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Took the plunge on some new headphones and ordered the HD6xx today from A2A. By all reports, a no-brainer.

 

Now, what to drive them with..

Edited by elisix_
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I own a pair of 6XX’s and use with two different DAC/amp combos depending on where I am in the house. One is a D50s + JDS Atom, and the other is a Benchmark DAC 3 B + HPA4. Both sound amazing and have

Topping DX3 Pro for $329 is a bargain for your situation (DAC+headphone amp). RCA out to your speakers and use the Topping to control volume. https://www.audiosciencereview.com/forum/index.php?th

The Drop x THX AAA 789 amp is worth looking at as your HP amp in that case. It's excellent at the price point. As others have already said, the Topping DACs are strong for their price - hard to go wro

8 hours ago, elisix_ said:

Took the plunge on some new headphones and ordered the HD6xx today from A2A. By all reports, a no-brainer.

 

Now, what to drive them with..

What do you currently have?

What is your budget?

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4 hours ago, Bengineer said:

What do you currently have?

What is your budget?

Well I’m just setting myself up at home and I’m in the market for either the KEF LSX or Kanto TUK to sit on my desktop.

 

If I go with the TUK I may just run from the built in headphone amp for a while. LSX however I’ll need a dedicated DAC/AMP.


Budget between $500-$1000 for both DAC/AMP I’d say, while I dip my toe in the water. 

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39 minutes ago, elisix_ said:

Well I’m just setting myself up at home and I’m in the market for either the KEF LSX or Kanto TUK to sit on my desktop.

 

If I go with the TUK I may just run from the built in headphone amp for a while. LSX however I’ll need a dedicated DAC/AMP.


Budget between $500-$1000 for both DAC/AMP I’d say, while I dip my toe in the water. 

Kanto Tuk is way too hyped up.
The bass is really thin, you definitely should demo it before you buy.

If you are not putting the speaker too close, you should demo the active JBL LSR 305P MK2 ($400 for the pair.)
Really great value for the money.

And then save up and , spend the money on a really good dac.
RME Adi-2 fs dac is an amazing dac and the headphone amp with new dac AKM4493 chip is dead quiet and more than powerful enough for the 6XX.

Edited by delphi17
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Yeah ok. Go the TUK, LSX more small room type speakers than nearfields. ^^ RME is $1600 on a good day. So depends how he wants to stretch that budget :S

 

As for a DAC/AMP combo. Fairly healthy budget.

 

Popular choices are a Schiit Stack, which is actually pretty good now. The Modi/Magni, or Asgard. Schiit Jotunheim can have a inbuilt DAC too. Lot of value here.

 

Topping has a few models under $1000 that work great too. DX7 Pro for example. And standalone some good things like a D50S DAC.

 

JDS Labs has a great little all in one called the Element 2. Which is great value.

 

Audio GD have things like the NFB 11.38 that are good.

 

Fairly saturdated market, but the above are fairly well loved for good reason. Aesthetic and other functions will play a part, pre-outs etc.

Edited by Bengineer
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May be, if it is, heaps more options!

 

The RME 4490 version pops up used for around $1000. THAT is a serious option if you find one and push the budget to your max there.

 

But working in a "desktop use, HD6XX, neat, $500 ideally" type scenario. My pick is JDS Element 2. Love the look, volume knob, sound and dac are solid.

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2 hours ago, delphi17 said:

Sorry, I thought it's $500-$1000 for both dac/amp  , as in $500- $1000 for each... my bad. 

The Drop x THX AAA 789 amp is worth looking at as your HP amp in that case. It's excellent at the price point. As others have already said, the Topping DACs are strong for their price - hard to go wrong with any of them (IME)

 

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33 minutes ago, PassionForSound said:

The Drop x THX AAA 789 amp is worth looking at as your HP amp in that case. It's excellent at the price point. As others have already said, the Topping DACs are strong for their price - hard to go wrong with any of them (IME)

 


Just a note, with Topping is that it's a Chinese company manufacturing in china, with office in Warsaw.

While the RME ADI 2 FS is made in Germany by a German company.

The durability and also resale value also will need to be taken into account.


Of course the RME ADI 2 FS is actually should be compared to the Topping D90 which is an excellent DAC too.

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2 hours ago, delphi17 said:


Just a note, with Topping is that it's a Chinese company manufacturing in china, with office in Warsaw.

While the RME ADI 2 FS is made in Germany by a German company.

The durability and also resale value also will need to be taken into account.


Of course the RME ADI 2 FS is actually should be compared to the Topping D90 which is an excellent DAC too.

That's an interesting one. I think resale value of Topping should be quite strong as it's probably better known than RME even though the RME may be the better product (I haven't tried one of their products yet)

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Thanks for all of the detailed feedback and recommendations. Much appreciated.

 

I went to A2A today to take a look at some headphone DAC/AMP's and very quickly landed on the Schiit stack - specifically the Modi/Magni which sit around the $500-$600 range paired. 

 

As I am still undecided on the TUK vs. LSX (LSX auditioned last week at Lifestyle Store) and I i'm only just researching the desktop DAC/AMP options, I bought the new iFi HipDAC for $249. It looks great and the reviews have been positive. 

 

I figured that regardless of whether I go with the TUK with its built in headphone DAC/AMP, or go the LSX and pair a desktop DAC/AMP (Shiit stack), I can play around with my first DAC and keep it for my office when we return post COVID.

 

It'll give me some time to learn a little, listen a little and then decide on a desktop DAC/AMP setup for the 6XX at home while giving me an option at work for the 6XX if I choose to transport them daily. 

 

I would love to hear more opinions on the LSX/TUK. I absolutely love the look of the TUK. Please let me know what you think. 

Edited by elisix_
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  • 2 weeks later...

JDS Labs Atom amp, they are releasing an Atom DAC soon or an El Amp II and El DAC II. I love JDS, they have incredible customer support. A genuine company that deserves the support.

Edited by Farpun
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  • 3 weeks later...

I own a pair of 6XX’s and use with two different DAC/amp combos depending on where I am in the house. One is a D50s + JDS Atom, and the other is a Benchmark DAC 3 B + HPA4. Both sound amazing and have to say the cheaper combo is 95% of what the benchmark setup is, at a fraction of the price.  I do like both with some EQ via Roon. 

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  • 4 weeks later...
On 22/05/2020 at 9:12 PM, DubbyMcDubs said:

JDS Atom

Hi, may I ask where you bought JDS Atom from? Their website? I couldn't find any seller in Australia. Thanks.

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On 20/04/2020 at 1:01 AM, elisix_ said:

Took the plunge on some new headphones and ordered the HD6xx today from A2A. By all reports, a no-brainer.

 

Now, what to drive them with..

Also ha. The rabbithole began on April 20th, 2020. RIP elisix's wallet.

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8 hours ago, ttwin said:

Hi, may I ask where you bought JDS Atom from? Their website? I couldn't find any seller in Australia. Thanks.

Yes direct from their website. 

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1 hour ago, Bengineer said:

Also ha. The rabbithole began on April 20th, 2020. RIP elisix's wallet.

So since April 20th.

  • Sennheiser HD6XX
  • iFi HipDAC
  • Focal Elegia
  • RME ADi-2
  • Audio GD D28.38
  • Sennheiser HD800S

Jesus.. lol ?

 

And today I was debating Z1R, Arya, Utopia, Stellia......

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13 hours ago, elisix_ said:

And today I was debating Z1R, Arya, Utopia, Stellia......

That's gonna hurt the bank account....

 

Hope you're enjoying all your headphones. Your collection is already more impressive than mine...

 

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4 hours ago, 626tomp said:

That's gonna hurt the bank account....

 

Hope you're enjoying all your headphones. Your collection is already more impressive than mine...

 

I’ll probably over buy and then edit back down. 
 

Can only listen to one at a time right? Well, one at a time at each location. And, I suppose one at a depending on your mood.. this could go on.. 

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Just like USB Reclockers and Filters, I stack my headphones for best results.

 

Slip on the HD6XX, then the Verite over the top. Best of both worlds.

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4 hours ago, Bengineer said:

Just like USB Reclockers and Filters, I stack my headphones for best results.

 

Slip on the HD6XX, then the Verite over the top. Best of both worlds.

Just need to slip some iems on underneath then you're good to go.

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  • 1 month later...

To think that this was my first post/thread on here (see signature, now 3 months later).  @peppy @Bengineer ? 
 

Rounding this out, when I do use my HD6XX, mostly for YouTube general purpose, I use my RME and have an EQ profile loaded which brings them to life. 

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7 hours ago, elisix_ said:

To think that this was my first post/thread on here (see signature, now 3 months later).  @peppy @Bengineer ? 
 

Rounding this out, when I do use my HD6XX, mostly for YouTube general purpose, I use my RME and have an EQ profile loaded which brings them to life. 

Would you say you have an impulsive personality :P ?

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5 minutes ago, petetherock said:

I just bought the HD 650, and my iMac drives it pretty well. What is it that is lacking right now? 

It's plugged directly into the iMac?

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2 minutes ago, Bengineer said:

It's plugged directly into the iMac?

Yep... with an adaptor of course.. but it's good enough.
I have a Marantz NA 11S1 and the PM 11S3, with decent amps for the cans built in, but I don't think I find much lacking... 

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If you're happy with it, that's all that matters.

 

The Headphone output on all three of those devices is unlikely to be driving the HD650 adequately. They actually need a fair bit of juice. You may get sufficient listening volumes, but still be under-driven. If you have any mates with dedicated headphone amps ask them to drive, HD650 is a bit veiled/muffled on a lot of reasonable gear, on low power stuff especially so.

 

What you'll notice when properly driven is a clearer sound, less congested. Bit of an EQ tweak helps again. Good DAC helps a little bit again.

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I actually did use a dedicated amp before, courtesy of a friend who owned some fancy A&K gear. But I guess my ears weren't sharp enough to find the difference...

If you have a read of the old reviews of the Marantz kit, the headphone stage is not too shabby... cheers. 

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By the way, in case you have friends in Asia, and you’re still on the lookout for the actual 650, they are on sale in Singapore for $369... not too shabby a price I’ll say...

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1 hour ago, petetherock said:

Oh lastly, I'm playing at 15-20% of the volume range of my iMac and I find it pretty loud already, so I guess I'm easy to please :)

Well you asked what you're lacking. The answer is you wouldn't be properly, and cleanly, driving the headphone.

 

If you knew you were happy with the set up.....why ask? ?

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