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Beginner Help with where to start/what to buy


New Member
May 11, 2022
Hello All,

I'm new to this world, and feeling a bit out of depth. I could use some help either in what to research or what are some recommendations on what to buy.

My goal is to have a nice little music listening corner where I can swap between headphone and speaker listening as I feel the need.

Things I have:
Debut Reference DBR62 Bookshelf Speakers
Massdrop Sennheiser HD 6xx

Phone - right now just Spotify, will experiment with other sources after I have a system to experiment with.
Record Player - My old record player broke in a recent move, not including this in this budget right now. Planning on spending about $500.
TV - Streaming from PC to tv. I'm not as worried about having a home theater or audio quality from the TV as I hardly watch tv, but it would be nice to be able to play the audio from the speakers and not just from the TV speakers.

Debut Reference DBR62 Bookshelf Speakers [for my space I think they are fine, I will likely add a sub-woofer later]
Massdrop Sennheiser HD 6xx

This is the part I need help with. I'm getting lost in all the components. I know I need an amplification to drive the speakers and according to amirm's review "However, note the area I have circled. Impedance is high at about 8 ohms but the phase angle is quite acute at nearly 50 degrees. This means the speaker will ask for current when the output voltage is very low. So you better have a beefy amplifier to drive this speaker." So I know I need a "beefy" amp. My question is over some of these nice receiver's I see an whether it is enough to drive the speakers. Additionally, if I get a nice receiver, do I still want a dac for my phone source / TV source? Would the headphone port on some of these receiver's be nice enough to not have a separate headphone amp? When I see pictures of peoples Hi-Fi "Stack," is it a amplifier, receiver, dac, headphone amp, phono pre-amp and is that the kind of end goal? All in all, I feel like there are just too many components to research here and I need some help on narrowing what to research.

Budget - flexible 2k

  1. What is the ideal hi-fi "stack" made of? I need some help separating it out to better grasp what to research.
  2. What is the best use of the 2k at this stage? Should it go purely towards a receiver with thoughts of adding further components later? Is the receiver even the most important component at this stage?
  3. Does anybody have any recommendations on what to buy with a budget of 2k for the amplification/receiver/confusion stage? What would you buy with the main goal of listening to music while swapping between a record player, a phone, speakers, and headphones?
Thank you for any help! Definitely feel like I fell into the deep end.

Deleted member 46664

First ... common sense ... set a budget and stick to it.
Second ... don't buy into the garbage about fancy cables or pricey accessories. Stick to the basics,

For your first outing on this it sounds like you need an integrated amp with several inputs.
If you are counting on spinning vinyl, make sure it has a phono input with a built in pre-amp.
If you want to connect to it with your phone, you will need one with blue tooth, or you will need an external adapter which requires an input.
If you are streaming PC to TV you can use HDMI and get your audio from the tv set and you'll need in input for that.
It's always a good idea to have 1 extra input... cause you know you're going to buy something new.

So, best bet... shop for Integrated amps that have your required inputs and can drive 4 ohm speakers. Isolate several models and work out an average price. Don't go too far below the average because you'll just end up disappointing yourself. Don't go too far above it either as you'll just end up being ripped off.

A couple of early suggestions that have been well reviewed...
https://www.amazon.com/dp/B078WFDR8D (Sony)
https://www.amazon.com/dp/B07SNWJ95K (Cambridge Audio)
https://www.amazon.com/dp/B07XL4TM3M (Denon)

In general ... shop by features, compare by specs.
Last edited by a moderator:


Major Contributor
Forum Donor
Jul 21, 2019
There's no need to be a big spender around here; if your goal is faithful reproduction of your recordings, much can be done for surprisingly little money

Are you particularly committed to sticking with vinyl? It can be kind of an expensive pursuit, and the fidelity will always be limited.

Denon cinema receiver isn't exactly desktop-sized, but can be one of the least expensive ways to get Audyssey room correction, and it certainly makes later addition of a subwoofer easy. Downside is that some setup and configuration options are easier to do when there's a TV or monitor hooked up. Got a spare computer monitor with HDMI, that could work. And yes, these receivers can work very well with just two speakers. I'd opt for a model which is compatible with the Audyssey app for iOS or Android, as that allows you to do some pretty sophisticated things.
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