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Musical Fidelity M1HPA

Headphone amplifier with USB input

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  • Musical Fidelity M1HPA

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  • Musical Fidelity M1HPA

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  • Musical Fidelity M1HPA

  • Musical Fidelity M1HPA

  • Musical Fidelity M1HPA

  • Musical Fidelity M1HPA

  • Musical Fidelity M1HPA

  • Musical Fidelity M1HPA

Item #: 778M1HPAB
 

Review Summary

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Our take on the Musical Fidelity M1HPA

by Dave Bar

Why buy a headphone amp?

High-performance headphones need high-quality amplification to perform up to their full potential. If you connect them directly to the headphone jack on your computer, iPod®, or stereo receiver, you may be disappointed. A separate headphone amplifier sends a stronger, cleaner signal to your headphones.

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When it comes to high-end headphone sound, most receivers can't do jack!

If you love your headphones, don't feed them junk. Instead, use Musical Fidelity's M1HPA headphone amplifier to serve up wholesome, high-end sound that will bring them roaring to life. The M1HPA delivers tunes through your headphones with remarkable warmth, clarity and detail. This beefy little amp can drive even the best cans with unquestioning authority, for a listening experience that goes far beyond what your receiver or CD player's headphone jack can provide. The M1HPA also features a USB input for stellar sound from your computer. It makes a great choice, whether you want to enjoy high-end sound at work or just kick back and do some serious listening at home.


Super-clean Class A amplification

The M1HPA powers up your music using pure Class A amplification — an amp design long valued by audiophiles for its tonal purity and open sound. A hefty, built-in power supply ensures rock-steady performance and powerful dynamics that don't bog down when the going gets tough. The M1HPA's remarkably low output impedance of less than one ohm also means it's capable of driving virtually any headphone with complete linearity and low distortion. All of this goodness is wrapped up in a beautifully built half-width component you'll be proud to display on your shelf.

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Versatile connections for your system

In addition to its outstanding performance with headphones, the M1HPA can also double as a preamp to create a simple, high-quality sound system. Just hook up your PC and a second audio component to its USB and line-level inputs, then connect the Musical Fidelity's preamp outputs to the amp and speakers of your choice. A front-panel switch lets you chose between sources, while the volume control adjusts signal output to your preferred listening levels — perfect for those times when you need a break from you 'phones.


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Highlights:

  • low-distortion, pure Class A headphone amplifier
  • THD: 0.008% (10-20,000Hz)
  • frequency response: 15Hz to 75,000Hz (-3dB)
  • signal-to-noise ratio: greater than 109dB (A weighted)
  • output impedance: less than 1 Ohm
  • output power: 1.1 watt at 32 Ohms
  • USB Type B input with built-in Mac and PC compatible drivers for computer audio
  • 1 pair line-level RCA inputs and outputs
  • 1 pair RCA preamp outputs
  • two full-size stereo headphone outputs
  • detachable AC power cord
  • 8-11/16"W x 3-15/16"H x 14-1/8"D
  • weight: 7.5 lbs.
  • warranty: 1 year
  • Our 60-day money-back guarantee

Hands-on research from the Crutchfield Labs (what are the Labs?)

Product Research
What's in the box?

Download owner's manual

  • Headphone amplifier
  • 7' AC power cord
  • Instructions
  • "Thank You" letter

Our Product Research Team

At Crutchfield, you'll get detailed, accurate information that's hard to find elsewhere. That's because we have our own in-house Product Research team — they open the box, verify contents, check the owner's manual, and record dimensions, features and specs. We stay on top of new products and technologies to help people make informed choices.

Features
Specifications

Features

Overview: The Musical Fidelity M1HPA Class A headphone amplifier provides a rich, full, smooth sound with greater bottom end extension. The M1HPA consists of a pure Class A circuit giving exceptional performance into virtually any impedance headphone. It features a line-level input as well as a USB input, and a line-level output. It also features two headphone outputs and a set of volume-controlled outputs to enable use as a preamplifier. In addition, the headphone amplifier is equipped with a robust power supply circuit for consistent performance and reliability. Overall all, the Musical Fidelity headphone amplifier offers astounding imaging, detail, and transparency to all types of music exactly as the artist originally intended.

Class A Headphone Amp: The Musical Fidelity M1HPA utilizes a pure Class A headphone amplifier for incredibly low distortion (less than .0008%), an extremely high signal-to-noise ratio (109db), and a ruler-flat frequency response (15-75,000Hz).

Low Output Impedance: The Musical Fidelity M1HPA has a very low output impedance (below 1-ohm). A headphone amplifier's output impedance is usually ignored, but a very important measurement. The M1HPA's extraordinary low output impedance means that it can drive any headphone with complete linearity and low distortion. The vast majority of competitive headphone amplifiers cannot do this because they have much higher output impedance.

Note: Most high-quality headphones have impedance of around 30 Ohms. Almost all headphone amps have an output impedance between 50 and 100 Ohms. Because of their high output impedance they cannot drive headphones properly. Any sound they produce through the headphones is colored, with distortion, and non-linear frequency response.

Volume Control: The Musical Fidelity M1HPA headphone amplifier's front-panel volume control knob lets you adjust your headphone's volume to a comfortable listening level.

Dual Headphone Outputs: The Musical Fidelity M1HPA headphone amplifier is equipped with dual 1/4"  (6.35mm) headphone jacks on its front-panel.

USB Port: The Musical Fidelity M1HPA headphone amplifier features a rear-panel USB (type-B) port for the connection of your Windows PC or Mac computer, so you can listen to your stored compressed music files with high-quality sound from a set of headphones. The M1HPA supports audio files such as CD, MP3, WMA, WAV, AAC, and FLAC.

Note: The M1HPA's USB (type-B) port supports Windows 98, ME, 2000, XP, Vista, and 7; as well as MAC OS X.

Analog Input: The Musical Fidelity M1HPA headphone amplifier is equipped with a rear-panel, gold-plated, stereo RCA input for connecting your external audio source. You can connect your receiver's Tape Output to the M1HPA's stereo RCA input, or connect your CD player or other audio source directly to the headphone amplifier's line-level input.

Analog Output: If you connect the M1HPA to the Tape Output of your receiver and the Tape Output is still required for a tape recorder or CD burner, then the M1HPA's stereo RCA output can replicate the original Tape Output.

Preamp Output: The headphone amplifier's stereo preamp output jacks let you use the M1HPA as a preamplifier and connect it to a separate power amplifier.

Note: When used as a preamplifier, the M1HPA does not mute any connected speakers when headphones are plugged in.

Detachable AC Power cord: The M1HPA is supplied with a detachable 7' IEC power cable.

Specifications

Audio Output:

  • Output Power: 1.1W into 32-Ohms
  • Output Impedance: less than 1-Ohm
  • Output Level: 5.2V RMS (maximum)
  • Frequency Response: 15Hz to 75,000 Hz (-3dB max)
  • Signal-to-Noise Ratio: >109dB ("A"-weighted)
  • Total Harmonic Distortion: <0.008% (@ 10Hz-20kHz)

Power Requirements:

  • Voltage: 90-250VAC, 50/60Hz
  • Consumption: 25 Watts

Dimensions: 8.6875" (w) x 3.9375" (h) x 14.125" (d)

Weight: 9 lbs

 

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Musical Fidelity M1HPA Reviews

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5 out of 5

It's a "JEM" of a Head Phone Amp. Absolutely Superb!

Written By Bob, California on Friday, September 09, 2011
 
Musical Fidelity's M1HPA head phone amplifier is an outstanding product that is sure to please the most demanding audiophile. It has extremely clean, well defined, warm and spacious sound and it superbly matches my Grado PS1000 headphones (32 ohm) and should be able to match just about any headphone on the market. Grado headphones are not that amp dependent at all as most other headphones are so they sound great on just about anything you can plug them into from ipods to receivers but they do sound fabulous using a Musical Fidelity M1HPA headphone amplifier. There is a "clarity of sound" using Musical Fidelity's M1HPA headphone amplifier to where I can hear notes that I never heard before. The music sounds extremely clear and well defined and very depthful and spacious. It's also a very compact, well built unit that does produce superb bass as well. I am very pleased with Musical Fidelity's M1HPA headphone amplifier. It took me about 4 months to write this review but I wanted to make sure that I used reasonable time to evaluate this product and not use it for one night and write a review on it which is not an accurate way of doing an evaluation of any product. If you need a really GREAT headphone amplifier, BUY IT. It's an outstanding product. No noise, no hum, no distortion, just flawless sound with superb balance. Lastly, I want to thank you Derick (A Crutchfield Audio Advisor) for helping me with this "product" choice.
17 out of 17 people found this helpful
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