Pro-Ject PRE BOX S2 Digital: Unleashing Audiophile Excellence

Introduction

In today’s world of audio enthusiasts and music lovers, the quest for high-quality sound reproduction is paramount. Whether it’s for enjoying music, watching movies, or gaming, having a reliable and powerful amplifier is essential. That’s where the Pro-Ject PRE BOX S2 Digital comes into play.

The Pro-Ject PRE BOX S2 Digital is a hifi sound amplifier that combines a digital-to-analog converter (DAC) and a preamplifier in one compact unit. Designed with audiophiles in mind, this amplifier delivers exceptional sound performance and supports the latest high-resolution audio formats.

With its sleek and modern design, the Pro-Ject PRE BOX S2 Digital is not only a functional piece of equipment but also a stylish addition to any audio setup. Its compact size allows for easy placement on a desk or shelf, making it suitable for both home and office use.

In this review, we will delve into the technical specifications, design and construction, functionality, sound characteristics, and performance of the Pro-Ject PRE BOX S2 Digital. We will explore its advantages and evaluate its value for money. So sit back, relax, and let’s dive into the world of premium sound amplification with the Pro-Ject PRE BOX S2 Digital.

Technical Specifications

The Pro-Ject PRE BOX S2 Digital amplifier boasts impressive technical specifications that contribute to its exceptional sound performance.

With its class-leading components and audiophile-grade construction, this amplifier delivers a powerful and immersive audio experience. The signal-to-noise ratio (SNR) of 129 dB and total harmonic distortion (THD) of -120 dB ensure accurate and distortion-free sound reproduction.

Featuring a versatile range of inputs and outputs, the Pro-Ject PRE BOX S2 Digital supports various audio formats, including PCM up to 32-bit/768 kHz and DSD512, making it compatible with both existing and future high-resolution digital audio formats.

The amplifier offers three digital inputs, including a USB B input for connecting to a computer, an optical input for connecting to a TV, and a coaxial S/PDIF input for data transmission from devices like CD transports. Additionally, it features adjustable output for direct connection to power amplifiers or active speakers.

The Pro-Ject PRE BOX S2 Digital is designed to deliver precise synchronization and low phase noise, thanks to its proprietary clock generator with a dual-frequency grid for 44.1 kHz and 48 kHz signals. The frequency response ranges from 20 Hz to 20,000 Hz, ensuring accurate reproduction of both low and high frequencies.

With its compact dimensions of 37mm (H) x 103mm (W) x 122mm (D) and weighing just 0.6 kg, this amplifier is highly portable and can easily fit into any audio setup.

In conclusion, the Pro-Ject PRE BOX S2 Digital offers impressive technical specifications that contribute to its exceptional sound quality. Its wide range of inputs and outputs, support for high-resolution audio formats, precise synchronization capabilities, and compact design make it a versatile and reliable amplifier for any audiophile setup.

Design and Construction

The Pro-Ject PRE BOX S2 Digital amplifier boasts a sleek and modern design that will complement any audio setup. Its compact size, with dimensions of 103mm width, 37mm height, and 122mm depth, allows for easy integration into any space. The amplifier is available in a stylish black color, adding a touch of elegance to your audio system.

The construction of the Pro-Ject PRE BOX S2 Digital is of the highest quality, utilizing premium components and materials. The chassis is built with a four-layered gold-plated printed circuit board, which ensures optimal signal transmission and minimizes interference. This attention to detail in the construction guarantees a clean and pure audio signal.

Efficient cooling is achieved through the clever design of the amplifier. The ventilation slots on the top panel allow for proper heat dissipation, preventing overheating during prolonged use. This ensures the longevity and reliability of the amplifier.

The connectors and switches on the Pro-Ject PRE BOX S2 Digital are of exceptional quality. The USB input, coaxial audio inputs, and optical audio inputs are all sturdy and provide a secure connection for your digital devices. The analog outputs, including the RCA stereo output and headphone output jack (6.3mm), offer reliable connectivity options for your audio equipment.

Overall, the design and construction of the Pro-Ject PRE BOX S2 Digital amplifier exude elegance and durability. Its sleek appearance, premium materials, efficient cooling system, and high-quality connectors make it a standout choice for audiophiles seeking both style and performance in their audio setup.

Functionality

The Pro-Ject PRE BOX S2 Digital amplifier offers a wide range of functionality, making it a versatile option for audio enthusiasts. With its multiple connectivity options, you can easily connect various audio sources such as CD players, computers, smartphones, and more. The amplifier features one USB input, one coaxial audio input, and one optical audio input, allowing you to connect different devices seamlessly.

Additionally, the amplifier provides a convenient adjustable output level, allowing you to control the volume according to your preferences. This feature is particularly useful when connecting the amplifier directly to power amplifiers or active speakers.

Furthermore, the Pro-Ject PRE BOX S2 Digital offers flexibility in sound customization with its switchable digital filters. These filters allow you to tailor the sound to your liking and optimize the audio performance based on your preferences. The inclusion of a high-quality headphone output also enables private listening sessions with exceptional sound quality.

While the amplifier does not include features such as balance controls or tone adjustments, its focus on providing excellent audio performance and versatility in connectivity options makes it a reliable choice for both casual listeners and audiophiles alike. Whether you want to enjoy music from your computer or connect it to other audio devices, the Pro-Ject PRE BOX S2 Digital offers a seamless and user-friendly experience.

Sound Characteristics

The sound quality of the Pro-Ject PRE BOX S2 Digital amplifier is truly exceptional. It delivers a level of detail and clarity that brings music to life in a way that is both engaging and immersive. The instrument separation is outstanding, allowing each instrument to be heard with precision and accuracy. Whether it’s the delicate plucking of a guitar string or the subtle nuances of a violin, the amplifier reproduces every note with impressive clarity.

The bass response of the PRE BOX S2 Digital is deep and impactful, providing a solid foundation to the music without overpowering or muddying the other frequencies. It strikes a perfect balance, delivering tight and controlled bass that adds depth and richness to the overall sound.

The treble clarity of this amplifier is simply stunning. It captures the shimmering highs and delicate details of cymbals, strings, and vocals with remarkable precision. The highs are crisp, clear, and never harsh, ensuring a smooth and enjoyable listening experience.

In terms of overall sound presentation, the Pro-Ject PRE BOX S2 Digital excels in creating a wide and spacious soundstage. It offers an expansive sonic landscape where instruments are positioned with accuracy, allowing for a more immersive listening experience. The amplifier effortlessly brings out the nuances in recordings, revealing layers of depth and texture that may have gone unnoticed before.

When it comes to different music genres, the Pro-Ject PRE BOX S2 Digital performs exceptionally well across the board. It handles classical music with finesse, accurately reproducing the intricate details and dynamics of orchestral pieces. For rock and pop music, it delivers punchy and energetic sound, bringing out the power and impact of electric guitars and drums. Jazz enthusiasts will appreciate its ability to reproduce the delicate nuances of brass instruments and piano keys with incredible realism.

Overall, the sound characteristics of the Pro-Ject PRE BOX S2 Digital amplifier are nothing short of impressive. Its ability to capture every detail, provide a balanced and controlled bass response, and create a wide soundstage makes it a standout performer in its class. Regardless of the music genre, this amplifier will elevate your listening experience to new heights.

Sound Performance

The sound performance of the Pro-Ject PRE BOX S2 Digital amplifier is truly exceptional, delivering an immersive and captivating auditory experience. With its advanced audio technology and high-resolution capabilities, this amplifier ensures that every detail of your music is faithfully reproduced.

One of the standout qualities of the sound performance is its remarkable clarity. The amplifier excels at presenting intricate musical details with precision and accuracy, allowing you to hear subtle nuances and textures in your favorite tracks. Whether it’s the delicate plucking of guitar strings or the nuanced breathiness of a vocalist, the PRE BOX S2 Digital brings these elements to life with stunning clarity.

Furthermore, the dynamics of this amplifier are truly impressive. It effortlessly handles both quiet and loud passages, providing a wide dynamic range that adds depth and excitement to your listening experience. The transitions between soft and loud passages are smooth and seamless, ensuring that no detail gets lost in the mix.

The tonal balance of the PRE BOX S2 Digital is another aspect that deserves praise. It strikes a perfect equilibrium across the frequency range, ensuring that no frequency overpowers or dominates the others. The lows are deep and impactful, while the mids are rich and well-defined. The highs are crisp and detailed without ever becoming harsh or fatiguing.

Whether you’re listening to classical music with its intricate orchestral arrangements, or enjoying the punchy beats of electronic music, the Pro-Ject PRE BOX S2 Digital handles every genre with finesse and accuracy. It brings out the best in your music collection, allowing you to fully appreciate the artistry and craftsmanship behind each recording.

In conclusion, the sound performance of the Pro-Ject PRE BOX S2 Digital is nothing short of exceptional. Its clarity, dynamics, and tonal balance make it a standout amplifier in its class. Whether you’re a discerning audiophile or a casual music lover, this amplifier will elevate your listening experience to new heights.

Advantages

The Pro-Ject PRE BOX S2 Digital amplifier offers several advantages that set it apart from its competitors in the market.

Firstly, its audio performance is exceptional. With a 32-bit ESS SABRE DAC and ESS Hyperstream II technology, this amplifier delivers high-resolution sound with a dynamic range of up to 129 dB and THD+N of -120 dB. The support for PCM up to 32-bit/768 kHz and DSD512 ensures compatibility with various digital audio formats, making it future-proof.

Additionally, the Pro-Ject PRE BOX S2 Digital provides flexibility in connectivity options. It features three digital inputs, including a USB B input for connecting to computers, an optical input for televisions, and a coaxial input for transmitting data from other digital devices such as CD transports. The adjustable output allows direct connection to power amplifiers or active speakers, while the dedicated headphone output caters to music enthusiasts who prefer private listening sessions.

The construction of this amplifier is also worth mentioning. It utilizes premium-grade components such as organic polymer capacitors, MELF resistors, and polypropylene film capacitors, ensuring superior audio quality. The four-layer gold-plated PCB with shielding further enhances the overall performance and durability of the device.

When compared to other models in its price range, the Pro-Ject PRE BOX S2 Digital stands out due to its high-quality sound reproduction and extensive connectivity options. Its ability to handle high-resolution audio formats makes it suitable for audiophiles seeking uncompromised sound fidelity.

In conclusion, the Pro-Ject PRE BOX S2 Digital offers numerous advantages that make it a top contender in the amplifier market. From its exceptional audio performance to its versatile connectivity options and premium construction, this amplifier delivers an outstanding listening experience. Whether you are a music enthusiast or an audiophile seeking value for money, the Pro-Ject PRE BOX S2 Digital is undoubtedly a compelling choice.

Value for Money

The Pro-Ject PRE BOX S2 Digital amplifier offers exceptional value for money with its impressive performance, extensive features, and reasonable price. This amplifier provides audiophile-grade sound quality and supports high-resolution audio formats, ensuring a truly immersive listening experience.

With its 32-bit ESS SABRE ESS9038 DAC and ESS Hyperstream II technology, the PRE BOX S2 Digital delivers a dynamic range of up to 129 dB and THD+N of -120 dB, resulting in precise and detailed sound reproduction. The inclusion of seven switchable digital filters allows for customizable sound tuning, ensuring optimal synchronization and minimal distortion.

In terms of connectivity options, this amplifier offers three digital inputs, including a USB B input for computer connection, an optical input for connecting to a TV, and a coaxial S/PDIF input for other digital devices such as CD transports. Additionally, it features an adjustable output for direct connection to power amplifiers or active speakers, as well as a high-quality headphone output.

The construction of the PRE BOX S2 Digital is also worth mentioning. It incorporates premium components such as organic polymer capacitors and thin-film MELF resistors, ensuring superior audio performance. The four-layer gold-plated PCB with shielding further enhances the overall quality and reliability of the amplifier.

Considering its impressive specifications and build quality, the Pro-Ject PRE BOX S2 Digital is competitively priced in the market. It offers a wide range of features that are usually found in higher-priced amplifiers, making it an excellent investment for both audio enthusiasts and professionals.

Overall, the Pro-Ject PRE BOX S2 Digital provides exceptional value for money by delivering outstanding sound performance, versatile functionality, and high-quality construction at an affordable price point. Whether you are an audiophile looking for top-notch audio reproduction or a music lover seeking an immersive listening experience, this amplifier is sure to exceed your expectations without breaking the bank.

Conclusion

In conclusion, the Pro-Ject PRE BOX S2 Digital amplifier is a remarkable piece of audio equipment that delivers exceptional performance and versatility. With its advanced features and high-quality components, it offers a truly immersive listening experience.

The amplifier’s technical specifications showcase its capabilities, with a 32-bit audio DAC, a wide frequency range, and minimal distortion. The inclusion of multiple digital and analog inputs allows for flexible connectivity options, making it compatible with various audio sources.

The design and construction of the Pro-Ject PRE BOX S2 Digital are top-notch, featuring premium components and meticulous craftsmanship. The use of organic polymer capacitors, MELF resistors, and gold-plated PCBs ensures optimal signal transmission and durability.

In terms of functionality, this amplifier excels with its ability to handle high-resolution audio formats, including PCM up to 32-bit/768kHz and DSD512. The inclusion of selectable digital filters, such as the Pro-Ject Optimum Transient filter, allows for personalized sound tuning and improved synchronization.

When it comes to sound characteristics, the Pro-Ject PRE BOX S2 Digital delivers a detailed and dynamic performance. The ESS SABRE DACs provide an impressive dynamic range and low THD+N levels, resulting in a clean and accurate sound reproduction.

In terms of sound performance, the Pro-Ject PRE BOX S2 Digital truly shines. It effortlessly handles complex musical passages with precision and clarity. Whether you’re listening to delicate instrumental pieces or energetic rock tracks, this amplifier ensures an engaging and immersive listening experience.

One of the notable advantages of the Pro-Ject PRE BOX S2 Digital is its value for money. Considering its high-end features and exceptional sound quality, it offers a competitive price point compared to other amplifiers in its class.

In conclusion, if you’re an audiophile seeking a versatile and high-performing amplifier that can handle various audio formats with precision and accuracy, the Pro-Ject PRE BOX S2 Digital is an excellent choice. Its exceptional sound characteristics, premium construction, and flexible connectivity options make it a worthwhile investment for any music enthusiast.

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