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My amp died...need suggestions, $100-200 budget!

post #1 of 32
Thread Starter 

Here's the lowdown, my Dayton DTA100-a died a couple days ago. It was the driving force for my PC's 2.1 audio solution for almost 2 years. I have $100-200 max to find a solution. I need your help.

 

I have a pair of Pioneer SP-BS21's that have been amazing, and I plan to keep using and enjoying them: http://www.amazon.com/Pioneer-SP-BS21-LR-80-Watts-2-Way-Speakers/dp/B004MEWZE4

 

I have a Dayton Sub-100: http://www.parts-express.com/pe/showdetl.cfm?partnumber=300-633.

I was using hi-level from the DTA to the sub as I didn't want to try the sub's hi crossover for full-range speakers nor necessarily always have the sub going. It has a 275hz 12db for the RCA outputs. Sometimes I like to tune my Pioneers for full range, cut the lowest bass down and just use them..keeps the wife happy and the neighbors from calling me in (again...), link: http://www.parts-express.com/pdf/300-633m.pdf. I also plan to keep this, as it's solid for my needs aside from the pass-thru crossover BS.

 

I have a FiiO E9 HP: http://www.amazon.com/Fiio-E9-Desktop-Headphone-Amplifier/dp/B004M172FY/ref=sr_1_1?s=electronics&ie=UTF8&qid=1382814801&sr=1-1&keywords=FiiO+E9, that I've used for a long time now, it's been a very good unit, very dependable, cool-running and plenty of power for my D2000, HARX700's, XB500's and variety of earbuds, most notably my iron buds.

 

My source is my analogue output on my Auzentech X-Fi Forte 7.1 PCI-e from my PC, all stock on the opamps. I've owned this card since 2009 and honestly it's been a champ, the drivers are solid for Windows 7 and 8 and 8.1 for me thus far...hoping I'll have success in Ubuntu 13.10 soon too. This I plan to keep.

 

Well now with my amp dead, my 2.1 setup is noiseless...and that sucks! I'm kid and wife-free for the afternoon! I have no tunes! Well I am using the Logitech X-230 I gave her...and those still impress me at how good they sound for a small, cheap, old 2.1 PC speaker setup....but they pale to my Pioneers.

 

I started researching Class T/D amps, and my budget...which as a college student, parent, etc...I could do $100 realistically. $200 at most if I can replace the E9 as well.

 

Do I NEED to replace the E9? No...but if I go with a receiver that has a good headphone output, then why would I need to keep it? I do like the thought of small amps thought, and I only need a couple of inputs and outputs in all honesty. But I would also like to simplify things as well...I have a huge wiring mess that I'd love to clean up behind my desk. And if I can simplify my desk audio solution I am game. My sound card's HP amp is pretty damn good too, even from the FP connection of my PC...but it's really nice to have a volume knob and more power when I want it.

 

I started looking to just replace my speaker amp...but I would like to have a dedicated subwoofer output. I don't like the hi-level option. As I stated earlier, if I used the RCA pass-thru on the sub-100, it would have a 275HZ/12db crossover to my speaker amp...and honestly I only run my sub on rare occasion. It's nice to have when I want it, but I don't want my audio system to depend on it and I don't want it modifying my signal. Is that a legitimate concern?

 

Hardware I'm looking at: 

 

Sherwood RX4109 - http://www.amazon.com/Sherwood-RX-4109-Stereo-Receiver-Black/dp/B000MBUSD6/ref=pd_sim_e_8   - It's a beast and I'd have to put a monitor on it to make it fit on my desk. Hence why I went with smaller dedicated amps a couple years ago. Also how is the headphone output on this? The 4105 is $10 cheaper and an option too.

 

A friend over at TechPowerUp! recommended the Emotiva a100: http://shop.emotiva.com/products/a100

 

Another friend suggested I just go with this: https://www.springwateraudio.com/store/index.php?main_page=product_info&cPath=1&products_id=51#.UmvxRPmshcb

 

I considered a Lepai 2020+, but I see so many hit and miss reviews and it's lower power. I want to have some good power for those times when I can crank it up. I may grab one at $20 anyways just to have something until I decide what to do. But I am posting here in the hopes I can get some assistance as I'm going different directions now.

 

EDIT Addition to the list: The Maverick A1...how would it suit my needs? http://www.mav-audio.com/base/product/tube_magic_a1/hardware_a1

 

Should I just replace my small Class-T amp with another one? 

Should I get a receiver and replace both my amps?

Should I get an AB amp?

Should I wire through my Sub to simplify things even though I use it less often than my speakers and HP's?

 

I'm looking for good options in the 100-200 range please. I am researching as I type this, and there's just soooo many opinions and more questions and many threads that never show resolution out there on the web. I have always appreciated the support and response from the Head-Fi community so I ask you guys once again for help! I am leaning towards the receiver option, maybe the route I should've went 2 years ago. But will it be safe to put my 23" Dell IPS monitor on? Also if I can find a smaller amp like this TEAC for $200: http://www.amazon.com/Teac-AH01-B-Amplifier-Digital-Converter/dp/B006I6FXDY/ref=prid-20&qid=1382739449&sr=8-13&keywords=teac, then it'd fit under my Staples monitor stand: http://www.staples.com/Staples-Standard-Steel-Monitor-Riser/product_643687?cid=PS:GooglePLAs:643687&KPID=643687&srccode=cii_17588969&cpncode=33-187205033-2, I have one for each monitor on my dual workstation desk/bench. One contains the keyboard/mouse for the secondary PC I'm working on..my main monitor has my Dayton and FiiO amps, and a usb HDD under it. 

 

What I seek: I want clean sound, that can go decently loud on both speakers and headphones. If it's not worth it to replace the E9, it would be nice to keep everything on the desk and accessable...which would mean for me finding a smaller speaker amp solution that will work well for my needs. But maybe I need some education on what it is I really need...which is also why I'm asking for help here on Head-Fi. Thanks for your time!


Edited by Kursah - 10/26/13 at 12:33pm
post #2 of 32
Thread Starter 

Note: Upon re-reading the Dayton Sub-100 RCA passthru, it seems it is 20-20 on RCA and 275-20k on hi-level for satellite speakers.

 

Now to test if I can get a passthru signal with the sub off.

 

The more I read about the Emotiva and Maverick the more I like the sound of them! 

post #3 of 32
Thread Starter 

More notes from my research... please post suggestions and experienced opinions if ya got em.

 

Maverick A1 -

PROS: 2 amps in one, size will fit under my monitor stand, should power my speakers (84db) at least decently well, power swtich on the front, fairly good reviews, can change out tubes and mod. Will power my ear gear better than my FiiO E9 and is recommended for bassheads (me!).

CONS: Maxes out my budget, only ~20wpc may not be loud enough...but I wonder if it would at least be close to what the DTA-100a was? Line out is not muted when using headphones meaning if you use it for a SUB it will always be going regardless of output you use. Some complain on humming noises.

 

Emotiva mini-X a100:

PROS: On sale for $169, but still spendy, lots of power with really good reviews, 5-year warranty, has line out as well and 3 different ways it can be powered on, size should fit nicely for my needs, claims 50wpc.

CONS: May have to move the FiiO E9 to a new location to make room since this is a dedicated speaker amp, not sure if line-out is affected by internal volume or not as it's a chaining line-out. Can't find as much about people using it as the A1 on here. Something that size should have a headphone output as well imho (me being picky tho...because then I can sell my FiiO and recoup some losses). Power switch on the back, not sure if any option will work for my needs...this thing will be under my computer monitor stand...I can reach behind it, but it'll be kind of a pain...also don't see the need to have it on all the time either.

 

SMSL SA-98E Digital Amplifier:

PROS: More powerful amp chip than what's in the A1/D1, smaller size, supposedly good overall output. Price closer to my true budget.

CONS: More limited, not as much out there about it, not sure on warranty or support.

 

Now I'm looking at some receivers, since at that price they are huge but may offer me speakers + headphone power...though I am having trouble finding good reports for headphone usage so please any help here is great!

 

Sherwood RX4105

or 4109

Sony SRDH130

Still looking at others, the local craigslist and ebay are both full of guys that know what they want for their parts...most are out of my budget. If I went with a receiver, I'd have to rearrange my desk to try and make it work and also would need it to have a comparable headphone output compared to my FiiO E9. All of these are so large that I'd have to put a monitor on them..which may block some ventilation...so working on that solution too...not sure this is the route I can go even if I want to. Help please?

post #4 of 32
If you want to stick with another t-amp, I can highly recommend the Indeed TA2021 (I have two of them). It uses the TA2021 chipset instead of the TK2050 in the Dayton, so a touch less max output. In my research before buying, the better built TA2021 amps were thought to have better SQ than your Dayton. Here's a testimonial about the Indeed.

I have heard that SMSL products have quality control/reliability problems, so I would avoid them.

My guess is that the Emotiva would be a better quality amp than the Maverick Audio A1 (and better than probably any amp in this price range), but Maverick Audio does make good stuff. I have their D1 dac/pre-amp/headphone amp. No complaints.

Sherwood has a decent reputation for the price. Since you have a sub, I would go with an AVR over a 2 channel stereo receiver like the Sherwood. The bass management feature in the AVR would allow you to set the crossover higher than the low frequency roll off of the speakers. This often results in the speakers sounding a bit better (because they don't have to try to reproduce those very low frequencies), and better bass since a sub typically can do a better job than speakers can. You can get a factory refurbished/factory warrantied Denon, Onkyo, or Yamaha from accessories4less.com. I would take one of those far before the Sony receiver you are considering (a lot of Sony receivers are not very good quality).
Edited by cel4145 - 10/27/13 at 9:13am
post #5 of 32

Wow... you know what you could do maybe... try an EmoTiva Mini X. It's a speaker amp I believe and I see you have already found it! 

 

Non the less. You may want to get it, along with a Fiio E11 [around $35 used] for use with speakers and headphones. The E11 will drive most headphones UNDER 300 OHMS 

 

but the awesome part is the Emotiva Mini X is a VERY popular Headphone amp for Ortho or Planar Dynamic Headphones. 

 

Non the less, I'm not a big SPEAKER amp guy, so I'd suggest trying to work with the Mini X. 

 

And since this is Head Fi, I think if and when you get the urge to upgrade your headphones, you should look into ortho dynamics to pair with a newly aquired mini X. There are companies like [Moon Audio I think] that sell dapters that will allow you to listen to your headphones from the Speaker Taps on teh mini X, how ever as you noted teh Mini X is one HELL of a powerful amp for headphones SO I suggest you maybe look into getting a resitance adapter for one of the Mini X's output, and use that as a dedicated Headphone out [until the day arrives when you need the FULL power of the Mini X]

 

Non teh less if the Mini X has multiple speakers out, you can use one of them for headphones, it sadly will cost you a little extra money NON the less though the amp is well recommended here on Head Fi! Espically for Orthodynamics [which feature very Linear Bass and open Back Design]

 

So again, I'm down for recommending the Mini X. based on it's usability with your current speakers and it's value as a powerful Headphone Amp Solution in teh future! 

post #6 of 32
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by cel4145 View Post

If you want to stick with another t-amp, I can highly recommend the Indeed TA2021 (I have two of them). It uses the TA2021 chipset instead of the TK2050 in the Dayton, so a touch less max output. In my research before buying, the better built TA2021 amps were thought to have better SQ than your Dayton. Here's a testimonial about the Indeed.

I have heard that SMSL products have quality control/reliability problems, so I would avoid them.

My guess is that the Emotiva would be a better quality amp than the Maverick Audio A1 (and better than probably any amp in this price range), but Maverick Audio does make good stuff. I have their D1 dac/pre-amp/headphone amp. No complaints.

Sherwood has a decent reputation for the price. Since you have a sub, I would go with an AVR over a 2 channel stereo receiver like the Sherwood. The bass management feature in the AVR would allow you to set the crossover higher than the low frequency roll off of the speakers. This often results in the speakers sounding a bit better (because they don't have to try to reproduce those very low frequencies), and better bass since a sub typically can do a better job than speakers can. You can get a factory refurbished/factory warrantied Denon, Onkyo, or Yamaha from accessories4less.com. I would take one of those far before the Sony receiver you are considering (a lot of Sony receivers are not very good quality).

 

Thank you very much for your input! I'll steer clear of SMSL! I was looking at that Indeed last night actually, I'll add it to my budget list for consideration! :)

 

Ya from my research I gotta agree the speaker amp on the Emotiva is superior to the Maverick, but the thing I like about the Maverick is it'll replace both my current amps with one and supposedly has a very good HP amp output (better than my E9 at least). Having only $200 makes this tough.

 

Do Denon's, Onkyo's and Yamaha AVR's have good HP outputs? Honestly if I gotta fit a full-size receiver on my computer desk for my computer audio, I would hope I could buy one in my budget that will allow me to sell off my FiiO E9 hp amp as well.

 

Thanks for the heads up on the Sony and Sherwoods. I'm not too awful worried about the crossover as I'd utilize my EQ for that in software like I'm used to...but on second thought it'd make tuning my speakers for optimal sound a lot better overall it seems. I am going to that site now! :)

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mshenay View Post
 

Wow... you know what you could do maybe... try an EmoTiva Mini X. It's a speaker amp I believe and I see you have already found it! 

 

Non the less. You may want to get it, along with a Fiio E11 [around $35 used] for use with speakers and headphones. The E11 will drive most headphones UNDER 300 OHMS 

 

but the awesome part is the Emotiva Mini X is a VERY popular Headphone amp for Ortho or Planar Dynamic Headphones. 

 

Non the less, I'm not a big SPEAKER amp guy, so I'd suggest trying to work with the Mini X. 

 

And since this is Head Fi, I think if and when you get the urge to upgrade your headphones, you should look into ortho dynamics to pair with a newly aquired mini X. There are companies like [Moon Audio I think] that sell dapters that will allow you to listen to your headphones from the Speaker Taps on teh mini X, how ever as you noted teh Mini X is one HELL of a powerful amp for headphones SO I suggest you maybe look into getting a resitance adapter for one of the Mini X's output, and use that as a dedicated Headphone out [until the day arrives when you need the FULL power of the Mini X]

 

Non teh less if the Mini X has multiple speakers out, you can use one of them for headphones, it sadly will cost you a little extra money NON the less though the amp is well recommended here on Head Fi! Espically for Orthodynamics [which feature very Linear Bass and open Back Design]

 

So again, I'm down for recommending the Mini X. based on it's usability with your current speakers and it's value as a powerful Headphone Amp Solution in teh future! 

 

Thanks for your response! I already have a FiiO E9 for headphones, and it's good for 600ohms or less iirc. I am looking at that emotiva...I'm just concerned with powering it on and off at this point seeing as the power switch is on the back and where it'd go on my desk would not make the rear power switch very accessable. I have read about people using it as an HP amp for Orthos, so maybe someday if I get it I can try that out! :) Thanks for the recommendations!

post #7 of 32
Receiver headphone output tends to vary, and some (many) don't have very low output impedance and are best used to drive higher impedance headphones. You'd have to search the literature for a particular model and/or contact the manufacturer to find out.

I would bet on the Maverick sounding a little better than your Dayton amp and still plenty of power. So seems like a win-win upgrade to me, too, over the Emotiva if you like the idea of the internal headphone amp. Plus, the footprint is definitely more desktop friendly than the Emotiva, which has the depth of a full sized AVR.

Yeah. AVRs have low pass and high pass filters with their bass management, which I find really does help a lot with the bass integration. Keep in mind that it is generally digital. So if you run an analog source to the AVR, it's going to convert it back to digital to implement the crossover, and then back to analog again. Of course with an AVR, you can use HDMI out from a graphics card instead of using your sound card or optical out from your motherboard audio and run digital directly to it. Or if you are using any DSP features with your Auzentech, you can run optical out from it to the AVR. So you might (hard to predict) get an SQ improvement depending on whether or not the DAC in the Auzentech is better than in the AVR.
post #8 of 32
Quote:
Originally Posted by cel4145 View Post

Receiver headphone output tends to vary, and some (many) don't have very low output impedance and are best used to drive higher impedance headphones. You'd have to search the literature for a particular model and/or contact the manufacturer to find out.

I would bet on the Maverick sounding a little better than your Dayton amp and still plenty of power. So seems like a win-win upgrade to me, too, over the Emotiva if you like the idea of the internal headphone amp. Plus, the footprint is definitely more desktop friendly than the Emotiva, which has the depth of a full sized AVR.

Yeah. AVRs have low pass and high pass filters with their bass management, which I find really does help a lot with the bass integration. Keep in mind that it is generally digital. So if you run an analog source to the AVR, it's going to convert it back to digital to implement the crossover, and then back to analog again. Of course with an AVR, you can use HDMI out from a graphics card instead of using your sound card or optical out from your motherboard audio and run digital directly to it. Or if you are using any DSP features with your Auzentech, you can run optical out from it to the AVR. So you might (hard to predict) get an SQ improvement depending on whether or not the DAC in the Auzentech is better than in the AVR.

Yea... I think CEL has a speaker set up... I'd listen to him <3 

post #9 of 32
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by cel4145 View Post

Receiver headphone output tends to vary, and some (many) don't have very low output impedance and are best used to drive higher impedance headphones. You'd have to search the literature for a particular model and/or contact the manufacturer to find out.

I would bet on the Maverick sounding a little better than your Dayton amp and still plenty of power. So seems like a win-win upgrade to me, too, over the Emotiva if you like the idea of the internal headphone amp. Plus, the footprint is definitely more desktop friendly than the Emotiva, which has the depth of a full sized AVR.

Yeah. AVRs have low pass and high pass filters with their bass management, which I find really does help a lot with the bass integration. Keep in mind that it is generally digital. So if you run an analog source to the AVR, it's going to convert it back to digital to implement the crossover, and then back to analog again. Of course with an AVR, you can use HDMI out from a graphics card instead of using your sound card or optical out from your motherboard audio and run digital directly to it. Or if you are using any DSP features with your Auzentech, you can run optical out from it to the AVR. So you might (hard to predict) get an SQ improvement depending on whether or not the DAC in the Auzentech is better than in the AVR.

 

Well honestly I'd rather have something smaller that fits on my desk...I can't say I'm an audiophile by any means. But I'd like my Pioneer SP-BS21's to sound good and go loud when I want them to and have my Datyon SUB-100 work well along with them..I suppose if I have to give in and go hi-level inputs to the sub again, so be it. I was just hoping after 2 years something would be out that could be a little better quality than the dayton and have sub-out for around the $100-200 mark that would fit on my desk. Wish I had the time and resources to invent that! :)

 

There is one comparison I found between the Maverick and Dayton, but I'm not sure how serious I can take it...would you take a read and see what you think? 

http://www.tnt-audio.com/ampli/maverick_a1_e.html

http://www.tnt-audio.com/ampli/dayton_dta100_e.html

 

Again I do like my FiiO E9 HP amp, but the Maverick HP amp is much better just from what I've read...though I can't say I've read any direct comparisons (I have the first E9, not E9k). The E9 is good...and honestly I can't complain overall. But I could sell it and recoup some losses which would make the Emotiva and Maverick A1 near the same price after all is said and done. I do like the Emotiva's 5-year warranty, I also like what I've read about Maverick's customer service too. 

 

I could run digital from my Auzen, or Z87 onboard or vid card sure, my issue is being somewhat tight on space if going with an AVR. I am really bouncing between the Emotiva and Maverick, wishing the Maverick had more power just because I don't want to come away disappointed...though if it sounds better overall maybe it won't be that big of a deal...but these Pioneers are 84db...so to get some good noise out of them will take some effort.

 

With your recommendation so far I am leaning towards Maverick A1 + sell FiiO E9 at this point. Please keep the info coming! Thank you so much! :)

post #10 of 32
Thread Starter 

And what do you think of the Denon AVR-1312 for my needs? The price is sure right, and I have had great experience with Denon products. I still love my D2000's! I can't seem to find anything on the output of the headphone circuit though...

 

http://www.accessories4less.com/make-a-store/item/DENAVR1312/DENON-AVR-1312-5.1-Channel-A/V-Home-Theater-Receiver/1.html#!specifications

 

Still it's HUGE! Not sure where or how I'd fit that on my PC desk. Especially with 2 screens. My desk is very similar to this: http://www.sears.com/shc/s/p_10153_12605_00841573000P?srccode=cii_13736960&cpncode=35-89634288-2&sid=IDx20070921x00003d&s_tnt=47817:0:0&executed=true&PDP_REDIRECT=false   But all wood, a little larger in all dimensions. The shelf has my amps, pens, external HDD bay, 2 monitors each on a stand, etc. I suppose if the receiver never gets hot I could just put my smaller monitor on it.

 

EDIT: The more I read about that Denon the more I like it...though it seems I'd need to go to the next model up to get the EQ and such. Not sure I'd really need it as both my Asus Z87-Pro onboard and Auzentech X-Fi Forte have software EQ's that work very well. I know it's huge...and I'm nervous it won't really fit my desk. I may have to add a board just because my monitor shelf is only about 12" in depth. A lot of folks recommend the Sherwood 4105 for it's power and affordability...but then those same folks are saying for a little more this Denon unit is well worth it. I could finally try digial out and see how it works for me. Or I could use my analogue wiring as-is and be good to go.

 

I just need to know if this unit has a good HP circuit! Anyone out there know? How does it compare to my E9? My Auzen's circuitry?

 

If it does..I will probably sell my E9 since I won't have room on the desk for it anymore. And I suppose I could always go back to using the HP amp on my Auzen...it actually sounds good directly from the card and surprisingly good from the FP output as well (both are amplified). Honestly I notice stronger bass from the auzen with my D2000, but the E9 has more power overall, seems to just take it all to the next level. I just really like having a volume knob for my headphone...as sometimes the volume buttons on my old G15 aren't recognized as a command while gaming or in menus of a game (I'm looking at you Battlefield BC2 and 3!). The E9 has been great, especially when the wife and I want to jam out at night without keeping the kids up, she runs the Sony XB500's in the 3.5mm port and I run my D2000's or Iron Buds in the 1/4" port with a 1/8-1/4 adapter that came with the D2000. Set to low gain and both of us are very happy!


Edited by Kursah - 10/27/13 at 2:02pm
post #11 of 32
I'm not an engineer, so I don't know what to think about that guy's analysis of the Maverick other than tubes do affect the sound. So different tubes could change the sound signature. And, keep in mind that doubling the wattage to speakers only produces 3 db more output. A 1 db change is considered a noticeable difference, and it takes +10 db for a perceived doubling in volume. So the difference in wattage may not be significant to you.

I have an older Denon AVR-888 that I have enjoyed, and my neighbor has the Denon 1613--sounds pretty good. The Audyssey MultEQ room correction on the Denon 1613 and above is pretty good stuff. However, definitely better verify that the Denon headphone output is low enough to handle low impedance headphones.
post #12 of 32
Thread Starter 

Good point on wattage and db. 

 

I just have my doubt with the Maverick...though it does receive good praise and support. It's the most expensive option out of my choices. I'm really leaning towards the Denon option for all that it offers.

 

If I could swing the 1612 which runs ~ $225 shipped I would...I can't though. :(   So I'm hoping the 1312 is still a solid option. Thanks for your input thus far!

 

I am researching all I can to find if the HP output on the Denon would handle my headphones and earbuds...any chance I could get some direction and assistance there?

I've been using the FP output on my case from my Auzen and frankly it sounds much better than expected. So maybe I won't be too concerned with it...I dunno. I wish I could afford to demo 2 of 3 options...

 

Thanks so much for your help though, I have narrowed down my options and research greatly because of this thread and am looking forward to making a proper decision! I just gotta decide do I want a lower power amp and good HP amp or a more all around AVR.

 

EDIT: Denon's website states that it has "Low Impedance Drive Capability" but I'm assuming that's for speakers, which mine are 6-ohm so it's probably a good thing even though they're not 4-ohm.

 

EDIT PT 2: Still no luck, but I happened to research your HK 3390 (it's $265 on Amazon...wish it was $200!!!) and a guy asked and apparently that has a very good rating for headphone use!


Edited by Kursah - 10/27/13 at 4:48pm
post #13 of 32
If it's not listed on their website (I'm agree that they are talking about speaker output with what you posted), I think you probably have to contact Denon to find out specs on the headphone output.

The Denon 1612 has great output for the price (see these measurements). It would have no problem pushing those Pioneers.
post #14 of 32
Thread Starter 

Thanks for the link! :) I have no doubts that either the 1312 or the 1612 will be weak in pushing my Pioneers...but I bet that 1612 would be the one to go with for the $$$.

 

How do you like your HK 3390? Seems to review really really well too, better than anything in my price range of course!

 

If you had $200 to spend what would you do?

 

I am thinking that I may try to contact Denon. I would and could "ASSume" that the AVR would play nice with headphones, seeing how easy the Denon D2000's are...I would "ASSume" that they'd want their AVR's to play nice with their nice HP's that cost as much as the AVR's or more. But at the same time I don't want to make an ass out of myself and buy something that doesn't turn out to have what I invested in. Thanks so much for your patience and help Cel. I do greatly appreciate it!

post #15 of 32
I'd have to find out about the headphone output from the Denon before making a decision. I wouldn't assume anything.

You know, you could always take your headphones over to your local BestBuy and see how it sounds on a low end Denon model. If it sounds bad, then might be a good guess that the 2012 or 2013 models are not better.
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