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Parasound’s Richard Schram Passes the Torch

As of December 8, 2022, Parasound is in new hands. Find out the reason why and what the future may hold.

Parasound's Richard Schram (left) sells company to David Sheriff (right)

After 41 years, Parasound founder and owner, Richard Schram has decided to retire and has sold the company to David Sheriff for undisclosed terms (purchase price has not been disclosed). 

The new owner, David Sheriff (who is now in control of the company as of December, 8th 2022) has a 30-year career in running manufacturing and distribution companies as well as being a systems consultant. Since 2000, he has guided over 500 U.S. manufacturers by streamlining processes, reducing risk in the supply chain, and substantially reducing time to market. However, David Sheriff doesn’t seem to have a background in amplifiers or high-end audio. 

Under Richard Schram’s leadership, Parasound has had the mission to provide high-end audio products to both consumers and professionals at reasonable prices with the design expertise of John Curl

Parasound has several product lines divided as follows:

Halo 

Halo is Parasound’s premier product line, which includes select power and integrated amplifiers, and a phono preamp with uncompromising performance. 

Tip: Read our report and review of the Parasound Halo HINT 6 Integrated amplifier.

ZoneMaster

This relatively new product line features high-performance amplifiers for custom installation. ZoneMaster amps combine Parasound Class AB amplifier sound quality with Class D power modules. Every model can handle impedance loads as low as two ohms, with bridged power up to 200 watts.

Parasound ZoneMaster 2 Front and Rear

Top: Read our report on the Zone Master Product line.

Z Custom

This product line consists of ultra-compact components (stereo amplifier, preamp, and phono preamp custom installations where space is limited but high performance is desired, including desktop setups. 

Parasound Zphono

Tip: Read our report on the Zphono XRM Phono Preamp.

New Classic

The product line features a fresh interpretation of classic company designs that have earned top reviews and customer satisfaction for over 25 years. This is Parasound’s “best bang for the buck” category.

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Parasound NewClassic 200 Pre Front and Back

Tip: Read our report on the NewClassic 200 Preamp.

One thing about Parasound is that although they periodically introduce new models, those models have a tendency to stay in their product line-up for several years as they are designed from the outset to provide the features and performance that remain constant – They don’t go into the cost of developing, manufacturing, and marketing a product just for a short one-year shelf life to keep up with popular trends. 

Buying a Parasound product is an investment that delivers for years. It is hoped that under its new leadership, that will continue.

Parting words from Richard Schram: “When I look at all we have accomplished at Parasound over four decades,…I am proud that we have stayed true to our mission statement, Integrity Endures, and our day-to-day goal of providing affordable high-fidelity sound to the critical listener. 

I am grateful for the dedication of current and former staff, plus the magic touch of our legendary circuit designer, John Curl, which made all this possible…Less outwardly visible is our continuing commitment to superb pre-and post-sale support for dealers and customers alike as well as our excellent customer service and competent in-house product repair. 

More common are users who’ve been using the same Parasound amp for 10 or 20 years without a glitch. I’m also proud that our products have been chosen by notable recording engineers as reference components in the production of some legendary movies and music recordings…I am excited that David’s vision for Parasound is aligned with Integrity Endures – and probably what I’d be doing if I weren’t ready to retire. David is a quick study. I am impressed with his plans to strengthen our business model and to take it beyond its current boundaries…relegating Parasound as a mere trophy logo under one of the audio conglomerates was never an option…”   

From incoming owner David Sheriff:  “Parasound’s legacy of rock-solid build quality, classic design, exquisite sonic performance, and great bang-for-the-buck made this an opportunity that was too good to pass up…Their achievements align with my supply chain and sales-channel experience as we expand production capabilities and grow into new markets. 

…Going forward, I look to continue the company’s outstanding legacy in design, product quality, and customer service. Parasound already dominates on price and quality, so we’ll be focusing on delivery capabilities not just in the US, but worldwide. We will invest in our partner network and social media platforms to make sure fans (and future fans) can get the information they need to understand Parasound is the right fit for them.”

It will be interesting to see what direction Parasound will take under its new leadership.

To get some sense of the immediate direction Parasound is taking, we posited two questions to Parasound, and, after discussion with David Sheriff and Phil Jackson, Parasound’s long-time director of sales, provided us with answers that appear to be reassuring:

Question #1: Are there any changes existing customers need to worry about (warranty, service, upgrades)?

There are no immediate plans for any changes to this segment of our business other than sharpening it up even more so we provide even better, faster service. As an aside, we typically do not and have not offered product upgrade services given the long expected lifespan of our products. Every Parasound product is engineered for long life“.

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Question #2: Will John Curl still design Parasound products? How does the buyout affect his involvement?

Yes, John Curl is expected to continue his work with Parasound helping us to design even more great products in the future. He has already discussed a few opportunities“.

3 Comments

3 Comments

  1. BENJAMIN THOMAS

    December 24, 2022 at 1:41 pm

    Please stay true to the products I LOVE your products Thank you

    • Ian White

      December 25, 2022 at 3:47 pm

      Ben,

      I suspect that they will because their customer base will move on if the products decrease in quality and become more expensive.

      Ian White

  2. Mark

    January 12, 2023 at 10:17 pm

    I just heard that Phil Jackson is no longer with the company. Why?

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