DAC/AMP for DT990s & Microphone questions for a beginner

600 ohm 990 vs 250 ohm 990 pros have a $90 AUD difference - that’s why I was leaning towards the 250 ohm.

With that in mind is the 600 ohm substantially better? I’m planning on upgrading anyways sometime in the future, probably to a higher end setup given that i’m investing in the amp + dac.

ah right, my bad. go ahead and go with 250 ohm. Still waking up need my coffee lmao

if your planning upgrades I would recommend put that extra money away towards the next headphone. So, yeah 250 ohm is fine then.

Done! Ordered Spark + 990s 250 ohm + E30

Hopefully everythin ggoes well

Lol don’t forget your cables and potentially a wall wart less you don’t want to use one. wall wart meaning something like this

or one of those usb charger wall plugs as long as it has enough power your fine. It can make the unit sound a little better by using one.

a powered usb hub can work too

I bought the RCA cable together with the Spark through monoprice’s website.

Could I run both the spark & e30 without a wall wart? Does it not come with one them HAHA

So the spark comes with its own wall wart which plugs into the wall? And then I’ll just plug the DT990s into this + the E30s via RCA?

The E30s then plug into usb ports on the PC? What is the second usb for?


Would something as small as an iphone X usb wall wart thing work?

liquid spark comes already with it’s power supply unit it’s respectively just like the picture in that amazon link so it has to have its own plug. E30 on the other hand comes with a power supply cable but its a usb instead so you can use it to a computer or to a wall wart… or switch it out to the same style plug as the spark. Not quite sure if you can switch the spark over to a usb and use a powered usb hub though… thats an interesting idea.

okay so. Spark. It comes with a simple power cable that you plug into the back of the unit and then plug it into the wall. E30 comes with two cables 1 for connection to the computer the other for its power, as it’s a usb power cable it can either go to the computer or the wall. RCA cables will connect the two units.

Not sure, maybe? I don’t use an iphone… its a standard usb cable not mini usb or usb-c or anything so if it has a standard usb port like you find on your pc it should work… just remember that its a pretty short cable

What purpose does the wall wart serve anyways? Is it to provide more power to the E30? how much power does it need anyways?

Alright sounds easy enough! No need to download any software/drivers? Just plug and go would work?

Cheers again for al the help

check the link for power… thats the correct power requirement on there pretty basic. Also, it can help the dac being powered a bit further and help your sound a bit further… much like the ifi zen dac over there upon using its power supply becomes stronger and better in sound quality.

Once you plug it all in it should work out the gate… if there is any drivers or any updates of course itll be in the instructions but I didn’t really need to do any of that.

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A potential option to fit a combo dac/amp into your budget for gaming is the mayflower arc. A used mayflower arc mk1 can be picked up via eBay for around $120-150 (gonna take some patience). Might not be suitable for the 600 ohm variant of your headphones tho

If one had to choose between a spark or mayflower for the dt 990 I would point them to the spark hands down due to sound quality and a better pairing signature plus raw power and pricepoint.

Yup. If he doesn’t need to have a dac+amp combined in a single unit with a mic output, i like the jds atom + topping d10 as a capable yet budget friendly option

While, I definitely agree that this combo is very good in the terms of the 990 I wouldn’t recommend an atom. Not that the atom is bad by any means it’s quite fantastic the problem is that it’s neutral with an ever so slightly sharp edge to it which can make headphones ever so slightly brighter in 990s case this is just a bad idea and I would think should be pretty obvious in reasoning lol considering just how sharp the 990s already are especially at 250 ohms not 600 ohms where the treble is smoother and more refined. I like the Atom for warmer headphones or neutral sometimes dark is okay too as the atom is pleasantly clean but anything this sharp just doesn’t bode well for something that can make it even worse and not resolve that sibilance which is why I completely say go with a spark -if you can- otherwise use an amp that doesn’t make it brighter keep it as neutral as possible if you can’t get an amp with rolled treble and pair it to something like an E30 as it can help a bit more.

Mayflower arc is a bit of an interesting one… One of the very few amps I can describe simply as a bit of a V shaped sounding amp. It’s a good sounding unit but labelling it “great for competitive” when it also brings in the bass? no. for gaming? good for competitive… no. I hate the gaming labelling crap cause it’s never generally accurate like at all. Ifi zen dac is nice but it’s balanced so it loses power and sound quality without use of its balanced port… schiit hel is a bit more colored a bit more analytical and smoothed out more neutral in a sense, meanwhile arc over here is a bit of a V as it brings out the bass and treble it also opens up the sound quite a bit which is quite lovely for just regular gaming all the while being one of the few compatible amp/dacs for the consoles. Would I recommend this for the 990? No for other headphones? Oh definitely. arc definitely just wrecks the soundblaster g6 in my opinion in sound quality. Mic quality is a bit meh in my opinion on them though it sounded a bit… darker for me on my mic input when I had it… while nice and all just wasn’t very accurate lol

My only issue with the mayflower though is that it’s what $250 - $300? at the price point its in unfortunately you can get a better dedicated setup as long as you can do away with the mic port

Hey! Back again just because i’ve received the E30 now, and the Spark & DT990s will be coming in a few days!

Are there any settings once everything is plugged in that I should be aware of & do?

E.g. Optimal windows settings, & what do I do with the Peace APO software & EQ’ing?

How do I also make sure that my soudn is goign through the DAC & AMP, then into the headphones from windows settings instead of like onboard audio?

Should be good to go once you plug it in… if you want to increase the sound quality however. Go to bottom left hand corner of your screen aka start menu, search bar type control panel, click hardware and sound, go to sound, under the tab “playback” you should see E30 in there right click it go to properties, from here you can activate or disable enhancements from its respective tab or change quality over in the advanced tab

pretty sure the standard sound settings were 24 bit 44,100 hz your hi res audio files go higher than that though so tinker at leisure. as for peace apo. You need both peace downloaded and its apo program. Once you have both launch peace it should bring up the configurator if it doesn’t and instead asks you which interface to bring up the simple or full just bring up simple interface and underneath the “gain values” all the way to the right of you will see one of the devices listed or in some cases it will just say “all devices” theres a C to the right of that kind of a small button click that from there you can choose which devices you want to configure to be able to edited by peace apo this includes any microphones too in the other tab capture devices. Choose what you want alterred in ths case it would be your E30 and click okay it will want to restart your computer… go ahead and restart you should now be able to launch peace apo after the restart select the E30 and configure your sound at your leisure and theres multiple presets on there from the get go such as bass boost and high boost.

Make sure you have your RCA cables connecting the two(Audio Input for the amplifier). Make sure windows is set to use the E30 as your sound source. Can do this by simple going to volume icon on the bottom right click it itll bring up the volume as well as the device… click the device name and it will bring up other choices… set it to the E30 from there you should be able to hear volume out of the headphones .

Something to keep in mind with Peace over there. If you edit the sound it’s going to sound a tad off… Use the bar at the top for some pre amp and it should fix the issue dont go overboard with the preamp though just get tinker with it till it sounds right. Other alternative is a bit more power from the amp itself may correct it. Once you get used to peace feel free to switch over to the full interface… tons of controls and stuff to mess with.

With the amp start at 0 volume on low gain and ascend so you dont blow the headphone or your ears out… if its 600 ohms generally you need high gain but 250 ohms a lot of times high gain isn’t particularly necessary though you can still use high gain it wont need to be turned up real high at all

If you have further trouble send a message over and we can help you out.

Don’t mean to hijack the thread but reading this has been more than insightful to me, I’m convinced that I do will be getting 990’s +e30 + Spark

Additionally just wanted to know if I could obtain speakers such as the edifier s2000s and utilise these in this setup and run both my xbox and my pc? My understanding is that I can, is there any option to add a sub to this setup potentially in the future? Thanks for all you knowledge hope your staying safe!

Hey mate, also from Aus here, was wondering if you could help me with links where to obtain everything?

Have you got recommended settings for competitive games? I.e. disable or activate enhancements & what to do with quality etc.

What does having a higher bit/frequency result in?

I’ll mess around with peace & APO when I received everything! Any recommended settings/EQ profiles you like for games such as tarkov/cod/siege with the 990s + spark? I understand that lots of it personal preference, so its all good if you’re unable to answer, but just as a guide what ‘sounds’ should I be tweaking for max competitiveness in terms of hearing footsteps, sound cues etc.

Sounds good, i’ll give it a try when I get the amp. Also, what mode should the E30 be in? just dac right?

Will do. Is gain something that I mess with on the actual AMP itself, or something in sound settings?

Thanks so much mate! it’s all very much aprpeciated.

Yea no worries!

I got the spark from the monoprice site, but its quite costly with international shipping though. Also got the RCA cables from here, which were exactly the same ones as what Falenkor linked earlier in the thread.

DT990’s I got from minidisc.com.au (they have it for cheapest at 239 vs. 259 elsewhere). E30’s from addictedtoaudio, but they overprice it a lot. It just sucks that they are the only importers…

Competitive? leave those enhancements alone. You can up the quality it really doesn’t do anything to my ear for games they generally just play at the 24 bit like I said previously.

Usually Hi-Res audio will use a higher bit rate to enable better sound quality sounds better and in higher bits you can also tell the difference between your equipment a bit easier to my experience especially on a FLAC file. Some games have a better audio engine than others though so keep that in mind.

Competitive? Turn the bass down to the point it doesnt kill the sound essentially go out of your way to kill that rumble without turning the headphone full blown sibilant doesn’t take much. Everything else? Leave it alone or you can dial in the treble a bit if its a bit too fatiguing for you again just remember to tinker with the preamp a bit when your adjusting so it sounds right.

Absolute neutrality in the bass no rumble you can keep some punch to it but any rumble will cause issues(you can use songs you know have a sub bass to test this if you want), Mids can stay neutral ideally some upper mids will be good though, keep the treble bright however if its too much dial it back a small amount as 990s one razer sharp sounding headphone. Essentially all you technically need to do is kill the bass everything else on the 990 is fine.

Yeah, set it into dac mode not preamp+dac should be in the instructions on how to do that its very simple.

if you mean the low and high gain its a button on the spark in front next to the volume knob. You’ll see it.

I have to seriously warn anybody who picks this up or wants to pick up a dt 990. This headphone is not meant for everyone it has extremely sharp highs aka treble and it’s hard to manage if you have any form of sensitivity to the treble. You generally don’t know if your sensitive to a bright headphone until you have tried it or you can run a bit of a test by sitting with a radio or some other audio equipment and max the treble then listen to a song with a lot of S sound. I use something like Alan Walker - Faded in a Hi-Res file as it has a lot of treble frequencies and a lot of S sounds with female vocals.

hmm, so speaker setups are a bit out of my zone and experience. Maybe @M0N can help you on that? He’s extremely knowledgable much more than I am. I tagged him so he can see this so maybe he can provide you some insight on that.

Of course, this sites meant to help others. If you have other trouble feel free to send a message out again.

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No problem mate warning heard, I’m trying to experiment with some higher pitches to get an idea if I would like the 990’s, any suggestions headphone wise if not?

Not a problem much appreciated!