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Upgrade from Schiit Magni?

post #1 of 20
Thread Starter 

Hello,

 

I am wondering if upgrading from a Schiit Magni to a better amp in the 300 dollar price range will provide a substantial improvement in the sound quality of my HE-400 and Mad Dog headphones. 

 

If so what amp would you guys recommend? 

 

Thanks. 


Edited by Ginron - 1/8/14 at 4:37pm
post #2 of 20
"substantial" is in the ear of the beholder. What do you think is lacking in your current set-up?
post #3 of 20
Thread Starter 

The only thing i think might be lacking is my amp.

 

i hear people say that the Magni can be bright which is not a great match with the HE-400 since its already a little bright as it is.

 

if a new amp that is more neutral than the Magni could tame the highs of the HE-400 a little bit while improving the overall SQ, that would be ideal. 

 

or would a new DAC help more than a new amp (i don't think it would but maybe i'm wrong)?

 

i have the Modi right now. 

 

or would i just be spending my money for no reason?


Edited by Ginron - 1/8/14 at 4:59pm
post #4 of 20
What I meant in my question is: What do you think is lacking in what *you* currently hear with your current system? Not what you have read - what you currently hear. Nothing is going to change the sound as much as a new pair of headphones. A good amp might impart a little coloration - a little warmer or a little brighter - but personally, I think the folks who say there are night & day differences between amps are hearing something else. For example, if the amp doesn't have enough gain or current headroom to properly drive the headphones, then sure - you are going to hear a difference when you use an amp that can adequately provide those needs to those specific headphones. But given two amps that are already meeting the needs of a specific headphone? I don't buy that there will be a big difference - the differences will be much more subtle.

Of course, this is all IME, IMHO and YMMV... smily_headphones1.gif
post #5 of 20
Thread Starter 

What i think could be improved to my ears is the slightly sharp treble on the HE-400s and if some of that is being caused by the amp then it might be a good idea get one that is more neutral.

 

however i don't have any way to tell if the Magni does add to the sharp treble of the HE-400 since i only have the Magni and the Fiio E12 (which has less power output). 

 

i think both the Mad Dog and HE-400 get around 1 watt per channel from the Magni.

 

so my questions at this point are this:

 

is the Magni neutral and is it providing enough power to drive both my headphones to their full potential?

post #6 of 20

According to Shiit the magni measures very neutral.

post #7 of 20
Well, I can tell you that at a recent head-fi meet I attended, Dan from Mr. Speakers was using a Magni to drive a pair of demo Mad Dogs. It sounded pretty darn good to me!
post #8 of 20
Thread Starter 

Yeah the Mad Dogs are great with the Magni, i don't hear anything wrong with that combo.

 

i'm just wondering if there is anything that will work better for the HE-400, but since the Magni is already neutral according to Schiit then the only reason to get a new amp would be for more power output on the HE-400 (if that is even necessary).

 

does the Magni provide enough power to drive the HE-400 to the best that it can be?

 

or would a more powerful amp make it sound better? 


Edited by Ginron - 1/9/14 at 5:06pm
post #9 of 20
Thread Starter 

Bump.

 

Is there an amp that will sound better than the Magni with the HE-400?

post #10 of 20
Thread Starter 

ok last bump and then i give up. :(

post #11 of 20
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ginron View Post
 

Yeah the Mad Dogs are great with the Magni, i don't hear anything wrong with that combo.

 

i'm just wondering if there is anything that will work better for the HE-400, but since the Magni is already neutral according to Schiit then the only reason to get a new amp would be for more power output on the HE-400 (if that is even necessary).

 

does the Magni provide enough power to drive the HE-400 to the best that it can be?

 

or would a more powerful amp make it sound better? 

Very often, we "don't hear anything wrong" until we hear something better. ;)

 

Granted, there's hype and charlatans and everything else out there that goes with the Open Marketplace.  However, ask yourself - is the entire market of headphone amplifiers outside of the Magni just BS?  Better yet, why would Schiit sell a more expensive amplifier(s) than the Magni?

 

Or are you just looking for some comfort in your purchase: someone to tell you that you've spent all you need to and can be happy in the knowledge that you can never do any better?

 

Maybe you should bump again. ;)

post #12 of 20

Have you looked at the new amp from Schiit, the Vali? I have been following the main thread for that amp and I seem to recall a few people posting favorable impressions pairing it with the HE-400. Don't know if it tames the brightness of these phones or not, but maybe someone on that thread could tell you. Also, it seems to scale really well with better DACs, but should be good with the Magni (beyond matching the aesthetics). There are also some favorable impressions of the Vali/Mad Dog combo, so you might find that to your liking as well. And the amp is only $120! I have the Modi/Magni with Mad Dog and I think this combo sounds great. I believe I will be happy for quite a while with this pairing...

post #13 of 20
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ginron View Post
 

Ok last bump and then i give up. :(

Maybe you should be asking here.

http://www.head-fi.org/t/604583/hifiman-he-400-impressions-and-discussion-thread

post #14 of 20
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by tomb View Post
 

Very often, we "don't hear anything wrong" until we hear something better. ;)

 

Granted, there's hype and charlatans and everything else out there that goes with the Open Marketplace.  However, ask yourself - is the entire market of headphone amplifiers outside of the Magni just BS?  Better yet, why would Schiit sell a more expensive amplifier(s) than the Magni?

 

Or are you just looking for some comfort in your purchase: someone to tell you that you've spent all you need to and can be happy in the knowledge that you can never do any better?

 

Maybe you should bump again. ;)

Thanks for not giving me a series of hypothetical intrapersonal questions that don't actually help me figure out what i asked. ;)

 

i'm not asking for someone to tell me that the Magni is the best you can get for psychological support. i am thoroughly enjoying both my headphones and my two amps.

 

what i want to know is if a more expensive amp will make my headphones sound even better than they already do now. 

 

or would the difference between amps only be prevalent with more expensive and more refined headphones?

 

or are all amps past a certain price (besides their different power outputs) just glorified EQs?

post #15 of 20
Thread Starter 

I don't see the Vali providing much of an improvement over the Magni, but maybe i'm wrong.

 

does anyone have both the Magni and Vali that would be willing to compare them? 

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