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HIFIMAN EF2A USB Headphone Amplifier

3.5 out of 5 stars 89 customer reviews
| 26 answered questions

Price: $169.00 & FREE Shipping
Only 4 left in stock.
Ships from and sold by Hi-Fi Heaven-net.
  • An affordable alternative in a tube-driven headphone amplifier
  • A hybrid design.
  • Using 6J1 tubes for its input stage and incorporates a Burr-Brown PCM2702 DAC Chip
3 new from $169.00 1 used from $95.00
This item’s packaging will indicate what is inside and cannot be hidden.
$169.00 & FREE Shipping Only 4 left in stock. Ships from and sold by Hi-Fi Heaven-net.

Frequently Bought Together

  • HIFIMAN EF2A  USB Headphone Amplifier
  • +
  • Mediabridge 3.5mm Male to 2-Male RCA Adapter (6 Feet) - Step Down Design - (Part# MPC-35-2XRCA-6 )
Total price: $178.99
Buy the selected items together

Technical Details

  • USB Headphone Amplifier
  • DAC Chip: Burr-Brown PCM2702

Product Description

Product Description

Add the magic of tubes to the sound of your music Plug the HiFiMAN EF2A into one of your computer's USB ports and prepare to be impressed. This compact digital-to-analog converter/headphone amp bypasses your computer's built-in DAC and audio circuitry - processing your digital music files outside the noisy environment of your computer for far better sound quality. The EF2A's vacuum tube headphone amplifier brings your tunes to life, imparting smoothness and clarity. You'll hear more dynamics and detail that you can really savor on your headphones. The EF2A also includes an analog audio input so you can enjoy improvements in sound with another music source. This is one component that looks so cool, you'll absolutely want to show it off on your desktop.

From the Manufacturer

An affordable alternative in a tube-driven headphone amplifier, the EF2A is a hybrid design, USB headphone amplifier using 6J1 tubes for its input stage and incorporates a Burr-Brown PCM2702 DAC Chip. The EF2A provides USB input and features 16 bit 44.1 kHz performance. Designed for discriminating music listeners who demand performance and value.

Product Information

Product Dimensions 5.6 x 3.4 x 1.8 inches
Item Weight 3 pounds
Shipping Weight 3 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
Manufacturer HiFiMAn Electronics
ASIN B004357WL8
Item model number EF2A
Customer Reviews
3.5 out of 5 stars 89 customer reviews

3.5 out of 5 stars
Best Sellers Rank #122 in Electronics > Accessories & Supplies > Audio & Video Accessories > Headphone Accessories > Amps
Date first available at Amazon.com July 24, 2009

Warranty & Support

Product Warranty: For warranty information about this product, please click here

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Customer Questions & Answers

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Verified Purchase
The HiFiMAN EF2A is an excellent headphone amp with my Sennheiser HD600 headphones. I have owned the headphones for a few years and considered headphone amps before, but the HD600 sounded so good without an amp that it never became a priority. What a huge improvement this amp provides to bring more out of these headphones.

The features that convinced me to give this amp a try are the choice of digital or analog inputs and the tubes. The onboard Burr-Brown DAC, connected with the supplied USB cable, is superior to my PC soundcard, but the sky is the limit if you want to invest in an even better DAC and use the RCA inputs on the amp. I have most of my CD collection ripped to an external HDD as lossless WAV files, which I prefer over the sound of compressed MP3 songs. I find tubes take the edge off digital music providing a slightly warmer sound that is still detailed. This combination of features and sound quality will be hard to beat for the price.
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Verified Purchase
I really love this product except the default vacuum tube.
As far as I looked for, there is no such product that has DAC in vacuum tube headphone amplifier.
Besides it was one of the cheapest vacuum tube headphone amp.

I started liking to listen to "quiet music" such has Norah Jones.
I don't have any other experience with vacuum tube other than this,
(I grew up with sound of MOS-FET integrated amp and 3-way speakers)
so I cannot say much about comparison, but still I am happy with this product.
(I think it is good price and quality to start for seeking the world of vacuum tube.)

ONE NOTE ABOUT VACUUM TUBE;
As I wrote at first, I was not really happy with the tubes that came with the product.
Just like other people write, it's too bright and it is even annoying in high frequency range.
So what I did was to look for other vacuum tube.
You can find this type of tube by typing "6AK5 vacuum tube" on google.com.
I am using two from GE that I purchased at eBay for 20 dollars.
They made the sound really warm, and I love to use this amp everyday.
I think upgrade for 20 bucks DOES worth it.

Using headphones: SONY MDR-V6
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Verified Purchase
drives any pair of cans with authority, bypassing the computer DAC and using the Hi-Fi burr-brown chip, absolutely brilliant. from there the sound is driven through the vacuum tubes and out to the headphones. the sound is clean but slightly bright. the highs are definitely there, mid-range clarity is punchy, and the bass warm, not muddled or boomy. it must be noted that a 'burn in' process must be completed for at least 10 hours for the vacuum tubes. otherwise you might be disappointed at first, it will be harsh at first, then become smooth, very smooth. cheers.
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Verified Purchase
I ordered the HiFiMan EF2A on Feb. 8, 2013 and have had it for about three weeks. I have Sennheiser HD598 headphones plugged into the front, USB running from the back to my HP Pro desktop, and I replaced the included Chinese 6J1 tubes with a matched pair of Westinghouse 6AK5W tubes (circa the early 1960s). You don't have to use the Westinghouse tubes, but I would definitely upgrade (these should all be compatible and you can find them on eBay ranging from $8 per up to $125 each: EF95, M8100, 5654SQ, 403A, 403B or 6J1P-EV; there are even more compatible ones out there, but this is a decent list).
My listening tastes are primarily a cappella and jazz, though other styles certainly creep into my playlists. I listen (almost exclusively) to lossless WMA and FLAC, or directly from the CDs.
There are certainly more expensive headphone tube amplifiers out there, but this little (about 5.5"W x 3.5"D) amp has a beautiful, rich sound. Note, it is a powered amp via wall outlet (not powered via USB); don't expect to travel with it attached to your iPod (there is no battery).
The EF2A has plenty of power; I have the volume somewhere around 3 percent. I would likely go deaf around 15 percent. I know more power is needed for bookshelf speakers. Just know that unless you have headphones with an extremely low impedance, you will likely barely nudge the volume knob up from its initial resting point.
The highs and lows both sound pretty clean, even at low listening levels. Voices are very clean and articulated (again, I listen to a lot of vocal music); and yet the bass is solid.
I have not had the same experience as others who say the left channel seems favored. However, (as I noted above) this is a powerful amp and I can't see a good ($200+) pair of headphones needing to have the volume higher than 3 to 7 percent. Also, I have not used the RCA stereo input and can't comment on how it functions.
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Verified Purchase
The Hi-Fi Man EF2A is a neat little device. It mounted just fine as an audio device on my macbook pro. It's build quality is better than I expected and the clear acrylic top is a nice touch. The sound quality is just fine; very detailed. However, it's one problem is that at low settings on the volume knob the image is very biased to one ear. A "get around" for this is to alter the gain structure so as to decrease the incoming signal so that you can run the volume knob hotter. This could be a problem if you are using a source with a fixed output level. Ideally, I should be able set my gain structure in any manner that yields the best sound to my ears not encumbered by this flaw.

I like the unit and am glad to have it, especially for the price. Unfortunately, I cannot give it high praise as I feel it fails at achieving it's fundamental goal. It's flaw should be in the cosmetics or the power supply or something. Not in the receiving and amplifying of audio signal in a clean and consistant manner; the only thing it HAS to do well to be what it is...
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