Parasound has turned its most-affordable preamplifier and DAC design into its most-affordable integrated amplifier and DAC with the addition of a 110-watt per channel power amplifier stage in t he NewClassic 200 Integrated Amplifier and DAC.
The NewClassic 200 has all the same preamplifier features as the NewClassic 200 Pre, plus the ability to drive high quality loudspeakers without buying a separate power amplifier. Like the 200 Pre, the 200 Integrated includes analog bass management for optimal performance with compact satellite speakers and a powered subwoofer.
The amplifier stage is the latest design from the renowned Danish company Pascal. Pascal's expertise in class D engineering, says the company, allows Parasound to cram a hefty 110 watts/channel RMS 8 ohms into the very slim 1U chassis. Parasound ensures signal integrity by avoiding typical analog-to-digital conversion for volume control and special functions such as bass management, high pass and low pass crossovers.
"Integrated amplifiers with a DAC have replaced the venerable stereo receiver as the entry-level system anchor for serious music lovers," says Richard Schram, President and CEO of Parasound. "The NewClassic 200 Integrated gives budget-minded audiophiles an affordable, sensible pathway to a higher-end system. For just $300 above the cost of the preamp-only version customers will have a system with great power amplification and outstanding preamp features. The inclusion of preamp outputs allows for the flexibility of adding a separate power amp in the future."
The 200 Pre and 200 Integrated include an MM/MC phono stage, two RCA line-level inputs, digital inputs for USB, coax, and optical sources. There is a home theatre bypass for L, R, and two subs, plus a front-panel aux line-level input with an automatic 12 dB gain increase to improve sound quality for portable devices.
These NewClassic products have inherited features developed for Parasound's premium Halo product family. The 200 Integrated's and 200 Preamp's Home Theater Bypass function similarly with an adjustable 40-140 Hz high-pass crossovers for the L and R outputs, plus they generate full range and <80Hz sub outputs. Burr-Brown DACs were chosen for their musicality and reputation.
Additional convenience and custom installation features include presets for both turn-on volume and favorite volume, a bi-directional RS232 serial port equipped with Control4 drivers, rear panel IR repeater input, and a 12V trigger output. Input level offset (source level matching) ensures that sources with varying output voltages will play at the same level. The dimmable front panel LCD plus a built-in library of 28 words makes it simple to name each input for the source device to which it is connected. The back-lit remote control includes adjustments for L-R balance, bass and treble adjust, subwoofer on-off, and remote control of subwoofer level. The Bypass input enables a direct connection to the amplifier stage to facilitate integration with surround sound systems or for connecting a streaming device with its own volume control such as the Sonos Connect.
The Parasound NewClassic 200 Pre and NewClassic 200 will sell in Canada for target prices of about $1,259 and $1,699, respectively, though there's no confirmed availability date for Canada just yet. Parasound products are available in Canada through Toronto-based Gemsen.