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Budget EU amp for HifiMan HE4xx

Rogozow

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#1
Hey,

I got a pair of HifiMan HE4XX incoming from (Mass)Drop, and if i get a set that actually works as intended then i have read that an amplifier is recommended.
So, i'm looking around and have browsed the forums(Great forum you got going here btw! :) ) plus availability in the EU for a budget alternative, but i am still a little bit unsure.. Most important is ofc sound, but aesthetics is somewhat an requirement too since it's going to sit smack center in my livingroom.

I'm looking at VMV VA2 but could not find anyone pairing that one with the HE4XX's, does anyone know if it's a good pair?

Or do you have any other tips on amps that i could pair with the HE4XX, which also have an availability in the EU and is around 100$ or lower?

Already got a DAC, so i only need the amplification
 
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#2
Welcome,

I'm looking at VMV VA2 but could not find anyone pairing that one with the HE4XX's
No need to. The specs of the headphones + specs measured here should be enough for guessing what is best. I guess @solderdude would have some thoughts about that. ;)

Once you're in EU, I guess the Atom is out of option. Pity. Oh wait, it seems available for more or less the same price than VA2:

http://www.hifiheadphones.co.uk/jds-labs-atom-headphone-amplifier.html

UK £ is rather low these days...
 

Rogozow

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#3
Welcome,



No need to. The specs of the headphones + specs measured here should be enough for guessing what is best. I guess @solderdude would have some thoughts about that. ;)

Once you're in EU, I guess the Atom is out of option. Pity. Oh wait, it seems available for more or less the same price than VA2:

http://www.hifiheadphones.co.uk/jds-labs-atom-headphone-amplifier.html

UK £ is rather low these days...
Thanks for the welcoming!

Ah yes ofc, after reading so much you just get the impression that different amps doesn't work with different headphone. Perhaps that's just an impression that has stuck with me from reading about tube amps..

What the.. I believe i just checked that site yesterday or even today and it said "pre-order" or something, now in stock.. Well thanks :D

If Hifi-express is a legit site though, they have the VA2 for 50$ shipping from Germany
https://hifi-express.com/collection...le-headphone-amplifier?variant=27335856750692

So, if that is the case, is the Atom really worth 3x the price?
VA2 50.39$ + free shipping = 480.93 SEK
Atom 109.99£ + 17.49£ = 1467.26 SEK
 

solderdude

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#4
VMV VA2 will work with the HE4XX (need to use the 'high' output)
The Atom can play a bit louder.
 

Rogozow

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#6
VMV VA2 will work with the HE4XX (need to use the 'high' output)
The Atom can play a bit louder.
Alright, great to know both has got the juice, thanks! :)

It does... Quite a lot. The Atom is a State of the Art piece of gear for the money. You will be happy with it long term. I was was you, I wouldn't hesitate a second. ;)
Yea i realize that so it's a little dilemma, my budget for these things is already topping out so i'll have to do some thinking :p Thank you
 

Johnb

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#7
$50 for the SMSL seems kind of cheap - I see it going for >$100 on sale over here. You might be suspicious. For that price, it is nice.

Other than that, assuming you can afford it, the Atom's low Noise & Distortion with low impedance headphones (i.e. Hifiman) is its' best characteristic. It is an order of magnitude better than most amps. At 33ohm 700 mW at .0005% S/N+D, over 1W at .001%

If you don't mind a battery powered amp, and can buy Topping products cheaply in UK, may I suggest NX3s for around $60
@33ohm SMSL 484mW .007% S/N+D
@33 ohm Topping 400 mW .0015 S/N+D slightly less power, but cleaner. Amir felt it to be underpowered with Hifiman. YMMV
 

Johnb

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#8
BTW, Amir seems to have loosened up as to what he recommends as sufficient power. He likes around 100mW for HD650, many of us are happy with half of that.
 

Rogozow

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#9
$50 for the SMSL seems kind of cheap - I see it going for >$100 on sale over here. You might be suspicious. For that price, it is nice.

Other than that, assuming you can afford it, the Atom's low Noise & Distortion with low impedance headphones (i.e. Hifiman) is its' best characteristic. It is an order of magnitude better than most amps. At 33ohm 700 mW at .0005% S/N+D, over 1W at .001%

If you don't mind a battery powered amp, and can buy Topping products cheaply in UK, may I suggest NX3s for around $60
@33ohm SMSL 484mW .007% S/N+D
@33 ohm Topping 400 mW .0015 S/N+D slightly less power, but cleaner. Amir felt it to be underpowered with Hifiman. YMMV
BTW, Amir seems to have loosened up as to what he recommends as sufficient power. He likes around 100mW for HD650, many of us are happy with half of that.
Ye i'm a bit suspicious about the site too, from what i could find it's supposed to be the direct retailer for SMSL/Sabaj/Loxjie or something? That would be the only thing that could make any sense.

Yea i know the Atom is supposed to be the go-to when it comes to lower cost amps. Although i'm not one to consider myself an listening expert or one that listens for imperfections too much, i'm more about getting the absolute best bang for your buck without cheaping out too much :)

I'll look in to the NX3s ! Thanks
 
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