POWER AMPLIFIER REVIEWS

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uavGary Altunian Posted: Sep 22, 2008 0 comments
A power amplifier is the last electronic component in the audio chain—well, next-to-last if you count the speakers—and it has several important tasks. It must amplify a very small audio signal without changing the signal's characteristics, it must precisely control each speaker in the system, and it must instantaneously deliver adequate voltage and current to each speaker on demand. As such, the power amp is where the rubber meets the road.
Posted: Sep 07, 2006 0 comments

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Posted: Sep 07, 2006 0 comments

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Thomas J. Norton Posted: Feb 05, 2006 0 comments

Power amps get little respect in the home theater world. They're the heavy, black (or silver) boxes that sit somewhere in the dark, serving your speakers with a generous supply of power.

uavGary Altunian Posted: Oct 17, 2008 0 comments
I love big, beefy power amplifiers for the same reason I enjoy high-performance automobiles. An economy car will get me to my destination, but it's just not as much fun.
Barry Willis Posted: Nov 30, 2003 0 comments

In my student days, I coped with perpetual financial shortfalls in part by moving furniture. After a weekend of toting hide-a-beds and refrigerators to fifth-floor walkups, I would imagine a perfect world in which everything was designed to work with everything else. Not a world of bureaucratic regimentation, but one in which, by common agreement, every sofa would fit into every elevator and every table would slip through every open door.

Kris Deering Posted: May 31, 2012 3 comments

Halo P 7 Multichannel Preamplifier
Performance
Features
Ergonomics
Value
 
A 51 Multichannel Amplifier
Performance
Features
Ergonomics
Value
 
JC 1 Single-Channel Amplifier
Performance
Features
Ergonomics
Value
Price: P 7: $2,000, A 51: $4,500, JC 1: $4,500 At A Glance: Analog-audio-only preamp supports up to seven channels • Flexible hookup options • Halo amps deliver staggering performance

One of the few lessons that was ingrained into me during my time in the Navy was, “Keep it simple.” I admit it wasn’t phrased quite so politically correctly, but the point is still the same. It’s a motto I apply to just about everything I do in my daily life, and when I received the Parasound Halo P 7 multichannel preamplifier ($2,000) for review, it appeared that Parasound sticks to the same philosophy. The strictly analog preamp shrugs off digitaldecoding duties to your source components, shunning any dirty digital processing while providing a high-end, multichannel, analog preamp stage to feed into your amps. With the right front-end source components, this makes for a spectacular two-channel and multichannel listening experience.

Chris Lewis Posted: Aug 30, 2005 Published: Aug 31, 2005 0 comments
Performance and value never go out of style.

My curiosity was naturally piqued a few years ago when I heard that Parasound was going upscale with their look. This was a company that had become virtually synonymous with performance plus value, facilitated somewhat by forgoing aesthetic flair, and I wondered where the decision to go uptown with the finish in the Halo line would lead. The first good sign was the Halos' higher price tags. It costs a lot more to make boxes look that good, and this told me that they weren't taking resources away from performance to do so. What ultimately satisfied my curiosity, though, was how good the Halo models sounded. Yet, there are still those who want Parasound performance, have less to spend, and don't mind—or maybe even appreciate—Parasound's rugged, utilitarian old style. The New Classic line is exactly what they're looking for.

Ultimate AV Staff Posted: Jul 10, 2006 0 comments

<UL CLASS="square">
<LI>Price: $2,500</LI>
<LI>Channels/Power: Five channels; 250-Watts into 8 ohms/385-Watts into 4 ohms </LI>
<LI>Inputs: Single-ended</LI>
</UL>
<IMG SRC="/images/archivesart/706parasound5250.jpg" WIDTH=450 HEIGHT=245 BORDER=0>

Mark Fleischmann Posted: Mar 22, 2007 Published: Feb 22, 2007 0 comments
Multinational speakers meet American amps.

On the battlefield of speaker design, I am the triage nurse. I walk into speaker demo rooms at trade shows, my badge sometimes inadvertently turned inward, listen for a moment, and quietly mutter to myself, "This one's a keeper," or, "He's dead, Jim." Or occasionally just, "Hmmm," because good speakers may sound iffy under bad conditions, and I respect the potential buried within an ambiguous first take. But, if my instincts tell me to pursue a review, I whip out a business card and start making arrangements on the spot.

Robert Deutsch Posted: Mar 21, 2004 0 comments

For a country with a population of fewer than 6 million, Denmark has an amazingly high profile when it comes to manufacturers of audio and home theater products. Bang & Olufsen, Dynaudio, Vifa, Peerless, Jamo, Gryphon, Ortofon, Thule, Dali, TacT&mdash;the list goes on and on. According to the folks at US importer Sumiko, Primare (pronounced "prime-AIR") has been around since the 1980s, and their products combine outstanding industrial design with an emphasis on sound quality. In the late '90s, the Primare team was joined by Michael Bladelius, well-known for his analog and digital design work for Threshold, Class&#233;, and Pass Labs. Primare products are now manufactured in Sweden, while the head office and design center remain in Denmark.

Steven Stone Posted: Apr 02, 2006 0 comments

The concept of "investing" in a rapidly depreciating commodity strikes me as patently stupid. Just look at EBay and Audiomart. They are chockablock full of yesterday's stratospherically priced audio components now available for ten cents on the dollar. I believe the best values in audio or video components come from companies that refine bleeding-edge, hyper-expensive technology into attractively priced products.

Daniel Kumin Posted: Mar 25, 2013 0 comments

Emotiva. The name sounds like the latest cure-all marketed by Big Pharma on the evening news programs. (Remember “restless leg?”) It is, in fact the consumer-audio brand of Tennessee’s Jade Designs. And Jade Designs, in turn, is the direct-to-consumer brand founded by a longtime veteran of the rough-and-tumble electronics OEM (original equipment manufacturing) world.

Brent Butterworth Posted: Aug 05, 2013 0 comments

"You test … amplifiers?" the lovely brunette MBA said to me from across the couch in the lobby of a hipster L.A. hotel. Sadly, my reply - "There are people who care about this stuff!" - didn't convince her of the value of my work. On some level, though, I'm in sympathy with her sentiment. While I do, on occasion, test amplifiers, I'm really a speaker and headphone reviewer.

Daniel Kumin Posted: Apr 10, 2012 0 comments

I am of the school that believes that more power is always better than less power. That school also professes that amplifiers, while operating within their linear abilities (a big “if”), are not generally distinct in their sonics.

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