PS Audio StellarGold DAC USB DAC Getting Into Stellar

Getting Into Stellar

For audiophiles discouraged by the cost of PS Audio's high-end PerfectWave hardware [HFN Jun '23] – and the sheer size of its amplifier designs [HFN Dec '22] – the Stellar series is the place to look. The addition of the new StellarGold DAC and StellarGold Preamplifier expands the range to nine models, all with near identical, easily accommodated casework and four-figure price tags. Only the company's compact Sprout 100 integrated amplifier [HFN Feb '15] sits below it.

The two Gold units theoretically make the Stellar series a two-tier proposition, but it's always been varied in terms of both price and feature set. For example, standalone amplification is covered by the £1549 S300 power amplifier, rated at 2x140W/8ohm, and two monoblock options – the £2999/pair M700 [HFN Apr '20] and £6000/pair M1200 [HFN Jan '21] claiming 350W/8ohm and 600W/ 8ohm, respectively. All are built around Class D ICEpower modules, although the M1200 adds a tube-based input stage for a 'hybrid' design, while the others use PS Audio's own modular 'Gain Cell' input/voltage stage.

The same technology resides in the £1799 Gain Cell DAC [HFN Apr '20], plus the Stellar series' only model offering network audio functionality. The £3000 Stellar Strata [HFN Mar '21] is a 'just-add-speakers' amplifier combining digital and analogue connections (including USB-B and I2S) with a streaming module supported by PS Audio's Connect app. Completing the current range are the Stellar Phono Preamplifier [HFN Feb '20], and the Power Plant 3 AC regenerator [HFN Jan '20]. Might new Gold designs be on the way? Watch this space…

PS Audio
Boulder, Colorado
Supplied by: Signature Audio Systems
07738 007776