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Audio-Technica’s $108,000 Tube Headphone Amplifier Must be Heard at CanJam NYC 2024

Audio-Technica is introducing the NARUKAMI HPA-KG NARU Tube Headphone Amplifier and ATH-AWKG Closed-Back Dynamic Wooden Headphones at CanJam NYC 2024.

Audio-Technica NARUKAMI HPA-KG NARU Tube Headphone Amplifier

On our recent trip to Tullamore, Ireland to visit Sennheiser’s headphone division, we thought we heard the most expensive headphone system in the world, the HE-1 which are priced at $70,000 USD. However, Audio-Technica has raised the stakes with the introduction of its NARUKAMI ultra-high-end headphone system for $108,000 USD.

The Audio-Technica combo consists of the NARUKAMI HPA-KG NARU Tube Headphone Amplifier and ATH-AWKG Closed-Back Dynamic Wooden Headphones for $108,000. However, the headphones can be purchased separately for only $4,200.

Taking their name from the Japanese god of thunder, NARUKAMI products are designed to ignite elemental passions, while embodying the meticulous Japanese craftsmanship that is an Audio-Technica hallmark for the last 60 years.


Audio-Technica NARUKAMI HPA-KG NARU Tube Headphone Amplifier Angle with Cage
Audio-Technica NARUKAMI HPA-KG NARU Tube Headphone Amplifier

The front and side panels of the HPA-KG NARU tube amplifier/preamplifier are crafted from precious kurogaki wood, Japanese black persimmon wood with striking wavy black figuring that can be found nowhere else. The metal mesh covering that protects the vacuum tubes is evocative of the pattern of the flat needles of the Ayasugi tree. The top of the HPA-KG NARU tube amplifier/preamplifier is styled to reflect the appearance of a KARESANSUI or dry landscape garden, representing water flows.

Audio-Technica NARUKAMI HPA-KG NARU Tube Headphone Amplifier Tubes Row

The HPA-KG NARU is as technologically refined as it is beautiful. The headphone amplifier/preamplifier employs four Takatsuki 300B power tubes, considered by connoisseurs to be among the finest of their type ever produced, and with ECC83S gold pin small-signal tubes. The HPA-KG NARU utilizes a dual-mono configuration and has a fully-balanced drive design, for richly detailed sound with remarkable depth and presence. It offers both balanced 4.4 mm and standard 1/4-inch headphone jacks. 

The amplifier provides an impedance selector switch to perfectly match with the widest range of headphones. No effort was spared in the quality of the internal components, which include amorphous-core silver-wire Lundahl input and output transformers to deliver the highest level of sonic clarity. In addition to its unsurpassed capabilities as a headphone amplifier, the HPA-KG NARU serves as a preamplifier, and offers balanced and single-ended inputs and outputs.

Companion ATH-AWKG NARU headphones are included with the HPA-KG NARU amplifier.

“We spent 10 years creating the HPA-KG NARU amplifier in an arduous process, working our way through 11 prototypes before settling on a design that met our high expectations,” said R&D engineer Koichi Irii. “The lifelike sound of the HPA-KG NARU is a testament to the power of our human approach.”


Audio-Technica ATH-AWKG Headphones
Audio-Technica ATH-AWKG Headphones

The ATH-AWKG headphones (SRP: US$4,200) are equally exceptional. Like the HPA-KG NARU, the headphones are handcrafted in Tokyo, Japan, from rare kurogaki wood. In addition to its distinctive appearance, the acoustic properties of the kurogaki housings contribute to the headphones’ extraordinary sound quality. The hand-applied lacquer finish brings out the wood’s natural beauty.

Audio-Technica ATH-AWKG Headphones Side
Audio-Technica ATH-AWKG Headphones

The ATH-AWKG features purpose-designed 53-mm drivers with Permendur magnetic circuitry. Each driver is equipped with a titanium flange and a 6N-OFC high-purity oxygen-free voice coil to ensure precise movement and optimum signal transfer. Audio-Technica’s exclusive D.A.D.S. Double Air Damping System provides smooth, accurate bass response. The ATH-AWKG is designed for maximum long-wearing comfort, and is supplied with an additional set of ZMF Universe Hybrid earpads for a unique alternate listening experience. The headphones are equipped with Audio-Technica’s A2DC jacks and two 9.8-foot (3.0 mm) detachable cables with 4-pin balanced and standard 1/4-inch jacks. Adding to its elegance, the ATH-AWKG comes in a presentation box with kurogaki wood accents.

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Price & Availability

  • NARUKAMI HPA-KG NARU Tube Headphone Amplifier – $108,000 USD
  • ATH-AWKG headphones – $4,200 USD

Tip: Both product will make their U.S. premiere at CanJam NYC 2024 (March 9 – 10 at the Marriott Marquis, New York).



  1. Ed Brumbaugh

    March 7, 2024 at 6:04 pm

    Thanks for the info, pretty interesting. Always interested in what’s new in the hobby. Have to say I’ll stick with my PrimaLuna EVO300 Tube integrated amp that doubles as my headphone amplifier and keep the other $103K in the bank. Thanks again, will be interested to read and see what folks think at CanJam this weekend.

  2. Vince

    March 8, 2024 at 4:58 pm

    Bull shits, tubes amps are primitive, ain’t nothing alien techs about it.

    • Ian White

      March 8, 2024 at 5:22 pm


      Have you listened to it? I’m always curious why people make pronouncements about products they have never tried.

      Having grown up in the restaurant industry and spent thousands of hours in the kitchen…I will tell you that the 20 year-old deck oven I learned how to make pizzas with kicks the crap out of alien tech being peddled today when it comes to making pies.


      Ian White

  3. David Clark

    March 11, 2024 at 5:33 pm

    $108,0000 for a headphone amp?

    That’s the stupidest thing I’ve ever heard of.

    • Ian White

      March 11, 2024 at 9:26 pm


      Do you feel the same way about amplifiers and loudspeakers?


      Ian White

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