Headphone manufacturers are pushing high-end headphones with a premium price tag to offer the best music listening experience for audiophiles.
However, music sources like your smartphone and laptop possibly don’t have the best sound cards to make the most out of these headphones.
This is where the headphone amplifiers come in handy. These compact devices come equipped with a built-in DAC delivering Hi-Fi sound through your headphones.
In this article, we have listed the best headphone amplifiers with optical input to make the most of your high-end headphones.
Note: Deals are subject to change. Keep in mind that the price tag often varies. We recommend going on the vendor’s website to check the price. Some of the products may be out of stock by the time you’ve made your purchasing decision. So, hurry up and hit the buy button.
What are the best headphone amplifiers with optical input?
- Premium headphone amplifiers
- USB and optical input plus RCA output
- Does not require an external power source
- Streams bit-perfect HD audio based on high-performance AK4369 DAC
- Hefty price tag
Audioengine D1 is a premium headphone amplifier and comes with a price tag to match it.
It comes with 24-bit DAC and headphone amplifier to use with your computer and TV.
You can use either the USB port or optical input to bypass the computer’s sound card. It can stream bit-perfect 24/96 HD audio through your computer.
Audioengine D1 works with Windows, Linux, and Mac system with plug and play support.
- Value for money product
- Smooth sound
- Easy to use and install
- Volume control
- Limited features
If you are looking for a simple, affordable, excellent sounding headphone amplifier, check out Schiit Magni 3. It is designed to have low distortion along with a low noise floor.
Schiit Magni 3 comes with built-in delayed start-up and instant shut-down without glitches through the headphone or speakers.
With a full 2000mW into 32 ohms, Magni offers enough to power any device.
- Affordable headphone amplifier
- Optical input
- Multi-volume control to adjust RCA and headphone outputs
- Professional amp chip
- No bass boost
Fosi Audio DAC-Q5 is one of the few headphone amplifiers that come with rich input and output options.
To begin with, it offers USB, Optical, and coaxial input options and compatible with both headphones and speakers.
Fosi Audio DAC-Q5 comes equipped with a digital decoding chip with a full-size high precision low jitter clock with Burr Brown’s classic op-amp chip OPA2134.
- Excellent headphone amplifier
- Affordable price tag
- Optical, Coaxial, and USB input options
- Can manage digital power from headphone and speakers
- Nothing noticeable
AIYIMA DC5V is one of the latest entrants in the headphone amp market and offers multiple input options, including optical input.
It comes equipped with a TPA6120+OP275 headphone amplifier chipset for excellent output.
AIYIMA DC5V matches the digital power amplifier analog power amplifier for active speaker, headphone, Smartphone, iPad, DVD, PC, and other devices.
All the headphone amplifiers in this list have power, performance, resolution, and versatility to meet all your headphone needs and make the most out of it.
All the amps also offer excellent sound quality along with multiple input options making it compatible with newer and older devices.
FAQ: Learn more about headphone amps
- Are headphone amplifiers worth it?
Yes, if you already own good quality headphones, amps can improve your listening experience even more in points of volume, tone, linearity, and more.
- What does a headphone amplifier do?
Basically, an amp will boost your sound quality by modulating volume and other factors from your headphones. Note that an amp will not make poor quality headphones or speakers sound better, though.
- Can AMP damage headphones?
Yes, if you use your amp to go beyond the number of watts recommended for your headphones, in time you will ruin the sound quality and the product altogether.Editor's Note: This article was originally published in November 2019 and was revamped and updated in November 2020 for freshness, accuracy, and comprehensiveness.