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Beyerdynamic Headzone H1 Virtual Surround Sound Base Station

post #1 of 4
Thread Starter 

Hello Head-Fi :) I'll keep it brief.


I'm looking for opinions, and or any hands-on experience you folk have on the Beyerdynamic Headzone H1 Virtual Surround Sound Base Station.


I plan to drive my Sennheiser HD800 with this amp, which I'm sure you know is a mercilessly honest headset as to the quality of its sources, from beginning to end. While I am near certain more suited amps are available for the price of the Headzone H1 ($900 USD), the reason I am drawn to this DAC is due to its highly reputable virtual surround sound decoding, alongside seeming to be a solid general usage amp.


The reason the virtual surround simulation is so important, is because I use my HD800 for gaming. I perfectly understand I went (way) overboard purchasing the HD800 for gaming. Though on that note, I do not regret it at all. I have tested the AD1000X, PS1000, and LCDX, along with less note-worthy headphones looking for sound stage precision, comfort, and overall sound signature pleasing to me. I actually really enjoyed the Grado PS1000, and for music may actually have chosen that headset, but as far as precision is concerned, the HD800 is King from my (short) testing. I truly enjoy these headphones, and their performance in games with lossless audio files like Battlefield 4, is simply unbelievable, or well, VERY believable lol.


I understand a high-end sound card, mixed with the right program, could supply good virtual surround sound, but I would like a full-sized amp to properly drive these rather power hungry headphones.


For now, my goal is to supply the best virtual surround sound to my HD800, while maintaining the high quality source standards the HD800 demands, that last part is why I am not interested in cheap units such as the Astro Mixamp, or Creative HD Recon.



TLDR: Please share opinions, and experience of the Beyerdynamic Headzone H1 Virtual Surround Sound Base Station.





Edited by MultiKillGaming - 5/10/14 at 9:57pm
post #2 of 4

Hey MultiKillGaming,


I wish that someone would have answered your question, and if you happen to buy this please report back on your findings.


I use the Beyerdynamic DT880 250ohm and right now my setup doesn't involve virtual surround. (as I am missing a single Toslink to Mini Toslink M/M 5.0mm cable for my Turtle Beach Ear Force DSS1, which is very similar to Astro Mixamp)


I do use an old (1977) Marantz 2230B receiver as my amp, the sound it processed is awesome in many ways but I do miss surround capabilities for fps gaming.


I was previously considering some sort of lego'ish setup of combining my EarForce with an Asus Essence One Muse Edition, but am too drawn to the Headzone H1.


TLDR: if you, or anyone else here, actually bought the HZH1 and is playing with it.. please report back, feedback would be greatly appreciated 

post #3 of 4

If you're playing on the PC there's no reason to get the H1. Get a Soundblaster Z and spend the H1's money on a good DAC/AMP instead. SBX HRTF is the current best solution for gaming and movies and does what CMSS-3D and Dolby Headphone don't. Lacking the "Tin can sound" of CMSS-3D and compromising a bit of space for sounding best out of all solutions and not having that hall effect all the time like Dolby Headphone. 


SBZ -> HRTF over optical out -> DAC/AMP. You'll get better SQ, low impedance dead silent outputs.

I am using SB ZxR -> Anedio D2 -> HD 800 and it's gaming heaven. 


If you're playing on consoles only then I can only suggest a used H1 which maybe costs half the MSRP or better wait and see how that upcoming 300$ Turtle beach device turns out. Supposedly it features Dolby Headphone X and works on all current platforms with additional sofware for the PC.

post #4 of 4

Hey Fegefeuer, 

Thanks for the response!


Yes, I am using a PC but I forgot to mention that it is a laptop pc, 

I have the first gen of MSI's GT70 (3rd Gen i7 + GeForce 680M) also known as one of the sub variations of the GT70 0NE as seen here:


This laptop does not feature full optic output port, firewire, express card slot, thunderbolt.

However it does come with hdmi\displayport\headset 3.5mm jack(+line in, microphone 3.5mm jacks)


and thanks to another forum user (PurpleAngel, at http://www.head-fi.org/t/722806/connecting-xonar-essence-one-to-beyerdynamic-headzone#post_10630123) I learned that my headphone jack also doubles up as a mini-toslink yet it doesnt\cant carry the 5.1 chanles that I desire (more info on this is avilable at the last post by PurpleAngel at the linked post)


He recommended that I'll go for an Xonar U3 + tosslink adapter and connect that to NFB-11 via it's optical input and connect my DT880 to it.







With this information in mind (I use a pc laptop without proper native optical port), how would you go about obtaining 5.1 (or 7.1) virtual surround for my DT880?

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