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AKG K550 AMP + DAC or just get an AMP?

post #1 of 10
Thread Starter 

I have a Creative Sound Blaster X-Fi XtremeGamer currently. I was looking at a fiio E10 but was curious if I really need to buy a DAC if i have a decent sound card already?

 

Any suggestions? 

 

Yes, I am on a budget of around 75$ 


Edited by pclov3r - 2/9/13 at 7:52am
post #2 of 10

As the K550 really don't need amping help from power perspective, I'd probably use that money on getting a better source.

post #3 of 10
Thread Starter 

Any comments on the Xonar DX? 

post #4 of 10
Quote:
Originally Posted by pclov3r View Post

Any comments on the Xonar DX? 

You would only buy the Xonar DX if you were planning on using it with an external headphone amplifier.

The AKG K550 is fairly easy to drive.....but.

As The K550 is only 32-Ohms, you would want to only use the K550 with a headphone amplifier that has a very low impedance (Ohm).

Technically, you would want a headphone amplifier with an impedance of (4-Ohms or less)

(the line-out/headphone jacks on the XtremeGamer and Xonar DX have a high impedance).

The PAV2V external headphone amplifier ($70) could be used between the XtremeGamer and the K550.

(I believe the PAV2V has a low headphone output impedance)

post #5 of 10
Thread Starter 

Do you think the Xonar DX would be a DAC upgrade form the Extreme Gamer? Seems like the DX  has a 117 dB SNR where as the Gamer has 109 dB SNR.

 

Altho, People say the Gamer has a terrible op-amp 


Edited by pclov3r - 2/10/13 at 8:41am
post #6 of 10
Quote:
Originally Posted by pclov3r View Post

Do you think the Xonar DX would be a DAC upgrade form the Extreme Gamer? Seems like the DX  has a 117 dB SNR where as the Gamer has 109 dB SNR.

 

Altho, People say the Gamer has a terrible op-amp 

I'm fairly sure the Xonar DX's DAC chip (CS4398) is better then the DAC chip in the XtremeGamer.

post #7 of 10

Well anything with a SNR like that is going to sound the same - really good. So I wouldn't waste your money. 

post #8 of 10
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Satellite_6 View Post

Well anything with a SNR like that is going to sound the same - really good. So I wouldn't waste your money. 

But, people say the Extreme Gamer has a terrible OP-AMP so that would affect sound qulauty.

 

I can get a manufacturer referb for like 50$

post #9 of 10

Grab the Xonar DX if you are unhappy with your current source.

 

To note, a difference in SNR of 109 dB to 117 dB is quite a bit as dB is a log scale, not linear....

The X-Gamer is pretty dated now, and to be fair it does not have a terrible opamp, just a generic one which pretty much all cards for that period

do.

Go with the newer card...if you need one.


Edited by ROBSCIX - 2/10/13 at 1:30pm
post #10 of 10

The NJM4556 is an extremely excellent opamp! Also there is no audible difference between a 109 dB and 117 dB ratio with or without 24 bit files. 

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