Best AV processor for UHD Blu-ray 5.1 only

Discussion in 'AV Pre-Amp/Processors & Power Amps' started by DT79, Sep 6, 2016.


    1. DT79

      DT79
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      Hi - I'm trying to decide of it's worth installing overhead channels while redecorating my home cinema room, to enable a full Atmos set-up once I upgrade my kit to support UHD. I'm actually inclining against it right now for various practical reasons, so will most likely stick with 5.1. My thread for that is here - A couple of basic Atmos questions

      Assuming I stick to 5.1, what is the best, highest quality option for a 5.1 AV processor? I'm wondering whether a second hand top-notch processor of yesteryear might be the best bet if all I need is the best possible 5.1 processing. How about pairing a Tag AV192 or Arcam AV8 with a Panasonic UB900 via 5.1 channel analogue out (I could route all other AV sources through the TV and connect audio via optical)? Or what about a cheaper UHD blu-ray player connected to something like an Arcam AV9 or Marantz AV7005 via HDMI?

      Or would the same money (~£500) spent on a modern AV Receiver (I don't need the amplification but new AV processors tend to be much more expensive) produce better results purely because things have moved on so much?

      I have an Oppo 105 at the moment, connected directly to active speakers, which is a pleasingly elegant solution, and which for the most part I'm very happy with, but there is one functional niggle - audio delay is set globally, not per input - which will need to be addressed on their new UHD blu-ray player, in order for me to replace my 105 with that.

      Any thoughts and advice much appreciated!

      Cheers
      Dan
       
    2. Paul7777x

      Paul7777x
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    3. DT79

      DT79
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      that does look like a bargain and ticks all the boxes, whichever way I go.
       
    4. Paul7777x

      Paul7777x
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      Some aren't fond of having all those 'wasted' power amp bits, but it's either that or fork out a mighty mint for a serious cash heavy processor.

      I'm a bit surprised there aren't a couple at least at a reasonable price?
       
    5. DannyBoy73

      DannyBoy73
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      How about Anthem MRX 520? It only has 5 channel amp built in and but doesn't have the pre-outputs to add more channels later tho, but that does make it alot cheaper than the MRX 720.
       
    6. KelvinS1965

      KelvinS1965
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      Just to comment that the AV9 does not decode any sound (not even stereo) via the HDMI in. They are just there to switch the signal audio comes via analogue inputs or optical/coax.
       
    7. DT79

      DT79
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      Thanks for pointing that out.
       
    8. DT79

      DT79
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      I've pretty much decided to stick to 5.1, and I won't make any decisions about future gear until I see what the oppo UHD replacement for the BDP105 (assuming there will be one) looks like.
       
    9. Deleted member 598831

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      I believe its due latter end of this year, or more than likely next year.
       
    10. dfdd

      dfdd
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      There's a very nice Yamaha z11 in the classifieds:hiya:
       
    11. DT79

      DT79
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      Looking into my options a bit more, I wonder if a second hand Anthem might be a good option (310 or 510 maybe) as my room isn't ideal and I might really benefit from room correction.

      If I went this route I'd get a UHD blu-ray player with twin hdmi and I think other sources including sky q could go via the anthem (is that right)?

      Do any other brands offer a decent room correction facility?
       
    12. KelvinS1965

      KelvinS1965
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      It depends on whether you think Audyssey is 'decent' or not (I don't but I know plenty do). The other options would be Arcam, but the cheapest model is the AV390 which is around £2,000 as it has Dirac room correction and Atmos capabilities.

      TBH I think you're on the right track already with the Anthem. There may even be one or two in the classifieds at the moment.
       
    13. DT79

      DT79
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      So around a year ago I ended up going for the Denon 3300, because I decided that it was the most cost effective way of getting a fully spec’d up AV Processor with a good degree of future proofing, and generally i’ve been pretty happy with it, particularly for movie soundtracks, and I’ve been very pleased with the Audyssey, that makes a clear improvement.

      The one area that I’m not so impressed with, and I guess it’s no surprise, is stereo performance. The speakers I’m using are AVI DM5 2-way active bookshelf speakers and I know from using them in a pure stereo configuration driven straight off a variable volume source like a Sonos Connect, that they are seriously capable performers. But going through the Denon (with Sonos connected via optical) whilst far from bad, the whole thing sounds a lot softer and generally less realistic.

      What I’d like to do is see if I can find a second hand AV pre/pro and sacrifice some mod cons, for some serious music credentials. The idea is to try it out and see which on balance I prefer, selling on the loser. My minimum requirements on the video side are HDMI inputs compatible with DTS-HD-MA and Dolby TrueHD (v 1.3?), so that I can connect the secondary output from my Oppo 203 for best audio, other sources can connect via optical/coax and video sources can all go directly to the TV. Audyssey or similar a bonus. Budget ~£500.

      Any suggestions?
       
    14. High Fidelity

      High Fidelity
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      I recommend Yamaha Aventage 1070 AVR
       
    15. Rambles

      Rambles
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      I recommend keeping your Denon for movies and getting a separate amplifier / pre-amp for music. If you get one with HT bypass you can connect the AVR pre-outs to it for easier integration into your system.

      However, you mention that you have an Oppo 105, which I believe has its own volume control? In that case you could use that as the pre-amp for music, and use the AVR as the pre-amp for movies, use your active speakers as the power amp, so all that's missing is a switch. Something like a monitor controller so that you can switch your active speakers between the Oppo's input for music and the AVR pre-outs for movies.
       
    16. DT79

      DT79
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      Thanks for the replies. I ended up taking a punt on a second hand Arcam AV8 and running the Oppo into that via multichannel analogue and everything else directly to the AV8 via optical/coax. So far sound wise it’s a dramatic improvement, but the dynamic range on blu-rays is so insanely large that, whilst undeniably amazing, as it stands I’d only ever be able to watch a film if I was the only one in the house! Also having a few teething troubles using the Oppo for ARC from the TV.
       
    17. Mark.Yudkin

      Mark.Yudkin
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      That's essentially how I'm using my AV9 with my Oppo UDP-205.

      Although I don't have ARC issues, I preferred running the TV to the AV9 over digital coax, as this gave me access to the AV9's digital processing functionality. Since ARC can only transfer SD audio, there is no "codec quality issue" involved in not using it.
       

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