HiFiMAN EF500: High-precision DAC and headphone amplifier

HiFiMAN is known mainly for its on-ear planar headphones such as the Sundara and Arya They have released several desktop amps in the past, such as the EF600. Now HiFiMAN is expanding this line with two new devices: EF500 and EF499. These DACs/amplifiers are entry-level products: the EF500 costs $459 and the EF499 costs $299.



HiFiMAN EF500​

The HiFiMAN EF500 desktop DAC/amplifier features HIFIMAN’s Hymalaya LEladder DAC, which consists of an array of high-precision resistors using a ladder conversion method. This approach allows you to convert a digital signal with maximum accuracy and overall musicality. Signal to noise ratio, total harmonic distortion and power consumption are at the highest musical and efficient levels. The highlight of the EF500 is the HIFIMAN Hymalaya LE R2R DAC, which provides unrivaled audio output, especially compared to the more common PCM1704 module. Hymalaya LE, thanks to a new algorithm and 0.01% precision resistors, achieves a THD (total harmonic distortion) level of 0.0025% (-8 dB), with distortion reduced to unheard of low levels without any audible deviation.

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Features of HiFiMAN EF500:

  • 3.5mm single-ended headphone output
  • Volume control
  • XLR 4-pin balanced headphone outputs
  • Single-ended RCA outputs
  • Inputs
    • USB-C
    • Coaxial
    • USB-B
    • Coaxial/Net+USB function switch
  • THD+N (line out):0.0025% (-8 dB)
  • Channel Separation: 131±3dB
  • Signal-to-noise ratio: 117 dB (A-weighted)
  • Maximum Output Power: 4.5 WPC@32Ω balanced/1.32 WPC@32Ω unbalanced