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Sound card for Beyerdynamic DT 770/80 (pref USB); Gaming purposes

post #1 of 14
Thread Starter 

First post here, hope it's in the appropriate sub-forum! Anyway, here goes.

 

Yesterday I decided to get a new headset, and spent the day researching various gaming headsets from infamous manufacturers such as Logitech, Corsair and others of equally ill repute.

Today I realised the wisdom in proper headphones and a separate mic, which led me to this forum. I've since decided on the Beyerdynamic DT 770/80 Pro. The reason for this is primarily the closed design; I really like the idea of isolating myself within the music I'm listening to, or the game I'm playing. Gaming will be the primary use, but nothing competitive so the larger soundstage and surround accuracy of the DT 990 doesn't seem to be worth sacrificing the closed design for (I hope I got that right, new to the terminology). Also hoping the 80 ohm impedance means they will work fairly well with my HTC One; I'll confirm this at the store before purchasing. 

 

What's left for me to decide on is a sound card/DAC/amp. Truthfully I'm not entirely sure what is required for the headset to perform, but the idea of virtual surround is pretty exciting (never experienced that before, very curious); I guess a sound card from Creative/Asus/xx will be required for that effect? I'd also prefer if that sound card were connected via USB; it'll make unplugging the headset easier when I take it with me, and furthermore, the cable would otherwise have to route across my desk and reach the back of my PC on the floor, which will necessitate a cable length of ~9 ft. Quite frankly I'd rather contend with a small box on my desk, if at all possible.

 

Would really prefer not having to pay more than $100 for the card; so far the Asus Xonar U7 and Creative Sound Blaster X-Fi HD both appear to fit the bill, but I've been unable to find forum posts of people using either one with the Beyerdynamic headphones - was hoping for some feedback with respect to compatibility and general sound performance of those two cards.

 

Hopefully all the required information is included in my post, otherwise ask and I'll try to answer as best I can.

Thanks in advance!

 

EDIT: Pretty set on Asus Xonar U7 and the Audio Technica ATH-M50X LE (blue ones). If anyone has specific feedback on my choice of either, that'd be greatly appreciated!


Edited by Freddy1765 - 6/15/14 at 7:21am
post #2 of 14

The Creative Labs Surround Omni 5.1 USB sound card might come with a more powerful headphone amplifier.

post #3 of 14
Thread Starter 

That's definitely worth looking into. Found a review, reading it now. Do you have any experience with this particular card? And what about 5.1 vs 7.1 surround? Any perceivable difference?

post #4 of 14
Quote:
Originally Posted by Freddy1765 View Post
 

That's definitely worth looking into. Found a review, reading it now. Do you have any experience with this particular card? And what about 5.1 vs 7.1 surround? Any perceivable difference?

 

I'm far from a "gaming" expert.

I'm guess(?) there is not much real support for 7.1.

I figure both the game and the sound card have to be 8-channel (7.1) for it to work.

I would think it would be easier (a little cheaper) for game makers just to do everything in 5.1 (6-channel)

But 7.1 does work well for marketing when you label a product "7.1".

 

I have zero experience using the Omni 5.1 (I prefer Asus Xonar internal cards).

post #5 of 14
Thread Starter 

I'm reading about the Asus Xonar U7, which is the other USB card I mentioned in my original post. 

According to the reviewer it's a "small USB powered audio card with all the ports and features you'd expect from an internal, discreet sound card, but in a tight little package."

So, I expect it would perform similar to Asus' internal cards. I'm not sure what to make of the different drivers mentioned in the review, though; I mean, Dolby HT4v, C-Media and Xear effects, none of that means much to me. With the internal card you're using, do you take advantage of the virtual surround? And if so, what kind of software do you use to enable it?

 

EDIT: I just found a 16 page thread on the Xonar U7 on the Computer Audio sub-forum, gonna browse through that for some answers.

Feeling pretty good about stumbling onto this site!


Edited by Freddy1765 - 6/15/14 at 7:22am
post #6 of 14
Quote:
Originally Posted by Freddy1765 View Post
 

I'm reading about the Asus Xonar U7, which is the other USB card I mentioned in my original post. 

According to the reviewer it's a "small USB powered audio card with all the ports and features you'd expect from an internal, discreet sound card, but in a tight little package."

So, I expect it would perform similar to Asus' internal cards. I'm not sure what to make of the different drivers mentioned in the review, though; I mean, Dolby HT4v, C-Media and Xear effects, none of that means much to me. With the internal card you're using, do you take advantage of the virtual surround? And if so, what kind of software do you use to enable it?

 

Dolby Home Theater V4 is Dolby's latest software.

C-Media is the company that makes the audio processor for Asus sound cards.

I know zero about Xear, never have had a need to use it.

The Xonar U7 comes with a nice DAC chip, the CS4398. it's also used on the Xonar DX/D1 and Creative Labs SB-Z & SB-Zx.

post #7 of 14
Thread Starter 

Sounds like a good card all around. I'm pretty close to pulling the trigger, but thankfully nothing can be done until after the weekend. That way I can go back and forth a few more times, thoroughly evaluating my options.

Thanks a lot for your feedback so far!

post #8 of 14
Quote:
Originally Posted by Freddy1765 View Post
 

Sounds like a good card all around. I'm pretty close to pulling the trigger, but thankfully nothing can be done until after the weekend. That way I can go back and forth a few more times, thoroughly evaluating my options.

Thanks a lot for your feedback so far!

 

Cool, put some deep thought into it.

 

Also check out the Audio Technica ATH-A900X headphones, I like them better then my DT770s.

I added Hifiman HE Velour ear pads to my A900Xs.

The A900X's are only 40-Ohms, easy for the HTC One to drive (Really easy for the U7 to drive them).

 

Good prices on used

http://www.ebay.com/itm/Audio-Technica-ART-ATH-A900X-Audiophile-Closed-Back-Dynamic-Monitor-Headphones-/201106622333?pt=US_Headphones&hash=item2ed2e3877d

http://www.ebay.com/itm/Audio-Technica-ATH-A900X-Audiophile-Closed-Back-Dynamic-Headphones-NEW-/231256028246?pt=US_Headphones&hash=item35d7eef456

http://www.ebay.com/itm/Audio-Technica-ATH-A900X-Black-Headsets-brand-new-never-used-distressed-box-/181432688310?pt=US_Headphones&hash=item2a3e3b1eb6

post #9 of 14
Thread Starter 

Wow, those are expensive! In my native country of Denmark there's apparently only one e-tailer that carry them, and at over twice the cost of the DT-770s! 

Thanks for the suggestion, but I've never felt comfortable buying things on ebay, and for the sake of hygiene I'd rather get headphones that are unused.

Do you use your Dt-770s for music or gaming? I would be interested in hearing your thoughts on them.

 

EDIT: Huh, went on amazon.co.uk to check those ATH-A900X, there are two pairs that are seemingly identical, but one costs £128 and the other £339. Can your discerning eyes tell the difference between them?

 

http://www.amazon.co.uk/Audio-Technica-ATH-A900X-Audiophile-Closed-Back-Headphones/dp/B005TCZIQA/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1402806101&sr=8-1&keywords=Audio+Technica+ATH-A900X

http://www.amazon.co.uk/Audio-Technica-ATHA900X-Hi-Fi-Headphones/dp/B006V386UG/ref=sr_1_2?ie=UTF8&qid=1402806101&sr=8-2&keywords=Audio+Technica+ATH-A900X


Edited by Freddy1765 - 6/14/14 at 9:33pm
post #10 of 14
Thread Starter 

I checked those AT headphones out, but only one e-tailer carries them here in Denmark and they're very expensive, more than twice the price of the 770s. Also not a fan of ebay or used headphones, but thanks for the suggestion!

Slight development in terms of the 770s; I realised the 80 Ohms don't have the coiled cable that I really liked, so I need to find a different pair, as lugging 10 ft of cable around when im on the move is a dealbreaker. Alternatively I could go for the 250 Ohm ones, but they probably won't work with my smartphone, and I'm not really interested in having to use an amp in between the phone and the cans. Do you have any experience with Audio-Technica ATH-M50X Blue? The removable cable seems a nice touch; can have a longer one for my PC and a shorter for music when traveling. I'm perusing the thread dedicated to them at the moment, but some insights would be great.

 

EDIT: Oh, double post - thought the other one got deleted due to containing a link to Amazon. My bad mods!


Edited by Freddy1765 - 6/15/14 at 7:24am
post #11 of 14
Quote:
Originally Posted by Freddy1765 View Post
 

I checked those AT headphones out, but only one e-tailer carries them here in Denmark and they're very expensive, more than twice the price of the 770s. Also not a fan of ebay or used headphones, but thanks for the suggestion!

Slight development in terms of the 770s; I realised the 80 Ohms don't have the coiled cable that I really liked, so I need to find a different pair, as lugging 10 ft of cable around when im on the move is a dealbreaker. Alternatively I could go for the 250 Ohm ones, but they probably won't work with my smartphone, and I'm not really interested in having to use an amp in between the phone and the cans. Do you have any experience with Audio-Technica ATH-M50X Blue? The removable cable seems a nice touch; can have a longer one for my PC and a shorter for music when traveling. I'm perusing the thread dedicated to them at the moment, but some insights would be great.

 

I believe the ATH-M50Xs are considered an improvement over the ATH-M50s, but there should be other on Head-Fi that are better informed about the M50Xs.

 

Denmark?

Does that mean you spend your days playing Legos and listening to Aqua?

post #12 of 14
Thread Starter 

I'll visit the music store monday and listen to the various models, hopefully that will shed some light on things. Such effort!

 

Haha, LEGO was in fact my favourite pastime as a child (as is the case of every self-respecting dane!), although Aqua (and pop music generally) has never appealed to me.

post #13 of 14
Quote:
Originally Posted by Freddy1765 View Post
 

I'll visit the music store monday and listen to the various models, hopefully that will shed some light on things. Such effort!

 

Haha, LEGO was in fact my favorite pastime as a child (as is the case of every self-respecting dane!), although Aqua (and pop music generally) has never appealed to me.

 

More into Classical?

post #14 of 14
Thread Starter 

Actually, yes. Although I listen to a variety of genres, classical is definitely one of them. I'm very curious how (classical) music will sound on a good pair of headphones; my stereo system is not exactly high-end, although I did pay upwards of €2000 for the speakers and amplifier at the Hi-Fi store some years ago, so it's no slouch either. If a pair of €200 headphones blow it out of the water I may have a sudden onset of buyer's remorse!


Edited by Freddy1765 - 6/15/14 at 10:52am
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