Sennheiser Announces New Headphone Amplifiers
Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia (14 February 2014) – Audio specialist Sennheiser announced that its HDVD 800 and HDVA 600 headphone amplifier is now available for sale in Malaysia. The HDVD 800 was recognized with Outstanding Technical Achievement awards by the TEC (Technical Excellence & Creativity) Foundation. Sennheiser USA President Greg Beebe accepted the award during a reception held at the 2014 NAMM show in Anaheim on 24 January. The HDVD 800 headphone amp/DAC allows for optimal performance when paired with any Sennheiser audiophile headphones.
Since the TEC Foundation was established in 1990, Sennheiser and its subsidiary Georg Neumann, Berlin have been presented with a cumulative total of 20 Outstanding Technical Achievement awards as well as having five products represented in the TECnology Hall of Fame, including the venerable MD 421 microphone.
“On behalf of the entire Sennheiser team, I want to express my gratitude to the TEC Foundation for recognizing the HDVD 800 with Outstanding Achievement award,” said Greg Beebe. “At Sennheiser, we are committed to the Pursuit of Perfect Sound – and this commitment is reflected in products that dramatically improve our customers’ ability to deliver audio quality that is second to none.”
The outstanding features of the new headphone amplifiers include a balanced sound image, maximum precision and impressive spatiality. The high-end devices have a fully symmetrical layout for operation with analogue audio sources, thus ensuring absolutely symmetrical signal transmission from the source to the headphones. Especially designed for the use with digital sources, the HDVD 800 features an extra high-quality Burr-Brown digital/analogue converter that converts digital audio data into analogue signals with a resolution of 24 bits and a sampling rate of up to 192 kHz. This enables the HDVD 800 to transmit the entire frequency spectrum of high-end audio sources without any loss of frequencies.
Cutting-edge technology, top-quality sound
Signal processing in the HiFi devices is fully symmetrical. That means that not only the signal input into the amplifier is symmetrical but also the signal output and therefore the connection to the headphones. “The fully symmetrical principle effectively compensates for interference and distortion. The sound therefore becomes much clearer as total harmonic distortion is minimised,” explained Axel Grell, Sennheiser’s High-End Product Manager at Sennheiser.
However, the headphones can also be connected using a normal 6.3 mm jack plug. The amplifiers are also equipped with an asymmetrical input socket; when using this input, the incoming signals are symmetrised before further processing takes place. On the HDVD 800 digital sources are connected to the rear of the unit as an AES/EBU input or S/PDIF (optical and coaxial). The digital version is featured with an extra USB input, which offers 24 bit data transmission at 192 KHz*.
In order to fully exploit the sound potential of the HDVD 800 with any audio source, a rotary gain switch at the rear of the unit provides simple adaptation of the amplifier output to the audio input voltage. This ensures that the dynamic range can be used to its full extent.
Sophisticated materials for a premium touch
A glass panel embedded in the aluminium housing of the amplifier gives a clear view of the top-quality interior of the devices. Selected components and sophisticated circuitry promise the ultimate in listening pleasure. The rotary potentiometer is mechanically connected to the volume control by a 150mm long shaft. This unusually long potentiometer shaft allows the signal path between the audio source and the potentiometer to be kept very short, thus preventing possible interference of the signal. High-quality components (Alps RK 27 quad) ensure that the volume is controlled with maximum precision and a fine rotary ‘feel’. Also visible through the glass panel are the cooling element, the audio relay and countless MELF resistors for the amplifier. “The material selection has been thought through down to the finest detail in order to fully exploit the amplifier’s sound potential. The audio aspects of each individual component were evaluated in listening tests before the optimum combination was finally chosen,” said Maurice Quarré.
And such meticulous attention has also been applied to the exterior. Both the housing and the potentiometer control as well as the rotary switch for selecting the source are made of anodised aluminium, while the front panel of the housing and the controls are milled from solid material. The HDVD 800 and the HDVA 600 were developed and designed in Germany, and the latest member of Sennheiser’s high-end series are also being manufactured there.
The Sennheiser HDVD 800 and HDVA 600 is available at the Sennheiser Concept Store, in Bangsar Shopping Centre. Retail prices for the HDVD 800 is RM 7,590 and the HDVA 600 is RM 6,090