Originally Posted by wintage
Hi, i live in Brazil and i have this once in a year opportunity to buy things from US, and I need your help to decide what is best for me, with a price range around 200~220$
I've been looking the HD 598, 558, ATH M50 and other headphones below 200$; but plugging these in an onboard soundcard is worth the price? What soundcards/amps do you recommend? My main music genres are bass-oriented (house, chillstep, electro, rock etc), and I'll be using it for movies and some gaming as well.
ps: sorry for my bad english
just curious if you would be requiring these headphones to be portable (some of your options: HD98 are open, while the ATH M50 is closed), and if you are really only listening to bass-heavy music, you can get fun / v-shaped / non-neutral headphones & find them to be very enjoyable.
I always recommend spending more money on your headphones as headphones have a bigger impact on your sound quality compared to amps/dacs... esp if you are at the sub-$300 price point. I personally think that the ATH M50s are a bit overrated nowadays as there are a lot of newer headphones that perform just as well if not better, but just don't have such a large fan following.
I haven't personally heard the DT 990, but from reading about them, they seemed to be only suitable for home use. They are open & high impedance. That is a point to consider as I saw you are looking at portable amp/dacs... you won't need portable amp/dacs with these headphones, you can get better desktop dac/amp setups.
Is your $220 price range covering both the headphones & amp/dac? If it is, I would say that budget is too small and I would recommend maxing out your budget into headphones that do not require an amp/dac. A few great portable closed headphones that do not require an amp at the $200 mark off the top of my head include the Sony MDR-1R ($180ish) vs the new AKG K545 ($200 at razerdogaudio).
personal opinion disclaimer: The thing is that you will be spending around $100+ for an amp/dac and it's not going to improve the sound quality of your $200 headphones by 50%. It's not going to double the sound quality of your $100 headphones. Might as well get $200-$300 headphones rather than a $100 amp/dac in my personal opinion lol. You can score some seriously 'best-in-class' type headphones with $300.