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2 audio questions.

post #1 of 3
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1. How is the DAC/Amp in the Xonar Essence STX?

I have a pair of HD-280's, and I heard they sounded a lot better amped. Would I get a better SQ increase from the STX or a FiiO E7 DAC and E9 Amp?

2. If I was buying a new set of headphones (or IEM's for that matter) what would have the biggest "wow factor"? I've been looking at the HD555, would it outclass my HD280?

I listen to techno, rock, big band, classical, punk, electro, funk, metal, etc.

Current audio setup: FLAC>VLC>Onboard Sound>HD 280 Pro
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CPUGraphicsRAMHard Drive
Intel i7-2820QM Intel Iris Pro DDR3-1600 PCIe Solid State Drive 
OSMonitorAudio
Mac OS X 10.9.4 Mavericks 2880x1800 15" Retina Display Focusrite 2i2 -> Beyerdynamic T50p 
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post #2 of 3
1. The STX has a very good DAC. It is probably a bit better than, or on par with the E7 DAC. If you want to upgrade something, I would recommend just getting an external amp, such as the E9 (although your options are not limited to only this).

2. That really depends on how much money you want to spend.


EDIT: I misread your post. I thought you already had the STX.

Since your current headphones don't really need to be amped that much, I would recommend going with the STX or an external DAC. Then you can worry about an amp once you get nicer headphones.
Edited by jfiaff - 5/26/11 at 5:31pm
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Phenom II X6 1055T @ 4GHz GIGABYTE GA-870A-UD3 SAPPHIRE TOXIC Radeon HD 5850 1GB G.SKILL Ripjaws 4GB DDR3 
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Intel 40GB SSD WD Caviar Black 1TB ASUS DVDRW Windows 7 Home Premium 64-bit ASUS Glossy Black 23" 
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post #3 of 3
Is this purely for music and no gaming or both?
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