Musical Fidelity Announces M1 HPA Headphone Amp & M1 DAC

Digital-to-analog converters,
Headphone amps and amp/DACs
Musical Fidelity M1 DAC,
Musical Fidelity M1 HPA
Musical Fidelity Announces M1 HPA Headphone Amp & M1 DAC

(Editorial Note: Late last week, the AVguide news desk received word of two new products from the British high end audio company Musical Fidelity: the M1 HPA Class A Headphone Amp/Preamp and the M1 DAC.

Below, we present the text of Musical Fidelity’s two press releases on its new M1-series components, along with product images. At this stage it is not yet clear whether the components will be available in the U.S. market or what their U.S. prices might eventually be.)


New! M1 HPA pure Class A headphone amp/preamp.
Vanishingly low distortion.
Ultra low output impedance line in/loop out. USB input.
Superlative sound.
UK retail £499.


We all know that when we listen to pure Class A amps such as the AMS35i or AMS50 that the sound is incredible. It is richer, fuller, smoother and the bottom end is more extended. That’s why the reputation of pure Class A amplifiers remains so strong; they really are the best thing.

Musical Fidelity has a long history of making superlative headphone amplifiers. The M1 HPA pure Class A headphone amp has exactly the same sonic characteristics with headphones as our pure Class A amplifiers with loudspeakers. It sounds fantastic.

The M1 HPA pure Class A headphone amp’s technical performance is outstanding. Distortion is incredibly low (less than .0005% across the band) frequency response is ruler flat. Noise ratio is outstanding. In every technical parameter the M1 pure Class A headphone amp is outstanding.

The HPA has very low output impedance (below 1 ohm). Headphone amps’ output impedance is a usually ignored but very important measurement. The HPA’s extraordinary low output impedance means that it can drive any headphone with complete linearity and low distortion. The vast majority of competitive headphone amplifiers cannot do this because they have much higher output impedance.

We believe that neutrality and complete faithfulness to the original recording is what hi-fi exists for. If you agree with that ideal then the HPA pure Class A headphone amp is for you.

The HPA has two inputs; line and USB (from computers etc.). It has two headphone sockets on the front panel and a loop out facility. 

Importantly the HPA also has a variable line output so that it can be used as a very high quality simple preamp.

Available from late August with a UK retail price of £499 inc VAT.


New! M1 DAC, 24-bit 192K true upsampling. 
Four switchable digital inputs, single ended and balanced outputs. 
£399 UK retail.


Musical Fidelity was pretty well the first company in the world to make a DAC. Since then we have an unbroken lineage of top performing, top value digital products.

The new M1 DAC is the fruit of our 23 years experience of making top performance DACs. It has four digital inputs; coax, optical, balanced and USB.

The M1 DAC will lock on to any SP diff signal at; 32kHz, 44.1kHz, 48kHz, 88kHz, 96kHz and 192kHz. The input sampling frequency is displayed on the front panel.

The M1 DAC upsamples to 24-bit at 192kHz. This is genuine true upsampling.

The M1’s technical performance is, pretty well, as good as any at any price. We know this sounds like an incredible claim but it’s true. Musical Fidelity’s state-of-the-art circuit design and pcb layout with the use of top quality digital components gives state-of-the-art performance. There’s no secret or mystery about this. We use top quality digital components in carefully designed circuit configurations which are subtly implemented on brilliant pcb layouts. Unsurprisingly the result is state-of-the-art performance. It’s just that the price is competitive so many people find it hard to believe.

The M1 DAC has vanishingly low distortion, typically less than 0.005% across the band. Frequency response is ruler flat. Jitter is extremely low. The noise ratio is outstanding, one of the quietest DACs in the world regardless of price. Looking at the M1 DAC’s total measurements and comparing them to any DAC up to ten times its price you will see that, on balance, the M1 DAC is equal to or better than any. 

The M1 DAC has a high quality power supply. Interestingly it has choke filtration on the mains input. This, effectively, is a mains signal conditioner, which increases the performance and value of the M1 to even greater heights.

The M1 DAC’s UK retail will be about £399. It will be available from early July.


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