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How to connect headphone-amplifier to my soundcard

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max1602

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It is a little more extensive in functionality and users often switch from the Babyface to the ADI-2, but the devices can also complement each other, that depends entirely on the use and your requirements.
But I'd rather refer you to the RME forum, which is very good for questions like this. The user ramses is well versed in this area and with RME devices.
Many thanks. I wil start to inform myself.
I‘ll first get a basic grasp of dac vs interface and the needs of one…

I haven‘t ever seen a dac in real life. Like an rme one or a similar product…
 

ZolaIII

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Yes I did go to my speakers through the rca out after I went rca into it on the input. But then the problem was, that I couldn’t listen to my headphones without the speakers playing as welll…
I don't think hitting the off switch on amplifier is the end of the world but what do I know.
 
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max1602

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I don't think hitting the off switch on amplifier is the end of the world but what do I know.
Sorry I think you misunderstood my display of things. I didn't intend an error in telling things.
I hope you don't misunderstand. I am thankful for this conversation.
Rarely have I seen so much audio knowledge as here.

I bought the headbox-s2.
I have a steinberg-ur22.

I connected both through the line out of my steinberg ur22 to the headbox rca-in.
Then I went out of the headbox through the pass-through into my active hs8 speakers by yamaha.

The only way to switch between speakers and and headphones, was to kill the speakers by switching off their power, through pressing the power switch on the back of the hs8.

That's too much for me for everyday use.
I want a system, that's at least near to the experience of an audio-interface.
 
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max1602

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Is there a review of the apollo series on this forum?
Is there measurements of UAD-Apollo series on this forum?

I couldn't find any...

I feel so much craving for a UAD-Interface.

I make music since some time. I always heard about the myth of UAD being so good in replicating analogue into digital-plugins.

And now that I am at the point of buying a better interface. I still got this myth inside me. "GET UAD GET UAD GET UAD"
Maybe some of you, have been at a similar point...

I feel like, I nearly subconsciously want to talk myself into buying a UAD interface...

Sorry already found the following:

 
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ZolaIII

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HS8's aren't bad and long lasting. They are balanced only which complicate and inflates things in the end (financially).
Which Apollo series?
 

ZolaIII

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@max1602 what do you hope to achieve? How would you be using the gear? Trough PC or? I don't think using separate DAC amp combo for AKG K702 is a bad idea and even 2V out unbalanced dongle DAC should be enough to drive them (they aren't demanding). You have EQ pressets for them trough EQ-APO, Wavelet and cetera. On the speakers behalf when you decide to retire old ur22 and or expand them with sub's go balanced DSP or interface. If you can return back that headphone amplifier and get refund it would be nice. A not bad dongle DAC can be found for 30~40$. If you do intend to use it with PC and want relatively portable DAC amp solution check how Sound Blasterx G6 fits your needs and if you can get it cheap.
 
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max1602

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I guess if I went with UAD Apollo Twin X for 1000,00 € I could buy a new Babyface Pro FS with the money instead and be happier, because I think the babyface has better conversion / portability.

But suddenly instead of 400,00 € we are talking about 1000,00 € instead...

I love my HS-8. I have no urge to change these lovely speaker.
 
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max1602

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I have six things to consider in the following order:

  1. Internal-Preamp Quality
  2. Headphone-Amplifier Quality
  3. Build-Quality
  4. Portability / the less frankensteiny the better...
  5. Build-Ethics
  6. Brand Preferences
I'm on a windows 10 machine. A surface pro 5 computer tablet. It's got enough power for my audio needs.
No need for upgrade here. I also am absolutely happy with akg-702. Beautiful cans in my opinion. Got recommended to me.

Also speakerwise hs-8 I am very happy.

Pricewise I am willing to go from 300,00 € to 800 €,00.
But I'd rather pay up to 600,00 €...

Thanks a lot for your help :)
I am not taking it for granted. Beautiful forum you people have here.

Sincerely
 

ZolaIII

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I guess if I went with UAD Apollo Twin X for 1000,00 € I could buy a new Babyface Pro FS with the money instead and be happier, because I think the babyface has better conversion / portability.

But suddenly instead of 400,00 € we are talking about 1000,00 € instead...

I love my HS-8. I have no urge to change these lovely speaker.
You really don't need an out of space DAC to drive active speakers with fine 90 dB SINAD power amplifier (eventually a tad less for stronger stage in HS8).
Do you need a multichannel and anolog inputs at all?
If not a mentioned G6 for headphones and Motu M2 interface for speakers.
If you do check Motu UltraLite-mk5.
That's budget good endurance/performance and not a bad brands. You can go and other way around for speakers and hopefully sub's (but staying on balanced) one day considering something like MiniDSP Flex balanced in 4/8 chenel configuration. It depends what you want to achieve really.
 
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max1602

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You really don't need an out of space DAC to drive active speakers with fine 90 dB SINAD power amplifier (eventually a tad less for stronger stage in HS8).
Do you need a multichannel and anolog inputs at all?
If not a mentioned G6 for headphones and Motu M2 interface for speakers.
If you do check Motu UltraLite-mk5.
That's budget good endurance/performance and not a bad brands. You can go and other way around for speakers and hopefully sub's (but staying on balanced) one day considering something like MiniDSP Flex balanced in 4/8 chenel configuration. It depends what you want to achieve really.
Thanks

I need one channel of analog-input for drum-machine, synth, guitar and eventually voice recordings...

I checked the m2 with julian krauses video. I do not like the preamp quality. It is definitely not sufficient, for what I want.
I do not need any multichannel at all.

Sorry but what is G6?

I checked motu-ultralite mk5.
I am under the impression in general RME has better internal preamp quality than the ultralite mk5. I get the feeling even the 1st-gen babyface pres sound clearer than motu mk5.

I guess the question comes to the following:
  • Babyface has superclean pres. But headphone amp is low
  • Audient has medium headphone amp, but I could if I want in the future replace internal pre- with say a used neve fake or something in real
  • UAD has API, Neve and SSL unison-emulation for preamp recording and medium headphone amp + many nice included plugins, which I for sure would get plenty use inside the thomann bundle... - https://www.thomann.de/intl/universal_audio_apollo_solo_usb_heritage_ed.htm (For example I have no plugin of the following, and would loove a nice emulation on my pc: Neve Preamp, Space Echo, API Preamp, Studer Tape, SSL Eq, SSL Master Bus, 610-Preamp)
I am already 90% settled on the following:

  1. babyface 1st-gen + sabaj a10h / babyface used
  2. Audient id44 / new
  3. UAD apollo-solo heritage usb / new 500,00 €
--> Roughly 500,00€ + cables.

But I think with the RME Babyface 1st gen, I can make the cleanest raw recordings of drum-machines. And then I can still get UAD-Spark if I want to mess with their line of products in the plugin domain.

I will rather get 2 devices (bf and sabaj) and have cleaner recordings, than one device with a good internal hp-pre and less clean recording capabilities.

It's so difficult.
One of the most difficult investing decisions I ever had in music.
 
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max1602

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In general I would love to use the following with the babyface instead of the sabaj.

Lake-People G103:



I am pretty sure it has substantially better build-quality + made in germany like the babyface, which I value.

But I have no Idea if I can usefully use the two without the addition of a seperate monitor-controller or a mixer...
 
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max1602

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I have decided on babyface + sabaj.

The audio-examples on the following page were the tipping point in positive terms:


I am sure this combination will satisfy my needs. 340,00 € for the combination incl. cables is also a veryy good price for that amount of quality :)
 

ZolaIII

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Ufff creative Sound Blasterx G6 for headphones as separate and Moto M2 as I/O interface ADC/DAC for speakers. UltraLite-mk5 whose suggestion for 8 chenel I/O interface but you said you don't need it anyhow. So about 350€ both or even less if you find good prices. Normal brands and OEM's and good availability most part with regular warranty. Rather good implementations with about 112 dB SINAD each (more than enough) and enough power on headphone amplifier side to spare or drive higher impedance lower SPL headphones with it and still rather portable.
 
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max1602

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Ufff creative Sound Blasterx G6 for headphones as separate and Moto M2 as I/O interface ADC/DAC for speakers. UltraLite-mk5 whose suggestion for 8 chenel I/O interface but you said you don't need it anyhow. So about 350€ both or even less if you find good prices. Normal brands and OEM's and good availability most part with regular warranty. Rather good implementations with about 112 dB SINAD each (more than enough) and enough power on headphone amplifier side to spare or drive higher impedance lower SPL headphones with it and still rather portable.
You mean motu m2 + soundblaster or babyface + sabaj?
 
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max1602

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Jeez just tried uad plugins for 1st time in my life. Best plugins I ever used. So now I am confused again...

Thing is I am not very keen on being caught in the spark subscription system. But I thought that I only go into spark when I record something and the other time, stay with my current normal vsts...

I don't really want a apollo solo or twin x...
 

AnalogSteph

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Before we're totally getting ahead of ourselves, let's briefly return to where this all got started...
I have a Steinberg-UR22 Audio-Interface. (Is it an underground-resistance Interface???^^)
UR22s were fairly popular at one point, they're mechanically solid but electronically meh interfaces (modest CS4270 codec and mediocre microphone input noise performance - it does have MIDI I/O, I'll give it that). Is this the first version, not the MkII? The current version is the UR22C which is an improvement but still rather "too little too late". You can get fairly low latency out of them apparently. The CS4270 has recently been discontinued, I hope Steinberg / Yamaha uses the redesign opportunity to integrate a better codec and improve the mic preamp.
I initially connected it to the output of the headphone-amp of the ur22. But it didn’t sound very good.
That should have worked. And the MkII version at least gives little reason for concern in terms of measured performance.

What sort of cable did you use? Can you elaborate on "it didn't sound very good"? Was it distorted, mono, no center (L-R only), ...?

A Babyface Pro is a great little interface, but seems a bit overkill just to solve the headphone problem.
 
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max1602

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Sorry for my very delayed answer, I am very grateful to you guys supporting audiophile tendencies in our world.

Bought the recommended sabaj for 2412023. Will report after christmas, on my satisfaction, with the amp...

I am unsure, if one gets better output of a soundcard, if one connects a hp-amp after the main-outs of an interface.
In comparison to the usual way, of connecting a hp-amp after the internal hp-amp of a soundcard...

Can someone elaborate on that question? thank you
 
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max1602

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Before we're totally getting ahead of ourselves, let's briefly return to where this all got started...

UR22s were fairly popular at one point, they're mechanically solid but electronically meh interfaces (modest CS4270 codec and mediocre microphone input noise performance - it does have MIDI I/O, I'll give it that). Is this the first version, not the MkII? The current version is the UR22C which is an improvement but still rather "too little too late". You can get fairly low latency out of them apparently. The CS4270 has recently been discontinued, I hope Steinberg / Yamaha uses the redesign opportunity to integrate a better codec and improve the mic preamp.

That should have worked. And the MkII version at least gives little reason for concern in terms of measured performance.

What sort of cable did you use? Can you elaborate on "it didn't sound very good"? Was it distorted, mono, no center (L-R only), ...?

A Babyface Pro is a great little interface, but seems a bit overkill just to solve the headphone problem.
Thanks for the detailed reply.
Yeah the steinberg ur22 is a funky piece of kit. Supersolid, superbad inputs... hahaha
But for the times it was made it was good. But a lot has changed in the interface-world since those days...

I used "normal" line cables....
I am getting a babyface mkI because of limited financial options...
I want to record nice drum-machine samples for me and others to use...

Which is one reason, why I want to use a BF.

But I am still getting bursts of unsureness...
All those nice emulations of analog outboard give me gas --> UAD.

I have little plugin-collection. Could very well use nice emus of outboard therefore...

I have 0 analog equipment. I don't plan on buying any ever. Cause of plugin power these days...

Still especially the included plugins in the apollo solo I could use very well. But then I read of big problems with Windows and UAD.. And I am a windows-guy...

So now I am planning on unpacking sabaj on christmas and then buying a used babyface mkI for sampling tasks...
 

staticV3

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I am unsure, if one gets better output of a soundcard, if one connects a hp-amp after the main-outs of an interface.
In comparison to the usual way, of connecting a hp-amp after the internal hp-amp of a soundcard...
I'm sorry, that's super confusing.

A dedicated headphone Amp is usually better than the headphone Amp built into audio interfaces, soundcards, or PC motherboards.

All headphone outputs can be used like a Line out to plug into external Amps.
OTOH, you should never use a Line out as though it was a Headphone out.

If your device has both Line out and Headphone out, then the Line out will generally have less noise and the headphone out can usually output higher voltages.
 
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max1602

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I'm sorry, that's super confusing.

A dedicated headphone Amp is usually better than the headphone Amp built into audio interfaces, soundcards, or PC motherboards.

All headphone outputs can be used like a Line out to plug into external Amps.
OTOH, you should never use a Line out as though it was a Headphone out.

If your device has both Line out and Headphone out, then the Line out will generally have less noise and the headphone out can usually output higher voltages.
Sorry for being confusing.

I a guy on youtube, mentioning the following:
He said that one can get better audio-quality from a headphone-amplifier, if one connects the main-outputs of a soundcard (which are normally connected to the speakers, through a line-connection) to the headphone-amplifier.

One therefore avoids the internal headphone-amp of the soundcard completely.
The man on youtube said, that with this way, one avoids the signal being amplified twice?




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