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HE-500 & Xonar STX

post #1 of 63
Thread Starter 
Yeah, those. I'm contemplating getting them in the relatively near future, and would love some moral support with my limited understanding that the amp on the Xonar STX will be sufficient for driving them before I drop a grand on the pair. I almost solely stream 320kbps at my desktop so I won't be taking them around, but I'm also thinking about upgrading my 2.1s to something like Rokits, so it would be nice if I can keep both plugged into the Xonar at the same time - just want to make sure I can do that.

Is this an ideal set-up to take full advantage of their sonic potential? If not, what am I missing? Thanks in advance!
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post #2 of 63
HE-500s are a very good set of cans. Sounds better than a poorly driven pair of HE-6s!

Looking at the outputs of the STX, it looks like you could plug them both in and have them output audio simultaneously. Not sure how you would only output on one thing without physically disconnecting them.

I think the best solution would be to look at a good external amp with will link up with the soundcard via SPDIF. That would guarantee the HE-500s would be driven properly and would probably sound better anyway. Plus you would still get your virtual 7.1 sound if you do it that way.
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post #3 of 63
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by ohhgourami View Post

I think the best solution would be to look at a good external amp with will link up with the soundcard via SPDIF. That would guarantee the HE-500s would be driven properly and would probably sound better anyway. Plus you would still get your virtual 7.1 sound if you do it that way.

Thanks for the advice! I will look into that, but I'm curious as to why the Xonar itself wouldn't be able to drive it properly?
Quote:
Originally Posted by ohhgourami View Post

Looking at the outputs of the STX, it looks like you could plug them both in and have them output audio simultaneously. Not sure how you would only output on one thing without physically disconnecting them.

Sorry, I reread that a couple times and am just not getting it; would you be able to clarify for me please?
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post #4 of 63
I got an ST a couple of years ago and I love it! I'll vote for yes
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post #5 of 63
Quote:
Originally Posted by gauchotodd View Post

Thanks for the advice! I will look into that, but I'm curious as to why the Xonar itself wouldn't be able to drive it properly?
Sorry, I reread that a couple times and am just not getting it; would you be able to clarify for me please?
I didn't see the specs for the amp section, at least not wattage rating. Soundcards usually have pretty garbage amp sections. Take a look at this thread: http://headphones.com.au/forums/viewtopic.php?f=6&t=6513

So the card has a couple outputs: RCA, TRS, and SPDIF. You will connect your speakers via RCA while you could plug the HE-500 via TRS. Not sure how the circuit is laid out, but I would think the outputs would be in parallel.

Still the best solution for you is to get an amp for the HE-500 so it can be properly driven. The question about running both speakers and headphones simultaneously remains though.
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post #6 of 63
Thread Starter 
Okay cool, that makes more sense to me now... I don't necessarily need to push audio through both simultaneously though, it would just be nice to not have to physically unplug the cables; a couple clicks to change audio source is no big deal wink.gif

Edit: if it is possible to push both sources simultaneously though, I'd certainly like to know how... I might not use it much if at all, but knowledge is power!
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post #7 of 63
Well there won't be any software that would push both sources simultaneously. That is determined by the circuit. It either does it or it doesn't. Hopefully someone else can answer that question.
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post #8 of 63
The STX will send to either the line-out (stereo RCA) or the headphone amp (6.3mm stereo jack plug) not both at the same time, you'd select the output in the Xonar control panel. Are HE500s hard to drive, they seem to be 38 Ohm? I think STX (or ST) is one of the best DAC-Amp's on a soundcard but far from the best DAC-Amp there is. If you go with an external DAC-Amp though you lose the "Virtual 3D" features you'd expect with a soundcard if that's at all important.
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post #9 of 63
38 ohm but orthodynamic which means the impedance doesn't really matter. What matters is current or higher wattage. I'm pretty sure if you use the SPDIF output to an external amp, you keep the virtual 3D aspects.
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post #10 of 63
Thread Starter 
For music I'm not really concerned about virtual 3D, for the little gaming I do it might be interesting, who knows. But that link you gave me has some pretty interesting info. Still going through it little by little as I can...
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