If you've been eyeing Parasound's highly lauded P 5 preamp for a while now but just couldn't quite bring yourself to pull the trigger for fear that an upgrade was on the way, your patience has paid off. The company announced this week that its new Halo P 6 will debut at RMAF, sporting an upgraded ESS DAC, enhanced connectivity, and--much to the delight of our resident knob enthusiast Dennis Burger--an upgraded volume control that replaces the old motorized pot with an analog resistance ladder. The new P 6 will be available in black or Parasound's signature silver finish (with fancy new gold highlights) for $1,495.
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Parasound will introduce its new Halo P 6, 2.1-channel Audio Preamplifier and DAC to audio enthusiasts at the Rocky Mountain Audio Fest in Denver, October 5-7. The Parasound Halo P 6, which is now in stock to replace the five-year-old P 5, improves upon its predecessor with a premium ESS DAC, ladder-style volume control, many internal audio refinements, and subtle new gold highlights.
Like the P 5, the new Parasound Halo P 6 provides ultimate control over multiple audio source components ranging from high-end turntables to the latest high-resolution digital music sources. A 2.1-channel crossover allows a perfect interface with both stereo and subwoofer/satellite speaker systems.
For the new Halo P 6, Parasound has replaced the predecessor's venerable Burr-Brown DAC with a new ESS Sabre32 Reference DAC. It has an asynchronous USB input that supports PCM up to 384 kHz/32-bit (up from 96Khz/24-bit), and decodes Native DSD256 and DoP DSD. The coaxial and now two optical inputs accept PCM up to 192 kHz/24-bit. The upgraded USB receiver provides "plug and play" operation with Windows 10 as well as Mac OS.
The Parasound Halo P 6 also features a new Burr Brown analog resistor ladder volume control and dimmable, front-panel volume display to replace the P 5's motorized potentiometer. The resistor ladder provides greater accuracy, resolution, and it eliminates mechanical contacts in the signal path. It also allows the user to program turn-on volume and favorite volume settings, with access from the included back-lit remote control. The P 6 retains the aesthetic appeal of a rotary control with a solid aluminum, ball-bearing volume knob.
The Parasound Halo P 6 has a phono input for MM or MC with switchable 100 ohm or 47 kohm loads. On the P 6, the phono stage gain has been increased for improved performance with lower output cartridges. Full-range outputs from the phono and five other line-level sources can be directed to balanced XLR or single-ended RCA outputs. Signals can also utilize Parasound's highly-evolved analog bass management system with adjustable high-pass and low-pass crossovers for 2.1-channel speaker/subwoofer systems using either RCA or XLR connections. The P6 also offers improved Left/Right channel separation and balance tracking.
The Parasound Halo P 6 is the optimum audio interface component for both high-end audio and sophisticated custom integration applications, and it includes home-theater bypass inputs. There are front panel inputs for a portable player and for a dedicated high-current headphone amplifier. All the functions are designed to be accessible via the included remote control or by benefit of Parasound's support for standard third-party remote control protocols. There are rear-panel IR input- and loop-output jacks, 12-volt trigger output, and optional rack-mounting adapters.
The Parasound Halo P 6 2.1-channel Audio Preamplifier and DAC is now available in silver or black finishes with a suggested retail price of $1,495.
• Visit the Parsound website for additional information.
• Parasound Halo P 5 2.1-Channel Preamplifier Reviewed at HomeTheaterReview.com.
• Parasound Announces HINT 6 Integrated Amplifier at HomeTheaterReview.com.