A recent epiphany I've had..looking to the future
Sep 5, 2009 at 5:30 AM Thread Starter Post #1 of 15

SoupRKnowva

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Ive been reading this forum for several years now. I pay close attention to what most of you say, ask for suggestions even. Till now the only gear ive bought is a set of ety er6i's that i dont really use anymore, found out that cans are more comfortable for my ears. And then i bought a pair of Audio Technica ATH A900's that i like. Bought them for the soundstage for use in gaming, but ive found i like them alot for music as well. I also play alot of Rock Band. I have a pioneer SE DIR800C that i have been using for its dolby headphone implementation. I used this for all my gaming and Rock band. Then one day i thought what if i turn off all the processing on this thing and just use it as my amp. So i did, and the sound quality did go up noticeably, so i kept doing that. Then i started listening to music more out of my laptop, since all my music is on there. I just plugged the headphones straight into my Macbook Pro, and i realized it sounded like **** compared to my speakers running off my Yamaha DSP A1 receiver. I realized i could run optical from my MBP to the dir800 and use it as my dac and amp. This also got me noticeable gain in sq. Then i started reading on here some more about cd quality compared to my mp3's and about having a good source. So i figured using my Blu ray player for transport to my dir800 would increase also in quality, which it did. This is when i started noticing that i the amp in the 800c wasnt the best, running the cd's to it, i knew they werent sounding as good as they could. So im thinking everyone is raving about the audio gd compass, maybe i should get one?? At this same time i was digging through my whole room looking for something when i happened upon the 1/8 to 1/4 inch adapter for my ATH900's, and i see that my receiver has a 1/4 HP out on it. Now this isnt some new pos receiver with awful amps, this beast is from 1998 and weighs upwards of 60 pounds, its know as one of the better integrated amps ever for hometheater use. So i think hmm..this must have better amps for my hp's then that pos 800c. And also this is when i remember that id read that the DAC's in my Pioneer BDP 51fd blu ray player on the two channel outs were supposed to be really good ( wolfson 8740's) so then i run audio from the two channel outs on the pioneer using it as my transport and using those, by comparison, awesome dacs, into the multichannel ins of me yamaha receiver so that it doesnt touch the audio just amplifies it. And right now im marveling the the quality of the audio im getting from my headphones
atsmile.gif


Not only did i want to share my journey with you all, but im curious about something. What would benefit me the most on my next upgrade? Would a standalone dac help? or im looking at a set of AKG 702's? or would a standalone HP amp help the most? Im just wondering cause it seems like my receiver has plenty of oomph to power almost anything. Or as i said earlier would a compass benefit me alot? since the dacs are supposed to be so good in the 51fd? and it just doesnt seem like the tiny little compass could be as good as my ginormous receiver...

sorry if i rambled but i wanted to get it all out, and i didnt know where to put this, but since my DSP A1 made the biggest difference i thought in my upgrades that it would go into the amps section

thanks for any input in advance
Soup
 
Sep 5, 2009 at 8:37 AM Post #2 of 15

Uncle Erik

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You absolutely want to upgrade your headphones at this point. That will give you the biggest increase in sound quality.

And you'll probably come around to buying the rest sooner or later.
evil_smiley.gif
But for now, go get the headphones you want and give them a run in your current system. High end headphones will make you very happy.
 
Sep 5, 2009 at 9:03 AM Post #3 of 15

oqvist

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X2 headphones certainly. But well as mentioned if you start it´s hard to end the upgrade quest
smily_headphones1.gif
 
Sep 6, 2009 at 5:02 AM Post #4 of 15

SoupRKnowva

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Thanks for the recommendations guys
smily_headphones1.gif
i figured going with the new headphones, AKG K702's, would be my best bet. But im still wanting a new amplifier as well. I know i dont want tubes, i want SS. Single ended, dont ever plan on going balanced. for around 500 dollars what do you guys think would be the best choice? i might be able to stretch up to 750 if you think its worth it. And i want to make sure its better than my reciever is doing now, cause im pretty impressed
 
Sep 6, 2009 at 5:53 AM Post #5 of 15

AtomikPi

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For wire-with-gain amplifiers around $500ish, the m3 and gs-1 are both good options. Honestly, you'd be better off with spending all of your budget on headphones since your amp and dac are probably good enough. Used HD800's are going for 1200-1300 which isn't much more than a 750 amp + 250 hp's. Just an option, but I think the SQ you'd get from that would be much, much greater than 500 amp + 250 hp's. And of course, do your reading and make sure they would suit you (they have definite similarities to the K702's but better them in literally every category - they're a bit of a cross between a K701 and HD600 + a step up in refinement).

Make sure you read up on the K702's - they don't have much bass which ends up disappointing many of their buyers. If you think your ety's have enough bass though, you'll be fine.
 
Sep 6, 2009 at 6:17 AM Post #6 of 15

cswann1

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Yep. A decent quality AV receiver can also be a fine HP DAC/amp.

Since I got my D7000's, I've been listening to them from the HP out of my Denon receiver that is fed a digital signal from my CD player by optical cable. I was prepared to spend upwards of a thousand dollars on amplification to make sure my new cans gave me all they had. After a few days of listening to this set-up I decided I was perfectly happy and didn't need to spend any more.
 
Sep 6, 2009 at 6:50 AM Post #7 of 15

SoupRKnowva

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yeah, i like the bass on the etys and on my a900's which everyone else seems to think isnt good enough. Im not a huge bass head, i just like tight and fast bass, specially since i listen to alot of metal. i hadnt really thought of getting a set of hd800's but it seems like a good idea, and then maybe down the road get a good dac since everyone says garbage in garbage out. though skullguise has a twisted pear audio opus for 450 shipped in the FS section that i was pondering

http://www.head-fi.org/forums/f43/fs...locker-442409/

thanks for the input guys
smily_headphones1.gif
 
Sep 6, 2009 at 8:13 AM Post #8 of 15

Uncle Erik

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For good solid state amps in your budget, I like the Gilmore Lite, M^3, CK2III, EC/SS, and the PreSonus Central Station. I've owned or own all of those except for the EC/SS, but have listened to one. All of them are great amps, and the Central Station also has a terrific DAC and preamp functions.
 
Sep 6, 2009 at 9:16 AM Post #10 of 15

SoupRKnowva

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Quote:

Originally Posted by FallenAngel /img/forum/go_quote.gif
That DAC you linked to is absolutely amazing! I told him he was dropping the price too low.
tongue.gif
It's a great DAC, would highly recommend.



i actually just sent him a pm asking him more about the innards of the thing, i think i might want it...haha, but then again who wouldnt if its as good as you say it is. Using the dac though, should i get a transport too? or do you think digital coaxial out on the blur ray player will be good enough?

i know im all over the place, but thats just cause i dont really know what i want, trying to find the best value for sound quality, and that dac seems like a good deal that i should jump on, wait another month to get new hp's, maybe even hd800's
 
Sep 6, 2009 at 10:47 PM Post #12 of 15

SoupRKnowva

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Quote:

Originally Posted by FallenAngel /img/forum/go_quote.gif
A decent transport (as in your existing player) should suffice.

Skip the HD800, at least until you've went to a meet and compared them yourself to a few others.
wink.gif



well thats good to know that my current blu ray player should be good as a transport
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saves me some money

what others would you suggest? i really like transparency and detail, my favorite speakers are magenpans.
 
Sep 7, 2009 at 2:36 AM Post #13 of 15

AtomikPi

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Quote:

Originally Posted by FallenAngel /img/forum/go_quote.gif
A decent transport (as in your existing player) should suffice.

Skip the HD800, at least until you've went to a meet and compared them yourself to a few others.
wink.gif



I agree that sampling is best, of course, but given that the OP likes ety's and possibly K701's, I find it unlikely he would not be happy with them. There is always of course the option to buy used or buy new with a return option.
 
Sep 7, 2009 at 6:55 PM Post #14 of 15

mrarroyo

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If the deal w/ skullguise does not go through, then another good option would be an used Oritek w/ the amp module. There is on on the for sale forum for under $500, having owned one I can say that it is a very good performer and at under $500 a major deal.
 
Sep 7, 2009 at 8:21 PM Post #15 of 15

SoupRKnowva

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Quote:

Originally Posted by mrarroyo /img/forum/go_quote.gif
If the deal w/ skullguise does not go through, then another good option would be an used Oritek w/ the amp module. There is on on the for sale forum for under $500, having owned one I can say that it is a very good performer and at under $500 a major deal.


do you think thats better or worse than the opus? just curious cause ive never heard either, but they're both the same price and the opus is just a dac, no headphone amp.

soup
 

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