Quicksilver Audio HPA

I’ve been listening to the Quicksilver Audio Headphone Amp for several months and very impressed with the performance. There is so little written about this amp and the company, not sure how many head-fi’ers have even heard of this company and amplifier. Quicksilver has zero advertising, almost zero reviewers, and no hype.

It’s a full class-A SET tube amp hand made in the USA in Stockton California. It’s price is extremely attractive at $1198 direct from the factory. Each unit is handmade in the US.

Quicksilver’s tubes used are frequently seen in other brands of headphone amps. The signal path per channel is one each EL-84 pentode driver, 12AX7 dual triode signal tube, transformer, Alps Blue velvet volume control and a capacitor. Very minimal components in the signal path to color the sound.

Easy to tube roll with plentiful new manufacture and NOS tubes to swap-out for experimenting.

The sound is simply terrific and can easily be compared to amps 2.5x the price. Drive it with a nice DAC and the sound is classic slightly holographic, slightly warm, but never bloomy or boomy. At CanJam SoCal recently trying every fantasy headphone tube amp, it’s difficult to blow this little tube amp out of the water.

This amp paired well with a wide range of headphones over extended listening sessions; ZMF Aeolus, ZMF Verite Open, HD650, and Audeze LCD-4z.

Appreciate what other thank who have listened to the Quicksilver HPA.

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There’s a great article on it if anyone wants additional info. Looks very solid…

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Fantastic review, very accurate. Thank you for sharing it.

The DAC behind the amp is key. Meaning this little amp will run at the performance level of source gear behind it. Crazy thing is the amp is only $1198 for this much capability.

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I don’t think you mentioned it but what dac did you use with it, out of curiosity?

DAC is Holo Audio Spring 3 KTE. Pretty amazing DAC and nice to have eliminated any delta-sigma filtering in the signal path convoluting the audio.

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Thanks for the thread on this HPA. I bought one earlier this year to use with ZMF Auteurs and a DCA Aeon Closed X. Tube rolled 1950 Tungsram EL84 and Gold Lion 12AX7s.
Plenty of power for these two phones. Good frequency extension top and down. Excellent soundstage.
2 thumbs up from me! Great band for the buck.

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If you look around, there are actually quite a few of us using this amp. This might be the only forum I frequent that didn’t have an active thread on it. I tell anyone who will listen how great this little amp is. I have never listened to any tube amps in the $2K+ range, but every time I consider buying something pricey, I simply listen to the Quicksilver again and find myself completely satisfied with the sound.

I have used my QHA with multiple ZMF headphones, and it seems to drive them all effortlessly. My current favorite pairing is with my Meze Elite. My favorite tube roll is 1955 Mullard EL84s and 1954 Amperex 12AX7s.

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I had a Quicksilver Headphone Amp for about 6 months a couple of years ago - it sounded great with my Utopia cans, and it is excellent value for the money. I sold it when I upgraded to an Eddie Current Studio B, but I would highly recommend the Quicksilver at that price point…

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Looking at the QS website this appears to be SE only but the input /output connections are not completely evident - seems there are RCA in and a 6.35 mm jack out is that correct?

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That is correct. It doesn’t have too many bells and whistles.

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I thought I might have been the only one. After auditioning many amps in the under $3K range, I still come back to the Quicksilver HPA. Most other companies would be charging $2200 or more.

Well said.

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It’s deliberately minimalistic and that is part of the magic. Not much else to contaminate the signal chain.

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I haven’t heard the QSHA–but I’ve known about Quicksilver and Mike Sanders for nearly 40 years. He is a very well known and respected maker of 2-channel tube amps in high end audio. I recall a budget pair of tubed monoblock amps (name escapes me) that were extremely popular in the late '80s.

He’s the real deal.

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@ckhirnigs113 recommended a QSHA to me, and I am very glad I took action on the suggestion. Excellent results on my ZMF Auteur and my DCA ACX. Great bang for the buck. Tip of my hat to Chris!

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Glad you’re still enjoying it! You even upgraded my old Blackwood Auteur, so I’m sure things are sounding great. I chickened out on the upgrade of my Ash set after getting the Meze Elite. Luckily the Quicksilver is excellent with both. I might do the upgrade at some point, but I still like the OG Auteur as a nice complement to the Elite.

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Indeed he is, I still use a pair of Quicksilver M135 Monoblocks in my 2Channel system.

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I too would be very satisfied with an OG Auteur complementing a Meze Elite! :star_struck: But have to admit I am pretty happy with the current package of hardware.

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