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#28207 - 12/19/03 12:34 PM Parasound Halo
chesseroo Offline
connoisseur

Registered: 05/13/02
Posts: 4827
Loc: western canada
Well, i haven't seen Semi around in awhile but...here it is.
I'm going to pick up the Parasound Halo A23 either tonight or tomorrow. It is being sold at a local western Canadian box store (A&B Sound) if you can believe that.
After tax the unit is about $1800cdn although i've seen prices for it at audiogon for about $800-1000usd which works out to less than $1400cdn.

In any event, they have a 30d return policy so if the audition does not go favourably, at least i won't have lost $1800 in hard earned cash. Thanks to our friends over at Hometheatrespot, i'm come across some possible issues to watch/listen for.

_________________________
"Those who preach the myths of audio are ignorant of truth."

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#28208 - 12/19/03 10:27 PM Re: Parasound Halo
x94blair3 Offline
local

Registered: 10/14/03
Posts: 257
Loc: Grand Rapids, MI
Good luck with the new equipment. That sort of thing is obviously way over my head. By the way, thanks for the link to that forum. It'll be another asset to my research.

-Nick
_________________________
My M60's make me listen
My M80's make my ears hear
Either way - I'm not deaf anymore

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#28209 - 12/19/03 11:48 PM Re: Parasound Halo
chesseroo Offline
connoisseur

Registered: 05/13/02
Posts: 4827
Loc: western canada
I will post some pics and thoughts tomorrow on the new amp.
I will cross post them at the Hometheatrespot under the Parasound forum for anyone that is interested.

Nick, i can't believe after all the kerfuffle on the 'Spot' that you didn't know about the site.
Paul runs a pretty good forum over there. I found some excellent info that helped me solve a huge problem when we first got our new Toshiba RPTV. The tweaks i've picked up from the 'Spot' have been excellent as well.
I really love looking at some of the DIY HT rooms and ideas.
_________________________
"Those who preach the myths of audio are ignorant of truth."

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#28210 - 12/20/03 01:11 AM Re: Parasound Halo
x94blair3 Offline
local

Registered: 10/14/03
Posts: 257
Loc: Grand Rapids, MI
I must have missed the contreversy. Perhaps it was before my time.

-Nick
_________________________
My M60's make me listen
My M80's make my ears hear
Either way - I'm not deaf anymore

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#28211 - 12/20/03 02:52 AM Re: Parasound Halo
curtis Offline
connoisseur

Registered: 05/28/03
Posts: 1501
Loc: Manhattan Beach, CA
if anyone cares, I have a pair of ACI Sapphires on loan to me, and when communicating with the president of ACI about amps, he wrote very highly of the Halo line.

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#28212 - 12/20/03 01:22 PM Re: Parasound Halo (short review)
chesseroo Offline
connoisseur

Registered: 05/13/02
Posts: 4827
Loc: western canada
Well i've been running the A23 all morning.
The sound is solid, although the Coda amp that i had heard before seemed to be more robust.
HOWEVER, i am not using the same preamp this time (i think the Phillips took a turn for the worse) so it could just be a change in the preamp signal since the preamp now is a very tiny intergrated Denon unit.
The plus about the Halo is that it has a signal gain switch on the back for both L/R channels such that even with the tiny Denon preamp section, i can up the gain so it performs more up to spec.
I really like the Halo features. Gain controls, ground loop lift switch, balanced or unbalanced connections, 3 auto on controls (relay switch, manual or auto signal detect).
Just great.
The aesthetics are awesome and the amp feels pretty beefy for its small size (i would post pics but my cam is temporarily out of commission).

But so far the negatives are a big drawback. This unit gets pretty hot (cannot keep my hand on top for more than 3 or 4 seconds) and the local price is just ridiculous. At the present time i could buy one new, direct from the States and save about $400 on it.
Secondly, the Halo Hum exists. It is hard to discern during playback since i cannot A/B the unit with another amp but the hum is easily evident at 3 feet or less from the speaker when the preamp is turned off. I personally feel for nearly 2 grand an amp should NOT have any background noise.
_________________________
"Those who preach the myths of audio are ignorant of truth."

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#28213 - 12/20/03 03:18 PM Re: Parasound Halo (short review)
mwc Offline
aficionado

Registered: 07/21/02
Posts: 958
Loc: Texas(DFW)..that country to th...
In reply to:

I personally feel for nearly 2 grand an amp should NOT have any background noise.



Absoultly! Is it the amp itself that hums or do you hear it through the speakers?

Any thoughts on why it gets so hot? I wonder what the difference (heat wise) is relative to the Odyssey which literally never gets hot no matter how hard and long it's pushed. Is it heat sink design?
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*Does your train of thought have a caboose?*

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#28214 - 12/20/03 04:16 PM Re: Parasound Halo (short review)
chesseroo Offline
connoisseur

Registered: 05/13/02
Posts: 4827
Loc: western canada
The hum is audible through the speakers and as i previously mentioned, it kind of sounds like electrical current through overhead lighting, but not that loud.
The noise floor from the preamp 'drowns' out the hum once it is turned on but that doesn't mean the hum isn't there.

As for the heat, i'm sure the difference is in the weight/size of the heatsinks. The A23 is 28lbs, the Stratos is over 50.

I really like the Halo features though which the Stratos does not have.
Deciding between what makes a difference and what really won't is killing me.
There is still one unit left on my short list though, the Anthem MCA20.
The price for it locally is $1500cdn plus 14% tax. I can get it from the States for $750usd (add shipping, customs, exchange and tax) and the equivalent Cdn is under $1300.
Goes to show how much the audio vendors really jack up the prices.

_________________________
"Those who preach the myths of audio are ignorant of truth."

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#28215 - 12/20/03 05:03 PM Re: Parasound Halo (short review)
mwc Offline
aficionado

Registered: 07/21/02
Posts: 958
Loc: Texas(DFW)..that country to th...
Lots of good reviews on the Anthem. But then again, have we ever seen a negative review (from the "pro" writers) of a high end product with a big ad budget? I mean a good old fashion ass whoopin' of a product where they say "don't buy this product because.....". (excuse the mini rant please )

Yes, these choices can be nerve racking but, in the end, only you can decide.
_________________________
*Does your train of thought have a caboose?*

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#28216 - 12/20/03 05:07 PM Re: Parasound Halo (short review)
Zarak Offline
connoisseur

Registered: 03/09/03
Posts: 1849
Loc: PA
Most of them seem to go by the, "If you don't have anything nice to say..." philosophy.

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