The LA4 features relay controlled volume and relay controlled input and output switching. It leverages the fully-balanced 256-step attenuators that were introduced earlier this year in the HPA4. According to Sales Manager, Rory Rall, “The HPA4 has been embraced by headphone enthusiasts, but we found that many audiophiles were buying the HPA4 for use as a preamplifier. The HPA4 line stage is pristine and audiophiles have been reporting significant improvements when replacing other preamplifiers.” According to Benchmark VP, John Siau, “The LA4 is built on the HPA4 platform. We have eliminated the headphone outputs but have kept the line amplifier unchanged. The LA4 is the perfect device to place between a DAC3 D/A converter and an AHB2 power amplifier. No other set of components will offer better measured performance at the system level. The sound is amazing!” The LA4 will retail for $2495.00 and will ship October 22, 2018.
The DAC3 B is the latest addition to Benchmark’s DAC3 product family. The DAC3 B is a fixed-gain 24-bit D/A converter with studio-level and consumer-level outputs. It offers the full performance of the flagship DAC3 HGC, but eliminates the headphone outputs, analog inputs, and volume functions. It adds a control lock function that can lock the controls to prevent tampering and accidental changes. According to Rall, “the DAC3 B is the perfect companion to the HPA4 headphone amplifier or the LA4 line amplifier.” The DAC3 B and LA4 can be controlled in unison from a single Benchmark remote control. The DAC3 B will retail for $1695 and will ship October 22, 2018. According to Siau, “The very first DAC3 B will be delivered to the winner of our drawing at RMAF 2018. Serial number 1 will ship to this lucky winner on October 22.”
Today at RMAF, EnjoytheMuscic.com presented Benchmark with their “Best of 2018 Award” for the DAC3 HGC. This award is on display in room 1000.
The Benchmark DAC3 B, LA4, AHB2 system can be auditioned at RMAF rooms 1000 and 8007.
The Benchmark DAC3 B, HPA4 headphone system can be auditioned at RMAF CANJAM tables 32, 33, 34, 66, 77, 78, 2001 and 2010.