Well I didn’t see it anywhere so I’m gonna suggest the SMSL DA-9 speaker amp. This thing simply kicks a lot of ass for 220 bucks! Seriously, I don’t know how you beat it from a price/performance perspective.
As for Stacks, I’m not sure if this warrants consideration because it may be outdated now, but the M200/SP200 stack sure punched above its weight class for me. It took a while but I really warmed up to the AKM chip. And in fact both pieces are still in use to this day, just in separate systems!
Man, I can’t get over how good these headphones are. I have two pairs and there’s nothing that can get me to sell them. Absolutely legendary level stuff, yet it still didn’t get the attention and recognition it deserved.
I’ve seen some SR2 pairs going for below $350, and that’s just some i n s a n e value stuff.
I want to add the Koss KPH40 as well on this list, in my opinion Koss did it again with this price point. This is definitely an upgrade from the KPH30is but of course it still depends on you, since there are people out there prefer the 30i’s sounds more than the 40’s, but to me it’s a definite buy.
If he’s only using IEMs, I’d go for the Fiio BTR5 or something similar (Haven’t tried it but a ton of people here praised it), but if he needs power for headphones (or listens to music loud), yes, this is great stuff.
I have the XD05 Basic AKM version (they’re now using ESS chipsets) and I swear the headphone out of this sounds better than my 100$ JDS Atom and my 100$ Liquid Spark…
@LeDechaine Thanks. BTR5 is one I have considered for myself. Friend was thinking Desktop dac and amp for his 58x tho it drives easily and sounds “ok” with
his Dragonfly black out of tower computer. He put money in unexpected car repairs instead for now, so will be waiting a while…but yeah that Xduoo is pretty loaded.