October 14, 2013 by Rachel Cericola
About a month back, Sony introduced eight new products under its High Resolution Audio line. Apparently, they were holding out on two items. The company just debuted the PHA-2 portable headphone DAC/amplifier and the TA-A1ES integrated stereo amplifier.
The PHA-2 is a portable DAC/amplifier that’s designed to work with a variety of audio sources and formats. It promises up to 192 kHz/24-bit PCM, as well as DSD (2.8MHz) and Double DSD (5.6MHz).
The compact device packs in a D/A converter, a custom headphone amplifier IC, an OCL (output capacitor-less) current feedback architecture, and a dual power supply. It also has an Asynchronous Transport Mode to help reduce timing errors.
Sony has made the PHA-2 compatible with both Mac and PC computers or you can connect iOS devices to the USB 2.0 input. If you’re all about Android, there is an analog audio input. It also has a built-in Lithium-ion battery for up to 6.5 hours of playtime with a digital connection and up to 17 hours with analog. Sony plans to ship the PHA-2 in March 2014, with an MSRP of $599.
The second product is coming a little sooner. The TA-A1ES integrated stereo amplifier (80 watts x 2) is the latest addition to Sony’s Elevated Standard Series. It’s specifically designed to work in conjunction with the company’s HAP-Z1ES reference standard Hi-Res Music Player. It’s got FET input and buffer circuits, as well as a power amp stage featuring Smart Bias Control for Class-A operation and a Single Push-Pull Hi-Current Amplifier.
Other features include XLR, RCA (4) and IR inputs, as well as SP (IMP4~, 8~) and headphone (high, mid and low impedance) outputs. When the TA-A1ES stereo amplifier ships, it will be priced at $1,999.
Sony’s TA-A1ES integrated stereo amplifier.
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Over the past 15 years, Rachel Cericola has covered entertainment, web and technology trends. Check her out at www.rachelcericola.com.
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