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Match Portable Dac/Amp to DT 770 Pro 250 ohm

Ma-ik

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Hello everyone..

After a few days of searching, I have a hard time deciding which Headphone Amp/Dac will fit me for the DT 770 pro 250 ohm along with a MacBook Pro.
Manufacturers specify data in different forms and it is difficult to understand what suits me best.
I usually listen through a desktop amp dac I have... the reason I am looking for a portable amp dac is because I sometimes like to lie down and edit recordings on a laptop with the DT 770 and I do not want to be dependent on electricity.. I want something portable to drive them to their full potential (or at least as much as possible).

These are the options that I think will suit:

Apogee Groove
THX Onyx
DACPORT HD
Hidizs S9 PRO
EarMen Sparrow
Violectric chronos (anyone tried?)
Fiio KA3

And these are the bigger options:

iFI hip-dac2
ifI NANO iDSD black
Fiio Q3
Topping NX4 DSD

I am looking for a sound that is as detailed as possible, also volume is important to me and it is second priority in the priority, another thing that is important to me is the size of the device.

I would love recommendations and opinions ... Thanks
 

RickSanchez

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The first thing you have to do is figure out the power requirements for the DT 770 Pro 250 ohm, specific to your listening levels:
That will likely eliminate a lot of options. It's possible the Topping NX4 could work but again, it depends on the SPL that you're trying to get to.
 

staticV3

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Powering the DT 770 250Ω is very much a voltage game, making things easier.
Here's how much it needs:
Screenshot 2022-02-09 140743.png

Here's how much each DAC can put out via 3.5mm single-ended:
  • Apogee Groove: 4.6Vrms
  • Topping NX4 DSD: 4.2Vrms
  • DACPORT HD: 4.1Vrms
  • iFI hip-dac2: 3.2Vrms
  • ifI NANO iDSD black: 3.0Vrms
  • Fiio Q3: 2.4Vrms
  • THX Onyx: 2.0Vrms
  • Hidizs S9 PRO: likely 2.0Vrms
  • EarMen Sparrow: 2.0Vrms
  • Fiio KA3: 2.0Vrms
  • Violectric chronos: likely 1.0Vrms
All this is relevant only if you'd like to keep your Beyer stock. If modified to allow for balanced operation, you would have many more options to choose from.
 

Bumer

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Wrong impedance headphone choice. Why not 32ohm or 80ohm DT770? They all sound petty much the same.
 

solderdude

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I want something portable to drive them to their full potential (or at least as much as possible).

Then you will need an amp that can provide 5V into 300 ohm (100mw) this will allow peaks of 115dB SPL (so around 95dBA average)
Most likely an amp with 50mW rating in 300ohm will already be sufficient (112dB peaks)

Just make sure the amp is specified in 300 ohm because 50mW in 32 ohm is just 8mW in 300 ohm.

Just look at the spec sheets of amps you are interested in.
 

yigitboy

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Then you will need an amp that can provide 5V into 300 ohm (100mw) this will allow peaks of 115dB SPL (so around 95dBA average)
Most likely an amp with 50mW rating in 300ohm will already be sufficient (112dB peaks)

Just make sure the amp is specified in 300 ohm because 50mW in 32 ohm is just 8mW in 300 ohm.

Just look at the spec sheets of amps you are interested in.
If our amp is able to supply enough power for that peaks, that means we have enough headroom?
And what if the amp does not have enough power for that peaks? Does it clip or the bass lacks?
 

solderdude

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If our amp is able to supply enough power for that peaks, that means we have enough headroom?
And what if the amp does not have enough power for that peaks? Does it clip or the bass lacks?

Headroom is 'extra power' on top of what is needed.
So when you want 3dB headroom you will need 200mW in 300ohm.

When you never reach those peaks it does not matter.

When you are clipping the amp (peaks will be 115dB SPL and the headphone already will be softclipping) then only those short peaks will clip.
The rest of the music will not. This is not as easy to hear as clipping in a DAC.
You need substantial clipping before the sound turns nasty.

For the headphone to sound 'bass light' it would have to have a power rating of 10mW or less in 300 ohm and would be clipping and not sound great at louder than 'normal' levels.
Because of a lack of power and equal loudness countours a headphone could be perceived as not having much bass but in the end this is merely because it cannot go loud enough without clipping (sounding nasty)

Most (but not all DT770 types, there are several) will not be bass light. Only to bassheads they might.

There are measurable (and audible) differences between the various impedance DT770's b.t.w.
Although Beyerdynamic suggests that the only difference is impedance (so sensitivity in dB/V not in efficiency in dB/mW) there are more differences than just that.
 
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