Multi channel for Arcam A85

Discussion in 'AV Receivers & Amplifiers' started by rettah, May 6, 2002.

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  1. rettah

    rettah
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    Anyone know when the multi channel module will be available and what this will do? I'm looking to upgrade to surround sound and would like to know if it's worth hanging on for this option or purchasing a seperate receiver.
     
  2. baileych

    baileych
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    I don't think it's available (?).

    Not the answer you're looking for but...

    I think that the Arcam A85 is a great stereo amp and I wouldn't risk putting in any upgrade without serious consideration. Surely it would add noise? extra load on power supply?

    Also you don't get much choice - it's Arcam's module or nothing. Don't get me wrong - I love Arcam's stuff. The last three components I've bought have all been Arcam.

    In my opinion, the most flexible arrangement - assuming you want to keep the A85 the centre of the your stereo and surrond system - is to get a surround receiver and put it in the tape/processor loop.

    (Step 1) Then you keep the A85 for stereo inputs and have the option of using the tape loop to add DTS:Neo6, Dolby Prologic I/II etc. processing when required.

    (Step 2) At a later stage you can add the matching P85/3 to power the other channels (or P85/3 + P85 if you want 7 speaker surround).

    (Step 3) The next upgrade would be a processor (Arcam's new FMJ one, a TAG AV32R or whatever).

    (Step 4) By this stage the A85 and P85s are probably the weak points in the system so you buy a THX certified power amps and have the A85 free for your 'second' system...

    OK, so I've only done step 1 but I'm definitely considering step 2 and dreaming about step 3...

    Sorry, this probably isn't very helpful but I've enjoyed listing my dreams... ;)

    Charles.
     
  3. rettah

    rettah
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    Thank you for your reply, a few good points raised there.

    It was my understanding that the multi channel mod would also require the P85/3 power amp for the added channels.

    One of the options I was considering was a seperate receiver but using the A85 to power the front channels. If I do this do I just need to connect the pre outs,from the receiver, to one of the inputs on the A85? Are there any issues with output/input levels in doing this? If I go down this route I would probably not spend too much on the surround side of things as I listen 10:1 to Hi Fi:DVD. Much as I would love to get some FMJ/Tag kit I think Denon/Marantz is more in my budget range(At present).
     
  4. PJONG

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    I have the more modest A75 sibling amp connected to a Yamaha receiver (I'm assuming here that the better A85 has similar facilities).

    The receiver's fronts pre-out is connected via analogue phono 's to the A75's AV/DVD input. The 75's Tape/AV processor button held for 5 secs fixes the gain on the incoming signal from the Yam therefore bypassing the 75's own volume control. All I did then was balance the fronts with the rest of the speakers using the receiver's test tone and spl meter and that was it. When switching back to 2 channel the volume returns to that on the 75 so no fiddling about with two volume controls!
     
  5. baileych

    baileych
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    Yes, you can use the A85's menu to choose a fixed volume level for the proc/tape loop input (so long as you have software version >2.0). Putting the receiver in the proc/tape loop then means you can choose to pass any stereo inputs to the receiver for Prologic etc. processing or listen to the input in straight stereo.

    Switching to tape/processor on the A85 and a digital input on the receiver lets you use the A85 to power the fronts in a Dolby Digital or dts environment.

    It's really easy to set up and there are no volume level problems once you set up the levels on the receiver.

    See these threads for more info (don't feel like typing it all again :)).

    About some small quirks in the 2.1 software and using an Arcam receiver:
    http://www.avforums.com/forums/showthread.php?s=&threadid=33673

    Some info about the A85 software versions:
    http://www.avforums.com/forums/showthread.php?s=&threadid=36147

    Charles.
     

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