Essence DPA-440 Class D Amp

(3 customer reviews)

$ 1,299.00 $ 999.00

Spend Your Money on Power For Your System, Not A Big Chassis Full of Heat Sink

” …astonishing amount of finesse” John Gatski, October 2015

Fast Facts:

  • 220 watts x 2 @ 4 ohms RMS
  • Outperforms amps costing up to 5x more
  • .003% THD+N
  • Made in the USA
  • Cool Class D operation-90% Efficient
  • Available in Black or Silver
  • 3 dB Dynamic Headroom
  • 12″ W x 3.5″ H x 12.5″ D

Note: Free shipping in the USA.  We ship by USPS Priority International outside the USA, affordable and prompt service with delivery in 7-10 days

AC Voltage Select *

Front Panel Finish Option *


Audiophile speakers like electrostats and difficult to drive high performance towers perform best with ultra-clean high power amps that can handle low impedance loads. If you’ve been dreaming about hearing the uncompressed dynamic range of live concerts on Blu-ray and Hi Res Audio downloads of studio master recordings, you’re going to need more power to take you there. Remember, to hear clean un-clipped sound 3 dB louder than the amp you have now, you’ll need to double your current power output.essence dpa-440 rear panel

Now is the time increase your amp’s output power with the 90% efficient Essence DPA-440 Class D Digital Power Amp. Better sound, better economics, and an eco-friendly design for modern thinking people.

Clean Class D Power For Hi Res Audio 

Why are Class A and AB amps so expensive? The simple truth is,they convert electricity into watts with less efficiency.  The lower the efficiency, the more heat the amp produces.  The chart below vividly explains; Class A amps are 20% efficient, Class AB amps are 50% efficient.  Both designs create more heat than power to drive your speakers.  Since heat is the enemy of solid state devices, these amps must employ ways to get rid of it.

Audiophiles hate fans because they are noisy so manufacturers of Class A and AB amps are forced to use a lot of heat sink surface area to  pull the heat away from the amp.  The surface area requirement leads to a huge chassis to house the heat sinks and transformer. The cost of the materials to make the chassis to house all this heat sink is by far the biggest factor in why these amps cost so much today, its the packaging, not the transistors or circuit boards.  Class D amps are 90% efficient so they dont need as much heat sink or the big chassis to house them, leading to lower costs for consumers per watt.  Further, Class D amps now sound better than the old fashioned Class A and AB amps we grew up with, they have lower distortion and noise and handle difficult loads better, with more slam and an ease of operation as they produce prodigious output for a lot less money.

Hi Res Audio brings us all the emotion of a live performance at home as never before with uncompressed 24/96-192K Blu-ray Concerts, Pure Audio Discs, SACD/DVD-A, and Hi Res Downloads for the most unveiled sound and transparency in audio history. Class D is swiftly taking over theEssence DPA-440 v2 silver audiophile market, the only people still complaining about how they sound are the manufacturers who still make the Class A vacuum tube and Class AB solid state amps from the last century.  In a world getting hotter by the year, its really past the time to indulge in fantasies and rationalizations about which type of amp class sounds best.

With Class D you get 66% more output power for 1/3rd the price and lower your audio system’s power consumption by more than 50%, lowering your electricity bill as well.  In the chart below, note that the Class A amps use up the most electricity because they are on at full output all the time, yet 80% of that electricity is thrown away as heat.  

Comparison of Amp Classes Class A Class AB  Class D
Efficiency 20% 50% 90%
Electricity/Watts to drive a 200 watt Stereo Amp To Full Output 800 400 240

That leads us to  the Essence™ DPA-440 Class D Digital Audio Power Amp. It’s easy to find amps that can excel in one or two parameters but the DPA-440 is an amp that does everything well. With its wide open-loop bandwidth, extremely low-phase shift, almost non-existent noise, harmonic and intermodulation distortion independent of load, high current capability, low output impedance uniformly at all audible frequencies-it all adds up to incredible performance.

Modern Digital Amplification

The Essence DPA-440 uses the latest Class D topology to provide a highly efficient and nearly ideal amplifier with distortion below measurement, ultra-high damping factor, and unconditional stability with any speaker. Tight, detailed sound with amazing control and transparency delivers the best performance available.

The all-discrete driver and output stage have lower open-loop THD as well as lower idling losses, normally conflicting requirements with conventional IC driver circuitry.This is added to the DPA-440’s already amazing characteristics of load invariance and high current capability, common characteristics of great-sounding amplifiers.

Effortless Power

By using the latest generation parts and thinking, the DPA-440 offers a minimum of 220W per channel @ 4 Ohms (Essence™ Electrostatic speakers are 4 ohm) with amazing reserves of dynamic power at lower impedances. The DPA-440 is capable of up to 400 watts dynamic power per channel @ 2 ohms. It can effortlessly power any loudspeaker to live performance levels with amazing efficiency and low power consumption.

Clean and Dynamic

The performance of the entire signal path is critically dependent on the power supply; in this case a well regulated switch mode design with 90% efficiency. This allows maximum dynamic power, very high current yet with very low distortion. Secondary supplies are individually regulated and decoupled at each op amp for lowest possible noise and maximum dynamic range. The DPA-440 is protected against thermal overload and against being over-driven, which is almost impossible.

When combined with the Essence Electrostats and the HDACC Upsampling DAC Preamp, the system performance reaches the highest level of clarity and resolution attainable today, at a price that’s sure to make heads spin. The amp is our latest disruptive innovation.

Manufacturers: Essence DPA-440 Benchmark AHB2 Bel Canto Ref 150S CI Audio E∙200S NAD M22
FTC* Rated Output RMS Watts Per Channel          
4 Ω 220 170 150 400 250
8 Ω 110 100 75 200 250
IM/THD+N <.003% <.003% <.003% <.02% <.003%
Signal-to-Noise Ratio < -100 dB < -113 dB <-110 dB Not Rated <-100 dB
Peak Output Current 40 amps 18 amps Not Rated Not Rated 50 amps
Damping Factor >1000 Not Rated >1000 Not Rated >800
Frequency Response ±.2 dB 20 Hz to 25 KHz ±.023@20Hz/-.32@20KHz ± 3dB 1.5 Hz – 90 KHz @4Ω Not Rated 3Hz – 30kHz (ref. -3dB)
Input Impedance: RCA/XLR 30KΩ / 47KΩ 50KΩ / 1MΩ 100KΩ / 200KΩ 100KΩ 17 Ω / 200 Ω
Input Sensitivity 1.6v RMS 2v RMS 1.1v RMS 2.0v RMS 1.6v
Voltage Gain** 30 dB Not Rated 27 dB 26 dB 29 dB
Idle Power 9w Not Rated 9.5w 32 w 40w
Dimensions 12″ W x 3.5″ H x 12.5″ D 11″ W x 3.8″ H x 9.34″ D 8.5″ W x 3.5″ H x 12″ D 14″ w x 2.75″ H x 10″ D 17″ W x 4″ H x 15″ D
Unit Weight 18 lbs 12.5 lbs 13 lbs / 6.5Kg 8.5 lbs 19.6 lbs
Shipping Weight 21 lbs 15 lbs 16 lbs 10 lbs 23 lbs
Dynamic Headroom 3 dB Not Rated Not Rated Not Rated 3 dB
Price $999 $2,995 $2,049 $2,500 $3,000
Warranty 3 Years 1 year 2 years 5 years 2 years
*Continuous Output Power as per FTC Rule          

Additional information

Weight 21 lbs
Dimensions 12.5 × 12 × 3.75 in


FTC* Power Output RMS
4 Ω 220 Watts per channel
8 Ω 110 Watts per channel
IM/THD+N <.003%
Signal-to-Noise Ratio -100 dB
Peak Output Current 40 Amps
Damping Factor >1000
Frequency Response ±.2 dB 20 Hz to 25 KHz
Input Impedance: RCA/XLR 30KΩ / 47KΩ
Input Sensitivity 1.6v
Voltage Gain** 30 dB
Dynamic Headroom +3 dB
Dimensions 12″ (30.5cm) W x 3.5″(8.9cm) H x 12.5″(31.8cm) D
Unit Weight 18 lbs(8.2kg)
 Shipping Weight  21 lbs(9.5kg)
*Continous Output Power as per FTC Rule
**User Adjustable Gain Controls


3 reviews for Essence DPA-440 Class D Amp

  1. Thierry Langer, Maryland Oct 2015

    I totally agree with John Gatski.

    After 50 hours of listening, the amp sounds now exactly as if it would not being there. Not the enormous , “hugeissime “ sound of my late Jadis, but just a reliable tool for 1/8th of the cost. More details, more credible image, just more demanding on the quality of the records I play.. Thank you Bob Thierry Langer, Maryland Oct 2015

  2. George Deane, NY July 2015

    Yes Bob. Received it on Tuesday, hooked it to the speakers and consider the result superb. I can’t ask for anything more, except cd’s that can meet the standard of the speaker. Your insight and wisdom on audio matters are much appreciated. It’s only rare;y that I have met someone in the audio feel that can match your knowledge of audio. So thanks for everything! George Deane, NY July 2015

  3. Enrique Diaz Guzman

    “I truly consider that your work and knowledge with the DPA-440 was well worth it, I don’t know the amount of collaboration between Tom and you, but you two are a couple of geniuses. These two products, the HDACC and DPA-440, are completely amazing in sound and they really will go toe to toe with some tubes Ive heard and you’re totally right they (the tube amps) should be modern day heaters instead of amps. You certainly are a league on your own, this system that you designed is certainly top of the line…In short THANK YOU for the sound in my room, you leave me responsible for selling my older amp and preamp that I will never connect again.” Enrique Diaz Guzman, Mexico City,

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