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Parasound Amp Targets AVR Obsolescence

2/01/2011 02:08:41 PM Eastern
San Francisco - Parasound redesigned the flagship amplifier in its NewClassic series with a new front-panel design and more than 60 improvements.

The improvements include the addition of adjustable gain on each channel for compatibility with the preamp outputs of any A/V receiver, Parasound said.

 The $2,850-suggested NewClassic 5250 v.2, like its predecessor, is a THX Ultra 2-certified 5x250-watt amp. With adjustable gain controls, however, the new model is positioned as a solution for enthusiasts interested in mating a high-performance high-power amp with an A/V receiver that features all of the latest home theater technologies, the company said.

The amp is for home theater enthusiasts "who want great performance but worry about the cost of updating a new top-of-the line surround receiver every few years to keep pace with changing technology," said president Richard Schram. "A high quality and powerful amplifier will never really become obsolete."

Instead of spending $2,500 to $5,000 for a high-power surround receiver every time receiver technology changes, he explained, consumers can spend $800 to $1,200 for a lower-powered A/V receiver that offers all of the same surround decoders "and most of the same useful features," then add on the Parasound amp to improve performance.

 Like its predecessor, the new amp features discrete power transistors, dual toroid power transformers, large storage capacitors, delivery of current peak currents of 45 amps per channel, and delivery of 385 watts per channel into 4-ohm loads.

 The predecessor had fixed gain at the THX reference level, but the new model allows for independent +/- 10 dB gain adjustment for each channel relative to the THX level. As a result, the new amp can reach higher SPLs in very large rooms or when less sensitive speakers are used.
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