Using a headphone amp to split signal
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  1. #1

    Default Using a headphone amp to split signal

    Has anyone ever used anything like this:

    http://www.behringer.com/EN/Products/HA400.aspx

    To split up an output signal?

    I was looking at sound card and trying to figure out which would be best for my usage.

    I wanted something where I could hook up a booth monitor, and have independent control of it. I noticed that a lot of sound cards have two stereo outputs, but that it's only one knob that controls them...So ultimately, you don't have the option to turn up the booth and leave the masters. Or, you could turn up the booth a little louder so that whenever you turn up the "master" all speakers turn up, but the booth remains louder as that's how you set it.

    So I started thinking that maybe I can put something in the booth signal path as a way to adjust volume independently. Y'know like those headphone extension cables that had the volume knob at the end.

    As I started looking, I found this Behringer headphone amp. And I thought this would be perfect for mobile DJ's, not only to create a separate channel for their booth, but also if you wanted to connect more than two speakers, and your mixer/amp/what-have-you only has a L+R master. This would allow you to have as much as 4 speakers.

    Any thoughts?

    Are there any obvious technical issues with using headphone outputs for main speaker outputs?

  2. #2
    Retired DJTT Moderator DvlsAdvct's Avatar
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    But it's a headphone amp. Wouldn't it make more sense to get a small mixing board that has a booth out? I mean, if you're just amping the same signal I wouldn't rely on a headphone amp, myself.

    If you want to split your signal to more speakers I'd think you'd be better off with an amp with more outs, or a larger audio interface to handle that sort of thing.
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  3. #3

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    Quote Originally Posted by DvlsAdvct View Post
    But it's a headphone amp. Wouldn't it make more sense to get a small mixing board that has a booth out? I mean, if you're just amping the same signal I wouldn't rely on a headphone amp, myself.

    If you want to split your signal to more speakers I'd think you'd be better off with an amp with more outs, or a larger audio interface to handle that sort of thing.
    I was considering that option too...I guess the "key" reason I thought this would be a good option is to save $$$. I was going to get the Audio 2 DJ, and hook it up to a line level mixer. But that set up would have cost me upwards of $230 for both. I was also considering buying a soundcard that had inputs for mic's and/or instruments, and getting something like this headphone amp to create more output channels, and that set up would cost $150.

  4. #4
    Retired DJTT Moderator DvlsAdvct's Avatar
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    Well, yeah, but what happens when you're at the gig and something goes terrible wrong because the headphone amp can't output the signals loud enough? Or they break up? I couldn't see the insides of that thing being really secure.

    I think there's a reason no one does this. Because it's a really bad idea.
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  5. #5
    DJTT Moderator bloke Karlos Santos's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by DvlsAdvct View Post
    I think there's a reason no one does this. Because it's a really bad idea.
    Hes right.

    Its a Headphone Amp. So amplify headphones with it and thats all.

    Once you start down the route of using cheap gear to get by (especially gear thats meant for a different purpose) you end up with stuff that doesnt work how you want it and you end up spending twice as much in the long run replacing crap just to get back to square one.

    Buy wisely, buy properly and save money in the long run.

    You will never regret buying quality gear. You will always regret the short cut.

  6. #6

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    So what would you guys propose for someone that needs more than 2 speakers?

    I always run powered speakers, just so that I know if one fails, I can rely on the other. The only problem is that I've noticed most mixer's (if not all) only have a pair of stereo outputs for the master output, and maybe a stereo output for the booth. But what happens if you need one for the booth and want at least 4 main speakers? I take it in this instance using "Y" adapters would have better sound quality than that headphone amp?

  7. #7
    Retired DJTT Moderator DvlsAdvct's Avatar
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    I'd say just go with the splitter cables.
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  8. #8
    Tech Guru Fatlimey's Avatar
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    One good way is to split the input before sending to each amp using a Crossover unit. That way you can bias one set of speakers to be the bass end and another to be the top end. This will allow each speaker set's amp to concentrate on a specific frequency range, playing off their strengths.

    Crossovers start from $70 or so.

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