do I need an external amp for my AKG-k501's?
Mar 21, 2006 at 7:31 AM Thread Starter Post #1 of 4

macmacox

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I've just picked up a pair of AKG-k501's and upgraded my soundcard in my system to a TerraTec DMX 6 fire pro. Would this plus a cmoy be enough to drive the 501's ok or is there an amp (not a kit please!) for under $120 that would drive these headphones better ?
 
Mar 21, 2006 at 1:43 PM Post #2 of 4

NiceCans

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I had the K501's and found them to be rather power hungry. The bass tends to be a bit light for many folk's taste, particularly when unamped. You can use them unamped, but you are not hearing them to their potential.

A Cmoy will drive them, as will several other of the lower priced amps. Most people seem to agree that these will make a noticable difference in the sound quality.

For best results, there needs to be a 'synergy' between the amp & headphones, and I am sure there are others here who can guide you better as to which amp works best with K501's.

Of course there are higher priced amps that have the potential to drive them closer to their potential.
 
Mar 21, 2006 at 4:49 PM Post #4 of 4

Bones13

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Need being such a subjective word. Most will agree with me in saying that most headphones will sound better when they have an a amp. Whether or not you NEED it is quite an individual choice.

In my mind, there are low frequencies (bass) that are under-represented when coming from an underpowered amp. While the iPod does reasonably well, most folks use the bass booster EQ setting when using cans directly off the iPod. I think it takes more burst current to run the less efficient cans to produce the good bass sound. I am pretty sure that the small lithium battery in the ipod, which is also running all the ipod services, just cannot produce the juice to run the low frequency sound enough to match the mid/high frequencies.
 

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