Schiit Lyr 6W Tube Headphone Amp
By James Grahame
I am juvenile enough to admit that I enjoy writing about Schiit Audio just because of the name. Their latest aluminum-clad creation is the $449 Lyr hybrid headphone amp that pumps out a terrifying 6W RMS directly into your noggin. They explain:
"Now, if you’re a headphone guy, you’re thinking 'Holy Schiit! 6 watts! That’ll make the magic smoke come out of my headphones! Why the hell do you need that kind of power?' Well, we have one word for you: orthodynamics. And two more: Why not? If everyone wanted polite little low-power headphone amps, this would be one awfully boring world, wouldn’t it?"
For those who don't remember, orthodynamic headphones were a fad in the 1980s. They use magnets with opposing charges instead of more common electrostatic diaphragms. The result is a very musical set of cans, but they need a massive amount of power. That's where the Lyr comes in.
The Lyr claims 0.1% THD 20Hz- 20kHz at 1V and features a pair of ECC88 dual triode tubes.The company encourages you to try substituting 6DJ8 or 6922 tubes -- new or old -- in your quest for the perfect tube tone.
The amp includes a 5 year warranty (except for the tubes, which are covered for 90 days) and pre-orders will ship on March 1, 2011.