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Xonar Essence STX vs amp for HD595

post #1 of 8
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After much research I think I will be going with the Sennheiser HD595 headphones. I am still not sure whether I should get the Xonar Essence STX sound card with a built in amp or if I should get an amp such as the Maverick Audio TubeMagic D1, which is basically the same price as the Xonar. Would it be better to get the amp and connect it to my current sound card? (Creative X-fi Fatal1ty Pro).
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post #2 of 8
I don't know which would sound better, but the DAC would connect via USB and therefore bypassing your current X-Fi card.
    
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post #3 of 8
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ariel92 View Post
After much research I think I will be going with the Sennheiser HD595 headphones. I am still not sure whether I should get the Xonar Essence STX sound card with a built in amp or if I should get an amp such as the Maverick Audio TubeMagic D1, which is basically the same price as the Xonar. Would it be better to get the amp and connect it to my current sound card? (Creative X-fi Fatal1ty Pro).
Why are you buying the STX, if I may ask? HD595s don't require amplification. I've owned the HD598s (similar to HD595s) with the STX then downgraded to the DS and it fed them just as good as the STX.
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post #4 of 8
I own the xense (same opamps as stx?) and the maverick d1. While the 595s don't need amping they do sound better with a much cleaner source and/or dedicated amp.

IMO
PC-optical->mav->595: sound uncontrolled and very bassy, sharp highs.
PC->xonar->595: more controlled, crisp soundstage, punchy bass.
Don't forget it has a ton of EQ options.

If I were you i'd get the xonar. While I do love the mav, it's more suited for
pre-amping to a dedicated amp to use with high impedance headphones.
post #5 of 8
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by voxox View Post
Why are you buying the STX, if I may ask? HD595s don't require amplification. I've owned the HD598s (similar to HD595s) with the STX then downgraded to the DS and it fed them just as good as the STX.
I've heard that the bass on the HD595's can be pretty weak without a decent amp.
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post #6 of 8
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by 7ranslucen7 View Post
I own the xense (same opamps as stx?) and the maverick d1. While the 595s don't need amping they do sound better with a much cleaner source and/or dedicated amp.

IMO
PC-optical->mav->595: sound uncontrolled and very bassy, sharp highs.
PC->xonar->595: more controlled, crisp soundstage, punchy bass.
Don't forget it has a ton of EQ options.

If I were you i'd get the xonar. While I do love the mav, it's more suited for
pre-amping to a dedicated amp to use with high impedance headphones.
Thanks, I was considering the Xense but haven't been able to find it without the headphone bundle and it seems very similar to the Essence STX anyway.
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post #7 of 8
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ariel92 View Post
I've heard that the bass on the HD595's can be pretty weak without a decent amp.
While it may be true due to the 200Ohm spike around 100Hz on the HD595s, I wasn't able to hear/feel the extra bass when using the 64~300Ohm option on the STX with my HD598s which have the spike around 300Ohm. I am only saying what I've experienced. To be honest, even my ipod touch 2g was able to drive the HD598s pretty easily.


Edited by voxox - 6/12/11 at 12:21am
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post #8 of 8
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ariel92 View Post
Thanks, I was considering the Xense but haven't been able to find it without the headphone bundle and it seems very similar to the Essence STX anyway.
They probably are with slight differences, I know the UI is practically the same.
The mav route wouldn't be bad if you were willing to fork over more $$ for a dedicated amp to go with it. Although for 595s they would be overkill, just a consideration if you ever went down the audiophile road and splurged on some high end ones.
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