Parasound Debuts John Curl-designed Preamp

While John Atkinson awaits a review sample of Parasound's just-released JC 2 two-channel analog preamp ($4000), photographed here (second from top) with Parasound president Richard Schram by Kalman Rubinson, I took the opportunity to discuss its genesis with Richard.

Believing that the best preamp ever manufactured was John Curl's no longer available $20,000 Blowtorch, which first came out in 1997, Richard set out to create the world's second-best preamp. In part, he did so simply because he believed he could. Taking as his starting point the Blowtorch's circuit topology, Richard determined to create a new preamp that would incorporate a new level of visual aesthetics and 21st-Century lifestyle demands (eg, remote control).

First he engaged the entire CTC design team: audiophile genius John Curl; circuit board designer John Thompson; and parts specialist Bob Crump. Crump has since died of a stroke, but not before he managed to apply his expertise to choosing parts based on an intimate knowledge of their sound. Richard also considers John Curl one of the few engineers who understands the relationship between how electrons move through parts and the sound of the music they create. "I can show you six areas in the JC 2 where I can change parts that will change the sound but not change the measurements," Richard told me. Sound, rather than measurements, was thus considered as the ultimate test of the design’s success.

"The topology is almost identical to the Blowtorch's," he told me, "but there is an extra degree of refinement." On the driver board, for example, Parasound has spaced parts even more closely together than before to reduce vibration. John Thompson’s circuit board also mimics the topology of the actual circuit, and looks very much like a schematic of the unit.

One of the reasons for the Blowtorch's high price was that its chassis, machined out of a solid aluminum ingot, cost $2000 to make. Richard instead chose mass production on the smallest-possible scale, lowering the unit price by means of a big upfront investment, and using, whenever possible, the same kinds of parts used throughout Parasound's highly regarded JC line of electronics.

Share | |
Comments
Kal Rubinson's picture

Actually, Richard is holding the back panel from a P7 multichannel analog preamp.Kal

Stephen Mejias's picture

Thanks for the correction, Kal. We've now changed the photograph and revised the text. The JC 2 appears on the rack behind Richard. It's the second unit from top.

Brian Walsh's picture

The CTC Blowtorch circuit board designer's name is Carl Thompson, not John Thompson. Carl also laid out the Vendetta Research phono stage and is involved in the new Vendetta VR3 phono stage seen at THE Show, to be available later this year.

Aletappeaks's picture

Glad to greet you, ladies and gentlemen!For sure you didn’t here about me yet, my parents call me James F. Collins.Generally I’m a venturesome gambler. recently I take a great interest in online-casino and poker. Not long time ago I started my own blog, where I describe my virtual adventures.Probably, it will be interesting for you to utilize special software facilitating winnings .Please visit my diary. http://allbestcasino.com I’ll be glad would you find time to leave your opinion.

Online products's picture

Learning the second language is become more fashion today. But how to learn them nore easy, our website aproved Rosetta Stone, you can choice Rosetta Stone Spanish(Latin America) or Rosetta Stone French or others, our rosetta stone including three—five level.Huge selection of the language you can choice. Such as Rosetta Stone Janpanese, Rosetta Stone English, Rosetta Stone German, Rosetta Stone Chinese, Rosetta Stone Italian and so on. I think you will interesting one of them. Don’t hesitate to browse our website: www.rosettalanguage.comManolo Blahnik pumps,christian louboutin shoes,Jimmy choo sandals all with the excellent quality and reasonable price.You will like them at first sight Knock Offs Christian Christian Louboutin Outlet. These shoes give you a sense of being a woman more confidence in the bedroom. All girls want your legs look longer, Welcome to http://www.christianlouboutin-online.net

seo lace's picture

I can't readd your site in Firefox 8.7, I just thought I might tell you about it.

Site Map / Direct Links