My Shure SRH440 has a very low, poor sound when I'm using my MP3 player (Ipod nano). Since the sound gets much better when I connect it to my Receiver (a Sony one) or even to the computer, I think that using a headphone amp could be good.

So, what characteristics should I look for in a headphone amplifier? I'm not sure if suggesting specific brands / models is allowed in this site, but if it is, does someone have some recomendation ???

2 Answers 2


Here is a site with lots of different amps.


I don't have any of these, but I have used the site before and they are quite particular about good sound. I'm guessing this could help you. As with anything, I recommend you read reviews and buy the best amp in your price range. This may not be the most expensive.

As for why your Shures are sounding bad with the iPod, my guess is you're pushing the wee little amp too hard. It's not really designed to do more than drive the iPod earbuds, and with those you probably can't tell if the sound is bad or not :P

When you connect the iPod to the amp, I recommend you turn up the iPod no more then 70%. Use the amp for most of the gain. It should be able to handle it better.

Hope this helps.


There are a number of reports of the volume lock getting turned on on the iPod nano. This is a "feature" that limits the output volume to save little ears.

I don't know which nano you have, but somewhere in the neighborhood of Settings>>Playback>>Volume Limits

Alternatively, you can always try resetting your nano to factory. Method depends on your model.

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