Headphone Amp Help

Nice setup. Mine below now using RoPieee on my Pi4 with Cobalt using WiFi (very stable).

Via iPhone it sounded boxed in and only exceptable at 45+ on the volume slider on Roon.

Via RoPieee, same SPL at 20 on the slider scale.

Via my Dell Core with Exclusive mode enabled it sounds far better via the Cobalt than both the above.



[Edit: I missed the last post in this thread which was @Menzies discussing exactly the setup I’m considering. I’m unsure why the audio experience would differ between a phone and RoPieee. Perhaps someone can explain]

I’m curious if an AudioQuest DragonFly is an option and, if so, what the tradeoffs are.

Am I correct in thinking that an AQ DragonFly can be plugged into something like an RoPieee but can also easily be taken portable and plugged into an iPhone or Android with the appropriate pigtail?

It’s been a very long time since I played with wired headphones but I’m thinking of jumping in and this is one of the options I’m considering.


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AQ Cobalt: Output : 2.1Vrms @10k Ω or higher; 16 Ω minimum for headphone
Tradeoffs are, a better headphone amp will give a better performance for home use. The AQ Cobalt does a fairly good job, but as seen I got different output levels from what the Cobalt was connected to. My next steps are to demo several headphone amps.



Thank you.

Do you understand why the levels differ? I’m asking for a bit of remedial education here. I would assume an identical bitstream from the two sources but I don’t understand how volume control works for these paths. To the extent it’s relevant, the cans I’ve got on order are low impedance (55Ω).

No idea is my answer to that one. Software gain levels perhaps.

A Dragonfly Red or Cobalt would work ok with this impedance level


Interesting. I thought that was only a factor if volume leveling or some other DSP filter was applied. I don’t know, though.

I can add that the AudioQuest DragonFly Cobalt is a great mobile solution, also in terms of sound. The adapter between the DAC and the phone is a bit of a nuisance, but it still works well.

I can also add that an old DAP from Onkyo, the DP-X1 with Twin DAC, is an even better mobile solution than the DragonFly. However, unfortunately, only if you play the native Onkyo app and thus material on the device.
The Twin DAC is not integrated with the Qobuz App, the Roon Remote works, but only plays with interruptions and also bypasses the Twin DAC, so it is unfortunately not usable.

For listening at home with headphones, I would still prefer my stationary mini system with the two Pro-Ject devices, the sound is simply much better and above all more suitable for longer listening sessions.
I use different headphones with the devices: B&W P7 (wired), AudioQuest Nightowl (also wired) and very good, already older Ultimate Ears super-fi 5 pro IEM.


That went for a ridiculous amount!!

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Yes it did and not by me. :relieved:

Patience is a virtue in the eBay game.

There was the time (when I was not patient) I was bidding on 3 Sub woofer’s at the same time. I won them all, but thankfully one of the sellers allowed me to withdraw my bid (but I ended up buying the other 2)

Bide you’re time and hopefully you will win the prize


I’m a very patient man…


Don’t forget the promo code too! £86 BIN.

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Nice one. Hadn’t looked today. With discount paid £77.40

Many thanks @Formula for sharing and reminding me of the discount code.


All you need is an amp, if you want to make a stack.

I wanted a black version, and managed to find the new Modi 3e, I liked it so much I hunted around for a Magni Heresy Headphone Amp too!


I must stay away from eBay now… :joy:


A question for the folks who are using a Schiit stack.

What’s your volume control strategy if your path is something like Pi (roPieee, rooExtend, etc.) → Modi → Magni?

Do you set the Roon zone to fixed volume and then use the volume knob on the Magni?

I’m debating a setup like this but the components won’t be in arm’s reach.



Hi @gTunes I will be using fixed volume and use the HP amp volume control. Just waiting to get mine after todays purchase.

thanks again @Formula

nothing quite like a big pile of Schiit in our homes!


Good choice on the Magni. It’s a great little amp my Heresy gets a lot of use. Don’t be tempered to change the power brick as it’s AC not DC so all those fancy psus won’t work on it. Doesn’t need one anyway quiet as anything.

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I’ll have my HP’s on, can’t hear the wife either!

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You going to use it with the cobalt or a different DAC ?

I have a Topping E30 until I decide if I want more Schiit in my house. (this joke will never get tiring)

eBay offerings appear a little steep for used but I’ll keep looking.

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