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Woodwind Ultra Portable Amp!

post #1 of 31
Thread Starter 
Making a thread for an upcoming, amazing portable amp. The actually review will not be until later, but until I write that up, this will be like the Fiio X3 thread, where I'll post pictures and status updates! biggrin.gif
What I Know
  • Price will be $85 with a case and $65 without one.
  • Cases will be available to order separately, with a metal case (Don't know the color of the case yet) with an ash wood top and bottom, thus the name Woodwind. There will also be a cheaper, all plastic case.
  • On the current (1st) revision, there will be no volume pot to help keep the size down, reduce cost, and to eliminate channel imbalance, but he is thinking of adding it in a later revision. There will be a 6 and 12DB gain switch though.
  • The case less version should be out within the next two months depending on how the production goes, and the cased version in 4-6 months depending on how long the case design and contractors take.
  • The amp is designed for mobile use, trying to make a small amp for a cheap price to get more consumers interested in high quality audio.
  • The battery lasts over a day of high use in my tests.
  • The company making these is Critical Point Engineering, they are a commercial contracting company, and a guy by the name of Jonathan E. decided to make an amazing portable amp in a ultra portable design.
  • Specs from an email with the background of the checks: "Here are some of the measured performance numbers, specifications (measured on an Audio Precision Analyzer at an output level of 125mW, driving 32 ohms), and features:
  • SNR: -109.2 dB (A-Weighted) L&R
  • Dynamic Range: 109.4 dB Right, 109.6 dB Left (A-Weighted)
  • THD+N: 0.0023% (-93 dB) L&R
  • Freq Resp: +-0.14 dB 20 - 20000 Hz L&R
  • Max Output Power: 125 mW
  • Can drive headphones up to 1k ohms of impedance with up to 3Vrms
  • 18+ hour battery life (850mAh lithium polymer battery)
  • Supports TRRS headphones allowing headphones with a microphone to operate while connected through the amplifier
  • Supports battery charging through mini usb port (500mA) and 5V wall adapter (1A)
  • Battery level and charging indicators
  • fixed gain level (volume was intended to be controlled on the device sourcing the audio), the sample boards have 6dB of gain (2x volume) which seems to be just right for android and apple phones
  • projected price of ~$85
  • Attached are several plots showing the results of our Audio Precision Analyzer testing results. It would be the amplifier without the housing, but like most audiophiles, I'm sure you are mostly interested in the performance. Just a note on the performance specs. The numbers I listed above are tested at the maximum output power level, whereas the competition (Fiio to name one of the many companies) tests their products at lower output powers to improve their numbers and we still come out ahead!"
  • It works with headsets with a mic, and even includes a mic pass through.
  • The sound is well detailed, and has crisp highs and nice, punchy, but level lows in my brief impressions.

Pics (Taken by none other than the wonderful man of myself (Except the last one). tongue.gif):




And the charts are here. (It's a .PDF of them.)

Just look at this frequency response!

They are also working on a DAC about the same size made for mobile use, they already have the Apple USB Identification chips, and have tested it on the US Samsung Galaxy S3.
There will also be 12DB gain on the release version to minimize the amount of amplification on the phones amplifier chip, making it better sounding in theory, but my review version doesn't have this, so I can not comment on the difference.

(Disclaimer, I am not liable to insufficient funds for transportation, food, and electricity bills. tongue.gif Also, I am not a a member of the company or making any money off of the product, besides getting the product itself to review)
Edited by gopanthersgo1 - 3/29/13 at 7:39pm
post #2 of 31

Looks great! biggrin.gif

The FR graph needs a more appropriate scale, one div is 2dB, that's HUGE.

post #3 of 31
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by b1o2r3i4s5 View Post

Looks great! biggrin.gif
The FR graph needs a more appropriate scale, one div is 2dB, that's HUGE.
I'll need to email the guy asking for it I guess, thanks!
post #4 of 31

When will this little marvel be projected to be available?

post #5 of 31
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Oregonian View Post

When will this little marvel be projected to be available?
"The case less version should be out within the next two months depending on how the production goes, and the cased version in 4-6 months depending on how long the case design and contractors take."
Edited by gopanthersgo1 - 3/27/13 at 6:35pm
post #6 of 31

No fancy bling bling packaging no sell!!! tongue.gif

post #7 of 31
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by sfwalcer View Post

No fancy bling bling packaging no sell!!! tongue.gif
Case will be metal with an ashwood top/bottom... tongue.gif
post #8 of 31
Quote:
Originally Posted by gopanthersgo1 View Post


Case will be metal with an ashwood top/bottom... tongue.gif


WoW sounds classy. O.O Do want now. biggrin.gif

post #9 of 31
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by sfwalcer View Post


WoW sounds classy. O.O Do want now. biggrin.gif
Haha! It's TINY as well! And is AMAZING with HA-S500s, stock pads, no taped ports, and yes cup dampening. biggrin.gif
post #10 of 31

To be honest a great amp without volume control seems kinda pointless. You have to use headphone-out and double amping, which kinda defeats the purpose as most built-in amps are very sub-par. It might be great with a couple of DAPs that have clean headphone-outs or a pc and using the software volume control but definitely not even near a good solution, especially for mobile phones what seems to be their target. I hope they come to their senses and release a version with volume controls

post #11 of 31
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by kova4a View Post

To be honest a great amp without volume control seems kinda pointless. You have to use headphone-out and double amping, which kinda defeats the purpose as most built-in amps are very sub-par. It might be great with a couple of DAPs that have clean headphone-outs or a pc and using the software volume control but definitely not even near a good solution, especially for mobile phones what seems to be their target. I hope they come to their senses and release a version with volume controls
I mentioned that, and he is looking into adding it to a later rev.
post #12 of 31
Quote:
Originally Posted by gopanthersgo1 View Post


I mentioned that, and he is looking into adding it to a later rev.

Yeah, I  saw it - I just stated my opinion. It will probably be great with something like my Galaxy S.

post #13 of 31
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by kova4a View Post

Yeah, I  saw it - I just stated my opinion. It will probably be great with something like my Galaxy S.
Updated OP. wink.gif
post #14 of 31

ooh a phone dac, that's some thing we NEED. I don't EVER use my phone because it's so terrible sounding [I have a cheap droid] so a dac would be worth while! And the v-moda $500 dac amp or what ever it is is WAY out of my price range -.- 

post #15 of 31

Can the TRRS compatibility on this amp be used to control the VOL and track skip functions, when combined with headphones that have buttons on the cable?

 

thanks

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