Drop + THX AAA One Headphone Amplifier

uzzy

Grumpy Old Git
Wammer
Apr 16, 2006
8,563
4,632
158
NN38TA Northampton
AKA
David
HiFi Trade?
  1. No
Decided that it was time to get a headphone amp .. currently I use the Headphone socket on the cd players and if I wanted to listen to a different source I would set the HB Burnit Pro to record and could then listen to any source on the headphone outlet.

Anyway having read gazillions of reviews and left shell shocked from the variations in revies on items for some reason I liked the look of the Drop + THX AAA One Headphone Amplifier and decided what the hell - prices vary massively and so I made an offer for one for sale on eBay (my offer £90) and it was duly accepted. It arrived yesterday and so I duly hooked it up to the tape 2 output socket and sat back to have a listen, expecting not a lot different to the direct inject to the cd player.

Well it took me a bit by surprise. My phones are 600 ohm Beyer DT990 (not the Pro) and my worry of it not having enough power were found to be unfounded (it goes more than loud enogh on the high gain setting.

The surpise was the additional detail and bass definition and a more expansive image (as though the sound was now beyond being inside my head .. I never expected increased width from a pair of headphones in a dedicated headphone amp.

Are there better Headphone Amps out there? Well we all know the answer to that, of course there are, but for £90 I am more than happy with the end result. I am not good at the imagery used by descriptive writers but for me it has the ability to be able to follow different parts of a harmony easily, clearly identifying voice types. There was no grittiness or excess sibilance just clearer. There is a review here for anyone interested which seems a fair assessment to me https://www.headphones.com/communit...view-new-reference-headphone-amplifier-at-200

One to add to your list perhaps if you are looking for a cheap great performing headphone amp IMO

In time I am going to set it up between the pre and power amp connection as the preamp button on the right switched the headphones off on passing through the signal and should i get harder to drive headphones will allow for the signal input to be adjustable by the preamp volume control

1660318827954.png
 
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DomT

Food and coffee and rock n roll
Wammer Plus
Jul 23, 2019
10,315
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Village near Nottingham.
AKA
Dom
HiFi Trade?
  1. No
Decided that it was time to get a headphone amp .. currently I use the Headphone socket on the cd players and if I wanted to listen to a different source I would set the HB Burnit Pro to record and could then listen to any source on the headphone outlet.

Anyway having read gazillions of reviews and left shell shocked from the variations in revies on items for some reason I liked the look of the Drop + THX AAA One Headphone Amplifier and decided what the hell - prices vary massively and so I made an offer for one for sale on eBay (my offer £90) and it was duly accepted. It arrived yesterday and so I duly hooked it up to the tape 2 output socket and sat back to have a listen, expecting not a lot different to the direct inject to the cd player.

Well it took me a bit by surprise. My phones are 600 ohm Beyer DT990 (not the Pro) and my worry of it not having enough power were found to be unfounded (it goes more than loud enogh on the high gain setting.

The surpise was the additional detail and bass definition and a more expansive image (as though the sound was now beyond being inside my head .. I never expected increased width from a pair of headphones in a dedicated headphone amp.

Are there better Headphone Amps out there? Well we all know the answer to that, of course there are, but for £90 I am more than happy with the end result. I am not good at the imagery used by descriptive writers but for me it has the ability to be able to follow different parts of a harmony easily, clearly identifying voice types. There was no grittiness or excess sibilance just clearer. There is a review here for anyone interested which seems a fair assessment to me https://www.headphones.com/communit...view-new-reference-headphone-amplifier-at-200

One to add to your list perhaps if you are looking for a cheap great performing headphone amp IMO

In time I am going to set it up between the pre and power amp connection as the preamp button on the right switched the headphones off on passing through the signal and should i get harder to drive headphones will allow for the signal input to be adjustable by the preamp volume control

1660318827954.png
Funnily enough I read a review of that this morning after reading about the Benchmark HPA4 which also has a THX section. Looks interesting.
 
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Lawrence001

Mega Wammer
Wammer
Jul 21, 2015
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3,533
168
London
AKA
Lawrence
HiFi Trade?
  1. No
Funnily enough I read a review of that this morning after reading about the Benchmark HPA4 which also has a THX section. Looks interesting.
I've got 2 SMSL amps that basically have the same THX chipsets as the Benchmark (though the latter is true balanced) for a fraction of the price and they've made me rethink my view of solid state amps needing big power supplies (and, more fundamentally, what they can achieve for a very reasonable outlay).
 
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jumpmonkey

Wammer
Wammer
Jun 15, 2008
465
136
73
Hull, , United Kingd
AKA
Craig
HiFi Trade?
  1. No
Decided that it was time to get a headphone amp .. currently I use the Headphone socket on the cd players and if I wanted to listen to a different source I would set the HB Burnit Pro to record and could then listen to any source on the headphone outlet.

Anyway having read gazillions of reviews and left shell shocked from the variations in revies on items for some reason I liked the look of the Drop + THX AAA One Headphone Amplifier and decided what the hell - prices vary massively and so I made an offer for one for sale on eBay (my offer £90) and it was duly accepted. It arrived yesterday and so I duly hooked it up to the tape 2 output socket and sat back to have a listen, expecting not a lot different to the direct inject to the cd player.

Well it took me a bit by surprise. My phones are 600 ohm Beyer DT990 (not the Pro) and my worry of it not having enough power were found to be unfounded (it goes more than loud enogh on the high gain setting.

The surpise was the additional detail and bass definition and a more expansive image (as though the sound was now beyond being inside my head .. I never expected increased width from a pair of headphones in a dedicated headphone amp.

Are there better Headphone Amps out there? Well we all know the answer to that, of course there are, but for £90 I am more than happy with the end result. I am not good at the imagery used by descriptive writers but for me it has the ability to be able to follow different parts of a harmony easily, clearly identifying voice types. There was no grittiness or excess sibilance just clearer. There is a review here for anyone interested which seems a fair assessment to me https://www.headphones.com/communit...view-new-reference-headphone-amplifier-at-200

One to add to your list perhaps if you are looking for a cheap great performing headphone amp IMO

In time I am going to set it up between the pre and power amp connection as the preamp button on the right switched the headphones off on passing through the signal and should i get harder to drive headphones will allow for the signal input to be adjustable by the preamp volume control

1660318827954.png
Until about a year ago I’d never heard of Drop. I’m still not entirely sure I understand what it is or how it works, but on the back of good reviews I bought some of the Drop x Sennheiser PC38x headphones for gaming and bugger me, they’re bloody marvellous for music. Did you manage to buy the amp in the UK, or did you have to import it? Am I right in thinking they ask members what they want and then get a bulk custom order made? Or is this a different Drop?
 
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Lawrence001

Mega Wammer
Wammer
Jul 21, 2015
5,949
3,533
168
London
AKA
Lawrence
HiFi Trade?
  1. No
Until about a year ago I’d never heard of Drop. I’m still not entirely sure I understand what it is or how it works, but on the back of good reviews I bought some of the Drop x Sennheiser PC38x headphones for gaming and bugger me, they’re bloody marvellous for music. Did you manage to buy the amp in the UK, or did you have to import it? Am I right in thinking they ask members what they want and then get a bulk custom order made? Or is this a different Drop?
Same drop, they started with limited runs almost like a crowdfunding model (in fact it may have been) but now have some items available to order as and when. They also work with known brands and tweak their products according to feedback on forums etc, or reintroduce past models (eg. HD58x or whatever it's called) so have a very interesting business model.
 
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Ceko

Wammer
Wammer
Jul 21, 2020
504
403
68
Zuid Holland, NL
HiFi Trade?
  1. No
So you have bought a headphone amp you’re pleasantly surprised about and first thing you ask is “is there anything better?” :)

Anyway, I have a comparable device from Monoprice. It’s very good!
 
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uzzy

Grumpy Old Git
Wammer
Apr 16, 2006
8,563
4,632
158
NN38TA Northampton
AKA
David
HiFi Trade?
  1. No
Until about a year ago I’d never heard of Drop. I’m still not entirely sure I understand what it is or how it works, but on the back of good reviews I bought some of the Drop x Sennheiser PC38x headphones for gaming and bugger me, they’re bloody marvellous for music. Did you manage to buy the amp in the UK, or did you have to import it? Am I right in thinking they ask members what they want and then get a bulk custom order made? Or is this a different Drop?
Got mine on eBay (UK). Guy was a great seller, although at first I was worried as he sent me the wrong item (mixed up the mail and sent my order to someone else and his order to me). Return quickly sorted and he refunded (he paid the return postage) and when the item made its way back to him we got the deal done.

I have no idea if it was new or second hand (I think the guy imports lots of stuff including SMSL stuff) and it cost me £90 (I made an offer as at the price he was advertising I would not have bought).
So you have bought a headphone amp you’re pleasantly surprised about and first thing you ask is “is there anything better?” :)

Anyway, I have a comparable device from Monoprice. It’s very good!
You do not I guess understand what I said which was " Are there better Headphone Amps out there? Well we all know the answer to that, of course there are, but for £90 I am more than happy with the end result.

There is always something better (depending on the price you are prepared to pay and the lenghths to go to in order to find something better) .. my comment was shown to indicate for the money paid, my ears are more than happy so for me there is no need to seek out anything better.

The Monoprice one using the same THX AAA has balanced and single ended headphone inputs and other than the headphone inputs looks identical (at £368 according to this advert https://www.monoprice.uk/products/m...lifier-featuring-thx-aaa-887-technology-eu-uk ) is this the one you are using? (their cheaper headphone amp also looks good for the money has a built in DAC and USB inut but does not state the amp module used https://www.monoprice.uk/products/monoprice-uk-desktop-headphone-amplifier

Glad to hear you like yours too.
 
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Ceko

Wammer
Wammer
Jul 21, 2020
504
403
68
Zuid Holland, NL
HiFi Trade?
  1. No
Got mine on eBay (UK). Guy was a great seller, although at first I was worried as he sent me the wrong item (mixed up the mail and sent my order to someone else and his order to me). Return quickly sorted and he refunded (he paid the return postage) and when the item made its way back to him we got the deal done.

I have no idea if it was new or second hand (I think the guy imports lots of stuff including SMSL stuff) and it cost me £90 (I made an offer as at the price he was advertising I would not have bought).

You do not I guess understand what I said which was " Are there better Headphone Amps out there? Well we all know the answer to that, of course there are, but for £90 I am more than happy with the end result.

There is always something better (depending on the price you are prepared to pay and the lenghths to go to in order to find something better) .. my comment was shown to indicate for the money paid, my ears are more than happy so for me there is no need to seek out anything better.

The Monoprice one using the same THX AAA has balanced and single ended headphone inputs and other than the headphone inputs looks identical (at £368 according to this advert https://www.monoprice.uk/products/m...lifier-featuring-thx-aaa-887-technology-eu-uk ) is this the one you are using? (their cheaper headphone amp also looks good for the money has a built in DAC and USB inut but does not state the amp module used https://www.monoprice.uk/products/monoprice-uk-desktop-headphone-amplifier

Glad to hear you like yours too.
Yes that’s the one. I love it to bits and actually I think there is no better headphone amp out there no matter the money.
 

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