I have been an audiophile for many years but not on the headphone bandwagon. But through fate (and a spinal cord injury) I have rediscovered audio. Like many, I am starting out with many iOS devices and mac computers as sources. My high end stereo system is sitting in my closet. Damn shame. My home system consisted of Apogee Stages with Forte audio amplification. For a while I had two Hafler 9500 running as monoblocks. Those were the days.
For Christmas, my wife bought me a set of BOSE IE2 IEMs. The stock sound is ok but the comfort is great. But I think my old pair of Skullcandy IEMs sound better. Am I crazy? I found this break app by Onkyo that will play HRA files and has an amazing EQ. With that, I have been able to significantly improve the sound of BOSE. Mostly fix the mid bass bloat.
Since I am an admitted Mac fan boy, I have many apple devices to choose from. The 4 portables are the iPod nano (watch kind), my 4s and 5s. I also have an ipod video. Because I am needing the eq so much, I have been using the 4s and 5s. I recently added the FIio E11. It does play louder and does sound better with my 4s but I think my 5s has more space and better depth but is somewhat lacking in bass dynamics. Since the 5s does not have a line out, I tried the E11 with the headphone out and, while it played louder, it sounded worse. The soundstage seemed to completely collapse.
I have ordered the HD700 and just recently ordered the JDS C5D. I am hoping C5D will improve things until my HD700s arrive (next week I think).
So now my question. I am tying to come up with a home solution. I think I have the portable one figured out. I am thinking about using my Mac Mini (currently in service as my movie server to multiple Apple TVs in the house) to serve my music files on my nightstand. Will the C5D work well enough here or should I look at an "affordable" home dac/amp solution.
Think affordable as my re-entrance into this world is already breaking my wallet.