Headphone Amplifiers

Headphone users make up a large segment of music listeners. As headphones have steadily improved in quality - especially in the past 5 years - they will reveal the short-comings of basic headphone outputs in preamplifiers, integrated amplifiers, receivers, and portable music players. In addition to providing low distorion and low noise floor power to drive the more demanding headphones, headphone amplifiers are available with high quality DACs and with volume control and ability to drive power amplifiers without the need of a preamplifier. Sophisticated high-end designs feature balanced outputs. Tube designs offer a slighly different listening experience.


There are some excellent portable headphone amplifiers with the means to sustain output for long haul plane flights.

Desktop solutions

You can get much better sound with a headphone amplfier with a high performance DAC than directly plugging into your laptop. Bring your current cans along for a demo.

  • Rega

  • beyerdynamic

  • Simaudio

  • Chord Electronics

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  • Rega Ear

    Rega Ear

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  • beyerdynamic

    beyerdynamic A1

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  • Moon 230HAD

    Moon 230HAD

  • Quad PA1

    Quad PA1

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  • Chord Electronics Hugo

    Chord Electronics Hugo2

  • Chord Electronics Hugo TT

    Chord Electronics Hugo TT

Under $500
$500 and up

Rega electronics
Under $2,000
$2,000 and up

Moon by Simaudio Quad Chord Electronics Hugo headphone amplifier