Krell HTS 7.1/Anthem D1/Arcam AV9

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Nuance

Re: Krell HTS 7.1/Anthem D1/Arcam AV9
« Reply #20 on: 5 Jan 2010, 05:00 pm »
The issue with the center channel is probably not the Denon's preamp functionality, but perhaps a level matching issue, a power issue or a problem with the center or room itself.  Have you ruled any of that stuff out, and if so, how?

In all honesty, I don't think you will hear much difference when watching movies using a multi-channel preamp/processor over a receiver.  In my experience movies just don't have enough micro-dynamics, intricacies and subtle nuances to allow an obvious audible difference when watching/listening through a preamp/processor.  In other words, for me its a waste of money, but YMMV.  I am with Zybar: keep the Denon but pair it with an external amp.  If you find a 2-channel preamp with HT bypass you can use the amp with both the preamp and receiver, not having to worry about swapping cables or anything.  And again, as Zybar said, I too have not heard a multi-channel processor than can compete with a dedicated 2-channel preamp in the musical sound quality department. 

Best of luck to you, divisionbell.

Big Red Machine

Re: Krell HTS 7.1/Anthem D1/Arcam AV9
« Reply #21 on: 5 Jan 2010, 05:12 pm »
I'm temporarily using a Hafler bridged to mono for the center and even if I boost it, the sound is terrible from a clarity and level perspective.  Having the same brand of amplification across the front is recommended at a minimum.

This temporary setup is pressing my patience as the sound is so muffled and recessed as compared to using the Emo amp I had.  But I want the same amps across all 7 speakers, so am in the hunt on the cheap.

divisionbell77

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Re: Krell HTS 7.1/Anthem D1/Arcam AV9
« Reply #22 on: 5 Jan 2010, 05:18 pm »
I have most likely spent enough hours to equal a month's worth of time trying to get the issue resolved, even breaking down and using the room EQ to try to resolve.  Issue has been persistent in two different rooms(hell, two different houses!) using the same speakers(Onix Rockets), trying different placements, flip cables around, etc, etc, etc.  It has basically driven me nuts and I at times wonder just how much it has contributed to my receding hair line.  I'd blame it on my love of whiskey, but that is the Irish half of me.

I never had the issue with the HK receiver I was using before the Denon.  I also do find the amps in the Denon to not be all that great, IMO.  The old HK, with half the 'rated power,' always seemed to have plenty of reserves, where I find the Denon does not.  I have always been a fan of the HK amps when it comes to their receivers, just not all the glitches that come with the rest of the it.

targa02

Re: Krell HTS 7.1/Anthem D1/Arcam AV9
« Reply #23 on: 5 Jan 2010, 07:29 pm »
Damn, I really like this except for one thing: Directv HD DVR surround sound.  i did not realize someone made a multi-channel pre.

Call Jack Tozzi at Spearit.  They sell a Midiland digital control station that solves that problem.

The ADS-2000 is a multifunction audio digital control station. Comes with a remote control and dolby decoder. It has AC-3/PCM input auto-detection. It is 7.10"x2.40"x5.30". Comes with a LCD Display/Graphic Equalizer.

The McCormack pre amp and maybe the McCormack 5 channel amp, or AVA Van Alstine amps should make for a great 50/50 (music/HT) system.

Sonix

Re: Krell HTS 7.1/Anthem D1/Arcam AV9
« Reply #24 on: 5 Jan 2010, 11:49 pm »
You might want to consider the McCormack Audio MAP-1.  This is a very nice multi-channel pre amp with no processing capability, which you do not need, since the decoding will be handled by your Oppo.  Spearit Sound (I have no connection) has a demo for sale at $1595. 
http://www.spearitsound.com/mccormack/map1.asp

Gary

The MAP-1 looks impressive from the review at Home Theater & Sound. :thumb:

Would anyone know how this unit stacks up to the Parasound P7?

Thank You Very Much!

Ken

targa02

Re: Krell HTS 7.1/Anthem D1/Arcam AV9
« Reply #25 on: 6 Jan 2010, 12:28 am »
Sorry, I have not had the pleasure of hearing either one the McCormack or Parasound.  I am getting the CJ Met 1 (should arrive tomorrow  :dance:), which is a hybrid multichannel preamp and will report back after some quality listening time!

TooManyToys

Re: Krell HTS 7.1/Anthem D1/Arcam AV9
« Reply #26 on: 9 Jan 2010, 12:57 pm »
The Arcam AV9 is a very nice unit, one that I haven't considered to upgrade so far.  In either 7.1 direct or 2 channel direct it does not alter anything in the path.  And it's cheap in the reselling market right now since it does not do any HDMI processing, just switching.

divisionbell77

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Re: Krell HTS 7.1/Anthem D1/Arcam AV9
« Reply #27 on: 10 Feb 2010, 04:40 pm »
Well, along with the Denon 3808 I have, I will also be trying out an Anthem Statement with ARC(at my house now) and an Arcam AVR600(arriving tomorrow).  I have a Rotel 5 channel amp I will be using, for the Denon and Arcam I will test with built in amps and the Rotel.

So far, using my current set up, I am not sold on the 2 channel performance of the Anthem.  I think the Denon actually sounds much better.

While many thought the Denon is enough for movie/tv I have found it very lacking, and my importance is both 2 channel and multichannel(surround sound) performance.  So killing two birds with one stone, then later upgrading the 2 channel was my priority.

I will be using both the internal DACs of each unit, and those of the source devices(Squeezebox Duet and Oppo BDP-83).  I am figuring my first upgrade for 2 channel will be an external DAC(AVA Ultra/DacMagic/Benchmark Dac 1 are ones I want to demo) so I want to not only compare the different DAC's, but also the analog of the Denon, Arcam and Anthem.

Really interested in hearing the AVR600 and seeing what all the hubbub is about(not just performance, but also the bugs/glitches I see it has with HDMI handshakes with specific equipment).

Now the wait for my Salks, which have an ETA of mid to end of this week!

Nuance

Re: Krell HTS 7.1/Anthem D1/Arcam AV9
« Reply #28 on: 10 Feb 2010, 05:00 pm »
Which Anthem Statement did you get?

I am surprised you prefer the sound of the Denon over the Anthem.  Have you tried listening to the Anthem with and without ARC engaged?  If using ARC, how did you calibrate?  Also, when making the comparison, were you using digital or analog connections?

I don't recall - did you ever pick up a level meter and ensure the center channel and rear speakers were the same dB volume of main speakers? 

Might I add the Music Hall tube DAC and PS Audio Digital Link III DAC to your list?  They are much less analytical than the Benchmark. 

When comparing the Denon and AVR600, again, be sure to use a level meter to set the volume level of channel to the same level at the listening position.  To do this, just hold the level meter at ear level at the listening position (set to C weighted and Slow) and rotate through each channel, setting each to the same volume (75 decibels, for example).  If you already know how to do this and have been doing this, forgive me; my bad.  Finally, be sure to set each receiver up the same way (speaker distances, crossover or lack of, Direct or Pure audio mode, listening with or without a sub, etc).  This will ensure an apples to apples comparison.  I cannot stress enough how important it is to do this, especially the part about setting the channels levels to the same dB volume.  Try to listen at the same volume level as well, as even 1dB difference can be perceived as "better" or "clearer" sounding.

Anyway, you get the idea.  :)  I hope everything goes well for you and that the decision is an easy one.  Enjoy, and good luck.


divisionbell77

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Re: Krell HTS 7.1/Anthem D1/Arcam AV9
« Reply #29 on: 10 Feb 2010, 05:34 pm »
Yes, still have my Radio Shack level meter(analog version) and use it to level match at all times, also to check that any of the auto set ups I have run(like ARC and Audyssey or however they spell their name).

It is the Statement D1, which is sonically the same as the D2.  The only difference between them is the addition of HDMI, high resolution formats like DTS-MA and the video section.  Audio wise it is the same.  Use both ARC and no ARC.  ARC is a HUGE improvement, especially in the low ranges. 

The key in comparing the Anthem to the Denon is 'so far.'

The Anthem is better, right up until you start to crank up the volume.  It is not the Rotel not keeping up either, as I have used the Denon with the Rotel and do not have the break up at high volumes.  It is really disappointing.  At 'normal' listening levels it sounds fine.  When i crank it up to 'reference' i get displeased quickly as it sounds like it is breaking up.  Separation, sound stage, etc are all better on the Anthem, but if it breaks apart at high levels it is not worth it.

Now, I did not fool around with it much after doing basic set up(level matched all channels) and running ARC.  The only reason I have not done any tweaking boils down to the fact the Salks are about ready and I have been playing around more with the set up of the unit(renaming inputs, running ARC over and over in different listening positions, getting used to the menu system, etc).  I even had to trouble shoot a very sensitive remote colume control(both the anthem remote and my harmony all in one).  turns out inside the Anthem there are the IR repeaters and they were also picking up the IR signal.  Turning them off fixed the issue. 

i figured it was pointless to try to 'dial it in' when the entire speaker system is being replaced in a week(minus the sub).

For movies/TV it completely squashes the Denon and gives no indication of any break up at high volumes.  Switching ARC on and off also shows what a fantastic job it does with blending in all 5 speakers together.

I can tell you that I never used Audyssey with music, just with movies/tv.  With the Anthem, I use ARC with both.  The difference on and off is amazing.  I am surprised they are not trying to market it as a stand alone product like Audyssey does.

fsimms

Re: Krell HTS 7.1/Anthem D1/Arcam AV9
« Reply #30 on: 11 Feb 2010, 04:51 am »
Quote
I will be using both the internal DACs of each unit, and those of the source devices(Squeezebox Duet and Oppo BDP-83).  I am figuring my first upgrade for 2 channel will be an external DAC(AVA Ultra/DacMagic/Benchmark Dac 1 are ones I want to demo) so I want to not only compare the different DAC's, but also the analog of the Denon, Arcam and Anthem.

You may or may not know this, but one thing to look out for is that most, if not all, AVR's route all of the inputs through their internal DAC's.  They do this because all the tone and room controls are done in software. For the analog signals to have tone controls and bass management they have to go through an internal ADC to convert the signals into digital to be processed.  To test the DAC's of the Duet and Oppo, they need to be run directly into your amp (Rotel?) unless you have a 2 channel preamp.


Bob

writeface

Re: Krell HTS 7.1/Anthem D1/Arcam AV9
« Reply #31 on: 11 Feb 2010, 05:40 am »
I am using Marantz SR8002 AVR. Wyred 4 Sound STP preamp (with HT bypass) and mono block amps are used to power the L-Rs for 2 channel music (PerfectwaveDac/Transport) and the center speaker was powered (I sold the center to make room for the new SALK Speaks) by Marantz. I had no problems at all with the center speaker. I am waiting for my HT-3s and HT-center to arrive, I hope, this set-up will work nicely with the new speakers as well. I don't plan on changing the AVR anytime soon.

Sonix

Re: Krell HTS 7.1/Anthem D1/Arcam AV9
« Reply #32 on: 11 Feb 2010, 07:49 am »
writeface, you have a PM :)

bryede

Re: Krell HTS 7.1/Anthem D1/Arcam AV9
« Reply #33 on: 11 Feb 2010, 10:10 am »
You may or may not know this, but one thing to look out for is that most, if not all, AVR's route all of the inputs through their internal DAC's.

One feature I require in an AVR is a direct or bypass feature for 2-channel audio.

divisionbell77

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Re: Krell HTS 7.1/Anthem D1/Arcam AV9
« Reply #34 on: 11 Feb 2010, 11:33 am »
You may or may not know this, but one thing to look out for is that most, if not all, AVR's route all of the inputs through their internal DAC's.  They do this because all the tone and room controls are done in software. For the analog signals to have tone controls and bass management they have to go through an internal ADC to convert the signals into digital to be processed.  To test the DAC's of the Duet and Oppo, they need to be run directly into your amp (Rotel?) unless you have a 2 channel preamp.


Bob

All three have direct stereo.

divisionbell77

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Re: Krell HTS 7.1/Anthem D1/Arcam AV9
« Reply #35 on: 11 Feb 2010, 02:05 pm »
Arcam AVR600 just got delivered to my work.  I had to get the cart I use for moving servers and rack mount UPS's around!!!

divisionbell77

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Re: Krell HTS 7.1/Anthem D1/Arcam AV9
« Reply #36 on: 12 Feb 2010, 01:04 pm »
Early results with my old speakers are very good for the AVR600.  It excels at both music and movies, though there is much more tweaking I need to do, especially with integrating my sub. 

After manual set up, ran the auto EQ for giggles, it was way off in distances and made the sub either boomy or non existent, depending on what was playing.  ARC for the Anthem was dead on. 

Arcam has been tight lipped on what exactly the 'Room EQ' does, and I would not be surprised to find out not much at all.  It is by far the worst of the three, but I will run it a few more times just to see.  While I do not depend on Room EQ, I do try it and in the case of ARC found it to be amazing for both music and movies, Audyssey was great for movies but not music, and this Arcam EQ doesn't seem to be much good for anything.

I am also experiencing one of the issues others have reported, which is the popping sound when switching sources(more like a 'thud' from the sub woofer).  So far no handshake issues, but I never did watch a bluray, just TV and music. 

There is a new 2.3 firmware coming out in a week or so, hopefully that will smooth out the popping.  With lock in to the signal can be annoying.  like when skipping over commercials with the DVR, when the show starts there is a long delay in audio as it syncs on the signal/reads the audio flags.  Annoying, but I have had other units in the past with that issue.

It is worrisome(the issues with the unit), hope it doesn't become a deal breaker as so far this Arcam really sounds like a winner.

divisionbell77

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Re: Krell HTS 7.1/Anthem D1/Arcam AV9
« Reply #37 on: 12 Feb 2010, 01:30 pm »
For anyone interested, the music I used for my demo after initial set up:

Band: Koop
Albums: Koop Islands, Waltz for Koop

Band: Les Hommes
Albums: Less Hommes, The Mood is Modal

Band: Morcheeba
Albums: Who Can You Trust

Band: Thievery Corporation
Albums: The Mirror Conspiracy

Band: Phoenix
Albums: Wolfgang Amadeus

Band: Yeah Yeah Yeahs
Album: It's Blitz

Band: The Decemberists
Album: The Crane Wife

Band: Beck
Albums: The Information, Guero, Modern Guilt, Mutations

Nuance

Re: Krell HTS 7.1/Anthem D1/Arcam AV9
« Reply #38 on: 12 Feb 2010, 03:58 pm »
Sorry to hear some new issues have been introduced with the Arcam.  For the price of that receiver that is just unacceptable in my book, but I hope it works out for you.

So did the center channel volume/clarity issue get resolved?

I too have had no luck with any room EQ systems except ARC; ARC was at a buddy's home, though. 

Best wishes to you.

divisionbell77

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Re: Krell HTS 7.1/Anthem D1/Arcam AV9
« Reply #39 on: 12 Feb 2010, 04:34 pm »
Center cleared up a lot once I got the Rotel in.

I knew of the issues with the Arcam, like the pop/thud.  However, numerous other brands have that issue(even priced much higher than the Arcam).  The person i bought it from disclosed they have the issues that are with 'all' the units, and none of the ones that 'a few' people have had.  They did not have an Oppo BR player, and there have been reports of handshake issues, so that will be something i need to test ASAP.

I removed the Rotel and was using the amps built into the Arcam as I have never heard class g amps.  I must say, i was very impressed.  Very robust, with plenty of reserves when needed.  My current speakers are not very efficient(Onix Rockets) and the Arcam drove them perfectly.  Seemed(all subjective of course) to have more 'power' than the Rotel despite the Rotel being rated at over 100 watts per channel higer(in measured tests, not manufacturer press releases).

As of now it is the early 'champ' even though my SongTowers are on hold.  There was an issue on inspection with one of the cabinets and Jim is working on the finish and if need be to build a whole new one.  This gives me plenty of time to continue to fool around with the Arcam and get used to it's menu system.  I feel I know the Anthem like the back of my hand now.

I only threw the Denon in the mix as I have it so why not.  It will be interesting to see if the Anthem or the Arcam is the 'winner' since it is a pre/pro vs receiver.  Arcam hands down right now for music, have a lot of tweaking to go on the movie side of it(and further tweaking of the Anthem's music side).

Oh, and everytime I see one of those Cambridge 840C CD players/DAC pop up on audiogon for under a grand I get this itch on my finger that keeps wanting me to pull the trigger to give one a try.

Besides the Denon(owned since new), the Anthem, Rotel and Arcam are all used and purchased just below going rates of Audiogon and all have warranty left(Arcam 4.5 years, Anthem full manufacturer warranty).