Review: OPPO HA-2 Portable Headphone Amplifier
Alongside the PM-3, OPPO has also seen it fit to drop off the HA-2 for us to review. The HA-2 is a portable headphone amplifier/digital audio converter combo that is meant to be paired up to the PM-3. So without further ado, let’s just dive right into it.
In terms of design, the HA-2 is unlike some of the other DACs/amps that I’ve seen thus far. Whereas most DACs are usually black boxes of various sizes, the HA-2 looks more like a power bank by comparison. It’s reasonably small, sleek and comes with a leather casing. Simply put, the HA-2 is a looker.
For audio output, the HA-2 comes with a single 3.5 mm stereo output as well as a single 3.5 mm stereo audio-in port. As the device is a meant to be compatible with smartphones and the like, you’ll find a USB port and a micro USB port at the bottom of the device.
Furthermore, the HA-2 comes with all the cables you need to connect the amplifier to your device of choice, be it smartphones or your own computer. One curious thing to note is that the toggle right next to the USB ports needs to be switched depending on your audio input. Apple devices occupy the A slot, the computer occupies the B slot, while all other devices, such as Android smartphones, occupy the C slot.
ALL IN THE DETAILS
Performance-wise, the HA-2 is very versatile, being able to drive a huge variety of headphones. Much like the PM-3, the HA-2 produces monitor-like sound, which means the sound is flat and forward. This allows the HA-2 to synergise extremely well with the PM-3.
At the side of the device, you’ll find two switches. The first of these is bass boost, which boosts the low end frequency by about 5 decibels. The other switch allows you to toggle between Low Gain and High Gain, depending on how power hungry your headphones are. As I don’t really have any particularly demanding headphones, I stuck with Low Gain throughout my usage.
ON THE GO
Since the HA-2 is touted as a portable headphone amplifier, I’ve brought the thing out for a field test. Battery life on the HA-2 is rather decent as it is able to last around 6 hours on a single charge. Charging up the HA-2 is rather fast too as the amplifier comes with OPPO’s own VOOC rapid charge technology. Also interesting is the fact that the HA-2 can also function as a surrogate power bank, although doing so would obviously eat into the HA-2’s play time.
After roughly 2 weeks of use, I can safely say that the HA-2 is a great amplifier/DAC to own. I can also safely say that not many would actually buy it. Why? Because of the RM1,399 asking price. Yes, the HA-2 is much more expensive than the PM-3. If you’re not an audiophile, I suspect spending over a thousand Ringgit for the HA-2 would be out of the question.
Verdict : A great portable amp that comes with a rather steep asking price for the average consumer
Total Score 9.0