Parasound’s Z Series

Speaking of great things in small packages, here we see Parasound’s Zphono USB phono preamplifier ($349) and Zdac digital-to-analog converter ($450). Parasound’s Z Series products are handsome, truly affordable, and built like bricks. Interesting side note: The half-width, rack-mount design has its roots in a mic preamp that Parasound built for AMF bowling centers in the 1980s. I bet those mic preamps kicked butt, too.

I hope you’ll read all about the Zphono USB phono preamp in the March issue of Stereophile. I’ll tell you now that I love the damn thing. Parasound’s Richard Schram is especially excited about the new Zdac, however. It’s compatible with resolutions up to 96kHz via USB and up to 192kHz via optical/coaxial, and its circuitry was derived from the DAC used in Parasound’s top-of-the-line CD1 CD player.

Schram did a little jump. “I like being disruptive,” he grinned.

The Z Series also includes an impressively hefty, 45Wpc class-A/B amplifier ($350) and matching preamp ($400). If only they came in silver, too, and without the rack-mounting holes. Oh, wait.

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soundboy's picture

Finally, some actually affordable components to get excited about! 

brent71's picture

Only 96 khz over USB? Why not do 192 over USB 2.0? That's kind of a deal-breaker.

crissan6's picture

So then, will one that has the Zcd get any benefit buying the ZDac, since the Cd also has a USB entry??

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