If we had to pick one highlight of the multi-Award-winning Clearaudio Concept turntable, it'd be its excellent all-round sonic performance, natch. But subsequent praise would soon regard the ease of use of its 'plug and play' design, with its moving-magnet Concept cartridge fitted and weighted straight out of the box.
But how much easier would it be to be able to plug the turntable straight into a preamp, integrated or power amp – or even a pair of active speakers – as opposed to needing to a separate phono stage, or an amp with one built in? How much neater would it be if you could plug headphones straight into the deck? Well, such questions have been considered and answered by Clearaudio with its latest product.
The new Concept Active, Clearaudio says, "takes high-end simplicity to a whole new level", integrating a phono stage, preamplifier and headphone amplifier into the original Concept's design. So if owners of the deck want to listen to their records through headphones, a pair is all they need. And through loudspeakers? The Concept Active can be plugged straight into a power or integrated amp, or a pair of active speakers.
On paper, Clearaudio has taken the Concept's 'plug and plug' design and made it even more complete.
The Clearaudio Concept Active is available now, priced from £2000 to £2910 depending on finish (black, black and silver, wood birch finishes) and cartridge (Concept V2 MM or Concept MC).
Today, Clearaudio has also released a power supply upgrade from its Concept and Performance DC turntables. The Smart Power 12V (£630) is a battery-based DC power supply that, the company says, combines intelligent circuit technology with long-lasting nickel-metal rechargeable batteries and a minimal output impedance to deliver 12 volts of steady, noise-free power.