Para­sound JC 3 Jnr

Sound+Image - - Music Sources -

It’s 10 times the price of the phono stage above, but as noted, the phono stage is a crit­i­cal ele­ment in vinyl re­play, not only am­pli­fy­ing the tiny sig­nals a thou­sand-fold, but also in charge of the cru­cial RIAA EQ ap­plied to vinyl record­ing and re­pro­duc­tion. This is the third it­er­a­tion of the JC 3 from Para­sound’s owner Richard Schram and his de­signer John Curl, a full-width and full-depth com­po­nent with all the op­tions you should need for mm or mc car­tridges — in­deed the $2995 JC 3 Jnr al­lows a sim­ple se­lec­tion (via tog­gle switch) be­tween ‘fixed’ in­put im­ped­ance (47kΩ) and ‘vari­able’ in­put im­ped­ance (50–500Ω), plus also be­tween three gain set­tings: 40dB, 50dB and 60dB (gain se­lec­tion is also via tog­gle switch). And the ‘vari­able’ set­ting is truly and un­usu­ally vari­able, be­cause it’s ac­com­plished via a ro­tary po­ten­tiome­ter, with the in­ter­est­ing ad­van­tage that it’s pos­si­ble to fine-tune the im­ped­ance ‘on-the-fly’.

Straight out of the box, with­out any warm-up at all, the Para­sound JC 3 Jnr sounded great. Stereo imag­ing was su­perb, mu­si­cal de­liv­ery im­pec­ca­ble, in­deed of­ten breath­tak­ingly beau­ti­ful.

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“The JC 3 Jnr shows the value of a fine phono stage — su­perb stereo imag­ing and im­pec­ca­ble (of­ten breath­tak­ing) mu­si­cal de­liv­ery.”

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