June
2019

Country of Origin

USA

intimo

Reviewer: Srajan Ebaen
Financial interests: click here
Sources: Retina 5K 27" iMac (4GHz quad-core with Turbo boost, 32GB RAM, 3TB FusionDrive, OSX Yosemite. iTunes 14.4), PureMusic 3.02, Audirvana 3, Qobuz Hifi, Tidal Hifi, COS Engineering D1, Denafrips Terminator, Soundaware D300Ref as USB bridge/SD transport, Jay's Audio CDT2 MkII & DAC2-SE
Preamplifier: Nagra Classic, Wyred4Sound STP-SE Stage II, COS Engineering D1, Vinnie Rossi LIO (AVT module)
Power & integrated amplifiers: Pass Labs XA30.8; FirstWatt SIT1, SIT3, F5, F6, F7; Goldmund/Job 225; Wyred4Sound mINT; Nord Acoustics NC500 monos; LinnenberG Audio Liszt monos; Bakoon AMP-13R; Crayon Audio CFA-1.2; Grandinote Shinai [on review]; Gold Note PA-1175 MkII x 2 [on review]
Loudspeakers: Audio Physic Codex; Kroma Audio Mimí; Cube Audio Nenuphar; Albedo Audio Aptica; EnigmAcoustics Mythology 1; Boenicke Audio W5se; Zu Audio Druid V, VI & Submission; German Physiks HRS-120; Eversound Essence
Cables: Complete loom of Allnic Audio ZL 3000 & 5000; Zu Event; KingRex uArt double-header USB cables; Tombo Trøn S/PDIF; van den Hul AES/EBU; AudioQuest Diamond glass-fibre Toslink; Black Cat Cable redlevel Lupo; Ocellia OCC Silver
Power delivery: Vibex Granada/Alhambra on all source components, Vibex One 11R on amps/sub
Equipment rack: Artesania Audio Exoteryc double-wide 3-tier with optional glass shelves, Exoteryc Krion and glass amp stands
Sundry accessories: Acoustic System resonators
Room: 4 x 6m with high gabled beam ceiling opening into 4 x 8m kitchen and 5 x 8m living room, hence no wall behind the listening chairs
Review component retail: $1'499 single-ended

íntimo. Headphones. Intimate. Up close and personal. Purely private.

Today's DAC/headfi deck from California's EJ Sarmento first teased at RMAF 2015. But it's still named just perfectly in that Portuguese spelling. To avoid failed fumbles beneath the sheets, there's a three-stage gain switch, balance control and 3-band EQ. If your headphones can't get it on with íntimo, they need to see the doc. To avoid being left behind by high sample rates, there's a 32-bit 384kHz PCM and DSD128 chip from ESS Sabre. Because they're sexy, control buttons for phase, tone, power, down and up are capacitive touch.

To hit the target even in pitch-black darkness, there's a large alphanumeric display. Because preferences vary, there are two coax, two optical and one USB input. To not sell you something you won't do, there are single-ended or fully balanced circuit versions. In either case, it's anodized aluminium and a class A operation, hence exposed heat sinks on the right cheek.

Copper, stainless steel or bronze finishing.

In short, it's a Wyred4Sound mINT exclusively for earspeakers, with redone metal work, no class D in sight and remote control included.

… more to come in July …