Noise Cancelling vs. Normal with AMP
Jul 15, 2013 at 2:13 PM Thread Starter Post #1 of 2

anderwold1

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Just bought a laptop recently and am planning to travel a lot more in the future. I was looking for a good pair of headphones for my laptop and was doing some research. Originally, I planned to buy a ~$200 pair of headphones. However, I found that headphones of that price range almost always required an AMP and a DAC to work as intended. With that in mind, I thought to myself that I could get a ~$100 pair of cans and a ~$100 AMP and DAC combo. However, further research found that noise-cancelling headphones don't require amps at all!
 
My question now is: should I get a ~$200 pair of noise cancelling headphones or should I get a normal headphone + AMP and DAC combo? Which one would give better sound quality? Which would give me the best bang for my buck? Feel free to recommend brands while you're at it since I have not yet decided exactly what pair of cans and which AMP and DAC I'll buy; keep in mind that anything over $200-$250 is a bit pushing it for my budget.
 
Jul 15, 2013 at 3:08 PM Post #2 of 2

Zashoomin

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Hello,
 
If you are planning on traveling a lot you will want closed back headphones or noise canceling which I think you already know already.  Also about the DAC/Amp situation, you don't "need" it.  It would sound better with and amp and dac but in my opinion I think for the best bang for you buck you should just get a pair of headphones be it closed or noise canceling.  You can always upgrade and get an amp/dac later.  If you are on a plane a lot though honestly I would go with noise canceling. With that being said I think that the heaphones with the best noise canceling capability are the Bose QC15.  They might not sound the best but I would say that they cancel noise the best.  But they are a bit out of your price range.  Also other headphones you might consider that are noise canceling are UE 6000 and UE 9000.  
 
For closed I would go with Beyerdynamic DT770 or DT990.  The 770 is a bit more base heavy.  Also Audio Technica AD900x. 
 
Hope this helps
 

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