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A good portable headphone amp for this headphone <<< $200?

post #1 of 11
Thread Starter 

I was looking at the Meridian Explorer USB DAC, but then read something about needing to have low impedance headphones in order to receive its full power. The impedance on the headphones I'm purchasing is 32Ω (V-MODA M-100). I'll probably be getting an amplifier too to pair with the portable DAC, was looking at the Mont Blanc E12 from FiiO.

 

Oh yeah it's all just starting to get really damn confusing because I'm also reading about Windows sound drivers and such, how you need to have certain drivers installed if you're using the Meridian? I have a Windows 8.1 PC.


Edited by lostsoundman - 11/21/14 at 8:38am
post #2 of 11

Are you planning to use this as a portable rig?  If so I would look for something else as the Meridian is primarily meant to be used with a computer.  Even if it works with a smartphone the form factor would not make it stackable with a phone.

post #3 of 11
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Za Warudo View Post
 

Are you planning to use this as a portable rig?  If so I would look for something else as the Meridian is primarily meant to be used with a computer.  Even if it works with a smartphone the form factor would not make it stackable with a phone.

 

Yeah my laptop, I just see that the desktop amps are way expensive. Was thinking maybe the common O2/ODAC stack? I was also looking at the Cayin C5, looks beautiful. 

post #4 of 11
Quote:
Originally Posted by lostsoundman View Post
 

I was looking at the Meridian Explorer USB DAC, but then read something about needing to have low impedance headphones in order to receive its full power. The impedance on the headphones I'm purchasing is 32Ω (V-MODA M-100). I'll probably be getting an amplifier too to pair with the portable DAC, was looking at the Mont Blanc E12 from FiiO.

 

Oh yeah it's all just starting to get really damn confusing because I'm also reading about Windows sound drivers and such, how you need to have certain drivers installed if you're using the Meridian? I have a Windows 8.1 PC.


Why not just picking a Fiio E17 (USB DAC/Amp and also portable Amp)?

M-100 are easy to drive, E17 have plenty of power for them.

 

Best Luck!

post #5 of 11
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Me x3 View Post
 


Why not just picking a Fiio E17 (USB DAC/Amp and also portable Amp)?

M-100 are easy to drive, E17 have plenty of power for them.

 

Best Luck!

 

What do you think is better for it the E09K or the Mont Blanc E12?

post #6 of 11
Quote:
Originally Posted by lostsoundman View Post
 

 

What do you think is better for it the E09K or the Mont Blanc E12?


Hey! Those are very different amps.

 

Fiio E09K is a very powerful desktop amp that don't work well with low impedance headphones like V-Moda M100.

It's a good match for power hungry headphones with impededances over 80 Ohm.

 

Mont Blanc E12 is a portable powerful amp, very good, but not needed for very sensitive headphones like V-Moda M100.

It can output more than 20 times the power you need to make M100 unhealthy loud.

 

E17 is a much better investment. It has tons of power for M100s and when plugged via USB it can also work as a very fine sounding DAC.

post #7 of 11

Quote:

Originally Posted by lostsoundman View Post
 

 

Yeah my laptop, I just see that the desktop amps are way expensive. Was thinking maybe the common O2/ODAC stack? I was also looking at the Cayin C5, looks beautiful.

Since it sounds like you are able to spend $300-400 (Meridian Explorer is at least $150), I would just get a decent desktop dac/amp unless space and portability are needed.  Schiit sells excellent products that can easily fit in your budget.  There are plenty of other options as well.

 

The Cayin C5 is a excellent portable amp, but it's not that practical to use as a desktop amp.

post #8 of 11
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Me x3 View Post
 


Hey! Those are very different amps.

 

Fiio E09K is a very powerful desktop amp that don't work well with low impedance headphones like V-Moda M100.

It's a good match for power hungry headphones with impededances over 80 Ohm.

 

Mont Blanc E12 is a portable powerful amp, very good, but not needed for very sensitive headphones like V-Moda M100.

It can output more than 20 times the power you need to make M100 unhealthy loud.

 

E17 is a much better investment. It has tons of power for M100s and when plugged via USB it can also work as a very fine sounding DAC.

 

I listen to loud music. Example, I had the ATH-M50's (one side blew after about 8 months) that were powered with the Magni/Modi stack. Without amping them, they sounded bad. Too quiet, with a lack of bass and a dull sound overall. I was told before that the Magni has just enough power to not blow the headphones at full volume (I always listened full volume, lol hope this wasn't bad for the headphones).

 

I guess I just need an amplifier that won't blow the M-100's, since they are quite an investment for me. You really think just the E17 is enough? Lots of people say to pair it up with a separate amp. Definitely looking at the E12.

 

Also I need both a DAC and amp, can the E17 work as both at the same time?


Edited by lostsoundman - 11/21/14 at 1:25pm
post #9 of 11

If you still want to be able to hear things in 10-20 years I would be wary of how loud you crank up your volume.  In this case you really don't need any amp to get the M100 to get loud enough to blow your ears out, never mind the Magni with its 1.2W max output.

 

see:

http://www.head-fi.org/t/723464/hearing-safety-and-ear-health-thread-a-diary-of-a-ear-health-noob

post #10 of 11
Quote:
Originally Posted by Za Warudo View Post
 

If you still want to be able to hear things in 10-20 years I would be wary of how loud you crank up your volume.  In this case you really don't need any amp to get the M100 to get loud enough to blow your ears out, never mind the Magni with its 1.2W max output.

 

see:

http://www.head-fi.org/t/723464/hearing-safety-and-ear-health-thread-a-diary-of-a-ear-health-noob


+1

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by lostsoundman View Post
 

 

I listen to loud music. Example, I had the ATH-M50's (one side blew after about 8 months) that were powered with the Magni/Modi stack. Without amping them, they sounded bad. Too quiet, with a lack of bass and a dull sound overall. I was told before that the Magni has just enough power to not blow the headphones at full volume (I always listened full volume, lol hope this wasn't bad for the headphones).

 

I guess I just need an amplifier that won't blow the M-100's, since they are quite an investment for me. You really think just the E17 is enough? Lots of people say to pair it up with a separate amp. Definitely looking at the E12.

 

Also I need both a DAC and amp, can the E17 work as both at the same time?

Yes, E17 is more than enough. And yes, when plugged to a laptop via USB it works as both DAC and AMP simultaneously.

post #11 of 11
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Za Warudo View Post
 

If you still want to be able to hear things in 10-20 years I would be wary of how loud you crank up your volume.  In this case you really don't need any amp to get the M100 to get loud enough to blow your ears out, never mind the Magni with its 1.2W max output.

 

see:

http://www.head-fi.org/t/723464/hearing-safety-and-ear-health-thread-a-diary-of-a-ear-health-noob

 

Ever heard of Steve Meade and what he does with audio? I appreciate it, though.

 

 


Edited by lostsoundman - 11/21/14 at 3:49pm
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