CanJam NYC 2022: Centrance, HEDD

As I walked by the Centrance booth, Centrance owner Michael Goodman waved. I waved back, walked over, and listened to his HiFi-M8 V2 Portable Reference DAC/Amp ($749) and Ampersand Balanced Portable Reference Headphone Power Amplifier ($749), connected to a pair of HEDDphone Air Motion Transformer headphones ($1899; see Herb Reichert's July 2020 Gramophone Dreams column for a listening test.)

The HiFi-M8 V2 has a gain dial, bass and treble controls, asynchronous USB digital and 3.5mm analog inputs (plus Bluetooth), balanced output, bandwidth specified at more than 40kHz, and a “Stamina” feature that turns off the dual meters and part of the power amp circuitry to extend play time.

The Ampersand Balanced Portable Reference Headphone Power Amplifier features 2.3Wpc into 16 ohms, a three-position gain switch, one balanced (4.4mm) and one unbalanced (3.5mm) inputs, balanced (XLR, 4.4mm) and unbalanced (1/4") outputs, class-A "AmpExtreme" technology with bipolar power supplies, LED meters, an anodized aluminum chassis, and a battery power supply.

I didn’t note the music I listened to, but the Centrance/HEDD combo had punch, ample low-end, clarity, and plenty of drive.

Centrance image