Audio-Technica is now shipping its AT-BHA100 balanced headphone amplifier and AT-DAC100 digital-to-analog converter. Audio-Technica’s AT-BHA100 headphone amplifier ($999) builds upon the AT-HA5050H and AT-HA22TUBE models and offers improved sound. The AT-BHA100 employs four JJ Electronic ECC83S vacuum tubes, one for each audio circuit and four power transistors. The left and right channels and the balanced amplifier circuits are separated from each other well.
The AT-BHA100 offers two balanced outputs, a 4.4-millimeter (0.17-inch) TRRS jack and a four-pin XLR terminal for compatibility with a wide range of balanced headphones, along with two 1/4-inch (6.3-millimeter) jacks. Two headphones can be used at the same time, and volume control is independent of each (in unbalanced mode). The AT-BHA100 also features a line-through output.
The left and right channels are independent of each other to suppress crosstalk. The AT-BHA100 utilizes a New Japan Radio (NJR) MUSES8820 operational amp, WIMA and Shinyei film capacitors and a four-layer circuit board construction that separates the signal, power and ground circuits for audio purity. The AT-BHA100 comes with an external power supply and can be placed vertically using the supplied brackets.
The Audio-Technica AT-DAC100 digital-to-analog converter ($699) is compatible with DSD and supports up to 768 kHz 32-bit linear PCM and 22.4 MHz DSD. It incorporates sophisticated design techniques, including an AKM AK4452 VN DAC for extremely low distortion and noise, an Analog Devices power supply, a filter circuit that utilizes a Texas Instruments LME49860 operational amp and Nichicon and WIMA capacitors. The AT-DAC100 offers two USB inputs (USB-C and USB-B), plus optical and coaxial digital inputs.