Noob need help for new setup


Since i upgraded my pc my audio became bad like muffed and horrible so i made my own research and someone here telled me to buy the smsl m3 dac but the audio is too weak or too loud(i dont know if this ground loop thing do something). I need your guidance to find a dac/amp and a headphone

I watch a lot of anime(all the time) and i listening all kind of music like ost, EDM, jpop. on my old pc with the realtek shitty audio the sound was more clear and loud that i needed to equaliezer it to reduce the bass on my gaming headset so the sound was good with clear voices and the ost was loud and immersive
now i have a better realtek chip but the audio is muffed, i can make it louder but it’s just make it louder and the quality is still bad and my ear start to vomit at any anime opening.

The smsl m3 was good with music use but when i watched anime with it the voices was weak and the sound distorted, maybe i don’t have headset who are good to use with it. I also find that the sound was louder with the usb input than the optical input

i currently use a 10euro external sound card and the sound card that come with the mh752, with the external audio card the audio have noise for exemple when i listen a music the audio make noise when the sound cut it did the same with the smsl m3

the headset i have :
asus orion (it’s a gaming headset but i like the basses and I have used for 6 year but now the headset is broken
and asus don’t make it anymore)
audio technica mx40( the sound is good but lack of bass and especially it hurts i can’t use it more than 1 hour )
mh752(great but no bass)

So to revive my audio, I need a dac / amp and headphones around 100 euros

sorry for the bad english and the shaddy explanation

Well i dont know much about the SMSL M3. but i would think it should be fine. Maybe its the player your using or its a windows setting. Check your player and make sure its using the M3 DAC. Maybe its using a different audio output. Do you hear anime fine through your USB cable?

Can you get Schiit in your country? Or Massdrop?

SMSL M3 is not supposed to sound bad.

My guess is, it’s this kind of DAC where you need to power it via “DC in” (usb to a wall charger) to get decent volume. If you plug just the “usb in” in your computer, it won’t have enough power, and might even hear distortion.

Make sure you have enough power: Use a 2 amp wall charger and try again.
And to be sure to get rid of interferences, don’t plug anything in the “usb in”, just use the coax or optical input.

Good luck!

Maybe the fiio k3 for a DAC amo. Has a nice bass boost as well and hm5 pads for the m40x it gives more body to the sound.

I’m surprised to see that you feel the M40X lacks bass. That was not my experience with it at all. It definitely had the most bass out of the half dozen or so closed-back headphones I tested under $100.

For the player i use vlc and in the windows setting was fine, i tried to disable audio enhancement see whats it happen but it didn’t do mutch, the 2 outputs work fine but in the usb output the audio was louder than optical

i can get shiit but all there website is out of stock and i checked what massdrop is and shipping cost is insane to europe

i powered it with wall charger one at 1.5 amp and one at 5 amp it do the same as power it with usb
maybe the optical output of my mobo is bad ?

i done some test and i think is just my ear who is more used to shity audio with gaming headset who bass range are boost so tracks i listent a lot don’t feel the same way i am used to

I assume you mean M40x?

I have them and they have considerable bass. Taking an educated guess and say your USB sound card thingy is the bottleneck here.

The fiio k3 look good but what is the “gain” switch for ? and the dac is at 168euro (183,04usd) on amazon so arround 150euro(163,43usd) fiio k3 is the best i can get?
For the pads it’s Brainwavz Hm5 ?

The USB sound card is bad and all my headphones sound bad on it but the sound is not muffed like the onboard sound card of my 200euro mobo

i use the m40x only for music now because the headphone hurt and it’s the first time i buy something who is not a gaming headset and i used the same one for years maybe is my hearing who is not accustom yet

Well you got IFI. Topping. and SMSL too choose from. The Topping D10 is a very nice DAC. if you want better theres he E30 which is getting very good reviews. And maybe one of their amps. If you want a all in one theres the ifi Zen DAC available in your area. theres also the Fiio K5 Pro

For a headset maybe a sennhieser or hifiman. Maybe the 599 which is on sale right now for 100$

The Fidelio X2HR are known to have a lot of bass:

The Helios is a new headphone thats just come out 180$. has a U or V shape and is very detailed like a high end headphone. Its very easy to drive

I believe for a 150 euros the best you can get is the k5 pro or ifo Zen dac. The gain switch let’s you access low gain and high gain modes. Low gain is generally meant omfor iems or low impedance headphones while high gain is for harder to drive headphones.

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Are you using stock pads on the M40x? If you can get some angled pads like the Brainwavz it should make them a lot more comfortable and tighten up the bass a little bit. You can also try leaving them over something around the size of your head when not listening to them, as it will reduce the clamp force over time. I used the SMSL M3 for a while and it was fine, defnitely an upgrade over on-board.

Also, disconnect all this and only use the SMSL M3 front output to avoid any problems with drivers etc. And… all this makes me think you’re using one of these adapters (mono!)

Instead of one of these (stereo).

i only have the one who come with the m40x and smsl m3 the 2 are stereo
they have 2 black band

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brainwavs brand is out of stock

any other brand are good to go ?

i think i can take the hd599 and make it ship to france,
is there a big difference between hd599 special edition and normal hd599?

none at all just the color