Newcomer looking for advice regard a setup

Hello Guys, as the title suggest, i am new to this hobby and I would like to get some advice regarding a Gaming Setup.

The budget is around 800-850$ for whole setup.

I am intending to use the headphones through an old computer (realtek ALC1150 Chip in the mobo), so I fiugured I would need to replace that since it wont give me optimal results.

the use will be split bewteen gaming(casually, GTA,Minecraft,COD), music(Spotify) and some youtube videos.I Mostly listen to Pop,Rock and Metal.
It is important to include a decent mic for communicating through Discord.

I have done some digging about the DAC\AMP options and Audio Interfaces, but I couldnt figure how will it work with a mic.

I am not sure if i should get a dac\amp combo with mic input (Mayflower Arc mk2 for example) or split it into DAC+AMP Stack, or getting an audio interface like the Motu M2 would suffice.

I have looked into the mmx300 gen 2(currently 279 us$) and the DT177x(currently 400 us$).

Looking for your advice on how to run such a setup with a mic included.

Thank you guys for your time.

Hey there, Welcome to hifiguides.

I would say an entry level probably won’t need this much cash flow less you are planning to buy like a speaker setup as well or something. Generally, for an entry you would be looking at around $550 or so

Sounds like you would appreciate something with some bass then, I see you play cod would you consider yourself a competitive gamer or just strictly casual?

Depends on the mic. Audio interfaces are for XLR microphones but you can get away with just using USB microphones to skip the interface all together. You can also just get a modmic which attaches to any headphone and turns it into a headset. As for connection dac/amp to the interface, you would want an amp ran to the interface as the interface itself is a dac. Some interfaces may offer a 3.5mm jack as well same with the combo unit amp/dacs but this really isn’t necessary.

It’s always good to have the dedicated amp. Mayflower isn’t all that great in honesty considering it’s price tag it’s a bit much if you ask me. Good unit but too expensive for what it is. Combo units will lack power and generally won’t be as good as dedicated units. Your essentially paying extra for that 3.5mm aux connection there. Recommend you just get an amp + an interface if you go the dedicated mic setup or get a regular dac + amp setup for modmics.

Hmm, those are both closed backs, do you needa closed back for your use case? Closed backs are generally needed for isolation for louder environments and they provide more bass typically but also generate more heat to the ears. Also, both of those units are extremely low ohm and generally won’t even need an amp… I would think the audio interfaces could even drive those two all considering, since 177x go was designed even to be ran off a phone and mmx300 over there is designed to be ran even on console.

Hi, glad i found this, thanks for your effort. Im not sure on how to use the Quote system so i will just reply to your answeres.

I would consider myself more a casual gamer than competitive, it would be nice to hear footsteps and more details, but I am defenitly not going competitive.

I have been thinking about getting the Topping E30\L30 and use it with the MMX300(2nd gen).
I am just not sure how will that work with their mic, since there is no mic input on it.
Do i just run the Headphone through the DAC\AMP and their included mic through the Mobo? I think it might cause problem, i am not sure.
Or maybe the better option is to go with the 177x and a usb mic?

I do prefer the closed back isolation, even though i am not in a loud environment.

I am open to hear about USB Mics and how would they work in a setup, since I dont have any special equipment to “isolate” my room, or is it uncessary?

Oh, to do that you just highlight something someone says and it will bring up the “quote” option for you.

gotcha so not mandatory but would be nice to have.

L30 has quite a lot of power behind it and it’s a nice setup but really not all that necessary when you can save money, cut the power by a small margin, still powering past 600 ohms, and be just fine. I suppose it depends, I wouldn’t say the extra money from the L30 vs the $100 is netting you a huge benefit but it depends on how you look at it I suppose. Schiit stack, JDS stack, and Monoprice stack all work well and will save you money that you can put elsewhere yet net the same end result. Generally amps and dacs will go based on certain sound characteristics but also price brackets.

Nah, no problems on that, I used to do it but the mmx300 is a plug and play device with a mic built on so I believe that needs a splitter that does plug into the motherboard.

That… will require some explaining. Alright, so here’s the thing, the mmx300 is just the Beyerdynamic DT 770 but in a gamer form and a much higher price tag. It has a slightly different signature mainly in the highs not being as sharp, less clamp force, an attached mic, and a different aesthetic… aaaand that’s about it really. The 770 actually can sound better than the mmx300 due to the 770 being it’s base form and being able to be at 250 ohms meanwhile mmx300 is at 32 ohms… which removes the scalling of amps and dacs from the 770. The mmx300 can be special ordered at 600 ohms but this is a europe only feature so getting this particular version would be challenging to say the least. At the same time, 770 at 250 ohms can literally be bought at only $100 in mint condition in most cases, I actually just did this about a week ago bought one at $100 as a early gift. Meanwhile the MMX300 is usually… what like $240-$300? The addition of the mic won’t add up that high either, a modmic will cost from $40 - $120, and a usb microphone will cost from $60 - $160.

As for the 177x GO, so this is the next step up. The 177x GO was designed from the DT 1770 which had, to put it lightly, some problems with it. 177x go is of a different sound and is a bit more harman tuning(subtle V signature or… bass and treble are slightly increased but the mids aka vocals are around neutral still). It’s a higher quality headphone that comes with two sets of pads out of the box and reeling back to be able to be used portable due to it’s low ohms. It does not scale as well as the other two but at the same time, I would definitely say it sounds a hell of a lot better than 1770. The big difference here will boil to preference… you can get away just fine with DT 770 and save some money or go the higher route and get the 177x GO both are fantastic. They also, since they are a beyer, offer a larger soundstage with incredible imaging with a signature that is good for competitives so bonus points on that.

Alright then, I do recommend at some point trying an open if you haven’t they are quite nice.

Alright, so let’s explain this a bit. Starting with modmics then USB then XLR followed by Condensor vs Dynamic

So, modmics put simply are just a boom mic with a magnet and adhesive that attaches to the side of your headphone allowing you to convert any headphone into a headset. The microphones from modmic are very easy to install, sound relatively good(better than pretty much any gaming headset on the market) excluding UNI which has some issues with sensitivity, and aren’t that expensive considering you don’t need a boom arm or anything of that sort for them. Uni is around $40, I believe USB the one I use is still around… $70 or $80 and Wireless is $120. USB to my ear has the clearest sound followed by wireless surprisingly.

Next you have USB mics such as Blue Yeti which is one of the more commonly used microphones. If your into it, you can get a microphone like this as your dedicated go to microphone. Most usb mics are condensor style, explaination in a bit, which can lead to some potential issues but I barily have really ran into any despite not having a sound proof room depends on if you have any disturbances but you can still use like push to talk for them. USB mics are rather simple, plug in, the driver downloads to the pc and you use them simple enough. Generally these will need a boom arm, you can find those for cheap from $20 - $50 and a lot of times they will have the other accessories such as pop filter(avoids plosions or the puh sound voices can make through mics) cables, etc. If you feel your okay with just a regular stand then the mics will come with their typical stand to just sit on your desk for regular use. USB mics are the cheaper option to XLR setups but they are arguably not as good, then again for gaming or just discord… you really don’t need XLR at all it’s not necessary.

XLR microphones are the most expensive setups and will require an audio interface. Audio interfaces are nice because you get two things in one package of which one being a Dac the other being the ability to use XLR microphones. The dac inside of an audio interface are generally not as good as a straight dedicated dac so do keep that one in mind. XLR microphones come in a huge variety and can range from any price… this is where you will find most of the Dynamic mics but also other Condensors. XLR microphones tend to have the cleanest quality as they are going through their own dedicated unit.

Alright, So to explain dynamic and condensor. Dynamic put simply is the “live concert microphone” it is designed to block out noise around you and focus on your vocals this makes it good for pretty much any use as a gamer, however it comes with a cost of course. Condensor is the opposite, it’s designed to grab practically everything because it’s true intended design is for a musician in a completely sound proofed room. Condensors however, are not that bad and most(I want to say about 80% if not more) streamers actually use Condensors even without soundproofing. You can of course get something like a hybrid such as Samson Q2U which is xlr and USB but also actually a Dynamic this is the first mic I started with. I ended up switching out to the cheaper alternative and got rid of my interface just siding with Condensor as my house is rather quiet and I use push to talk.

Isolating your room is not necessary to use the microphones, it can help but it is not necessary for either mic style.

Got you there, but they are all around the 250$ include shippining for me - the same price as the topping E30\L30 include shipping, and Also it can be a good basis if i ever want to upgrade.

I think the mmx 300 gen 2 can has already a cable that splits into mic and headphone input, so that should not be a problem. I am afraid to connect the headphone to the amp\dac and the mic to the mobo(gigabyte z97x-gaming 5, Realtek AL1150 codec) will cause some kind of noise, distortion, or not enough volume.

Thank you so much for the elaborte explantion on the Mics, I think i would rather go with a simple Modmic setup than USB, i think that is enough for discord.

I really think the mmx300 gen 2 is the way to go since they seem to be more comfortable than the dt770(unless that can be modified?).

eh, true go with what is better for you.

I believe so, it’s been quite some time since I had them in house so sorry on that. I sit with a lot of headphones anymore lol.

In that regard, no you won’t have any issues. I did this with my SHP9500 when I had used the v-moda. I had to use a splitter of which I plugged the headphone end into my Asgard 3 and the microphone end into the motherboard… worked just fine no issues at all.

yeah, that’s fine. I would rather you comprehend the differences and make the right choice on what’s right for you. Modmics are fine for discord and the like

Can be modified yes, it’s just headclamp after all. You can stretch the DT 770 over it’s box for about… I want to say leave it for like 3 days maybe 4 and it will stay stretched from there on out relieving that pressure… both are closed backs so they both are designed to isolate the head

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Thank you very much for helping me understand a lot more about this topic.

Yep yep, go with what you feel is best of the three and grab yourself a modmic.

If you have any other questions feel free to chime in or if you get your setup and want to chime back in please feel free, would like to hear your thoughts on it. Glad I could help, have a good one and happy gaming!

Couple of days later, and I have decided to go for the 177x go.
Now i am not sure if the HyperX Quadcast would fit well, what do you think about it?
I have seen a lot of positive reviews about it, but afraid it will pick too much noise from the keyboard.

hmm, so I particularly like the quadcast but it is quite expensive for what it is to be quite honest. It’s the same price bracket as a blue yeti but a much cheaper design and frame. Granted the touch to mute is wonderful I can macro something like that to my setup. I would say whichever is cheaper between those two will be fine provided you have a relatively quiet environment as condensor microphones love to grab sound.

as far as the keyboard well it depends… if your using like blue switches yeah its definitely going to pick that up but if its like tactile reds more than likely not. Just depends on your board… you can also just alter your sensitivity settings on the pc for the mic and what not and try to properly place the mic whether on its stand or getting a boom arm

The cost is exactly the same after shipping and taxes, since I dont have any of them in local stores.
I am not using any kind of mechanical keyboard, I think it is a membrane keyboard(not sure if that is correct), Razer Cynosa. Do you think that would be a problem?

I am not worried about the room, since it is pretty silent in here.

oh the Cynosa, it has some louder traits than tactiles but not too much you may just need to touch up the sensitivity a little bit but other than that you should be just fine

Thanks for the info and advice, now the waiting game has started haha.

I also saw some news about Khadas Tone 2 Pro DAC which should come out in about few weeks, so I guess i am not in a rush.

Some more info about the inner mechanical work. The specs and features are tempting at this price.