New system audio setup help AV Reciever & Headphones

CJ Carson

Estimable
Jul 16, 2014
2
0
4,510
0
Hi everyone and thanks in advance for any help you can provide. I am currently in the middle of a full upgrade for my PC and I want to make sure I make the right choice in audio setup.

My PC is currently connected to my AV Reciever (Pioneer VSX 922) in a 5.0 setup for when I watch movies and such in the livingroom; this is via HDMI cable from my graphics card. However, I also spend alot of time at my computer desk when my mom wants to watch TV; switching the displays as I need to. When I'm connected to the TV/AV Reciever audio is through the HDMI cable and the reciever does all the work. But when I'm at my pc, my audio is provided by headphones via my old soundblaster X-Fi soundcard.

Basically, what would be the best setup in this situation? Bearing in mind I'm also looking for a new set of headphones in the £150 around $250 US price range; ideally something I can use for gaming and the wide range of music I listen to. Should I keep my setup as it is? With the audio and video via HDMI to the AV Reciever/TV, and a seperate soundcard for when I'm at my PC? Would I benefit from having something like the Asus Xonar Essence STX for use with my headphones. At some point I might consider a simple stereo speaker setup at my computer desk too, for when I don't want to use headphones? In this case would I be better buying another more basic amp for my headphones and future stereo speakers? I do appreciate good sound, but I'm by no means an audiophile; I just want to make sure I get the best for my money

Sorry if this all seems a bit of a mess, and again, thanks for any help you can provide!
 

ssddx

Glorious
Moderator
http://www.head-fi.org/products/akg-k-550/reviews/8432

the ad900x has better treble, some warmer mids as well as having a bit more clarity and instrument separation and soundstage. the two points where the k550 wins out is in aesthetic design as well as having more bass presence which the 900x is lacking a bit of.

other headphones you might want to consider and at least read some comments on...

dt990pro-250
dt880-pro
k702
 

ssddx

Glorious
Moderator
what kind of sound profile do you want?

big soundstage, airy sound but lighter on bass.
small soundstage, more direct sound, more bass
a more high/mids focused set, a more lows focused set, a v-shape (more lows and highs than mids, or a neutral flat shape)
do you mind closed headsets which may get a bit hot after long hours with them on?

thoughts on something like the audioengine d1 instead of a soundcard? do you need the virtual surround that a soundcard can provide or would an external amp suit you more?

you might want to google "tomshardware ssddx headphone headset" and read some of my other recommendtions. lots of good info there.

also you might want to check out my work-in progress headphone guide (click headphones in my sig). its not done yet (not even close!) but it has lots of good content.
 

CJ Carson

Estimable
Jul 16, 2014
2
0
4,510
0
Hi, thanks for your reply! The information you provided helped me narrow my ideas alot! As far as headphones go, from reviews and the information you provided, I think something like the AKG K550s might be ideal for me; is there anything else in this price range like the AKG K550s that I might want to consider? Bass isn't massively important, although I don't want it to be totally flat.

As far as the soundcard/amp situation goes, I think I'll invest in a good soundcard with a built in headphone amp. While I appriciate the benefits of an external DAC, I would like the option for virtual surround that a soundcard can provide; particularly for games. It also leaves me open to buy a good pair of active speakers at a later date without the need for a second amp to drive them.
 

ssddx

Glorious
Moderator
http://www.head-fi.org/products/akg-k-550/reviews/8432

the ad900x has better treble, some warmer mids as well as having a bit more clarity and instrument separation and soundstage. the two points where the k550 wins out is in aesthetic design as well as having more bass presence which the 900x is lacking a bit of.

other headphones you might want to consider and at least read some comments on...

dt990pro-250
dt880-pro
k702
 
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