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Old 20th October 2007, 00:03   #1
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Default Powering Headphones

There have been few headphone threads in past. But didnt find an answer there.

I need to know how to ensure that headphones get adequate power?

In cars we have option to match our amplifier power to speakers attached.

What to do in case of portable audio like iPod. How much power it puts out?
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Old 20th October 2007, 08:35   #2
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For more than "stock" power, you can get headphone amps (from abroad) like the Bithead or the Boostaroo.
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Old 20th October 2007, 09:53   #3
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THe Bithead is not really nesscary. the Airhead is adequate. You can even power it from the car electrical system (think airhead in rear sest arm rest). Headphones recomended are the AKG 701, Beyer Dynamic DT880 or Sennheisser HD600. Beyond this you will have to consider Stax Electrostatics.
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Old 20th October 2007, 11:25   #4
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But wouldnt these be really bad for the ears, and also impair hearing in the long run?
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Old 20th October 2007, 11:41   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gopz View Post
But wouldnt these be really bad for the ears, and also impair hearing in the long run?
Nope. Amping the 'phones is all about giving them good power, to make them sound better, just like amping regular speakers. We don't amp the headphones just for a raw volume increase.

But like they say, with great power comes great responsibility You have to use the power responsibly, by keeping the volumes reasonable. Else it will ultimately lead to hearing loss.
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Old 20th October 2007, 11:41   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gopz View Post
But wouldnt these be really bad for the ears, and also impair hearing in the long run?
A volume control is standard at no extra charge!
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Old 20th October 2007, 14:02   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hydrashok View Post
But like they say, with great power comes great responsibility
.........................
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Old 20th October 2007, 16:53   #8
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Has anyone here tried the popular DIY CMOY headphone amplifier? How good/bad is it?

@Navin: Can we have your impressions on how good the crossfeed of the Airhead/Bithead is? I have never heard any myself, but the theory sounds good.

@Scary, If your cans have a sensitivity of 16-32 ohms, I think you don't need a headphone amplifier (at least for the power). If your cans have a rating higher than that, then you might need a headphone amp.

Last edited by d.kiran : 20th October 2007 at 16:58. Reason: Posted before completing.
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Old 20th October 2007, 23:57   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by d.kiran View Post
Has anyone here tried the popular DIY CMOY headphone amplifier? How good/bad is it?

@Navin: Can we have your impressions on how good the crossfeed of the Airhead/Bithead is? I have never heard any myself, but the theory sounds good.
to be honest I prefer them without the crossfeed. theory and practice are often divorced. I'm told it makes more sense will lesser 'phones.

As fas as the CMOY is concerned I have never built one. the 2134 is an excellent low noise opamp but I think the OP275 might sound nicer. When I built my preamp I tried any number of opamps incl the 2134 and th 275 worked best but that was in my preamp and not in a headphone amp. the 275does not measure as well but measurements is not something I'd set in stone.
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Old 21st October 2007, 18:06   #10
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Good points.

Anyways, what option for guys who dont have headphone amps for now?
How to know outputs of their mp3 players like iPods?
What good headphones to use in that power range?
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Old 21st October 2007, 22:50   #11
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In my opinion, anything between 16-32 ohms should be fine with ipods. Some people I know use 64Ohm ones as well, but I have my reservations. While buying my headphones, in the end it boiled down to a Sennheiser (550 I think) and a Grado SR125 for my budget. I ended up choosing the Grado, because I felt that in certain areas(I remember the track I noticed this was Locomotive breath by Jethro Tull), the Sennheiser started sounding murky which I thought was caused by a lack of power rather than a limitation of the cans themselves(though I am not sure that really was the cause). The senns had a rating of 50 ohms and the Grado, 32. I could not afford a headphone amp then, so I went ahead with the Grado (despite the senns being marginally better).

You can check out headroom (www.headphone.com). They carry a lot of good headphones and if you are comfy with in ear ones, do check those out as well. They offer very good passive noise isolation usually, but can cause discomfort while worn for a long time.
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Old 22nd October 2007, 10:39   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by d.kiran View Post
In my opinion, anything between 16-32 ohms should be fine with ipods..
I have used 600ohm headphones direct too. As long as the 'phones are senstive enough you should not have an issue. Besides I dont listen to music too loud.
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Old 21st November 2015, 13:56   #13
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Default Re: Powering Headphones

Sorry for cranking up a classic but my query is squarely identical to this thread and thus I'm refraining from creating a new one.

I'm not an audiophile and my use for headphones is restricted to PC gaming sessions. From a pair of unknown Panasonic, I gradually moved up to a Sennheiser HD202 II and then onto a more comfortable Cooler Master Pitch gaming IEM. Apart from the cans, I use Edifier C3 desk speaker system. All powered by the inbuilt audio chip on the PC motherboard.

Last week my Pitch IEMs conked off and after some advice I bought a HyperX Cloud Core (product page : http://www.hyperxgaming.com/en/cloud...FcIrvQodG58IYg ). Upon plugging the headset and running a few games and movies, I realised that the sound output is noticeably low. A bit of a layman's query unearthed that these cans (being 60 ohms rated) cannot be powered by the vanilla integrated audio chip which is capable of serving cans rated only upto 32 ohms. Further inquisition revealed that I need a headphone amplifier and the unanimous suggestion was the Asus Xonar DG ( product link : https://www.asus.com/Sound-Cards/Xonar_DG/ ) which the local distributor says is not in supply. Some sources on ebay / Amazon is available but I'm not comfortable with them although this is supposedly a very low priced item.

I also chanced upon some portable headphone amplifiers in the same price range e.g.
FiiO E6 ( Link : http://www.flipkart.com/fiio-fujiyam...er=from-search).

My question is, will the portable FiiO E6 amp be a good alternative to the Asus Xonar DG PCI sound card ?

Thanks.
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