• WANTED: Happy members who like to discuss audio and other topics related to our interest. Desire to learn and share knowledge of science required as is 20 years of participation in forums (not all true). There are daily reviews of audio hardware and expert members to help answer your questions. Click here to have your audio equipment measured for free!

HifiBerry AMP60 Stereo Amplifier Review

Rate this amplifier:

  • 1. Poor (headless panther)

    Votes: 55 33.1%
  • 2. Not terrible (postman panther)

    Votes: 90 54.2%
  • 3. Fine (happy panther)

    Votes: 18 10.8%
  • 4. Great (golfing panther)

    Votes: 3 1.8%

  • Total voters
    166

amirm

Founder/Admin
Staff Member
CFO (Chief Fun Officer)
Joined
Feb 13, 2016
Messages
39,116
Likes
174,607
Location
Seattle Area
This is a review and detailed measurements of the HifiBerry AMP60 made for RPi form factor. It costs US $44.90 and was kindly dropped shipped to me by a member.
HIFIBERRY AAMP60 RPi stereo amplifier HAT Review.jpg


While the unit looks like a typical RPi "HAT," it is actually a stand-alone amplifier with no dependency on the RPi computer. It does however have headers for input which mate with company's own DAC (output). For testing, I just wired up a set of RCA cables to the header.

You are responsible for supplying a power supply with a voltage of up to 20 volts. No current specifications are provided. Strangely, the spec sheet goes up to 24 volts. I powered it using my Keysight lab power supply, set to 20 volts with maximum current of 3 amps.

The core of AMP60 is the TI class-D TPA3128D2. In use it barely got warm so perhaps it could run at higher voltage than 20 (rated to 26 volts).

HifiBerry AMP60 Measurements
As usual let's start with our 5 watt output into 4 ohm load using 1 kHz tone:
HIFIBERRY AAMP60 RPi stereo amplifier measurements.png


Distortion is quite high, limiting SINAD to "fair" category in our rankings of nearly 190 amplifiers tested to date:
best DIY amplifier stereo review.png


Note that gain is rather low by typical amplifier specs but perfectly fine to mate to current set of DACs. Maximum output is achieved at around 1.25 volt with 4 ohm so you are good to go there.

The low gain helps it achieve excellent signal to noise ratio:
HIFIBERRY AAMP60 RPi stereo amplifier SNR measurements.png


Crosstalk is very nice as well:
HIFIBERRY AAMP60 RPi stereo amplifier Crosstalk measurements.png


Frequency response though shows typical load dependency we see in this class of amplification:
HIFIBERRY AAMP60 RPi stereo amplifier Frequency response measurements.png


So depending on the speaker impedance, your high frequency may be softened or exaggerated some.

Multitone shows sharp increase in distortion at both ends of the frequency spectrum:
HIFIBERRY AAMP60 RPi stereo amplifier Multitone measurements.png


Power is modest but considering how tiny this board is, shows how far we have come:
HIFIBERRY AAMP60 RPi stereo amplifier Power 4 ohm measurements.png


Transfer function/graph is quite odd looking and shows the high distortion we have seen. Same is true of 8 ohm response:
HIFIBERRY AAMP60 RPi stereo amplifier Power 8 ohm measurements.png


Clipping is so sharp that allowing for 1% THD doesn't get you any more power:
HIFIBERRY AAMP60 RPi stereo amplifier max and peak Power 4 ohm measurements.png


Finally, we see the not-so-nice distortion graphs for different frequencies:
HIFIBERRY AAMP60 RPi stereo amplifier Power 4 ohm vs frequency measurements.png


And typical drop in power at 20 Hz which sadly is where you need most power.

Conclusions
The AMP60 is a delightful form factor and sports some good measurements such as noise. Alas, it generates good bit of distortion and of course power is modest. For secondary use in a workshop or bedroom, it might be fine if you are building a system around Raspberry Pi and company DAC. You would have to provide a power supply though so price goes up, getting closer to a typical desktop amp.

Despite my emotional bias to like the little amp, I can't recommend the Hifif Berry AMP60 based on its distortion. Wish they had tried harder to produce a more performant product.

----------
As always, questions, comments, recommendations, etc. are welcome.

Any donations are much appreciated using: https://www.audiosciencereview.com/forum/index.php?threads/how-to-support-audio-science-review.8150/
 

MarcosCh

Major Contributor
Joined
Apr 10, 2021
Messages
1,235
Likes
850
Nice that it exists with the right form factor and stackability for a little tiny streamer/dsp/amp project. But 2 power supplies is very ugly. If it could somehow provide 5 volts to the pi...
Thanks for reviewing this, i always wondered.
 

Blumlein 88

Grand Contributor
Forum Donor
Joined
Feb 23, 2016
Messages
15,878
Likes
26,643
Low noise, but fairly high distortion and much of it higher order meaning it may not be masked very well by the main signal. Too bad indeed.
 

tonycollinet

Major Contributor
Forum Donor
Joined
Sep 4, 2021
Messages
2,730
Likes
3,892
Location
UK/Cheshire
Really nice to see you reviewing stuff like this. Nice budget one box streamer/amp solution for a non critical listening area if you already have some spare speakers.

Having said that - there'd probably be much better performance without this amp, and the Pi/dac driving a budget set of powered speakers instead.



Small correction : on the power / distortion chart it says "Power limited to 13W at 20ohm" - should be 20Hz.
 

abdo123

Master Contributor
Forum Donor
Joined
Nov 15, 2020
Messages
6,451
Likes
6,491
Location
Brussels, Belgium
I’m looking for a small board amplifier to use for ground plane measurements but almost Class D boards have speaker load dependency.
 

martin900

Active Member
Joined
Jan 31, 2020
Messages
106
Likes
103
This is a HAT board for the RPi, isn't it? If so - I'd consider it amazing performance for only a 'toy.'
 

fordiebianco

Active Member
Forum Donor
Joined
Mar 11, 2020
Messages
237
Likes
459
Location
Essex, UK
I have one of those, sitting on an RPi 3, powering a pair of old Mission 73 for streaming duties in my shed. Works perfectly well, convenient due to it's tiny formfactor, and with those speakers I am sure that the amp is not the limiting factor in the chain.
 

Koeitje

Major Contributor
Joined
Oct 10, 2019
Messages
1,853
Likes
2,995
I would use something like this in a mini arcade cabinet based on a Raspberry Pi.
 

Timbo2

Senior Member
Joined
Feb 27, 2018
Messages
496
Likes
394
Location
USA
My guess given what looks like a barrel connector is that it was designed to run off one the many generic 19V laptop power supplies.

Most of them put out between 2A and 4A and have wildly different levels of build quality and certifications.
 

GWolfman

Addicted to Fun and Learning
Forum Donor
Joined
Nov 3, 2020
Messages
513
Likes
735
Surprisingly noise doesn't look too bad (if I'm reading it right). I would think distortion is an easier fix (speaks my ignorant self), so I hope version two could at least remedy this.
 
Top Bottom