Question Advice on listening station


Feb 21, 2022
Hi All,

I'll start by stating that I am a rank neophyte on topics hifi. I'm looking for advice on a possible setup on a reasonable budget.

I have a music room for this setup. I'm looking for what components I need to go from source to headphones keeping the sound as clean as possible for critical listening. My source is a huge library of music (lossless flacs) on an NAS server in my home. The headphones will be a collection of headphones of all sorts from reference closebacks (like Sony MDR-7506s) to openbacks (HD-600s), to iems, to super bassy (HD-800), to sparkly upper ends (Grado Hemps). I think 300ohms is the highest drive need. What I'm not sure of, is what I need in terms of DAC and AMP, and I have no idea what device I would need as a go between from the NAS to the DAC/AMP stack. Ideally I'd like a setup that could run two sets of phone simultaneously (for an A/B comparison or dual listening). The NAS is in a server room separate from the music room, and the connection to it is likely to be wifi. My total budget is around $500, but I'd go higher if there's a good quality reason to. All music types, but heavily biased towards classical.

I have:
A.) A Synology NAS filled with music
B.) A number of different headphones of varying power and responses
I need advice on:
C.) What DAC to get
D.) What Amp to get (or an all in one with C)
E.) What piece of tech to go between A and C (preferably with a decent UI to select music from A)




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