Benchmark HPA4 Reference Headphone/Line Amplifier (Silver)

Benchmark HPA4 Reference Headphone/Line Amplifier (Silver)

Benchmark HPA4 Reference Headphone/Line Amplifier (Silver)

B&H # BEHPA4HLASLV MFR # 500-17200-100
Back-Ordered
Expected availability: End of Nov 2018

Product Highlights

  • THX-888 Headphone Amplifier
  • High Voltage, Current, and Power
  • Low Distortion, Noise, and Crosstalk
  • 256-Step Balanced Relay Gain Control
  • Balanced and Unbalanced Line I/O
  • DC, Thermal & Short-Circuit Protection
  • Touchscreen Control
  • XLR 4-Pin Balanced Headphone Output
  • 1/4" TRS Unbalanced Headphone Output
  • Designed, Assembled & Tested in the USA
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Color: Silver

Benchmark HPA4 Reference Headphone/Line Amplifier (Black) zwsttcfsutucfaeaaabaetd

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Benchmark HPA4 Reference Headphone/Line Amplifier (Silver)

Configuration: No Remote Control

No Remote Control With Remote Control

Back-Ordered

This item is noncancelable and nonreturnable.

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You Pay: $2,995.00

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Benchmark HPA4 overview

  • 1Description

The silver Benchmark HPA4 is a reference headphone/line amplifier designed to deliver pristine amplification of analog sources for audiophiles, mixing and mastering engineers, and music aficionados in homes, recording studios, and mastering suites. Resulting from Benchmark's collaboration with THX, the HPA4 features a THX-888 headphone amplifier for an output signal with high voltage, current, and power complemented by low distortion, noise, and crosstalk. Designed, assembled, and tested in the USA, it boasts a sturdy brushed aluminum housing with a milled faceplate and milled sides.

The rear-panel I/O includes two balanced stereo XLR inputs, two unbalanced stereo RCA inputs, XLR and RCA stereo outputs, and a mono XLR output. The front-panel offers two headphone outputs, one unbalanced 1/4" TRS jack and one balanced XLR 4-pin jack. Volume adjustments are executed via the 256-step balanced relay gain control, which uses increments of 0.5 dB. The integrated touchscreen and remote control (sold separately) allow convenient access to common functions such as input selection, dim, mute, and more. Built-in protection systems guard against potential damage from DC, short-circuit, over-current, over-voltage, and thermal issues.

THX AAA Technology
The collaboration between Benchmark and THX features THX Achromatic Audio Amplifier (AAA) technology, which reduces harmonic, intermodulation, and crossover distortion by 20 to 40 dB to guarantee a realistic and fatigue-free listening experience. It accomplishes this using a patented feed-forward topology to null conventional distortion and noise mechanisms, resulting in extreme linearity. THX AAA allows the amplifier to reach its maximum output power and sound pressure level without producing the distortion that normally accompanies increased output levels in traditional amplifiers.
Line Amplification
The THX-888 amplifier is driven by a Benchmark line amplifier that features relay gain control, relay input selection, and relay muting. The line amplifier incorporates premium gold-contact relays. The gain control has 256 steps in 0.5 dB increments. It also features a balance control. Relay closures are precisely timed to deliver smooth volume changes. The HPA4 includes four independent 256-step attenuators: two for the headphone outputs and two for the line outputs. To make this all happen, the HPA4 includes a total of 64 precision relays.
100% Analog Signal Path
The HPA4 is 100% analog and should be driven from an external D/A converter or analog source. It eclipses the performance of typical high-end preamplifiers by achieving much lower noise and distortion.
High Voltage, High Current, and High Power
The THX-888 amplifier can cleanly deliver high voltage into low-sensitivity, high-impedance headphones and it can cleanly deliver high power and current into low-impedance headphones. The HPA4 delivers 11.9 Vrms into 300 Ohms and 6W into 16 Ohms. Given these extreme capabilities, Benchmark has incorporated several protection systems to protect expensive headphones and the amplifier itself. These include DC, short-circuit, over-current, over-voltage, and thermal protection.
Speed and Precision
The bandwidth of the HPA4 extends from 0.01 Hz to over 500 kHz with a drop of only 3 dB. The 10 Hz to 20 kHz spectrum boasts a maximum variance of only -0.003 dB. This means that the HPA4 delivers very precise amplitude and phase accuracy over the entire audio bandwidth. Wave shapes are accurately reproduced, and the entire spectrum is delivered with precise timing.
Balanced and Unbalanced I/O
The headphone output of the THX-888 amplifier features a 1/4" TRS and an XLR 4-pin. While both outputs deliver the full performance of the HPA4, the XLR4 is most ideal due to its lower contact resistance. The HPA4 features two balanced stereo inputs via XLR 3-pin jacks and two unbalanced stereo inputs via RCA jacks. The line amplifier provides one balanced stereo output, one balanced mono sum, and one unbalanced stereo output.
Touchscreen
The touchscreen provides easy access to advanced features such as balance control, input level offsets, input names, screen dimming, remote control, and function locking. Help screens explain the special functions.
Rotary Encoder
The volume control knob features a high-quality optical encoder that is rated for heavy use. An acceleration feature makes it easy to move through the 256 volume steps while maintaining 0.5 dB/step resolution. A press of the control knob toggles between headphone volume, line out volume, or both.
Trigger Ports
Two bidirectional 12V trigger ports can be used to link the HPA4 with external D/A converters and power amplifiers. The trigger signal controls the power-up and power-down sequencing of the entire audio system. The trigger ports are compatible with most industry-standard trigger input or output ports, but can communicate bidirectionally with other Benchmark products.
Convenience Features
The HPA4 includes independent on-screen mute buttons for the headphone and line outputs. Both can also be muted with the volume knob or with the remote control (sold separately). An on-screen -20 dB dim button instantly reduces the level by 20 dB, providing a temporary volume reduction and an easy return to the previous listening level. This control makes it easy to transition between a normal listening level and a background level. The dim function is also accessible from the remote control.

Inputs may be renamed and unused inputs may be disabled. Input levels can be trimmed to provide input-to-input level matching. Screen brightness is adjustable and timers can be set to dim or shut off the display. The screen can be locked to prevent access to advanced features.

Sleek and Sturdy Construction
The case features a milled faceplate and milled sides. Top, bottom, and rear panels are made from thick aluminum and feature a brushed texture. The HPA4 was designed, assembled, and tested in the USA.
In the Box
Benchmark HPA4 Reference Headphone/Line Amplifier (Silver)
  • Power Cable
  • Trigger Cable
  • Spare Fuses
  • Limited 1-Year Warranty
  • Table of Contents
    • 1Description

    Benchmark HPA4 specs

    Number of Channels 2
    Input Connections 2 x XLR 3-pin balanced stereo pairs
    2 x RCA coaxial unbalanced stereo pairs
    Output Connectors 1 x XLR 3-pin balanced stereo pair
    1 x XLR 3-pin balanced mono
    1 x RCA coaxial unbalanced stereo pair
    1 x XLR 4-pin balanced headphone jack
    1 x 1/4" TRS unbalanced headphone jack
    Trigger Connectivity 2 x 12 V bidirectional trigger ports
    Maximum Input Level 20 Vrms / +28 dBu
    Maximum Output Level Line Outputs: 20 Vrms / +28 dBu
    Headphone Output: 11.5 Vrms into 300 Ohms
    Maximum Output Power Headphone Output: 6 W into 16 Ohms
    Output Impedance Line Outputs: 60 Ohms
    Headphone Output: Near 0 Ohms
    Function Controls Volume
    Power
    Frequency Response Exceeds 0.1 Hz to 500 kHz (-3 dB)
    10 Hz (-0.003 dB) to 20 kHz (-0.001 dB)
    THD + N < -125 dB (0.00006%)
    Output Noise Line Outputs: <1.9 ÁV at unity gain, 20 Hz to 20 kHz
    Headphone Output: <2.45 ÁV at unity gain, 20 Hz to 20 kHz
    Signal to Noise Ratio Line Outputs: >135 dB (unweighted, 20 Hz to 20 kHz), >137 dB (A-weighted)
    Headphone Output: >131 dB (unweighted, 20 Hz to 20 kHz), >135 dB (A-weighted)
    Crosstalk Line Outputs: < -133 dB at 1 kHz, -116 dB at 10 kHz
    Headphone Output: < -133 dB at 1 kHz, -115 dB at 10 kHz via XLR 4-pin
    Display Touchscreen
    Power Requirement 100 to 240 VAC, 50/60 Hz
    Input Power 18 W typical
    35 W maximum
    0.33 W in standby mode
    Enclosure Material Aluminum
    Dimensions (W x H x D) 8.7 x 3.9 x 8.3" / 219.7 x 98.6 x 211.6 mm (including feet)
    8.7 x 3.5 x 8.3" / 219.7 x 88.1 x 211.6 mm (excluding feet)
    Weight 8 lb / 3.6 kg
    Country of Manufacture Designed, assembled, and tested in the United States of America

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