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Best DAC/Amp for Sennheiser 650 Headphones ? (Budget: Around 500 $CA)

post #1 of 7
Thread Starter 

Well, see the topic :)

 

I currently have an Asus Xonar Essence STX, but looking for something else.

 

Thanks

post #2 of 7

Well your sound card will do just fine as a dac. I suggest getting a tube amp like the bottlehead crack to contrast the "solid state" amp on the sound card. 

post #3 of 7
Quote:
Originally Posted by Aldem View Post
 

I currently have an Asus Xonar Essence STX, but looking for something else.

 

If all you really use this audio setup for is music (and basic gaming and Internet videos), then just get an external headphone amplifier to connect to the RCA outputs on the Essence STX.

Not sure what external headphone amplifier to recommend, but you can ask here.

http://www.head-fi.org/t/197776/sennheiser-hd650-appreciation-thread

You can also change the three op-amps (operational amplifiers) in the Essence STX (I went with AD797BRs ($55)).

 

I myself just replaced my Essence STX with the Audio-GD NFB-15.32 external DAC/amp, $255+shipping.

Comes with dual DAC chips.

http://www.audio-gd.com/Pro/Headphoneamp/NFB1532/NFB15.32EN.htm

 

Also check out the NFB-11.32, $340+shipping

http://www.audio-gd.com/Pro/Headphoneamp/NFB1132/NFB11.32EN.htm


Edited by PurpleAngel - 4/23/14 at 4:42pm
post #4 of 7
Quote:
Originally Posted by cheneric View Post
 

Well your sound card will do just fine as a dac. I suggest getting a tube amp like the bottlehead crack to contrast the "solid state" amp on the sound card. 


+1, the Crack is one of the most beloved, if not THE most widely beloved tube amp for the 650's. Add in the Speedball upgrade, and you might even have some money left over for tubes... not too sure of what CA pricing is going to be.

post #5 of 7
Thread Starter 

I was thinking on getting the Schiit Valhalla. Would that 100 % use the power od my 650 if used like this:

 

DAC     - Asus Xonar Essence STX

Amp     - Schiit Valhalla

Phones - Sennheiser HD650

 

I want something that would help to reduce the veil a little, and that would add a little treble. Also, the soundstage is very important.

 

Thanks

 

Alan

post #6 of 7

I am not the world's biggest HD650 fan (in fact, I don't like it very much), but nonetheless I would concede to the fact that the pairing it makes with WA6 was exceptional. It may be a bit above your budget, but trust me it's worth it.

post #7 of 7
Quote:
Originally Posted by Aldem View Post
 

I was thinking on getting the Schiit Valhalla. Would that 100 % use the power od my 650 if used like this:

 

DAC     - Asus Xonar Essence STX

Amp     - Schiit Valhalla

Phones - Sennheiser HD650

 

I want something that would help to reduce the veil a little, and that would add a little treble. Also, the soundstage is very important.

 

Thanks

 

Alan


I think you will LOVE that combination. It will reduce the veil more than a little, tighten up the bass, everything you wanted.

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