Note: This article is based upon the Singxer SA-1 amp review made by Zeos on his YouTube channel and is printed here in partnership with Z Reviews. The review was originally posted on March 6th, 2021. Edits have been made for clarity and length.
Zeos was basically stunned when he heard the Singxer SA-1 amplifier. “Like, I don’t want to listen on any other amplifier right now," he said of the fully balanced, Class-A amp. “I’m gonna spend two days with this amplifier just rubbing it down with...oils.”
Watch the video below or scroll on for a recap.
In a glowing review titled "Class-AA⭐️AAAAAAA⭐️AAH MA GOD THIS AMP IS AMAZING!" Zeos unemotionally assesses the attributes of Singxer's debut amp.
He opens the review with a discussion about the value difference between DACs and amps, claiming that DACs don't make an appreciable difference on sonic characteristics past a certain threshold of quality. Amps, on the other hand, make a more obvious difference.
"And as someone who owns all the headphones," he says, genuflecting before his shrine to audiophilia, “when it comes to, like, [spicing] things up a bit, [amps are] how you do it.”
Zeos tests the amp with a gamut of IEMs and headphones, from the distinguished (Fostex TH-909) to the dinky (Koss KPH30iK). Here's a quick rundown of his assessments.
- Fostex TH-909: “These sound amazing. This is the best solid state thing they’ve ever been plugged into.”
- Sennheiser HD600s: “I put this thing on low gain, and it makes it so that I need to get this thing nearly cranked for [the HD600s]. I can switch to high gain…[but] on low gain [it’s better]."
- Grado Hemp: “Oh my god I love these headphones. Like this combo…is end-all audiophilia for me. That’s it….This whole thing is just astonishing.”
- HarmonicDyne Zeus: “You...need [the SA-1] on these. It’s just that everything sounds better on it.”
- Koss KPH30iK: “Wow! Wow…What even is my job?!”
- Tin HiFi P2: "If you have Tin P2s you need to buy a Singxer.”
The Singxer's less-obvious features aren't lost on Z, who praises the lack of volume differentials between XLR and RCA when switching back and forth between inputs. “What usually happens is you have higher voltage coming through the XLRs, so when you flip to the XLR versus the RCA, the XLR is louder. Not on the Singxer. They’ve internally balanced it so that it expects it, and there’s no appreciable volume change at all when you go from XLR to RCA.”
In comparison to other amps, the SA-1 ranks at the very top, seeming to best even the Liquid Gold X and Rebelamp. “Could this replace both of those?” he ponders.
Ultimately, Z concludes that everyone should own three types of amps. “Just three," he says. "You need a very linear, straightforward amplifier: the [TOPPING] A90…And then you need a tube amp: DarkVoice [336SE]….But then you need another solid state…because there are two tiers of solid state amp…[There’s] linear....and then fun Class-A….And this thing,” he says, pointing to the Singxer SA-1, “is the king of fun Class-A….this [is the] King...on top of the pile…[with the] A90 on this side….and whatever....tube amp you want….Those are the three things you need.”
But no piece of equipment is perfect, and Zeos airs complaints about aspects of the unit's UI, including "the fact that you have to go past the preamp to the headphone amp" being "a little annoying."But the half hour video is overwhelmingly devoted to praise, as Zeos rhapsodizes the Singxer SA-1 in characteristic Zeosy ways.
- “Oh god! Oh god!”
- “Like, I don’t want to listen on any other amplifier right now.”
- “Oh my god. I can’t. I can’t. It’s so good.”
- “I just want to listen to all my headphones again. That’s it. I just want to listen to all my....headphones again.”
- “Bravo, Singxer.”
- “I’m gonna spend two days with this amplifier just rubbing it down with.... oils.”
“…I just wanna listen [to the SA-1]. Like, I actually had to stop, take it upstairs, and put it on the table, because I was like ‘No no no, I got other things to do.’”
In conclusion, Zeos gives the Singxer SA-1 “a shining....glowing, glowing review."
"Go buy one."