Parasound has added a new 2.1-channel audio preamplifier to its high-end 'Halo' product family. The new Parasound Halo P 5, which replaces the Halo P 3 stereo preamplifier, adds a high-quality DAC with coaxial, optical, and USB inputs, subwoofer outputs with analog bass management, home theater bypass, moving-coil capabilities to the phono stage, and a precision, motorized volume control.
The Parasound Halo P 5's DAC can process a wide range of digital sources with its coaxial and optical inputs accepting up to 192 kHz rates, and the USB input accepting up to 96 kHz.
The Halo P 5 inputs include one pair of balanced XLR, phono, five RCA line-level stereo inputs and a front panel 3.5mm mini jack for portable MP3 players or smartphones. Its line outputs are balanced XLR and unbalanced RCA, plus a choice of balanced or unbalanced subwoofer outputs. The main and subwoofer outputs can be run full range or placed under the careful regulation of variable frequency analog high-pass and low pass crossovers.
The phono input is compatible with all moving magnet cartridges, and virtually all moving coil cartridges, with a 100 ohm/47k ohm switch to select the appropriate load impedance matching.
The front panel has a headphone jack, controls for source selection, level, bass, treble, tone defeat, balance, and subwoofer level. There is an auxiliary input with an additional 12-dB gain stage to compensate for typically low output of portable devices. An included remote control duplicates these functions. The IC volume control of the P 3 has been replaced with an Alps motorized potentiometer.
In addition to upgrades to the analog audio circuitry, the P 5 features a 0.5 watt standby power consumption to meet the new Energy Star requirements. A 12-VDC trigger circuit and an IR connection and loop-out make it easy to interface with sophisticated AV systems.
The Parasound Halo P 5 audio preamplifier is available in both black and the traditional Halo silver finish. It is available now for $950.