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Why Amp?

Discussion in 'Portable Headphone Amps' started by hentai11, Sep 28, 2009.
  1. Hentai11
    I usually use IEMs unamped with mp3 players, which drive them adequately. When I use an amp (I have an old Go-Vibe and a Fiio E5) I have a hard time telling what difference it makes. They're both sitting in a drawer.

    Am I screwing something up, putting them in backward or something?
     
  2. Scott_Tarlow
    Some IEM's benefit others dont. The E5 is useless pretty much, never tried the govibe.
     
  3. battosai
    For "hissing" mp3 players like my Sony A818, amping cleans the sound, there is no hiss anymore with my Ibasso D2 and D10, and it adds to punch, attack, soundstage to my UM3X, so for me amping FTW!
     
  4. labrat
    Delete
     
  5. Ntropic
    I'm pretty sure the hissing has got to do something with... ohms. And stuff. Mismatching.

    In any case, I like using my E5 to give my IEMs more of a bass kick. Bus engines like to drown out bass notes, and even without the bus, I find the bass lacking on my SF3s.

    Then there's battery life. If input resistance on an amplifier is real high, that means current draw will be low on the player, right? I know the E5 has a battery life much longer than a Clip, so it's good for me. For somebody with a Cowon player? Not so much; but you don't really need an amplifier with Cowon players anyways.
     
  6. krmathis Contributor
    Not all external amplifiers make a difference, and not all portable ear-/headphones benefit that much from one.
    So many variables...
     
  7. shigzeo Contributor
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by krmathis /img/forum/go_quote.gif
    Not all external amplifiers make a difference, and not all portable ear-/headphones benefit that much from one.
    So many variables...




    some amps are no more than boosters, aiding volume, but some have good, hard circuitry which lessens the load of the digital audio player. most players cannot drive low ohm iems and earbuds. what happens is that bass goes south because they deplete their cap outs. when driving an amp, the headphone should make no load on the headphone out. a good amp will be able to drive the phones the way the dap cannot: no bass roll off, better stereo separation, no hiss, better extension, and lower distortion. a bad amp will not help anything at all.
     
  8. dissembled
    So what happens if the source improves very little with amplification while the headphone itself improves markedly?

    Some people hear a difference amping their UM3xs. With the X Walkman though, I hear very little difference (when coupled to my Pico amp/dac). Is this due to the fact that my source is unaffected by amplification?
    Thanks.
     
  9. Hentai11
    Thanks, folks. I guess the moral of this tale is: "If it ain't broke..."
     

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