Decent and Affordable DAC/AMP (HD600)
May 15, 2015 at 1:44 AM Thread Starter Post #1 of 12

heyletshifi

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Hello Head-Fi Members!
 
I picked up a pair of HD600s for $229 the other day and they are about to arrive at my door step. I kind of realized they were 300 ohms after I bought them, which is not a problem for now since I have an old "integrated stereo amplifier" around. I am going to see if that works to drive the headphones for a short while before I step up my game into the audio enthusiast world.
I am currently using the in/famous M50s/LE on my computer and have enjoyed the improved sound quality so far. I have had them for 2 1/2 years and I have broken them twice since then and got them fixed both times under warranty.
 
I have taken a look at some DAC and AMPS, but some of them look kind of "cheap" to me despite being highly recommended and they are bit pricey. I have also looked at a few discrete sound cards which appear to be more affordable, but the reviews on those types are lacking. I am looking towards mainly buying an amp and will most likely purchase a dac to go with it. However, I do not wish to exceed the price I paid for the headphones on both the amp and the dac. Obviously, I won't be taking the HD600s outside of my home so portable solutions are not desired.
 
Please comment on your recommendations on dac and amps that pair well with HD600s. (I heard somewhere, tube amps make these headphones shine) As well as you personal experiences with your recommended product and/or the HD600s.
 
Thank you for taking a look at my thread and I am looking forward to reading your responses!
 
May 15, 2015 at 1:52 AM Post #2 of 12

H20Fidelity

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Do some research on Schiit magni / modi combo. And also look into Aune T1. Despite HD600 300ohm impedance they're quite easy to drive within decent listening levels, however a dedicated amp Is what they require.
 
May 15, 2015 at 2:13 AM Post #3 of 12

Lorspeaker

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darkvoice336SE.....MASSDROP offers it ever so often. (200bucks? )
https://www.massdrop.com/buy/dark-voice-366se/talk
 
i bot cheap NOS tubes from ebay...10 to 30bucks should do, they last for years.
 
May 15, 2015 at 10:25 AM Post #4 of 12

mylica

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Hi heyletshifi,
 
We are in the same situation.  Just bought HD600 as well.  Using my unused citypulse USB DAC/AMP.  Sounds wise, I am still not satisfy, sounds very dark with bloated bass at higher volume.  I suspect the citypulse amp is not that good, as the product is more focusing on DAC.
 
I am looking for some DAC/AMP as well so lets combine our question here. 
 
Seems Vali get some good recommendation. 
 
 
Cheers
 
May 15, 2015 at 11:15 AM Post #6 of 12

mylica

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Budget?

I am in the crowd that likes a tube amp with my HD600 (I have a Schit Valhalla), but you can still get really good sound out of a Magni (1, 2, or 2U).

 
I have bookshelf setup, purely on tube amp.  I like that lush mid vocal.  So, i might be leaning towards tube amp as well.  However, i have doubts here.  HD600 is def darker compare to others, will putting tube amp make it even worst?  I doubt magni can do better than my current citypulse.  Btw i am using printer usb cable as of now to connect my pc to dac. ;p
 
Budget is somewhere to 500 for me
 
Thanks
 
May 15, 2015 at 12:25 PM Post #7 of 12

joe

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I've been enjoying the ALO PanAmDAC/amp (with the Gateway) with my HD600's lately. It doesn't take up a lot of desk space, and I've really been enjoying it. I've been enjoying it with a lot of varying music, and I haven't found any drawbacks for my listening preferences. I've been bouncing my head for the last 45 minutes or so listening to the combo. (The last few tracks were Die Antwoord's "Fatty Boom Boom", Lourde's "Royals", Pearl Jam's "Yellow Ledbetter", and The Streets' "Let's Push Things Forward".)
 
May 15, 2015 at 1:42 PM Post #8 of 12

heyletshifi

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Budget?

I am in the crowd that likes a tube amp with my HD600 (I have a Schit Valhalla), but you can still get really good sound out of a Magni (1, 2, or 2U).

Would prefer to keep the costs under $229 for both a dac/amp. I don't want to spend more on these units than the headphones themselves, but if there is good reason to spend more than I will certainly consider it.
 
 
  Hi heyletshifi,
 
We are in the same situation.  Just bought HD600 as well.  Using my unused citypulse USB DAC/AMP.  Sounds wise, I am still not satisfy, sounds very dark with bloated bass at higher volume.  I suspect the citypulse amp is not that good, as the product is more focusing on DAC.
 
I am looking for some DAC/AMP as well so lets combine our question here. 
 
Seems Vali get some good recommendation. 
 
 
Cheers

Hi there mate,
 
Good luck finding a suitable amp/dac unit that can suit your tastes. It seems you have a bit more of an experience to this than me, so it looks like you know what you are looking for. On the other hand I am relatively new to this, so it looks like have some experimenting to do.
 
Cheers
 
 
  I've been enjoying the ALO PanAmDAC/amp (with the Gateway) with my HD600's lately. It doesn't take up a lot of desk space, and I've really been enjoying it. I've been enjoying it with a lot of varying music, and I haven't found any drawbacks for my listening preferences. I've been bouncing my head for the last 45 minutes or so listening to the combo. (The last few tracks were Die Antwoord's "Fatty Boom Boom", Lourde's "Royals", Pearl Jam's "Yellow Ledbetter", and The Streets' "Let's Push Things Forward".)

 
Hey Joe,
 
The ALO PanAmDac/amp seems like an interesting unit, however I can't seem to find it anywhere. I just see a few used ones on Amazon for $500 and not much else. Please let me know the price of the unit and where I could pick one up. By the looks of it, the unit is discontinued but I am unsure.
 
May 15, 2015 at 2:12 PM Post #9 of 12

superjawes

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Would prefer to keep the costs under $229 for both a dac/amp. I don't want to spend more on these units than the headphones themselves, but if there is good reason to spend more than I will certainly consider it.

I must have missed where you said this earlier...well then the Magni 2 and Modi 2 are right in your price range, and you have options to mix and match depending on what you want. You have Uber options, optical modi options, or--if you wanted to try tubes--Vali comes in at $119. I don't have experience with this one, but I have heard some praises of Vali/HD600 pairings. I personally use my Magni 2 Uber with my HD600, and it is very good. I like my Valhalla a bit better, but that's also a lot of power and heat that I don't need (which is why I'm usually using the Magni).

The nice thing about Magni, though, is that it has a ton of power for such a small amp, so it should fare pretty well with any headphone, provided you aren't using something really inefficient like the HE-6.
 
May 15, 2015 at 2:49 PM Post #10 of 12

joe

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The ALO PanAmDac/amp seems like an interesting unit, however I can't seem to find it anywhere. I just see a few used ones on Amazon for $500 and not much else. Please let me know the price of the unit and where I could pick one up. By the looks of it, the unit is discontinued but I am unsure.

 
It appears that the page is down on ALO's web site, but it is right on their front page. I'm not sure if it's discontinued or not, but I've seen them in the FS forums periodically.
 
May 21, 2015 at 12:27 AM Post #12 of 12

inthere

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Aune T1 is an amp AND a DAC for $169
 

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