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Audient id14 MKII vs Desktop DAC/AMP for Apple Music listening

rexbinary

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Joined
Nov 6, 2023
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Location
Texas
Hi all,

First post here. I currently own an Audient id14 MKII audio interface that I use on my Mac mini M2 Pro for recording electric guitar. I have also been using my id14 with my Beyerdynamic DT 990 Edition 250 ohm headphones for Apple Lossless music listening.

Would there be any benefit to using a desktop DAC/Amp instead of my id14 just for my Apple Lossless music listening? Is something like a FIIO K11 considered an upgrade over my id14 for headphone listening? Is a desktop DAC/Amp a waste since I already own the id14?
 

staticV3

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Aug 29, 2019
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Hi @rexbinary! Welcome to ASR.

The iD14 MKII's only real weakness as a DAC+Headphone Amp is its unusually high output impedance of 22Ω.

Luckily, this doesn't matter when used with high impedance headphones like the DT990 250Ω.

In case you switch to low (and variable) impedance headphones or IEMs sometime in the future, then it may be worth either adding an external Headphone Amp to your Audient, or replacing it with a dedicated DAC+Headphone Amp.
 
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rexbinary

rexbinary

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Nov 6, 2023
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Location
Texas
@staticV3 Thank you. It seems like I'm good where I am at. I didn't really feel like my setup was currently underperforming anyway, but there are those shiny things out there that are always so tempting.
 

jonwb

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Oct 7, 2021
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I bought a Topping L30 II HP amp to bypass my Audient iD22 HP amp. Has made a world of difference, even with my Senn HD6xx 300 ohm HPs. Again, if you're using lower impedance phones, you're better off getting a separate amp.
 
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