Introducing the Parasound Halo Integrated 6 (Hint 6 to its friends)
Following on from the success of its first ever integrated amplifier, the Halo Integrated, Parasound has unveiled the Halo Integrated 6 (AKA HINT 6). Upgraded components, more features, more inputs and a cutting-edge volume control join the HINT’s core architecture and John Curl designed 160-watt class A/AB power amplifier stage.
Named HINT 6 to reflect the pre-amp stage being derived from the forthcoming Parasound P 6 pre-amp, this second iteration HINT remains faithful to the original’s ‘powerful, musical and versatile’ design philosophy as well as its value-engineered price.
With a 1.1kVa transformer and dual-mono power supply at its heart, the new HINT 6 adds a Burr-Brown analogue resistor ladder volume control with ball-bearing supported aluminium knob. It offers an updated USB input and DAC implementation, and a further improved phono stage with higher gain for lower output cartridges. New convenience features include dimmable display, volume level memory and an additional optical input.
In addition to the class A/AB power section carried over from the original HINT, the HINT 6 retains the dedicated high-current headphone amplifier, a direct input that bypasses the pre-amp section, 12v trigger and IR integration, and fully balanced XLR in/out connections. Comprehensive analogue bass management and subwoofer control can be engaged for 2.1 systems and the phono stage offers variable loading for MM and MC cartridges. The Hint 6 is supplied with a robust, back-lit remote control.
Comments Parasound founder and president, Richard Schram: “The HINT receivedoutstanding accoladesfrom audiophile magazines around the world, so we looked carefully at what we could improve without significantly increasing the price.
“We began by upgrading key parts in the analogue preamp circuitry to achieve exceptional sonic transparency and improved channel separation. On the digital side, we redesigned the ESS-based DAC implementation making it easier to integrate with cutting-edge PCs and music servers. We also thoroughly modernised the volume control, replacing the original’s motorised potentiometer with an electronically switched, pure analogueresistor ladder array to achieve exceptional channel tracking even at low listening levels. John Curl’s circuit topology is timeless, so we carried over the Halo Integrated’s 160-watt, Class A/AB power amplifier stage to the HINT 6.
Finished in the new Halo cosmetic with gold trim and hand-milled aluminium end-caps, the Halo Integrated 6 is available now in silver or black.
More about the Hint 6 HERE