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The ugliest headphone amp on the planet?

post #1 of 94
Thread Starter 
Probably this:



An impulse buy off ebay this has got to be the ugliest looking headphone amp I have ever seen! When I unwrapped it it looked more like a container for a very large adult toy than it did a headphone amp.

This is the "HeadCase" amplifier which was sold by Hi-Fi News & Record Review as one of their high quality range of Hi-Fi accessories. Circa 1987 this has got to be one of the oldest and fugliest looking amps I have come across in quite some time.

Fresh from the box it sounded ok but there is no way this lump of black ash veneered chipboard eyesore is going to sit alongside the rest of my equipment.... it may be functional but man it looks like a right old dog.

Not quite sure what I'm going to do with it...... probably replace the old caps, replace the carbon resistors with metal film types and fit an alps RK27 pot.... it sounds just too good to throw in the bin so suggestions on a suitable enclosure welcome.

Is this the ugliest amp in the world or do you know of an even uglier one?

















post #2 of 94
Fugly indeed. But remember, sound comes first, looks come second.
post #3 of 94
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by LFF
Fugly indeed. But remember, sound comes first, looks come second.
Well, yes but this thing is almost 2 feet long and is not exactly "discreet" in the aesthetics department. the black ash vinyl wrap doesn't do it any favours either
post #4 of 94
The circuit layout of that thing looks less a circuit and more some kind of abstract art....
post #5 of 94
Quote:
Originally Posted by kyrie
The circuit layout of that thing looks less a circuit and more some kind of abstract art....
I was going to write exactly the same thing Makes me think of a Nazca drawing of a bird.
post #6 of 94
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by kyrie
The circuit layout of that thing looks less a circuit and more some kind of abstract art....

Yeh, it is pretty funky indeed. You've just got to love the potentiometer fitted right next to the phono sockets and the 14 inch long shaft extension to the knob, sure is a pretty weird amp but it doesn't sound half bad.. I believe this thing retailed for £82.95 back in the late eighties and was considered pretty good quality
post #7 of 94
Quote:
Originally Posted by PinkFloyd
Not quite sure what I'm going to do with it......
Nice piece of log, would be useful in the fireplace on a cold night
post #8 of 94
Actually i think the x-can is uglier =P
post #9 of 94
Oh, it's not that bad, pink. Depending on your home decor, that wood grain look can blend in very well and you wouldn't notice. It's good camoflauge.
post #10 of 94
That thing is awesome !
Excellent footrest for playing Classical Guitar ~
post #11 of 94
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by socrates63
Oh, it's not that bad, pink. Depending on your home decor, that wood grain look can blend in very well and you wouldn't notice. It's good camoflauge.
oh pleeeease! it would blend in if I had black vinyl carpets, black vinyl wallpaper and black PVC furniture.... thing is I don't
post #12 of 94
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by canloader
That thing is awesome !
Excellent footrest for playing Classical Guitar ~

From the look of it someone has been using it as a footrest
post #13 of 94
Man, that thing is UGLY! So were there pictures in the listing when you bought it, or did you buy it sight unseen? I guess it makes a good conversation piece, though. Your original post makes it sound like you didn't know what it looked like before you bought it.
post #14 of 94
Maybe refinish it? Saw off the corners/edges, round 'em off with sandpaper then strip the paint and either leave it 'real wood' color or paint it... or something...

Edit -- might look cool afterward with some ~10cm or so wooden legs on the bottom...
post #15 of 94
Gawd, I think it's really cool. Especially the faux ebony wood-grain finish. But then my favourite preamp is my Croft Mega-micro with two fugly caged black steel boxes and the toggle switches (full dual mono). Looks like a tubed radio transmitter that escaped from a Luftwaffe boot camp.
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