Head-Fi.org › Forums › Equipment Forums › Computer Audio › Seeking advice for optimal setup
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:

Seeking advice for optimal setup

post #1 of 4
Thread Starter 

Hey guys, I'm brand new to the forums so I apologize if a lot of the questions I have asked have been answered already. If so please just point me to the correct thread :)

 

I am a novice audiophile, and I am looking for the best setup possible for a PC / PS3 & iPod /iPad being the primary sources. 

 

90% of the time I use headphones, I am looking at getting some nice speakers later on. But currently I am using a pair of AKG Q701 & K550 connected to a Behringer MINIAMP AMP800 (4 channel headphone amp) which is connected to my X-FI titanium sound card on my PC. The main reason I went with the 4 channel amp originally is because it has 2 inputs and 4 out. Allowing me to have both pairs & sources connected without having to purchase a receiver or auxiliary source selector.

 

I would like to upgrade my system to a USB DAC / Tube Amp combo. Ultimately down the road when I purchase nice speakers I would like to be able to switch between sources, headphones and speakers with relative ease and minimal loss of fidelity. (Separate Amps for speakers and headphones)

 

I haven't really set myself a budget yet, but I would like to try and keep everything in or under the $1000 realm if possible. I am willing to expand if necessary / worth it.

 

I have been looking at Schiit Bifrost / Valhalla combo. My buddy has it with the K702 and I LOVE the sound of it. But I feel i'll be pretty limited on sources and outputs. 

 

I have also looked into using a Marantz NA7004 Network Audio player / USB DAC then running it to the Schiit Valhalla as an alternative. 

 

Do you all have any suggestions? I would like to avoid a receiver if possible but I'm open to all suggestions and criticism! Any and all help is appreciated!

 

Thanks!

post #2 of 4
Quote:
Originally Posted by Asyde View Post
Hey guys, I'm brand new to the forums so I apologize if a lot of the questions I have asked have been answered already. If so please just point me to the correct thread :)

I am a novice audiophile, and I am looking for the best setup possible for a PC / PS3 & iPod /iPad being the primary sources. 

90% of the time I use headphones, I am looking at getting some nice speakers later on. But currently I am using a pair of AKG Q701 & K550 connected to a Behringer MINIAMP AMP800 (4 channel headphone amp) which is connected to my X-FI Titanium sound card on my PC. The main reason I went with the 4 channel amp originally is because it has 2 inputs and 4 out. Allowing me to have both pairs & sources connected without having to purchase a receiver or auxiliary source selector.

I would like to upgrade my system to a USB DAC / Tube Amp combo. Ultimately down the road when I purchase nice speakers I would like to be able to switch between sources, headphones and speakers with relative ease and minimal loss of fidelity. (Separate Amps for speakers and headphones)

I haven't really set myself a budget yet, but I would like to try and keep everything in or under the $1000 realm if possible. I am willing to expand if necessary / worth it.

I have been looking at Schiit Bifrost / Valhalla combo. My buddy has it with the K702 and I LOVE the sound of it. But I feel i'll be pretty limited on sources and outputs. 

I have also looked into using a Marantz NA7004 Network Audio player / USB DAC then running it to the Schiit Valhalla as an alternative. 

Do you all have any suggestions? I would like to avoid a receiver if possible but I'm open to all suggestions and criticism! Any and all help is appreciated!

Is the PC for music? movies? gaming?

Upgrade to the Ti-HD (Titanium HD) sound card.

Swan or Audioengine speakers, connected to the RCA jacks on the Ti-HD

NFB-12.1 DAC connected to the Ti-HD with S/PDIF, connect the headphones to the NFB-12.1

Astro Mix-amp for connecting headphones to the PS3.

Fiio E11 for the iPod.

post #3 of 4
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by PurpleAngel View Post

Is the PC for music? movies? gaming?

Upgrade to the Ti-HD (Titanium HD) sound card.

Swan or Audioengine speakers, connected to the RCA jacks on the Ti-HD

NFB-12.1 DAC connected to the Ti-HD with S/PDIF, connect the headphones to the NFB-12.1

Astro Mix-amp for connecting headphones to the PS3.

Fiio E11 for the iPod.

Thanks for the input PurpleAngel,

 

For audio my PC is mostly for Music and Gaming. Occasional Music Production and Movies.

 

I've heard a lot of good reviews on the NFB-12.1 but I really enjoy tube sound. So preferably that's the amp direction I want to go. Are there any similar options with tubes?

 

With the sound card directly connected to both the headphone amp and the speaker amp, what would be the easiest way to choose my output? Would I have to go through software every time? Having a desktop source / output selector is pretty handy. 

 

As for the PS3, Could I connect that to my DAC through optical? I use my PS3 on my PC monitor

 

Thanks again for the help.

post #4 of 4
Quote:
Originally Posted by Asyde View Post

For audio my PC is mostly for Music and Gaming. Occasional Music Production and Movies.

I've heard a lot of good reviews on the NFB-12.1 but I really enjoy tube sound. So preferably that's the amp direction I want to go. Are there any similar options with tubes?

With the sound card directly connected to both the headphone amp and the speaker amp, what would be the easiest way to choose my output? Would I have to go through software every time? Having a desktop source / output selector is pretty handy. 

As for the PS3, Could I connect that to my DAC through optical? I use my PS3 on my PC monitor

With a tube amplifer, chances are you are also going to need a separate DAC (SMSL SD-1955 DAC?) also.

When switching between headphones and speakers, chances are you will need to select in the Creative control panel anyway.

Something needs to inform the Creative sound card so it can correctly process for headphone or speakers.

You could connect the PS3 to the external DAC, but you would only get 2-channel audio, not 5.1 surround sound.

New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:
  Return Home
  Back to Forum: Computer Audio
Head-Fi.org › Forums › Equipment Forums › Computer Audio › Seeking advice for optimal setup