- 17,014 Posts. Joined 5/2004
- Location: Mid Johor, Malaysia.
- Select All Posts By This User
Recent Images In This Thread
- productdigiZoid ZO2 Personal hi-fi experiencetagged by dbsaffor, 9/10/13
- productEtymotic Research ER4S MicroPro Reference Earphonestagged by dbsaffor, 9/10/13
- productFiiO E12 Mont Blanctagged by dbsaffor, 9/10/13
- productFiiO E17tagged by dbsaffor, 9/10/13
- productHeadRoom Total BitHead Headphone Amp / DACtagged by dbsaffor, 9/10/13
- productIbasso D-Zerotagged by dbsaffor, 9/10/13
- productIbasso T3tagged by dbsaffor, 9/10/13
- productIbasso T5tagged by dbsaffor, 9/10/13
- productJDS Labs c421 Headphone Amplifiertagged by dbsaffor, 9/10/13
- productJDS Labs C5 Headphone Amplifiertagged by dbsaffor, 9/10/13More
- productJDS Labs Objective2 Assembled PCBtagged by dbsaffor, 9/10/13
- productLear FSM-2 V2 Portable Headphone Amplifertagged by dbsaffor, 9/10/13
- productLeckerton Audio uha 4 slimline portable amptagged by dbsaffor, 9/10/13
- productMeier Audio Stepdancetagged by dbsaffor, 9/10/13
- productSanDisk Sansa Fuze V2tagged by dbsaffor, 9/10/13
- productShure SE530 Sound Isolating Earphonestagged by dbsaffor, 9/10/13
Related Forum Threads
- Would like some advice on choosing a portable amp. + DAC [single unit] Last post on 6/14/13 at 8:51am in Portable Headphone Amps
- Giant List of sub-$200 portable DACs w/ their chips & price Last post on 3/6/16 at 2:18pm in Dedicated Source Components
- Best $100 amp? Last post on 9/18/13 at 7:34pm in Portable Headphone Amps
- [Impression] FiiO X3 – High Fi, Low Price. Last post on 4/13/15 at 10:41am in Portable Source Gear
- Ultra-portable Amps Last post on 8/26/12 at 2:57pm in Portable Headphone Amps
Head-Fi Buying Guide (Portable Amps, DACs, & DAPs)
Last edited: 12/10/15
- Head-Fi Buying Guide (Portable Amps, DACs, & DAPs) (page 2)Last edited: 12/22/15
Alright, these are the most confusing set of cans I've ever owned. Why are they so cheap? It doesn't make any sense. Right out of the gate, these are the most comfortable set of headphones...
These are easily my favorite headphones I own. My review will be assuming you have Shure 1540 pads, but I'll go over some other options as well. Lets get the big negative out of the way now....
AK Audio Super Dolphin 6BASticking a Dolphin in your ears! DisclaimerThe Super Dolphin 6BA is a loaner unit provided in exchange for my honest and unbiased opinion. I have tried my best to...
This is an excellent pair of headphones, sound is very clear, and the looks are impressive. I am disappointed with the padding, hurts to wear in less then 15 minutes. Pads can be replaced though....
I've had mine for almost 5 years, still breathing and still sounds great! I've had mine short circuit for two times because and fixed it, still sounds the same. So far this is the best for me and I...
- Head-Fi Buying Guide (Portable Amps, DACs, & DAPs) (page 2)
The Sub-$200 Portable Amps Shootout – 13 (+11) amps compared - Page 7
Gear mentioned in this thread:
Edit: I was tired and typed the wrong thing. Edit in bold. Sorry for the confusion.
Edited by Evshrug - 9/9/12 at 7:17am
I think one of the challenges for new amp buyers is the difference between high current, high voltage & high gain. I know it confuses me! All I know is that low-impedance headphones tend to hiss and sound bad if the amp's gain is too high - but I really don't know why - I'm guessing it is because gain is actually a voltage increase? And if the amp gain is too high for a low-impedance 'phone, then you can overdrive the 'phone (supply too much voltage) - is that correct?
Unlike current, you can control the voltage using the volume knob. With low impedance headphone, the problems are two folds: first, if the gain on the amp is too high, a slight turn on volume knob can make the headphone too loud. Since many volume knob also have imbalance issue on very low position, you will also get imbalance issue as well. That's the first sign your amp's gain is too high for your headphone. Often, it is also a sign your headphone doesn't need any voltage gain at all. In cases like this, digital volume control (which doesn't suffer from imbalanced) and zero voltage gain are preferred, because it is really the current you are interested at this point. The second issue is, high gain brings higher noise level, which comes in the form of hiss. That can be easily picked up by a low impedance, high sensitivity headphone, like custom IEM.
Edited by ClieOS - 9/9/12 at 9:49am
Wow, sounds complicated, I have no idea what to get now. :/
When I get it, what do I do with the gain settings and whatever? I'm confused about the fiddling with the settings and stuff also and how turning up the gain causes distortion and whatever. The ibasso t3 has +10 db gain,Maximum Output power:120mW+120mW, Signal to Noise Ratio:-98dB. What does that mean? This amp buying buisness is so confusing lol.
Edited by clairyvic - 9/9/12 at 12:04pm
What would you guys say about the Fiio E11 vs the Audinst AMP-HP? I know the Fiio E11 is half the price, but considering it's amp is "better" than the E17's, and my options are an E11 or an Audinst (or some thing comparable to the Audinst), I figured I'd ask anyways.
The e11's amp is better then the e17, well I guess that just leaves the choice between the t3 and e11. What's frusterating is that is says the MD's require at least 100 mw per channel for best effect, but I can't find how much mw per channel each of these amps have on the internet. :/
Don't know what a dac does. The EQ i'm not really interested in. I'm not sure what impedance means or a lot of this stuff means or else I would just look at the stats myself which is why i'm asking you guys.
But this headphone has 50 olms impedance, I don't know if that's a lot or a little. I guess I want minimal hissing because a lot of my music has a lot of atmospheric silence and hissing tends to bother me. So for power/lack of hissing what would be the best choice for a 50 olm headphone between the e11, e17, and t3? I don't really care about the money difference. For the sake of conversation lets just pretend they where all the same price, so even if one is just a little bit better despite the price difference I would want to get it.
Ok, going back to this post I am quoting... The reason we know (or are learning) what the stats mean is that we want to match an amp to our headphone. The whole voltage/current requirement isn't that difficult to wrap your head around.
A good amp for a low impedance headphone (measured in Ohms) doesn't have much output impedance (so it can supply plenty of current). Meanwhile, a good amp for a high impedance headphone will need more and more voltage as the impedance goes up, and it will probably have enough current once you've got enough voltage. Basically, my understanding is that if you start with an amp that has a very low output impedance, and enough voltage to drive your headphone to acceptable volume decibel levels (preferably without turning the amp up to max), you have a good amp for your headphone.
If all that is still a mystery to you, or you can't find manufacturer listed specs for output ohms and voltage, then consider that ClieOS has found 19 options and measured them for you, and reviewed their sound character too. If you STILL can't decide what has priority for you, then just get the all-around very good Objective2 amp, and consider that part of your headphone audio DONE.
By amp section alone, I won't say E11 is better than E17. It is more like 'different'.
- The Sub-$200 Portable Amps Shootout – 13 (+11) amps compared
Gear mentioned in this thread:
- › Cayin i5 Lossless Android DAP with AKM4490 DAC supporting 32/384... 37 seconds ago
- › Sennheiser HD650 Impressions Thread 45 seconds ago
- › Rate The Last Movie You Watched 59 seconds ago
- › Focal Utopia (& a little Elear) impressions and discussion 2 minutes ago
- › 2016 CanJam @ RMAF, October 7-9, 2016: The Exhibitor List! 2 minutes ago
- › Introducing the new Continental V5 portable tube amp 3 minutes ago
- › ZMF Omni - Upcoming Semi Open Flagship 4 minutes ago
- › Hidizs AP60 4 minutes ago
- › EarSonics Velvet universal custom in ear monitor with three sound... 8 minutes ago
- › ZMF Omni Bocote Wood Headphone in excellent/mint condition with extras 9 minutes ago
- › Philips SHP9500 by reikoshea
- › Fostex T50RP MK3 Professional Studio Headphones, Semi-Open by reikoshea
- › Super Dolphin 6BA by RedJohn456
- › HE-5LE by audiophilehe400
- › Logitech X-540 5.1 Surround Sound Speaker System with Subwoofer by artofmanliness
- › Massdrop x HIFIMAN HE350 by reikoshea
- › Hifime Sabre 9018 USB DAC by Rish732
- › Beyerdynamic DT 770 PRO Closed Studio Headphones - 250 Ohms by Rish732
- › FiiO A1 Micro Headphone Amplifier by chef8489
- › Over Ear Headphones，Mixcder ShareMe Pro Bluetooth 4.1 Stereo HiFi... by B9Scrambler
- › Flawless Album Suggestions
- › The Audiophile Scene in a Third World Country...
- › Mad Lust Envy's Headphone Gaming Guide,...
- › Mad Lust Envy's Headphone Gaming Guide,...
- › Mad Lust Envy's Headphone Gaming Guide:...
- › Chord Mojo FAQ
- › Head-Fi Logo Gear
- › All about iPod Touch 6G as digital transport
- › List of major HiFiMan HE1000 reviews,...
- › Can I change my user name? Can I delete my...