A fine Balance of simplicity with complexity, and a multi-award winner that’s anything but Basic: Clearaudio’s ever-popular duo of mid-priced phonostages offer a raft of covetable options for the high-end audio beginner or upgrader – and both have now been treated to their own upgrade.

Balance V2

Preamplifier, phonostage and headphone amplifier – Clearaudio‘s new Balance V2 combines three key devices in one, so there are options here for every type of vinyl spinner. The new V2 advances the technologies of the previous Balance Plus, while retaining the latter’s impressive array of options for adjusting and fine-tuning its performance to your particular system and preferences. Even so, this unit’s design remains elegantly unfussy and its operation effortlessly intuitive, moving between modes at the flick of a switch.

The Balance V2 features a fully balanced circuit design with completely independent circuitry for left and right channels, giving excellent stereo separation and a realistic soundstage.

Its volume control allows the unit to be connected directly to a power amplifier or to an active loudspeaker system. As well as the usual RCA outputs, the Balance V2 features balanced XLR outputs and a 6.3mm plug headphone output. A simple switch allows you to choose between moving magnet and moving coil mode. From there, the Balance V2 will automatically harmonize with almost any high-end phono cartridge without you needing to make any further adjustments.

High precision RIAA equalization achieves an accuracy of within 0.1dB, while an optional subsonic filter attenuates any unwanted low frequency noise. A separate power supply in its own sleek, resonance-shielding aluminium casing keeps any potential interference at bay.

With this small yet high-performance package, Clearaudio effectively balances audiophile-quality technology with a simplicity that can be enjoyed by any music enthusiast.

Basic V2

There’s actually nothing ‘basic’ about the Basic V2 phonostage. Don’t be fooled by its cool, minimalist design. Within that sleek aluminium casing (with silver or black anodized finish) lies an inner world of highly refined features. Its predecessor, the Basic Plus, was a multi-award winner and with the V2, Clearaudio has taken all of that ‘Plus’ technology up a notch.

On the outside, there’s just one visible control: a single power switch on the upper surface that opens up a raft of possibilities. On the underside you can switch between moving coil and moving magnet mode. Like the Balance V2, the Basic V2 is compatible with almost any high-end phono cartridge without making any further adjustments.

Or, you can choose from a range of performance enhancing settings to fine-tune its parameters to your system and your heart’s content. An optional subsonic filter attenuates any unwanted low frequency noise, while RIAA equalization accuracy is again within 0.1dB.

All of which adds up to the Basic V2 being the perfect all-rounder for both audiophiles and music lovers. Tweak away, or sit back and relax knowing you’re in the best possible hands – your choice entirely.

Pricing and availability

The Balance V2 and Basic V2 are available now, priced at £2,510 and £990 respectively (inc. VAT)