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Lex MC12 or Tag AV192R

Discussion in 'AV Pre-Amp/Processors & Power Amps' started by Mark Ward, May 13, 2002.

  1. Mark Ward

    Mark Ward
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    In another thread I mentioned my next target was a Lex MC1 but my object of desire was the MC-12

    Plump Replied:-
    Right now what appeals to me most about the Lex is Logic7, I've a few friends with Lex's and they all listen to most sources using L7.

    I can't see me ever getting an MC-12, but the MC1 is just about achievable for me.

    As far as the TagAV192R goes... What is it's list price? What does it offer that the Lex doesn't? I've listened to an AV32R against an MC1 and the Lex wins for me.

    This is all a bit academic at the moment as I don't currently have the money for either, but I like to know what to lust after :D

    mark.
     
  2. alanrob

    alanrob
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    Get the Tag (even an AV32R) as you will be able to upgrade later to the full spec AV192R if you want, or just add the bits you require.

    The Tag gear will never have to be replaced as they constantly supply software and hardware upgrades to their kit. This ensures that your investment is more long term than any other AV kit on the market.

    Even if you had bought a day one AV32R it is still easily upgraded to the current full spec (DAB / DPL2 / 7.1 etc....) Visit Tag's site - www.tagmclarenaudio.com for all the info you require about current and future upgrades to all Tag's kit.

    I always say to people that if they can afford to get an amp in price range of the Av32r then they have no option (IMO) but to buy the Tag. It has it all. And whatever the future holds you can be safe in the knowledge that you want get left behind.
     
  3. Plump

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    OK, let's poke the bear . . .
    I am an AV32 owner, so guess can't be totaly under no influence here, but I have to speak here.

    (The following story hits "cost no object" area. I can not afford most of it but let's predict I could).
    Here is my logic. Lex is big daddy of all those processors. And it's processing capabilities are huge. But I'd still buy Meridian if it was about processing modes for PCM signal. TAG has only TMS5 (and TMS7 if you have EX model) but it is one fine mode. Believe me, no big necessarity for anything more. If positive than Meridian! His modes have better concept than Lexicons. On the other hand Meridian forces the choice of their active speakers. I have never heard DSP800 speakers but I do not want active speakers. Fullstop!!! If this than TAG! And that's why TAG! And not only because of that, they entered AV processing in its' roots. They will have full video switching, full video processing with de-interlacer and scaler and still will take care about the stereo performace as much as possible. And as the sugar on the top they have the best support on the globe which seems not slowing down (as most predicted) with increased number of owners. And they are nice people too! And they give us nice toys, making upgrades all the times, reading their site with good forum etc etc.
    Also if you talk about comparing pure stereo performance I bet no one can spot any difference. Maybe Mozart could, but he's dead for centuries.
    That's why!

    Consider moving towards Huntigdon Mark

    Cheers
    Kastrup
     
  4. Nic Rhodes

    Nic Rhodes
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    As all of you will know I am a devoted Udo follower but the MC12 is one serious bit of kit, capable of doing things the AV192 can't do and vica versa. The MC1 missed the plot somewhat IMO especially with Tag at half the price but the MC12 is a whole new ball game. Lexicon are just about there with the software as well (2 years?). Don't underestimate what this baby can do if you have the money.
     
  5. Charlie Whitehouse

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    NOT TRUE! I'm no Meridian expert, but the 861 will definitely allow analogue outputs to be fed to your favourite power amp/passive speaker choice.

    TAG are not the only company to provide upgradeability. Theta Digital have been in the business rather longer than TAG. They may take a bit longer to come up with the latest software updates, but their kit is likely to outlast most of the competition. :p
     
  6. Big Jim

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    I doubt that somehow...
     
  7. Plump

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    Noone said the opposite. Of course you might use pre-outs but the feeling you're loosing something in that case is there. If they already have full digital path thru then it is shame not to get use of it!
    It's a great kit, as well as Lexicon MC12 is but here down on the earth I would always choose TAG processor, if nothing else then because it gives me the most fun! (Guess Rhodes agrees here)

    But noone forbids you to go the other way if you fancy it , that's what hifi is all about.

    Cheers
     
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    Mark

    just to say that if you look at various sites in the US (eg. e-bay) slightly used MC12's are going for c.$6000.

    SH no Duty or VAT plus all Lexicon processors have universal power supplies so importing one is not a problem. You probably know this anyway.

    If you need Home Cinema only, and can put up with average music replay, nothing can beat a Lexicon IMHO.

    TAG's new baby is very interesting, but somehow I doubt it will have the same magic. L7 is just so cinematic
     
  9. Mark Ward

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    Hi Airwise
    That's really interesting. Are you sure there's no Duty or VAT on importing secondhand equipment?

    This would definitely be an option for me.

    Thanks!

    Mark.
     
  10. alanrob

    alanrob
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    If you get the person that sells the unit to you to mark the package as a gift then it shouldn't have any import duty.

    But I wouldn't want to risk spending that amount of money on a second hand piece of kit and hope that it arrives in one piece from the USA.
     
  11. Couch Potato

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    You could ship it insured and it shouldn't be prohibitively expensive, my Stewart Screen was about $120 to ship as insured.

    If it comes with the original packaging as well it should be ok.

    I dont think private purchases attract VAT I would have thought the same applies to import duty, worth a call to Customs & Excise though.

    Steve
     
  12. Couch Potato

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    I called C&E and I was wrong, it would attract Import duty and VAT

    "Any import into the E.C. whether by a private or a business attracts Import Duty and VAT, the import duty is dependant on its Commodity Code"

    The commodity code for AV Pre-Amps is 8543899599 and attracts an import duty of 3.7% then VAT is applied.

    If anybody needs the number the Classification helpline is 01702 366077

    Spot the person who's bored!!!!

    Hope this helps
    Steve
     
  13. Plump

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    see Mark, it all went off topic again. . .
     
  14. Mark Ward

    Mark Ward
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    Hi Couch.

    I called C&E Today and must have asked precisely the same questions as you (I had a slow day too).

    Same answers as well, I also got the commodity codes for speakers as well, but I've gone & left them at work!

    4.5% Duty on Speakers BTW.

    Plump
    Nah! not really, after all we're still talking about the MC12, just importing it fron the US. Figures do seem to add up on this.

    Mark.
     
  15. Couch Potato

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    Mark,

    Just a word of caution, check that the waranty is global and transferable, I had a problem with my screen and it took a while to resolve (although shipping an MC12 back to the States is a bit easier than a 7' Screen :p )

    Other than that it looks like it could be viable!!

    Steve
     
  16. Charlie Whitehouse

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    Greetings from the planet THARG.....

    Clearly my translator podule is malfunctioninginngngning but I thought I was just quoting what you said PLUMP...:D

    :eek: :eek:
     
  17. garmtz

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    I think it's a matter of taste and belief in a manufacturers concepts. I admire Theta and Meridian for their ultimate upgradeability and think having a card-based platforum is a pretty smart idea. In this light, I don't see the AV192R in quite the same category, but would compare it with the Lexicon MC-12, because both are not card-based. The advantages of a completely card-based design are obvious: the unit will almost never be outdated (but I doubt if the 10.2 architecture, the analog/digital 5.1 ch input, the provision for a future digital interface for DVD-Audio/SACD and possibility to use 12 Sharc DSPs of the MC-12 will not be enough to accomodate pretty much anything in the foreseeable future. But I might be wrong...)
    and you have the possibility to pay only for the things you need.

    I chose the Lexicon MC-12 after comparing long and hard with the Meridian 861. I shortlisted these 2 processors, because both brands have the best proprietary surround steering for 7-channels setups. I simply loved the Trifield mode, but I think the Misic Logic mode (a variance on Logic-7, tailored for music) of the Lexicon is as good (or nearly as good) with music. With movies, there is simply nothing better than Logic-7 in my opinion. The superior steering is still way past anything of any other manufacturer. In stereo mode, there WAS a difference between the two: the Meridian sounds more laid-back and "intellectual", with extremely refined highs, the Lexicon sounded extremely neutral and a bit more dynamic and upfront. This difference was also apparant playing movies. I liked the presentation of the Lexicon better. I have also listened to the Tag, and from what I can remember, it has a character somewhat in between the Meridian and Lex. By the way, don't let anyone tell you that the Lexicon MC-12 performance with music is "o.k.". It's brilliant, and admittedly a step up from the MC-1.

    When I didn't have a 7-channel setup and didn't listen to music in surround, I might have included both Tag McLaren and Theta in my short list.

    Another reason I chose Lexicon, was it's great support. Updates are very fast and very reliable and the Lexicon DC-1 I used to own was up to date untill last year or so. Being up to date for 5 years is a pretty good job for a surround processor! But I think Tag McLaren support is also great and they are very fast with upgrades. Meridian and Theta are pretty slow with upgrades, but both their reputations are good.

    I would not buy such an expensive processor in the States without consulting the UK distributor if they would support an imported unit.

    Maybe Stuart also has some things to say. I know he has also chosen the Lexicon MC-12.
     
  18. Plump

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    Me too, it is definitely the best music mode for more channels.

    The only thing I found pretty funny is that Trifield sounded great in the midrange (upsampled) and in stereo it sounded more natural in the midrange to me without upsampling. bit strange but there must be some logical explanation for this.

    Cheers
     
  19. garmtz

    garmtz
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    Hmmm... I don't have the same experience with upsampling on the 861. To me, all upsampled modes sounded a bit more airy and defnition improved ever so slightly. The sound had more "flow". This effect was the same on all modes, if memory serves me correctly.
     
  20. uncle eric

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    Garmtz,
    You have a nice set-up. Your Mitsubishi is one of the best (if not THE best) 7" CRT's out there. Are they still in production?
    I also notice, you have a Cinematrix moded 7700. Was this done by my good friend Frank Doorhof?

    Regards
    Eric
     
  21. garmtz

    garmtz
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    Thanks!
    I agree... :)
    No, production has stopped pretty recently. That's why I have been able to buy one new for a very good price.
    Yep, it was... :) Frank happens to be a very good friend of mine as well... He also sold me the Mitsubishi! :D
     
  22. uncle eric

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    Garmtz,
    Give Frank my regards.

    Best Wishes
    Eric
     
  23. garmtz

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  24. Nic Rhodes

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    Garmtz

    Good post and interesting stuff. It is nice to see good honest reasons for picking the kit you have. The MC12 is great, it is what the MC1 should have been.

    I must also say I am also a TriField fan and wish more people would implement it. With SHARC technology Trifield / logic 7 could eadily be added to the likes of Tag / Denons / Lexicons. I have question Tag on this but they aren't interested.

    Welcome to the club.
     
  25. garmtz

    garmtz
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    Thanks Nic for your positive comments! Uncle Eric, you're greetings are returned! Frank said you were a nice guy... ;)

    The problem is I think in the use of proprietary surround modes and their trademarks/patents/licenses. Tag will probably not licence TM Surround, Meridian will probably not license Trifield and Lexicon will probably not license Logic-7 (only to Harman/Kardon, but both belong to the Harman Group). Maybe they are trying to protect their market/products and I can't blame them.
     
  26. Nic Rhodes

    Nic Rhodes
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    I can understand L7 and TMS but my understanding is that Meridian only licence Trifield. They are the only people in domestic audio but there are a few pro licences. Personally I think all are missing the point some what, this is software, add ons etc. It is just more money to be made. Tag owners aren't going to change to Lexicon but they would pay £100 and switch on the option, just like they did with PL2. Easy money IMHO. I think some have missed the plot on this. If Trifield was administered by DTS or DD, don't you think it would suceed? This is what MLP / PL2 guys have done, rather sucessfully!
     
  27. garmtz

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    You are probably right, but don't forget how stubborn some manufacturers can be! I know for a fact that Jim Fosgate tried to get Lexicon to license L7 for use as/the basis of DPLII. I however don't know the exact reason why this was declined by Lexicon.
     
  28. Stuart M. Robinson

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    Guys,

    I guess I have one advantage over most; being about to play with just about any surround processor at home, with my own gear and without any dealer pressure.

    Off the top of my head, with apologies to anything missed, I’ve recently listened to the TAG AV32R, Meridian 586, Theta Casanova, Lexicon MC-1, Lexicon MC-12, Krell HTS II, ADA Cinema Reference, ADA Cinema Rhapsody and gear from Linn, Thule, Primare, Myryad and others not quite in the same league.

    Logic 7 is the stand-out technology on the Lexicons, but so is the user-interface and flexibility. Their product support and upgrade history is excellent. Folks just got DTS Neo:6 as a free-of-charge software patch. The MC-12 sounds phenomenal in multi-channel mode and wonderful as a two-channel (and multi-channel) analogue pre-amp. Anyone who thinks otherwise has never listened to one. So far all the MC-12 reviews mention its analogue bypass modes as being a huge bonus (A/D is also available even with 5.1 sources). As Garmt mentioned, the processing potential is huge, and we know the likes of the 960L 'DSP' algorithms and room-correction (not to be confused with simple EQ) are coming soon.

    Next on my list would be the Meridian. Like Lexicon they’re pushing the boundaries of digital technology by developing their own processing modes etc. Their up-sampling schemes and TriField being two examples (by-the-way it is possible to upsample in the MC-12). The user-interface can be tricky though and even hardened HT nuts might find it a bit daunting. It's usually best to get a dealer to set one up, at least to begin with.

    The Theta sounds fantastic with 44.1kHz CD material and it’s got a dazzling array of crossovers if your system is a difficult one. The ADA gear has great Dolby Digital modes – they perform dialnorm in the analogue domain – but both lose out to the TAG in the upgrade, engineering and value stakes. Let’s face it; the TAG has a huge price advantage over the Lexicon, which counts for a lot.

    I’ve got an MC-12, largely because it does everything I need to a very high standard. If I switched to another manufacturer/model I’d end up missing out on something, and at this point I’m not about to make sacrifices.


    Stuart M. Robinson
    SMR Group – http://www.smr-group.co.uk/
     
  29. uncle eric

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    I completely agree. I've recently listened to the TAG, Theta, Meridian, Proceed and Anthem just to confirm my feeling for the MC12 prior to making a decision to use this in an upcoming install.

    While some may do certain things a notch better than the Lex, my feelings are that its the best all rounder on the market so far.

    Eric
     
  30. garmtz

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    Eric, Stuart, couldn't agree more with both of you! :)

    A few question for Stuart though.


    Could you elaborate how soon and what exactly will be the ins and outs? Or should I read this on the SMR Lexicon Forum... ? ;)
    I know the MC-12 can output an "upsampled" signal from its digital outputs, but is this real upsampling? Not just bit stuffing + sample rate conversion?
    Says it all... :)
     

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