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Headphone and receiver connection advice

post #1 of 7
Thread Starter 

Hi guys,

Long time lurker in need of some advice. I'm not totally up on components and while I appreciate good sound I'd say I'm more on an audiophile wanna be.

My main stereo receiver is Yamaha RS700. I'm buying a set of AKG Q701 or Grade SR325 headphones.

My 3 audio components are connected directly to the RS700 and are Turntable, CD player and ZuneHD (connected through dock).


I've read that while this setup should be fine for playing through speakers (PSB Imagine) it may not be the best way to listen to headphones that need an amp to drive them. Could someone confirm if I should connect through an amp, a reasonably priced option and anything that would improve my setup.


Thanks a lot.


post #2 of 7

the Q701s probably won't be too good through the headphone jack on the receiver but you might want to look into wiring it to spade/banana connectors and using the speaker outputs on the back. 

Edited by linglingjr - 2/11/14 at 9:19am
post #3 of 7
Thread Starter 

I never thought of that.

Any risk of damaging the headphones? Is there a source for information on how to do it?


Thanks a lot.

post #4 of 7
Thread Starter 

I looked for cables to plug the q701 where the speakers plug into the receiver but I can't find any.


I want to get the most out of the headphones.

post #5 of 7

There is risk in damaging them if you turn the receiver on and it's at a high volume, or if you bump the volume knob and it blasts insanely loud then of course.  People say to turn the amp on with the volume knob at 0 and slowly turn it up so you don't blast the drivers to hell.  


As for the wire you'll probably have to buy the speaker connector and just splice off the end of one of your q701 cables (if I remember they came with two cables) it should be an easy solder job, if you don't know how to solder it's a great skill to have.   If re-terminating one of your cables doesn't sound like something you want to do you can buy a custom cable from someone though I don't remember who.


Just google "Headphones Receiver" and you'll get pages of useful links, the first being this: http://www.head-fi.org/t/635992/receiver-as-headphone-amp


^that's useful because MalVeauX is the guy you want to contact if you have questions about using receivers with headphones, I'm sure he knows a guy/service that will sell you a custom cable as well.  


This is one of his threads: http://www.head-fi.org/t/629352/he-500-lcd2-d5000-dt770-sr80-on-a-speaker-amp-emotiva-mini-x-a-100-project


EDIT: The 9th post of his thread has a link to a place that can get you the cable you want: http://www.btg-audio.com/index.htm

Edited by linglingjr - 2/11/14 at 10:58pm
post #6 of 7

You should try using the headphone jack first, if it goes to sufficiently loud volumes, then there should be no reason to use speaker outputs for the phones. 

I've read that in many cases, headphone jacks on stereo receivers are in the same amp circuit as the speaker outputs, just with a resistor inline to make the headphone jack's output power more appropriate for headphones.

Edited by CrocCap - 2/12/14 at 12:18am
post #7 of 7

Yeah, there isn't really any good reason to risk putting any dynamic headphone into speaker taps.

Planar headphones can often take a bit of a pounding as the voice 'coil' is spread across the entire diaphragm and can dissipate heat fairly easily, but dynamic voice coils that are bunched together and hidden under a diaphragm, usually inside some sort of plastic chassis can build up heat up and fry much easier.


Stick to the headphone jack, as the amp you're using isn't bad. 

The risk to damage isn't worth the 1% increase in sound quality you may get from bypassing the resistors. 


Many people knock speaker amps for their allegedly crappy headphone-outs, but we're really talking about less than 5% differences in sound. 

Only in some rare cases speaker amps TRULY have abominations for headphone-outs. 

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