Headphone amp for TV - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 9 Old 03-31-2012, 09:18 PM - Thread Starter
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The new TV i want to buy does not have a headphone output which is a pain, but the TV has other advantages for me wanting to buy it. I thought it would be a deal breaker for me but maybe not now. It has L/R RCA audio out plus coax digital out so i could either run those into a large AV amp with headphones out and get my headphone listening that way, or i connect a small compact headphone amp to the audio line out and have my headphones comming from a small box that way. I dont need audiophile quality, i just need to be able to listen to TV with phones. I also will want to use this with my Pioneer double tape deck that has no phones socket till i get brand new amp/AV reciever.

I know you can spend hundreds of dollars on fancy headphone amps. I dont really need that though. I just want one that is not too cheap and plasticy and looks reasonably well made

I would say i dont really want to spend much more than $100

Would something like this be OK

http://www.ebay.com/itm/SA-S2-SMSL-T...item3f15a1844b

There seems to be a lot of this brand on ebay. I like that it has speaker outputs too so i can connect some small speakers too which will be better than my TVs speakers

it would be nice if there was one with remote control volume control as i am not sure my TV's volume control will have any effect on the audio out connections? Its not a deal breaker i cant get that though. I could run the amp via a lead to where i am watching TV.

The only thing i am not sure is some of these amps like the one above put out a considerable amount of power. Is this only output to the speaker outputs and not the headphone socket? I would not want to pump 60 watts or what ever into my headphones and blow them and my ears. I wonder if there is a reduced level sent to the headphone socket?

i notice here is says headphone output 60w!
http://www.ebay.com/itm/SA-S2-SMSL-T...item3f15a1844b


I think that must be a mistake because here is says 60mW
https://www.springwateraudio.com/sto...products_id=38

If anyone has any other suggestions other than those SMSL amps please post. I was also looking at some Behringer amps too.

Thanks
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post #2 of 9 Old 03-31-2012, 10:09 PM
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I'm not familiar with the Tripath part you've mentioned, but my understanding is that the Tripath chips are not capable of this task, and that such a device probably has an opamp inside to handle the headphone jack (I may be wrong, I don't know).

Anyways, do a quick search on Amazon (or wherever) for Fiio products - I don't think they make a single device over $100, and they have a number of headphone amplifier type devices. Alternately, you can pick up a full stereo receiver with a remote control for around the same $100 (like the Sony DH100 and the various Sherwood receivers).

Finally, you might consider some wireless headphones, I know Sennheiser has at least one set at or around $100. Apart from the receiver route, the only headphone amplifier I'm aware of that has a remote control is the Grace m902 (which is your budget, about 17 times over - it's a lot more than a headphone amp, per se, but it's also fairly expensive).
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post #3 of 9 Old 03-31-2012, 11:32 PM - Thread Starter
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So what sort of Audio source can these Tripath amps accept then if they can not accept the normal L/R audio out from my TV or another line out source? Thats seems odd, what are they made for then? I thought you can feed it any line out RCAs to it?

Also what sort of speaker wire connectors are on the back of the SMSL amps? Are they plug in banana type?

Because i am in Australia any full AV amps need to be 220v bought locally so your Sony or other Amazon bargain suggestion is out of the question. I have long term plans to buy an propper expensive Onkyo (or maybe another brand) amp anyway but for now i just want a little box to sit next to the TV. I like those SMSL amps so it would be a shame if i could not use one?

$100 is just a rough budget, but i dont think i would need to pay anymore for one. I would have been happy enough if the TV had a headphone out jack.

Tried to email that springwood site but the contacts page does not work so i will have to try catch them on live chat when they are on next and i will ask if i can feed the line out from my TV into the n on DAC version.

Late edit - if you scroll down on this page

http://www.ebay.com/itm/SMSL-SA-S21-...item3372d68021

this spec sheet on teh amp is a bit better to read
https://www.springwateraudio.com/sto...et_TA2021b.pdf

the specs says 'applications' Televisions, cable/set top boxes etc so it looks like this should work for me i reckon.
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post #4 of 9 Old 04-01-2012, 04:20 PM
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What I meant by not suited is, my understanding is that the Tripath chip cannot run single-ended with a common ground, so it isn't actually driving the headphone output; just the speaker terminals. So inside that little box you'll have some generic opamp to drive the headphones; this isn't "bad" but it may be underpowered depending on what you want to hook up to. This is based on the Lepai amplifiers though, I could be mistaken with these. The products you've found will work, but the Fiio products (or a receiver) will work "better" (more power and wider impedance handling) for the same price. That's all I meant by it.

I also find it hard to believe that you cannot either locate a step-up transformer or inexpensive stereo receiver in 220V.

Finally, I did suggest a range of products that would be perfectly suitable, and they all run on DC so you just need a regionalized power-pack to drive them. Not all that complicated to track down, at least in my experience.
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post #5 of 9 Old 04-02-2012, 12:47 AM - Thread Starter
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Yeah its not that i cant find an AV reciever in 220 volts or a transformer, Its just that the one i am looking at is over $1000 (probabyly Onkyo 809) and cant afford that right now so i just need a cheap easy small amp to give me a 'headphone socket' on the TV as a temporary fix to get me by. I am reluctant to buy an amp from overseas anyway as there is no warrenty and shipping is expensive. If i was going to do it i would get one from amazon germany as at least they have a flat rate of 40 euro for shipping. A lot of guys are importing Denon and Onkyo amps from there and saving a fair bit but take the risk with no warrenty. Europe is 220volts too so no need for a transformer.

I only need to run some basic Technics headphones RP-F300 thats all. They run off the headphone out on my small 15inch CRT fine so thats all i need soundwise but i ordered a larger LCD TV yesterday. Was just annoyed it did not have a headphone out.
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post #6 of 9 Old 04-02-2012, 04:54 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cyclone82 View Post


Would something like this be OK

http://www.ebay.com/itm/SA-S2-SMSL-T...item3f15a1844b

It's OK, but I'm not a fan of Tripath amps, and I am a fan of good headphone amps. I'd recommend this:

http://www.ebay.com/itm/Digital-Anal...ht_3952wt_1396


Quote:


it would be nice if there was one with remote control volume control as i am not sure my TV's volume control will have any effect on the audio out connections? Its not a deal breaker i cant get that though. I could run the amp via a lead to where i am watching TV.

Your TV most likely has a setup option controlling whether its volume control affects its analog output or not. The digital output most likely runs full output regardless, but I could be wrong. So many TVs, so many small differences like this. Besides, it is your TV, so don't ask me to read the manual or go through its menus for you! ;-)

IME the *ultimate* way to solve the remote volume control problem is to simply use wireless headphones. I have a pair of Sennheiser RS170s and they are simply wonderful.
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post #7 of 9 Old 04-06-2012, 04:52 AM - Thread Starter
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Got my new TV yesterday and no, the volume control does not affect the R/L audio out. There is optical and coax audio out. Not sure if volume has affect on those either and my manual does not say. I am not needing audiophile quality here, as long as i can listen privately thats all i need. Been looking on ebay all day and theres tonnes of these sorts of things out there. Really it will come down to the features/connections/cost. I am not the sort of person whos going to get caught up with what brand the resistors and capacitors are.

for remote volume control i could get this one or a inline volume control extension lead

http://translate.googleusercontent.c...scQpDIkARbPOAg
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post #8 of 9 Old 04-06-2012, 04:33 PM
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post #9 of 9 Old 04-06-2012, 06:49 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by arnyk View Post

IME the *ultimate* way to solve the remote volume control problem is to simply use wireless headphones. I have a pair of Sennheiser RS170s and they are simply wonderful.

I have the same pair and feel the same way. If the OP decides to explore this route I recommend these over the 160s, I had both delay and noise issues with them and sent them back for the RS170. Very nice sound for a wireless headphone, with stellar coverage.

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