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Need help with ortho headphone and amp combo

post #1 of 8
Thread Starter 

Hi, I'm looking for my first pair of full size headphones.  I am considering the HE-400, the ZMF modded Fostex T50RP (with upgrades), both in the $270-300 range.  If you have any other HP of comparable SQ and price please recommend them.  I also need an amp for both these cans, I have a Fiio X3 which I'm not sure is adequate to power these at optimal SQ, but I can use it for a DAC, so I am looking at amp or amp+dac options.  I'm considering:

 

Project Ember

Little Dot (which version pairs best?)

Audio-GD NFB-11.32

Magni/Vali-Modi

 

I'm not sure if I need to upgrade my X3 dac, but if the difference in SQ is significant I guess it's worth the money.

I'm not sure if some the listed amp are overkill or pairs poorly with the HPs, so opinions about them and other amp recommendations for the above HPs are welcome.

 

Music genres I mostly listen to: new wave, post-punk, alternative rock/pop, shoegaze, synth pop, chamber pop, chanson, and occasionally folk, jazz, and classical, ambient, and soul.  I would prefer a decent soundstage so the open HE-400 is better than the ZMF?  Though for the genres I mostly listen to I'm not sure a bigger soundstage matters.

post #2 of 8

Mad dogs is a closed design phone.

 

I own HE 400, if this is your audiophile quality phone, then you wont be disappointed. HE 400 is suitable for jazz.

 

regarding dac/amp, consider audio gd 15.32 instead of 11.32. I was also considering 11.32. But I was told that the amp circuit for 11.32 and 15.32 is same. 11.32 differs in DAC. But the difference in sound quality may not be noticable. You can save money with 15.32.

post #3 of 8
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by rubinstein View Post
 

Mad dogs is a closed design phone.

 

I own HE 400, if this is your audiophile quality phone, then you wont be disappointed. HE 400 is suitable for jazz.

 

regarding dac/amp, consider audio gd 15.32 instead of 11.32. I was also considering 11.32. But I was told that the amp circuit for 11.32 and 15.32 is same. 11.32 differs in DAC. But the difference in sound quality may not be noticable. You can save money with 15.32.

Thanks!  Where do you buy the 15.32?  I can't find it on the the audio gd website.

 

I prefer the open HE-400 but the ZMF is another option because it's more portable and soundstage may not matter with the type of music I listen to.  Also I hear that the HE400 has a weaker midrange and sibilance that requires modding and EQing.  

post #4 of 8
post #5 of 8
Quote:
Originally Posted by Za Warudo View Post
 

Thanks!  Where do you buy the 15.32?  I can't find it on the the audio gd website.

 

I prefer the open HE-400 but the ZMF is another option because it's more portable and sound stage may not matter with the type of music I listen to.  Also I hear that the HE400 has a weaker mid range and sibilance that requires modding and EQing.  


The FiiO X3 uses one WM8740 DAC chip, the 15.32 using dual WM8741 DAC chips.

I'm on week four with my new NFB-15.32, no regrets, get the TXCO upgrade.

post #6 of 8
Thread Starter 

Thanks for the replies.  What does the TXCO upgrade improve?

post #7 of 8
Quote:
Originally Posted by Za Warudo View Post
 

Thanks for the replies.  What does the TXCO upgrade improve?

 

I think it has something to do with the digital audio signal input into the 15.32.

Better control of the digital feed?

I figured it's only $20, for something I'm going to use for years (pennies a day).

post #8 of 8
Thread Starter 

I got this from the Audinst website:

 

Quote:
TCXO is made of an extremely thin crystal, creating peculiar 
vibration when applied with electricity. It is often used on 
resonance circuit to generate uniform frequency of electronic 
circuits. However, frequency error in which vibration counts of 
TCXO vary can arise depending on outside temperature, and such 
appearance can become a main reason for errors or frequency 
distortions on precision electrical equipments. In order to reduce 
frequency discrepancies due to exterior temperature, TCXO 
uniformly maintains interior temperature within crystal oscillator 
and fixates the frequency, making it an essential component for 
audio equipments sensitive to frequencies.
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