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Which Earphones Will Sound Better?
Tall-Guy
post May 12 2012, 02:20
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Hello,

My Microsoft PC Headphones are dying, and it's time to upgrade my PC Gaming Kit. I was reading good reviews about the 'Steelseries Sibiria V2 USB headphones', and it's about the price range I was looking for. I'm also the owner of Ultrasone HFI-550' headphones I get from a friend few years ago - Those are being connected to my TV set (headphones jack) and I mainly use them for Playstation 3 games and watching movies.

I probably going to use the 'better' headphones with my TV and Playstation 3, as I use it more often. I'm pretty bad with all those technical details, can someone please tell me which headphones should 'technically' sound better? Here is the spec for both:

Sibira:
50mm speakers
Frequency response: 18 28,000 Hz
Impedance: 32 Ohm
SPL@ 1kHz, 1 Vrms: 112 dB

HFI-550:
Headphones Type Headphones - Binaural
Headphones Form FactorEar-cup
Headphones Technology Dynamic
Connectivity Technology Wired
Sound Output Mode Stereo
Response Bandwidth 15 - 22000 Hz
Sensitivity 100 dB
Impedance 64 Ohm
Diaphragm Mylar - 2 in

Also, the headphone jack of my TV hissing quite a lot, and I don't think I'm actually using the full power of the headphones without a real amp. I was thinking of getting a DAC like Astro Mixamp, but it's too expensive at the moment. Would Fiio E3 or E6 would be good enough to power it up to fully enjoy the Headphones and prevent the hissing? or do I need something 'stronger'?

Thanks you.
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Glenn Gundlach
post May 12 2012, 03:10
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I've found over the years that specs - particularly on transducers like speakers, headphones and microphones - are very close to meaningless. Things that look 'bad' on paper sometimes are quite good and vice versa. My take on it is you have to listen to them yourself and in the case of speakers, it's recommended to get a trial where they will be used. You'll have a tendency to get things that sound familiar and sometimes that's not a good thing. Take some familiar material but also ask them to play their favorites too.

G
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LithosZA
post May 12 2012, 08:59
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It also depends what 'better' means to you. More accurate/flat? or more bass, less treble etc.

QUOTE
Also, the headphone jack of my TV hissing quite a lot, and I don't think I'm actually using the full power of the headphones without a real amp. I was thinking of getting a DAC like Astro Mixamp, but it's too expensive at the moment. Would Fiio E3 or E6 would be good enough to power it up to fully enjoy the Headphones and prevent the hissing? or do I need something 'stronger'?

I would try to skip the TV headphone jack completely. In my opinion it is always best to keep everything digital up till the amp and let the amp/dac handle the rest.
If your tv has an optical output then I would suggest that you look for an amp that has an optical input or an external dac that has an optical input that outputs analog to an amp.
Or if you use a pc you can get an amp that has USB input.
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Tall-Guy
post May 12 2012, 10:57
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Sadly, I don't have the option financially to get a decent DAC. My cheapest option would be:
http://www.dealextreme.com/p/fiio-e10-usb-...-112917?item=28

Or I might just pay a bit more and grab this:
http://www.dealextreme.com/p/fiio-e10-usb-...-112917?item=28

The question is, does an small amp to the TV Headphones out will do any good? or the difference will be too minimal to be worth it?

About the headphones, I'm afraid the Audio test will not be accurate enough, because as I mentioned I think the Ultrasone missing a good amping power. I'll try to do it anyway, but if you guys didn't notice any 'overkill' difference between the headphones spec-wise, I'm good either way.
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nagual
post May 12 2012, 15:24
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I think, this:

http://www.amazon.com/FiiO-D3-Digital-Conv...1918&sr=8-4

would fit your tv digital out (Ive got one myself, connected to my pc wub.gif ).
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Tall-Guy
post May 12 2012, 22:42
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QUOTE (nagual @ May 12 2012, 17:24) *
I think, this:

http://www.amazon.com/FiiO-D3-Digital-Conv...1918&sr=8-4

would fit your tv digital out (Ive got one myself, connected to my pc wub.gif ).


But those does not include an amp right? I will still need an amp for any of those headphones to fully enjoy them?
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Arnold B. Kruege...
post May 17 2012, 10:48
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QUOTE (Tall-Guy @ May 11 2012, 21:20) *
Also, the headphone jack of my TV hissing quite a lot,


If the TV's headphone jack has a lot of hiss, the problem may be internal and effect all outputs.

QUOTE
and I don't think I'm actually using the full power of the headphones without a real amp. I was thinking of getting a DAC like Astro Mixamp, but it's too expensive at the moment. Would Fiio E3 or E6 would be good enough to power it up to fully enjoy the Headphones


Possibly.

QUOTE
and prevent the hissing?


Probably not.


QUOTE
or do I need something 'stronger'?


A better TV?

Maybe just a better antenna.

This post has been edited by Arnold B. Krueger: May 17 2012, 10:48
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pdq
post May 17 2012, 13:03
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QUOTE (Arnold B. Krueger @ May 17 2012, 05:48) *
QUOTE
or do I need something 'stronger'?


A better TV?

Maybe just a better antenna.

In these days of digital TV, hiss is not a symptom of a weak signal.
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Tall-Guy
post May 24 2012, 12:39
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Only seeing this now.
The 'Hissing' problem from the Headphone port is a known issue with this TV (It's a 2011 brand). People didn't notice any hissing with a Digital out It seems.
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