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Help choosing PC audio setup <$300, primarily for PC gaming

post #1 of 4
Thread Starter 

Not looking for a microphone (been using a Blue Yeti for a while, and I'm happy with it).

 

However, my headphone audio is lacking.

 

My PC is a high-end build, but I'm using onboard sound (Realtek ALC1150). I got a pair of Philips O'Neill SHO9560BK/28 as a gift a long time ago and I've been using those. Even with my limited knowledge and experience with high-quality audio setups, it seems like the audio is so-so. They're connected directly to my front-panel audio port. 

 

My primary use will be gaming. I play a variety of genres and a pretty even blend of casual and competitive. I very rarely listen to music anywhere other than my car, so the only uses besides gaming would be for youtube videos, skype calls, and the occasional podcasts and blu-rays. I am not a fan of powerful bass. Volume and clarity/detail is most important, as well as positional awareness for competitive gaming.

 

But I'm not totally sure where my money would be best spent to enhance audio -- new headphones, DAC, AMP, new sound card, or all of the above, or some of the above, etc. 

 

Any help is greatly appreciated!


Edited by StephenP - 12/29/13 at 9:54am
post #2 of 4
Thread Starter 

Anyone?  From what I've read, a DAC helps to reduce signal noise, which I don't hear at all using my current headphones. My motherboard apparently has an onboard headphone amplifier for headphones up to 600 ohms, and I feel like I may not even notice a difference using a standalone DAC vs my onboard ALC1150.

post #3 of 4

AKG K612 Pro (120-Ohm) headphones, $160-$200

Creative Sound Blaster Z sound card, $60-$90

post #4 of 4
Sony ma900 as well. Right up your alley with the sound you describe. Then you would want a sound card for better sound in general and virtual surround (for gaming)
Look at mad lust envy's guide
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