FX Audio DAC-X6 underpowered?

I just got this thanks to a lot of good reviews online. I’ve not been using a headphone amp, but rather a powered computer speaker with headphone jack. So it just seems cooler to have a small dedicated headphone amp on my desk than my current setup. And I want something that will work with a future purchase of the Hifiman HE400 SE headphones.

The trouble is the FX Audio DAC is way quieter than my previous setup. I would think a headphone amp would be louder than the jury-rigged system. The volume knob works smoothly, but the last quarter turn does nothing to the sound. It doesn’t get any louder. With my old system, the iems or phones got louder all the way to level 10.

Is the FX Audio DAC broken? Or can I expect really good sound from my OG Tin P1 planars with an output measured in milliwatts?

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I had the original DAC-X6 and it wasn’t a power house, but it was a noticable step above a PC output for sure. It wasn’t much louder, but for some headphones I felt the difference in the bass control mainly. Don’t know the output for you speakers but I think it is fair to say it should be more powerful than it.

If you can make a return, even if it’s not a defect, do it. If you want more power there are options like the Magni or the Asgard, or maybe some toppings like the L30 with gobs of power.

Edit: also, welcome to the HFGF!

Thank you for the reply. I’m gonna return it. I’ve ordered a Schiit Heretic instead. Schitt gets great reviews, but why they would name two different models Heresy and Heretic I’ve no idea. Go with Heresy II or something.
I should have realized the low power of the DX6 by the fact there are discussions online on how to raise the bias by opening the case and moving two jumpers.

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Schiit has always been childish with their product names and references. I’m not a fan but a pot of people like this approach. I guess this time they were more funny than practical.

Just one important thing: raising the bias is more linked to raising the gain of the amplifier, not the power output itself. You raise the voltage output, but not always the output current can follow this. That also is valid for you idea of “loud”, as this is also has to do with voltage and it doesn’t indicate power in itself.

Example would be my Dell laptop headphone jack. It is loud as hell, I can plug my AKG K712 and it sure gets beyond listening volume. But it still drives these cans worst than my JDS Labs Element II, because the dedicated amp can supply better current during the signal swings, especially at the low frequencies.

Anyway, hopefully your purchase of the Magni will meet your needs! Haven’t listened to one but it’s a entry-level favorite of many in the hobby. Also, please remember the Magni doesn’t have a internal DAC, so you may need to buy one for using it with a PC.