I knew I was a low volume listener but I confirmed it with a SPL meter :P To be honest I wasnt sure. So my equipment and my question to you all:
Test songs are Prodigy because they are loud and squashed with dynamic compressors. (extreme case) My usual songs are more soft/minimal, like burial and deadbeat.
Equipment: iPod5gVideo, Note2, iMac 2011. AKG K240Mk2, Senn HD25-1II, Westone 4R (on the way).
All music is mp3-320 and some v0 maybe.
1) in the office: iMac 2011 + AKG K240Mk2 at work which I always use just one click of 'apple volume', barely measuring 65db with a heavily squashed song like Prodigy. with the AKG I need at least 4 clicks to touch the range of 72-76db which I dont even use once every month. HD25s are 2-3db louder with the same setting but never used in the office.
2) on the go Im between the Note2 and my IpodVideo that I recently revived. I currently use the HD25 with them. Same volumes here, I stick the SPL meter right in the can touching the foam that covers the speaker and the 20-30% of the Note2 volume a dont even hit 70db...
Ill use the Westone4Rs with this setup a lot!
It generally seems that 70db is my party level after all in cans. (speakers is another story!! db there are always NOT enough!)
Well the question that is troubling me is if I need an portable amp (200usd max lets say), primarily with the portable setups and in case of an dac/amp, maybe for the iMac too.
Is the amp mainly for volume? or the extra 'current' will help the cans behave better? More tight bass (pull back will be sharper?)? A bit better quality in the full freq spectrum?
Amps I've checked in the forum: FiiO e18 (works with the Note2 and is a dac too), JDS amps maybe from the thread about 'sub-200 portable amps'.