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open back for fps gaming

Discussion in 'Sound City' started by mellow yellow, May 22, 2020.

  1. mellow yellow

    Associate

    Joined: Jun 5, 2018

    Posts: 70

    my set up currently is a pair of superlux hd 668b through a Creative Blaster Audigy Fx 5.1 sound card on my pc.
    My motherboard is the b450 mortar.
    I'm looking to upgrade for casual fps gaming.
    budget up to £200 but very dependant on value for money.

    i've looked at the sen hd599se which are just under £100
    and also see that akg k702 get very good reviews for a similar price.
    so i think it is between the two of these, but i am open to other suggestions.

    Now where i am getting stuck is on the soundcard/dac/amp...
    i have recently put the audigy fx into a newer build pc and since then it has suffered from what i think is interference, basically a very small background buzzing and it is faced directly next to my gpu fans, so i'm looking at my options here.
    how does the mobo sound compare to the audigy?
    do i need a dac/amp to run the above choices?
    what do you recommend to pair them up with (if anything at all)

    i'm happy to spend the full £200 but would i be much happIER spending less :-D

    TLDR - best open backed options for gaming with a £200 budget inc amp if needed.
     
  2. mellow yellow

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    Joined: Jun 5, 2018

    Posts: 70

    some more googling has brought up the Sound BlasterX G6 (b grade) i could pair this up with either if it would be beneficial? it gets mixed reviews but would it offer an improvement?

    sound is a bloody minefield! i sort of wish i hadnt started looking into it all lol.
     
  3. Marsman

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    Joined: Oct 18, 2009

    Posts: 11,122

    HD599 will run fine from the motherboard, but the K702 will ideally need something with a decent headphone amp. K702 requires 4x as power as the HD599 for the same SPL volume.

    K702 is one of the best choices for FPS gaming. HD599 would still be a decent choice though, and at £95, they are good value. Although no better value than the K702 really, given they are a similar price.

    Only reason I'd go for the HD599 over the K702, is if no sound card were desired and motherboard audio were to be used.

    £200 would get K702 and the B grade Creative G6 you mention. That's a very good price for a very good external sound card. Decent headphone amp that has plenty of juice for the K702 headphones.
     
  4. mellow yellow

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    Joined: Jun 5, 2018

    Posts: 70

    I can get b grade k702 for £75 so I think that's the way to go with the g6. £150 for the pair seems too good to refuse.
     
  5. mellow yellow

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    Joined: Jun 5, 2018

    Posts: 70

    b grade g6 out of stock to that ends that! .... for now.

    any other amp suggestions for gaming with the k702?
     
  6. mellow yellow

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    Joined: Jun 5, 2018

    Posts: 70

    Would a fiio e10k pair well with the k702 for gaming? I can pick one of for around £40 used so I'd be more than happy at the above for around £110 total if it will be a worthwhile improvement over what I have.

    I've read that I will still need a sound app for help with directional sound? I may have misunderstood here. I also have the sbx pro studio app from my audigy FX card. Or is that only compatible with the audigy card?

    Sorry if I'm confusing matters a bit here..

    Will the e10k still give good directional sound for fps?
     
  7. KiiYzOo

    Soldato

    Joined: Jan 2, 2011

    Posts: 6,054

    Location: Edinburgh, Scotland

    The Beyerdynamic dt 880 and dt 990 600 ohm models are meant to be some of the best headphones you can get for gaming, their sound signature lends itself very well to positional audio in games like modern warfare etc where you need a bit of bass in with the treble to tell when people are above you on wood floors for example. In terms of being able to drive them, something like the e10k might be better paired with the 250 ohm models since the 600s are a bit hard to drive from what I hear. The k702s are nice but from my initial experience from using them so far I’m gonna have to get both new ear pads and something to cover the headband because they give me a headache after a few games from the headband alone causing pain against the top of my head.

    Also in terms of additional software, I personally find that it makes it harder for me to tell positional queues so I just use the in game headphones options. But I’d say try software if you’d like, if it works for you then great :)
     
  8. mellow yellow

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    Posts: 70

    I ordered the k702 so that part is sorted now. So I'm looking at a DAC amp to go with them the e10k seems to get good reviews and fit my budget but the majority of reviews are music based.
    My main game at the moment is escape from tarkov and I believe they are getting steam audio soon so I'm thinking that should be adequate.

    I've read up on the g6 and although it is more designed for gaming I'm not sure it's worth X2 the price of the e10k
     
  9. Marsman

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    Joined: Oct 18, 2009

    Posts: 11,122

    That's a shame. :(

    I guess the trouble is with B grade going out of stock, is that you can't wait for any more to become available, because you'd have no idea how long that would be.

    If you want positional sound placement. Surround sound in other words; then the E10K wouldn't be a good choice unless you use something else to provide that.

    While the Audigy FX comes with SBX prostudio, I'm not sure whether the software can be used with any other audio device.

    I know Creative sell the SBX prostudio software on their site for £30 which that can be used with other audio devices, but my experience of sound cards in the past, is that any features that are a part of the sound card, are part and parcel with the drivers and can only be used with that sound card. Software was never something that would work with anything else, unless it was released as a separate package. I don't know if that has changed and the SBX prostudio software that comes with the FX and that can be used separately.

    Best way to test that would probably be to see if there are options to select the audio device to be used in the SBX software, such as motherboard audio. If not, then it'll be just for the FX only and you'd either need to buy the SBX software package from Creative's site, or use something else.

    Windows 10 comes with Dolby Atmos for headphones trial; at least it did. I assume it is still available. How it compares to SBX though I'm not sure. SBX is seen as one of the best algorithms for positional sound.
     
    Last edited: May 23, 2020
  10. mellow yellow

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    Joined: Jun 5, 2018

    Posts: 70

    Thanks for that, I've just tried the sbx software and you can select other devices but it only picks up devices plugged into the soundcard as far as I can see anyway.

    I've put myself on the list for the b stock g6 so I should get notified. But I can see myself being impatient and paying full whack. But then I see the X3 is a similar price if I'm looking at spending a little more. More googling required I think.
     
  11. Marsman

    Capodecina

    Joined: Oct 18, 2009

    Posts: 11,122

    Oh, didn't realise you could have a notification when B grade stock becomes available. Better than it becoming available and missing it. :)

    X3 is a good sound card, but not up to the G6 quality in terms of amp etc. I'm not sure how good the one in the X3 is.
     
  12. mellow yellow

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    The X3 has good reviews on YouTube and the super xfi looks interesting. Not sure how much of it is a gimmick though. Another one at similar price point I've noticed is the schiit fulla 2/3 but I guess that would be the same as the e10k in terms of gaming.
     
  13. Marsman

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    Joined: Oct 18, 2009

    Posts: 11,122

    Yeah, Schiit Fulla is just a DAC/amp, same as the E10K; in that you'd need additional software for positional sound.

    There is a new Fulla aimed at gamers though, which has microphone input. Essentially turns it into a sound card, except stereo only with no DSP effects that you get with a sound card. Certainly useful for those who aren't interested in positional sound and just want plain stereo sound and want to use a microphone, but don't want to use motherboard audio.

    Super X-Fi was initially released with a DAC for music use and now is advertised as for gaming use as well with the X3. The X3 does use a newer version though.

    Super X-Fi needs to be configured and you need to use certified headphones/headset to get the most from it. Without the configuration and certified headset, then SBX might be better. That's just an opinion though. :)
     
  14. mellow yellow

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    Cool, I'm on the list for the b grade g6, so I'll hold off for a bit and just run the k702 through my audigy FX for the time being and if it's terrible will look to improve on it then.

    Out of curiosity what software is available for positional sound if I opted for a e10k for instance? Is that what the dolby Atmos, windows sonic do or would I be looking at purchasing something else.
     
  15. Marsman

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    Joined: Oct 18, 2009

    Posts: 11,122

    Yes, Dolby Atmos for headphones and Windows Sonic are used for positional sound. Dolby Atmos is a bit better than Windows Sonic, at least from what I've read, but you've got to pay for it once the trial ends; Sonic is free. Still, you can try both and see if Atmos is worth buying. Creative SBX prostudio is arguably better again, but £30.
     
  16. C64

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    Location: London

    I'd grab a set of fidelio x2hr whilst on offer well worth it at £120
     
  17. mellow yellow

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    The k702 arrived today which i wasn't expecting, anyways.... I listened to to music to test them out and they are far better than my previous superluxs but I wasn't blown away by them so I have ordered a fiio e10k to give them a boost.
    I played an hour or so on tarkov with them and they are so much more detailed,but again I think they would benefit from the e10k so I'll look forward to testing them some more with that and maybe improve the directional sound with some software if needed.
     
  18. kidloco

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    Joined: Nov 3, 2003

    Posts: 4,653

    Location: Up-Holland

    Mine arrived today. Got them for £118 which seemed a bargain. Ive tried loads of late as I just can't seem to get on with wearing headphones for any length of time. Just seem to hurt and I hate my ears getting hot. Odd I know. I have a set of Bose QC35 which I use for flying but I don't like closed back for day to day use in the house.

    In the last couple of weeks I've tried;

    • Razer Kraken X USB (surprisingly good for the money, but cooked my ears)
    • SteelSeries Arctis Pro GameDAC (shocking bad, flat sound and intermittent cracking when connecting through USB)
    • Beyerdynamic DT 990 PRO (these sounded great, but seemed to clamp too much. After a couple of hours I really wanted to take the things off)
    So far so good with the X2. They sound great, really comfy and like how open they are.
     
  19. Ryanr1987

    Wise Guy

    Joined: Apr 5, 2014

    Posts: 1,962

    Location: Pompey

    I was going to chime and say K612 pro which has a better FR than the K702 but much more problematic to drive. With all the AKG's I'd recommend stuffing some ***** under there, if you've got a missus nick one of her cotton pads, rip it in half so it's still a disk and it works really well smoothing out the peaks at 2k and a few of the oddities in the treble. It really helps for music. Anyway on topic, I would personally look for something better than the E10k it's rather compressed, gritty sounding. Used mangi 3 or similar would be a better option are the AKG's are rather resolving. Massdrop also has a lot of good offerings. See how you get on however you might like the paring. Let us know how you get on.
     
  20. mellow yellow

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    Cheers mate, will do, the e10k is a good price so I'll start there. The second hand value of them seems pretty decent so I won't lose much if I need to upgrade. I'm a sucker for a bargain and new stuff so it will likely be changed in the future anyway.