"It’s ... been a while since I have been this excited about an audio product."
"I do have a good queue of products that deserve a review here, especially in the headphone department: Audeze LCD-2C, Quad Era-1, Brainwavz Alara. Hopefully I will get some time for them as well. However, in the meanwhile I am using them to test this wonderful wonderful headphone amplifier."
"I like the touchscreen and the implementation. It’s fast and easy to get used to."
"It’s the first time when I have heard the headphones mentioned above to their full potential. In the first minute my jaw dropped ..."
"This is the fastest and the most controlled bass I have ever heard. It goes deep, it’s organic when it needs to be, but it doesn’t linger at all. It’s controlled by an iron fist. The punch is really really fun and strong."
"The midrange is really pure and lively. The instruments and voices have vibrating, lively and pure textures."
"The treble is really extended, very detailed and sparkly. It doesn’t have any touch of brightness, but it does brighten up the place in a good way if you know what I mean."
"The level of detail is amazing on HPA4. I seem to discover other sounds in some songs that I did not notice before."
"The voices are incredibly pure and textured. Depending on the artist and the song, the voice can sound incredibly pure, stammeringly clean and extended, but also guttural/throaty in other cases."
"When you talk about natural sound, about emotion in this domain it usually means that the audio component adds some coloration that give a more natural tonality, more weight to the sound, more present voices, less harshness, etc. In this case the emotion comes from the purity of the sound from the fact that HPA4 completely removes itself from the system."
"From my perspective this is the best headphone amplifier I have ever heard. It’s no competition really."
"It’s not cheap, I can give you that. Is it worth it? That is up to each and every one of you, but if you really want the best amplifier out there, an end game amplifier…this is it."
"Thanks to the special, discrete analog circuit/relay attenuator, this may be the most transparent line-stage preamplifier in the audiophile world."
"If you got a great-sounding source, the LA4 presents the audio in its original state — with gain or attenuation to the amplifier. I have never heard such low-level detail from a pre."
"The better the DAC, the better you hear it through a quality amp and speakers. It is quiet as a top-notch DAC, with S/N exceeding -135 dB and, feature-wise, it comes with unbalanced/balanced I/O and a really slick user interface."
"I use the four-input LA4 for audiophile A/B testing of DACs, monitoring my Hi-Res home recording/editing/mastering projects, as well as just listening how good my vast collection of 24 bit and DSD music sounds through an accurate amp and speakers."
"A steal at $2,500!"
- John Gatski, Everything Audio Network
"Since the HPA4 arrived, I have rediscovered so many of my favorite works all over again with improved detail retrieval dynamics and transparency that it’s hard to pull myself away!"
"It drove my power hungry Abyss Phi TC headphones with complete authority, but it was still dead silent and nimble enough to amplify my easy to drive Focal Utopia headphones."
"Rarely have I come across such a wonderfully revealing amplifier that can drive many different types of headphones so darn well! The solid build construction and various controls make the $2,995 price tag seem a bit low based on the other headphone amplifiers in this market space."- Peter Pialis, Headphone.guru
"Benchmark Media Systems’ LA4 preamplifier presented an utterly realistic reproduction of what was contained on each recording I played through it -- and weak recordings stood out more than usual. The LA4’s clean, analytical abilities are unmatched by any similarly priced preamplifier I know of. The LA4’s touchscreen brings it up to date with current user interfaces, and permits functions, such as balance control and muting at the device."
"If you want a preamp that editorializes, look elsewhere."
"If, like me, you value a high-resolution, totally neutral musical performance, add a Benchmark LA4 to your system, particularly if you already own a Benchmark DAC."
- Erich Wetzel, SoundStage! Hi-Fi