Introduction Earmen CH-AMP Headphone Amplifier
After attracting a strong following with its small portable devices in the headphone market, EarMen is back with its CH-AMP fully balanced headphone amplifier with excellent features and a linear power supply unit the PSU-3. This power supply is able to power all the desktop components of Earmen, like the Tradutto DAC and Staccato streamer. The CH-AMP has a balanced architecture, using 4.4mm connection, with gain control and an output power up to an astonishing 3.8 watts, with very low THD and SNR figures. The CH-Amp has two RCA inputs and one 4.4mm balanced input, so it can be combined with any analogue source.
Composite Amplifier Topology
The CH-AMP has been designed utilizing a composite amplifier topology, with the composite op-amp bringing the best of both worlds with excellent DC and AC characteristics. Miki Trosic from Earmen states:
“These composite amplifiers offer several advantages over other types. Power amplifiers typically use thermal feedback loops, thus causing serious errors while driving heavy loads. These errors occur due to self-heating. The use of composite can remove such errors and improves the performance of the circuitry. The composite amplifiers also offer better DC output offset. The excess of the load placed on the output transistors does not affect offset voltage. Adding to overall performance is the inclusion of a linear power supply that the company says “made without compromise, using the best components and the latest circuit design. EarMen Linear power supply is reliable, simplistic and produce minimal noise.”
The CH-AMP is further optimized using WIMA capacitors and electrolytes in combination with MELF low noise resistors and SoundPlus OPA1642 amplifiers which proved to be great for getting a neutral and natural sound profile. The result is also seen in the measurements, with a very low signal-to-noise ratio and THD, excellent frequency response and almost 4 watts in a very small chassis. The characteristics in sound even hardly change even at very high loads.
At the back of CH-AMP the preamp outputs can be found and on the front of the amp a gain switch. CH-Amp has balanced and single-ended preamp outputs, so you can connect to powered monitors for a complete system . The gain switch gives you better control of both output level and impedance, for better matching to your headphones.
Linear Power Supply – PSU3
Adding to the overall performance is the inclusion of a linear power supply that the company says “made without compromise, using the best components and the latest circuit design. The PSU-3 is reliable, simplistic and produces minimal noise.” It is made only for the needs of Earmen desktop devices in order to get the best characteristics and efficiency. The PSU-3 features protection against current overload, short circuit and thermal overload according to the highest safety standards. The big advantage of this power supply is that you can connect it to the EarMen Tradutto DAC and EarMen Staccato Streamer and get a great all-in-one system.
Pricing & Dealers
Earmen CH-AMP MSRP €1480 (incl the PSU-3)