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have you heard of the Art headtap amp?

post #1 of 11
Thread Starter 
It seems to be for live sound, but i'm wondering if anyone has heard of it and if it would be a decent first amp if I can get it for cheap.

Picture:
post #2 of 11
Yes, does anyone have info about this head amp.. is it good for beyerdynamic dt880's or sennheiser hd650's for example?
post #3 of 11
I like to know more about this too.
post #4 of 11
post #5 of 11
That's about all I could find too. I like to see what's inside.
post #6 of 11

After reading the review I said I had little to lose on this and went ahead and bought it. Here's my impressions after a couple of days.

 

To begin with, this product comes with no cables. If you want to connect this to anything you'll have to buy the cables. No issues here since, personally, I never go for the stock cables. Except that if you want to connect this to an integrated amp you're out of luck as there seems to be no commercial product available. Big thanks to forum member wje for sorting me out here.

 

So, as I own a few integrated amps, besides the MG Head, I was curious on what this gizmo could do. My Lambdas are connected with a Jadis DA-60 and I've connected the SRD7 to a few amps and always marveled at the level of performance coming through this french amp. I've always also lusted for a headphone out from the Jadis. Now I have one.

 

The Headtap is a passive device which is great as I don't see any added coloration being thrown into the mix. I played a bit with the tubes and just replaced the Mullard ECC82 grey plates with the black plates version and the differences popped out just there. The grey plates sound a bit brighter than the black plates; grey plates also have noise floor a bit higher... and the Headtap doesn't mask it. Great!

 

As for the sound... there's quite a significant difference listening to headphones out of the iPod and T4 combo when moving up to the MG Head. However, there's an even more significant jump with the DA-60 and Headtap combo. No law of diminishing returns here in spite of the fact that I could buy several MG Heads on tube price alone on the Jadis. I'm in audio heaven.

I also connected the Headtap to an Audiolab 8000S and there's your old analytical, detailed and cold sounding amp. Great sound. I'm looking forward to test this on other amps.

 

The HD600 (old drivers) never had such a driving and punchy bass. Closest thing to this was the old Gilmore Lite... but this was many years ago so, take it lightly. As for the MG Head, the bass comes out thicker and with less texture. The mids got an extra zing and crispness, especially with electric instruments and voices. The top end comes out with even more extension and airiness. Both amps drive the HD600 beautifully, but there's quite a large SQ gain with the Jadis.

 

The best surprise here came out of the HFI780. I figured, the Headtap was a great surprise with a high impedance can. Maybe it wouldn't be so great with a low impedance unit. Wrong.

I love the HFI780 for several reasons. They are cheap, closed, fun and sound good out of anything. Besides, with a couple of mods they grow up to a serious pair of cans. What I don´t like that much about them is the fact that they could do details a bit better and the solo piano is a disaster. Piano is now enjoyable and the details are pouring. It's like you've finally managed to calibrate your TV properly. There's nothing new on the screen, but it looks so much, much better.

 

I wanted to take a listen to the woodied MS2 but the silver recable meant I don't have an 1/4 adapter. Need to get one asap.

 

Due to being inexpensive and most headfiers don't invest on quality speaker amps, this thread will probably disappear again from whence it came.

 

My bottom line is: there's no need to spend a lot of money on both speaker and separate headphones amp when there's a Headtap around.

post #7 of 11

Totally agree - my experience of the Headtap was that it handled everything in the way of HP's, and was transparent allowing the speaker amp's character to shine through quite clearly.

 

Power is never an issue.... neither is voltage - so the type of HP's is irrelevant.

 

The cables and making them up is a bit of a pain.

 

The sound quality - well it is as good as your amp at its best - your amp will be cruising at its lowest power levels... so giving its best.

 

A typical class AB amp will be running in pure class A mode.

 

It's good stuff.

 

bye for now


David

post #8 of 11
Quote:
Originally Posted by xaval View Post

To begin with, this product comes with no cables. If you want to connect this to anything you'll have to buy the cables. No issues here since, personally, I never go for the stock cables. Except that if you want to connect this to an integrated amp you're out of luck as there seems to be no commercial product available. Big thanks to forum member wje for sorting me out here
I'm really interested in this thing, since I unexpectedly got a Yamaha YH-3 that sound like a tweeter I threw in another room with the kind of power I'm giving it. This seems to be the best solution without shelling out $$$ for a nice headphone amp.

Kind of baffled on how the cable works though. If you wanted to hook this up to speaker taps could you just solder two speaker wires to a TRS connector, with both wires using the same ground? That seems to be the gist of what wje what saying as far as I can tell.
post #9 of 11

I'm interested in hooking up a dynamic headphone to my line preamp.  Based on the manufacturer specs, I don't think it'd be safe to plug the headphone directly to the unbalanced RCA output due to impedance issues.

 

Quote:

Output Impedance      < 2K ohm
Output Level      2-20V P-P max.

 

I ran across the ART HeadTAP (http://www.head-fi.org/products/art-headtap-headphone-amp/reviews) while looking at some suggested DIY solutions on the forums.

 

Would this be the device I'm looking for, to protect both the preamp and headphones from damaging each other?  From my understanding, the HeadTAP is a purely resistor-based solution, rather than integrating opamps (which the DIY suggestions seem to lean towards).  I'm assuming a resistor-based solution would do very little to influence the sound from a preamp or speaker power amp.

 

Are there any other solutions on the market I should look at?  Given that this kind of functionality isn't exactly rocket science, my assumption is that there's no need for an over-engineered solution for this particular function.

 

For headphones, I'd be starting with a SR225i, and will probably pick up a HD800 or LCD2 R2 someday.


Edited by Elysian - 11/15/11 at 2:06pm
post #10 of 11
Quote:
Originally Posted by dlaloum View Post
 

Totally agree - my experience of the Headtap was that it handled everything in the way of HP's, and was transparent allowing the speaker amp's character to shine through quite clearly.

 

Power is never an issue.... neither is voltage - so the type of HP's is irrelevant.

 

The cables and making them up is a bit of a pain.

 

The sound quality - well it is as good as your amp at its best - your amp will be cruising at its lowest power levels... so giving its best.

 

A typical class AB amp will be running in pure class A mode.

 

It's good stuff.

 

bye for now


David

How does the Headtap do with low impedance headphones (32-120 ohms)? My vintage receiver has a 40 ohms output, which is way too high for my low impedance headphones and makes the bass boomy. Does the Headtap have a low output impedance?

post #11 of 11
The only negative with low imp. HP's is that with some amps the background noise becomes audible. ( hiss)

The better the amp, the less likely the problem. It was not an issue with ky quad amps.
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