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DAC3 - Class A+ Recommended Processor - Stereophile

Stereophile 2023 Recommended Component Badge

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Benchmark DAC3

DAC3 - Receives Stereophile's Highest "Class A+" Rating

"The DAC3 B is a stripped- down, lower-priced version of the DAC3 HGC, which omits the headphone amplifier, balanced and unbalanced analog inputs, volume, mute, and polarity controls." - Stereophile

Benchmark DAC3 HGC

"The DAC3 was all about depths, in several respects...I heard deeper into the music."

"All I can say is Wow!"

- John Atkinson

"In a Follow-Up, JCA wrote of using the Benchmark processor with the same company's AHB2 power amp—a combination of high source output voltage and modest amplifier gain that he describes as 'optimal for minimizing noise and distortion' —and reported hearing 'richer and more interesting' reproduction of very subtle details."

- Stereophile

Fall 2023 Recommended Components Awards Page

Spring 2023 Recommended Components Awards Page

DAC3 HGC Review

DAC3 B Review

Stereophile Spring 2023 Recommended Component

Stereophile Fall 2023 Recommended Component

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AHB2 - A-Rated Recommended Power Amplifier - Stereophile

AHB2 - A-Rated Recommended Power Amplifier - Stereophile

by Benchmark Media Systems September 15, 2023

Stereophile LogoBenchmark AHB2 Power Amplifier

AHB2 - Receives Stereophile's Highest "A" Rating for Power Amplifiers

"Benchmark's AHB2 makes use of THX Corporation's Achromatic Audio Amplifier (AAA) technology, in which a low-power feed-forward amplifier drives a low-bias class-AB output section."

- Stereophile, 2023

"Much more apparent low-level detail in already-familiar recordings" - Kalman Rubinson

"A tonal balance that sounded more 'right' than any of [the other amps on hand]." - Kalman Rubinson

"An extraordinary amplifier." - John Atkinson

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LA4 - Class A Recommended Preamplifier - Stereophile

LA4 - Class A Recommended Preamplifier - Stereophile

by Benchmark Media Systems September 15, 2023

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Benchmark LA4 Silver

LA4 - Receives Stereophile's Highest "Class A" Rating for Preamplifiers

"Benchmark's usual approach to design is to out-spec the competition, and so it is here. Like other Benchmark equipment he has tested, the affordable LA4 challenged the resolution of John Atkinson's test instruments, with 'superb' channel separation, 'extremely low noise, and virtually no power-supply-related spuriae.'"

"Benchmark's LA4 is the widest-bandwidth, widest-dynamic-range, lowest-noise, lowest-distortion preamplifier I have encountered." - John Atkinson

"In his listening room, Kalman Rubinson compared the LA4 to a cable—and couldn't hear any difference. He concludes, 'the LA4 is probably the most transparent and revealing audio component I've ever used. It does not seem to leave any fingerprints on the sound.'"

- Stereophile, 2023

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HPA4 - Class A Recommended Headphone Amplifier - Stereophile

HPA4 - Class A Recommended Headphone Amplifier - Stereophile

by Benchmark Media Systems September 15, 2023

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Benchmark HPA4 Silver

HPA4 - Receives Stereophile's "Class A" Rating for Headphone Amplifiers

"The HPA4 adds a THX888 amplification stage to Benchmark's LA4 line preamplifier  to allow it to drive even low-impedance headphones with aplomb."

"It keeps the LA4's balanced and single-ended preamplifier outputs and adds a headphone output on a 4-pin XLR jack and a single-ended headphone output on a 1/4" jack."

- Stereophile, 2023

"The HPA4 showed each instrument in dramatic bas-relief. It accomplished this by presenting cleaner, better-articulated bass and manufacturing a sharper midrange focus than I had experienced previously with either my solid state reference, the Pass Labs HPA-1, or the tubed Linear Tube Audio Z10e." - Herb Reichert

"The LA4 preamplifier was the widest-bandwidth, widest-dynamic-range, lowest-noise, lowest-distortion preamplifier I had encountered at that time. . . . To those virtues, the HPA4 adds equally superb balanced and single-ended headphone outputs." - John Atkinson

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