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Parasound Halo P 5 Stereo Preamplifier

A 2.1-channel audio preamplifier with DAC, MM/MC phono, balanced XLRs, analog bass management, and home theater bypass

Parasound has recently released a new 2.1-channel audio preamplifier to its high-end Halo product family. The new Parasound Halo P 5, which replaces the popular and long-lived Halo P 3 stereo preamplifier, adds a high-quality DAC (digital-to-analog converter) with coaxial, optical, and USB inputs, subwoofer outputs with analog bass management, home theater bypass, moving-coil capabilities to the phono stage, and a precision, motorized volume control.

“For 10 years, the Halo P 3 has been a mainstay of our line for value-conscious audiophiles,” said Richard Schram, the founder and president of Parasound. “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 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 the 2.1 listening. The P 5 also makes it easy to integrate audiophile stereo speakers with a home theater surround system. The addition of a balanced XLR subwoofer output and variable low frequency and high frequency crossovers makes the Halo P 5 uniquely capable in these configurations.”

The Parasound Halo P 5’s state-of-the-art 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.

Parasound Halo P5 Stereo Preamplifier Back

The Halo P 5 inputs include one pair of balanced XLR, phono, five RCA line-level stereo inputs and a front panel 3.5mm mini jack for portable MP3 players or smartphones. Its 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.

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.

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In addition to upgrades to the analog audio circuitry, the P 5 features a 0.5 watt 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.

Price and Availability
The Parasound Halo P 5 audio preamplifier is available now in both black and the traditional Halo silver finish for $950.

Features

  • Very high quality DAC with Coax, Optical and USB inputs
  • Improved sound, specifications and versatility
  • Home theater bypass function for integration with a surround sound system
  • Analog bass management
  • Creates an independent sub channel to accompany L and R channels
  • Subwoofer output with front panel level control
  • RCA and XLR subwoofer outputs
  • Variable high pass and low pass crossovers
  • Crossovers can be switched off for full range L, R and Sub output
  • Phono stage compatible with MM, MC-100 ohm, MC-47 kohm cartridges
  • Front panel Aux input with additional 12dB gain stage (compensates for low output voltage of portable MP3 players and smartphones
  • 65 watt power supply
  • 0.5w standby power consumption meets Energy Star requirements
  • Alps motorized potentiometer instead of an IC for volume control
  • Available in both silver and black
  • 5 RCA line level inputs
  • 1 XLR balanced input (parallels Input 5 RCA jacks)
  • Balanced XLR and RCA left and right outputs
  • Bass & treble controls with defeat switch (Tone on-off from remote or front panel)
  • Headphone jack with 10 ohm output impedance
  • Rear panel IR input and loop output jacks
  • 12v output trigger
  • Automatic turn on with 12V trigger or AC power
  • Fixed level record output
  • Headphone jack automatically mutes the L, R, Sub out jacks
  • Bass & treble tone controls with defeat button
  • Balance control
  • Remote handset includes tone on/off button
  • Gold-plated RCA jacks
  • Rack mounting adapter available
  • Parasound 5 year parts, 5 years labor warranty (For USA purchases only)

Specifications

Frequency Response
10 Hz – 100 kHz, +0/-3 dBTotal Harmonic Distortion
< 0.01 %

Crosstalk
> 70 dB at 20 kHz

Input Sensitivity
300 mv: 1 Volt Out
Total Gain: 10 dB
Maximum Output: 7 Volts

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Input Impedance 
Unbalanced: 24 kohm
Balanced: 100 kohm per leg

Output Impedance
Unbalanced: 100 ohm
Balanced: 470 ohm per leg

S/N Ratio – Line Inputs 1-5
> 108 dB, input shorted, IHF A-weighted
> 88 dB, input shorted, unweighted

S/N Ratio – DAC Inputs
> 108 dB, input shorted, IHF A-weighted
> 90 dB, input shorted, unweighted

S/N Ratio – Phono Inputs
MM > 80 dB, input shorted, IHF A-weighted
MM > 70 dB, input shorted, unweighted
MC > 67 dB, input shorted, IHF A-weighted
MC > 55 dB, input shorted, unweighted

DC Trigger Requirements
+9 Vdc to +12 Vdc, 2 mA

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XLR Pin Identification
1 = Ground (Shield)
2 = Positive
3 = Negative (Return)

Dimensions
Width: 17-1/4″ (437 mm)
Depth: 13-3/4″ (350 mm)
Height, with feet: 4-1/8″ (105 mm)
Height, without feet: 3-1/2″ (89 mm)

Net Weight 
14 lb. (6.3 kg)

Shipping Weight
21 lb. (9.5 kg)

Power Requirement
Standby: 0.5 Watts
Power On: 20 Watts
100-250 Volts, 50-60 Hz (Automatic)

parasound halo p Reviews

From Critics Around the Web

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