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Do you need a DAC or amplifier for this headset? Would these or the K7xx be better for gaming? Are either of them good for gaming? I've heard it's best to get a good headphone set, rather than looking at gaming headsets. My Turtle Beach PX22 weren't very good, they were alright... but crackling/bad quality has occurred after a few years.
Just found out about massdrop, figured I'd see what kind of headphones were on here... and if any were a good deal for gaming.
Appreciate the help! Also, hopefully I'm not too last minute... as the akg k7xx goes out in 4 hours haha.
First, they're headphones, not head-sets. A DAC is a Digital Audio Converter or Digital to Analog Converter (however you want it). It takes a signal from your computer, turns it into something a speaker (or headphone driver) can understand and it makes the coil (or foil [planar]) move. An amplifier, amplifies the signal. My SMSL SD-793II has a strong enough signal out the back to run 56 ohm headphones with plenty of volume left. Unbearably loud was at about sixty percent. The DAC also outputs low end better than the amp for efficient headphones. Anything over 60 ohms, I can't say that anything over 70 ohms will run smoothly from the DAC only. Fiio E10K, is another DAC/amp but isn't as powerful due to it being powered by USB, and from my research, isn't as good as the SMSL alternative that is cheaper. My newbie setup was the SMSL SD-793II and Sennheiser HD558 which i've modded with polyfil. These AKGs only have a 30mm driver. Not too sure how well it works but, I haven't heard great things about these. These are also more directed towards studio applications, meaning these will be flat, straight forward sounding (as reviews also suggest). These would NOT be a good gaming headphone. A good gaming headphone has great imaging, expansive soundstage, crystal clear highs, mids and doesn't make much bass. Bass and Treble dominant headphones however have done well for gaming. Not as precise because the low end mucks up the higher frequencies that give away positions of enemies. Some cheaper headphones will separate bass from treble better than others. Bass is a very subjective sound for audiophiles and gamers.
Recommendations for $100 or less headphones
Sennheiser HD500 series headphones (open back). There's a second wave of 5xx series headphones, do your research. headfi.org is a great resource.
ATH AD700X. I've never had these but, according to reviewers that know a thing or two, it has exelent imaging, not very wide soundstage and is quite clear but lacks bass. It lacks bass because of it's VERY open design.
Beyerdynamic DT990,880, or 770 pro 250 ohm (used)
Superlux HD668B. Wide soundstage, poor imaging but it's less than $40. Some simple mods can go a long way though.
Sennheiser HD598Cs. Closed, yet sounds open, may or may not find for less than a hundred dollars. It's marketed as a portable headphone but i've found to be too nice and the materials are too easy to get dirty.
DAC/amp for under $100
Fiio E10K less powerful, reported to sound thin compared to SMSL, even using the amp out on the SMSL which hinders the DACs quality ever so slightly.
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