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Improving sound quality on the cheap

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refinition
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Default Improving sound quality on the cheap

Does anyone know any cheap ways to improve sound quality from mobile devices, short from buying a whole new headset? Budget is about 200 dollars.

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jRi0T68
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My entire rig (minus sd card) can be had for $200, and is superb "bang for the buck".

Sansa Clip Zip (Rockbox installed) $35
Fiio E11 amp $60
Shure SE215 headphones

What headphones do you use now? Are you against using something other than your phone as the player?

What is your source? File types?

Also, read the op in my guide. It should answer lots of questions, and make you ask more.

Excreted from my Nexus 5
[Guide] Headphone/Earphone Buying
 
refinition
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Originally Posted by jRi0T68 View Post
My entire rig (minus sd card) can be had for $200, and is superb "bang for the buck".

Sansa Clip Zip (Rockbox installed) $35
Fiio E11 amp $60
Shure SE215 headphones

What headphones do you use now? Are you against using something other than your phone as the player?

What is your source? File types?

Also, read the op in my guide. It should answer lots of questions, and make you ask more.

Excreted from my Nexus 5
[Guide] Headphone/Earphone Buying
Right now I'm using my Yamaha HPH-300, my shures are being replaced right now. I'm only using my Note 3 right now but I'm open to using an alternative player.

Don't have an amp as of yet sadly. I'm using standard mp3s from iTunes, don't have an abundance of spare storage sadly.

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jRi0T68
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Oh, lol! I was at work and didn't even notice who the OP was. We've been through most of my recommendations, then.

You need to examine your entire audio system from start to finish and figure out what the biggest thing holding it back is.

At work, this week a colleague was interested in the bizarre rig I carry with me. I explained it, and he (who is a pretty decent guitarist, having heard him today myself) questioned whether his 128kbps files playing from his iPhone through his Skull Candy earphones would sound as good as 320kbps/flac from my rig. I let him plug his earphones into my rig on the same song he was just playing from his iPhone. He then had me compare. I could hear nothing but grainy hiss from either, because his headphones are crap. No DAP/DAC/Amp/highest of the high end audio rig playing flac will sound much better, thanks to the earphones be uses which I believe are shot from being played way too loud.

I then put my Shures back in my rig, and then the difference was much clearer (though it really takes extended listening to notice the full benefit).

Your shures aren't the bottleneck in your setup. Your device almost certainly is not the biggest either. Installing a free audio hack and paying $5 for Neutron will help, but it's your files that are almost certainly limiting the sound quality. Investing in a bigger sd card, downloading 320kbps mp3's of songs you already know very well and own, IMO needs to be the first step. Then, you can either add in something like the Fiio E18, or get a dedicated DAP (or follow my example and go very cheap with a Sansa Clip Zip and Fiio E11).

Excreted from my Nexus 5
[Guide] Headphone/Earphone Buying
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refinition
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Originally Posted by jRi0T68 View Post
Oh, lol! I was at work and didn't even notice who the OP was. We've been through most of my recommendations, then.

You need to examine your entire audio system from start to finish and figure out what the biggest thing holding it back is.

At work, this week a colleague was interested in the bizarre rig I carry with me. I explained it, and he (who is a pretty decent guitarist, having heard him today myself) questioned whether his 128kbps files playing from his iPhone through his Skull Candy earphones would sound as good as 320kbps/flac from my rig. I let him plug his earphones into my rig on the same song he was just playing from his iPhone. He then had me compare. I could hear nothing but grainy hiss from either, because his headphones are crap. No DAP/DAC/Amp/highest of the high end audio rig playing flac will sound much better, thanks to the earphones be uses which I believe are shot from being played way too loud.

I then put my Shures back in my rig, and then the difference was much clearer (though it really takes extended listening to notice the full benefit).

Your shures aren't the bottleneck in your setup. Your device almost certainly is not the biggest either. Installing a free audio hack and paying $5 for Neutron will help, but it's your files that are almost certainly limiting the sound quality. Investing in a bigger sd card, downloading 320kbps mp3's of songs you already know very well and own, IMO needs to be the first step. Then, you can either add in something like the Fiio E18, or get a dedicated DAP (or follow my example and go very cheap with a Sansa Clip Zip and Fiio E11).

Excreted from my Nexus 5
[Guide] Headphone/Earphone Buying
I'll look into doing that now the stingy asian in me cringes at getting a bigger sd card though :/
All hail the broken image.

 
jRi0T68
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Try it out with just a few songs, in 3 different formats: 128, 320 and flac. Then, you'll see how much of a difference you hear on your current setup.

Excreted from my Nexus 5
[Guide] Headphone/Earphone Buying
 
morpheusxeno
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Originally Posted by refinition View Post
Does anyone know any cheap ways to improve sound quality from mobile devices, short from buying a whole new headset? Budget is about 200 dollars.

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I use the Plantronics Legend I love it its only 100$ and probs the best headset I have ever heard. You can get them at radioshack and I think at walmart. If you go online to Newegg they had a sale a few days ago on some really nice headsets. The legend you can get there for like 80$
 
jRi0T68
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Originally Posted by morpheusxeno View Post
I use the Plantronics Legend I love it its only 100$ and probs the best headset I have ever heard. You can get them at radioshack and I think at walmart. If you go online to Newegg they had a sale a few days ago on some really nice headsets. The legend you can get there for like 80$
That would be a downgrade from his Shure IEMs. Bluetooth isn't the best for SQ, not by a long shot. They're for convenience only, and those lucky enough to not notice the deficit in sound quality will be quite happy.

Noticing and feeling driven towards better sound is a curse upon one's wallet, but a beautiful adventure for the ears.

Excreted from my Nexus 5
[Guide] Headphone/Earphone Buying

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