I'm new, and would like some advice on basically a universal portable amp/dac.
As the title says, budget $200, though I can stretch it a bit if I feel I would really gain something.
I just bought a Beyerdynamic DT770 (80 Ohm), mostly for use with my pc.
I have it hooked up via onboard toslink -> Denon AVR-1708 -> Headphone jack, and have no complaints.
The sound via the onboard audio directly to my headphones wasn't that good. Even static noise while nothing was playing.
The Denon is huge though, and I'd prefer to replace it with something smaller.
I do want at least the same level of quality, and for it to be able to power fullsize headphones, also ones that are a bit harder to drive in case I buy another.
Since the Denon was fairly affordable at the time (2008, <400 euro), and I'm sure technology has moved on, I assume this goal should be easily achieved within budget?
But why no desktop dac/amp you say?
Well, I plan on finishing my education after having worked for a couple of years, and will probably be using public transport alot, and spending time away from home.
I'll mostly carry and use a laptop + android device (htc one x currently).
I'd like to be able to at least use it with the laptop, and preferably also with my android device via USB OTG.
What kinds of music do I listen?
Lots. (Classic) Rock, Metal, some Jazz but not very often, Folk, Punk, lots of vocal stuff that I cant really put to just one category, purely instrumental stuff (piano, violin), movie soundtracks, and I'm sure I'm missing quite a few categories.
I generally add some bass in my equalizer over what could be considered neutral, but not too much. I like bass, but don't want to overdo it.
What did I find?
- FiiO stuff
- Audioengine (D1 specifically, though D3 is appealing)
- iBasso (Several models)
- Audioquest Dragonfly
Should I expect more from a larger device? (D1 vs D3 for example, or D-Zero vs D42)
Also, I do actually still consider a desktop amp (Schiit $200 combo), and buy a really affordable DAC/AMP later for mobile use.
Would the sound from the Schiit combo actually be better than any of the aforementioned portable devices?
Say ~ $300 for both, which would I be better off with?
- $200 schiit combo + $100 portable, or
- $300 portable, and also use it as a desktop device
Sorry, lots of questions for just 1 post. Would love to hear your input though!