What if you could take your listening room with you? We've been asking, and answering, this question for a full two decades now. Our latest response: the HeadRoom Portable Micro Headphone Amp. This little gem is a very deliberate blend of audiophile quality parts, a road-worthy extruded aluminum & black urethane enclosure, a serious lithium battery/recharging circuit, plus a well-conceived set of travel accessories, all tightly focused on getting you great access to your tunes whether they live on an iPod, laptop, or any other type of portable audio player.
Your player and the Portable Micro Headphone Amp in its standard configuration creates an outstanding personal audio system that provides hours of high-end portable listening pleasure wherever you may roam. Add the optional internal Digital to Analog Converter (DAC; $200 extra) and the Portable Micro will accept optical and coaxial S/PDIF digital inputs, or direct USB input from any computer. You'll be amazed at how good your laptop, MAC or PC can sound when the audio digital-to-analog conversion process is done properly, and outside the noisy electrical environment ever-present inside the hard-drive.
The front panel of the Portable Micro Amp sports (left to right) line input and headphone output 1/8" (3.5mm) mini-jacks, HeadRoom Crossfeed switch and gain switches, volume control, and power switch. The rear panel has the power input jack, charge state indicator LED, and pre-amp output jack in it's standard configuration; the DAC option adds the 3.5mm mini-optical/coaxial digital input jack and a USB mini-B connector.
How it Works
The Portable Micro Amp/DAC couldn't be easier to use, simply plug in a source and headphones, and turn it on. The battery is a two-cell, 7.4VDC, 2550mAh Lithium-Ion rechargeable which runs for about 12-15 hours, and recharges in about 3 hours. The battery is specified to deliver greater than 70% of its rated capacity for greater than 300 charge cycles, and is fully warranteed for one (1) year. The unit must be returned to HeadRoom for eventual lithium battery replacement. The Portable Micro Amp is meant for mobile listening use so the provided 'power supply' accessory is purely a battery recharging unit, and NOT a true AC-power supply!
The HeadRoom Micro Amp casing is a custom-manufactured heavy aluminum extrusion and all markings are laser-etched into the jet black anodized finish --- in other words, you could run over this baby with a car and it wouldn't even chip the paint [umm, not recommended! -ed.]. The urethane bezel (that rubber thing surrounding the front & rear amp panels) provides significant protection for the entire enclosure and non-skid security while on your desktop. The bezel has a foot sweep that fits into the groove in the top of the bezel, thus allowing all HeadRoom Micro products to stack conveniently and securely.
All HeadRoom Portable Micro Amps are hand-built in Montana, USA.
An external AC charger "wall-wart" [not a true AC power supply!] is included with the Micro Portable Amp/DAC.
*The Portable Micro Amp does NOT include any interconnect cabling. If you are purchasing a Portable Micro Amp with the DAC option and want to use it with your computer, you will need a USB cable. If using the coax/optical input, you will need an Optical Digital Cable along with a Toslink to Mini Adaptor. To hook up your Micro Portable Amp to analog-output sources, you will need a mini-plug 1/8-to-1/8 (3.5mm) interconnect cable. We highly recommend the Cardas 12-inch mini-to-mini interconnect cable ($26). For additional cables and lengths, browse all of our cables.