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Old 06-14-2009, 04:26 PM
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morfic morfic is offline
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Originally Posted by WalkGood
Not really sure what you don’t agree with, the players that sacrifice sound statement, the proper encoding of tunes or the headphones you use statement o_O

I think I misread your encoding statement

Mostly I disagree with saying an amp should transform weaker players into more powerful portables. An amp is something you buy to fix a specific problem (typically that the impedance of a pair of headphones is too low or too high for a particular DAC), not something thats useful (or even desirable) in general.
Considering most portable players are based on what the manufacturer saw as "best possible compromise" you already start out with a "problem" when you get your DAP.
You can live with the choices they made or let an amp help you "iron them out", for example have the DAP's battery last longer than if it had to drive the low impedance phones it came with or we bought.

Originally Posted by WalkGood
But the statements I made above make perfect sense to me and I’m not talking about pairing with a $20.00 cheap amp.

Yeah I realize that, but most people on these forums seem to be. Check out that HD-201 thread on the forums today. That guys getting awful advice from everyone. The thread should have begun and ended with "you have a 25 dollar pair of headphones that are pretty easy to drive, you don't have to care about things like amps".
The amp may come with bass boost or xfeed to alter how things sound for you. I bought some Super.Fi3 for example, then debated between amp and new phones, i picked up the phonaks and they were great, but after picking up a good amp i tried both on them, while i enjoyed them with either IEM, the Super.Fi3 benefit more from the amp due to their 13ohm, current loving design.
So amp before new phones can make sense...i think had i heard the S.Fi3 with amp first, i may neve rhave picked up the phonaks o_O.

Originally Posted by WalkGood
Either way, you’re entitled to your own opinion, but if you get a chance to use a good amp you might think differently.

I'd never let the way something sounded change what I recommend on these forums because I don't believe my opinions are generally useful or interesting enough to other people to be worth sharing. I mostly just work with facts and measurements like RMAA tests, which are the best way to look at amps and impedance anyway. And of course those are extra nice since inexperience or odd taste on my part doesn't change the result
I love graphs too, but in a subjective field like audio they do not tell the whole story, RMAA would show you higher distortion for a tube amp than a SS amp, would you then say a SS amp is better because of that?

Originally Posted by WalkGood
Finally, I see you quoted me fine, but you did miss the most important point I made:

BTW, I didn't stick this thread, only suggested it ...

Of course, you're absolutely right. I just don't like the idea of implying that an amp is a good fix for bad sound. Its usually not the best solution.
I got the suggestion a good amp on good phones and a good player can give you the "last 5%", not that i would dare call dfkt a liar, it's just that it too is way too general, it can be the last 5-15% to me at least un RMAA proven, subjectively enjoyed.
I got into it based on expecting the last 5% and got nice suprises of finding some things improve more.

  • Make tunes louder or "amplify"
  • Improved clarity at lower listening levels
  • Add a new dimension or color the sound
  • Improves/increases the dynamic range from high to low
  • Increases bass response, punch or thump
  • Adds dynamics to the tunes
  • Provide more calirity at lower volumes
  • Drive higher impedance headphones
  • Helps drive headphones, which in theory should help DAP’s battery life
1) Check
2) Check
3) Double check!
4) Check ("Oh wow, that was always there, i never noticed it before")
5) "Oh yeah" Check
6) See 4 (Remove?)
7) See 2 (Remove?)
8) HD600 on a D2 thanks to XM5 anyone? Check!
9) Check (Especially low impedance, current sucking phones)

Note: I like taking pictures, there is no "real/right" to WB/tone/contrast, there is only "What i like". Such is audio.

This thread should be more about what a amp could be to someone who is new to portable amps or headphone amps in general.

Oh yeah:

Plus a headphone amp can not put back what is not all ready missing.
Fix that incorrect double negative there before i send your highschool english teacher after you, asking for your diploma back
("Plus a headphone amp can not put back what is already missing." i think would refer to bad encoding/bad dac/player)
This is something that really needed addressing aside from the 2 seemingly repeating bullets.
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