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Sound card or Amplifier?

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Hello sound geeks..
I am going to purchase HD 800S headphone.
I am listening to musics using my PC, I like high quality audio and gaming using headphone, and i have now creative sound card AE-5 and HE 400i headphone.
So what you think guys, it's need to purchasing an amplifier over my sound card like Apollo Twin MKII maybe? or replacing my sound card with Asus Essence STX II? i need your advice please.
BTW i just remember something, i have IBasso DX90 if there is a way i can use it in the middle maybe, don't know just asking.

Thanks everyone
 
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I'd have to say the Apollo looks like the better of the two choices you've named but probrably the more expensive one too. Also desktop room is a consideration since it looks like the Apollo is external to the PC case, the Asus is like most any other soundcard in placement.

Personally I like the Apollo as a supplement to what you have already BUT what it amplifies is only as good as what it receives to amplify in the first place. If it's receiving crappy audio then it's amplifying crappy audio and that's simple enough to understand.

I'd get my sound quality how I'd want it first, then look into amplification of it as the next step of the process.
 
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Doesn't look too me like ae-5 has xlr output which you need for 800s.
 
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better sound card especially if you run high res audio and if you have money you could add amplifier
like the title sound card will process your digital audio into sound and amplifier will push the sound to the speaker or head phones

so for me better sound card and isolation from any interference
 
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My opinion is that the pc's only job when it comes to audio is to output it digitally, the rest is up to a dac and any other audio equipment that is not inside the pc.
 

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Hello sound geeks..
I am going to purchase HD 800S headphone.
I am listening to musics using my PC, I like high quality audio and gaming using headphone, and i have now creative sound card AE-5 and HE 400i headphone.
So what you think guys, it's need to purchasing an amplifier over my sound card like Apollo Twin MKII maybe? or replacing my sound card with Asus Essence STX II? i need your advice please.
Thanks a lot everyone
Long time. Dude, anyways Creative Labs have new Soundcards, you may want to look at HT Omega and Auzentech too.


Or E-MU
 
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Sound card DACs really aren't too bad these days, but once you get to the point where you're looking at DACs that on thier own cost as much as a sound card... the comparisons get much wider.

Just something to consider when looking at amps.

Conventional wisdom says output is only as good as source at best. But it also says when seeking better sound quality the order is trasducers > amplification > conversion.

So unless your dac is really pitifully bad, amp is the surest bet. Can always grab a DAC later.

Really depends on how good your current card is, how much you ultimately are willing to spend, and convenience factors.
 
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HT Omega and Auzentech too.
Or E-MU
HT Omega = near dead using Cmedia = no driver, last card Fenix in 2013.
Auzentech = totally dead, bankrupt
E-EMU = Dead. Label put on rebranded Creative headphones recently. They haven't released something we know it in years. Last E-MU 1212M PCIe showed up in 2013 and isn't available anywhere.

Update your stuff dude...
 
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I'd have to say the Apollo looks like the better of the two choices you've named but probrably the more expensive one too. Also desktop room is a consideration since it looks like the Apollo is external to the PC case, the Asus is like most any other soundcard in placement.

Personally I like the Apollo as a supplement to what you have already BUT what it amplifies is only as good as what it receives to amplify in the first place. If it's receiving crappy audio then it's amplifying crappy audio and that's simple enough to understand.

I'd get my sound quality how I'd want it first, then look into amplification of it as the next step of the process.
so you say take the asus card and add apollo is the best options?

Doesn't look too me like ae-5 has xlr output which you need for 800s.
i can use an adapter right? something high quality or maybe i need the amp. too

better sound card especially if you run high res audio and if you have money you could add amplifier
like the title sound card will process your digital audio into sound and amplifier will push the sound to the speaker or head phones

so for me better sound card and isolation from any interference
then sound card first

My opinion is that the pc's only job when it comes to audio is to output it digitally, the rest is up to a dac and any other audio equipment that is not inside the pc.
sure

Long time. Dude, anyways Creative Labs have new Soundcards, you may want to look at HT Omega and Auzentech too.


Or E-MU
Hello my friend how is goin, yeah long time ..
Ok i will see the new creative i hope it better than the asus

Sound card DACs really aren't too bad these days, but once you get to the point where you're looking at DACs that on thier own cost as much as a sound card... the comparisons get much wider.

Just something to consider when looking at amps.

Conventional wisdom says output is only as good as source at best. But it also says when seeking better sound quality the order is trasducers > amplification > conversion.

So unless your dac is really pitifully bad, amp is the surest bet. Can always grab a DAC later.

Really depends on how good your current card is, how much you ultimately are willing to spend, and convenience factors.
ok so creative card have DAC also asus too i think
HT Omega = near dead using Cmedia = no driver, last card Fenix in 2013.
Auzentech = totally dead, bankrupt
E-EMU = Dead. Label put on rebranded Creative headphones recently. They haven't released something we know it in years. Last E-MU 1212M PCIe showed up in 2013 and isn't available anywhere.

Update your stuff dude...
Yes drivers is the priority issues especially with new windows 1903 update

BTW guys I just remember something, I have IBasso DX90 if there is a way i can use it in the middle maybe, don't know just asking.
 
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Aquinus

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Doesn't look too me like ae-5 has xlr output which you need for 800s.
XLR is optional on these headphones.
BTW guys I just remember something, I have IBasso DX90 if there is a way i can use it in the middle maybe, don't know just asking.
The problem isn't having a DAC. The DAC just makes everything sound better, but it won't sound better if you can't hear it. The 800S are 300 ohm cans. You really need a headphone amplifier to drive a pair of cans like this. If you're spending over 1,000 USD on a pair of cans, I would highly suggest you not cheap out with the hardware driving it.

Edit: For reference, I have a pair of HD 380 Pros and I use a Fiio E17k Alpen 2 USB DAC and Amp with them.
 
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My initial question should be - do you really need $1000+ headphones if you wonder if you can use them with your "gaming" soundcard. You sure you're not just spending money because you can?
 

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If you use ibasso dx90 dac get a good amp
 
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so you say take the asus card and add apollo is the best options?
If you are deadset on the exact pieces you've named then yes, the Asus first then the amp.
 
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XLR is optional on these headphones.

The problem isn't having a DAC. The DAC just makes everything sound better, but it won't sound better if you can't hear it. The 800S are 300 ohm cans. You really need a headphone amplifier to drive a pair of cans like this. If you're spending over 1,000 USD on a pair of cans, I would highly suggest you not cheap out with the hardware driving it.

Edit: For reference, I have a pair of HD 380 Pros and I use a Fiio E17k Alpen 2 USB DAC and Amp with them.
ok can you tell me more about it? sure i want to get best sound quality

My initial question should be - do you really need $1000+ headphones if you wonder if you can use them with your "gaming" soundcard. You sure you're not just spending money because you can?
not only for gaming, but as i mention am always try to hear something better so it's not just spent i want to use the best i can spend for it

If you use ibasso dx90 dac get a good amp
with PC?

If you are deadset on the exact pieces you've named then yes, the Asus first then the amp.
no that was my search i am looking for best options, please tell me if there is something better

As I know I should have good sound quality in output before it amplifier it
 

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ok can you tell me more about it? sure i want to get best sound quality



not only for gaming, but as i mention am always try to hear something better so it's not just spent i want to use the best i can spend for it



with PC?



no that was my search i am looking for best options, please tell me if there is something better



As I know I should have good sound quality in output before it amplifier it
Yes, pc, dac, amp
 
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Conventional wisdom says that output can only be as good as the source, BUT... you're talking about a set of 300 ohm cans here... They're not going to sound good, if they even work at all, without an amplifier. Get an amp first. If you don't have an amp, those will not sound any better than a $100 set, IF they can even be driven to an audible volume without one.

If I'm being totally honest here though, if you're asking this question, you shouldn't be spending $1600 on a set of headphones. You're wasting your money. Get a $500 set of cans, a really nice amp, and a really nice external DAC for the same price. If you're spending $1600 bucks on a set of cans, you should already have a top quality DAC and amp.

EDIT: I just happened to look up your sound card (that you have now) and they claim to be able to drive up to 600 ohm headphones... I doubt it... At $179 for a sound card, DAC, AND amplifier? Not happening. Not in a way that is going to do justice to 800S's. I can't stress enough, if you've got the budget for 800S's, you should divert MOST of that budget in fact, to a really nice external DAC and amp. A good DAC and amp will elevate even your HE400i set to something that will sound better, have more definition and clarity, than a set of 800S's will on your current sound card. If I were in your shoes, I'd get an amp and DAC and see how they sound on your HE400i. Then, if you like what you hear and need more, then look at new cans.

A lot of the reason I say this is... I think you'll be disappointed in the 800S's for your use case. They will legit sound horrible for gaming, because they are going to expose how horrible the source is. Gaming audio is not the cleanest, most high fidelity sound around, to say the least... And the 800S's will expose that, and you'll hate it. It will sound far worse than your current setup, I imagine. On top of that, you're not even coming close to getting the most you could out of your HE400i set with that sound card. They're an amazing set of cans! Get an amp and dac, and you'll fall in love with them all over again.
 
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Conventional wisdom says that output can only be as good as the source, BUT... you're talking about a set of 300 ohm cans here... They're not going to sound good, if they even work at all, without an amplifier. Get an amp first. If you don't have an amp, those will not sound any better than a $100 set, IF they can even be driven to an audible volume without one.

If I'm being totally honest here though, if you're asking this question, you shouldn't be spending $1600 on a set of headphones. You're wasting your money. Get a $500 set of cans, a really nice amp, and a really nice external DAC for the same price. If you're spending $1600 bucks on a set of cans, you should already have a top quality DAC and amp.

EDIT: I just happened to look up your sound card (that you have now) and they claim to be able to drive up to 600 ohm headphones... I doubt it... At $179 for a sound card, DAC, AND amplifier? Not happening. Not in a way that is going to do justice to 800S's. I can't stress enough, if you've got the budget for 800S's, you should divert MOST of that budget in fact, to a really nice external DAC and amp. A good DAC and amp will elevate even your HE400i set to something that will sound better, have more definition and clarity, than a set of 800S's will on your current sound card. If I were in your shoes, I'd get an amp and DAC and see how they sound on your HE400i. Then, if you like what you hear and need more, then look at new cans.

A lot of the reason I say this is... I think you'll be disappointed in the 800S's for your use case. They will legit sound horrible for gaming, because they are going to expose how horrible the source is. Gaming audio is not the cleanest, most high fidelity sound around, to say the least... And the 800S's will expose that, and you'll hate it. It will sound far worse than your current setup, I imagine. On top of that, you're not even coming close to getting the most you could out of your HE400i set with that sound card. They're an amazing set of cans! Get an amp and dac, and you'll fall in love with them all over again.
I become think about HD700
 
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Before throwing money at headphones, and your HE 400i are good cans, make up your mind about what you want to achieve.
Maybe you want punchy base, then look into something like the Neumann NDH-20 (they also need power).
Maybe you are gaming in a noisy environment (LAN parties, etc.), then closed back will make a world of difference.
When you lock yourself in your gaming room and are only surrounded by the silent humming of your PC, then you are looking at the wrong piece of kit to upgrade.


For the Sennheiser HD 800S (and any other high quality headphone/speaker setup), you want to get your PC to do no more than be the source of digital audio (SPDIF, TOSLINK, AES, ADAT, MADI, MIDI).

You could for example feed an aune X8 via Toslink and have that in turn feed feed an aune X7S.

At the very least, you will need a headphone amplifier for these. And what that amp will do is take sound coming from the electrically noisiest environment there is (apart from a 3 phase converter), and put power to it.

With all of that said: Do not buy HD 800S for gaming.


Also: Sennheiser headphones have a very Sennheiser sound signature, just like beyerdynamic has their V sound signature. Be aware of that before buying their most expensive (ignoring the HE-1) headphone!
 

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I become think about HD700
Why?

Before you said you want the "best sounding audio," but that's subjective. What exactly about your current setup do you not like?
 
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I'm running a set of Razer Tiamats directly from my sound card, for 7.1 surround, and I really like it.

I've noticed in games that you can hear someone walk all the way around you, if you're cloaked. :) (Crysis Wars)

I definitely can't hear well enough for a setof $1500 headphones. :)
 
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I use and recommend external DACs too. Use your fiber optic connection from your PC to your DAC, then run that to your headphone amp. Schiit Audio makes great, affordable stuff and may have everything you need on their site.
 
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Second Schiit. Get whatever DAC and AMP you want to fit your budget, and hook up your current headphones to them. Then, if you want more, upgrade the cans.
 
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Why?

Before you said you want the "best sounding audio," but that's subjective. What exactly about your current setup do you not like?
I don't know I am confusing, Seems the HD800s will not give real performance on PC

I use and recommend external DACs too. Use your fiber optic connection from your PC to your DAC, then run that to your headphone amp. Schiit Audio makes great, affordable stuff and may have everything you need on their site.
So as DAC with AMP i see lyr is the best option here right?

Second Schiit. Get whatever DAC and AMP you want to fit your budget, and hook up your current headphones to them. Then, if you want more, upgrade the cans.
It's ok give me all possible upgrades with HD800s
 
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