direct into speaker outputs
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Rnm4

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When I bought my Naim Nait 3 years ago, I also got a device by Rega that allows one essentially to plug a headphone jack in a small housing directly into the speaker outputs of an amplifier (Nait has no jack). Since it is such a pain to switch out speaker cord with this device, and since I have a crossover built in to the Nait that diverts extreme low Hz signal (<50Hz) to a sub, I have not much used the Rega device. Figuring that the low signal would not get much response from my SR-80s anyway, I hooked the thing up last night. Not bad, but not that impressive either, and certainly no match for my loudspeakers.

So here’s my question. What’s up with this Rega device and others of its kind (assuming there are such)? How does it work? A proper headphone amp will sound better, right? (I hope so, as a PPX3S67N one is on the way!
) Surely there are more reasons to get a head amp than just not wanting to switch out speaker cables now and then. Dedicated head systems wouldn’t even have to involve that. Why then? And how much and what kind of improvement should I expect? Aren’t some cans (AKG K1000’s maybe?) designed to work with such a device?

Fill me in, and thanks!
 
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Rnm4

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I gather that the device is a resistor. So why don't those work well, and what and how much improvement will my many $ for the amp get me pover the nait plus the jack ith resistor. It's not like there aren't lots of $ in the path upstream of that resistor designmer to make the signal coming out really good!!

Feedback, please!
 
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chillysalsa

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Well, I'm not familiar with the exact model you have, but usually it is a simple resistor network to simulate the correct load for your amp and limit the current or voltage sent to the headphones.

This is not the best solution because headphones have a variety of impedances and thus the black box device from Rega may not be optimized. You need to have the correct impedance matching and proper current to supply the Grados because they are low impedance.

A good headphone design will be optimized to deliver those requirements to your headphones, so it will have low output noise and stable current supply in the appropriate voltage range.
 
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daycart1

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You bring up a real chestnut, rnm4! I have one of these devices...it was made by "Moretto" as an impedencer--the Moretto head amp was designed for 300 Ohm cans and the device makes it compatible with Grados at 32 Ohms.

My thingy also has speaker wire posts for listening to headphones from a speaker amplifier. I am embarrassed to say that I have never checked it out, though I am still curious about it (tonight? Nahhhh, too busy).

Another device like this is made by Antique Sound Labs (UH4, I believe--it is reviewed here at Head-fi). Reviews tend to say stuff like "it preserves the characteristics of the speaker amp".
 
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bookkeepers_son

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I use an ASL UHC-SE adapter with a Naim Nait2 or Rega Mira. The reviewer was right about preserving the original sound of the amplifier. It does. Nait2 into Alessandro MS2s sounds particularly impressive.
 
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