CMA Audio Niimbus US5 and US5 Pro headphone amplifiers
Since purchasing Lake People last April, CMA Audio has adopted many of the circuitry approaches at Niimbus borrowed from Violectric, the brand that CMA took over with Lake People. The Niimbus US 5 and US 5 Pro headphone amplifiers feature a fully balanced dual mono design with a 50V operating supply from two 50,000uF toroidal transformers for high output power.
The company called both flagship models reference – they are ready to work with almost any type of headphones. For this, the pre-amplification adjustment is provided in the range from -18 to +24 dB. Low output impedance guarantees a high attenuation factor.
In balanced connection, both Niimbus models operate in push-pull mode. One balanced and two unbalanced stereo inputs, balanced and unbalanced line outputs will allow amplifiers to work as pre-outputs – the line outputs can be set to either fixed or variable mode.
The differences between the amplifiers are that the US 5 used a motorized potentiometer, while the US 5 Pro uses a volume control connected to a microcomputer, which in turn controls a network of fixed resistors through wear-free reed relays. This control has 256 discrete volume levels.
Both models received almost identical metal cases with bezels made of 10mm anodized aluminum. Their controls are complemented by remote controls in the same style – from a single piece of metal.
The Niimbus US5 and US5 Pro headphone amplifiers are manufactured in southern Germany and will go on sale in early August. European prices are €5,000 for the US5 and €5,500 for the US5 Pro.