This is my first time to “open box”. I learned that TEAC will launch the first portable amp & dac in March at around USD$300. Then I kept a close eye of it and imported it once it launched in Japan. I got it on Apr 4 and some locations in Japan still hadn’t get the product.
As this is made by Teac, the build is top notch. Strong, solid and the button push is smooth. Two cables are provided. One is purely for charging with USB plug. You can directly charge from the electricity plug / computer usb. Another cable is USB and micro ends which is used to connect the amp with computer. The size of the amp is same as the ipod touch 5 and the thcikness is 1.5 times of ipod touch which is smaller than Sony PHA-1.
The most selling point of this amp is the compatibility – you can flow signal by “line in”, “optical in”, “USB in via apple devices and Android device” and “micro usb in for window and mac computer”. However, if you use the micro usb to connect with the computer, it will get the signal and charge the amp in the same time, I feel the sound quality is affected a bit. Now go to the most important part – sound quality. The sound signature is clean and clear. It is very transparent and not warm and cold sound. I use the ipod touch to fill and pack with the amp. With the amp, the sound likes to open a “big door”, the sound becomes very open and dynamic but not change the sound signature. I used to own the RSA, corda 2Stepdance and Alo National and A&K10.
Comparing with RSA, I like the RSA house sound a lot. It is warm and comfortable. The HA-P50 seems another way round.
Comparing with corda 2Stepdance, the sound signature is similar now. Both are clean and transparent and no add any additive to the sound. If you like Corda amp, you can try HA-P50.
Comparing with A&K10 at the similar price point, the dac and amp sections of HA-P50 wins a lot and at different level. A&K wins at the size.
The direct competitor may be the Sony PHA-1 and PHA-2. I have heard PHA-1 only and heard the Sony house sound which is the part I dislike but this may be your apple. For PHA-2, the price is nearly double of HA-P50.
In the end, I think this is a cheap jewellery and worth to introduce the head-fiers esp the price is mid 2000 something. Thanks for watching.