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Loving my 6xx, and looking for some improvement, and advice, on kind of a budget here.
I'm running my 6xx through my Denon AVR 1713 (headphone out) outputting from my ONKYO C-7030 CD Player. It sound pretty amazing already, but I want a dedicated headphone amp and by price/quality my eyes are on the Shiit Magni 3.
Do you think going from the Denon AVR to the Shiit Magni 3 would be a big improvement?
Thank you so much in advance
Have you listened to the cans directly from the Onkyo headphone jack on the front?
Not yet really. Got them just yesterday night and only had a few minutes to run them, but I will today, far more relaxed. Was thinking about the same, in fact, though I think the volume level is limited in the Onkyo.
I have the same Onkyo CD Player and I find that I have more than enough volume.
What I have done is use the Toslink out to an input on my control receiver. I use the Line Out to connect to a Schiit Vali 2 which is located next to my favorite listening chair. I chose the Vali because I enjoy the tube effect.
Oh that’s neat...
So.. you Do use a dedicated amp.
I wonder if the difference the avr and the shiit one is noticeable enough
I have an A/V setup for powering my speakers but that doesn't sound as good as CD to Vali to 6XX. I prefer to avoid any extraneous electronics and switching when I need a true eargasm.
I have no idea how the addition of some Schiit would affect how your ears would respond.
BTW - I'm a Classical music lover and that's 100% of my critical listening.
I don’t have that Denon but the Magni 3 has been great along with the Modi Multibit. It pairs well with my HD650 and even though some consider it slightly warmer for a solid state amp, it doesnt make the 650 any warmer to my ears. I even like it with the 700’s and 800S although eventually I‘ll settle on a nice tube amp for my 800S.
Well... for me it is Film music scores. You know... Williams, Goldsmith, Morricone. So for me clarity and separation are factors to consider. And of course love what the 6XX does to that music.
So the Magni3 is the best budget option to pair with the 6XX? of course all is finally subjective, but generally speaking.
I don't think it will be much difference at all. Denon tend to make good sounding gear.
You think so? In that case, what amp would be the next price/quality step ?
I haven’t tried enough amps in this price range to say definitively, but I researched a lot of amps before getting the Magni 3 and if it isn’t the best in that range, it’s deftinitely a contender. The Fulla 2 is a great little amp/DAC for a bit less but unless you want the options or portability of the Fulla I think the Magni 3 is more than worth spending the extra money on it.
You may also try ONKYO C-7030 -> MODI 2 -> MAGNI 3. That way you can benefit from the DAC outputs of your CDP. It may sound better/different. And you can use cables to get your preferred sound.
Personally I'd go with a tube amp if you're chasing a better sound.
I'm not sure why you'd bypass the DAC in the C-7030 as it is one of the best around. It's hard to beat a Wolfson 192 KHz / 24-bit converter.
Digital output from the C-7030 can be fed to a different/better DAC. The Wolfson 192/24 implemented in the C-7030 sounds very open, bright and clear. It can/tends to sound harsh in some instances. Conversely, there are advantages to an external stand alone DAC. Dedicated power supply, better discrete circuitry, more effective isolation, to name a few. For that I would say that a stand alone DAC using a Wolfson 192/24 (in a good design) may probably sound better than the C-7030. Here, the OP wanted an improvement from what he already has. Short of changing the DCP, trying another DAC may be workable, cost effective move. From what I know the C-7030 is moderately decent as a transport.
However, the OP's request was in reference for use with the HD6XX headset with a source other than streaming files. I have never heard the output from the headset jack on the Denon equipment so I cannot definitively state that adding an external headphone amp would be an improvement. I can state that the headphone amp in the C-7030 is not an ideal match for a 300Ω headset. The use of a Magni 3 or Vali 2 would be a better match as a first step, rather than starting an adventure of DAC-rolling.
Yep. Absolutely. That’s why I suggested to OP that he can also try the DAC with the Magni3.
Ive owned and heard the phone’s output of the C-7030. Not the final word in resolution or refinement. It’s a good player for the money but you can easily improve the sound by adding an external DAC. The Magni3 as ive mentioned would definitely improve the sound with the 6XX. And it will sound excellent with the MODI2.
It’s up to OP how far he wants to go. I wasn’t suggesting DAC rolling. You asked a question and I merely answered it. Nothing more.
So far OP hasn’t asked any questions so I figured he got the suggestion. Am leaving it as that. Enjoy yr 6XX.
thank you Aswald and @Lekoguy . Didn’t get the notifications for the last masseges, wierd. Anyway, at the moment in fact I just want to amplify what the Onkyo player gives me. It sound pretty good but when I crank up the volum to towards the top it starts to sound harsh and unpleasent. So at the moment I use my Denon AVR (just the analog amp section) which takes of that harshness and greater volume and becoms so much involving, for me its the first time I experience this level of inmersive clarity, and loving how the 6XX handle the highs, because I’m very sensitive to highs and I appreciate enormously when they not hurt without having to lose that clarity. BUT I think it’s time to get a dedicated headphone amp, I mean the 6XX ask for it hehe, and I guess a dedicated amb, specially one as de magni or the vali, should sound better than a AVR amp, right??
My primary listening is film score music, and I only listen CDs (originals of course, love collecting them) John Williams, Zimmer, Goldsmith, etc.. and for that purpose, which would be a better match for my Onkyo and my 6XX; Magni3 or Vali ? or maybe even a better option in that price range.
Thanks so much guys.
If you check out reviews and the opinions of the gang at Head-Fi, you will find there isn't much, if any, which can compete with the Magni or Vali in that price range. The same can also be said in higher price ranges.
Though contemporary reproduction systems can be truly magnificent, we are still at the mercy of the original recordings. To that end, I have ordered a Schiit Loki. You might check it out. Many consider the concept to be old fashioned or even heresy. To me, it's only logical. When it arrives I'll share my reactions.
Comparing the Magni and Vali, my preference is the Vali. I don't know if you are familiar with "tube rolling." The sonic characteristics of the amplifier can be influenced be the choice of tube(s) used. That is a feature available with the Vali. The Magni, being a solid state design, is fixed in its tonal signature.
If you really want to go all out, there is the Schiit Mjolnar 2. The best of both worlds.
Thanks... Well.. I not very fond of the idea of spending on something just to allowing me keep spending. So I just want to buy the best amp I can get in the price range of 100-150 and settle there for a couple of years maybe and then the next step.
So about the Vali.. being an hybrid is it true it doesn’t have a “real” tube quality sound? at least that’s what I’ve read.
Well, it certainly doesn't tubify as much as a full tube preamp and power amp. It does impart some "warmth" to the tonal structure, however.
There is absolutely nothing wrong or lacking with the Magni. It is a exceptional pairing with the 6XX!
Well... I think it’ll be the Magni3 by now
Thank you guys!