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A New Mainstay for Value-conscious Audiophiles
Parasound's Halo P 5 replaces the popular and long-lived Halo P 3 stereo preamplifier. Among its many advantages over the P 3 are a high-quality DAC with coaxial, optical, and USB inputs, subwoofer outputs with analog bass management, home theater bypass, a phono stage with moving-coil capabilities, and a precision, motorized volume control.
How good does the P 5 sound? "It's audibly superior to the P 3 in every respect," notes the founder and president of Parasound, Richard Schram. Considering the superb audio performance of the P 3, that makes the new P 5 extremely special.
"For 10 years, the Halo P 3 has been a mainstay of our line for value-conscious audiophiles," reports Richard. "However, new technologies have changed the ways audiophiles connect to and enjoy their music. So, the addition of a high quality DAC was an obvious choice for the P 5. There has also been a resurgence in turntables, so we upgraded the MM-only phono stage to also handle MC moving coil cartridges with a choice of load impedances."
While the P 3 has outstanding two-channel sound, many audiophiles today have 2.1-channel stereo speaker systems with robust subwoofers. The P 5 actually creates a sub channel output for 2.1-channel listening.
Adjustable Low-pass and High-pass Crossovers
Among the P 5's many benchmark features is the ease with which it allows you to integrate audiophile stereo speakers with a home theater surround system. It is probably the only audio component currently on the market that includes switchable and adjustable low-pass and high-pass crossovers. Infinitely variable rear-panel controls let you set both crossover points exactly where you want them.
The addition of an XLR balanced subwoofer output contributes to the convenience in a home theater set-up. Most people like to position their subs on the other side of the room, so a balanced output makes excellent sense. And for connection versatility, two RCA unbalanced outputs are also provided.
The Parasound Halo P 5 incorporates a very high quality state-of-the-art DAC. This 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.
Five Line-level Sources Plus a Phono Input
The Halo P 5's analog audio inputs include consist of RCA line-level stereo input, one pair of balanced XLR inputs, a phono input, and a front panel 3.5mm mini jack for portable audio players or smartphones. The 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.
Defeatable Tone Controls and Much, Much More
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 a premium Alps motorized potentiometer.
In addition to upgrades to the analog audio circuitry, the P 5 features a 0.5 watts standby power consumption to meet the new Energy Star requirements. A 12-VDC trigger circuit and a IR connection and loop-out make it easy to interface with sophisticated AV systems.
*Note: Input 5 is shared with the XLR balanced input, therefore the RCA and XLR jacks for input 5 should not be connected at the same time.
|Product Reviews Click here to review this item|
|Back from the dead.|
This single component has resurrected my OLD Theta Miles, Music Hall MMF-7, Adcom GFA 2800 and Snell C-Vs to a time Ive missed since my oldest son was born 17 years ago. Ive been listening over the last few days and Im blown away with what Im hearing. And guess what? That 17 year old is too!!! See ya later MP3!
|- Ben B, GA|
|Feature Packed and Good Sound|
I got this from Audio Advisor during the initial availability. They were kind enough to lock me in at the intro price, but even at the current price this unit is a bargain. I have ripped all my CDs to a Mac, as well as purchased some High Res files. Playing from the computer through the onboard DAC is a beautiful sounding front end. Then I can go really old school and play vinyl through the phone stage, and that sounds great too. Really good sound and absolutely best in class for its price.
|- David B, CT|