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Need some Headphone help, suggestions please.

post #1 of 13
Thread Starter 

I first posted in the Mad Lust Envy's Headphone Gaming Guide, then read my private message and saw i'm suppose to post here first :) so here we go.

 

Hi Guys

First Off, great guide, and lots of good posts, but I ended up skipping several due to the length, but anyway.  I'm a gamer looking for my next upgrade.  Currently i'm running the Logitech G930 wireless headphones which were pretty good the first year but after that issues started, mainly random disconnects and re-connects, also i'm running stock sound on my Asus M5A99X Evo.  For the past month I had my heart set on the Astro A40 with mixamp... until i realized i don't have a soundcard with DDL (dolby digital live).  So i started looking elsewhere and realized my budget was going to go out the window.  I originally planned on just spending the 250/260 dollars on the a40s but now i have to pay 100/150 for a good sound card.  So i started looking around and have come to the decision of getting the ASUS XONAR ESSENCE STX/90 and the Audio-Technica ATH-AD700X which is going to total me about 350 dollars now, 100 more than i wanted.  However i don't mind spending the extra 100 on the setup if its worth it, i have read so many reviews on the astro a40's vs true headphones and buying a mod mic.  I like to play competitive but also play for fun.  The biggest difference i see is bass, mic/no mic/ and how good the mids/surround sound is.  

 

I'm kind of lost as what to get, I also read that the regular xonar dx i think its called, is all you need but i see a lot of bad reviews, specially on newegg for that card and it doesn't have DDL, but if i'm not mistaken the DDL is really just for the astro a40's.  In the end i'm looking for a sound card and great headphones for gaming the most like FPS, MMORPG's, music second.  I don't care if it has a mic I can buy a mod mic since i hear nothing but great things about them.  So yea, sorry for the wall of text but i really really really appreciate your guys's input on the matter. 

 

So to sum it up, Gaming setup (sound card / Headphones) with or without mic.  350 bucks or less unless its a hair over.

 

-Dave


Edited by Onyxius - 9/25/13 at 8:26pm
post #2 of 13

Save a few dollars.

Get tha Asus Xonar DG (PCI) sound card, $27 and Amazon has a $10 mail in rebate this month.

The DG's basic headphone amplifier can easily drive the 48-Ohm AD700X headphones ($164).

Also check out the (50-Ohm) Sennheiser HD558 headphones, $131.26 on Amazon

 

P.S. the Xonar DX does come with DDL (Dobly Digital Live), but you really have no need for a sound card with DDL.

The Xonar DG should at least be the equal for the Astro mix-amp for Dolby Headphone 5.1 Surround sound.

The DG has the computer's main CPU to help with processing, the Astro Mix-amp does not.

post #3 of 13
Thread Starter 

So is there no real difference that i would notice between the Xonar DG and the Xonar Essence stx for the price?  Also i'm definitely up for a pair of Sennheiser HD558 as i used to own the 595's several years back but thought getting the g930 was a better move, then gave my mom the 595's, none the less she is in love with them and will take them to her grave lol.  So how are the 595's compared the 558's?  I don't think i can go wrong with the 558's as so many people love them here as well, i guess my biggest concern is spending 30 dollars on a sound card vs what I am used to, and spending 100.  but again i haven't purchased a sound card in over 5 years.

 

Side question i think i know the answer too, the Blue Yeti Microphone, it doesn't use the sound card does it, i mean doesn't it have its own stuff inside?  I am wondering if upgrading the sound card will maybe help the blue yeti with the horrendous background noise i get in my office.


Edited by Onyxius - 9/26/13 at 8:41am
post #4 of 13
Quote:
Originally Posted by Onyxius View Post
 

So is there no real difference that i would notice between the Xonar DG and the Xonar Essence stx for the price?  Also i'm definitely up for a pair of Sennheiser HD558 as i used to own the 595's several years back but thought getting the g930 was a better move, then gave my mom the 595's, none the less she is in love with them and will take them to her grave lol.  So how are the 595's compared the 558's?  I don't think i can go wrong with the 558's as so many people love them here as well, i guess my biggest concern is spending 30 dollars on a sound card vs what i' mused to and spending 100.  but again i haven't purchased a sound card in over 5 years.

 

Side question i think i know the answer too, the Blue Yeti Microphone, it doesn't use the sound card does it, i mean doesn't it have its own stuff inside?  I am wondering if upgrading the sound card will maybe help the blue yeti with the horrendous background noise i get in my office.

You did say you were over your budget, the STX would provide better audio quality, STX is 7.1 (DG only 5.1),

The DG's basic amp can drive both the AD700X and HD558.

I've never listened to the HD595, but the HD558 does use the same driver as the HD598 (but they have different cup designs).

There is also the Creative Sound Blaster Z (SB1500) sound card, $95, comes with it's own microphone.

The Z has a better DAC chip (CS4398) then the DG (CS4245).

 

The Blue Yeti microphone is USB, have no idea about the background noise problem.

post #5 of 13
Thread Starter 

yea, I don't want to go over 350 by to much.  So I may just go with the 558's and the Xonar essence stx.  Those 2 from Amazon puts me at 301 dollars, i'm just not sure how the 558's are for gaming and being able to hear the mids (footsteps).

 

 


Edited by Onyxius - 9/26/13 at 9:11am
post #6 of 13
Quote:
Originally Posted by Onyxius View Post
 

Yea, I don't want to go over 350 by to much.  So I may just go with the 558's and the Xonar Essence stx.  Those 2 from Amazon puts me at 301 dollars, i'm just not sure how the 558's are for gaming and being able to hear the mids (footsteps).

One other option is to get a Xonar DX or D1 (used $60) and a Schiit Magni external headphone amplifier, $99.

The Xonar DX, D1 & STX use the same CMI8788 audio processor.

The Schiit Magni has a really low output impedance :) like under 1-Ohm and can be use with more then just computers and you get a volume knob right at your finger tips.

post #7 of 13
Thread Starter 

hmm interesting, well i have some things to think about i suppose, i really hoped to get more options from other people as well but, oh well.  Thanks for the info and If I have any other questions ill reply back.

post #8 of 13
Quote:
Originally Posted by Onyxius View Post
 

hmm interesting, well i have some things to think about i suppose, i really hoped to get more options from other people as well but, oh well.  Thanks for the info and If I have any other questions ill reply back.

You can hope for all the options you like, but if I'm the only one on Head-Fi answering your questions,

well.....I guess your stuck with me.:D

post #9 of 13
Thread Starter 

hehe i'm sure i cant go wrong, especially from what i'm coming from.  Like i said i used to own the 595's i just hope the 558's are as good :) 

post #10 of 13
Quote:
Originally Posted by Onyxius View Post
 

hehe i'm sure i cant go wrong, especially from what i'm coming from.  Like i said i used to own the 595's i just hope the 558's are as good :) 

You might consider removing the black rubber tape from inside the cups of the HD558, open them up.

post #11 of 13
Thread Starter 

I thought about that, and I probably will, is the sound difference that much better? :)

post #12 of 13
Quote:
Originally Posted by Onyxius View Post
 

I thought about that, and I probably will, is the sound difference that much better? :)

Hard for me to remember, I removed the Black rubber tape a few weeks after I bought them which was like two years ago.

post #13 of 13
Thread Starter 

I guess ill find out soon enough, i may listen to them for a couple of days to get comfy with them, then try the tape mod and see if I like it better :).

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