I am using headphone amplifier ART Headamp 4. It has four output channels (could support four independent headsets at time) but we only need two. Each channel has separate volume regulator and separate output for headphones (the input is shared). Nothing is connected to the output of the unused channels.

I used to turn the volume regulators of the unused channels to the zero position (mute), thinking this kind of switches them of. However I am not sure if this is true. Nothing is written in the user manual.

From general understanding, if we have a headphone (so low power solid state, not a high power tube amp) amplifier that we cannot turn off yet nothing is connected to the output, would it make sense to keep its volume regulator in mute position? Would it impact positively the quality of the overall sound system, the longevity of the amplifier?

  • It doesn't matter what volume the unused channels are set at. In any way. At all. Jun 6, 2015 at 16:05

2 Answers 2


It does make a difference, but not in the audio quality. In general it is a good idea to leave unused channels at their lowest amplitude setting to prevent accidentally blasting your headphones, speakers, or ears (which can happen in many different ways). In that sense, yes, it is better to turn volume regulators to mute for unused headphone amplifier channels. It's a good practice


The pots attenuate the signal. If there's nothing to receive that signal, it matters not. Like why signal you're turning right/left in a car when there's no-one to pick up the signal.

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