PS Audio is readying its "finest all-in-one music component" to date. Due to start shipping May or June, the Stellar Strata is a just-add-speakers stereo system that combines a music streamer, DAC, preamp and 200-watt power amp in a single chassis.
Unique to Strata is PS Audio’s newest streaming module, PS Connect, which in conjunction with the PS Connect companion app (iOS/Android) enables streaming from Tidal, Qobuz, Spotify, Napster, iHeart Radio and any DLNA source on the home network, with playback support up to 192kHz.
Alternatively, there are USB (384khZ/DSD128), optical (96KHz) and two coaxial (192kHz) inputs, in addition to three RCA and single XLR legacy inputs, for connecting external sources.
An I²S interface – the native format of CD transports and many servers – is also onboard, featuring a separate clock and data signal from the source. It's naturally compatible with the company's DirectStream Transport and can supposedly fully unlock the master quality layer found on SACD discs.
PS Audio's proprietary Digital Lens technology sees all digital input signals fed natively into a simplified FPGA device that reads their sample rate and format and reclocks the data, reduces jitter and minimises delay for faster throughput.
Another PS Audio technology, GainCell, has been implemented to lessen the detrimental impact of the signal path on the music signal. Instead of adding additional circuitry to the path to perform preampfification duties (volume adjustment), the preamp’s amplifier stage varies its own gain in accordance to the front-panel volume control – ultimately ensuring the circuitry is as kept as simple as possible.
PS Audio's Stellar Strata retails for £3000, with shipping starting in May or June.