Three in one
Integration of HiFi components is constantly evolving and progressing. Sometimes we don‘t even know which category to assign some devices to, as they cover so many areas and requirements at once. The Franconian analog specialist Clearaudio doesn‘t make it that difficult with its new Phono-Pre „Balance V2“. However, on closer inspection, you can use the two-part preamplifier, in which the power supply has been outsourced into one of the compact cabinets, in three different ways:
1. As a thoroughbred phono preamplifier for MM and MC pickups, offering balanced and unbalanced inputs and outputs for connection to a pre- or integrated amplifier. The volume control is then bridged so that the full output level is available.
2. As phono preamplifier with headphone output. When the level control is activated, a headphone can be operated and controlled. Clearaudio thus responds to the trend of people increasingly using headphones at home and not just as an emergency solution. If you plug a 6.3 mm jack into the socket provided, the Balance V2 switches off its XLR/cinch outputs.
3. As a phono preamplifier for direct connection to a power amplifier or a pair of active loudspeakers. If no headphones are plugged in, the activated potentiometer acts on the normal output sockets. In puristic phono chains, where the turntable is the only source, the Clearaudio can therefore take over the function of the preamplifier, although it does not offer any comfort apart from volume control.