So I've just got my first good pair of headphones (Shure SE530s) and I love em already...but I'm using my laptop and my ipod. The sound is great but from what I read around here I'm sure it could be a lot better.
There are a few different routes I'm investigating and I'd like to go with the most economical one, I'm not going to upgrade everything I've got. The headphone jack on my ipod is breaking so I'm wondering if a Cowon is good enough to run the headphones unamped. The other option is to get a fiio e11.
Basically it boils down to the question "Would I get better sound quality out of an unamped Cowon or an ipod touch amped with a Fiio E-11 or variant?".
The Fiio E11 option is better because iPod Touch line-out ( through dock ) is very clean and more detailed than HP jack and the sound quality will improve much more ( on both laptop and iPod Touch with E11 ).
hmm, actually while i found the se530 to improve with an amp, it wasnt a huge improvement, also the latest touch and iphone have a very high quality HP out. basically if for use solely with se530 i feel you will get a better improvement from an upgraded dac, so out of the laptop with e11 will be a larger improvement than amping the touch lineout. so on that note i would say go for one of the ibasso dac/amps perhaps if its within your budget. this isnt the case with all iems, but with se530 that was my experience.