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Trouble pushing Sennheiser HD 650 with a Graham Slee Novo Amp.

post #1 of 31
Thread Starter 

Hello,

 

I recently purchased a Graham Slee Novo amp, and a pair of Sennheiser HD 650's. I just got them all hooked up today, connected to my PC, and I am having incredible difficulty driving the HD 650's (I have to turn the knob on the Amp up to 2-3 0'clock to get to a point where I am comfortable listening to them (which is almost maxed out)).

 

This seems strange to me, as most people always say turning their amp up to 10 o'clock or so hurts their ears with the HD 650's.

 

Can anyone give me some assistance to why this would be happening?

 

The Graham Slee Novo is quite small, is it a matter of size? Do I need to get a bigger amp?

 

Please help!

post #2 of 31

How are you connecting your amp to your computer?  Line out or headphone jack?  They will be different.

post #3 of 31
Thread Starter 

Hello,

 

Currently I am connecting directly from the mini output, I run mini-to-RCA to the Graham Slee Novo, and then I have the headphones plugged into the Graham Slee Novo.

post #4 of 31

Your mini output must have low power.  Your typical CD player has an output of 2 volts.  If your line out is 1 volt, or even 0.5 volts, it would be normal to have to turn up your amp a lot more.

 

You could get a USB DAC to feed your amp.  A good DAC will output at about 2 volts.
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Androktasiai View Post

Hello,

 

Currently I am connecting directly from the mini output, I run mini-to-RCA to the Graham Slee Novo, and then I have the headphones plugged into the Graham Slee Novo.



 

post #5 of 31
Thread Starter 

That's kind of what I was thinking.

 

Do you think the Schiit BiFrost would pair well with the Graham Slee Novo Amp and HD 650s?

 

Or, do you think the Asgard/Bifrost set-up would be better than using the Graham Slee? 

 

Im so disappointed I just got the Graham Slee off another user from on here, and it's not producing what I had hoped.

 

Otherwise, any recommendation on a good DAC?

 

Thanks,

post #6 of 31
Thread Starter 

Let me go try my sennheisers off my Onkyo TX-SR806 on my home theater directly from the 1/4" and see what happens.

 

I just built my computer like 3-4 months ago, its top notch, but maybe the headphone output just sucks :-(

post #7 of 31

Many great DACs out there.  What is your budget?
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Androktasiai View Post

That's kind of what I was thinking.

 

Do you think the Schiit BiFrost would pair well with the Graham Slee Novo Amp and HD 650s?

 

Or, do you think the Asgard/Bifrost set-up would be better than using the Graham Slee? 

 

Im so disappointed I just got the Graham Slee off another user from on here, and it's not producing what I had hoped.

 

Otherwise, any recommendation on a good DAC?

 

Thanks,



 

I hate to say it, but most headphone jacks and lineouts on soundcards are poorly implemented these days. 
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Androktasiai View Post

Let me go try my sennheisers off my Onkyo TX-SR806 on my home theater directly from the 1/4" and see what happens.

 

I just built my computer like 3-4 months ago, its top notch, but maybe the headphone output just sucks :-(



 

post #8 of 31
Thread Starter 

I just tried them out on my Onkyo TX-SR806 Receiver, and I had to turn the reciever up to -10.0 dB (which is from reference I believe). That is higher than I have ever had to turn up that receiver to get to a point where I was comfortable listening to anything.

 

So I have to think it has something to do with the headphones themselves.

post #9 of 31
Thread Starter 

I would be willing to spend up to around the price of the Schiit BiFrost (around $450 or so) for a DAC

post #10 of 31

Not sure of the exact cause, but my HD600s seem pretty easy to drive.  I don't have to crank the volume to hear much.

 

Describe your exact setup.  What feeds what, and in what order.  Are there any volume limiters anywhere else in the chain?

post #11 of 31
Thread Starter 

I have a computer that I built that uses a ASUStek P8P67 PRO motherboard with Audio listed on their site as:

 

Realtek® ALC 892 8-Channel High Definition Audio CODEC 
- Supports : Jack-detection, Multi-streaming, Front Panel Jack-retasking
Audio Feature :
- Absolute Pitch 192kHz/ 24-bit True BD Lossless Sound
- Blu-ray audio layer Content Protection 
- DTS Surround Sensation UltraPC 
- Coaxial and Optical S/PDIF out ports at back panel

 

This is ON-BOARD audio, not a separate card.

 

The headphone jack(mini-output) is on the top of the case (Lian-Li K67 Case which is wired to the motherboard) Not actually using the stereo out on the back of the computer.

 

To the headphone jack I have connected Milian Acoustics Silver-Plated Continuous Cast Copper Mini-to-RCA Interconnect.

 

This Interconnect then connects to the back of the Graham Slee Novo Amp using the Gold Plated RCA plugs from the Milian Acoustic cable.

 

The Amp is sitting on my computer desk, and then the headphones (stock Sennheiser cables) are plugged into the front of the Graham Slee Novo using the Standard 1/4" Plug.

post #12 of 31
Thread Starter 

http://www.asus.com/Motherboards/Intel_Socket_1155/P8P67_PRO/#specifications

 

Thats a link to my motherboard that I used for my current computer build.

post #13 of 31

Try using this instead of your headphone out.  As a rule, you should only plug headphones into a headphone jack, not another amp.

 

Also, go into your sound settings on the computer and see if there are any volume limiters or pre-amp functions. 

 

I bet tweaking these things will fix your problems.
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Androktasiai View Post

I have a computer that I built that uses a ASUStek P8P67 PRO motherboard with Audio listed on their site as:

 

Realtek® ALC 892 8-Channel High Definition Audio CODEC 
- Supports : Jack-detection, Multi-streaming, Front Panel Jack-retasking
Audio Feature :
- Absolute Pitch 192kHz/ 24-bit True BD Lossless Sound
- Blu-ray audio layer Content Protection 
- DTS Surround Sensation UltraPC 
- Coaxial and Optical S/PDIF out ports at back panel

 

This is ON-BOARD audio, not a separate card.

 

The headphone jack(mini-output) is on the top of the case (Lian-Li K67 Case which is wired to the motherboard) Not actually using the stereo out on the back of the computer.

 

To the headphone jack I have connected Milian Acoustics Silver-Plated Continuous Cast Copper Mini-to-RCA Interconnect.

 

This Interconnect then connects to the back of the Graham Slee Novo Amp using the Gold Plated RCA plugs from the Milian Acoustic cable.

 

The Amp is sitting on my computer desk, and then the headphones (stock Sennheiser cables) are plugged into the front of the Graham Slee Novo using the Standard 1/4" Plug.



 

post #14 of 31
Thread Starter 

Computer Mixer shows:

 

Volume Mixer.jpg

post #15 of 31

Try the stereo out.  It's a better signal for amping.

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