Hybrid Valve Headphone Amp with DAC

2 Reviews

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USD $‎229.95
On Sale - Regular Price $269.95

Transform your smart phone, mp3 player, DAP, tablet, or laptop music with tube tone that fits in the palm of your hand. This portable valve amplifier will take your audio listening to the next level while you enjoy vacuum tube tones everywhere you go.

Saviaudio's SA9227 and Texas Instruments PCM5102A are at the heart of our extremely hi resolution DAC valve amplifier. This DAC provides you with resolution up to 32bit/ 384kHz.

From IMS:

Walk into the lounge of any keen Audio Enthusiast and you'll see a Tube Amplifier at the heart of their system. Why? Quite simply because the old fashioned vacuum tube amps gave the best sound. So what if there was a pocket size tube amp that would give us back the rich audio quality our smartphones so badly lack?

The Hybrid Valve Headphone Amplifier gives us back the warm rich quality sound that was lost when transistors took over from valves. Plug it in between your phone or MP3 player and your headphones. Your music now passes though real glass tubes resulting in vastly improved sound quality. It will also boost the volume so you'll now have enough power to drive your headphones.

Amp Specifications

When designing the Valve Amplifier, our first priority was to get the best sound possible. Right down to the individual resistors we've chosen components to give the lowest noise and to be virtually distortion free. We've even hand measured each tube before assembly and matched these to be within 1%.

-    Superior sound quality

-    Ultra low distortion <0.00008%

-    Ratheon 6418 Tubes

-    Burr Brown OPA2134 FET Op Amp

-    Metal Film Resistors

-    2oz Copper PCB, lead free

-    Low ESR Tantalum Capacitors

-    Output impedance 4-32 Ohms

-    750mW Output Drive

-    1800mAh Lithium Battery gives 10 hours playtime between charges

-    3.5mm audio input and output sockets

-    Micro USB charging socket

-    Overall Dimensions 105mm (H) x 59mm (W) x 14mm (D)

-    Machined from solid aluminum block resulting in high shielding from electromagnetic noise

-    Weight 90g

DAC Specifications

-   SA9227 master DAC streaming audio controller from Saviaudio supports resolution up to 32bit and sampling rates up to 384kHz

-   USB 2.0 high speed compliant

-   Bravotech jitter-less outputs using local clock in Async-mode

-   PCM5102A slave DAC from Texas Instruments, 32bit, 384kHz

-   16mHz crystal locked

-   Micro USB

-   Compatible with all Windows operating systems and Apple OS


Made by Raytheon, makers of the patriot missile and Apollo's guidance computers. These 6418 tubes are special: You'll find these same valves in some of the best studio microphones such as the Audio Technica's AT3060.

If you bump the amplifier you will hear a slight ringing sound similar to if you tap a wine glass, this ring is called microphonics and unavoidable with many small tubes. The ringing will die down quite quickly. It's not a buzzing noise but a pure tone. When you have music playing though the amp and you knock it slightly it will be hard to hear any ringing. When you turn the amp up full volume with no music and knock it the effect will be more obvious. This is how valves behave. The upside to this annoying phenomenon is the warm rich sound which valves deliver and transistors cannot.

What's Included

-    Hybrid Tube Headphone Amp - 1

-    3.5mm to 3.5 mm interconnect - 1

-    Micro USB to USB - 1

Made in New Zealand

Additional Information

Related Websites:

Original Kickstarter Page

Head-Fi Forum Discussion

Warranty and Support Information

Warranty Period: 6 months as provided by the manufacturer, IMS

For more warranty and support visit their website: www.ims-nz.com

Ratings & Reviews

2 reviews

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The Best


It’s the best small headphone amp I have had. I’ve tried a few, a 300B Cary, a HifiMan Tube DAC and a Little Dot. This DAC Hybrid Valve Headphone Amp is GREAT! 

 Once again thank you. All the Best!

Enjoying it every day for now about 1.5 years


I have this wonderful little headphone amp now for almost 1.5 years. It sounds great. I use it with the Ibasso DX 90. This combination with my beyer dynamic head set sounds great. Even after lots of hours it stills does not fatigue me.

O yes the Ibasso plays now also longer since it feeds now a high input impedance instead of low ohm headset.

Highly recommended.