REVIEW: PRESONUS HP 4


You’ve just set up your digital recording studio and you’re with a couple of other musicans, all ready to record. Suddenly you realize there are not enough headphone jacks for everyone. This is a situation that is initially, easily overlooked.

The primary purpose of the Presonus HP-4 is to provide multiple headphone jacks where originally there is insufficient supply. In the recording studio, multiple headphones are a must and a headphone amplifier such as the HP-4 will allow up to 4 people to listen simultaneously. One of the neat things about he HP-4 is the ability to daisy chain multiple units together if more than 4 headphone sets are required. The HP-4 is quiet, has a crisp clear sound and plenty of volume if needed, for headroom purposes.

The HP-4 is an active device and obtains its power by plugging it into the wall with the included AC adapter. A red LED is illuminated when the device is plugged in and obtaining power. When the MONO button on the front panel is pushed in, each input will be summed together on each output producing a MONO signal which in particular situations can be a handy feature to have.

Aluminum Knobs on the front panel of the cast aluminum HP-4 are spaced evenly enough to allow average / large sized fingers, comfortable manipulation space and the unit does not generate any significant amount of unwanted heat when operational.

The rear panel of the HP-4 has separate Left and Right IN-puts’ as opposed to a single TRS input. In order to connect the HP-4 from a stereo headphone output jack, it will be necessary to obtain a standard ‘INSERT cable’ (Y-cable – single TRS 1?4 inch jack on one end and two TS 1?4 inch jacks on the other) which can be purchased at any pro-music store. The pair of Monitor OUTputs will provide a way to output the signal directly to a pair of powered studio monitors. The audio signals to the speakers can be defeated using the conveniently situated MUTE switch that is located on the front panel of this smartly designed, solidly constructed signal router.

Theoretically the HP-4 can be Rack mounted using a ‘Max Rack and Universal Rack Tray’ but a search of this accessory on the presonus website does not reveal any additional information or pricing.

It’s really a pretty simple device and while there are several others on the market that retail for much less than the HP-4, at the end of the day, the HP-4 is sensibly styled, quality built, with superior sound characteristics and will meet or exceed the professional standards of all other devices in a pro-studio environment.

Presonus, a familiar name to musicians, has a large family of recording/playback interface products designed for use by people in the
professional recording industry. For complete tech specs and additional details visit the Presonus website: http://www.presonus.com/products/Detail.aspx?ProductId=20.

HP-4 retails for around $140.00 CDN

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