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Krell Readies Second Of Four New Components


A new stereo preamp that Krell is
shipping this month is the second of four audio components
that the company is launching in 2012.

The stereo preamp is the Phantom III, which is the
company’s first stereo
preamp with digital inputs
when an optional input
module is added. The
preamp, which is also
the company’s first stereo
preamp with headphone
output, retails for
a suggested $5,500
without the digital-input
module and $7,000 with
the module.

The input module enables Internet streaming devices,
PCs and other digital sources to take advantage
of the preamp’s better DACs, said Bill McKiegan,

The company’s first product of the year was a new
SACD player. The third new product will be a 2×275-
watt integrated amp, which is targeted to ship in August
to join a 2×150-watt model.

The fourth product, a preamp surround processor
at a suggested $5,000, will bring the company into a
price point that it hasn’t offered in surround processors
in five or six years, McKiegan said. It’s targeted to ship
in November and will join a current $10,000 model.

The newest Krell component, which ships this month,
is the Phantom III stereo preamp, whose optional module
adds AES/EBU, coaxial, and optical digital inputs.
The Phantom III’s design philosophy is the same as the
flagship Phantom preamplifier, including dual monaural
design in which the left and right channel gets its own
power supply and circuit boards, the company said. It
likewise features no-negative-feedback design.

The preamp’s headphone circuitry is identical to
the main circuitry to
provide the same performance
for speaker
playback and for private
listening, the
company said.

The Phantom III is
available in Krell’s diamond-
cut silver or a
black finish.

The next new product,
targeted for August shipment, is the S-550i integrated
amp, a 2×275-watt $5,500-suggested model
that will join the 2×150-watt $2,500 S-300i integrated
amp. Like the previous model, it connects to an iPod/
iPhone dock.

At September’s CEDIA Expo, Krell will show its
fourth product of the year, a new preamp surround processor
that will be the company’s first component with
Internet radio streaming and ability to be controlled
from an iPhone or iPad.

The $5,000 processor, called the Foundation, is targeted
to ship in November and will return the company
to a preamp/processor price point that the company
hasn’t offered in five to six years, McKiegan said.

Among other things, the processor will feature Ethernet
port for networking, 10 HDMI 1.4a inputs and
two 1.4a outputs. The device uses vTuner software to
access thousands of Internet radio stations.