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PostPosted: Wed May 24, 2017 5:24 pm 
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Joined: Wed Mar 16, 2011 5:43 pm
Posts: 28
Location: Wheatley, ON, CA
Dumb question:
My old Denon DCD 800 had a headphone jack. Am I safe to assume there is some sort of headphone amp built in? If so, does anyone have any input as to the sq coming out of the aforementioned amp?
I didn't ever try it as a stand alone but was wondering if that would be a better option than some other digital source.
Thanks for reading/replying.


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PostPosted: Wed May 24, 2017 5:53 pm 
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Joined: Sat Jul 04, 2009 6:08 pm
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Location: Montreal, QC, CA
The DCD800 uses an NJM4556D bipolar op-amp to drive headphones directly with a max power dissipation of 700mW (based on the low impedance headphones in common use back in the day). In sharp contrast, a typical modern external headphone amp capable of driving both low and high impedance headphones can put out somewhere in the 5,000 to 8,000 mW into low impedance phones. So, in essence, with typical older low impedance headphones (8 to 32 ohm range) the Denon can be perfectly suitable, but for the popular modern high impedance headphones, a dedicated external headphone amp is preferable. Also, unless you go really cheap, modern headphone amps cost about as much as the Denon did in its day for the whole CD Player.

Back in the day, external headphone amps were extremely rare as pretty much every receiver or integrated amp had a built-in headphone jack. The vast, vast majority of headphones sold for home use were low impedance designs, so high output was not really a priority. Headphone jacks on CD Players and tape decks were intended for monitoring purposes and nor really for long term, critical listening, so they were not really a priority.


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PostPosted: Wed May 24, 2017 6:50 pm 
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Joined: Wed Mar 16, 2011 5:43 pm
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Location: Wheatley, ON, CA
Much thanks for the comprehensive information!


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