Denon DA-300 USB Dac and B&W P7's
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barrysheen

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Hi all
 
Good to be here, there seems to be a lot of good info to be found.
 
I recently purchased both the Denon DA-300 USB Dac and the B&W P7 Headphones. My audio source is an iMac. My question is around volume. The Dac volume runs from -95dB to 0 dB but I seem to need the volume between -20dB and -5dB to reach what I would usually describe as mid to approaching high volume. The iMac volume is set to around 90% I would say.  No hearing problems either.
 
I'm not used to volume expressed in dB so am not sure if this is as it should be. I read that an ideal volume for listening for clarity is -80dB (only one person's opinion I know) but I hear virtually nothing between -95dB and -85dB, with it becoming just a very low whisper at -80dB.
 
Does this sound correct or is something not quite right with my setup?
 
Many thanks in advance.
 
Barry
 
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Nicolas L

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Sorry for intruding, but how do you like the Denon amp? It's price and quality seems really attractive.
 
Regarding your question, I've seen people bypass the internal player (e.g. iTunes), and use Audirvana instead?
 
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Prophet293

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  I recently purchased both the Denon DA-300 USB Dac and the B&W P7 Headphones. My audio source is an iMac. My question is around volume. The Dac volume runs from -95dB to 0 dB but I seem to need the volume between -20dB and -5dB to reach what I would usually describe as mid to approaching high volume. The iMac volume is set to around 90% I would say.
 
Are you connecting the DA-300 to your Mac via USB or optical toslink? USB connection should surrender all volume control to the DA-300 so your volume setting on the Mac should be irrelevant.
 
Regarding dB, yes -20dB to -5dB sounds about correct. My optimal dB for my Denon 7100 on the DA-300 is about 15dB and this headphone is 25ohm, so your B&W P7 which is 22ohm should be about the same, each to their own. I have the P5 that's 27ohm and I usually take it to about -10dB on the DA-300.
 
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czcsfb

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-33dB to -45dB is the range that I have to adjust when connecting it through USB to my laptop. Have not tried optimal yet but from what I found 300USB is only 55 mW 32 Ω, well, lower output power than many other competitors in the market.
 
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Prophet293

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  from what I found 300USB is only 55 mW 32 Ω, well, lower output power than many other competitors in the market.
 
that's because it's not designed for high impedance headphones, you can always wire it up to a stand alone amp. Anyway, what headphone are you using on the DA300?
 
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czcsfb

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that's because it's not designed for high impedance headphones, you can always wire it up to a stand alone amp. Anyway, what headphone are you using on the DA300?
mainly X1, Q701 and D600 right now. I received the unit 2 days ago but I have to say that I really like its performance, that's exactly what I needed. 
 
I thought there might be something wrong with my DA300 volume control, and that's why I found this post. Well, everything seems fine now, I didn't plan to connect my high impedance headphones to DA300 but still its power of output kind of surprised me. 
 
Anyway I am a big fan of Denon's audio product, really enjoy DA300's performance.
 
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Prophet293

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  mainly X1, Q701 and D600 right now. I received the unit 2 days ago but I have to say that I really like its performance, that's exactly what I needed. 
 
I thought there might be something wrong with my DA300 volume control, and that's why I found this post. Well, everything seems fine now, I didn't plan to connect my high impedance headphones to DA300 but still its power of output kind of surprised me. 
 
Anyway I am a big fan of Denon's audio product, really enjoy DA300's performance.
 
Denon's headphone line-up all have low impedance so there's no need for them to go really high on their DAC/amps. Like I said, just connect a stand alone amp to the DA300 if you need to power your high impedance headphones, the DAC inside the DA300 is the same DAC Denon uses in their flagship SACD players, it's probably the best out there atm.
 
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czcsfb

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Denon's headphone line-up all have low impedance so there's no need for them to go really high on their DAC/amps. Like I said, just connect a stand alone amp to the DA300 if you need to power your high impedance headphones, the DAC inside the DA300 is the same DAC Denon uses in their flagship SACD players, it's probably the best out there atm.
 
Yeah, very glad most of my favorite headphones are designed to be low impedance.
 
For the next, like you said, that's what I am planning, connecting to a stand alone amp if necessary. Thank you!
 
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