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Fostex HP-A8C 32 bit DAC Headphone Amplifier

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The new HP-A8C is Fostex's flagship 32bit DAC / Headphone Amplifier model and features finely designed Analog and Digital circuitries as well as the epoch-making DSD audio playback function.

Housed in a gorgeous enclosure featuring glass front panel and black side panel, the HP-A8C is set to spark the interest of both high-end headphone users as well as PC audio makers, professionals and enthusiasts.

Partner with the new TH-900, premium headphones for excellent results.

HiFi Fostex HP-A8 Review by Alan Sircom, Apr. 18, 2013

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High fidelity 32bit D/A converter (Asahi Kasei's AK4399) and all discrete analog circuitry headphone amplifier.

Complies with USB Audio Class 2.0 up to 32bit / 192kHz (24bit on Windows)

Asynchronous mode by highly precise TCXO (Temperature Compensated Cristal Oscillator) clock.

Highly precise level adjustment by an electronic volume designed for audio equipment.

Large capacity toroidal power transformer.

Built-in SD (SDHC) card drive for epoch-making DSD file (DSF format) reproduction in addition to the firmware update.

Selectable between the internal clock and the external clock (except for USB and SD card)

Built-in up-sampling function of x 2 and x4

Digital Filter selection between the conventional "sharp roll-off" and the "minimum delay" developed by Asahi Kasei to eliminate pre-echo.

Direct Out mode bypassing the volume control circuit.Variable headphone amplifier's gain from 0dB to -12dB by 0.5dB step for perfect match with any type of headphones.

Various inputs including USB, AES/EBU, Coaxial, Optical (x2) and analog RCA.A dedicated Remote Controller is supplied.

Beautiful white Organic LED for the display


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Additional Info

  • High fidelity 32bit D/A converter plus all discrete analog circuitry headphone amplifier
  • Complies with USB Audio Class 2.0 up to 32bit / 192kHz (24bit on Windows)
  • Asynchronous mode by highly precise TCXO clock
  • Inputs include: USB, AES/EBU, Coaxial, Optical (x2) and analog RCA
  • Built-in SD (SDHC) card slot for (DSF format) reproduction
  • 1 year warranty.


USB port    sampling frequency:    up to 32bit/192kHz (24bit on Windows)
    Interface:    USB high speed
Digital (Optical)    Connector x 2:    optical, square
    Format:    S/PDIF (44.1kHz – 192kHz)
Digital (Coaxial)    Connector:    RCA Pin
    Format:    S/PDIF (44.1kHz – 192kHz)
Analog    Connector:    RCA Pin (L, R)

Phones 1,2    Connector:    Stereo phone
    Max Output:    700mW (32-ohm loaded)
    Opt load Impedance:    16 ohm – 600 ohm
    THD:    less than 0.002% at 1kHz, 32-ohm loaded, 100mW
    Frequency response:    10Hz - 80kHz +-0.3dB
Analog     Connector:    RCA Pin
    Opt load impedance:    more than 10k ohm
    THD:    less than 0.002% at 1kHz
    Frequency response:    10Hz - 80kHz +-0.3dB
Digital    Connector:    Optical, square
    Format    S/PDIF

    Power Consumption:    24 W
    Dimensions:    213mm(W) x 78mm(H) x 314mm(D)
    Weight:    approx. 3.75kgs
    Accessories:    1 x remote controller, Manual


Wow Wow Wow!Review by Raymond Senn
I hooked up the Fostex HP8AC yesterday and all I can say is wow wow wow... I was this close to thinking that I had to return the unit because with the digital audio input, I could not hear the audio from SACD and HDMI Blu-ray. Then of course it hit me, once I switched over to using the analog input on the Fostex via the analog output of my anthem, copy protection was no longer an issue and I could sit back and enjoy. The HP8AC sounds absolutely stunning with my Sennheiser HD 800 headphones and Moon Audio Black Dragon V2 headphone cable (and to think that the cable isn't even broken in yet!). Because I now have the Fostex HP-A8C hooked via the Analog inputs, I am less interested in the question in my initial post about the digital coaxial cables. However, I am still very interested in the 5 meter USB cable question; Also I may still wind up purchasing a good coaxial digital cable should I decide to use the digital output from the Fostex in order to drive my Anthem Statement D2V (when using the Fostex as a DAC for USB audio).

Speaking of USB audio... I took some cheap USB 2.0 cables and hooked up my iPad (3rd gen) to the Fostex and then put on my HD800 with Black Dragon cables. I then fired up a lowly 44.1 kHz music file of Faith Hill's song called "Breathe". The results... holy $&@)! I was absolutely stunned. What a wonderful combination these cans and Fostex make! Sent shivers down my spine. I was so floored that I listened to the song three times in a row. I then ran downstairs and got my mother who happened to be in the house so I could give her an audition. So here she was, an 82-year-old woman cranking up the headphones as loud as can be, just as I do. Bottom line ... she was transported to another place and time. Amazing amazing amazing!

Drew said he loves the Fostex too... I don't have any experience with other headphone amps but man I agree that this one's a killer! So sexy looking too... The Fostex that is! (As for the remote - Let's just say that you should make use of a universal remote - Oh well, no product is perfect I guess).

Great way to end 2012. Looking forward to any comments... Ray (Posted on 1/2/2013)

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