I'm currently using the onboard sound of my motherboard (ASRock Z77 Extreme4) with a cheap pair of Sennheiser HD201s. I'm keen to up the audio quality, as well as get a microphone, so I'm looking at some new audio equipment.
First off, I'm considering a soundcard - the Asus Xonar DGX. This is mainly for Dolby Headphone, but it'd be nice if it upped the audio quality a little. Are there any problems with this card or Dolby Headphone at this level of equipment? Will it be significantly better than onboard?
Second, there's the headphones themselves. I live in Australia so things are a little pricier and some of the more obscure brands may not be available. My budget is about $70-$120. These will be used pretty much purely for gaming with a few movies on the side. I know "headsets" are usually pretty poor quality compared to what you'd get otherwise for the price, but I'm willing to pay extra for the convenience of an attached microphone. Currently considering the Corsair 1300 - would this be a significant increase in quality over my HD201s? Is the bass particularly powerful? I'm no audiophile, but I'd like some bass a bit more powerful than what I have in my current headphones.
If I can get significantly better with audiophile headphones though, then I'm fine with those and a Zalman clipon mic (maybe a modmic later if the Zalmans are really as awful as people say). I'm not a competitive player, so all I'm really interested in is decent audio quality and some nice, rumbly bass.
Please let me know any suggestions about the gear I'm considering - if you know anything around the price of the Corsairs that absolutely smashes them, let me know. I am pretty keen on getting some powerful sounding bass, not over-the-top, but better than what I'm currently using. Also, I really don't like on-ear headphones - something like my current set that completely enclose the ear would be nice.
Edited by Uncle Chop Chop - 10/16/12 at 4:54am