Parasound has begun dealer shipments of its new 2.1-channel integrated amplifier and digital audio converter. The Parasound Halo Integrated Amplifier combines powerful John Curl-designed amplifier topology with an analog preamplifier and DAC making it capable of managing music sources ranging from vinyl records to the latest high-resolution DSD digital music files. The 160-watt per channel (240-watts @ 4 ohms) Halo Integrated Amplifier drives high-end loudspeakers with accuracy, using the same class A/AB circuits found in Parasound's separate power amplifiers. These capabilities are further enhanced with a home theater bypass function, 2.1-channel analog bass management, a dedicated high-current headphone amplifier, and state-of-the-art integration technologies.
Parasound has begun dealer shipments of its new 2.1-channel integrated amplifier and digital audio converter.
The Parasound Halo Integrated Amplifier uses the latest ESS Sabre32 Reference DAC to decode a wide range of digital music files via optical, coaxial, and USB inputs. The asynchronous USB 2.0 input supports PCM up to 384 kHz/32-bit, native DSD256 and DoP DSD bit streams. The coax and optical inputs accept PCM up to 192 kHz/24-bit.
"Creating the Halo Integrated amp required Parasound to virtually redefine what a modern integrated amp should be," said Richard Schram, Parasound's president and founder. "It was a given that its sound quality had to match our acclaimed Halo separates. Thus, its analog preamp stage was taken verbatim from our popular P 5. Its power amp uses the same John Curl circuit topology and high current design that has made our A 23 and A 21 power amps perennial favorites. We went to great lengths to eliminate the power supply contamination that compromises the audio quality in some of the most expensive integrated amps. Finally, newly released parts from ESS enabled us to leap ahead with an all-new DAC, allowing the Halo Integrated to provide flawless reproduction of the highest resolution digital audio."
The Parasound Halo Integrated Amplifier uses the company's classic class A/AB, DC-coupled topology with a J-FET input stage, MOSFET driver stage and high-current output stage with twelve rugged Sanken bipolar output transistors. With its oversized shielded toroid power transformer, 40,000 µF filter capacity and enormous heat sinks, the Halo Integrated has power to spare to drive high performance speakers to their fullest potential. Its adjustable low-pass and high-pass crossovers and front panel subwoofer level control allows for seamless subwoofer integration.
The Halo Integrated has a balanced XLR input and XLR L, R, and sub preamp outputs. There are five line-level inputs, record/fixed level output, and a low-noise MM/MC phono input with three loading options. Its unique home theater bypass input circuitry enables a surround sound receiver or processor to utilize the Halo Integrated's power amp to drive the left and right loudspeakers during surround sound listening, while its subwoofer bypass inputs make it possible for subwoofer(s) to operate with surround sound and stereo listening.
The Parasound Halo Integrated Amplifier is currently available in black or silver finish with a suggested USA retail price of $2,495.