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The Nameless Guide To PC Gaming Audio (with binaural headphone surround sound) - Page 155

post #2311 of 3016
Quote:
Originally Posted by valid8 View Post
 

 

At the moment I own a pair of in-ear Fidelio S2 for my mobile/on-the-go music and the reviews and opinions of the Fidelio X1 look pretty good. What would be a good bang for the buck to get the best out of these headphones, in a game like BF4 on a Sabertooth 990FX with Win 7 64 bit?

 

 

You can either go with just a soundcard and let it do the processing the DAC conversion and the amping (with it's integrated amp).  OR you can just let the soundcard apply the virtual surround processing than send it out to an optical DAC then feed the signal to an external amp. The latter obviously costs more, but you could also use it for music listening too of course.

 

The X1s aren't hard to drive so you don't need a monster amp with them.  An amp like the Magni would probably be overkill for them.  The gain may be too high, forcing you to stay too low on the volume pot - where the channel imbalance issues are.  I'm not sure if there are any other <$100 desktop amps with low output impedance and either low gain settings and/or lower power output.


Edited by chicolom - 12/29/13 at 12:06am
post #2312 of 3016

I'm still flip-flopping between getting a 4670K or a 4770K for $50 more....If it was $100 more I'd say no, but for $50...:rolleyes:  I can afford either of them.

Someone talk me into one or the other... :popcorn:

 

 

For an SSD, I looked at the options/recommendations and then ordered a Samsung 840 EVO 250 GB.  It seems to be one of the top recommendations, but please let me know if I should consider something else instead!  I looked into the 840 Pro SSD, but I'm not sure I'd notice the speed differences outside of benchmarks, while I would notice the higher/cheaper capacity on the EVO.  Also the lifespan on the TCL EVO should still be plenty long for your typical (non write-heavy) environment.

 

 

For motherboards, I've been wanting Microcenter to put some Asus Z87 boards on sale, but they're being a stubborn about it.  Actually I just checked and now all the Z87 Asus boards are sold out at my local Microcenter.  :(

There might be a Gigabyte Z87X-UD4H on sale for $139, which seems to be pretty solid.  Otherwise I guess I'll have to just wait a bit...

post #2313 of 3016
Quote:
Originally Posted by chicolom View Post
 

 

 

You can either go with just a soundcard and let it do the processing the DAC conversion and the amping (with it's integrated amp).  OR you can just let the soundcard apply the virtual surround processing than send it out to an optical DAC then feed the signal to an external amp. The latter obviously costs more, but you could also use it for music listening too of course.

 

The X1s aren't hard to drive so you don't need a monster amp with them.  An amp like the Magni would probably be overkill for them.  The gain may be too high, forcing you to stay too low on the volume pot - where the channel imbalance issues are.  I'm not sure if there are any other <$100 desktop amps with low output impedance and either low gain settings and/or lower power output.

 

How about something like the Asus U7? It has a decent soundcard inside plus a decent amp, at least enough to handle the X1s, as I read some pages back these headphones aren't so demanding for amping. Would I still need the optical DAC for that?

 

Oh if I may...I'd suggest, go with the 4670K ...if you're mainly gaming the difference between the two is very insignificant, especially at FullHD and above resolutions. If you're hardcore into rendering and similar maybe it might be worth it...but we're talking 20% average in the best case scenario, so really stretching it here IMHO...just go i5 4670K with good mobo plus decent cooler for OC to get the best out of it, and save your 50$ for, I don't know...maybe Broadwell? ;)  


Edited by valid8 - 12/29/13 at 3:45am
post #2314 of 3016
Quote:
Originally Posted by chicolom View Post

I'm still flip-flopping between getting a 4670K or a 4770K for $50 more....If it was $100 more I'd say no, but for $50...rolleyes.gif   I can afford either of them.
Someone talk me into one or the other... popcorn.gif


For an SSD, I looked at the options/recommendations and then ordered a Samsung 840 EVO 250 GB.  It seems to be one of the top recommendations, but please let me know if I should consider something else instead!  I looked into the 840 Pro SSD, but I'm not sure I'd notice the speed differences outside of benchmarks, while I would notice the higher/cheaper capacity on the EVO.  Also the lifespan on the TCL EVO should still be plenty long for your typical (non write-heavy) environment.


For motherboards, I've been wanting Microcenter to put some Asus Z87 boards on sale, but they're being a stubborn about it.  Actually I just checked and now all the Z87 Asus boards are sold out at my local Microcenter.  frown.gif
There might be a Gigabyte Z87X-UD4H on sale for $139, which seems to be pretty solid.  Otherwise I guess I'll have to just wait a bit...

A year ago I would have said i5 for gaming but now with the new next gen ports around the corner, I think hyperthreading will come into play a lot more.

Especially if we start to see more cry engine, UE4 and frostbite engine games which all use 4+ cores beautifully.

Just future proof and go with the i7 and call it a day. Like you said, you can afford it so just do it.
post #2315 of 3016

Yea I agree getting a I7 now is a good move, that way you don't regret not getting it when you need the use of Hyper threading and not have it. Since I planning on keeping my 1155 Z77 for a long time I regret not getting a I7 over a I5,because I thought I may not have any uses for hyper threading,Well I do now.

post #2316 of 3016
Originally Posted by chicolom View Post

The X1s aren't hard to drive so you don't need a monster amp with them.  An amp like the Magni would probably be overkill for them.  The gain may be too high, forcing you to stay too low on the volume pot - where the channel imbalance issues are.  I'm not sure if there are any other <$100 desktop amps with low output impedance and either low gain settings and/or lower power output.

The O2 can easily be adjusted internally for different gain settings down to 1x (it's got an external gain switch too). You could conceivably order your unit at 1x gain.

post #2317 of 3016
Quote:
Originally Posted by chicolom View Post
 

 

 

You can either go with just a soundcard and let it do the processing the DAC conversion and the amping (with it's integrated amp).  OR you can just let the soundcard apply the virtual surround processing than send it out to an optical DAC then feed the signal to an external amp. The latter obviously costs more, but you could also use it for music listening too of course.

 

Is it essential to use a DAC before the AMP if you're already going through the soundcard? Hasn't the soundcard DAC already sorted the sound, and isn't it just a matter of sending that sound up to the AMP for boosting? Why the extra DAC?

 

Cheers

 

P.S Get the i7 and be done with it...seriously, you'll need the processing power going forward.


Edited by motorwayne - 12/29/13 at 10:12am
post #2318 of 3016

Magni or O2 for AMP after X-Fi/ZxR?

 

Someone said the Magni colored the sound more than the O2, anyone with experience in either of these?

 

Cheers

post #2319 of 3016

Motorwayne... in this situation you're completely missing out the DAC on your soundcard. I will be doing that soon when I get my external DAC/Amp. It seems a bit of a waste of a soundcard, but you're getting to use it's Surround DSP's and it's superior control panel. With my SBZ it's got great microphone settings too.

 

If you've got an expensive STX or a ZxR, and you go optical then you're doing it wrong.

post #2320 of 3016
Oh ok. What I was thinking was you would run the feed from the hp out into an external AMP, that way its using the card DAC.

so you're saying external DAC is better in terms of quality?
Edited by motorwayne - 12/29/13 at 11:24am
post #2321 of 3016

MW - yes yes - sorry .. of course you can do that too. With the Xonars use the line-outs.. with the SBZ's use the HP out.

post #2322 of 3016

Thanks for the CPU advice everyone.  ;)

 

Quote:

Originally Posted by motorwayne View Post
 

 

Is it essential to use a DAC before the AMP if you're already going through the soundcard? Hasn't the soundcard DAC already sorted the sound, and isn't it just a matter of sending that sound up to the AMP for boosting? Why the extra DAC?

 

Cheers

 

No, it's not essential. 

 

I was just trying to show the two main paths you could take: one where the soundcard does everything and one where the soundcard only does the software processing.  You can mix and match any way you like. 

 

I wouldn't necessarily recommend using an external DAC if you already have a higher end soundcard with a decent DAC in it, unless your external DAC is even higher end (like a Schiit Bifrost). 

post #2323 of 3016

Damnit Microcenter! 

 

The 4770k is on sale the whole time the motherboard I want is out of stock.  So I had to wait.  Now they should be getting new motherboard shipments in this week, but they've taken the 4770k off sale again. :mad:  Just keep it on sale already!!

post #2324 of 3016

Hold up!! Don't know if the prices have come down in real terms yet but: http://www.guru3d.com/news_story/intel_lowers_prices_on_cpus.html

post #2325 of 3016
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by chicolom View Post

Damnit Microcenter! 

 

The 4770k is on sale the whole time the motherboard I want is out of stock.  So I had to wait.  Now they should be getting new motherboard shipments in this week, but they've taken the 4770k off sale again. :mad:  Just keep it on sale already!!

 

I feel really glad that I managed to not only snag an i7-4770K for $200 prior to Black Friday, but also an Asus ROG Maximus VI Hero for just $130 due to open-box discount + $30 combo discount...

 

Of course, I'm still envious of those Intel Retail Edge-qualified folks and their sub-$200 i7-4930Ks!

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