Sep 19, 2018726 views

I recently bought the Massdrop version of the 6XX but now Im confuse because I find out I will not get the best of them soundwise because I need a amp. I will use it mainly with my phone and tablet. What type of amp you guys recommend?

Please Help
ltopper, velomatt, and 4 others

Schiit Fulla 2- besides the awesome name it is a great and well built dac/amp for only $99
Get a DAP fiio or other that has high gain but i would not take a hd 6xx outside with it openback leakage, just around the house.
Well if your tab is in Ipad, youre pretty much good without an amp. I was running my HD6XXs on my Ipad before I got my Audio GD amp. Even though there is an improvement in quality, but its subtle. Nothing huge. Yes, you wont be able to get them very loud without an amp. Even though i found the volume from my Ipad Air 2 sufficient.
Hey, don't be upset. I would recommend the Audioquest Dragonfly Red, in terms of portability. I know it might be to late, but the the Massdrop Sennheiser HD58X Jubilee is a great set of can if you don't want to invest in more powerful amps.
Thanks man, I heard about those headphone. I was not a very happy man when I try the 6xx, they sound flat and very low in range and quality. I rexen bought a small amp (EarStudio ES 100-24 bit) price at $99 in Amazon and gave them a little push but no enough that I was surprise. My other Seenheiser HD 4.30 sound way better than my 6xx :( but I’m guessing is because those dont require too much amp. I’m still looking for a better portable amp so thanks for the advise.
FT, this is probably maddeningly confusing - don't let it drive you crazy. It sounds like what you need is a small, simple amp to get the volume up loud enough to enjoy, and that you can carry with you easily. The Topping NX1 is $40 or less, and will do the trick nicely. I hadn't tried it before with my 6XX, but I tested it and it works great.
This will make your new headphones usable right now, and let you enjoy their great sound. You can get into all the confusing madness of DACs and amps at your leisure later on.
This depends on which phone you are using it with but generally you will need an external amp or a dac/amp combo to make the most of these. If you are using these at a desktop I would suggest something like the JDAC O2 amp to start with to drive these, for portable FiiO makes a bunch of solutions that will be able to drive these somewhat sufficiently.
This really all depends on how much you are willing to spend and what type of sound you are going for.
Massdrops Xduoo XD-05 looks like a decent pick for mobile use and it's still fairly affordable but it's both a dac and amp. That said if you just need an amp I believe the objective 2 is technically supposed to be a portable amp as it has 9v battery terminals by creative commons dictates. Otherwise if you're spending that much you may perhaps be better served by selling the 6xx and getting the 58x which do sound great off of mobile devices. Not quite the same thing and I understand that but I understand that but I own both and I am equally satisfied by both so I just use my 58x when I'm not sitting at my computer.
Not sure why people are suggesting you buy a $300+ DAC - you don't need a $300 DAC.
Grab a FiiO E10K on Amazon for $70 or a Schiit Fulla 2 for $99 and call it a day.
I love my Shiit Fulla, bargain for $99
FT, Your headphones are rated at 300 ohm, this means that you will need to look at something that will drive them. Next thing you need to think about is the built in DAC that your device has, will this give you the sound you are looking for. The reason for that is because a portable AMP can be found at a cheaper price than a comparable DAP (DAC AMP combo). I have DAC's, AMP's and DAP's and have found that some work better than others depending on the headphones I am using it with. My 598 SE is fine connected to my phone or tablet directly but with a little more power i get a cleaner sound. My 1More triple driver over ear will also work but there is a marked difference in sound and volume with a DAP. My LCD 2 Classic Closed back needs a DAP (the only reason I use a DAP and not just a AMP is because I am not fond of my phones built in DAC). With the 6XX you get the classic Sennheiser sound quality and want to make sure that you are pairing it with something that is going to take advantage of that. I would suggest that if there are any people you know that have portables see if they will let you use it. The audio you get will change from product to product and brand to brand. Testing out as many as you can will give you an idea of what sounds better with those headphones based on the sound quality you enjoy. Nothing about this hobby is easy nor cookie cutter, peoples audio tastes can vary widely which is why there are so many different types of headphones and equipment out there. It doesn't have to be a long drawn out process but I would suggest that you try as many parings as possible in order to find the sound you enjoy. Buying quality headphones is but a piece of the puzzle, the rest is figuring out what your audio taste is and finding a DAP to go with it. Sorry this could not have been a clear cut answer but to be honest, anyone that will tell you to choose one thing over another is just basing that on their opinion and tastes, which might not be the same as yours. I have plenty of equipment and headphones sitting on my shelf that I purchased based on other what I have read and others have told me just to find out it is not what I like. Save yourself some money and when you can, sample the things you are interested in before you buy it because this can quickly become a money sinkhole. I hope this helps, if you have any other questions just ask and I will do my best to reply as quickly as possible.
The Massdrop Cavalli/Grace Amp/DAC is pretty cool. $379
Not especially mobile though is it?
Not for jogging.
If you're looking for a portable solution the centrance dacport hd or dacportable are options. I use a geshilli labs amp with smsl su-8 to drive mine and am happy. They have an smsl dac and amp combo up on massdrop right now that I bet would be great.
Now all you punk-asses are really piss'n me off ;- )
First off, punk-ass number one, @futuretrunks bought a set of headphones because he read a few thousand comments on MD assuring him he'd hear the voice of Ganesha as soon as he put 'em on. Apparently Ganesha had the day off when FT finally plugged in? FT then returns to the scene of the crime, where the faithful explain he's also gonna need a headphone amp if he wants to make it all the way to Nirvana.
Undeterred, FT humbly beseeches his fellow Pilgrims: "Oh help-eth me, fellow travelers--all is darkness yet I seek-eth the light! I implore you good fellows, which way is the light?"
But is poor FT shown the light? Nay, he is taunted by devils, confused by the lame of mind and deceived by peddlers of vile serpent oil! Oh-woe is poor FT--who will save him?!!!
Will it be the sincere but hard of reading @mesozoic or the well-intentioned, but no seer of signs himself @dcofficehack? Nay, nay it won't! Because poor FT had previously cried out "I am a weary traveler with mobile needs, who roams my lonely path with but a phone and tablet! I have no desk to lay-eth heavy components upon, particularly those that require-eth tethering to a cursed wall socket!"
Perhaps FT will be saved by the mad words of @mindhead1 who taunts poor FT with the suggestion that he sacrifice his beloved 6XXs to the fiery waste heap of Mistaken Audio Purchases, and instead lay out yet more shekels for a pair of 58X Jubilees!
"Oh spare me the cost of duplicate gear" cries FT, "for I am a poor man with limited funds and many are those who seek to separate me from them!"
Then enters the kindly but misinformed @Cole104 who realizes FT's mobile realities and suggests he seeketh the great prophet Oppo--he of the sacred HA-2 cult; a device capable of singing the very songs of Lord Brahma himself! Sadly, though, the kingdom of Oppo is no more!
Is poor FT to wonder the wasteland of mediocre sound quality for all of time?
Possibly, but if he'd dropped a few more clues on us at the outset, I suspect his journey would be two or three exits shorter. It would have been nice if he'd mentioned what type of phone and tablet his burning bush had lead him to in the first place!
Let's guess it's an iPhone 8s and a prior version iPad Air (pretty sure it ain't, but that's what I have in front of me right now). I say an iPhone 8 (and up) is plenty capable of driving a pair of 6XXs as is, right out of the box. And I also say, those phones will drive a pair of 4XXs too, as will the late model iPad Air. I've tried both just now and don't find any appreciable difference between either device or headphone. Yes, I had both sources turned up full, but I maintain, in a reasonably quiet environment, that's enough volume to clearly hear everything there is to hear on a given track. In this instance, I was listening to Alabama 3's "Woke Up This Morning" from Exile on Coldharbour Lane (aka: that song from the Sopranos), which is all over the place musically speaking, and a good song to evaluate cans or speakers.

Now if, buy chance, poor FT finds himself among a clamoring throng of Philistines who won't shut the hell up and let him listen to his tunes, then I allow, there could be a problem. And that problem would be worsened if FT was lugging around a low-quality phone or pad, especially any from the cursed land of the Androids. I further allow, that while listening to a favorite song (as above) one might wish for more volume than is otherwise necessary (I know I certainly do). In those instances, a portable headphone amp is very helpful.
What kind of amp is less important!
I do happen to have an Oppo HA-2, and it does allow me to listen to music on either device much louder than without it (and I enjoy that immensely). But If one believes louder music is better music, they are undoubtedly their village's favorite idiot. On the other hand, if one believes louder music can be more enjoyable to listen to, well, they're only half-dumb. But everyone can agree that louder music is better in noisy environments, or when you're trying to block out specific sounds in that environment (a boss, an ex-wife, a girlfriend). Loud music is also better to dance to and makes others look at you more sympathetically when you start bobbing your head up and down like an idiot .
But where does all this leave poor FT?
Here's the deal, if you think you need an amp, get one, it can't hurt anything. You can spend a lot of time looking for suggestions as to which is best, but the audio salad you have to trudge through on MD will never yield a Grail solution in any classification. Second, buying shit on MD is better suited to the well informed than the ill-informed. Get a few clues and suggestions here, and then head over to Amazon and read a few reviews on the two or three amps you've narrowed down. People on Amazon are less zealous about audio gear than folks on MD (ie: they lie less), and damn near anything you buy on Amazon can be returned if you mess up (not always the case here).
Obviously money is a limiting factor. If you plan on replacing your sub-par phone or pad with something better, you might be willing to spend more dough on a better amp. If you're stuck with that phone and pad for a while, an expensive DAC/Amp is only going to take you so far. I'm mentioning a DAC/Amp at this point because a combo unit paired with a good source and good files, is where you probably want to end up at some point in the future, depending on budget.
To recap, any damn amp will make your source louder, after that you're on your own--no matter what you may read to the contrary on MD!
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Thanks (and don't call me dude)!
Good to know. You should share that with @FutureTrunks , I understand he's look'n for one. I'm sure he'd appreciate any info you could provide!
The Audioquest Dragonfly Red is a good portable option, as well. Dragonfly Black is also an option but, in my opinion, if I'm going to spend the money, get the Red.
I use Chord Mojo with my Focal Elex so maybe not apple to apple since your headphones are different but you will not have an issue running them with Mojo.
I suggest finding an amp you are interested in and try it out and see if you like them. I had the fist generation oppo HA-2 and sounded really good but Mojo is in another leage. It’s even better than my oppo HA-1 so much so that I use it in my stereo system as well using HA-1 as preamp.
Good luck and I am sure you will find an amp to enjoy your headphones.
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Yeah, me too—I always recommend Bentley and Maserati whenever young people ask about their first cars. I let them decide how they’re going to pay for ‘em ;- )
Bentley and Maserati ? I think Mojo is more like maybe a VW GTI or at most an Audi A3 :)
I got the Schiit Fulla 2 Dac/amp combo and it powers my HD 6xx, HD 58x, and a pair of 250 ohm headphones that I have fine.
Most any amp will do. I own the Schiit Magni 2 and SMSL AD 18. Both do the job.
You may also want to look at the 58X Jubilee. It's a lower impedence set that is easier to drive from a mobile device.
If you want to use it portably, look into the Oppo HA-2, its a portable DAC/amp that has gotten rave reviews, has input for android or apple connectors (please double check that but I think its correct), and would allow you to use with your mobile devices.
FWIW you won't get the most out of most headphones, the reason the Senns want more is their impedance and lack of sensitivity. 300 ohms with a spike to about 600 in the bass means OTL (output transformerless) will swing more power because they have high voltage. If you are willing to look into desktop, I highly recommend Cavalli, and Woo. Cavalli is more neutral, Woo tends to be bassy and warm, but its really just a slight flavor.
I remember when I first started kissing girls--turned out there was a lot more to all that too! Live and learn ;- )
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In general, high impedance Senns love tube amps. But, that's a part of this hobby that takes a bit more to get into and setup. Starting out, the 02 amp is a great budget desktop amp. Powerful, clean, small footprint, etc.
I agree with @rastus on the iFi nano (it's what I daily) as it included a good DAC and amp for its price point and a slew of other features you won't find in this bracket. It'll push the 6XX to very loud levels and with pretty good control so you should be left quite satisfied until you move up to something that's much beefier.
You really want a DAC/amp, the iFi Nano iDSD Black Label; portability & power & performance, would be a good choice:
More features plus Bluetooth & more$$:
After this you move into a desktop or "trans-portable" size, for the power the 6XX really wants.
I actually have the iFi Nano BL - how well does the it drive the 6XX? I was concerned it wouldn't be enough to unlock them fully, so to speak. I'm in the process of researching a desktop amp for these (will be my first desktop amp) and am torn between trying out a tube amp (such as the bottlehead crack, or Schiit Vali/Valhalla) or something more like the nfb-11.
Ideally I could get something that is strong enough to drive these cans, but can also pair well with lower impedance units such as my current 1More triple driver closed-back, and things like the HE4XX.