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The Nameless Guide To PC Gaming Audio (with binaural headphone surround sound) - Page 119

post #1771 of 3032
The above setup sounds right to get Dolby headphone to work. As long as the u3 supports DH through digital out then you should be good.

I don't see any foreseeable issues.
post #1772 of 3032
It does. That's a hell of a setup.
post #1773 of 3032
Quote:
Originally Posted by DJINFERNO806 View Post

Well i guess we'll have to agree to disagree lol. 

I still think upgrading ZXR from the Z is a bigger upgrade in sound quality then to add an external amp.  It was for me anyway.  But at the same time I have never used the M-stage with the Z and seen its result so its just my opinion.
I don't think he's trying to disagree with you, I think he's trying to broaden your perpective. That the improvement in SQ that's audible to you, going from Z to ZxR, is probably due to other factors making a more significant difference than just the S:N. They could have the same S:N, but still sound different. Sticking to using an S:N as the sole measure of DAC quality is like saying the Ohm "rating" of an amp is the only measure of how good it will sound with a headphone... It's just not the complete picture.

To the person asking... $600 is more than I have to spend ons a birthday present, and I have a full time job, lol! Well... I did just buy a car in July, that downpayment was plenty higher than $600... but I'd been saving for a while. And August I bought a $500 computer, but I needed that too, and I use it to make money. On sheer entertainment equipment, I don't think I've spent $600 at one time on one thing.

The new AKG's are definitely hot products (I'm still enjoying my Q701, $200 used, slightly retuned sound signature but a $100 amp definitely did a fair job driving them with power to spare), and either sound card will do fine driving them. "I" might choose a Z hooked up to an external amp, because the amp can be used with other sources than just the computer (and I already have the amp). I think you can have the card process surround before sending it through the line-outs; I recommend researching further to find out for sure.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Akisunerai View Post

Quick question,

I plan on picking up the AKG K702-A's sometime in the next week or so (birthday gift to myself). Primarily being a PC gamer, I've lurked back and forth between MLEnvy's thread and this one here, that being said I saw it mentioned a few pages back that I could use the Asus Xonar U3 to run Dolby Headphones through a DAC/AMP (extremely appealing as I have a mini-ITX system without room for a internal card). So my question is... Would the following work correctly to get dolby surround coming from my planned headphone purhcase?

Computer > Xonar U3 (SPDIF Out) > AudioEngine D1* > Schiit Asgard 2 > K702-A
* To be replaced with the Schiit Bifrost sometime closer to christmas (not sure if it's going to be much of a difference but I want my stack to match)

P.S. Not sure if it's all good to post in here for my first post on the site so don't crucify me if it isn't

This is a soundcard thread, crucify, CRUCIFY!!!1! Kidding with ya.
Apparently I mixed together my memories of what the two people asking for tips said. Oh well.
The U3 (and U7) have been confirmed to send Dolby processed surround sound out through SPDIF, and of course the Shiit (and Audioengine) gear are very high quality. Possibly gear overkill for DH gaming, but at least you won't be underpowered.
If you've been reading MLE's post long enough to have seen Nameless & My posts, you'll know that while DH is Mad's favourite processing (and I respect that, it's part of my current console setup), but Nameless & I find DH a little limited and outdated compared to what Creative offers. Creative's processing can (if fed the data) create 3D surround compared to the 2D "ring of speakers" simulated by DH (and the very similar Silent Cinema). The good news is that there are people who like each of the different processing codecs. Ultimately, any surround makes a significant difference in gaming over stereo, and your preference (+ what hearing you are equipped with) will dictate which one you will enjoy the most.
post #1774 of 3032

Thanks for the feedback guys, it's appreciated. In regards to the whole Dolby Headphone vs CMSS-3D, I honestly wanted to try both but with my current PC setup I'm unable to do so as there does not seem to be a USB sound card out there that supports CMSS-3D output through Toslink/Digital Audio out let alone CMSS-3D in itself.

post #1775 of 3032
Isn't the X-fi Go! basically the CMSS-3D equivalent to the Xonar U3? It says THX tru Studio, but one of the points states CMSS-3D support.
Edited by Mad Lust Envy - 9/3/13 at 11:30pm
post #1776 of 3032

The X-Fi Go! Pro is the current version of little USB DAC-On-A-Stick devices, but there have been past versions. The current version does not have digital output to use a different DAC and just pass along CMSS-3D, but the bigger $70 one does (and other features besides, http://us.store.creative.com/Creative-Sound-Blaster-XFi-Surround-5.1/M/B0044DEDCA.htm). I can't tell for sure, but Creative's page on the X-Fi Go! Pro doesn't mention CMSS-3D anywhere and may not be on the current device.

post #1777 of 3032

My request for recommendations is eerily similar to Akisurenai's.  I just bought a pair of K702.65 a couple of weeks ago as a birthday gift for myself after agonizing over this thread and MLE's headphone thread.  I am currently using it with a Fiio E17 plugged into my PC and it works fairly well for music listening.  I'd like to get the Dolby Headphone for PC gaming through a decent USB DAC plus a separate amp because I don't want it to be locked down to just my PC when I want to move the "audio rig" to my laptop for instance (so no internal PCIe sound cards) which means:

 

PC or laptop > Asus Xonar U3 optical out > optical in of USB DAC > Amp > K702.65

 

I originally bought the E17 for use with my Galaxy S3 and future android tablet so I'm looking for a USB or AC powered desktop use DAC and a separate amp to drive the K702.65.  Are there any other USB DACs similar in features (optical input with 24/96+, USB input with 24/96, USB or AC powered) and price to the Audioengine D1?  A desktop version of the E17 with an analogue volume knob would have been perfect for me but Fiio doesn't make that (the E10 is close, but no optical input, which means no DH).  What about a desktop amp that pairs well with the K702.65?  O2?  Magni?  I don't really like the fixed 5x gain on the Magni in case I get some more sensitive/efficient headphones to use with it.  That and it's about $135+brokerage+taxes shipped to Canada, which is not far off from an O2 amp from AudioPoutine, which has the added feature of a high/low gain setting.  

 

What I'm basically after is a lower budget version of what Akisurenai is after.  His Bifrost+Asgard2 target is way out of my budget.  My budget is about $150USD each for the DAC and Amp (~$300-350 combined for DAC + Amp).  I do want a separate DAC and Amp so if I decide to get a tube amp in the future I can still use the DAC and move the other amp to another computer for maximum flexibility.  

 

I'm still fairly new to this hobby (I just got my first "audiophile" quality headphones ATH-AD700 just over 3 months ago) so I'm not sure what's available (in terms of DACs) and what amp pairs well with the K702.65.  

post #1778 of 3032
Optical input? Audio GD NFB 15.32 dac/amp. For less than $300, Tooooons of power, and usb and optical input. It will however not have analog input (so no using other dacs)

It also looks a bit weird.
Edited by Mad Lust Envy - 9/4/13 at 7:38pm
post #1779 of 3032
Quote:
Originally Posted by AvroArrow View Post
 

My request for recommendations is eerily similar to Akisurenai's.  I just bought a pair of K702.65 a couple of weeks ago as a birthday gift for myself after agonizing over this thread and MLE's headphone thread.  I am currently using it with a Fiio E17 plugged into my PC and it works fairly well for music listening.  I'd like to get the Dolby Headphone for PC gaming through a decent USB DAC plus a separate amp because I don't want it to be locked down to just my PC when I want to move the "audio rig" to my laptop for instance (so no internal PCIe sound cards) which means:

PC or laptop > Asus Xonar U3 optical out > optical in of USB DAC > Amp > K702.65

I originally bought the E17 for use with my Galaxy S3 and future android tablet so I'm looking for a USB or AC powered desktop use DAC and a separate amp to drive the K702.65.  Are there any other USB DACs similar in features (optical input with 24/96+, USB input with 24/96, USB or AC powered) and price to the Audioengine D1?  A desktop version of the E17 with an analogue volume knob would have been perfect for me but Fiio doesn't make that (the E10 is close, but no optical input, which means no DH).  What about a desktop amp that pairs well with the K702.65?  O2?  Magni?  I don't really like the fixed 5x gain on the Magni in case I get some more sensitive/efficient headphones to use with it.  That and it's about $135+brokerage+taxes shipped to Canada, which is not far off from an O2 amp from AudioPoutine, which has the added feature of a high/low gain setting.  

What I'm basically after is a lower budget version of what Akisurenai is after.  His Bifrost+Asgard2 target is way out of my budget.  My budget is about $150USD each for the DAC and Amp (~$300-350 combined for DAC + Amp).  I do want a separate DAC and Amp so if I decide to get a tube amp in the future I can still use the DAC and move the other amp to another computer for maximum flexibility.  

I'm still fairly new to this hobby (I just got my first "audiophile" quality headphones ATH-AD700 just over 3 months ago) so I'm not sure what's available (in terms of DACs) and what amp pairs well with the K702.65.  

Why not just go

PC or Laptop > Asus Xonar U3 optical out > optical in E17 > K702.65

You can always buy an optical DAC in the future, when you buy your tube amp.


Edited by PurpleAngel - 9/4/13 at 11:52pm
post #1780 of 3032
First posted at #1736

(Summary: using onboard sound, want headphones and positional audio for gaming, pretty low budget, say €75)

Thought I'd throw in my experiences and findings, based on advice here and some research of my own:

- My onboard realtek 892 will not do positional audio through headphones
- The upgrade in soundquality with half way decent headphones (over my crappy skype-style headset) and ofcourse good headphones is so enormous, it almost makes me forget about positional audio. I've tried Sennheiser PC150's and an AKG K701. The first was a big step up, but the AKG's... wow smily_headphones1.gif. Even though the last one is out of my pricerange, I'm now convinced I should spend the majority of my budget on headphones now.
- For a cheap but able soundcard, there seems to be not much choice besides the Asus Xonar DG(X). It gives me the virtual surround I think I want and an amp for the headphone at a very modest price. Even if binaural audio turns out to be a no-go for me, I'll still have nice sound.

Strategy for now: first the headphones, soundcard later.

I'm now looking at similar models as these two (per advice of PurpleAngel wink.gif ) that are locally available:

Takstar Hi2050 (Technical Pro HPT-990) semi-open headphones.

All in all: thanks!

Samson SR850 semi-open headphones.
post #1781 of 3032
Quote:
Originally Posted by AvroArrow View Post

My request for recommendations is eerily similar to Akisurenai's.  I just bought a pair of K702.65 a couple of weeks ago as a birthday gift for myself after agonizing over this thread and MLE's headphone thread.  I am currently using it with a Fiio E17 plugged into my PC and it works fairly well for music listening.  I'd like to get the Dolby Headphone for PC gaming through a decent USB DAC plus a separate amp because I don't want it to be locked down to just my PC when I want to move the "audio rig" to my laptop for instance (so no internal PCIe sound cards) which means:

PC or laptop > Asus Xonar U3 optical out > optical in of USB DAC > Amp > K702.65

...A desktop version of the E17 with an analogue volume knob would have been perfect for me but Fiio doesn't make that (the E10 is close, but no optical input, which means no DH)...
I do want a separate DAC and Amp so if I decide to get a tube amp in the future I can still use the DAC and move the other amp to another computer for maximum flexibility.

I mean... have you considered just mating the E17 to a FiiO E09k? Basically a desktop amp that the E17 docks into, sounds almost exactly like what you want. Plus, it's slightly warm, so in addition to firming up the Annie's sound it will also add a slight bit of body.
post #1782 of 3032
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mad Lust Envy View Post

Optical input? Audio GD NFB 15.32 dac/amp. For less than $300, Tooooons of power, and usb and optical input. It will however not have analog input (so no using other dacs)

It also looks a bit weird.

 

How picky/stable are the Audio GD DACs under Win7 x64?  I've skimmed the 15.32 and 11.32 threads and I keep seeing issues with picky firmware version, driver version, music player, WASAP/ASIO issues, etc.  At casual glance, it looks like a very finicky DAC.  I'm a function over form kinda guy so as long as it works well and is good bang for buck, I don't really care what it looks like.  I'd still prefer a separate DAC and Amp for more flexibility, but if this is the best bang for buck, then I'll have to dig a bit deeper.

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by PurpleAngel View Post
 

Why not just go

PC or Laptop > Asus Xonar U3 optical out > optical in E17 > K702.65

You can always buy an optical DAC in the future, when you buy your tube amp.

 

The E17 is destined for portable use with my phone/tablet and/or laptop use, that's why I want a desktop rig for my main PC.

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Evshrug View Post


I mean... have you considered just mating the E17 to a FiiO E09k? Basically a desktop amp that the E17 docks into, sounds almost exactly like what you want. Plus, it's slightly warm, so in addition to firming up the Annie's sound it will also add a slight bit of body.

 

I've been doing some reading on some guy's blog site about matching amps to headphones and while some of the math is a bit over my head, 1 thing did stick out.  The output impedance of the headphone jack of the amp should be 1/8 or less of the headphone impedance.  So assuming that's a good guideline, the 10 Ohm output impedance of the E09k is too high for the 62 Ohm of the K702.65 and even worse for the 32 Ohm of the ATH-AD700.  That and having used the E17 for a while now, I really, really want an amp with an analog volume knob.  The up/down button on the E17 is kinda annoying to use because of the timing.  I initially thought the volume buttons on it where flakey/broken until I figured out that I needed faster timing between presses to change the volume.  Like I mentioned before, if Fiio made a desktop version of the E17 with an analog volume knob, I'd be all over it.  Heck, if there was an ODAC with an optical in, I'd be all over that.   

post #1783 of 3032

The only issues i had with mine is the DirectKS in the driver has a mind of its own and some times dont work. While others don't have that issue. So for a work around I used ASio4all for my music recording work, and Wasapi for music listening.  But other then that It been working great.  But i really think its  my usb controllers on my mobo is flaky as it been acting up lately disabling on boot.

post #1784 of 3032

Im a bit new to audio at this level. 7.1 from the Xonar U3 via optical to a dac like the audio engine D1 is going to retain the 7.1 correct? As I understand it the U3 isnt good enough by itself to drive the philips X1 headphones? Sorry if the question sounded silly. I'm a pc only gamer without room for a soundcard. would an amp be required for the X1's in addition to the U3 and dac?

 

Thankyou for any and all responses. I'm so thankful for the community here otherwise I would be 100% lost :P

post #1785 of 3032
What do you mean by 7.1? Like the Dolby digital live signal going out or the Dolby headphone encoded stereo signal(7.1 virtual surround).

The d1 is a stereo DAC so it won't be able to convert multichannel audio or it will just drop the other channels or down sample them to stereo.

If you meant sending Dolby headphone out, then its just a regular stereo signal with an algorithm .

You'll be fine in that case.
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