After many years of dedicated service, the Clearaudio Smart Phono has been replaced by a more ambitious model: the Clearaudio Smart Phono V2 phono preamplifier!
Clearaudio Smart Phono V2: unit
This striking new anti-resonance and non-magnetic unit is made of brushed aluminium with rounded angles.
The rear panel includes two RCA pairs (in and out), a ground plug for the ground connector, and the input for the new DC outboard power supply.
On the bottom of the Smart Phono V2 are switches for moving between MM and MC, and for turning on the subsonic filter, which restricts the lowest end of the bass register and prevents clashes in the lower frequencies.
Note: these adjustments are completely separate for both channels as the phono preamplifier has a double mono design.
Clearaudio Smart Phono V2: components
To pack as much technology as possible into this tiny housing, Clearaudio has used carefully selected CMS components that were assembled manually at the Erlangen site and tested several times throughout the manufacturing phase.
All these measures, combined with an assembly using very short leads, provides a signal-to-noise ratio of 85 decibels!
Clearaudio Smart Phono V2: adjustments
Another switch also allows you to adjust your cartridge load with precision (50, 100, 500, 1000, 5000, and 47 Kohms).
You can adjust the gain between 34 and 68 dB (depending on the cartridge) using the thumb wheel on the top of the unit.
This Clearaudio Smart Phono V2 also has an M/A switch which the previous version was lacking.
Clearaudio Smart Phono V2: listening and review
The sound reproduction of the Smart Phono V2 stands in stark contrast to its size. Within this price range, it is certainly the most impressive we've come across so far.
The dynamic range is excellent and the tempo is perfectly pronounced.
The standard of transparency and detail it offers is well above what you would expect from a preamplifier of this price.
The sound stage is very precise and realistic, and wider than the stage offered by the Nano Phono V2.
The overall balance is clear and defined, without a hint of harshness.The textures are also fuller and more nuanced than the Nano Phono V2.
Thanks to its many and varied adjustable settings, the Clearaudio Smart Phono V2 phono preamplifier is a highly versatile preamp, offering many different remarkable possibilities. It is compatible with all types of phono cartridges and turntables, not just Clearaudio products.
A highly recommended benchmark product! Franck
Compatibility: MM and MC
MM gain: 34-48 dB
MC gain: 54-68 dB
MM load impedance: 47 Kohms/220, 250, 400 pF
MC load impedance: 50, 100, 500, 1000, 5000 Ohms
Subsonic filter: On/Off
RIAA curve accuracy: +/- 0.3 dB 20 Hz to 50 KHz
Distortion: 0.004 %
Signal-to-noise ratio: 72 dB (MC) and 85 dB (MM)
Channel separation: > 90 dB
Output voltage: 10 V max efficient
Outboard power supply: +/- 18 V DC/300 mA
Consumption in use: 2.7 W
Off power consumption: 0 W
Dimensions: 123 x 93 x 40cm