Beyerdynamic DT 880 600ohm + Emotiva BasX A-100

I will start off by saying my current setup is (was) Topping DX3 dac/amp to Focal Elex or DT1990 depending on my mood. I had turned more towards the 1990 however as with eq I still got the warm harmonic like sound with more detail and separation and they just felt better. I have tried headphones up to ZMF Verite (about $2k new). I had since obviously gone for around $300-500 headphones switching between 2-3 depending on my mood that day.

I purchased the 880’s after seeing DMS and Z’s reviews of them and really started like to like them. Typically, my Topping DX3 sits at around -22db with the focal and about -18 to -20db with the 1990. The 880’s dont be come really listenable until about -8db and even then its still really low. I switched between 880 and 1990 and it would honestly be a toss up between the 2.

Just today 6/21 I got my Emotiva BasX A-100 and its is a complete night and day difference. Everything is just so much better on the 880 now. Every song I throw at it is probably the best version Ive heard of that song with any headphone. I am very likely to sett at this being endgame for me at about $600 (880s=$150/amazon, BasX=$275/ebay- out of stock everywhere else, DX3=$200ish/amazon).

Bass- punches pretty deep with a nice decay
Mids- clear, detailed, natural
Treble- detailed, not sibilant. A little of a sharp S but easily eq-able but going to give more time before I do that
Separation- Great
Soundstage- not too wide, not too narrow; perfect
Imaging- Amazing
Comfort- pads are like pillows around my ears, headband could use more padding (may pick one up at some point)

This is also my first time with a class A/B amp (I have had stax amps before as well but cant really compare with dynamic headphones). The BasX is definitely doing some heavy lifting to give the 880’s every chance to shine and they absolutely do. Likely will be selling all my other ones from here and maybe keep 1 for portable use. Note- I also have a rca out from the BasX to SA-50 desktop amp to RB42x on my desk. Extremely happy with this setup.

Edit: Using oratory1990 eq profiles (“new pads” for 880)


That’s a very warm rich amp, probably a great pairing for the 880s. Glad you’re in your happy place with it! Did you jump the headphone out to full power or you left it stock?

I have a a BasX A-100 sitting around, I paid $229 for it new direct from Emotiva, shocking that they’re going for that much used!

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I jumped it for full power. I did try it without before just to have a comparison. But since im using the SA50 for speakers figured might as well jump it to the headphone out instead. It was like 250 plus shipping so wasnt too bad from retail. Even at that price im still really happy with the value.

I dont have to wonder if im powering anything well enough lol

I tried them on my 177X when I had a pair and you can FEEL the power.

and while being so clean too as far as i dont hear any weird distortion where i used to on the dx3

I never post. I am a stalker i spose. i not only signed up for the forums b/c of this but felt the need to also post Had the Emotiva a100 powering my desktop (Bc of his review of that n hd’s which i did not own) speakers (elac debut 2.0’s)

But blew up a pair of grado’s trying to mess with it B-c of course i did the mod…n these are absolutely the reason this amp is made for; i know many ppl may piss n moan n stroke their beard bout this n that but for real. If you have the emotiva A100 u should absolutely get the 600 ohms n experience for yourself. Cut the source a bit and just die a lil inside w each track. I am not an audiophile but even with a topping d10 and minus 6-7 on the source it is exatasy. All the zeos has jumped the shark bs is just that. Bs. He has not steered me wrong in 3 yrs.

If you own the emotiva u need to marry the beyerdynamic dt 880 600 ohms to it. There is no discussion it is pure audio bliss I too sometimes eyeroll the z man but i listen when he is truly shook and this is a time he is right to be so. Songs ihave listened to for 20 yrs reveal things i have not heard before. That alone should tell you u need these in your life.


Very nice and welcome. I’ll Def take that into consideration. Was going to try with the 1990 and elex but didn’t want to risk it. I still have the dx3 for iems and other headphones. Don’t want to take the risk of blwijg anything and I’m very happy with what I have

That is all that matters n i am so pretty new at this but having emotiva useless other than my computer speakers i had to try it. 400 in n im abosultely floored but it is def paired w the emotiva bc it is useless otherwise. I have the ships and a cpl pair of bluetooth ones but for this i was floored

Ihave never listened to music ‘harder’ than this set up has provided me if that makes sense idj ijs wow gotdamn

I feel the same way too. Zeos opinion should not be taken lightly. Every reviewer has their bias and preference. Joshua Valor just did a review of the Avia finally and he really put it down. Zeos has been championing the Aiva and all the varieties for years. I’m with Zeos lol. Its a great headphone. Yeah Zeos has the experience and he gets it right 90% of the time.

Wow this really makes me want to try it out. You know that emotiva amp has always been at Zeos desk for years. he never replaced it. I always think less of it cause its a under 300$ amp. but im starting to wonder if it just punches way above its price. I have the 880 600 and im very temped to buy this amp

Forgive me if im wrong but dont some headphone amps output the same power as the Emotiva 100 with jumper? why does it make such a good headphone amp for the 880’s?

Ihave zero experience i truly got it for speakers n was Hoping to get sum hd’s but never did… i only did it once n blew up my grado’s on it n reordered but even at minus 9db thru my 600ohms it is truly amazing to me n i assume everyone

D50s arrives today, already have the 880’s, Emotiva ship date is early July, jumped on it right after that review. I don’t often see him shook, first time I have ever bought a package like that. Cannot wait

think its bc with the jumpers its 50w per channel (i might be wrong) which typical headphone amps are like 1-6w per channel. plus its its on the warmer side to it brings out the low end and vocals a little more which is great for those that want the harmonic curve type sound

It’s only 50w at 8 ohms. At 600 ohms it outputs 600mW. The Schiit asgard 3 outputs half of that at 600 ohms and it pairs very well with the dt880, but I also dont have the a100 to compare.

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Seems like there’s a lot of debate after Z’s video on what the 880 600ohms need. Beyerdynamic has stated high impedance output is what they need. Over on Head-Fi KeithEmo (Emotiva Rep I’m assuming) explained the differences with the jumpers on and off the a-100 and that Lpads would lower the output impedance as another ‘hack.’

So my question is…has anyone tried the 880’s with the a-100 without the mod? It sounds like it actually might work that way.

i currently use it without the mod. i just use the speaker to 1/4in cables bc i wanted to leave the front jack open for other headphones i might want to use it with without having to unplug things. it sounds great, i dont notice a difference between using the front with the jumpers in and using it stock with the adapters. powers them very well and use oratory1990’s eq that lowers it by 11 db but still pushes them extremely well

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Thanks Cb1scu1t , it seems like it will drive the 880 600ohms just fine due to the high output impedance in it’s regular configuration.

keep in mind im not using the mod but im still using the speaker outputs on the back. that being said the front jack should power it just fine as well