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NAD C316 as headphone amplifier?

post #1 of 10
Thread Starter 

I own the NAD C316 amplifier, it has headphone out. However looking at the datasheet, it has an awful high output impedance of 68 ohms. Currently I don't have any headphones(broke my dt770) and I'm using it for my speakers.

 

Does anyone have experience with this amplifier being used as an headphone amp?

Should I look for a new headphone amp?

Would I be able to get any noticeable difference if I bought, lets say, the Schiit Magni or Maverick Audio A1? 

Headphones I've been looking at buying; AKG Q701, AKG K612, HD595, Fidelio X1, maybe DT880/DT770 (to replace my broken ones).


Edited by Primanatic - 5/18/14 at 3:59pm
post #2 of 10
Generally, the idea is to have output impedance of 1/8 that of the headphones. Otherwise, the amp might skew the frequency response of the headphones a little.

Personally, I wouldn't worry about it until after you get your new headphones. It will certainly work for now, and the headphone you chose might affect what amp you decide to go with.
post #3 of 10
Quote:
Originally Posted by Primanatic View Post
 

I own the NAD C316 amplifier, it has headphone out. However looking at the datasheet, it has an awful high output impedance of 68 ohms. Currently I don't have any headphones(broke my dt770) and I'm using it for my speakers.

 

Does anyone have experience with this amplifier being used as an headphone amp?

Should I look for a new headphone amp?

Would I be able to get any noticeable difference if I bought, lets say, the Schiit Magni or Maverick Audio A1? 

Headphones I've been looking at buying; AKG Q701, AKG K612, HD595, Fidelio X1, maybe DT880/DT770 (to replace my broken ones).

 

I would think all the headphones you have listed, besides the 30-Ohm Fidelio X1, would do ok plugged straight in to the NAD C316.

I would say to get the Beyer DT880s (250 or 600).

The impedance issue might give headphones like the 62-Ohm Q701 or 50-Ohm HD595 a slightly bloated bass, which might be considered an improvement as those models might be considered a little bass light, by some.

The 120-Ohm K612 Pro might be considered the best bang for the buck, get prices for used ones on ebay.

 

Besides getting headphones, maybe a good DAC to feed the NAD?

post #4 of 10
Thread Starter 

I'm going to use the headphones for gaming, probably the reason for why I'm looking at the more "open" headphones compared to the DT770.

I don't have any DAC currently. I was thinking about buying an audio card to do surround simulation as DSP, then maybe forward it to an external DAC. Or just get an external DAC capable of doing it all.

 

Anyway I'm from Europe, going to NYC in a few weeks, so I was looking to pick up some headphones while there. For example Q701 seems to be half the price compared to Europe.

 

What makes you suggest the DT880?

post #5 of 10
Quote:
Originally Posted by Primanatic View Post

Anyway I'm from Europe, going to NYC in a few weeks, so I was looking to pick up some headphones while there. For example Q701 seems to be half the price compared to Europe.

I think someone posted recently that B&H Photo in NYC has a huge headphone selection to try out in store. You might check them out. They are well known for being a good, reputable vendor for online sales, so good place to shop as store anyway if I'm wrong.
post #6 of 10
Quote:
Originally Posted by Primanatic View Post
 

I'm going to use the headphones for gaming, probably the reason for why I'm looking at the more "open" headphones compared to the DT770.

I don't have any DAC currently. I was thinking about buying an audio card to do surround simulation as DSP, then maybe forward it to an external DAC. Or just get an external DAC capable of doing it all.

 

Anyway I'm from Europe, going to NYC in a few weeks, so I was looking to pick up some headphones while there. For example Q701 seems to be half the price compared to Europe.

 

What makes you suggest the DT880?

 

A Asus Xonar DX or D1 sound card would provide you with Dolby Headphone surround sound and a CS4398 DAC chip :)

I've only listened to some of the headphones on the ones you've listed, I own the DT880s (250 & 600) and I think they make good all around headphones.

Plus as the DT880s have a high impedance, they are better able to work with a source with a 68-Ohm impedance.

post #7 of 10
Quote:
Originally Posted by cel4145 View Post


I think someone posted recently that B&H Photo in NYC has a huge headphone selection to try out in store. You might check them out. They are well known for being a good, reputable vendor for online sales, so good place to shop as store anyway if I'm wrong.

 

+1, I like B&H Photo's customer service.

post #8 of 10
Thread Starter 

I just checked B&H. DT880 and k701 are higher priced than here in Europe.... So much for lower taxes, guess they're reaping in profits.

post #9 of 10
Quote:
Originally Posted by Primanatic View Post

I just checked B&H. DT880 and k701 are higher priced than here in Europe.... So much for lower taxes, guess they're reaping in profits.

Some of the brands are reasonably priced in Europe from what I can tell.

Still good to go to B&H and listen to a bunch of headphones where you can compare them back and forth smily_headphones1.gif
post #10 of 10
Quote:
Originally Posted by Primanatic View Post
 

I just checked B&H. DT880 and k701 are higher priced than here in Europe.... So much for lower taxes, guess they're reaping in profits.

 

Do you know anyone in NYC that maybe can buy you headphones, used off eBay?

 

I've seen the AKG K612 Pros selling for a really good price in Europe.

http://www.thomann.de/gb/akg_k_612_pro.htm

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