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I'm going to need an amp to drive these cans, and a portable player to go with it. Anyone got any suggestions? I'm thinking about the Fiio 1 gen2 player for its reasonable cost, but would the more expensive ones make a difference? And what amp should I go with? I don't really have a sound signature in mind as I'm new to this, so any with a good quality should be fine.
FiiO generally not recommended due to low power output, this is a desktop headphone and you really need a desk amp for it. I know massdrop markets this as a "plug into the back of your phone" headphone, I don't know why they do this, maybe for mass appeal.
Pick something from the Schiit range, higher end amps will sound better so get the best one you can afford for now, you can always upgrade later. Not sure what other equipment you've got, if you need a DAC too, consider the ODAC.
If you want a portable solution, the ifi idsd black edition is great. It is very powerful and sounds as good or even better than many desktop amps. The ifi idsd is an amp/dac with multiple digital in connections, so you can use your phone, computer or any other source you want.
My setup is going to be
(PCIe) Creative Sound Blaster 5/Rx --> (3.5mm) O2 Amp --> (3.5mm) HD 6xx
I highly recommend both the 5/Rx and the O2 Amp. I like Creative's sound signature with the 5/Rx and the O2 amp adds basically no extra sound but alllll the extra power I need. The O2 specifically is praised for "transparency". The 5/Rx, however, is more of a personal preference. I like it purely for the sound signature it provides. (If anybody has suggestions for an upgrade over my current 5/Rx I would greatly appreciate it!!)
I understand this headphone needs a lot of power to work proper. However, I want to be able to use it on the go, and I don't have any sort of mobile player, not even a phone! I was looking at the Fiio players because they seem to be good quality and have decent power output. As to your Amp and ODAC suggestions, they seem to be very attractive, especialy since my only equipment I have is what came on the motherboard on my computer. What is your setup?
You're right about FiiO, they do make some quality products, I've got a few products from their range, but I only take my easy to drive headphones with me when in travelling.
An ODAC is perfect with your PC setup, it will let you use the USB output from your computer. I've got one of these set up at my work which I am driving with an Aune amp.
Suggestions from other people are all good, Speedball with Crack is a great amp. O2 amp does well with ODAC together as it's the same company. You can get O2+ODAC together in 1 box and I believe they have drops on these. Between the two, Crack will sound better but they are only optimal with high impedance cans.
My home headphone setup goes like this: PC > PurePower battery > Audiophilleo2 clock > modded Metrum Octave mk2 DAC > Woo Audio WA6SE amp with some NOS tubes. I haven't bothered much with cables because it's not my main rig. My speakers are my main listening rig, but I haven't been able to use it much lately as I've got a newborn so it's going to be head fi for awhile :)