Join Date: Oct 2005
Location: Western New York
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Whats the cost? What price of the headphones makes it a waste of time? $50 and lower I guess?
I've thought the same thing ...
And in fact, when using the Xm4 with my Zen Vision M, I do use a pure line-out ...
But for the life of me ... I don't think the X-fi Elite Pro offers an unamped line-out (miniplug) ... (can anyone enlighten me?).
That said ... the OPAMP in the breakout box really doesn't perform that bad ... little bright for my liking (which is why I'm switching it out).
When I get a decent desktop amp, I'll be going line-out from the optical and so things will sound better I'm sure ...
who said anything about waste of time? I can understand not wanting to spend loads of money on a cheap pair of cans, but a good pair of cans can easily double in price after mods and upgrades.
For example my wife can't stand clip-ons so I modded a pair of Koss ksc75's for her. I took the housing from a pair of Sony VR150 (or something like that) and modded them, keeping the open design of the ksc75's by making the Sony housings open, then adding a SPC cable. Total into the mod is more than double the cost of a stock pair of ksc75's, but they are more practical, comfortable and sound better, so was that a waste of time?
When I owned a pair of AKG k81dj's I gave them a better cable. The headphones cost $70 and between the cable and install fee (I did it myself so actual cost is less) that added about another $70 to the price.
The pair of Beyer DT770 Pro/80's that I had and modded looked something like this:
Beyer 770 pro/80: $200
leather pads: $65
And that was just the materials, not the labor put into the cans, but when I was done with them the cans were amazing and the best gaming headphones I have ever heard, and very, very good at electronic music, even better than the ATH cans costing more that I've heard.
My current pair of Senn HD580's have Hd600 grills and a $200 cable, but they sound amazing
It just really comes down to how much you are willing to spend, and how good of ears and gear you have. Sometimes the extra money is well worth it, and other times there is very little difference. If you can do the mods and/or solder you can save a lot of money by buying a pre-built cable and installing it yourself or building a cable yourself. Having someone build and install a cable is when it gets expensive because you are paying for the materials, labor to build the cable and then the labor to install the cable on your cans.
If you have a good source and amp then cables can be a very real way to better your system, but they are the last 10% of a system in bringing it all together.
Personally, where my systems are at: My speakers/headphones, amps and cables are all top notch, it is my sources that need to be upgraded. I'll have an excellent vinyl setup very soon, and will be saving for a new digital source