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What amp for HD 800?

post #1 of 27
Thread Starter 
Hello folks,

I'm thinking about getting Sennheiser HD 800's, unless anyone knows if there is coming an even higher end model anytime soon?
So what amp should I get for them? Max budget for amp 200$. O2 amp any good with HD 800?

Also I game 70%, music 30%. Dedicated DAC or Creative ZxR?
Is the Creative ZxR headphone amp enough to drive HD 800 or is external amp required?



Thank you for help! smile.gif
post #2 of 27
If you could stretch to $250 there is the schiit asgard 2 which I think does well with HD800s.

http://schiit.com/cart/index.php?main_page=product_info&cPath=0&products_id=16

I can't comment on the ZxR as I haven't heard it. You could run your RCA out directly to the asgard.

Also in the land of schiit, $200 could get you a magni/modi combo which I have heard drives HD800s. Crazy value...

http://schiit.com/cart/index.php?main_page=product_info&cPath=0&products_id=13

http://schiit.com/cart/index.php?main_page=product_info&cPath=0&products_id=14

Reviews;

http://noblehifi.blogspot.com.au/2013/03/schiit-modi-magni-review.html

http://www.headfonia.com/schitty-magni-and-modi/

A brief comparison with the O2;

http://www.head-fi.org/t/642401/comparison-and-review-magni-modi-vs-o2-odac

As always, its best to audition these things before you commit.
Edited by vhsownsbeta - 6/4/13 at 4:38pm
   
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post #3 of 27
Not sure what to recommend, but the audiophiles over at head-fi would castrate you for using a sub $200 amp with HD 800s.
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post #4 of 27
Thread Starter 
Thank you very much for your suggestions, they look interesting. I have one small concern though.

I read from somewhere from head-fi, that HD 800 need 500mW on 300 ohm or something like that. On the specs of those amps it's not going that high. Any thoughts about that?
Edited by Yahar - 6/4/13 at 4:52pm
post #5 of 27
Why do you want $1,500 headphones with a $200 dollar amp? Why do you even want the HD800 anyway? For gaming I really don't think it will make that much of a difference. There are way cheaper options.
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post #6 of 27
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Deceit View Post

Why do you want $1,500 headphones with a $200 dollar amp? Why do you even want the HD800 anyway? For gaming I really don't think it will make that much of a difference. There are way cheaper options.


I am really new with audio stuff. Can you give me scientifical explanation as to why I need 1500$ amp? $=performance? How expensive amp do I need and why?
post #7 of 27
Quote:
Originally Posted by Yahar View Post

I am really new with audio stuff. Can you give me scientifical explanation as to why I need 1500$ amp? $=performance? How expensive amp do I need and why?

That question is a massive 'can of worms' as they say... People get crazy about audio, especially on head-fi. Do you have a link to that thread?

I would only trust what you hear yourself. I tried a friends HD800 on my asgard and they were great. Then again, I wouldn't know how they sounded on a $1500 amp...
   
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post #8 of 27
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by vhsownsbeta View Post

That question is a massive 'can of worms' as they say... People get crazy about audio, especially on head-fi. Do you have a link to that thread?

I would only trust what you hear yourself. I tried a friends HD800 on my asgard and they were great. Then again, I wouldn't know how they sounded on a $1500 amp...


http://www.head-fi.org/t/464276/sennheiser-hd800-with-asus-xonar-essence-st-stx/75#post_6515328

So I'm guessing Creative ZxR can't drive them either as it has same headphone amp.

Just want something that can fully drive the HD 800's. As cheap as possible smile.gif
post #9 of 27
I had a pair of HD800s for awhile. They are SENSATIONAL! I drove them with an Audio-GD NFB-12, Cambridge DACMagic Plus, Oppo BDP-105, and ALO Audio Pan Am. The Pan Am sounded gorgeous with the HD800s. I ended up selling my Audio-GD NFB-12 and keeping the Pan Am. However, I did not keep the HD800s. My preference is to spend less on headphones and more on speakers. For my needs, $1500 was better put towards my multi-channel and 2-channel audio system.

I did game with the HD800 using the Oppo BDP-105 DAC and Headphone output. I highly suggest you DO NOT blow that kind of money on headphones if you're 70/30 gaming and music. The HD800s were not anything special for gaming. They were magnificent for high quality audio. But you're really wasting money if you do not exclusively listen to music with these headphones.

You would be better off to get something like HiFi Man HE500s and a much better amp/DAC. As opposed to the HD800 and a really poor quality amp and DAC. The HiFi Man HE500 is consistently rated at the top of the performance leader boards for not only its performance, but also its performance per dollar. Realistically, if you don't spend more time critically listening to music I would not even recommend the HE500s.

I think the best solution will be the Sennheiser PC363D or Sennheiser PC350 SE. Considering the amount of gaming you intend to do with these headphones, you'll be better off buying a high-end "gaming headset" and occasionally using it for music listening instead of buying a high end "audiophile headphone" and only occasionally using it for music. Plus, you won't need a fancy amp with the Senn PC series and you'll have an extra $1500 in your pocket!
Edited by Greg121986 - 6/5/13 at 12:01pm
post #10 of 27
High impedance headphones really should be paired with a tube amp, regardless of the genre of music being played. I don't see the point of an expensive DAC. IMO you want the DAC to be as transparent as possible, which is easy to measure, and have the amp be the thing that has the sound you seek. The more expensive the DAC the more it seems to be designed by ear instead of striving for measurable specs. For the amp I will recommend the Bottlehead Crack with the Speedball upgrade.
 
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