My crappy soundcard drives SE530s better than total bithead...the hell?
Jul 24, 2008 at 6:40 AM Thread Starter Post #1 of 2

Riggaberto

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Why does my creative sound blaster audigy mobile (or whatever) on my laptop make my new Shure SE530 IEMs sound waaaaay better than my total bithead? More clarity, definition, less distortion, deeper, clearer, bass, just way better...I'm in shock.

The amp vastly improves my Grado SR225s, and my Sennheiser HD280s, which is why this is so confusing for me. I thought it was the low impedance, but the Grados are even lower.

It's just kind of annoying to have to switch my setup depending on what headphones I want to use.

Thoughts, suggestions?
 
Jul 24, 2008 at 7:26 AM Post #2 of 2

Torula Yeast

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I, as an owner of the shure 530s and grado 125s, suspect it is because your laptop's soundcard is geared more for cheaper buds that don't excel in bass and treble, and thus accentuate these qualities in your 530s. Not to say that the 530s sound a thing like tinny earbuds, but that they are eq'd to emphasize midrange, which they do beautifully. Only, they lack detail and punch in trade.

The 225s (and, presumably, your Senns), on the other hand, deliver midrange and detail and punch sufficiently that your bithead synergizes better with them than the midrange-heavy Shures.

I have a HeadRoom MicroAmp, and while I love to hear my 125s or GS1Ks from them (OK, generally the latter), I find my 530s a disappointment comapred to hearing them out of my laptop. Whereas with the Grados, I don't let them near my laptop for music.
 

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