Headphone Amp

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some kind of OTL dealie using a 6080/6AS7/6H5C/6H13C would probably be good.

if not, maybe ECC88 .. if you can find small enough OPTs.

I think I heard of a design with ECC88,the output tranny was actually an *input* tranny cap-coupled to the plate..

I think you can even make a OTL with ECC88 (6DJ8. or was it 6JD8? too late..) if you use it in SRPP.

theres a lot of options..
(but i dont even listen to headphones, so don't take my word ;) )
A nice pair of headphones could be Grado SR60 or SR80. I own a pair of SR80's and they are the best heaphones I ever heard. Be shure to check out these before you buy.

I've build the Szekeres headphone amp in the DC-coupled version. You can find the schematics for it in the link Jerome gave. It's very simple to build and sound is exelent. Only thing is it needs a large heasink. 1W/K for a stereo version isn't too much.

Also, you ask how expensive it is to build one. That depends. But generaly headphone amps should be a lot cheaper since the power supply, heatsinks and cabinet are much less. I guess the Szekeres could be buildt for less than 50-60$. Well, I payed 150$ for the Grados, so that's nothing, really.
I built the single ended class A headphone amp project that was published in hifi world supplement 9 back in august of 1994.

You can safely ignore all the phase reversal stuff and the extra gain stages using opamps. I found that my Sennheiser
hd475's didn't need anywhere near that level of gain. i have a 10k passive pot on the input.

It runs off +/-12vdc rails but with one channel using +12 to ground and the other using ground to -12.

Only 2 devices per channel BC178 and BD135.

I"ll try to scan the schematic.

d-audi said:
What does it take to build one? ... How expensive are they to make as compared to a Louderspeaker amp.
Look at the Headwize link posted earlier. The "Cmoy" is the cheapest, basically a dual opamp powered by 9V batteries. Maybe 20 bucks to build. The Szekeres is still simple but needs a beefy power supply. The price and complexity go up from there. Read the tutorials at that site, they are excellent.
Popular headphones are the Grado SR-60 and the Sennheiser HD-580. Impedance is a consideration when building an amp, the Grados are low (32 ohms?) and the Senns high (600 ohms?). Check the headwize site again, they have a section for that as well.
Other sites: www.head-fi.org and www.headphone.com
d-audi said:
I'm interested in building a nice stereo headphone amp. Are there any plans/sites that give you plans to good ones? What does it take to build one? I've never really looked into it. How expensive are they to make as compared to a Louderspeaker amp.

I have built this project http://headwize.powerpill.org/projects/showproj.php?file=bender_prj.htm on Headwize. I have to finish the chassis this week so I might be able to post some pics soon. Total cost: 150$ CDN (a small 75$ US) everything included.
diyAudio Senior Member
Joined 2002
Headphone Amp.


Personally I'm more inclined to favour Arren Van Waarde's design.
The 6AS7G family of tubes are far more likely to be able to drive awkward loads adequatley.
One section can dissipate about 13W easily and that could just as well turn out be a usefull attribute might you decide to try it on some speakers as well.
Ri is about 280R per section,it won't probably put out earthquaking bass but with the small noval tubes you can forget about hooking up to speakers altogether.(bar a few exceptions)
I always found the ECC88 family of tubes to be a bit forced in their representation of music in the long run.
Listening to that on headphones (I don't like to have anything other than the wife around my head) doesn't really apeal to me.

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