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Can I drive 250 ohm headphones only with a soundcard, or do I need an amp? - Page 2

post #16 of 34
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Trunks159 View Post

Any reason why you can't use open cans? The MDR MA900 doesn't need an amp. I'd recommend you go to the MDR MA900 appreciation thread, or ask about this at Mad Lust Envy's Gaming Guide. I don't usually use an amp for gaming.

The reason that's holding me back on open cans is closely related to gaming. I usually chat over Skype while playing games, and I fear that open headphones would leak too much sound, and it would be picked up by the mic. Though it's also true that I don't have a good mic, and will buy one together with the headphones. But I just don't want to realize that I've spent 300€+ on something that I can't use while gaming and chatting over skype...which is why I'm buying new cans in the first place.

post #17 of 34
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by manbear View Post
 

I think you want a soundcard for gaming, as it's the only way to get Dolby Headphone.

That's a good point. I definitely need a soundcard. But as I understood, it's not possible for a soundcard to amp the headphones well enough, I'd also need to buy an amp to go with it.

post #18 of 34
Makes sense. I prefer the K550 and A900x to the DT770. Neither of them need an amp.

Look into the iFi iCan.
post #19 of 34
Quote:
Originally Posted by Xickle View Post
 

That's a good point. I definitely need a soundcard. But as I understood, it's not possible for a soundcard to amp the headphones well enough, I'd also need to buy an amp to go with it.


It depends. I'm not that familiar with soundcards, but some of the upper-level Asus Xonar cards are supposed to have pretty decent amps. 

post #20 of 34
Quote:
Originally Posted by Xickle View Post
 

That's a good point. I definitely need a soundcard. But as I understood, it's not possible for a soundcard to amp the headphones well enough, I'd also need to buy an amp to go with it.

 

HT Omega has a couple of cards that have built in amps.  If you have a PCI slot (newer machines may not have one depending on who made the motherboard in it) you can get their Claro Halo card which can power up to a 600ohm headphone supposedly.  I have a Claro Halo right now, though I've only used it with my 150ohm Sennheiser PC-350 gaming headset.  If you only have the newer PCI Express slots they do make a version now for that called the eClaro and it's supposed to have to ability to drive high impedance headphones.  Their site doesn't say what it can handle though, but they've always gotten back to me within 1/2 a day or so of emailing them so they could tell you for sure if you asked.  I thought I asked them at one point but I'll have to dig up the replies from that time period when I get home.  

 

I've been quite happy with the HT Omega compared to other soundcards I've had before (built in and from Creative and Turtle Beach).  They haven't updated the drivers since I bought my card in 2010 except to put a driver version out for Windows 8, but on Windows 7 it hasn't needed any updates and has performed flawlessly as near as I can tell.

post #21 of 34
Quote:
Originally Posted by Xickle View Post
 

I can afford the amp, but want to order all in one go, because of the expensive shipping to my country. I also haven't bought a soundcard yet, so if those can come with integrated amps that are good enough, I'd rather go for that. Basically my setup is only in my dreams for now, so everything can still change and I am open for suggestions.

To me, the AKG K612 Pro headphones, with a Creative Labs Sound Blaster Z sound card, would make a good combo.

post #22 of 34
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by PurpleAngel View Post
 

To me, the AKG K612 Pro headphones, with a Creative Labs Sound Blaster Z sound card, would make a good combo.

These look nice, but they're open, and that creates the microphone problem that I've described on the first page. To summarize: open headphones leak too much sound, and mic may pick it up on skype.

 

However I see that you own a pair of DT-770's. Would you say they're a good pair to get? And did you perhaps try a 80 ohm and 250 ohm version to compare them? I would like to know which version I should get, since I'm probably buying an amp, it doesn't matter if the impedance is higher anyways.

post #23 of 34

My sound card (USB Creative Soundblaster Omni) has 600 Ohm headphones jack. Its fabulous and it drives Sennheiser HD 449.

post #24 of 34
Thread Starter 

What about Xonar essence soundcards? I heard they have headphones amps integrated on them. Would it be enough to drive a 250 ohm headphone just like an external amp + xonar DGX, or maybe even better? Which one would you guys recommend?

post #25 of 34
7CRn0u

It seems that a fiio e10 is needed.

post #26 of 34
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by sbellbkss View Post
 
7CRn0u

It seems that a fiio e10 is needed.

Uh uh, can't use that because no dolby drivers :/

post #27 of 34
Quote:
Originally Posted by Xickle View Post

 

However I see that you own a pair of DT-770's. Would you say they're a good pair to get? And did you perhaps try a 80 ohm and 250 ohm version to compare them? I would like to know which version I should get, since I'm probably buying an amp, it doesn't matter if the impedance is higher anyways.


The 80 ohm version is supposed to have more bass. 

post #28 of 34
Quote:
Originally Posted by Xickle View Post
 

These look nice, but they're open, and that creates the microphone problem that I've described on the first page. To summarize: open headphones leak too much sound, and mic may pick it up on skype.

 

However I see that you own a pair of DT-770's. Would you say they're a good pair to get? And did you perhaps try a 80 ohm and 250 ohm version to compare them? I would like to know which version I should get, since I'm probably buying an amp, it doesn't matter if the impedance is higher anyways.

I prefer the DT770 Pro 250-Ohm, it's a little more balanced, where as the DT770 Pro 80-Ohm has a little more bass.

To me the Audio Technica ATH-A900X, with Hifiman Velour ear pads, is a better headphone.

Also as the A900X is only 40-ohms, it can easily work with the Asus Xonar DG sound card, $27.

post #29 of 34
Quote:
Originally Posted by Xickle View Post
 

What about Xonar essence soundcards? I heard they have headphones amps integrated on them. Would it be enough to drive a 250 ohm headphone just like an external amp + xonar DGX, or maybe even better? Which one would you guys recommend?

Asus Xonar Essence STX would drive just about any headphones you might buy now or in the future.

Also an Asus Xonar DX or D1 sound card (used, $60), with an external headphone amplifier, like the Magni or O2, would give you a volume knob right at your finger tips, plus the external head amp can be used with more then just your windows PC.

post #30 of 34
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by PurpleAngel View Post
 

Asus Xonar Essence STX would drive just about any headphones you might buy now or in the future.

Also an Asus Xonar DX or D1 sound card (used, $60), with an external headphone amplifier, like the Magni or O2, would give you a volume knob right at your finger tips, plus the external head amp can be used with more then just your windows PC.

I like hearing that about the STX, however most people on this forum seem to disagree with this soundcard being used for the dt770 or any high impedance headphone for that matter. It's left me totally confused. 

Here's some threads that I've found: http://www.head-fi.org/t/454480/would-a-xonar-essence-stx-be-able-to-power-a-dt-770-250-ohm and http://www.overclock.net/t/1001916/dt-770-pro-250-ohms-for-xonar-essence-stx.

 

I'm actually leaning towards the DT770 pro 80ohm edition now, so that I don't have to worry about the amps anymore. And this thread: http://www.head-fi.org/t/498545/dt770-pro-250-vs-80-asus-xonar-essence-stx

An Asus Xonar DGX is said to drive them well, and it's really cheap too. Although I'd like to go for something better in case I upgrade in the future, but my thoughts right now are that I need to get some experience to know what I actually want. I think the DT770 will do me good as I'm a bit of a basshead, and I don't know the differences from 80 and 250 ohms, so I will just try to avoid the amp and get the 80 ohms... although to mess with my head even more some say that you still need an amp for 80 ohms. Totally confused right now, I must clear my head.

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