The headphone amplification circuity included in a typical source (for example, a smartphone) or amplifier is rather basic, and rarely offers the kind of sonic transparency the same product manages through its other outputs.
Dedicated headphone amps are a better option as they're designed with greater care, and have the electrical characteristics required to get the best sound from your headphones.
Many modern headphone amps now include a built-in DAC, so you can hook up the likes of a laptop and create a compact, but very effective and entertaining desktop hi-fi system.
Whether you're looking for a budget headphone amp or can stretch your money towards a top-of-the-line effort, here are several options to choose from.
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