My ultra picky friend wants to get in hifi

So I got this friend who finally decided to get to the hifi life (yaaay) but turns out he is ULTRA picky (he said he dosent like the look of neumann ndh20 wtf). He is a total bass head and listens to electronic music (edm, trap, etc). His budget is also 600$. And he also dosent wanna use an amp.

That may limit his options.
Maybe a DAC/Amp combo unit?

I can understand that to a degree.

This sounds to me like your friend doesn’t actually want to get into the ‘hifi life’. So I don’t know how much help we can be.

As far as equipment goes, best bet is probably an E-Mu Teak or a finding a used Fostex X00 for under that price. You can get decent bass out of those without and amp…but not great.


Secondhand CF Cascades?

Upon further thought, seems like for this person a set of Sony ANCs, either the XM3 or XM4 would be a good starting point. No amp needed. Bassy. Great for EDM.

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Told him all these options and they’re too “basic” for him lol. I’ll try to convince him to get an amp lol.

Tell him if he doesn’t want something “too basic” then he needs an amp & dac :sweat_smile:

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What about a Meze 99 variant. Should be okay using on-board
(if he really has too) and provide the adequate bass amount for his preference.

There are a lot of DAC/Amp combos now with 500mw+.

Just the good old xDuoo XD-05 is 500mw. Or the “basic”. (too basic for him? :grin: ) the “plus” is 1 watt.
Good old Fiio K5 Pro is also 1 watt or even more.
Schiit Hel is a 1 watt dac/amp combo, too. With mic input.
JDS OD2 + Odac (But 250$+)

If he wants to enjoy music with his computer, and wants to spend 600$ on headphones… He wants a dac/amp. Otherwise he may prefer quality IEMs for his smartphone but he’ll explode his ears with IEMs plugged straight into the computer because… he won’t have an external amp.

my brother is the same but with treadmills atm. shopping for a treadmill but he’s crazy picky. I told him to be realistic and beggars can’t be choosers. If your buddy wants something with no compromises but dosen’t want to use amp tell him he’s gotta get a dap or some shit.i know u wanna convince him to get into hifi, i wish i could convince everyone too but if he’s not going to even try properly because he’s to picky he should just call it quits. maybe get a blon 03 or someshit

Have him join a forum and start the journey himself. If you suggest something and he doesn’t like it, it will be your fault and the relationship will fall appart and he might even shank you in the liver for having him spend so much money on a headphone, when he could have just bought Beats. :wink:


Dr 177x go might be the pick. Also the meze series all unique looking bass heavy and easy to drive

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Thanks for the help guys. He decided to pay the extra price and go for the cascades lol