In 2015, we took a look at PS Audio’s Sprout digital integrated amplifier and liked what we saw, or rather, what we heard. The company managed to squeeze an awful lot of features into a small package while keeping the unit easy to use. Now some time has passed since the release of the original Sprout, and PS Audio is back with the next-generation Sprout100, which keeps everything great about the original while doubling the power.
The original Sprout maxed out at 50 watts per channel, while the Sprout100 is capable of either 50 watts per channel at 8 ohms or 100 watts per channel at 4 ohms. That is enough power to supply most modern speakers, especially considering the small size that gave both models of the Sprout their names. Like the original, the Sprout100 features a built-in vinyl preamp and can function as a headphone amp.
A more powerful output isn’t the only difference between the Sprout100 and the original. The Wolfson DAC used in the Sprout has been replaced with a Sabre 9016 for increased linearity. This new DAC can handle up to 384 kHz/24-bit PCM or double rate DSD, making it a nice option to hook up to your hi-res music player. We haven’t yet heard the Sprout100 in person, but the original did a great job of avoiding the sterile sound that class D amplification can be known for, and we expect the new model to be similar.
The Sprout100 features a dedicated subwoofer output alongside the standard speaker jacks, as well as RCA analog inputs and outputs. Digital inputs are available for hooking up CD players or hi-res music players, with an optical TOSLINK port joining the coaxial jack found on the original. If you prefer your music with a little extra thump, an optional bass boost is included. Finally, a remote control lets you get a little more hands-off when it comes to controlling the device.
The PS Audio Sprout100 will begin shipping in May, selling directly from the PS Audio factory as well as retailers like Amazon. The price is almost as impressive as the feature list: While the original Sprout sold for $500, the Sprout100 sells for just $100 more at $600. If you’re getting into vinyl collecting and looking to put together a listening setup, the Sprout100 is a relatively affordable option that likely won’t disappoint in the sound department.