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Ok, so after joining the drop I've been looking around at options to get the most out of these bad boys.
I have narrowed my choices down to:
- Schitt Magni 2 & Modi 2, B-stock, uber versions.
- JDS O2 & OL DAC , B-stock, customised.
- Audio-GD NFB-11.28.
They're all sitting at around the $300 US mark delivered for me, which is about what I'm willing to spend.
Headphones will be used for pretty much everything, from music, movies, PC gaming to PS4 (Hence the optical input)
I'm currently leaning towards the NFB-11.28 at the moment, but as this is my first AMP / DAC purchase I'd like to get opinions from people more knowledgeable than myself.
May be a dumb question, but how would you use these on a PS4? Or I guess I should ask if you plan to just use them as headphones or for chat also?
PS4 has optical out, which is why I want my DAC to have that as an option.
Yeah, I will be using it as a headset for PC & PS4. I'll be using a standalone mic, probably go with something along the lines of the ModMic 5.0, connected through the mic plug on the controller or usb depending on which works better.
Just FYI the ODAC won't have toslink / optical. So between Audio-GD and Schiit, the NFP 11.28 will be far superior, in terms of sound quality and convenience.
You may be thinking of the combined AMP/DAC combo, which you're correct in saying doesn't have toslink. I'm talking about their stand alone DAC though, https://www.jdslabs.com/products/176/ol-dac/
I've read really good things about the NFP 11.28 which is why I'm leaning in that direction.
Thanks for the input.
My mistake, I didn't see the letter "L" in your original post :) I've never listened to an OLDAC, but I suspect the Audio-GD is better.
I like the Schitt in your list not because the others arent worthy. I just really like the build quality, and the company, and the fact that they're 100% manufactured in the USA. Apart from a cosmetic adj I would have made in the design (the power switches should be on front, not rear) i haven't heard better. One thing to consider is connectivity between the unitsThe Schiit stack is strictly RCA. If you need, or may contemplate needing more versatility with connections, a stack that started with the SMSL M8 DAC OR, if you can find one, AUNE X1s (DAC) should also be considered. Even if RCA is fine now a more versatile DAC might serve you better in the fu Massdrop has the SMSL Boffered often. I'm pretty sure I would even do that over the Schiit modi2 but the price is a little higher soI would have been happy with the schitt stack I had the magni2/modi2 uber stack but now I have the jottenheim with its modular DAC The reason I replaced it was I needed an amp to play higher impedance cans than these. Please consider that you probably don't need anything more powerful than the Modi/Magni or any of the others you mentioned unless you have a prima donna headphone such as a Fostex tR50 Mod. The Fostex is an excellent pair of headphones in every iteration I've heard but I love the HD-650s. ) I have three different mars, and I I like the Sennheiser HD 650 better than any of those (I never got the Massdrop 6XXcans because I already had the HD-650s and I assume they're close. Correct me if I'm wrong.)
I would have to disagree. Schiit's build quality is awful. The deburring on the edge is poorly done (one can get scratched easily) and the buttons, knobs, and switches are quiet loose. Schiit is also infamous for its poor customer service, unlike both JDS Labs and Audio-GD, which were and still are praised. Like Schiit, JDS Labs's products are completely made in the United States. Not only that, JDS Labs's build quality is superior to Schiit's. JDS Lab's casing are made through CNC, while Schiit (disclaimer, I do not know how they make their products) look like a poor welding job.
I just ordered an NFB-11.28 today. Read good review as will. Here's hoping its awesome!
I've researched a lot between the same three combos, but I went for the Schiit Uber Stack. I've been using it for the past 5 months, and it works and sounds great! I'm using it with my PC and my PS4 with a push of a button to switch between them. If you still haven't purchased one of the options, you can't go wrong with either of them!
Edit: Listening to my DT990 (250 ohm) on the Uber Stack.
I've heard good things about the Schiit stack (Magni 2 & Modi 2) so I've ordered them and I should receive them in the next day or 2
Hi @Viper36 Audio GD have discount price for 11.28 right now. How much did it cost you? Thank you..
@Sempiternal , i have the same problem like you.. My budget is from $300-$400 for Dac/Amp.. I wonder if Audio GD is better from the 2 listed here.
I too would like to know what the current promo price is, from my research it looks like they drop their prices by 5-10%
Haven't pulled the trigger on anything just yet as I still have months to decide on something.
Audio-gd has released the R2R 11 recently as well, which is also around that price range.
I'm waiting on some reviews of that, wonder how it would pair with the 650's
total price for me was 345 with shipping to texas. Mine was shipped 2 days ago and expected to come tomorrow. i believe i got in before it went out of stock
Same here. Need to decide properly before jumping in. I read good reviews on other Audio GD products.. I checked the old thread on headfi and it seems that some of the users had problem with it or i'm reading a very old thread. Are there any review with the new version? Kinda confused with their product models..
I was thinking of getting the Vali 2 + Modi 2 instead. But since i have more time on choosing which dac / amp to choose i think i'll do a few more research or maybe stretch my budget for this 6xx..
IIRC the issues were with the older NFB 11.32 version, but are now fixed in the current NFB 11.28 version.
Thanks @Sempiternal . So the older model is 11.32? Yikes kinda confusing.
Got a quote for 340usd shipped to my country... i guess 9% off + paypal fees..
The R2R.11 is quite interesting as well..
Correct, 11.32 had some USB issues from what I've read, the new 11.28 rectified that with an improved USB interface among some other upgrades .
Please let me know what you end up getting. We still have a few months to decide. Hahaha
Well, I couldn't wait, ended up ordering the R2R 11 this morning.
$330 US before shipping (6% off with the promo)
Initial reports I've seen around have been very positive.
Now I'll get to stare at it on my desk for 4 months while I wait for my 6XX to arrive haha.
Thanks everyone for their input, hopefully this discussion helps others decide as well.
@Sempiternal hahaha i'm thinking about getting it asap but i'm trying not to..
Can you test it with other headphones or earphones that you have?
Yeah, i saw the thread on Headfi and it's positive.. Audio GD just release a dedicated r2r Dac like the R2R.11. I saw the link but it's in chinese. Maybe they will update their site with EN version soon..
I am ordering this now too since I will need something for my HD6XX. Any thoughts on yours if it's arrived? I also have a CTH coming, so I can use the DAC output from the R2R11 and pick which amp I ilke better. Eventually, when I have everything in February, siiiiigggghhhhhhh
I can't test it yet as my current headphones are USB & the only other ones I have lying around the place are in-ears.
I may be able to borrow a decent set off a mate of mine to test it out, I'll look into it.
Other than that, the ordering process was completely painless & arrived on my doorstep within the week.
The volume knob is smooth & overall the unit feels solid & very well made, that's about all I can comment on at the moment haha.
That would be a lot of patience there.. I bet the Audio GD 11.28 or R2R.11 is much better than the CTH.. Maybe not but i'll go with Audio GD.. Just waiting a few more weeks or a month before ordering the 11.28 or R2R.11.. I wish i the 6xx would be ship much earlier... :(
There is a good review on 11.28 on Youtube.. Check it out. I hope you can test it asap with decent headphones and let us know your impression. :D Goodluck man!
What do you do to switch between them?
Press the button on the Modi to switch between the inputs (in my case optical for the PS4 and USB for the PC).
Not Sempiternal, but I received mine. I love it. I use it with Audio Technica A990Z headphones for now but I can't wait to try it with the 6XX. At times I catch myself thinking how I've never heard certain instruments sound so real on a recording. I can think of bass pluck where i could hear the reverberation and how it was interacting with the wood casing of the instrument. Vocals, string instruments, cymbals, and much more comes to life. It has a definite 3D element to it and can feel "live". The sound isn't harsh at all, very smooth and a joy to listen to.
Please take my review with a grain of salt though. I've had great speaker systems before but this is my first headphone amplifier of this class. I have to say I couldn't be more pleased. Not sure I'm going to have any use for the CTH I ordered.
Nope sorry, still just an expensive paperweight sitting on my desk.
I couldn't really provide you with much insight into how it sounds anyway, this is my first amp/dac & decent headphone purchase.
There are heaps of reviews around the place of it now, the majority are extremely positive.
Still trying to decide if i should get the R2R.11. Arghhhh
Hello, i overlooked your post..
I've been reading alot about the R2R.11 lately and that stopping me to buy it.. I've read about the pop/clicks between songs. Have you experienced this?
I get the pops and they're not very loud. They don't bother me. Maybe it's because I've been dealing with the same issue on my Emotiva processor forever, and those ones are loud!
I too have the R2R 11, and they're excellent as long as you're willing to wait a little based on their current stock.
The pop is there but it doesn't bother me that much. Only down side to the NFB 11.28 and the R2R 11 is that they both lack analog inputs, which is a bummer since that means you can't just use the amp component of the amp/dac combo. They do however have three digital inputs, I just don't understand why it lacks some kind of analog input.
What Emotiva? I'm eyeing on Emotiva Stealth DC-1 as well... Jotumheim, DC-1 and the Audio GD. This is killing me. The one thing stopping me with Audio GD is the popping sound. That flaw would be annoying for me... :(
Does the pop/click occurs on between songs on every files you feed to it? Some people say the pop/click occurs when the file change sample rate. If that is the case i might have no problem since my usual files are 16/44..
No worries on waiting.. What do you mean you can use the amp component? Does both can be a DAC dedicated or AMP dedicated? I might use the amp on my Stereo system as well but not sure if possible.. Since my source is a Android TV feed with an external HD using Kodi..
You can use the dac by itself but you cant use the amp by itself as it has a pre-amp out but not an analog input.
If you're trying to hook it up to a set of speakers, there shouldn't be a problem.
If you want to hook it up to your vinyl record player, you have to buy an annoying analog to digital adapter.
In other words, the NFB 11.28 and R2R 11 can't be used as a dedicated amp but can be used for all others.
Thanks. I'm fine with that though. I have my phono on my tube pre. I just want a seperate which i can use on desktop for digital files and on stereo if i need to. I have Tube dac already but i might sell it as the R2r.11 might be an upgrade from Maverick D2.. Though that pop/click is stopping me to buy it and thinking if i just stretch my budget for DC-1 or Jot.. These two have good after market value than other Chi-FI stuff.So i'm still wondering. Hahah is it really worth it for the price?
The Jot might be slightly better as just a standalone amp due to it's power output and the balanced out/inputs.
But the R2R 11 has a better DAC and is just overall better value, which you're going to have to decide for yourself.
The R2R 11 will is about 350 before shipping compared to the Jot (400) plus your choice of DAC so there is a price difference to consider as well.
Check out the reviews of what others like myself has to say about them and you should have a better understanding I hope.
Thanks man.. I've been thinking about this for the past weeks. Due to that pop/click it made me think twice. I'm annoyed with this kind of flaw in audio. I'll update you guys once i decided. The R2R.11 for me is 370+ USD including shipping. Let see. I have a week to decide. :D
Pretty sure it's only when the sample rate changes
My HD6XX will deliver by tomorrow and NFB 11.28 within 2 weeks. :) I can chime in my thoughts then if you like.
My HD6XX are on the way too, probably a week out hopefully.
I ended up getting the R2R-11, similar to the NFB but with a R2R ladder dac.
Right on, let,me know what you think please.
Just checked my tracking & it arrived in Aus yesterday, so will definitely have it by the weekend fingers crossed.
Spewing. Looks like I wont get them until Monday. 5 days to travel half way around the world to Aus, 10 & counting to get something delivered from the other side of the country. Local postage here is terrible....
Lol...where u live!? Still waiting to get an email that mine has shipped, here in California.
I wont get it today, tomorrow is the weekend, so no deliveries, they'll drop a slip in my letter box Monday & I'll pick them Tuesday. 2 weeks with local post lol.
The Hd6xx or your NFB Amp?
Cans, I've had the amp/dac for like 3 months now, just sitting there collecting dust.
oh no, seems like there is an issue with my package, ordered mine on 23JUL, but the tracking is stucked at DEC 2 - PROCESSING COMPLETED AT ORIGIN . Hopefully its not a lost parcel......will check with MD team.
Oh...my mistake then.. I had to burn in my cans right away. They sounded cloustrophobic out of the box. Got them this past Monday. What helped me was using a Youtube video of pink noise, found a 10 hour one and used that a couple times. Cans sounded a lot better after that. Read that it takes almost 1000 hours though before their full potential, as it is now for me, about maybe 150 hours , they sound smooth!
Ok, so I finally have my new cans running through my R2R-11.
Now, I'm no audiophile, but straight out of the box, the sound is, to put it bluntly, fucking incredible.
So much detail to songs that I've never heard before.
I can't wait to see how the sound evolves after a few months use.
Very happy with both purchases.
Nice thanks man! How was it with the hd650