• WANTED: Happy members who like to discuss audio and other topics related to our interest. Desire to learn and share knowledge of science required as is 20 years of participation in forums (not all true). There are daily reviews of audio hardware and expert members to help answer your questions. Click here to have your audio equipment measured for free!

classy cheapo

Member
Joined
Jun 5, 2022
Messages
10
Likes
12
Hello everyone,
Noob here.

I would like to listen to good source material (high resolution FLACs, etc) on my AKG K612 Pro headphones.
Music genre is wide range classical from rumbling low church organ to high pitch violin.
It is important to me to get the sound as close as possible to master without any "improvements" between studio and my ears.

Would Topping DX3PRo+ be a good suit for my headphones? Any other suggestions?

Thank you very much for your help.
 

Dunring

Active Member
Forum Donor
Joined
Feb 7, 2021
Messages
226
Likes
235
It's a good choice and will be fine for the 120ohm 612. I just had a pair of those last week and they're good but the treble response is not that even for consistent sound. The 250 ohm DT880 has more detail and would be more accurate/consistent for instruments. Also the Hifiman HE400i is really good for music as well as the 250 ohm DT770 if you want closed back privacy.
I use an SMSL SP200 and M300 DAC and it's very revealing and detailed, also the Topping D10b is a great DAC. I just sold it because the M300 has filters and temperature filters that can help tame my brighter headphones without equalizing.
 

Katji

Major Contributor
Joined
Sep 26, 2017
Messages
3,001
Likes
2,221
I would like to listen to good source material (high resolution FLACs, etc) on my AKG K612 Pro headphones.
Music genre is wide range classical from rumbling low church organ to high pitch violin.
It is important to me to get the sound as close as possible to master without any "improvements" between studio and my ears.
No correlation between DAC/amplifier and type of music. DAC and amplifier "know" nothing about music, just converting digital audio data stream to analog signal and amplifying it. With high fidelity, i.e. least possible distortion and noise.
 
OP
C

classy cheapo

Member
Joined
Jun 5, 2022
Messages
10
Likes
12
No correlation between DAC/amplifier and type of music. DAC and amplifier "know" nothing about music, just converting digital audio data stream to analog signal and amplifying it. With high fidelity, i.e. least possible distortion and noise.
Variations in fidelity between different DACs/Amps do not bear impact on the sounds produced more or less often in different types of music?
 

HarmonicTHD

Major Contributor
Forum Donor
Joined
Mar 18, 2022
Messages
1,049
Likes
1,273
Variations in fidelity between different DACs/Amps do not bear impact on the sounds produced more or less often in different types of music?
No. No difference whatsoever for SOTA DACs which eg are recommended by Amir.


 

fieldcar

Addicted to Fun and Learning
Forum Donor
Joined
Sep 27, 2019
Messages
599
Likes
888
Location
Milwaukee, Wisconsin, USA
Variations in fidelity between different DACs/Amps do not bare impact on the sounds produced more or less often in different types of music?
It's usually the other way around in this day and age of >100dB SINAD audio components. Music content has much more to do with the fidelity of what you're listening to. Many classical pieces have a pretty horrible noise floor that's extremely audible. This is why most people say to simply buy anything 100dB+ SINAD and recommended here on ASR. There isn't much else to worry about. So, yeah, go grab the DX3Pro+

If you want a good idea of how audible harmonic distortion is, test your own ears. I've only got about -39dB, and I don't really care past that point.

I'd estimate a -20dB noise floor on this track.

Whereas this is much harder to get a feel for the noise floor. It's still there, but it's much better.
 
OP
C

classy cheapo

Member
Joined
Jun 5, 2022
Messages
10
Likes
12
Thanks to everyone for your kind advice!
I can confirm that Topping DX3PRo+ paired with AKG K612 Pro headphones sounds better than I expected. With a good source material one can start to doubt whether it is worth to go to live performances anymore. :)
Just kidding. Please continue to go to gigs since this is the main way to support artists and infrastructure which enables all this joy. :)
 
OP
C

classy cheapo

Member
Joined
Jun 5, 2022
Messages
10
Likes
12
Here is a short general overview for a fellow Linux users on how the DAC is set up on my Ubuntu 20.04.

Out of box it pretty much works plug & play. PulseAudio picks it up and starts with all its trickery like conversions, mixers, filters, cache & timing issues, etc.
To avoid PulseAudio you can set your media player to output directly to ALSA module of DAC. Specifically try to use "Direct hardware device without any software conversions" option. Also disable PulseAudio profile for DAC since PulseAudio can block your media player from using ALSA interface of your DAC.
This will allow you to hear fancy FLAC files as they were intended to be heard. If you play FLAC 192 kHz file your display should look like this (note PCM and 192):

flac.png


When it comes to playing DSD format files with DSF extension I manged to get "bit perfect" play with a setup of Music Player Daemon (MPD) with Cantata graphical user interface following these guidelines: https://thepenguin.eu/2017-12-22-mpd-and-dsd-files/
Problem stems from the fact that current Linux kernel recognizes only few DACs to stream native DSD.
MPD was the only player I managed to enable DoP trickery where DSD is encapsulated into PCM stream. Many DACs are smart enough to be able to recognize such encapsulation, extract DSD stream and play it on their end.
Other popular players either do not play DSF files at all (VLC) or play them by converting DSF files to PCM stream on the fly (Audacious, DeaDBeeF). In this case you are at the mercy of converter.
Note the difference between encapsulation of DSD bits into PCM stream and conversion to PCM format. In case of encapsulation DAC is able to extract bit by bit perfect DSD stream. In case of conversion DSD stream is converted to PCM stream by software on your PC.
This is how you display looks when your DAC plays DSF files without conversions (note DSD and 11.2 which stands for DSD256 format with 11.2896 MHz sample rate):

dsd.png
 
Last edited:
Top Bottom