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Soundcard vs Amp - which one should come first?

post #1 of 6
Thread Starter 

Hi guys I have a pair of ATH-M50's that I use for my computer, I completely retired my lovely Logitech speakers I've had since 2005. I was gonna buy an Fiio E6 for my M50's but then I remembered that it's a PORTABLE AMP and it needs to be charged, that is simply an inconvenience as I'm just looking to get a bit more out of my M50's through my computer and having them plugged up in the Fiio E6 all day would just kill the battery.  So I then realized perhaps I could just purchase an AMP that is meant to be used always and has its own power source. But then I realized, maybe since I'm using these headphones on my computer perhaps a sound card should be first and may actually be all I need.

 

What do you guys think? Right now I'm using my stock sound from my ASUS motherboard I bought last year, by no means is it high tech though. Should one expect a significant difference in their music when using high quality headphones from their computer once a soundcard is installed? Would a sound card perhaps make my M50's more bassy, louder, clearer? If so is there any reputable brands out there? I have a budget and would like to spend $50 or less but can spend a bit more, $75 for something exceptional. But if an AMP would create a bigger difference then I will go that route.

post #2 of 6

It sounds like something like the FiiO E07K would be a good match for you. It's just slightly above your budget, but it's a DAC and a headphone amp. It will bypass the sound card in your computer. It's rechargeable and has a battery, but when it's connected to your computer it will run off of USB power forever as long as your computer is plugged in.

 

The M50's sound good without an amp, but most people seem to agree they are even better amped.

 

I don't know the details of your computer, but it's likely the E07K would provide a considerable improvement over the on-board sound.

 

Of course, there are plenty of other options besides the E07K, but it's one product you may want to consider...

 

http://www.fiio.com.cn/products/index.aspx?MenuID=105026002

post #3 of 6
Thread Starter 

Thank you greatly for your reply and suggestion. Indeed, I will scope out the E07K and try to purchase it. Thank you sir.
 

post #4 of 6

I second the E07k recommendation, for the price you are getting a decent DAC and an amp that's portable and versatile.

post #5 of 6
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ziion View Post

Thank you greatly for your reply and suggestion. Indeed, I will scope out the E07K and try to purchase it. Thank you sir.
 

Save a few dollars, just get the Asus Xonar DG ($27) or DGX ($42) sound card.

Can't see spending anymore for ATH-M50 headphones.

post #6 of 6
Quote:
Originally Posted by PurpleAngel View Post

Save a few dollars, just get the Asus Xonar DG ($27) or DGX ($42) sound card.

Can't see spending anymore for ATH-M50 headphones.


+1

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