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Summer Upgrade Sound Suggestions

post #1 of 10
Thread Starter 
Hello forum,

I currently run on board sound from my Crosshair V Formula which, although doesnt sound THAT bad, is definite not the best quality sound. So this summer I plan on upgrading some computer components and sound quality is on the list. I am thinking about spending around $300-450 on sound and would like some suggestions on Hi-Fi Equipment. I am moving into an apartment so I need a good set of dedicated headphones. I have heard good things about the Schiit Magni and Modi stack. Would this be a good choice with no sound card? Should I get a sound card AND the Schiit stack? If so, what headphones should I get? This is for a mainly gaming rig.

- My Budget will be no more than $450.00
- My Music Tatses are R&B / Techno / Rock / HipHop in that order
- Perks I would like to have is a good headset for gaming
- I currently have no amp or soundcard and am using onboard sound from a Crosshair V Formula
- I will be using them in my apartment strictly

Thanks forum!
Edited by DreamScar - 4/9/14 at 7:12am
post #2 of 10
Stuff to check:
OCN recommendations
Gaming headphone guide

You can always pair the Schiit Magni (amplifier) with the soundcard of your choice, no need to go for full stack.
But Modi (the DAC) is always the better option if you don't need any DSP effects (virtual surround/etc.) or optical/digital output.
Keep in mind that Modi won't work with headphones without an amplifier (Magni).


As for headphones.. 'Murica?
AKG Q701
DT880
DT990 Pro
etc.

Can't give any detailed recommendations without moar info (music taste/etc.).
Edited by Tiihokatti - 4/9/14 at 7:10am
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post #3 of 10
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tiihokatti View Post

Stuff to check:
OCN recommendations
Gaming headphone guide

You can always pair the Schiit Magni (amplifier) with the soundcard of your choice, no need to go for full stack.
But Modi (the DAC) is always the better option if you don't need any DSP effects (virtual surround/etc.) or optical/digital output.

As for headphones.. 'Murica?
AKG Q701
DT990 Pro
etc.

Can't give any detailed recommendations without moar info (music taste/etc.).

Good advice ^


A used Xonar STX + these glorious headphones would basically cover all your bases and sound amazing with everything, Phillips X1s or AKG Q701s + a Schiit stack would be OK as well.

A Schiit modi is basically an un-amped soundcard, if you want to look at it that way. Modern soundcards are just DAC+AMP bundles, they don't really do any processing.
Edited by brucethemoose - 4/9/14 at 7:00am
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post #4 of 10
Thread Starter 
Thank you for the info! I apologize for just jumping in here and not following the suggested guidelines.

What are the main differences between the DT880 and the DT990s? And I dont online game all too much so a good little tabletop boom mic would be perfect. Is that what most people use paired with a set of those glorious headphones?
post #5 of 10
With the Beyer headphones you can always go for the DIY headset design.
And here is Simca's long DT880 review. In a nutshell the DT880 is more balanced sounding and doesn't have the strong bass of DT990.

HE-400 (300$) is pretty good candidate. You could also check if you can find Aune T1 DAC/amp from somewhere, massdrop had them for ~130$ and I was tempted to order one (even though I live in Finland...).
DAC+amp would basically be the way to go as you don't seem to need any Dolby Headphone/SBX surround support. And you can always use Razer Surround software if there is need for that.

I would recommend to check a local music shop to audition the headphones (take your favourite music with you). For example the DT series can be auditioned in almost any music shop in Finland.
Edited by Tiihokatti - 4/9/14 at 7:52am
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post #6 of 10
Quote:
Originally Posted by DreamScar View Post

Thank you for the info! I apologize for just jumping in here and not following the suggested guidelines.

What are the main differences between the DT880 and the DT990s? And I dont online game all too much so a good little tabletop boom mic would be perfect. Is that what most people use paired with a set of those glorious headphones?

The 880s are more neutral, but there isn't a plastic "pro" variant so they're more expensive than the 990s.

Alot of people use a clip-on mic, but a boom mic would be fine. Heck, I just use my smartphone as a mic biggrin.gif

The Phillips X1 is also a great do-it-all headphone, the HE-400 (which recently got a $100 price drop) is even better, especially if you use aftermarket pads.
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post #7 of 10
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tiihokatti View Post

You could also check if you can find Aune T1 DAC/amp from somewhere, massdrop had them for ~130$ and I was tempted to order one.

How does the Aune T1 DAC compare to the Schiit? And is that all I would need as opposed to the Schiit Magni & Modi?
post #8 of 10
Quote:
Originally Posted by DreamScar View Post

How does the Aune T1 DAC compare to the Schiit? And is that all I would need as opposed to the Schiit Magni & Modi?
The Head-Fi community is more than happy with the Aune T1. And so is OCN.
And yes, the Aune T1 has tube DAC and solid state amplifier. Meaning that it would do the work of a modi+magni stack.
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post #9 of 10
Thread Starter 
Okay, I am sold on the Aune T1 with a Amperrex 7308 tube, along with a set of DT990 Pro's. I will be ordering them in the coming month. Thank you OCN!
post #10 of 10
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