EarMen CH-Amp

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100+ Head-Fier
Everything just falls into place!
Pros: Connectivity, build, aesthetics (very personal, but I love the look of the stack), synergy with the Tradutto...
Cons: Price is not cheap (but when factoring everything in, it's not expensive either)...

TLDR version on YouTube: TDLR - Earmen CH-Amp

The Earmen CH-Amp has been sent to me directly by Earmen for me post my opinions in this review. Earmen have not requested anything specific and, as always, I will do my very best to be as unbiased as humanly possible.

You can find the official page for the CH-Amp here: https://earmen.com/index.php/products/earmen-ch-amp

As with all links that I share, this is a non-affiliate link, meaning I do not receive anything in exchange for clicks or purchases.



Not long ago I reviewed the Earmen Tradutto, a DAC that I found (and find) to be very good, fitting my tastes and working well with all of the systems and set ups that I have at home. I said that my biggest issue with it was that I couldn’t decide where I wanted it as I liked it with all of my set ups.

Well Earmen very kindly decided to send along the CH-Amp, the headphone amplifier that is from the same desktop line and is designed to form a stack with the Tradutto DAC and, although it is a spoiler, Earmen have managed to decide for me where the Tradutto should live.

The CH-Amp is not the most economical of desktop amplifiers, with a retail price of just under $1500, although it is currently on sale direct from Earmen for $999, but it definitely has a lot going for it. Not only is it an amp that performs very well, it also has plenty of connectivity and even comes with an external low noise linear power supply, which is something that is usually a separate purchase when wanting to include one in your system, so the price starts looking quite favourable when taking it all of into account.

So, after almost a month of using the Earmen stack almost daily, and a lot of patience from Earmen as they have never asked when I am going to get around to reviewing it, here are my impressions.



As with the Tradutto, the unboxing of the CH-Amp proves that they put a lot of care into their packaging and presentation. There is nothing really specially about it, just that the whole procedure makes you feel like you are opening something that has been packaged with care.

Upon removing the (very heavy) box from the cardboard sleeve that shows images of the two units, along with more details, the lid flips up to show the first layer of thin cardboard underneath which, we find the user manual.

Beneath this first layer, we lift up the first layer of foam protection to reveal the amplifier in a cutout on the left side of the box and the included remote to the right, both extremely well protected.

After taking the amplifier out of the box (and the remote), underneath these we get even more protective foam which covers the linear power supply (again surrounded by foam) in the bottom with a box containing the cables to the right. The included cables are for power only but they include the necessary cables to power up to 4 components from the linear power supply. I will discuss more about this in a moment.

In general, as I said, it is not that there is anything special about the unboxing, it’s the amount of care and protection that has been put into the boxing of the devices which makes you feel like you have received something special.


Build and aesthetics…

The build and the aesthetics are an exact match for the Tradutto DAC, as these are designed to become a stack. I said when I reviewed the Tradutto that the aesthetics were more aimed at blending in than standing out, and that is still the case, except that now they are all stacked together, they do attract the eye.

With them stacked they very much remind me of the HiFi systems that I used to drool over when I was growing up (and later owned a few) just in a more compact set up. I have to say that I have had them on my desk at the side of me for the past month and I still enjoy looking at them. Again, they are not fancy designs, just 3 square black boxes with screens (two of them at least), but this mini HiFi stack just appeals to me. Simple yet cool.

Looking at the independent components, the amplifier is of the exact same dimensions as the DAC, with a matching screen that shows levels instead of bit rates. The screens are monochromatic but, again, there is something about there simplicity that I really like. No flashy coloured screens, just two bars that move to the rhythm of the music. These were the VU meters of my youth and while I do like (some) fancy aesthetics, these just attract me.

The power supply is of the same width and depth but with double the height, making the stack look like it is ready for business. While I am not overly keen on the blue LED of the power switch on the front (by the way, they all have their power on the front, hurray!), at least it is not so bright as to be annoying. Personally I would have preferred a white LED to match the indicator LEDs on the left (and the general vibe of the screens) but that is a minor complaint.

One thing that I will say is that these devices are heavy, all three of them! There is no risk of anyone ever knocking this stack off of the desk!



Let’s talk about the power supply first as it is quite simple. On the back of the unit there is an IEC input on the right of the device that is for the main incoming power (220V in my case). In the center we get 3x 12V outputs that can provide a total of 1.5A between them. Finally, on the left, we get a proprietary connector, well, it’s not really proprietary, just not a common cable you will find in your drawer, that outputs 2x 12V at 1.5A. This last connector is for powering the amplifier, whereas the normal 12V outputs can be used for powering the Tradutto or the Staccato (matching streamer) etc.

On the front of the power supply we have a main on/off switch (with a blue LED to indicate when powered on) with 2x small, white, LEDs to the left. One LED indicates that the normal 12V outputs are powered up and functioning, the other does the same for the 2x12V output (both labelled).

So, all you need to do is use the included cables and connect the 2x12V output to the CH-Amp and the other 12V outputs to any other Earmen devices you have in your stack (in my case the Tradutto). Flick on the power switch and away you go. Just as a warning, when you turn on the power supply before turning on the DAC (if relevant), Windows will give you an error message saying it doesn’t recognize the DAC. This error is resolved as soon as you turn on the DAC.

Ok, so now let’s look at the actual amplifier…

Starting from the front left, we get a 6.35mm unbalanced headphone output, then a 4.4mm balanced headphone output, the screen in the center, a button labelled “SEL”, a button labelled “GAIN” and finally, to the right, a voulme know that also works as a push button to mute (with a single press) or put the device in stand by (with a long press). When the unit has been muted and you unmute, the volume ramps up (stopping at any time if you touch the knob), which avoids sudden blasts of unexpected sound.

Moving around to the back, again from left to right, we have the power input, a 4.4mm balanced preamp output, an unbalanced preamp output on RCA’s, unbalanced input 1 (RCA’s), unbalanced input 2 (RCA’s) and then a balanced input (4.4mm).

As far as functionality, well first you hook up the relevant cables, turn on the power supply, press the volume knob and you are greeted with the Earmen logo on the screen as it boots. Once it has booted, the logo on the screen is replaced with two bars at the top that show the output level (digital VU meters in bar form), to the bottom left it indicates the current input, the center gives us the current level in digits (i.e: volume level, not dB level like the bars at the top), which go from 0 to 30, then in the bottom right corner it shows the current gain mode.

Turning the volume knob will obviously raise or lower the volume level, with a single press muting the device, the gain button switches between High and Low gain, while the SEL button cycles through the 3 available inputs (showing “BAL”, “L1” or “L2” on the screen).

All of this can also be done from the remote except for changing the gain. The only difference with the remote is that it has separate buttons for power and mute and has a + and - button for the input selection (it doesn’t cycle from the remote, you can go up or down).

One thing to note is that, when the unit has been off (or in stand by), when it comes back on, the volume level is automatically set to 0 (the same happens when plugging or unplugging headphones). There is a bit of a noise in headphones (and IEMs) when the unit is turned off or on from stand by mode. There is a relay that clicks as it it enters some kind of protection mode before turning off and also after it turns on, to protect headphones from power surges. This is great, but I did find that planar headphones weren’t overly happy when the relay clicked. It is not that it has done any damage to them but the noise you hear through planar headphones when it happens is not very enjoyable. With dynamic headphones (and IEMs), the noise is present but it doesn’t sound as scary as it does with planar headphones 😉 While I am not saying that the protection circuit will not work to protect planar headphones, I am sure Earmen have designed it to be more than capable, I do find that I prefer unplugging planars before entering stand by (and plugging them back in after it has booted).

So, as far as functionality it is all simple and straightforward. I have praised the Echo amplifier in the past for having three inputs and the same praise goes for the CH-Amp, in this case, one of them is balanced, so even better. We also get balanced and unbalanced outputs with preamp functionality which solves the comment I had about the Tradutto being great for powered speakers but not having volume control, well now we do.



While I have used various DACs to feed the CH-Amp, with the amplifier working well with all of them, the combination with the Tradutto DAC is certainly my preferred combination. We talk about synergy, which is very difficult to put into words but when something just clicks together, it just is. Could this be psychological? Of course. But as I have said before, I am more interested in what I feel I am experiencing than what % of it is just perception. This is to say that I have been using the CH-Amp paired with the matching Tradutto.

When I mentioned in the Tradutto review that I was struggling to decide where I wanted to place the Tradutto, as I liked it with all my systems, well, Earmen made that decision easy by sending the CH-Amp. The stack has been on my desk in the office and has been used daily, with all kinds of headphones and IEMs (both for pleasure and for review purposes), except when I have been testing other sources (in which case it has been a reference mark). In other words, I have spent many hours with this stack.

So, how would I describe the sound of the CH-Amp, especially when paired with the Tradutto?

I would say that it is just slightly on the warmer side of neutral. There is not a baked in warmth to the sound like we get with some other brands, nor is it cold or clinical like some other set ups I have on hand to reference. It is clean, detailed and very musical.

Again, it may be all in my head but when plugging into the CH-Amp, things just sound “right”. Of course, there is no “right” or “wrong” when talking about audio preferences, so this is highly personal, but I really feel that the Earmen stack has just the right balance between being very detailed and very enjoyable. Sometimes devices tend to exaggerate the presentation of details, making them become the center of attention, this is not like that. With very detailed tracks, using things like the Arya or the HE1000se, those details are very apparent, yet they don’t jump out at you and shout “listen to me!”.

Yet, connecting the Ananda (which I have always found to be a headphone that does put emphasis on detail and shout “listen to me!”), there is no rounding or smoothing of the Ananda’s performance, making it sound like the Ananda should.

With the HD6XX, there is no lack of that luxurious mid range that the headphones can produce (on the right day, when the stars align and I have had a good breakfast 😁 ), yet it is not smooth and fat (for lack of a better word) like it can be on a tube amp. Yes, I would still pick a tube amp for the HD6XX but only because I have heard the combo, not because there is anything wrong with the CH-Amp at all.

The CH-Amp puts out a maximum of 3.5W which is plenty for anything that I have currently available and I have found absolutely no issue with lack of current for planars either. In fact, I haven’t found I needed to put it in high gain at all, although, admittedly, my listening levels are quite low.

With IEMs, which I have used a lot of since the stack has been on my desk, the result is also great. There is no background hiss, even with more sensitive sets, and at no point did I find that anything strange was happening with anything that I tried.

There is great extension down into the subbass, bass is fast and punchy even on planars, while mids are musical and highs are extended and smooth. If anything, I would say that the high end is actually a little smoother than on many other setups but it is not rolled off or dulled down, if a set of IEMs is harsh or brittle in the higher ranges, the CH-Amp does not fix it, but there is no way that it exaggerates the problem either.

In general, I think that the CH-Amp performs wonderfully in the sound department and I really can’t bring myself to find fault with it.

As far as the preamp output, which is only active when headphones are unplugged, I can’t say that I can spot the difference between using the preamp output of the CH-Amp versus going direct from the Tradutto. This is great news as I really like the output of the Tradutto and the CH-Amp seems to just add volume control to it.



The CH-Amp is a great little amplifier that, paired with the Tradutto, really fits my taste and gives me anything I could need for my desk set up. I spend a minimum of 8 hours a day at my desk, using all kinds of headphones and IEMs, with speaker systems also available, and the stack gives me whatever I need when I need it.

The aesthetics are going to be a personal thing but I am a fan. Maybe it is a nostalgic thing for me as it really is like having a stack from my youth but in a smaller format on my desk. Sure, I would have preferred to skip the white text on the front of the devices but that is a very small complaint in comparison to all the praise that I can give this set up.

The normal retail price of this stack is $799 for the Tradutto plus $1,480 for the CH-Amp (including the power supply), so we are not talking about a cheap combo here. For almost $2,300 you have a lot of choice available, yet I feel that the Earmen line up is well deserving of being in the battle at that price. If we look at the current sale price (from Earmen direct at the time of this review), you can get the Tradutto for $499 and the CH-Amp for $999, which is almost $1,000 less and I think that takes from “good value” to just outright amazing!

As always, this review is available in Spanish both on my blog (www.achoreviews.com) and on YouTube (www.youtube.com/achoreviews)


Reviewer at Ear Fidelity
EarMen CH-Amp
Pros: A part of a great stack
Fantastic power supply included
Up to 3.8W of power
Gain selector
Highly technical, yet non-fatiguing sound
Pairs well with just about everything
A companion made in heaven for Meze Elite
Remote control
Cons: Definitely not cheap
Does not run the Susvara to its potential
No 4.4mm interconnect included

EarMen CH-Amp is a flagship desktop amplifier manufactured by EarMen. It is a fully balanced device, with a power output of up to 3.8W. It's priced at $1480.


If you’re a regular, then you probably are aware that we’ve reviewed most of EarMen products here at Ear Fidelity. It’s one of those companies that never disappointed us with their products, and there are no signs for it to change in the future.
Today, we’re taking a look at their flagship amplifier CH-Amp, which is a part of the EISA award-winning stack which contains the Tradutto, the Staccato (review soon), and the CH-Amp itself.
Having great experience with low to mid-Fi products, EarMen continued to improve and now they went into the higher-end category with this little amp. Their products always score well when it comes to sound here at Ear Fidelity, so having an actual higher-end device by EarMen got us really interested and excited.
Having such a great experience with EarMen products, however, makes me quite demanding when it comes to the CH-Amp. At such a price, EarMen has to step up their game and give us something extra when compared to their lower-end offerings. So, let’s just get right into it.


earmen ch-amp review, box

The unboxing experience of the reviewed CH-Amp is really good. As with most of EarMens products, it does come in a good-looking, quality box with an outer sleeve. Once again, you don’t really have to worry about the device arriving safely at your doorstep.
The unboxing experience unveils something that I simply have to glorify – the EarMen CH-Amp comes with a very high-quality linear power supply included. It’s called PSU-3, and it is actually designed to power the entire EarMen stack, so you can plug the CH-Amp, Tradutto, and Staccato into it and power everything out of a single PSU. The unit is well-built, just like the CH-Amp itself, and it just screams quality. Oh, and it comes supplied with all the cables to plug the rest of the devices into it, so you don’t have to go and get those. This is just fantastic, but also weird, because…
Not everything is rainbow and sunshine. The biggest con on the packaging of the reviewed EarMen CH-Amp is the lack of a 4.4mm interconnect cable included in the box. Both the Tradutto (DAC), and the CH-Amp are too small to utilize full-sized XLR sockets, so EarMen went with a 4.4mm pentaconn connection to ensure a fully balanced connection. This is a very good idea, don’t get me wrong, but there’s a catch. EarMen didn’t include a 4.4mm interconnect cable with neither the CH-Amp or the Tradutto. I, as a reviewer, didn’t have that sort of cable and I needed to buy one. It wouldn’t have been that problematic if 4.4mm interconnects were somewhat popular, but they surely aren’t. Actually, the only one I could find in my country to buy immediately is the iFi Audio one, and the Polish distributor actually had only 1 left in stock.
Remote of reviewed earmen ch-amp

I don’t want to make too big fuzz about it, but if EarMen decided to go with such an unpopular connection, they should have included the cable in the box. Yes, this generates further costs, but they could have easily raised the price just a bit to counter it. At this point, it’s not about the money, but rather just an inconvenience, as many people who ordered the EarMen stack wouldn’t be able to use it balanced for a fair amount of time, before their 4.4mm interconnect arrives. If you’re reading this review and you are going to order the EarMen stack, just order the 4.4mm Pentaconn interconnect now, it’ll save you some time and inconvenience.
Okay, enough criticizing. Apart from the EarMen CH-Amp, which is the main hero of this review, and the PSU-3, you’ll find a metal remote control, and just like with the Tradutto, this little guy is SOLID. Quite heavy, robust and it could come in handy when a zombie apocalypse begins, and stinky monsters will catch you off-guard while listening to music. Hopefully, you won’t have to do it.

Design and build quality of EarMen CH-Amp​

Top of the reviewed EarMen Ch-Amp

EarMen really got us used to their brilliant build quality, and of course, the reviewed CH-Amp continues to do it. The unit is quite heavy, very dense feeling and it looks great. The size is just perfect for any desk, or to sit on your hi-fi rack next to a turntable and such. The entire stack looks great and consistent, as it is really meant to be used in this way.
Of course, you can just get the CH-Amp and use it with devices from other manufacturers, there’s nothing wrong about it. However, if you want a full set that is both functional and just great looking, the EarMen stack is the way to go.
Back to the topic though. The front of the EarMen CH-Amp is occupied by a screen, 4.4mm output, 3.5mm output, a volume knob, and two buttons for gain and input control. While being quite busy on the front, it all looks well-organized and tidy.

Tech and I/O​


Let’s take a look at EarMen CH-Amps functionality and tech. First of all, the remote included with the reviewed EarMen CH-Amp is able to operate both the CH-Amp and the Tradutto DAC, so if you’re rocking these as a stack, one remote is all you need. Those are the little things that just make your life easier. Well done EarMen.
Next up, the reviewed EarMen CH-Amp is not only a headphone amplifier but also a preamplifier, which can be used as both balanced and single-ended. This is good news for all the people that use active monitors and are looking for a device that can handle both the monitors and headphones. Take note though, that you can only use it as one at a time.
As for the power ratings, the EarMen CH-Amp outputs up to 3.8W via balanced output, and up to 1.5W via single-ended one. While this might not look very impressive nowadays, the power rating is not the full story (just look at the Feliks Envy which has a lower power rating than Topping A90, yet it sounds much more powerful).
EarMen’s engineers also use WIMA capacitors as well as audio electrolytes in combination with MELF low noise resistors and SoundPlus OPA1642 operational amplifiers which – according to EarMen – proved to be great for getting neutral sound. The EarMen CH-Amp has excellent signal-to-noise ratio and THD characteristics, excellent frequency response, and a lot of power where the characteristics of the device are changed very little even at high loads.
Let’s get back to the PSU-3 for a moment. It is a linear power supply meant for powering the entire EarMen stack, but of course, you can use it with just the CH-Amp. It has all the necessary protection including current overload, thermal overload, and short circuit. This is a really quality power supply that further improves the sound quality of your system, as well as offering additional protection – what not to like?

How does the EarMen CH-Amp sound?​


EarMen never disappoints, but the sound quality has always been the most important aspect of their devices. The reviewed CH-Amp is their flagship amplifier, so my expectations were really, really high. And yes, what I’ve heard met the expectations, to say the least.
First of all, I’ve tried the EarMen stack for the first time at the Munich High-End 2022. After having a blast of a conversation with Miroslav (hi!), he invited me to have a listen to the stack with genuine pride on his face. The headphones plugged-in were the Meze Elite, which I also have on my hand. The sound completely blew me away back then, offering a very fresh, fast, and highly enjoyable sound.
After being so impressed by these products, I immediately turned to Miroslav to talk about reviewing them. I’ve reviewed the EarMen Tradutto a while ago, and was so happy with it that it won our “Best DAC 2021”. Ever since this is one of the most used DACs that we have here at Ear Fidelity. Luckily, both the Staccato and the CH-Amp arrived at my doorstep a few months ago, and now I’m more than ready to give it a proper review.
So, after spending a lot of time with the EarMen CH-Amp, I must admit that it sounds just like it did when I first tried it in Munich. EarMen definitely has its house sound, and the CH-Amp offers everything that EarMen is known for, and some more.
The overall timbre of the amplifier is natural yet technical, but never analytical. This is a neutral tuning with a hint of natural warmth, excellent technical performance, and a highly enjoyable character. The EarMen CH-Amp is not overly warm, bright, or lean sounding. Everything sounds “just right”, but with that added space with its excellent speed and resolution. Funnily, seeing that the EarMen crew chose the Meze Elite to highlight the sound of the stack is literally the perfect choice. This setup offers an extraordinarily natural, snappy, and dynamic sound that will please everyone.
Back to the amplifier though. Even though 3.8W might not seem impressive at first, I tried the EarMen CH-Amp with a handful of power-hungry headphones and never had any problems. Yes, it doesn’t drive the legendary HiFiMAN Susvara perfectly, but it was never meant to. This amplifier is not advertised as “the most powerful” on the market, but rather a Jack Of All Trades that can be used with a vast majority of headphones and IEMs.

As far as you’re using “normal” headphones, that do not require nuclear power to sound best, you’ll be more than fine. The CH-Amp has absolutely no problems running headphones such as the Meze Elite, HEDDphone, Audeze MM-500, FInal D8000 Pro, and such. It drives all of those with authority and spectacular quality that suits basically every timbre I’ve tried.

The bass of the reviewed EarMen CH-Amp is full of energy, it’s springy, fast and physical, but not overpowered. It has a great rumble in the sub-bass region that gives you a thick and natural presentation. This is by no means a bass-light amplifier in any degree, as this bass frequency focuses on sounding natural and enjoyable at the same time. The texture, resolution, and dynamics are all fantastic, which further helps your headphones to sound fun and engaging.
The midrange is clean, fresh, and detailed, but never too bright or thin sounding. It doesn’t overpower the weight of the instruments as well. It is just well-detailed and natural, further focusing on that neutral/natural type of presentation. This is the perfect type of midrange an amplifier can have in this price range, as your high-end headphones really don’t need to be altered. The sense of openness and the clarity are both spot-on resulting in a very accurate, yet ethereal type of sound.
The treble is once again clean, fast, and snappy, but it has a slight smoothness to it, so the reviewed EarMen Ch-Amp will never sound too bright or tiring. It doesn’t hide anything, nor does it sound artificially detailed. It sits in the middle, just where it should. Your headphones of choice will dictate the final type of treble presentation of the system, with the EarMen CH-Amp ensuring the detail, resolution, and speed are both on the highest level possible.
The soundstage is absolutely phenomenal in the reviewed EarMen CH-Amp. This little amp gives you a vast, airy, and spectacular-sounding soundstage without pushing it to the limit. It sounds easy, effortless, and highly impressive with every headphone and IEM that I’ve tried. It doesn’t try too hard to impress, it creates a natural sense of space that will perfectly blend with your headphones or IEMs.
Speaking about IEMs, the EarMen CH-Amp has a gain switch that works perfectly if you plan to use IEMs instead of headphones. I haven’t noticed any problems with hiss or background noise, once again proving that the reviewed EarMen CH-Amp might be the perfect amplifier for those of you who run multiple headphones and IEMs.


EarMen CH-Amp with Meze Elite


Let’s start the pairings section with probably the best one. The Meze Elite has been used by EarMen themselves during the shows with this amplifier, and this choice must have been intentional.
This setup sounds fresh, powerful, natural, fast, and spacious, with absolutely no problems whatsoever. It’s not too muddy, not too bright, there’s nothing that is overdone. The Elite might not be a demanding headphone when it comes to power, but it surely needs a good quality of your audio chain to sound its best. The Tradutto + CH-Amp combo works wonders with the Elite, being probably the best setup I’ve tried the Romanian flagship with.
The Elite rose to be my favorite pair of headphones personally, and I’m incredibly happy that it pairs so well with the EarMen stack. This has been my favorite setup for weeks now, it just sounds right in every way. You can go for a more detailed or specialized setup, but when it comes to an effortless, clean, powerful, and natural sound, this pairing is hard to beat.

EarMen CH-Amp with Final D8000 Pro​


This is another great pairing. The D8000 Pro is a neutral, reference-tuned headphone that can lack emotions and musicality. The reviewed EarMen CH-Amp provides all the necessary power, cleanliness, and pace to keep up with the Japanese flagship, while not overemphasizing its rather raw and transparent tuning.
This combo sounds rather neutral though, so keep that in mind. If you’d like to add a little body and warmth to your D8k Pro, this is not the right amplifier to do that. However, if you’re into that transparent, neutral and dynamic, lively sound of the D8000 Pro, the EarMen CH-Amp compliments that beautifully.

EarMen CH-Amp with Rosson RAD-0


This is really interesting. The RAD-0 is the complete opposite of what the D8000 Pro is. It’s musical, engaging, and never lacks body or emotions. However, this pair is not your usual “musical” sounding headphones, as the number of dynamics, richness, and punchiness are all playing a major role in the RAD-0.
The CH-Amp gives you all the essential qualities to make the RAD-0 absolutely sing, but at the same time, it keeps up with it perfectly. The technical capabilities of this amplifier match the resolving and insightful character of the RAD-0, but it never makes it bland sounding. This gives a highly textured, colorful, and thick, yet smooth and crispy type of sound that goes exceptional with every music genre and mastering quality.

EarMen CH-Amp with Fir Audio KR5​


My favorite IEM of all time, the Fir Audio Krypton 5 is just ridiculously good and fun to listen to. As I said previously in this review, the CH-Amp is a great amplifier to run your IEMs with. It’s clean, powerful, fast, and snappy.
With the KR5, this amplifier sounds very dynamic, insanely open, and rich, but never too harsh. Yes, the amount of information is absurd, but not tiring or simply “too much” sounding. There’s absolutely no problem with hiss or background noise, but keep in mind that I’m using low-gain with IEMs.
The Krypton 5 has revolutionary kinetic bass technology, which gives you the physicality and rumble of low frequencies like never seen before. Therefore, having that extra power that is so clean with the CH-Amp further improves the overall feeling of it. This is a bassheads dream come true.


Feliks Envy​


We’re starting the comparisons with something as big as it gets. The Feliks Envy is a 300B tube amplifier that starts at 7000 EURO. The price, size, and weight differences here are absolutely huge, but I was still curious how does the CH-Amp compete with such a behemoth.
Truth is – It doesn’t, but who’d be surprised here? The Envy is much more powerful, mature sounding and it’s just a piece of art when it comes to headphone amplifiers.
However, the EarMen CH-Amp still sounds very impressive, especially when we’ll consider the price difference. The clean, dynamic, and airy character of this amplifier goes well against the almighty Envy. It’s great to see this amplifier performing so well even when compared to the absolute Summit-Fi. While it didn’t stand a chance from the beginning, it still performed better than I anticipated, and that’s very imposing.

XIAudio Broadway S​


These two have some things in common, but they do differ in certain categories. First of all, the CH-Amp is fully balanced, but the Broadway S is battery-operated, so yeah, you know…choose your fighter.
When it comes to the sound, however, the differences start to fade away and these two start trading blows. The Broadway S has a more romantic, rich flavor to it, while the hero of this review, the EarMen CH-Amp sounds more powerful and dynamic. These differences aren’t huge though, but significant enough for you to make up your mind.
If you don’t really care about the battery-operated function, the CH-Amp might be a more universal, more powerful, and more universal-sounding choice. Also, it is balanced, so if you have a balanced DAC…then the choice is rather simple.
If you DO care about your amp being battery-operated, and you don’t need a lot of power, the Broadway S offers a unique blend of functionality and sound quality, especially on the go. It also goes well with more reference-tuned headphones that lack excitement.

EarMen Angel​


This comparison is interesting, and pretty simple at the same time. Everything that Angel does, the EarMen CH-Amp does it better and stronger. The tuning is pretty similar, but the CH-Amp just sounds better than the Angel.
Yes, you’re missing the entire portable functionality of the Angel, so choosing between the two should come down to your preferences when it comes to function. If you’re only running headphones in your home, and the price difference doesn’t scare you away, the CH-Amp is definitely a better choice.
However, you won’t be able to listen to the EarMen CH-Amp everywhere, and here’s when the Angel wins.
It’s as basic as it gets – The Angel is not as good sounding, but it’s cheaper and portable. The CH-Amp is a stationary amplifier, and it sounds significantly better than the Angel. Both have similar timbre though.

EarMen CH-Amp review — summary​


EarMen did it again. Even though this is the most expensive piece of gear they ever made (not including Auris), they took a similar approach as usual – Great build quality, neutral-natural sound signature, great technical capabilities, and the ability to go well with most gear on the market.
Because of that, the EarMen CH-Amp is one of the best amplifiers in this price range currently. It is an element of a Streamer/Dac/Amp stack, and it does sound wonderful when used as that. However, as a solo amplifier, this is still a phenomenal product that will surely sell a lot, and it’s really hard to criticize anything about it.

Highly recommended.

Big thanks to EarMen for providing the CH-Amp for this review. I wasn’t paid or asked to say anything good or bad about this product, all of the above is just my personal, unbiased opinion.
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Reactions: daijobudes
Great review! Heard it at Canjam NYC 2022, very good stack!
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Reactions: rev92
@daijobudes Thanks bro! A very good stack and amplifier indeed! :wink:


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