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Audiophonics HPA-S400ET or something else? [suggestion]

easyrider82

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Hi all,
i'm about to buy new amplifier and i was about to go for this one: Audiophonics HPA-S400ET
Since i'm living in europe, seems of an excellent price/quality ratio.
My requirements, apart from best possible mesures/peformance, are:

- no more than 2000 EURO
- at least 70 watt power on 8ohm
- xlr balanced inputs
- good with RME ADI-2 DAC FS used as a preamp:
i fear the S400ET has too much gain and i have to run the RME at very low DBu not optimizing the DAC SN/R available at my listening levels.
The great thing would be having on the amp a variable input sensitivity. i would avoid buying passive attenuators if possible.
I will run very high sensitivity speakers too with this amp so i was thinking at this possible issue.

Would you be so kind to help me on this points or suggest me an equally high performance amp more suited to my needs?
 
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easyrider82

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well i found the gain settings jumpers when looking for more precise info! great! not sure still if even with bypass of the preamp it can integrate well with RME ADI-2 DAC FS. It should!
 

amper42

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Hi all,
i'm about to buy new amplifier and i was about to go for this one: Audiophonics HPA-S400ET
Since i'm living in europe, seems of an excellent price/quality ratio.
My requirements, apart from best possible mesures/peformance, are:

- no more than 2000 EURO
- at least 70 watt power on 8ohm
- xlr balanced inputs
- good with RME ADI-2 DAC FS used as a preamp:
i fear the S400ET has too much gain and i have to run the RME at very low DBu not optimizing the DAC SN/R available at my listening levels.
The great thing would be having on the amp a variable input sensitivity. i would avoid buying passive attenuators if possible.
I will run very high sensitivity speakers too with this amp so i was thinking at this possible issue.

Would you be so kind to help me on this points or suggest me an equally high performance amp more suited to my needs?

Hi,
I'm running the Boxem 4215/E2 with the RME ADI-2 DAC FS. I put the gain in AUTO mode and it works fabulously. The Puifi based Boxem offers three gain settings, uses the OPA1656 on the input board and automatically turns off after 10 minutes when no music is playing. It's a great solution that would work perfect for your setup with the RME ADI-2 DAC FS.

 

anphex

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easyrider82

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Thank you all for the suggestions. i was really hit by Amir review and the amp seems to fit gerat for me. Getting back to you:
@amper42 thanks for sharing your experience, yes the Boxem seems to fit great too!
@anphex why you say it will be better for long term compared to the 400?
@brunes thanks for the suggestion, but i'd stay with the more powerful 400, i have also power hugry speakers at home, and want to be able to drive them in the future with this amp.

Other question: there's even the monoblock version of the 400, both cost a few euro less than the stereo. the only different thing is the power supplies (HYPEX SMPS600N400) compared to the stereo (Hypex SMPS1200A400) . purify modules and propietary audiophonics card is based on the same Texas Instrument chip.
Do you think, apart from usability and cables there's any difference between the stereo model and the monos?
 

Rja4000

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Hi
I use this amp with the ADI-2 Pro fs R.
They work really well together.

I'm not too worried about DAC output level: I left the amp on default gain and use 4dBu output range.
If I was, I could still change/lower the amp's gain.

There are other valid options, for sure.

Price has decreased on Audiophonics since I bought mine. If I was looking for another amp, I'd most probably buy the same.
 
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amper42

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Hi all,
i'm about to buy new amplifier and i was about to go for this one: Audiophonics HPA-S400ET
Since i'm living in europe, seems of an excellent price/quality ratio.
My requirements, apart from best possible mesures/peformance, are:

- no more than 2000 EURO
- at least 70 watt power on 8ohm
- xlr balanced inputs
- good with RME ADI-2 DAC FS used as a preamp:
i fear the S400ET has too much gain and i have to run the RME at very low DBu not optimizing the DAC SN/R available at my listening levels.
The great thing would be having on the amp a variable input sensitivity. i would avoid buying passive attenuators if possible.
I will run very high sensitivity speakers too with this amp so i was thinking at this possible issue.

Would you be so kind to help me on this points or suggest me an equally high performance amp more suited to my needs?

Below are my reasons why I prefer the Boxem 4215/2E to the Audiophonics HPA-S400ET.
1. The 4215/2E comes with an auto on/off feature that turns power down to 0.5W (standby) after 10 minutes idle with no music detected. It turns the amp back on after music is detected. That's not available on the HPA-S400ET. Instead, you rely on a trigger that the RME ADI-2 DAC FS doesn't support. You could pay more dollars for the ADI-2/4 Pro SE with trigger support. Kind of a waste of money if you don't need the other Pro SE features.

2. The HPA-S400ET uses the LM4562 OPA, not the TI OPA1656 recommended by Bruno of Purifi. It offers an 8pin socket to put in another OPA model later, but I would rather get the OPA1656 that comes with the Boxem 4215/2E.

3. The binding posts that come with the HPA-S400ET are a lower grade BP-207 Carbon / Gold plated binding posts that are available for $20 separately. The Boxem 4215/2E Purifi comes with ETI BP-20C binding posts made with Hardened Copper with an IAC Rating of 102%. They run $60 a pair separately. Optionally, you can upgrade to KYRO silver plated binding posts with Boxem.

4. You can spend more on two mono Purifi amps, but I don't hear a difference and they take up twice the space and twice the electricity use at reasonable volumes. The Boxem 4215/2E Purifi amp uses 14W while playing at 73dB volumes on my speakers. That's amazing power efficiency that the Hypex designs can't match.

The superior ADI-2 DAC FS compatibility, the OPA1656, upgraded ETI binding posts and the build quality of the Purifi Boxem 4215/E2 amp makes it the choice for me.

 
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easyrider82

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Below are my reasons why I prefer the Boxem 4215/2E to the Audiophonics HPA-S400ET.
1. The 4215/2E comes with an auto on/off feature that turns power down to 0.5W (standby) after 10 minutes idle with no music detected. It turns the amp back on after music is detected. That's not available on the HPA-S400ET. Instead, you rely on a trigger that the RME ADI-2 DAC FS doesn't support. You could pay more dollars for the ADI-2/4 Pro SE with trigger support. Kind of a waste of money if you don't need the other Pro SE features.

2. The HPA-S400ET uses the LM4562 OPA, not the TI OPA1656 recommended by Bruno of Purifi. It offers an 8pin socket to put in another OPA model later, but I would rather get the OPA1656 that comes with the Boxem 4215/2E.

3. The binding posts that come with the HPA-S400ET are a lower grade BP-207 Carbon / Gold plated binding posts that are available for $20 separately. The Boxem 4215/2E Purifi comes with ETI BP-20C binding posts made with Hardened Copper with an IAC Rating of 102%. They run $60 a pair separately. Optionally, you can upgrade to KYRO silver plated binding posts with Boxem.

4. You can spend more on two mono Purifi amps, but I don't hear a difference and they take up twice the space and twice the electricity use at reasonable volumes. The Boxem 4215/2E Purifi amp uses 14W while playing at 73dB volumes on my speakers. That's amazing power efficiency that the Hypex designs can't match.

The superior ADI-2 DAC FS compatibility, the OPA1656, upgraded ETI binding posts and the build quality of the Purifi Boxem 4215/E2 amp makes it the choice for me.

@amper42 thank you again!
i'm starting sayng that to me the Boxem makes more sense just because of the fantastic orange front plate! i'm serious, love it!

1. to me it's kinda useless function, makes sense to someone who likes it or find it useful.
2. apart from the suggestion of the purifi module designer and the thing you can swap it later, what are the main differences between the 2 chips?
3. Don't think i can appreciate the difference, but i agree it's a better quality part.
4. The monos cost 80$ less than the stereo, they take of course more space and cables, but what about the power consumption? i beg your pardon, but i'm not sure how much of a difference there is in terms of consumption, would you please tell me more or less the difference?

Thanks for helping.
 

amper42

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@amper42 thank you again!
i'm starting sayng that to me the Boxem makes more sense just because of the fantastic orange front plate! i'm serious, love it!

1. to me it's kinda useless function, makes sense to someone who likes it or find it useful.
2. apart from the suggestion of the purifi module designer and the thing you can swap it later, what are the main differences between the 2 chips?
3. Don't think i can appreciate the difference, but i agree it's a better quality part.
4. The monos cost 80$ less than the stereo, they take of course more space and cables, but what about the power consumption? i beg your pardon, but i'm not sure how much of a difference there is in terms of consumption, would you please tell me more or less the difference?

Thanks for helping.

If you go with Purifi mono blocks you need to buy one for the left and one for the right speaker. While it might be $80 cheaper you certainly can't buy the second mono for $80. :p
As far as energy use, the majority of idle power and normal 70dB listening is used to support the power supply. So expect almost twice as much power use for idle and normal listening levels with two mono amps versus one stereo amp. Maybe not a big deal but extra energy use for sure.
 
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easyrider82

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If you go with Purifi mono blocks you need to buy one for the left and one for the right speaker. While it might be $80 cheaper you certainly can't buy the second mono for $80. :p
As far as energy use, the majority of idle power and normal 70dB listening is used to support the power supply. So expect almost twice as much power use for idle and normal listening levels with two mono amps versus one stereo amp. Maybe not a big deal but extra energy use for sure.
I was meaning both together are 80 bucks less than the stereo one :D not sure why, since the 2 chassis. maybe the 2 lower wattage PS are less than the more powerful one?

For the energy part, sure, it's just a waste, OFC better class D than 2 class A Krell monos :D. Negligible, but still stupid if it does not bring any advantage.
 
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easyrider82

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Which one do you have?
Infinity kappa 8. but in another room. I will use Royal device Laura mk2 and 3a Arioso with the amp. Just want to have something, in a possible future, that can work also with the kappa too.
 

amper42

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Infinity kappa 8. but in another room. I will use Royal device Laura mk2 and 3a Arioso with the amp. Just want to have something, in a possible future, that can work also with the kappa too.

The manufacturer’s ratings for the Kappa 8 include a frequency response of 33 to 44,000 Hz ± 3 dB, nominal impedance of 4 to 8 ohms, an efficiency (sensitivity) of 87 dB sound-pressure level (SPL) at 1 meter with 1 watt input, and a recommended amplifier power of 50 to 250 watts. These will be very easy for the Purifi amp to drive.

I'm using the Boxem Purifi 4215/2E with a pair of Revel F328Be towers and the RME ADI-2 DAC FS. Qobuz and CD rips feed the RME from a MacBook Pro running Audirvana. The Boxem Purifi amp can take these speakers to levels where I would need ear plugs. The sound is fantastic. I love using the RME Remote software which allows me to easily turn on or modify the Loudness settings or add EQ as desired.
 
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easyrider82

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At the end i decided and I'm listening to 2 Audiophonics monos AP300-M400ET.
Based on some considerations and availability too. I'm impressed with the sound!
They seem a match made in Heaven with RME ADI 2 DAC, I'm using the bypass mode going straight from XLR to Purifi modules.
Even with the smallest gain of the buffer card (20db) i get too much power for 91db 4ohm speakers. Working at -50dbr on the DAC. So makes no sense to use it.
I listen from -30dbr to -20dbr now. I still have a lot power available if i need, but i will hurt my ears a lot before.

The small DAC can drive very well the 4.4kohm impedance of the modules, with its 200ohm output (about 22x ratio).
I cannot hear any lack of dynamic or harshness in the sound. To be fair i even slightly prefer it to the sound with the buffer ON at 20db gain.
i don't think it's the buffer itself, since the difference is inaudible from measurements, maybe it's just the DAC working in a condition where it looses part of it's dynamic range.
Thank you all for the precious suggestions and help:)
 
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At the end i decided and I'm listening to 2 Audiophonics monos AP300-M400ET.
Based on some considerations and availability too. I'm impressed with the sound!
They seem a match made in Heaven with RME ADI 2 DAC, I'm using the bypass mode going straight from XLR to Purifi modules.
Even with the smallest gain of the buffer card (20db) i get too much power for 91db 4ohm speakers. Working at -50dbr on the DAC. So makes no sense to use it.
I listen from -30dbr to -20dbr now. I still have a lot power available if i need, but i will hurt my ears a lot before.

The small DAC can drive very well the 4.4kohm impedance of the modules, with its 200ohm output (about 22x ratio).
I cannot hear any lack of dynamic or harshness in the sound. To be fair i even slightly prefer it to the sound with the buffer ON at 20db gain.
i don't think it's the buffer itself, since the difference is inaudible from measurements, maybe it's just the DAC working in a condition where it looses part of it's dynamic range.
Thank you all for the precious suggestions and help:)
Am heading down that same path. I owned the stereo version of what you've just bought (AUDIOPHONICS HPA-S400ET). Really loved the sound but didn't care for the case design although I think they've changed it now (REALLY sharp cooling fins!) and decided aesthetically that 2 mono's look better than 1 stereo in my set up :). How are yours sounding now after a bit of usage?
 

Rja4000

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Really loved the sound but didn't care for the case design although I think they've changed it now (REALLY sharp cooling fins!)
I agree. Those sharp edge on the initial box version are really too sharp. Fortunately, I don't have to move the amp too often...
And the new box seems better.
 

Rja4000

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i'm about to buy new amplifier and i was about to go for this one: Audiophonics HPA-S400ET
Since i'm living in europe, seems of an excellent price/quality
Did you have a look at the AUDIOPHONICS LPA-S400ET ?
it's 1190 € now, so 200€ less than the bigger box version.
 

BR52

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Did you have a look at the AUDIOPHONICS LPA-S400ET ?
it's 1190 € now, so 200€ less than the bigger box version.
I use it as well in bypass mode more than a year. It’s fantastic .
 
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