Euterpe – Multifunctional Headphone Amplifier in Wooden Enclosure
- All-in-one amp that encompasses three key functions: a pure tube Headphone Amplifier, Pre-amp and a DAC
- Also acts like a headphone stand
- Allows you to choose between low/high impedance and customize it to your headphones
- Elegant design, with a wooden housing, takes little space on the rack
All-in-one amp can be used in many ways. Since it is multi-functional it can work like a headphone amplifier, pre-amplifier or DAC. Euterpe can work with its own integrated DAC, or you can connect it with another DAC as well. Also, its pre-out function can be used in case you want to connect it to a smaller system at your home.
A Headphone Stand
The possibility to be used like a headphone stand , makes Euterpe strangely utilitarian for such a high-end piece of hardware. Your headphones fit right on top, with a shallow saddle cut into the wood, to keep the cans in place. It can take a full-size headphone and won’t heat up or burn your precious cans.
DAC inside can play modern sources. OTG input capability has some baseline specifics, including a decoding capability of up to DSD128, PCM max 32bit/384kHz. An XMOS USB DAC and ESS Sabre chipset represent the brain of Euterpe. The DAC quality is impressive, with beautiful details captured.
Euterpe is a single-ended headphone amplifier with unbalanced circuit design, so there are no balanced inputs or outputs. The lineup of tubes is classic Auris, with the use of two 7-pin Ei PL95 tubes, which are the equivalent to 6DL5, and a single ECC81 input tube, also known like 12AT7 (running in Ultra-Linear mode). The output power is just a shade lower at 0.9W into a 32Ω load. The magic of Euterpe truly happens when it is connected to a high-end DAC which tells you a lot about how good this amp can be inside a beautifully crafted wooden enclosure.
To make your headphones shine in the best possible way, we designed Euterpe with impedance switcher marked with L/H (low/high). The inference here is a wider range and simpler switching design – L (low) at 32-80 Ohm and H (high), anything greater than 150 Ohm. For an example, with the majority of planar headphones that tend to rate less than 80 Ohm and are more impedance agnostic than dynamic headphones, you need to have that switch set to L (low).
Euterpe power supply is an external regulated linear power supply, with a switchable 115/230 VAC capable output, and will keep noise to the minimum. It uses a fairly stiff but sturdy 4-pin connector 1m cable, so you can place the two units pretty far apart.
Euterpe comes with the technology one would expect from an Auris Audio amplifier:
- It is composed of XMOS chip that handles USP input duties, a Sabre ES9018 chip that handles the conversion duties, a 12AT7 tube that handles the pre-amp functions with a Mundorf capacitor in line between the preamp and power tubes
- The supplied power tubes are NOS (new old stock), branded Ei and stamped Yugoslavia: A single ECC81, dual-triode tube serves as the Euterpe’s input stage, while a separate PL95 pentode power tube is provided for each channel; these feed the output transformers. A selector set on the top plate allows you to use the PL95s, or EL95s with a lower voltage
- The power supply has a captive five-pin cable that connects to the amp, and a 15-amp IEC connector for a standard grounded AC power cord
Euterpe allows you to use digital sources such as PC, or mobile devices. For such an exotic piece of gear, the Euterpe is „a piece of cake” to use. There’s a master power switch on the power supply, but the main switch is built into the volume control. Just turn it fully counterclockwise to turn the power on/off. It’s as plug ’n’ play as a tube headphone amp gets.
The Euterpe offers a bespoke exterior with the DAC and amp innards sandwiched between two pieces of solid wood. All of this sits on a beveled metal base. On any desk, Euterpe looks classy, dignified, and inviting. It’s the kind of equipment you just can’t wait to fiddle around with. The tubes are aligned centrally at the top of the matte black aluminum housing with good separation between the top and the sides of the wooden enclosure. They seem well protected from bumps, knocks and accidental finger touching.
The Euterpe takes up little space on the rack. The overall dimensions of the Euterpe are 270mm (tall) x 210mm (wide) x 230mm (deep). Considering it doubles as a headphone stand you will need 5-10 cm more space to accommodate the additional height from a headphone headband.
According to the Greek Mythology, Euterpe was one of the nine Muses, the Goddess of music and a “giver of delight” and that’s exactly what Auris Audio Euterpe will bring to the audiophile community, more happiness.