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DAC to Headphones?

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I was wondering if someone could help me with a question regarding powering headphones from a DAC (which is capable of functioning as a preamp).


My girlfriend and I want to listen to headphones from the same source, but all the components of my setup only allow for a single active output with the exception of the Alpha DAC (has both balanced and unbalanced outputs, which I assume are both simultaneously active/enabled). The Alpha DAC also functions as a preamp, which is why I was hoping this might be a possibility.


I'm interested in going directly from the Alpha to headphones via the RCA-outs. The Alpha manual says:

"Unbalanced Analog Output Level

3.25 Vrms maximum into ? 5k? load 1.6 Vrms or lower recommended"


The headphones are Grado SR225i, which have an impedance of 38ohms.


If I use the ART HeadTAP in between the Alpha and Grados, will the Alpha be safe from any potential damage? The HeadTAP is ordinarily used to connect a speaker power amp to headphones, but I'm thinking I could use it to also protect a preamp. Thanks for any insight.



Passive Headphone Amplifier with Input for PA or Monitor Amplifier and Output for Connecting Headphones


The HeadTAP is a passive device with an input to connect the PA or monitor amplifier and an output to connect the headphones. A volume control regulates the headphone level and internal resistors keep the unit’s impedance high enough to protect the headphones. It also protects the amplifier from encountering too low a load impedance while powering tap units, the speaker system or several tap units by themselves. A good tap will also work with a stereo headphone amplifier for use in recording situations when you want to add headphones for additional performers.


Wavelength WaveLink HS -> Berkeley Alpha DAC -> Audio Space Reference 2 -> Woo GES -> Stax SR007A

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