AXPONA 2014: Sony at Ear Gear Expo


The personal audio team from Sony Electronics had a prominent table at the Ear Gear Expo this year, bringing their top-shelf headphone amp/DAC combos for folks to listen to. The $999 HAP-S1 (shown here in silver and black) is a DSD-capable DAC and integrated amplifier (40wpc in Class A/B). There’s an integral headphone jack, of course, and wire/WiFi support for streaming your audio. 

I was looking for the new $599 PHA-2 portable headphone amp/DAC that’s supposed to be recently available, but I didn’t see it out when I visited.

The Sony push for DSD support is a fun thing to see — I love it when a mainstream brand uses it’s clout to build and market high quality audio. Whether or not DSD, as a file format, will do any better in the market than SACD did is another matter, but time will tell. I do know that DSD support is pretty hot in the high-end right now, and that’s only a good thing.


About Scot Hull 1057 Articles
Scot started all this back in 2009. He is currently the Publisher here at PTA, the Publisher at The Occasional Magazine, and the Executive Producer at The Occasional Podcast. There are way too many words about him over on the Contributors page.