The BEST Gaming Headphone Amps / DACs Right Now in 2021!

The BEST Gaming Headphone Amps / DACs Right Now in 2021!

One of the first steps of creating the best gaming audio setup in 2021 is to find the best headphone amp or DAC for the money they you can afford. In this video we review headphone amp / DAC combinations from Sound Blaster, EPOS, Schiit, Mayflower, Fosi and Syba including sound testing, software and microphone quality.

Buy items in this video from Amazon at the links below:

Fosi Audio Q4 DAC –
Mayflower ARC mk2 –
Sound Blaster X3 –
Epos GSX 300 –
Epos Sennheiser GSX 1000 –
Syba Sonic DAC Amp –
Schiit Fulla 3 –
Schiit Hel –
Razer Blackshark V2 –
Razer Blackshark V2 X –

Buy the Razer BlackShark V2 & Razer BlackShark V2 X direct from Razer:

BlackShark V2 X –
BlackShark V2 – ​

0:00 – Best Headphone Amp / DAC Intro
0:49 – The DAC / AMP Round Up
1:36 – Schiit FULLA 3 Review
2:59 – Fosi Q4 DAC Review
5:32 – EPOS GSX 300 Review
6:56 – SYBA Sonic Gaming AMP review
8:43 – Sound Blaster X3 Review
10:48 – EPOS GSX 1000 Review
11:58 – Schiit HEL Review
12:53 – Mayflower ARC MK2 Review
15:19 – Microphone Testing Roundup
17:37 – Best Headphone Amp / DAC Conclusion

Individual reviews:
GSX 1000 –
GSX 300 –
Fulla 3 –

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Review unit provided free of charge by the companies listed or were purchased by Hardware Canucks. This video is sponsored by be quiet!. As per Hardware Canucks guidelines, no review direction was received from manufacturer. As an Amazon Associate we earn from qualifying purchases.

Gear list (Available on Amazon):
Main Camera (Dmitry) –
Main Lens (Dmitry) –
Main Camera (Eber) –
Main Lens (Eber) –
Main 2nd Lens (Eber) –
Main Camera Mic (D & E) –
Cheap 4K Camera (Panasonic G7) –
Awesome Slider –
Our Shotgun Mic –
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#bestheadphoneamp2021 #bestgamingdac #hardwarecanucks


  1. Rebs Rebolledo on February 20, 2023 at 5:26 am

    can i use this on earbuds?

  2. TJK 900 on February 20, 2023 at 5:27 am

    Fosi is the best in my opinion.

  3. Tom Friberg on February 20, 2023 at 5:28 am

    Can I use ”DT990 Pro” with a (SYNA SONIC 24bit) to aux on my monitor and get amazing audio compared to my current headset (Razer Nari Ultimate)

  4. Rodrigo Marques on February 20, 2023 at 5:28 am

    Are any of these cards superior to the CREATIVE X3 or G6? For listening to music, any better quality than the X3/G6?

  5. Nagato Yuki on February 20, 2023 at 5:29 am

    the syba sonic has a disconnecting problem and i have no idea how to fix it. 🙁

  6. LEROO 007 on February 20, 2023 at 5:30 am

    hey i have a prodigy cube for headphones.And im using it for last 7 years and i want to know should i change it??? for Fosi or idk any suggestions plz im more stereo person and music thank you*

  7. John Jeriz Lopez Ignacio on February 20, 2023 at 5:30 am

    I would like to thank content creators from different worlds for always including at least two budget items to review. God bless your souls.

  8. keichan suzuki on February 20, 2023 at 5:31 am

    What’s a good dac/ amp for PC38X?

  9. a2raya on February 20, 2023 at 5:37 am

    i have The Objective2 (O2) would you say that’s much better than Behringer Micro amp HA400? which im currently using atm because the Object 2 power supply is faulty so need to replace it

  10. gan shengkai on February 20, 2023 at 5:37 am

    Hi, I need help. I usually direct plug in my headphone to PC and use Sound Blaster Cinema 3 software while playing FPS games. It has surround effect and right positional.

    But when I switch my iFi Zen DAC/Amp + Zen CAN Amp (Stack),
    Sound Blaster Cinema 3 software auto-disable. There is no surround effect and the positional feels very weird which only has left and right positional.

    So how to get surround effect and right positional while using external DAC AMP? (except those dac amps come with surround sound like sound blaster x3)

    Or is it there is no way as getting an external DAC would mean no surround sound for movies and gaming, just stereo 2-channel sound?

  11. kirua on February 20, 2023 at 5:38 am

    do all these amplifiers work with the DT990 headset?

  12. DaN77 on February 20, 2023 at 5:39 am


  13. Cj on February 20, 2023 at 5:40 am

    Is the fosi audio q4 good enough or should i stretch my budget to go for a spundblaster g6?

  14. M T on February 20, 2023 at 5:41 am

    Is there a dac for bluetooth earbuds?

  15. Julien Aspirot on February 20, 2023 at 5:44 am

    We need a 2023 video 🙂

  16. Laggmonstret on February 20, 2023 at 5:45 am

    Lowered the bass and increased the trebble?!?! Are you insane? MORE BASS! Hehe j/k 😀

  17. Alex Oelerich on February 20, 2023 at 5:45 am


  18. Thunder Kat on February 20, 2023 at 5:46 am

    Me using an asus Hero VII (4790K) and I listen to this video at 5% volume (30 Ohms head-set)…
    Movies do require going up as high as 40%, same as classic music. 100% would surely harm your ears in the long run.
    If he can barely game at max volume I guess he is using a 600 Ohms head-set and those things can’t do movies or classic music at all to be honest (at that level).
    I’m sure volume is a feature but for most parts is something they limit to protect the consumers, resolution, response to frequency, noise, crosstalk…so many things beyond signature alone.
    Most DACs have no surround sound, is a nice feature for movies and games you don’t wanna miss out, the big plus of having a soundcard that can comunicate with the PC via software.
    I’m kind of sold on the senheisers DACs, wish I could afford one 🙁

  19. Vortex Inertia on February 20, 2023 at 5:47 am

    I love you man lol youre funny!! thx for the video

  20. NorthernLaw on February 20, 2023 at 5:47 am

    A lot of these sound really good, definitely a good purchase.
    The other end of the spectrum would just be getting an actual audio mixer such as a GOXLR or Rodecaster Pro

  21. YoungWise2011 on February 20, 2023 at 5:50 am

    why no sound blaster gc7?

  22. Sean Chu on February 20, 2023 at 5:54 am

    Do you have for 2022?

  23. Jørn-Mulder on February 20, 2023 at 5:56 am

    how do you connect a usb headphone? like a HS80 Corsair to a Creative Labs Sound Blaster X3 External Sound Card ?

  24. Ryan Thomas on February 20, 2023 at 5:57 am

    Can you do this over but have Dac/headset combos at certain price points ?

    I want dt990s,but hesitant to purchase the right Dac to power it

  25. Vidwa De Seram on February 20, 2023 at 5:57 am

    Does the headset mic work with fosi q4

  26. Mau on February 20, 2023 at 6:00 am

    Do i need 2 y cables to connect my headphones, mic to amp then my pc?

  27. BlackCat0315 on February 20, 2023 at 6:02 am

    Any sound system is only as good as the speakers, or in this case, headphones. And it’s true that headphones sold as "gaming", are usually lower in quality as they only have to deal with the voice or in-game sounds. They don’t have to deal with all the nuances of music. As such, any amp is perfectly good for "gaming". In fact, for "gaming", you don’t need an amp at all so save your money.

  28. Jerome J. on February 20, 2023 at 6:04 am

    Fosi actually has a version of the Q4 with a microphone input, called the K5. I’ve been eyeing it but there are no reviews on the internet unfortunately.

  29. Kingkhan0440 on February 20, 2023 at 6:04 am

    So say if I was going to go for the DT 1990 pro what amp would I use?

  30. Burrow Joe on February 20, 2023 at 6:05 am

    Hello ,i have seen the upgraded version of Fosi Audio Q4 K5 PRO on the amazon ,could you please to have test for us that we can know more about the new version,thank you

  31. Jason G on February 20, 2023 at 6:08 am

    Hi I just got my prebuilt and obviously the audio is waayyyy different than my series x. I currently have a pair of steelseries 9 and I am having difficulty changing between game audio and discord audio. I do not know anything about this stuff but I want tot learn. So my question is, Will one of these act as an external volume setting for both discord chat and game audio??

  32. ANiCKiN on February 20, 2023 at 6:08 am

    Get a Sharkoon DAC Pro S – all you need. Perfect on a Notebook or PC.

    Wish i could use it on iPhone. Awesome little thing.

  33. Mr. Slippery on February 20, 2023 at 6:08 am

    Does anyone know if you can use both headphone outputs for 2 sets of headphones on the Syba sonic gaming amp? Looking for a dac/amp that can have both my sennheiser HD569 and 599’s (both 50 impedance).

  34. Ubacow on February 20, 2023 at 6:10 am

    The best gaming DAC/amp are non gaming oriented ones

  35. Ivan Ereš on February 20, 2023 at 6:11 am

    02:35 – Hahahaha.

  36. SirRFI on February 20, 2023 at 6:11 am

    Can we get 2022/2023 edition of this video? Thanks

  37. Hello Goodbye on February 20, 2023 at 6:12 am

    Schiit, how haven’t I seen this yet?

  38. Alex Worm on February 20, 2023 at 6:13 am

    If audio in gaming was as important as having good aim, pros wouldn’t be using pice of shit headphones.

  39. Kenneth91619 on February 20, 2023 at 6:14 am

    Any recommendation for a work pc that doesnt allow 3rd party drivers or software. Mostly looking to amplify my mic for "hard to hear" customers and play with volume for customers that scream or are too quiet. I hate yelling over my mic for old people

  40. David Desfosses on February 20, 2023 at 6:16 am

    Would love a review of the Fosi Audio K5 which does include a microphone Jack.

  41. Putzzz on February 20, 2023 at 6:20 am

    Bought an Aiyima DAC A-2 myself, its the same as the Fosi Q4 DAC. Experience so far using it for the past whole months with my Samson SR850 has been solid. It delivers wayyy more power than my headphones need LOL. At the loudest I would have it would be 12’o clock on the volume. I use the Bass and Treble knobs and have them set at 9 & 8’o clock respectively as setting them to the minimum made the sound mostly mids and not that lively.
    Yes, soundstage became a bit more forward as Dmitri said. But compared to my motherboard’s on board audio its a bit cleaner especially when there’s nothing playing.

  42. Benny SAP on February 20, 2023 at 6:20 am

    Hey Canucks,

    You do such great videos , can just tell it over and over again.

    But now i am hella confused of what i should by myself

    I want to use it only on my PC-Setup

    The first question, where peoples opionion splits is —–> DO I WANT DAC+AMP-Combo or is just an AMP enough?

    Devices i researched and i want to decide between are:

    Creative Sound Blaster X3
    Creative Sound BlasterX G6
    Schiit Fulla 4 – E
    Syba Sonic

    Schiit Audio Magni // Heresy
    iFi Audio Zen CAN
    FiiO K5 Pro
    Fosi Audio Q4 DAC
    JDS Labs Atom Amp
    iFi Hip DAC

    What would you say i should go for?


  43. Jørn-Mulder on February 20, 2023 at 6:20 am

    is there one with a normal usb connection ? how can i use that then ?

  44. NickNolteYT on February 20, 2023 at 6:20 am

    2:36 "almost pulled the Linus" 💀💀💀

  45. milose on February 20, 2023 at 6:21 am

    I don’t understand why you don’t include “regular” audio interfaces like Audient and Arturia..?

  46. DrunKen G on February 20, 2023 at 6:21 am

    Can you review the new Fosi Audio K5 Pro Gaming DAC Headphone Amplifier? or make latest gaming DAC 2023 edition?

  47. ForWhomTheBellsTolls on February 20, 2023 at 6:22 am

    In my world headsets and headphone amps are dying, a USB interface can give you the same and a bit more for the same money today, shure its bulky with an microphone but at the same time you can get a 20-30$ one that sound WAY better than any headset out there.

  48. Eligio Jeanton on February 20, 2023 at 6:22 am

    Question bro, even if the fosi Q4 does not have independent micro plug in. The micro in my headsets will still working? Thanks

  49. Diego Montesdeoca on February 20, 2023 at 6:23 am

    Dmitry we need a 2022 update.

  50. Brendon Steyn on February 20, 2023 at 6:25 am

    Im a little late to the (DAC) show, as I’ve just purchased a Asus z690-a motherboard. Did not realize there was no optical digital output on the back of the MB when purchasing and the system is all built up. As I have ‘Edifier R1850DB Active Bookshelf Studio Speakers’ which DAC would be a good setup for these speakers? I suppose I will need to use the audio out 3.5mm out the back of the motherboard, and not a USB connector.

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