Head-Fi.org › Forums › Equipment Forums › Headphone Amps (full-size) › Amp/DAC Recommendation for: HE-500, HD 650, and Beyer DT 880 600Ohm
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:

Amp/DAC Recommendation for: HE-500, HD 650, and Beyer DT 880 600Ohm

post #1 of 9
Thread Starter 

Long time lurker; first post. biggrin.gif

 

I'm looking for a multi-use amp to drive my entire range of cans, the HE-500, HD 650, and Beyer DT 880 600Ohm.  I'm currently using a Xonar Essence STX with both the built in amp and also as a DAC connected via RCA output to a slightly modded Bravo Audio V2.  While this gear can sound decent with the Senn's and Beyer, both amps lack the punch and control to power the HE-500.  I'm looking for an upgrade both in power and sonic performance and would like to have an external DAC + amp combo unit with the following:

  • Digital and USB input
  • Analog RCA input and output; I'd like to be able to use the device as an all-in-one, a standalone DAC, and as just an amp
  • Enough power to drive the orthos
  • Singled ended output

 

I am open to a separate component DAC and amp setup but would like to keep the cost < $700.  Thanks!

 

- Aux

post #2 of 9
Thread Starter 
Welp, I did a little searching myself and came up with:

Audio GD Compass 2 w/ either the ES9018 or WM8741 DAC: ~$500 to $555
Schiit Bitfrost + Asgard / Lyr: ~$700 to $900

How do these compare? Any other options in the price range?
post #3 of 9

The lyr and bifrost is the best combo to me by far. You can get them cheaper if you are willing to go used here. If you need to spend less money, consider swapping out the bifrost for an odac. That will save you $100-200 depending whether you want usb or not. If you go with the bifrost get the non usb version. It's cheaper and the optical sounds better. wink.gif

 

gL!!

post #4 of 9

As I'm assuming whatever DAC/Amp that works well with the HE-400 will also for the HE-500, so try asking your question on this thread.

http://www.head-fi.org/t/604583/hifiman-he-400-review

post #5 of 9
Quote:
Originally Posted by PurpleAngel View Post

As I'm assuming whatever DAC/Amp that works well with the HE-400 will also for the HE-500, so try asking your question on this thread.

http://www.head-fi.org/t/604583/hifiman-he-400-review

I'll respectfully disagree with your assessment there.  The HE-500 are a picky headphone amp pair of headphones, whereas the HE-400 are not.

post #6 of 9
Quote:
Originally Posted by vc1187 View Post

I'll respectfully disagree with your assessment there.  The HE-500 are a picky headphone amp pair of headphones, whereas the HE-400 are not.

Then I guess these two threads are better places to ask questions about amplifying the HE-500.

http://www.head-fi.org/t/549413/hifiman-introduces-new-he-500-planar-magnetic-headphones

http://www.head-fi.org/t/551345/hifiman-he-500-he-as-in-high-end-please-post-your-impressions-loan-pair-for-uk-pg-28

post #7 of 9
Quote:

Now I'm in agreement smily_headphones1.gif

post #8 of 9
Thread Starter 

I've read through a lot of the forum posts regarding the Lyr.  While I think the amp will perform admirably, there seems to be a mixed consensus on whether it is worth the additional cash over the excellent Asgard.  Mike at Headphonia seems to enjoy the sound signature of the Asgard over the Lyr and even mentions that it pairs well with the HE-500: http://www.headfonia.com/triple-schiit-asgaard-valhalla-and-lyr/   Thoughts?

 

Regarding the Compass 2, there is a thread regarding the NFB-11.32 device that uses the same DAC:  http://www.head-fi.org/t/624517/audio-gd-nfb-11-32-delivery-impression-thread

Given that the Compass 2 uses the same DAC and a slightly more powerful amp than the NFB-11.32 which receives good reviews, is the Bitfrost / Asgard or Bitfrost / Lyr combo worth the extra $200 to $400 over the Compass 2?

post #9 of 9

i have the Nuforce Icon HD as an Amp/DAC for my HD650... but I bought this back in 2010.  Not sure if there are better combos now.

New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:
  Return Home
  Back to Forum: Headphone Amps (full-size)
Head-Fi.org › Forums › Equipment Forums › Headphone Amps (full-size) › Amp/DAC Recommendation for: HE-500, HD 650, and Beyer DT 880 600Ohm