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Best general purpose audio (headset, amp) for a desktop computer. And mic.

post #1 of 12
Thread Starter 

Hi. First post here.

 

Thought this would be the best place to start inquiring.

 

My gear:

 

Xonar DG

Sony MDR-XD100

Zalman ZM1 Clip-on mic

 

Yeah, budget stuff. I've been about to improve my audio for a long time for now. Just didn't know where to start. I wasn't exactly keen on getting an external amplifier.

 

Bought Xonar DG from a sale, and I was quite unsure if I could even notice any difference on those headphones. Well, I did. The difference was a significant one, especially in bass, vocals and the clarity in general. However, budget gear is still budget gear. I kind of like the headphones, because they're... well, comfortable to wear and do the job alright.

 

But what the amp did was give me the idea of getting a good headphone amplifier and then much better headphones for the computer instead of an external amplifier. I've also been wondering about upgrading the mic; while the Zalman makes my voice recognizeable in terms of "what words I'm saying", that's all what it can do.

 

My use goes as follows: Games, music > movies. I like to listen music a lot. When it comes to games, I tend to play more of the RTS-style games, though the occasional TF2 or CS:GO is something I like to have in between. Meaning that positional audio can be useful, but it is not necessarily the priority, especially if I have to give up on a lot if I want it to be at an acceptable level. As for music, I'm pretty much listening to... everything. Well maybe not too much Jazz/Soul/Classic, but you get the drill.

 

The headphones should be ones which I can wear comfortably for a long time, and they should have good sound quality.

 

I'm thinking of a budget of around 300€, can go over it if necessary - if the gains are high enough. I mean, that I can even bang around 600€ if needed, but I need good recommendations to do so! This can also include another headphone amp.

 

I probably have a possibility to buy the Essence ST for around 150€ used, and it would have the add-on card as well. I doubt I'll use the 7.1 sounds or anything any time soon (any 7.1 set worth buying would blow the budget out of proportion, and I live in a student apartment where the use of such a set would be fairly limited) but naturally the option would be nice to have. Sadly it's on the PCI-port though. PCI is getting phased out. The number of those ports is already going down and some motherboards may not have any of those ports at all. PCI-E is better (as a connection) from this standpoint.

 

At one point I thought just to "screw it, I'll get the xonar xense since it's going for around 200€ now" but I've been only hearing bad things about the bundled Sennheisers. Also, the headphones might not be as high end (or middle-end, depending on the perspective I guess) as I'd want them to be.

 

And then we have the mic. I've been mostly thinking of AT2020 USB or the 3.5 mm version. Blue yeti is in this budget range as well. Pretty much what I'd want to hear from the speak is not just the words I speak, but also the tone on those spoken words.

 

The mic is absolutely not a necessity but I was thinking that around ~100€. I could get the USB-version of AT2020, used, for around the same price as the 3.5mm version. Which would be a better bet? I was basically thinking a mic that I would use, possibly, for youtube stuff. If not, at least my skype calls would gain a whole new level of clarity. :)

 

I'm not also only thinking of the used only stuff, if there's good stuff you can buy as new, that'd be great. Just listing them up since they are not the obvious options.

 

I'm pretty much looking for the same solution that applies to general computer hardware. "90% of the performance for 50% of the price" - though for the audio stuff, I'm willing to blow some bucks because frankly, they're supposed to last much longer. I know that I'll probably upgrade the GPU next year, and I'd probably want to keep the same (expensive) headphones for as long as possible instead of doing the same with them.

 

Yeah, I know, "go out and listen to the kind of headphones you want to hear." I know that's kind of the best solution. However, before I go out and take the bus to travel around stores (which are of limited quantity) I'd like to know what options I have and what would be your recommendations. Because, well, my experience with audio gear is - obviously - extremely limited.

 

Thanks if you read through the whole TLDR thing, and even more thanks if you can reply.


Edited by computeraudio - 6/20/12 at 4:55am
post #2 of 12

In terms of all your preferences, the Beyerdynamic MMX 300 is an outstanding choice. I own it myself. It's the only "gaming" headphone I have tested that is also very musical. Believe when I say that I've tried them all, the list is too long for $100+ PC headphones. Also, the mic is aviation grade and you and your friends will be totally shocked how good it sounds. The headphones are closed, so you won't be bothered with environmental sounds. It also comes with a USB connector which is nice for connecting to a laptop on the go, at work, or just being mobile in general.

 

For the DAC/Amp, I highly recommend the Xonar Essence ST/STX, which I also own, has very similar features of the DG, but better all the way around. The amp drives the MMX 300's very nicely.

 

Buy it, you won't regret it. If you desire, you can spend as much time and money demoing all this gear like I did and find out the exact same thing :)

Quote:
Originally Posted by computeraudio View Post

Hi. First post here.

 

Thought this would be the best place to start inquiring.

 

My gear:

 

Xonar DG

Sony MDR-XD100

Zalman ZM1 Clip-on mic

 

Yeah, budget stuff. I've been about to improve my audio for a long time for now. Just didn't know where to start. I wasn't exactly keen on getting an external amplifier.

 

Bought Xonar DG from a sale, and I was quite unsure if I could even notice any difference on those headphones. Well, I did. The difference was a significant one, especially in bass, vocals and the clarity in general. However, budget gear is still budget gear. I kind of like the headphones, because they're... well, comfortable to wear and do the job alright.

 

But what the amp did was give me the idea of getting a good headphone amplifier and then much better headphones for the computer instead of an external amplifier. I've also been wondering about upgrading the mic; while the Zalman makes my voice recognizeable in terms of "what words I'm saying", that's all what it can do.

 

My use goes as follows: Games, music > movies. I like to listen music a lot. When it comes to games, I tend to play more of the RTS-style games, though the occasional TF2 or CS:GO is something I like to have in between. Meaning that positional audio can be useful, but it is not necessarily the priority, especially if I have to give up on a lot if I want it to be at an acceptable level. As for music, I'm pretty much listening to... everything. Well maybe not too much Jazz/Soul/Classic, but you get the drill.

 

The headphones should be ones which I can wear comfortably for a long time, and they should have good sound quality.

 

I'm thinking of a budget of around 300€, can go over it if necessary - if the gains are high enough. I mean, that I can even bang around 600€ if needed, but I need good recommendations to do so! This can also include another headphone amp.

 

I probably have a possibility to buy the Essence ST for around 150€ used, and it would have the add-on card as well. I doubt I'll use the 7.1 sounds or anything any time soon (any 7.1 set worth buying would blow the budget out of proportion, and I live in a student apartment where the use of such a set would be fairly limited) but naturally the option would be nice to have. Sadly it's on the PCI-port though. PCI is getting phased out. The number of those ports is already going down and some motherboards may not have any of those ports at all. PCI-E is better (as a connection) from this standpoint.

 

At one point I thought just to "screw it, I'll get the xonar xense since it's going for around 200€ now" but I've been only hearing bad things about the bundled Sennheisers. Also, the headphones might not be as high end (or middle-end, depending on the perspective I guess) as I'd want them to be.

 

And then we have the mic. I've been mostly thinking of AT2020 USB or the 3.5 mm version. Blue yeti is in this budget range as well. Pretty much what I'd want to hear from the speak is not just the words I speak, but also the tone on those spoken words.

 

The mic is absolutely not a necessity but I was thinking that around ~100€. I could get the USB-version of AT2020, used, for around the same price as the 3.5mm version. Which would be a better bet? I was basically thinking a mic that I would use, possibly, for youtube stuff. If not, at least my skype calls would gain a whole new level of clarity. :)

 

I'm not also only thinking of the used only stuff, if there's good stuff you can buy as new, that'd be great. Just listing them up since they are not the obvious options.

 

I'm pretty much looking for the same solution that applies to general computer hardware. "90% of the performance for 50% of the price" - though for the audio stuff, I'm willing to blow some bucks because frankly, they're supposed to last much longer. I know that I'll probably upgrade the GPU next year, and I'd probably want to keep the same (expensive) headphones for as long as possible instead of doing the same with them.

 

Yeah, I know, "go out and listen to the kind of headphones you want to hear." I know that's kind of the best solution. However, before I go out and take the bus to travel around stores (which are of limited quantity) I'd like to know what options I have and what would be your recommendations. Because, well, my experience with audio gear is - obviously - extremely limited.

 

Thanks if you read through the whole TLDR thing, and even more thanks if you can reply.


Edited by brunk - 6/21/12 at 8:21am
post #3 of 12
Thread Starter 

Oh, thanks. I wasn't looking for a complete set of headphones but those look very interesting. I did some research on them. Well, reviews say that they are awesome and mic is great - from a youtube (as much as I tried with my current headset and the YT quality...) video I could judge them to be very clear for a mic like that. It didn't match the AT2020 as far as I could hear, and seemed to pick up a bit else (like echoes and stuff but it could be his setup) but for my uses, more than enough.

 

So basically what I found out:

 

Costs around ~300€, best I managed to find was 260€ and it would be in stock. The USB-soundcard could be handy for rare cases when using a laptop, but nothing I'm really especially interested in. Carrying bag was a bit of a ??? though, none of the stores list is as a piece of equipment and bayer sells it separately (though even the soundcard is sold separately... and youtube vids say it's bundled. Duh!) I presume it comes with, would make no sense without.

 

QPAD QH-1339 is practically a re-brand of this afaik. Costs a bit less than 300€, looks a bit different but for the most part, the same. Still, I checked amazon and still the MX 300 managed to be cheaper in Finland, which is a rare occurance indeed.

 

I believe I could live without the mute buttons and so on. I've never actually owned a good headset or headphones for that matter, only some better-than-average speakers.

 

The only thing that's holding me back right now is that people say it's basically the same thing as a the Bayerdynamic 770 with a good mic integrated and USB-soundcard bundled. The 770 is going for a good 120€ less (145+postage fees). Those are the 80 ohm versions though. The headset is 32, and the anniversary edition is going for around 180 instead... and I would have to order it from a shop that seems to have been working for a good while but only has some branch here and as such is online only in Finland. Meh. I presume that with a simple pc-soundcard the 32 ohm versions are going to be more ideal. Or how "terrible" would the 80 ohm DT770 be with something like that, I don't know... really. Haven't used any of the better headsets or headphones in the past, basically just speakers.

 

I'm not pinching pennies to the end on this... I simply don't want to pay for air :P They look pretty cool on the aesthetic side of things as well.

 

I'm pretty sure that anything I'd get would be a huge upgrade, that's for sure.

 

Basically it comes down to this. Would it be a good buy at 260€ if I want a...

 

-decent quality mic (doesn't really matter if it's on a table or in the headphones, headphones is naturally a plus but for most uses the ZM-1 is well enough when abroad, "I can live with it")

-good quality, general purpose headphones without a "real" dedicated amplifier but with the one that comes from i.e the asus xonar cards

 

That over the ~180€ (32 ohm) DT770's or the DT770 (80 ohm) 140-150€ and a mic that I'd put on the table.

 

Music is a bit more into the heavier stuff, but like said before it's still pretty much everything.


Edited by computeraudio - 6/22/12 at 5:28pm
post #4 of 12

have you considered the PC360 by Sennheiser?

 

I own a pair myself and they are really well suited for gaming. Extremely comfortable, the microphone is sturdy, ( I always have fear on those bendy straw microphone) the microphone also have the simplest mute system. They are opened so you can actually hear if someone is calling you and also serve has a ventilation allowing you to wear them for longer duration. The volume control is on the right ear and is a simple rotating knob. The headphone is quite sturdy to. I have dropped it from table height, I also pulled in the cord by mistake and they are still working perfectly.

 

Coupled with an ASUS xonar STX or ST could make you quite a set up.

post #5 of 12
Quote:
Originally Posted by computeraudio View Post
Oh, thanks. I wasn't looking for a complete set of headphones but those look very interesting. I did some research on them. Well, reviews say that they are awesome and mic is great - from a youtube (as much as I tried with my current headset and the YT quality...) video I could judge them to be very clear for a mic like that. It didn't match the AT2020 as far as I could hear, and seemed to pick up a bit else (like echoes and stuff but it could be his setup) but for my uses, more than enough.

So basically what I found out:

Costs around ~300€, best I managed to find was 260€ and it would be in stock. The USB-soundcard could be handy for rare cases when using a laptop, but nothing I'm really especially interested in. Carrying bag was a bit of a ??? though, none of the stores list is as a piece of equipment and bayer sells it separately (though even the soundcard is sold separately... and youtube vids say it's bundled. Duh!) I presume it comes with, would make no sense without.

QPAD QH-1339 is practically a re-brand of this afaik. Costs a bit less than 300€, looks a bit different but for the most part, the same. Still, I checked amazon and still the MX 300 managed to be cheaper in Finland, which is a rare occurance indeed.

I believe I could live without the mute buttons and so on. I've never actually owned a good headset or headphones for that matter, only some better-than-average speakers.

The only thing that's holding me back right now is that people say it's basically the same thing as a the Bayerdynamic 770 with a good mic integrated and USB-soundcard bundled. The 770 is going for a good 120€ less (145+postage fees). Those are the 80 ohm versions though. The headset is 32, and the anniversary edition is going for around 180 instead... and I would have to order it from a shop that seems to have been working for a good while but only has some branch here and as such is online only in Finland. Meh. I presume that with a simple pc-soundcard the 32 ohm versions are going to be more ideal. Or how "terrible" would the 80 ohm DT770 be with something like that, I don't know... really. Haven't used any of the better headsets or headphones in the past, basically just speakers.

I'm not pinching pennies to the end on this... I simply don't want to pay for air :P They look pretty cool on the aesthetic side of things as well.

I'm pretty sure that anything I'd get would be a huge upgrade, that's for sure.

Basically it comes down to this. Would it be a good buy at 260€ if I want a...

-decent quality mic (doesn't really matter if it's on a table or in the headphones, headphones is naturally a plus but for most uses the ZM-1 is well enough when abroad, "I can live with it")

-good quality, general purpose headphones without a "real" dedicated amplifier but with the one that comes from i.e the asus xonar cards

That over the ~180€ (32 ohm) DT770's or the DT770 (80 ohm) 140-150€ and a mic that I'd put on the table.

Music is a bit more into the heavier stuff, but like said before it's still pretty much everything.

Beyerdynamic MMX300, a DT770 Premium 32-Ohm with a built in mic.

I would say just to get the DT770 Pro 80-Ohm, I know the Xonar DG will have no problem driving 80-Ohm headphones.

If you decide to get the Xonar Essence STX or ST, then get the DT770 Pro 250-ohm.

If you can use open headphones, then the DT990 Pro 250-Ohm.

post #6 of 12
Thread Starter 

Oh wait. :D

 

I mixed up with headset and headphones constantly. I even mixed them up later on. Oh well. Currently I use headphone + mic, and basically both (headphone or headset) solutions will do. Sorry for the confusion.

 

Yeah, I'll look around a bit. Sadly the on-street audio stores are expensive compared to the online alternatives, and often only want to show up the more expensive headphones meant for professional stuff... understandable, since that kind of stuff is the only thing where they can actually compete and fare better than online stores. Still, it sucks. Hard to find anything between total audiophile professional headphones or the budget headphones/headsets, save for Sennheisers.

 

Everything will be an upgrade, but buying's a bit of a guess. I just want it to be an educated guess, heh.

post #7 of 12
Thread Starter 

Okay, so I'm a bit further down in the line... obviously I haven't been rushing with this, no hurries.

 

So, I don't really want to use ZM-1 mic with headphones, so I thought that if I should have to mod it all out in case I wanted a proper headset. Somebody did make a proper boom microphone headset from DT 770's (and the mic was also detachable, a simple plug-in) but it'd require some drilling and stuff.

 

I was really intriqued by the Beyerdynamic MX 300. They look kind of good overall solution. However, I was also wondering about of how they would actually be faring considering the price. Couldn't find any "good" price for the Beyer's or the Qpad alternative, lowest possible was 259 and for that I could get something better as far as I'm concerned. Aviation-grade headset sounds cool but that's all what it does.

 

So I found the Antlion Modmic... I guess that's going to answer all my questions regarding the mic. Easy to install, and can have multiple installations. Only the tiny, small mount wouldn't be detachable. Goodbye for Zalman, I have no need for you anymore. I guess the boom mics can be had for less than 32 USD, but frankly with the USD -> € conversion taken into account and the sound quality I managed to hear, the convenience is more than enough to pay extra for.

 

Now I'm just thinking of whether if I'd go all out with Xonar ST/STX or and DT 990's (the used ST/STX cards are being sold from time to time, but people tend to only accept "collect" rather than posting it, understandably as well as unfortunately) or will I suffice with something like the 770's or something similar. DT990's look good in my eyes, though, and I've already been using open headphones. I can't really say how different the closed headphones would be, I've only used earcups in some of the workplaces I've been at, but not headphones.

 

I think with the mic being found, headphones are pretty much out of the question now.

 

About the higher impedance headphones, I've heard that the xonars or any other soundcard for that matter won't be driving them as "properly" as a dedicated amp would, but sufficiently nevertheless.

post #8 of 12
Quote:
Originally Posted by computeraudio View Post
Okay, so I'm a bit further down in the line... obviously I haven't been rushing with this, no hurries.

So, I don't really want to use ZM-1 mic with headphones, so I thought that if I should have to mod it all out in case I wanted a proper headset. Somebody did make a proper boom microphone headset from DT 770's (and the mic was also detachable, a simple plug-in) but it'd require some drilling and stuff.

I was really intriqued by the Beyerdynamic MX 300. They look kind of good overall solution. However, I was also wondering about of how they would actually be faring considering the price. Couldn't find any "good" price for the Beyer's or the Qpad alternative, lowest possible was 259 and for that I could get something better as far as I'm concerned. Aviation-grade headset sounds cool but that's all what it does.

So I found the Antlion Modmic... I guess that's going to answer all my questions regarding the mic. Easy to install, and can have multiple installations. Only the tiny, small mount wouldn't be detachable. Goodbye for Zalman, I have no need for you anymore. I guess the boom mics can be had for less than 32 USD, but frankly with the USD -> € conversion taken into account and the sound quality I managed to hear, the convenience is more than enough to pay extra for.

Now I'm just thinking of whether if I'd go all out with Xonar ST/STX or and DT 990's (the used ST/STX cards are being sold from time to time, but people tend to only accept "collect" rather than posting it, understandably as well as unfortunately) or will I suffice with something like the 770's or something similar. DT990's look good in my eyes, though, and I've already been using open headphones. I can't really say how different the closed headphones would be, I've only used earcups in some of the workplaces I've been at, but not headphones.

I think with the mic being found, headphones are pretty much out of the question now.

About the higher impedance headphones, I've heard that the Xonars or any other sound card for that matter won't be driving them as "properly" as a dedicated amp would, but sufficiently nevertheless.

My Essence STX has driven 250-Ohm and 600-Ohm headphones and the sound quality seems fine.

For an all in one package, the sound card is a good value.

An External headphone amplifier can drive headphones better then the Essence, if your will to spend the cash.

I'm sure a $200 Little Dot headphone amplifier can drive headphones better then the Essence.

but the $200 Little Dot has no DAC and can not process surround sound.

 

The Essence STX (or ST) With a DT990 would make a great combo.

 

The Asus Xonar DX & D1 are close in features to the STX & ST,

Adding an external headphone amplifier to the DX/D1 makes a great combo.

On eBay, they sell single tube headphone amplifiers for $60-$120, they can easily drive the DT990 Pro 250-ohm.

The SMSL SAP-100 solid state amp. is only $65.


Edited by PurpleAngel - 6/24/12 at 9:40am
post #9 of 12
Thread Starter 

Are you recommending the DT 990 Pros or DT 990 Premiums? The premium version has a "100€ Premium" on it (~244€ vs ~145€). Some people say there is no practical difference, some say that there is a huge difference.

 

And if I was going to get the AT2020, would you recommend the 3.5 mm version or the USB-version to go along with a xonar? Though, I reeaaaaaally doubt I'm going to buy either as of now. If I just want to do something random with a guitar (aka fun recording) one can plug it directly into the sound card anyway. Won't be nearly as good, but will suffice at my level of seriousness. Haven't had any serious stuff going on with it, even my guitar amplifier is the one that I got when I bought it... hah. Need to learn to play it for real.

 

Still thinking a bit about it, as going for DT 990 Premium + STX + ModMic is around 450€. Same with Pros is obviously 100€ less, DT770's and a Xonar DG (which I already have) with modmic would be roughly 170€, and the Beyer MMX 300 would be 269. The QPAD equilevants seem to be going for 250. As to put it in numbers.

 

The price of the soundcard still bites me a bit, but I really want it all in one package and I guess it'll fare very well in long term.

 

I'll probably either bite the dust and take it all at once, or go for the DT770s. Just need to click on it at some point... got enough time as to not stress about it. Can't spend too much time with the desktop @ summer. Sennheisers feel great but to be honest, for gaming use, I haven't had a problem with pretty much any setup I've had. This is mostly due to either me being ignorant, or then the fact that I don't play too many FPS games.

 

God, this is even trickier than trying to buy a monitor. I thought that all the fuzz about IPS, TN, Input Lags, adjustments etc. were bad. Not pointing anything at you guys, you are of a great help. Just thinking of all the discussions I've seen regarding the headphones and the mics and the soundcards and the amplifiers and... you get the drill. Oh well, that's what you get for not being like everyone and settling down with something like steelseries siberia :P


Edited by computeraudio - 6/25/12 at 9:51am
post #10 of 12
Quote:
Originally Posted by computeraudio View Post

Are you recommending the DT 990 Pros or DT 990 Premiums? The premium version has a "100€ Premium" on it (~244€ vs ~145€). Some people say there is no practical difference, some say that there is a huge difference.

 

And if I was going to get the AT2020, would you recommend the 3.5 mm version or the USB-version to go along with a Xonar? Though, I reeaaaaaally doubt I'm going to buy either as of now. If I just want to do something random with a guitar (aka fun recording) one can plug it directly into the sound card anyway. Won't be nearly as good, but will suffice at my level of seriousness. Haven't had any serious stuff going on with it, even my guitar amplifier is the one that I got when I bought it... hah. Need to learn to play it for real.

 

Still thinking a bit about it, as going for DT 990 Premium + STX + ModMic is around 450€. Same with Pros is obviously 100€ less, DT770's and a Xonar DG (which I already have) with modmic would be roughly 170€, and the Beyer MMX 300 would be 269. The QPAD equilevants seem to be going for 250. As to put it in numbers.

 

The price of the sound card still bites me a bit, but I really want it all in one package and I guess it'll fare very well in long term.

 

I'll probably either bite the dust and take it all at once, or go for the DT770s. Just need to click on it at some point... got enough time as to not stress about it. Can't spend too much time with the desktop @ summer. Sennheisers feel great but to be honest, for gaming use, I haven't had a problem with pretty much any setup I've had. This is mostly due to either me being ignorant, or then the fact that I don't play too many FPS games.

 

God, this is even trickier than trying to buy a monitor. I thought that all the fuzz about IPS, TN, Input Lags, adjustments etc. were bad. Not pointing anything at you guys, you are of a great help. Just thinking of all the discussions I've seen regarding the headphones and the mics and the soundcards and the amplifiers and... you get the drill. Oh well, that's what you get for not being like everyone and settling down with something like steelseries siberia :P

DT990 Pro 250-ohm should be fine.

Mic wise, get something with the 3.5mm, plugs straight into the sound card.

So Essence STX with DT990 Pro 250-Ohm, should keep "happy" for a long time.

post #11 of 12
Quote:
Originally Posted by deathzero34 View Post

have you considered the PC360 by Sennheiser?

 

I own a pair myself and they are really well suited for gaming. Extremely comfortable, the microphone is sturdy, ( I always have fear on those bendy straw microphone) the microphone also have the simplest mute system. They are opened so you can actually hear if someone is calling you and also serve has a ventilation allowing you to wear them for longer duration. The volume control is on the right ear and is a simple rotating knob. The headphone is quite sturdy to. I have dropped it from table height, I also pulled in the cord by mistake and they are still working perfectly.

 

Coupled with an ASUS xonar STX or ST could make you quite a set up.


No, they are terrible in musicality compared to MMX 300. I have tested all of them.

post #12 of 12
Thread Starter 

I've been working recently and doing some other stuff. Haven't had time to do this, and I'm away from the desktop for around a month or so.

 

I got the Xonar Xense bundle in my eye. As an used pair. They're selling for <200€, though I really believe I could push it lower.

 

It seems that the Xonar has the same Headphone Amplifier as the STX does and doesn't lose much in audio quality. While I'm only interested in the sound card, the PC 350 (xense edition) would obviously come with it; I doubt he'd even try to sell them without, or if he did the discount on it would be too small to matter. The sound card would also include 7.1 possibility, although that is mostly worthless to me. The card would be PCI-E as well, which has obvious benefits in the long term.

 

I'm asking this because the guy selling it is nearby and buying it used like that would be much less hassle-free than what a normal used buy would be.

 

I'm still wondering about it since the asking price is still considerably higher than the STX (new) now, and I doubt I'd do much with the PC-350's - but if he's willing to drop on the price or do some adjustments, I'd like to know how feasible that would be. I'd still be getting the DT 990's, but I'm wondering how good of a sound card the xense really is?

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