Constellation Audio decided to see if they could bring the same concepts, the same care … and even the same audio circuits … to demanding audiophiles who crave the state of the art at a more modest cost. The Inspiration STEREO 1.0 amplifier perfectly embodies this aesthetic. It’s not exactly the same as their Hercules and Centaur stereo amplifiers, but one must look carefully to discover the differences.
As with all Constellation Audio amplifiers, the heart of the Inspiration STEREO 1.0 is the unique Balanced Bridged circuit topology, which combines multiple single-ended amplifier modules in a fully balanced design.
Constellation’s Balanced Bridged topology uses only N-type output transistors, so the two halves of the audio signal are always perfectly balanced. In most fully balanced amplifiers, the schematics for the positive and negative halves of the amplifier circuit are mirrored, but one half uses N-type transistors and the other half uses P-type transistors. Thus, a perfectly balanced output can never be achieved.
Given its conservatively rated 200 watts per channel, though, you are highly unlikely to exhaust the Inspiration STEREO 1.0’s dynamic reserves. Massive heat sinks, ventilated through hundreds of ventilation ports in Constellation Audio’s trademark machined-aluminum side panels, assure cool, reliable operation.
The Inspiration STEREO 1.0 is the very essence of the Reference-series Hercules and Performance-series Centaur amplifiers, distilled into a more compact and affordable package.
The entire Inspiration line has been awarded The Absolute Sound 2014 Product of the Year awards.
|Inputs||1 Constellation Direct XLR, 1 standard balanced XLR, 1 unbalanced RCA|
|Outputs||metal binding posts|
|Power output per channel, 8Ω (1 kHz @ 1% THD+N)||200 watts|
|Power output per channel, 4Ω (1 kHz @ 1% THD+N)||400 watts|
|Frequency response||10 Hz to 80 kHz, +0/-0.5 dB|
|Gain||14dB Constellation Direct, 26 dB Balanced & RCA|
|THD+N (1 kHz @ up to 90% of rated power)||<0.05%|
|Damping factor (8Ω load)||80|
|Input impedance||20KΩ Constellation Direct, 10KΩ RCA unbalanced, 20KΩ XLR balanced|
|Siganl-to-noise ratio||>-95 dB, A-weighted|
|Output noise||<70 µV, 500 kHz BW, -116 dB @ 250 watts|
|Weight||55 lbs/24.9 kg|
|Dimensions||8.5 x 17.0 x 19.0 in
216 x 432 x 483 mm
Inspiration STEREO 1.0 / Stereo Power Amplifier Features:
200 watts per channel into 8 ohms
Balanced bridged design from Hercules and Centaur
Line Stage Gain Module
Fully discrete circuitry
Ultra-smooth, high-current power supply
No output filters required
Shortest possible signal path
Shielded enclosure for power supply