Headphone Amplifiers Germantown MD

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Best Buy
(240) 686-1221
20914 Frederick Rd.
Germantown, MD
 
Best Buy
15750 Shady Grove Rd
Gaithersburg, MD
 
Best Buy
45575 Dulles Eastern Plz
Sterling, VA
 
All Around Technology
(301) 770-1700
4937 Wyaconda Road
Rockville, MD
Services
Audio / Video, Home Automation / Systems Integration / Home Networking, Home Theater, Lighting Control, Multi-Room Audio
Brands
Sonance, Triad, James Speakers, Revel, Boston Acoustics, Linn, Crestron, AMX, Universal Remotes, Lutron, LiteTouch, CinemaTech, Stewart, Runco, Sony, LG, Pioneer, Samsung, Panasonic, Chief, Omnimount, Middle Atlantic, Denon, Integra, Yamaha
Certifications
One or more employees at this company have achieved CEDIA Professional Certification status:- Alex Beelke, CEDIA Certified Professional EST II- Cameron Bolling, CEDIA Certified Professional EST II- Anthony Elhard, CEDIA Certified Professional EST III (Advanced EST), CEDIA Certified Professional EST II- Peter Elliott, CEDIA Certified Professional EST II- James Finnerty, CEDIA Certified Professional EST II- Timothy Hatfield, CEDIA Certified Professional EST II- James McWilliams, CEDIA Certified Pr

Bose Showcase Store
(301) 767-3988
Montgomery Mall,7101 Democracy Boulevard
Bethesda, MD
 
Innovative Multimedia
(301) 208-0054
7960 Cessna Avenue
Gaithersburg, MD
 
MediaCraft LLC
(202) 596-1195
11609 Swains Lock Terrace
Potomac, MD
Services
Audio / Video, Home Automation / Systems Integration / Home Networking, Home Theater, Lighting Control, Motorized Window Treatments / Home Theater Curtains, Multi-Room Audio, Multi-Room Video, iPhone / iPad integration
Brands
Definitive Technology, Bose, Yamaha APC, Lutron, JVC Pro, Mitsubishi, Optoma, Monitor Audio, Leon Speakers, Episode, Vutec, DragonFly Filmscreens, Universal Remote Control, ARCAM, Totem Acoustic, Panamax
Certifications
One or more employees at this company have achieved CEDIA Professional Certification status:- John Capoccia, CEDIA Certified Professional EST II

Best Buy
1200 Rockville Pike
Rockville, MD
 
Hook It Up
(703) 444-4665
201 Davis Drive
Sterling, VA
 
Best Buy
10901 Georgia Ave
Silver Spring, MD
 

headroommax

POSITIVE FEEDBACK ONLINE - ISSUE 5

headroom

the Max and Little headphone amplifiers

as reviewed by Carlo Flores

max.jpg (20532 bytes)

   

The Max

Many audiophiles view headphone listening as playing with toys or trying to get the most from portable fidelity. Others believe that a well-designed transducer powered by quality amplification can yield good results regardless of the type of system. Headphones offer a choice to those who are limited in space. If you can live with a soundstage that exists within two inches of your skull, you can, with proper care, assemble a system that rivals similarly priced speakers. There are headphones and amps to power them in just about every price bracket. In the case of Headroom, a complete line of headphone products is available from one manufacturer, including the Blockhead, a fully balanced amp that can only be used with a specially terminated Grado RS-1 or Sennheiser. For those (like me) who like other headphones, the Max is Headroom's best offering, so I view it as their statement product, and the one I decided to review.

The Max has some nice features that allow for great flexibility. It can be used as a two-input active preamp, a one-box solution for those looking to incorporate a headphone amp with a speaker system. One of its inputs can be changed to a loop out, so the user can use the amp between a preamp/integrated's tape output and a recording device, with minimal influence on the sound. The Max's class AB circuitry is encased in a long rectangular chassis that is about half the width of most stereo components, with the simple, nondescript faceplate allowing for easy integration into a living environment. The Max's front panel is covered with user controls: toggle switches control gain (a welcome addition for better control of the stepped attenuator), Headroom's patented Crossfeed Circuit, and their filter settings. Two headphone jacks that lock in theory, but not in reality, allow for shared listening, and a toggle switch allows the user to float ground. Missing from the front panel is source selection; instead, it's on the rear plate, which will make the Max unpractical for many people. On the back, the IEC receptacle, fuse, and power switch are a one-piece unit, which means that that the large IECs on some power cords may get in the way when trying to turn the unit on or off. The Max is surprisingly lightweight—I had to place books on its top lid to use aftermarket power cords.

After the obligatory interconnect and power cord changes, I settled on the Tara Labs Air 3 for its soundstage and the Tek-Line PC12W for its top end linearity. I set the Max's crossfeed circuit and filters to their off positions (more on what they do later), and hardly fiddled with the amp again. I had the opportunity to borrow Grado HP-1s, Audio Technica w2002s, and Sennheiser HD600s during my time with the Max, along with the Grado SR225s and Sennheiser HD580s (with Cardas upgrade...

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