Niimbus introduces flagship headphone amplifiers US 5 and US 5 Pro

CMA Nimbus HPA US5 front

Niimbus takes the high-end approach of Violectric and carries it even further, going for ultimate sound without compromise. Both new models US 5 and US 5 Pro embody this concept down to the very detail.

The essence of 35 years of experience with exquisite circuitry culminates in the two brand new headphone amplifiers Niimbus US 5 and US 5 Pro, delivering musical high end experiences directly to the ear. Headphone playback is particularly demanding since the sound source is placed very close to the head. Due to its completely symmetrical dual mono layout, internal operating voltage of 50 V and high power output, the new flagship models drive headphones of any type with utmost precision. Working with ultra-low distortion they unveil absolute sound bliss.

From high-quality dynamic systems to planar magnetic drivers, open or closed back designs, high or low impedance – Niimbus US 5 and US 5 Pro flexibly adapt, ideally supporting every transducer to achieve perfect sound performance. The innovative Pre Gain adjustment with a wide range from -18 to +24 dB guarantees low internal amplification factors and low noise with all headphone impedances. The four powerful amplifier levels effortlessly drive high and low impedance headphones with up to 7,000 mW at 50 Ohms and output voltage of 32 V RMS at 600 Ohms. The low output impedance warrants a high attenuation factor, which combines with the sophisticated power supply with two toroidal transformers and 50,000 µF capacitors for accurate transient reproduction, high dynamics and minimum distortion.

In addition to the two unbalanced 6.3-millimeter-jacks, the Niimbus US 5 and US 5 Pro offer 4-pin-XLR- and 4.4-mm-Pentaconn-connections for balanced headphones. This provides a significantly better channel separation via individual grounding as well as an even better dynamic response. With four amplification stages, the new Niimbus models work as a push-pull-setup when wired with balanced connectors, so positive and negative membrane movements are amplified individually. Regardless of whether the signal consists of a powerful, dynamic orchestra or fragile acoustic instruments – the amplifier is always in control of the headphone drivers, delivering a fascinatingly precise and vivid sound. One balanced and two unbalanced stereo inputs function as signal inputs, while balanced and unbalanced line outputs allow the connection of further components. The line outputs can be set to either fixed or variable levels, making Niimbus US 5 and US 5 Pro reference preamps for subsequent power amplifiers or active loudspeakers.

CMA Nimbus HPA US5 back small

Niimbus delivers uncompromising perfection down to the last detail. Accordingly, when developing the reference models US 5 and US 5 Pro, particular emphasis was placed on accurate volume control. The amplifiers achieve an accuracy and channel consistency that really does justice to their high-end claims. The US 5 employs a high-quality motorized potentiometer, while the US 5 Pro uses a Relay Controlled Attenuator (RCA) system for the best – albeit most complex – analogue level control available today. The volume control is connected to a microcomputer, which in turn controls a network of fixed resistors via wear-free reed relays. With the US 5 Pro from Niimbus, the RCA network spans an impressive 256 discrete volume levels with a step size of 0.4, offering the greatest possible accuracy without colouring the signal. All this effort pays off: with the US 5 and the US 5 Pro, Niimbus offers an outstanding stereo image with detailed and artefact-free spatial instrument localisation.

On the outside, Niimbus US 5 and US 5 Pro present themselves in modest grace: the ten-millimeter thick, black anodized front panel blends in with any ambience in its delightful understatement. In addition to the volume control, the panel also features input and output selection buttons, a balance control and the headphone outputs. The remote control, milled from a single metal block, controls all important parameters and offers maximum ease of use, especially when employing the new Niimbus models as high-end control centres for sophisticated hifi systems. The devices’ shapes underline the prominent motorized volume control and exudes timeless elegance. The exclusive use of high-quality components by well-trained specialists in the company's own manufacture near Lake Constance contributes to that special Niimbus – exclusive quality for exquisite tastes.

The US 5 and US 5 Pro headphone amps from Niimbus are available in early August from selected specialist retailers. The MSRPs are 4,999.00 euros for the US 5 and 5,499.00 euros for the US 5 Pro.