The PeachTree Sona DAC, Amp and Shift Portable – CES 2015

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New things, new things!

Budget-friendly Peachtree Audio was out and about within the Venetian, doing that thing that they have always done so well – keeping things real in a audiophile world gone crazy. This time around the goods fell in line around more compact options. The first of which was the new portable headphone amplifier and phone companion called Shift. This leather-bound micro amp offers a very well thought out feature set.

The preliminary rundown includes both Apple Lighting and Android USB compatibility, high resolution and DSD, 8 hours of playback and phone charging to boot. There is a variable output switch to widen the range of applicable headphones and also a fixed or variable line level output. Its all sums well to a very nice collection of options for the $399 asking price. Availability begins in April.

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For desktop applications the new Sona line follows suit for those with a little more real estate to spare. The mid sized sonaDAC includes a Sabre DAC chipset with a more full sized headphone output. Much of the same options will exist from the Shift, but beefed up to include more traditional connections from gear. The SonaDAC is shooting for an estimated $1499 ticket price when it launches.

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The matching sonaAMP pushes a mighty 150 watts at 8 ohms out to loudspeakers via either balanced or unbalanced inputs. The new amp will retail for an estimated $999. All good things from a company known for getting listeners up off the couch and into the hifi hobby.

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  • Raptor Jesus

    Is the headphone amp in the SonaDAC the same as the one in their Nova series integrated amps? Because if so… it’s not going to cut the mustard.

    Other than that concern this stuff looks great.

    • Riley

      It is. It will have the same TI integrated circuit as the Nova125 and Nova125SE, the TPA6120A2.

      • Raptor Jesus

        Well that’s a big disappointment. This was supposed to be out this summer, I was told it was held back so they could improve the headphone circuit.

        • Riley

          I can’t confirm whether anything else has changed in the headphone circuit, but at least it will be using the same chip.

    • No it does not come with the same DAC as the Nova. Deploying the ESS Reference 9018 decoder chip this is Peachtree’s first DSD-capable DAC. It also handles PCM up to 32bit/384kHz via USB. Rounding out the digital inputs are a pair of toslink connectors and a pair of coax. Also on the back panel are balanced and single-ended outputs. The SonaDAC’s half-width chassis is a departure for Peachtree Audio and is clearly designed to partnered with the similarly pint-sized SonaAMP (US$999 or CAD$1350) which offers single-ended and balanced inputs and promises 150-wpc of ICEPower into 8 Ohms. This pre-power combo has the potential to worry Peachtree’s full size Nova220SE integrated (US$1999 or CAD$2698 ) if only because it packs superior DAC silicon to the 220SE’s ESS Sabre 9023.