choose Headphone Out.

 

Can someone shed some light on this?

 

Setup:

WMP 11 FLAC -> FiiO E10 -> AKG K240 MKII


Edited by Egaku - 1/7/12 at 4:29pm
post #2 of 12
Quote:
Originally Posted by Egaku View Post

I've tested again and again, the sound quality from Line Out flat out beats the Headphone Out; it's as if you lose a lot of bass when you choose Headphone Out.

 

Can someone shed some light on this?

 

Setup:

WMP 11 FLAC -> FiiO E10 -> AKG K240 MKII


Can't say I hear the same thing. HO on my E10 definitely has a more textured bass and slightly better impact.

 

post #3 of 12
Thread Starter 

After further listening, the Line Out seems to give more but muddy bass, while the HO gives less but punchier bass.

 

By the way, what headphones are you using? I read somewhere that says Line Out has a high impedance or something, my headphones are relatively low (55ohms).

post #4 of 12
Quote:
Originally Posted by Egaku View Post

After further listening, the Line Out seems to give more but muddy bass, while the HO gives less but punchier bass.

 

By the way, what headphones are you using? I read somewhere that says Line Out has a high impedance or something, my headphones are relatively low (55ohms).


I was using a RE0 when listening earlier. The impedance of line-out is definitely quite high. Around 550ohm if my measurement is correct.

 

post #5 of 12

Like many headphones, there's a hump in the impedance vs. frequency around the mid-bass.

 

rz.png

 

Higher output impedance means worse damping factor, so maybe worse control over the drivers.  The difference in bass quantity is easily explained by the headphone impedance graph, since the voltage the headphones see is split between the source impedance and headphone impedance.

 

V_L = V_s * Z_L / (Z_s + Z_L)

 

At a given frequency, load voltage is the source voltage multiplied by the ratio of load (headphone) impedance to the sum of the source and load impedances.  If Z_s is mostly constant across frequency, we see that at a particular frequency, Z_L / (Z_s + Z_L) is larger if Z_L is larger.  Thus V_L is relatively high when Z_L is high, which is around the 90 Hz region and also around up to 20 kHz.  If Z_s is small, like with the headphone out, Z_L / (Z_s + Z_L) is close to 1 for all frequencies so there's little frequency shift.  If Z_s is significant compared to Z_L, then you'll get significant shifts, giving you more (mid)bass and highest treble, compared to other frequencies.

 

Worse control over drivers--or just excessive midbass--can easily make the sound more muddy.  However, the line out furthermore isn't intended to driving headphones, so you can probably also expect significantly increased distortion from that as well, on top of any issues related to worse damping factor and frequency response shift.

post #6 of 12

does that mean you can't use it with low impedance phones? I just ordered an e10 for my LD and grad set up

post #7 of 12
Quote:
Originally Posted by Melvins View Post

does that mean you can't use it with low impedance phones? I just ordered an e10 for my LD and grad set up


We are talking about the line-out on the above posts. You can use low impedance headphone with the headphone-out without any problem.

 

post #8 of 12

but to just use the DAC of the e10, since i have the LD1+ as my amp, wouldn't i need to use the line out?

post #9 of 12

Quote:
Originally Posted by Melvins View Post

but to just use the DAC of the e10, since i have the LD1+ as my amp, wouldn't i need to use the line out?


No the issue is just if you connect the line out directly to headphones, which is generally just a bad idea.  It's not intended for that.  If you connect the line out to an amp, the amp won't present much of a load to the line out, so it should work properly with none of the issues described.

 

post #10 of 12

iiii seeee

post #11 of 12

It sounds exactly the same if I use the headphone out, just with more bass.....since the bass...well yeah.

post #12 of 12

Can i use headphone with volume control or add an extension cable with volume control? The line-out from my DAP sounds so good.

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