UAMP Promises High Quality Amplification In A Mobile Device


Developers Bartosz Kowalski & Joseph Chehade have announced UAMP – a tiny amplifier that’s designed to deliver high-quality amplification in a mobile package.

It’s being produced via a Kickstarter project, which is already fully funded. Here’s the official intro video:

Here’s what the developers have to say about UAMP:

Uamp is a link between your music player and your headphones. It’s a tiny amplifier which can produce the kind of premium quality audio that you expect from hi-end audio equipment used by audiophiles and sound producers.

An amplifier magnifies an audio signal which is then emitted by a loudspeaker, or in this case, your headphones. An amplifier can be built into a device, such as an iPhone, or it can be an external unit.

If you’re using a weak amplifier, as you turn the volume up the sound will become more distorted, but a good quality amplifier can produce clean, beautiful sound at the same high volume. This is the high-fidelity sound that Uamp provides.

The UAMP is available to project backers, starting at US $65. See the project site for details.

25 thoughts on “UAMP Promises High Quality Amplification In A Mobile Device

  1. This bugs me when they don’t do a comparison of sound without compensating for the gain difference.

    This just seems like cheating. They could have said here’s just the sonic difference (without the huge boost in gain). Of course, lows and highs and dynamics will sound better when louder. That’s an old trick.

    Also, they are taking the sound from the headphone out of the device, so all it is doing is EQ’ing, boosting the signal that is already ruined by the device. Don’t get me wrong. I don’t mind the sound of my players. I just wouldn’t blow $65 to make it louder when there is enough volume already. And if I want more bass, well, there’s ways to do that for free.

    If they’ve truly made a great sounding tiny amp, perhaps they could use it to make a great little amplified speaker– those have plenty of room for improvement.

    1. The purpose of using a high quality amp is not to make your signal louder, but to make it louder without introducing distortion.

      Not sure how they could practically demonstrate this, when you’re listening to YouTube audio over your computer or phone’s mainstream headphone amp.

      It sounds like they intend you to use your audio player on a low volume, minimizing distortion introduced by the built-in amp, and doing the amplification on the UAMP.

      I’d love to hear this to see if it makes any difference. The sound quality from an iPhone is pretty good to begin with, if the source material is good.

      1. There’s probably an optimal gain setting for minimal distortion & maximum resolution on an iOS or Android device. There’s probably an optimal impedance for what you plug in, as well. Even then, when I listen, I don’t hear distortion, and the distortion specs are too low for me to be bothered.

        If this device amplifies adds low end in an especially satisfying way, that could be demoed in their video without the whole QUIET BEFORE, LOUD AFTER trick.

    1. Pretty sure the E6 only works with the old 30-pin connector. The Lightning port on recent devices has no analog out like the old interface did.

  2. Will it have annoying voice warning you about turning it to loud?
    Like smartphones do now when you turn them up with headphones on

    1. It is annoying, walking along I can’t hear my music from background noise, so I’ll turn it up – and get a warning that my music is too loud – when I can’t even hear the music! I blame those Americans and all that silly litigation they do, I didn’t know smokes were bad so I demand $20m – really, you are that stupid and you want a reward for that level of stupidity. We are all imposed upon with silly warnings because one day some inbred is going to demand damages from a phone company because they liked playing EDM maxed out, and didn’t know that loud music could damage their hearing. Somehow, education, peers, parenting, society, and mass media hadn’t passed on the most basic of life lessons.

        1. Own older stuff?
          new phones, new cars, new GPS, pretty any new product has these tags in or on them.
          have you bought a simple power cord lately? has several tags on the cord becuase of the lawyers

              1. Yeah, that’s the one….with no front & side airbags, an ashtray and a crankin’ 8-track that leaves the ears bleeding.
                Holy tinnitus Batman!

        2. It isn’t anger disliking a society that caters for the lowest common denominator, that is just sense. I’d take your recommendation but I really don’t think I can physically smoke anymore than I do – which is also likely the reason I can’t tolerate a society that caters for a fool and his folly. Any person that needs a device to tell them not to play music at a volume that will damage their hearing shouldn’t be allowed such a device, at least in an unsupervised capacity

  3. It really makes no difference as ppl don’t have high end headphones. Only thing it does it makes sound louder not better by any means.

    1. oh they dont? how did you come to that conclusion then? there is a garbage island somewhere where all those hd650, k712 , t-90 are hidden but marked up sales numbers?

  4. i never understood what is the point to Amp analogue signal which came from D/A
    How could it be better the sound of my cheap PC motherboard d/a

    if amp then only from digital

    1. If there is a need to match impedance you need an amp. That being said; I don’t know of any headphone that one would wear outside that wont be powered correctly by a smartphone/discman etc.

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