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Amplified Headphone output + Desktop amp

post #1 of 6
Thread Starter 


I am new to this community and i apologize in advance for 2 things : I might be asking a question that has been asked before and english is not my native language :)


I have a question about computer audio regarding the connection of an amp to my soundcard.


I purchased an eClaro soundcard from HT Omega about 2 years ago.

I am VERY satisfied with the product so far and I’ve been using it mostly with a Turtle Beach PX21 Headset along with the EarForce DSS surround decoder via the optical connection.


Recently I decided to take make the move towards Hi-Fi stereo and Dolby Headphones so i got myself a pair of 600 ohm Open headphones (Beyers DT990) since they were on sale in Canada (NCIX.com).

I also bought an amplifier (Objective 2 amp from JDS LABS) since I read online that 600 ohm headphones require amplification.


Later on I found out that the eClaro analog output is supposed to drive 600 ohm.


I was wondering if there is any risk of damaging the eClaro or my Headphones if I plug the O2 amplifier in the analog output so i contacted HT Omega and this is their answer :


As you well know, there is a headphone exclusive output and also multi-channel I/O cable output for front.


1. Exclusive headphone output. It provides amplified signal.  Therefore, you can connect your DT990 headphone directly. For using this connector, please DO NOT connect Objective 2 amp.


2. Front Output using.

You can use Front output (Green cable) of  multi-channel I/O cable (Its a wierd D_sub cable splitter) For this case, you can DT990 headphone thru Objective 2 amp. Please connect front output to Objective 2 amp for amplifying signal.

Both outputs are effected by front opamp.


It seems i either purchased the O2 amp for nothing or i could still use it with the wierd D_sub cable. Is there a real risk if i amplify the already amplified headphone jack ?


Is there a sound quality drop if i use the D_sub connector ?


Here are the stats for the card as reference :

C-Media Oxygen HD CMI8788 Audio Processor: main engine of CLARO

1pcs 24-bit/192kHz AK4396VF :
(120dB-part spec.) DAC for front channel output. and 1 pcs 24-bit/192khz CS4362 DAC for 6ch playback)

Headphone Output - High fidelity stereo headphone driver by buffer circuit. And it also applies to Front Panel Audio output, delivering crisp, clean music to the listener. Experience hi-fi stereo without the need for an external amplifier.


Again, sorry for the wall of text and i hope you guys can help me out.


post #2 of 6
I don't understand. Why are you against using the line outs on the multi-output cable? That will give you the best sound for using the O2.
post #3 of 6
Thread Starter 

I'm not against using it, i was actually wondering if its the same sound quality since its the first time i see a D_sub cable. I'm used to RCA, 3.5mm or TOSlink / optical.


I think i just had my mind set to use the headphone jack since i thought it was the highest quality. When the HT Omega rep told me i should not plug an amp on the amplified jack i was just glad i didnt use it prior to asking some questions since i could have damaged my amp or the headphones...


I guess you answered my question in the simplest way :)


I'll try to O2 plugged into the D_sub cable. I'll try to grab a Modmic 4.0 when its available so i'll have to use the D_sub for the Mic input anyway.

post #4 of 6
Originally Posted by Zarkas View Post

I'm not against using it, i was actually wondering if its the same sound quality since its the first time i see a D_sub cable. I'm used to RCA, 3.5mm or TOSlink / optical.

No worries. It will work great smily_headphones1.gif

Think about how narrow in width the board is on your card, and you'll see they just couldn't design it with those standard connections and have the card have that narrow profile.
post #5 of 6
Thread Starter 

While this thread is still fresh, i might as well ask a question for future reference.


While checking reviews and blogs about the DT990 and O2 amp, i came upon some PC speaker system reviews and the Swan M50w caught my eyes.


Regardless of the system or brand, if i was to buy a set of PC speakers, how would i connect them if im already using the D-sub multi-channel I/O for my O2 amp and headphones ?


I guess the amp would have to go so i could use the headphone output + D-sub and the card will auto-mute the speakers when the headphones are in.

post #6 of 6

Not necessarily.

I'm not sure about the capabilities of your eClaro are, if it can send stereo signal through more than one line out. If it can, then you'll connect your devices independently straight from the soundcard.

If not, you can put a Y splitter from the line out of your soundcard, and that will send the same signal to both the O2 and the speakers.

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