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Suggestions for first Mid-Fi listening system?

LightninBoy

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Regarding that first video: disregarding the massive non sequitur the video makes, how do the phrases "not uncommon to observe" and "anecdotal experiences ... suggests" make it into a research paper? If its just establishing the hypothesis, why would someone quote the hypothesis as evidence?
 

Chrispy

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Wow. Unless I missed something, that came across as unnecessarily rude given the tone of OP's question.

@Bling Guy McSqueezy there are quite a few factors that need to be specified. What is your listening space, what do you want to pay for the entire system, and, particularly assuming your budget is not unlimited, what do you prioritize (e.g. SPL, low frequency response of speakers for techno or chamber music, etc.)?
As to a record player/vinyl. A wood fire is less objectively effective than a modern furnace, but someone is not 'wrong' or 'stupid' for enjoying a fire pit (lthough if anyone tries to tell you that the wood fire will warm you better than a furnace because that method of creating heat is more organic, you should have serious questions.) Similarly, anyone who claims that vinyl magically preserves more of the real music because real music is not 1s and 0s is talking nonsense. In terms of accuracy of reproduction, longevity, consistency, noise floor, etc., a CD or high re- digital source is measurably superior. Nonetheless, the best system is the one that gives you the most enjoyment, and if you and your Dad would have a better time/experience listening to some old vinyl records because, e.g., you like the ritual, or find the pops/etc of the medium adds to the experience, then don't let anyone dissuade you or tell you that you are wrong. I myself would not consider spending $800 on an objectively inferior source over and against spending more on recordings or 'better' speakers - but what 'better' means is up to you, and depending on your budget and priorities, ymmv..

I just find the term "mid-fi" offensive, it comes from the audiophools to begin with.
 
OP
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I just find the term "mid-fi" offensive, it comes from the audiophools to begin with.
Why do you keep talking like that?
Aren't you taking this a bit far?
Our friends here already told you that I am new to this hobby and that English is my second language.
 

Chrispy

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Why do you keep talking like that?
Aren't you taking this a bit far?
Our friends here already told you that I am new to this hobby and that English is my second language.

I am not keeping track of you or your comments outside of this one. Fix it and I've got no issues. You do well with english, many "native speakers" don't do as well fwiw. Someone asked, I answered in the last post. I didn't realize it was you both times?
 

Pugsly

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I am not keeping track of you or your comments outside of this one. Fix it and I've got no issues. You do well with english, many "native speakers" don't do as well fwiw. Someone asked, I answered in the last post. I didn't realize it was you both times?
I had tried to give you the benefit of the doubt, as we all sometimes make posts when tired, cranky, or a few glasses of wine in, as I am right now, But please read post #20 and read between the lines. I don't disagree with you regarding the facts behind what you are saying, but the way you are saying it is unnecessarily antagonistic.
If that was too subtle, let me spell it out: I think you are being a prick.
 

Putter

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Mid-fi is a perfectly cromulent term.

It's only a problem when audiophools insist that the "mid" also has to relate to price as well.
I actually look at the opposite way. It is a term that people with expensive systems use to refer to those with much less expensive systems albeit not bottom of the barrel compact stereos for example. What it doesn't necessarily correlate with is the actual fidelity to the original music signal. Thus a mid-fi system is likely better than most compact stereos, but not necessarily worse than an expensive system. An example would be a high end turntable with vacuum tube amplification going to say Zu speakers which trade high efficiency for an uneven frequency response. Said system would likely be in the $10K range, but would not match in frequency response, S/N, Harmonic distortion, etc. than a well sorted $1K system with any old CD/BluRay player or other digital source and JBL 308 or Kali Audio or several other mid priced active speakers that our generous host, Amir, has measured.

Of course the guy with the $10K system might well love it and that's fine.
 

Chrispy

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I had tried to give you the benefit of the doubt, as we all sometimes make posts when tired, cranky, or a few glasses of wine in, as I am right now, But please read post #20 and read between the lines. I don't disagree with you regarding the facts behind what you are saying, but the way you are saying it is unnecessarily antagonistic.
If that was too subtle, let me spell it out: I think you are being a prick.
So are people who throw terms like mid-fi around?
 
OP
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By mid-fi I meant mid-level audio products. In terms of price and in terms of quality, etc. For example if we are talking about an amplifier - then a medium amplifier, at a medium price with medium performance. Why do people go crazy because of this someone can explain? Like where does that hurt you?
 

maverickronin

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I actually look at the opposite way. It is a term that people with expensive systems use to refer to those with much less expensive systems albeit not bottom of the barrel compact stereos for example. What it doesn't necessarily correlate with is the actual fidelity to the original music signal. Thus a mid-fi system is likely better than most compact stereos, but not necessarily worse than an expensive system. An example would be a high end turntable with vacuum tube amplification going to say Zu speakers which trade high efficiency for an uneven frequency response. Said system would likely be in the $10K range, but would not match in frequency response, S/N, Harmonic distortion, etc. than a well sorted $1K system with any old CD/BluRay player or other digital source and JBL 308 or Kali Audio or several other mid priced active speakers that our generous host, Amir, has measured.

Of course the guy with the $10K system might well love it and that's fine.

I can see that point of view, but on the other hand the audiophool crowd can ruin pretty much any term or distinction by applying their magical thinking to it and making incorrect comparisons.
 

ebslo

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Guys need your honest advice as I need and amp and dac for my 6xx.
Budget around 400-500usd
I don't have any personal experience with these, but just from looking over some recent measurement sets, the Loxjie D30 looks promising (ASR review here). It's a DAC/Headphonne amp combo and is currently available (in U.S. at least) on Amazon for USD $260.
 

Boris Badinov

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I have the JDS Labs Atom Amp and the Atom DAC for my desktop and 6XX headphones. Very good reviews from Amirm and he has reviewed the newer versions(Atom amp+ and Atom dac+, slightly more expensive). The review are posted here on the site to review. For headphone at my main rig, I'm using the Loxjie D30 DAC/hp amp which also received a good review here. I would recommend both brands as I'm very happy with mine. Also, JDS labs are very good people to deal with regarding customer service.
 

Pugsly

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Guys need your honest advice as I need and amp and dac for my 6xx.
Budget around 400-500usd
Glad you are enjoying the 6xx! I purchased mine last year and really enjoy them.

There are lots of very well-measuring pieces of equipment out there at this price point depending on your priorities. Do you want a dac/amp combo, or a stack? Do you want particular connections, balanced inputs/headphone outputs? A remote and the ability to change output source so you can later run powered speakers from it?

If you want a very basic set of connections/functions, you could get a JDS atom+ dac/Amp stack for $210, and then use the extra money to buy a pair of Hifiman he400se (these are the other headphones I bought last year, and they are very different from the 6xx and which one I prefer depends on my mood/music choice that day.)


If you want something that looks nicer/is more robust re build (metal case and nice big knob) from JDS, you can get the Element II for $400. If you do, they will custom engrave it for you for free, which can look very cool and which I only realized too late! See

On a very different end, there is the Topping DX3 Pro+ which is a combo dac/amp with a remote, bluetooth, but only a 3.5mm jack (won't affect sound, and the 6xx has both it and a 6.35mm adapter - the latter is more robust and more standard for larger headphones, while 3.5 is more often used with iem's) - total =$199

Amir has said that all of the above have no trouble with the HD650 (which is the same as 6xx) and his reviews tend to mention these headphones as he usually uses them to test headphone amplifiers. You can see reviews of these and other recommended equipment on this site using the review index. Click 'Review index->electronics and set your search/price parameters, etc.
 

Joe Smith

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Reading along the thread, I'm a little confused re the end scope of the system that the OP is wanting to build - a separate desktop-type setup for headphone listening (with mostly or all streaming/DAC input) AND a standalone system for listening to multiple sources, or a system NOT desktop based that allows for multiple sources with speaker playback AND has decent headphone listening capability. The options for each will lead to slightly different types of equipment. For me, my headphone amp in office is side by side with the DAC, and I can either listen via headphones or feed the DAC to the amp for speaker playback, via a switcher.
 

ZolaIII

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See how much Topping EX5 would cost you (it's 350$ from Shenzen audio without delivery). It's a nice DAC/AMP and preamp, has all what you might want in regards to buy once. Some of the limitations are narrow remote IR beam and Bluetooth reciver only.

Edit: and please stop with Hi-Fi nonsense. What's Hi-Fi with speakers? I mean how many speakers do you know that can keep up THD up to 2 max 3% while on 96 dB LSP or more (especially at 3 m distance) and even those improve with subs and besides you still won't listen it so loud (at last not for long). Right team is sci-fi.
 
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