The incoherent ramblings of a mad AV fool

DartonDave

Active Member
History

In the summer of 2009, I bought a significant upgrade to my starter home cinema gear. Purchased predominantly through 1 supplier I bought the kit that was winning all the awards, and particularly in terms of the TV, I bought the TV everyone was after.

12 years later the kit is still going strong and still delivering great quality in terms of sound and vision. It will probably keep going for at least another 12!

I bought a Pioneer Kuro 600A plasma tv, a Pioneer SC Lx81 amplifier, pioneer lx08 blu ray player, and a 5.1 speaker system that consisted of Tannoy Revolution DC6T floor standers, a DC6 centre channel, two tannoy rear speakers attached to the rear walls which I can’t for the life of me remember the name of, but lifestyle type products (there is no room for speakers which have to go on the floor at the rear), and a sunfire hrs-12 subwoofer, which is a gorgeous little thing that bangs out 1000w.and can really rumble.

In the past 12 years I have added and taken away for various reasons, amongst other things a Harman Kardon stereo amp and cd player, a Sonos unit, Sky box and a sky hd box but the basic setup mentioned above has stayed the same. Current inputs are now a Manhattan Freeview box, Nvidia shield (I use it for accessing Netflix, amazon prime, and Kodi (which in turn access my ripped dvd’s and blu-rays which are stored on a NAS drive)), original lx08 blu ray player (which rarely gets an outing), and a PS4.

Off the top of my head, in 2009 I spent about £10k on my current set up.

The kit is set up in my living room and although I have thought about additional speakers, there is very little room to put anything else, without it cluttering up the room. Several times I thought about another subwoofer. I could just about squeeze another one in, if its small and compact like the Sunfire. I did think of 2 additional speakers to give a 7.1 system. But to be honest there’s no space on the walls without it looking stupid. When Atmos came long I thought about ceiling speakers but long story short pulling up the floorboards above the room and/or digging channels into the walls is a nightmare scenario. I am having a sparky come soon to fit some LED ceiling lights so may ask him how easy it would be, but I suspect not very.

When LG brought out the OLED TV my interest was piqued as it looked like something that could supersede the plasma for picture quality. However, there was always something ahead of a new TV in the competition for my cash.

When 4k hit the market, I was again starting to feel ‘I need one of these’ but the appetite to upgrade wasn’t that great.

Maybe like many of you I would often price up killer systems thinking if I had the money, I would buy this amp, this projector, and these speakers. Then look at the telephone number at the bottom of total price and think maybe I’ll just keep doing the lottery. I’m the same with cars. Bought my current one, brand new, 10 years ago and its fine but I do keep pricing up chunks of metal that I just don’t have the money for. It’s nice to dream, eh?.
During my ‘dreams’ I would often covet the Anthem amps. I’ve never heard one but read lots of reviews and was very impressed with the Anthem Room Correction stories.

Current day

TV


So that’s the history. Move to current day and. I really do fancy a new 4k TV (don’t see the point in 8k TV’s in the home). A projector just wouldn’t work. As I type this post the LG OLED C1 is arguably the latest and greatest (I’m sure in 6 months there will be something else which is better) and I started to justify the purchase of one to myself. I was pretty set on what TV I was going to buy. The 65” C1 seemed to be the one. Although I would as always do my research.

Amplification

Now allow me to take you on a tour of my logical but sometimes chaotic brain. A journey where it’s a constant battle of heart over head or vice-versa.

I know that my current Amp is only capable of passing HD signal not 4K so I need a new amp too. Right so I need a ‘4k’ amp and a 4K TV.

65” will be fine. I don’t want smaller. That would be a downgrade. 65” is probably bigger than what I have anyway as the kuro has a big bezel all the way around it. I would like to hear the anthems and the MRX740 was the one that I initially thought would be a good match. Ohhhh, and I know I don’t use it much but I would also need a 4k blu ray player. Good ones are pretty cheap these days, not like when I bought mine. Mmmmm…what about my speakers? Having upgraded everything will the amp be too good for the speakers? Probably not. They are decent speakers. But maybe?

I want something that will be significantly better than what I have. No point spending say £10k on a system if it’s only going to be 10% better than what I already have. At this stage I had no budget. Like my previous dream system rambles, I just wanted to know if I want significantly better, how much will that cost me? I didn’t want to put a monetary ceiling on it as that might make me, make compromises which couldn’t be undone cheaply. Then again, I’m not made of money so there has to be a limit. I just don’t know what it is yet. I would rather save up and wait than buy something now that’s not as good as it could be.

While researching the Anthem amps I changed tact. Two things made me do this
1) The AVM70 was getting A LOT of positive press so I started to think you know what it would make a lot more sense and be a better-quality system if instead of an integrated amp I went with a pre-processor (like the AVM70) and at least 1 power amp. The more I read the more I was intent on having 2 boxes.

2) Hold on, the Anthems whilst no doubt brilliant seem to have been released with more than a few bugs in the ARC software which I believe at the time of writing still haven’t been fixed. And holy cow. An AVM 70 and a MCA525 isn’t cheap.

So I started to look at other pre/power combinations and a few others caught my eye.

I like the thought of pre and power coming from same stable, so I matched them up accordingly.

Although I said I only have room for a 5.1 system, who knows I may suddenly find room for those additional speakers. Hey what about in-wall speakers? Mmmm…Something else to research.

Currently I have a list of 4. Here it is, and the pros and cons of each amp as I see them. Appreciate it’s not comprehensive.

Anthem AVM70 and MCA525. (£7100)

Pros:

Ignoring the cost, probably best in group if they get ARC working

Even with a poorly ARC system it prob sounds excellent.

I can’t afford Lyngdorf so as good as I could prob afford

Cons

Very Expensive (circa £7k). Can I really justify £7k?

ARC doesn’t work

5 channel power amp. Ok for what I have but If I add more channels, I need another power amp which is even more money.

There’s a lead time.

Monolith HTP-1 and 7 channel power amp ($5700+)

Pros

Amazing reviews

Cheap for what you get

7-channel power amp

Uses DIRAC

Cons

Only available in America. Due in UK in 2022 (I asked) but not definite

If purchased from USA additional cost in shipping and taxes. What about warranty?

Small additional cost for DIRAC microphone (£120?)

Emotiva XMC-2 and XPA-9 (£5400)

Pros

Very good reviews. Sounded similar to other amps in this list.

9-channel power amp

Cons

Forums seem to be full of owners whinging about the company and its post sales service

Marantz AV7706 and MM8077 (£3800)

Pros

Very good reviews

Cheapest option by some margin

Potentially best value for money

No negative reviews

Cons

Not as good quality as other (more expensive) options?

Odyssey room correction software not as good as ARC or DIRAC



Summary of Amp logic

if money was no object and the anthem didn’t have the ARC issues, I would get that one. I think!

Being a Yorkshire man, money is always an issue and if I could pick the best solution for the best money, I think it would be the monolith, but you can’t buy them yet in the UK. Seems an amazing combo. Do I wait until next year?

The Marantz really appeals to me, as it seems like a lot of processing power for the money. From what I’ve read it’s not quite as good as the other pre/pro combos, but it is very good. The room correction software isn’t as good. But it’s also not far off half the price of the Anthem. The fact that I am comparing it with systems all costing far more says it’s a great choice.
The Emotiva probably comes 4th. Looks like an excellent product but the negative user feedback makes me cautious, and the other combos look better. Either better quality or better VFM.



4K Blu Ray Player

After that I need a 4k blu ray player. These don’t seem like much of a dilemma. £300 would appear to get you a very good one these days. Maybe the Panasonic DP-UB820EB? Problem solved. Move on.



Speakers

So, I am now at the stage of saying Ok I have chosen my TV and a matching combo of pre-amp and power amp (well one of four). Even a 4k player. Is that it? Are the existing speakers in the system now the weak link? If so, how much would I need to spend so they are as good as the amps driving them, and crucially better than what I already have?

If the answer, is they will be ok, but you could do better, even if it’s a stage 2 purchase, I started looking at other home cinema speaker packages and at what would I need to spend to improve what I have.

When I look at speakers, I usually start with I need a very good stereo pair for listening to music on, then build on that by adding a matching centre channel then adding the surrounds and possibly an additional matching sub (loathe to lose my existing Sunfire).

I looked at all sorts from the insanely good but stupidly eye wateringly expensive Kef Reference range, through PMC Twenty5. 26i and multiple M&K variants. For a 5.1 system prices ranged between £36k and £5k.

In the end however two packages catch my eye. And as with the amps there are pros and cons.

  • Monitor Audio (Gold)
  • Klipsch
Package 1 would be

Fronts: MA Gold 300 floor standers @£4400

Centre: MA Gold C250 £1200

Rears: MA Gold FX at £1870

Sub: (optional) Gold W12 sub at £2300 (maybe too large)

Approx. £9.8k with sub or £7.4k without)

Pros

Look stunning. Really stunning.

Great reviews (although not many of them)

Cons

Still expensive. Do I need to spend this much to hear an improvement on my Tannoys?

Sub looks large



Package 2 would be some individually selected Klipsch speakers

Fronts: Klipsch RF-7 III @£3600

Centre: Klipsch RC-64C III @ £1350

Rears: Klipsch RP-502S @ £825

Sub (optional) no idea but assume I buy another sunfire at say £1500

Approx. £7.2 k with sub and £5.8K without.

Pros

Look nice but nowhere near as nice as the MA’s

In terms of VFM this seems fantastic VFM

Cons

The front floor standers are enormous. Really enormous. Maybe too large for the room. Maybe…



Back to the TV


Final spanner in the works (aka latest change in direction)

I’m in Costco on Sunday and I often just glance at the TVs on display. Costco don’t often have the latest and greatest in, but I like to peruse.

I noticed 2 LG models which looked stunning. I’m sure they were being fed a 4k demo disc with all the processing turned on. But that aside the picture looked breath taking. I checked out the models. There was a 65” C1 and a 77” C1. The 77” looked so much better than the 65. Oh god I wanted it.

The 65 was on offer for another 2 days for £2100. £400 less than list and the beautiful 77” was £3200 down from £3600 (also £400). My brain quickly started doing emergency calculations.

If I get this 77” for £3200 and then buy the Marantz pre/pro for £3800, that’s £7k. Can I afford that? Do I want to spend that? I don’t need new speakers yet. I don’t need a new blu ray player yet. I don’t need another sub. I wonder how much I would get for my KRP600 and LX81 amp?

In the end I didn’t do it. I rarely impulse buy and thought they will reduce again, at some point. Don’t buy something without thinking it through, right?



Conclusion (pull it all together)

So, not sure of timings but my thoughts are before the year is out, I believe I will buy.

Stage-1

LG OLED 77 C1 – for say £3000ish

Marantz AV7706 and MM8077. For £3800. Whilst not ‘cheap’, the price just seems to shout far better VFM.

(optional) 4k Blu-Ray Player: Panasonic DP-UB820EB - £300.

Total Cost Circa £7100



Then next year or later…

Stage 2

Buy another Sunfire hrs-12 sub. Circa £1500. Hopefully less.

Stage 3

If needed, get the Klipsch speakers without sub (just got to get my head around the enormous and very heavy front speakers) for £5.7K

Stage 2 and 3 Total cost circa: £7.2k

Total Cost Circa £14.3k. Hopefully less.

I hope to offset it by selling some of my old kit although other than the Kuro I doubt I would get a lot for it.

I have absolutely no idea what I expect you to do with any of this information I have blasted you with. If you’ve read the entire post by the way without skipping, well done sir (or madam).

I think my biggest concern is the pre/power combo. Would spending more money get me much better?

Maybe you could empathise with my journey or maybe you have suggestions I haven’t considered. Surely, I can’t be the only one who goes through this decision anguish? Although I’m sure no one reading this waits 12 years between upgrading like I have.

Either way thanks for reading.
 

Dobbyisfree

Well-known Member
Hi, that was an interesting read. I hope you don't mind me sharing my honest views on your potential plan.
To me, it seems like too big of a leap. One of the benefits of slow and gradual upgrades is that once and upgrade level is reached, and you don't hear much difference to the last one, then you know that doesn't need upgrading any further.
My concern is that you spend a WHOPPING amount of money on a setup that you don't actually need.
Obviously, all of this is up to you, but if you asked me I would consider taking it more gradually. So, go to 4k first with TV, a supporting AVR and BR player. See how that goes first.
 

ShanePJ

Well-known Member
AVForums Sponsor
In twelve years, amplification has come of age with far better room correction system, TV's have also moved forward to over that period (but you must look at OLED as this is the natural progression to your Plasma) Again, with the right amplification, (5.1.4), the sound tracks are far more involved than before (but do be aware of upward firing speakers as these seem to be the weakest for enjoyment from many peoples comments).

The Speakers you own are still reasonable and with an upgrade with both the amp and blu-ray, you should hear new life in them. But if you do move to the Anthem's, then they will become the weaker link. One way to get more life out of them is to just upgrade the woofer to one that matches the output and performance of the Anthems (which means looking for one with good stop start ability and plenty of head room). The TV sounds like you have found it and if you enjoy what it looks like, if the have a demo unit, see if you can tether it to your phones wifi and stream so content from the BBC so you get a real idea what it looks like under standard HD/SD footage (as I doubt they will have an option to do that in store)

As the engine of your system is getting on a bit with age, I feel the advice of getting the TV/Blu-ray together (the Blu-ray will have dual HDMI out, so you will just have to pipe the sound down to the amp via the sub out and full fat HDMI signal to the TV) is good and then you can look at Anthem once you've settled, Now you may feel the pre-power option is the right way, but even then the 1140 will still show you Pioneer where it was lacking as they are very special

As for updating the speakers, my advice would be to look at a few once the showrooms open fully so you can really experience whats on offer. Tannoy have a very distinctive sound and not many speakers are able to recreate what they have to offer, especially where clarity is important (hence why I mentioned looking at the woofer/s)

Hope this gives you more of an option going forward to create the right system for another 12 years
 

DartonDave

Active Member
Hi, that was an interesting read. I hope you don't mind me sharing my honest views on your potential plan.
To me, it seems like too big of a leap. One of the benefits of slow and gradual upgrades is that once and upgrade level is reached, and you don't hear much difference to the last one, then you know that doesn't need upgrading any further.
My concern is that you spend a WHOPPING amount of money on a setup that you don't actually need.
Obviously, all of this is up to you, but if you asked me I would consider taking it more gradually. So, go to 4k first with TV, a supporting AVR and BR player. See how that goes first.
Thank you very much for the response. I thought I had bored people to death with the history but I didn't just want to say is product X better than product Y, so tried to provide context.
You have grasped what I was trying to say. If I'm upgrading it has to sound and look notably better. Not if I squint or listen really carefully I can see and hear slight differences. In an ideal world I would just replace the TV first. Then wait. But I've waited so long my HD stuff is almost obsolete :) so I need at least an amp at the same time. I couldn't actually afford £14k (yes I would shop around) all at once anyway. Its why I said stage 1, 2 and 3. Black Friday or whatever its called must be coming up soon right? Thank you again for replying.
 

Dobbyisfree

Well-known Member
Quite different with AVRs etc at the moment, it is the polar opposite of Black Friday and it is a seller's market. So perhaps @ShanePJ has a good idea to do TV and 4k BR first with the same AVR and speakers as your step 1.
Don't forget that, if you go for AVR first, most middle upwards in the range have pre-outs. So, you can use them as a pre-amp if you feel the need for more amplification. And that is a step towards a pre/pro arrangement.
But you may end up with a decent AVR, feel like its much better than what you have (especially if you go Atmos and add a 2nd sub) and not upgrade at all!
 

Baron Mole

Active Member
As the engine of your system is getting on a bit with age, I feel the advice of getting the TV/Blu-ray together (the Blu-ray will have dual HDMI out, so you will just have to pipe the sound down to the amp via the sub out and full fat HDMI signal to the TV) is good and then you can look at Anthem once you've settled, Now you may feel the pre-power option is the right way, but even then the 1140 will still show you Pioneer where it was lacking as they are very special
Mr Pedant here. Think I've spotted a typo - I think it should read via the HDMI audio out, if that's an feasible option with the LX81. If not there's always the multi-channel analogue outs.

I don't know much about the Shield - will that be the main 4K source along with the new BR ?

Although it might be a bit of a cable-fest, I'm wondering if the Shield could be hooked up like the BR player - one connection to TV for the video and one to LX81 for audio ?

Gives you a lovely 4K TV and time to audition an AVR or whatever. Or you could throw caution to the winds and buy the 1140 from Shane, there's one in stock, and return it if you didn't like it. :) I've used AVonline and always been very happy with them - and they're a site sponsor.
 

Baron Mole

Active Member
Another thought - if you do decide to go down a Processor/ Poweramp road, the cost could be spread by getting the processor and using the LX81 as amp.

Forgot to mention that AVF members get a discount from site sponsors - a call to Shane might be helpful.
 

Dobbyisfree

Well-known Member
I don't know much about the Shield - will that be the main 4K source along with the new BR ?

Surely when you spend 3 grand on a TV, it includes all the streaming support you need? My 4K 65" was £550, a 2020 model, and even it does most streaming (and plays a surprising number of different formats from USB or network too).
I have a Shield Pro only because the TV doesn't have eARC, so the Shield gives me Atmos, and because the TV doesn't have Disney+.
 

DartonDave

Active Member
In twelve years, amplification has come of age with far better room correction system, TV's have also moved forward to over that period (but you must look at OLED as this is the natural progression to your Plasma) Again, with the right amplification, (5.1.4), the sound tracks are far more involved than before (but do be aware of upward firing speakers as these seem to be the weakest for enjoyment from many peoples comments).

The Speakers you own are still reasonable and with an upgrade with both the amp and blu-ray, you should hear new life in them. But if you do move to the Anthem's, then they will become the weaker link. One way to get more life out of them is to just upgrade the woofer to one that matches the output and performance of the Anthems (which means looking for one with good stop start ability and plenty of head room). The TV sounds like you have found it and if you enjoy what it looks like, if the have a demo unit, see if you can tether it to your phones wifi and stream so content from the BBC so you get a real idea what it looks like under standard HD/SD footage (as I doubt they will have an option to do that in store)

As the engine of your system is getting on a bit with age, I feel the advice of getting the TV/Blu-ray together (the Blu-ray will have dual HDMI out, so you will just have to pipe the sound down to the amp via the sub out and full fat HDMI signal to the TV) is good and then you can look at Anthem once you've settled, Now you may feel the pre-power option is the right way, but even then the 1140 will still show you Pioneer where it was lacking as they are very special

As for updating the speakers, my advice would be to look at a few once the showrooms open fully so you can really experience whats on offer. Tannoy have a very distinctive sound and not many speakers are able to recreate what they have to offer, especially where clarity is important (hence why I mentioned looking at the woofer/s)

Hope this gives you more of an option going forward to create the right system for another 12 years
Many thanks for the reply. This is exactly the kind of guidance I hoped I would get. Challenging me on assumptions I make and the approach and logic I am using. Weirdly I was on your web site last night tentatively pricing up different products. I had dismissed any kind of Atmos speakers as I thought it would be far too much hassle to install ceiling speakers. Looking at it again, this could well be an option. So a 5.1.4 or 5.2.4 system could be something that makes a lot of difference. I'm not sold on upward firing speakers at all.

Thanks for the speaker advice. Its good to know that my assumptions were correct. The tannoys will be ok and still do a reasonable job but a much better amp will mean they are the weakest link. Although my living room isn't tiny, it isn't massive either (circa 21' x 11' at its widest points) there is a brick chimney breast and 2 settees which take up a lot of room so theses not much room to put large ugly subwoofers in. I'm not saying I wouldn't. Just that I'm restricted about where they can physically go. I guess I could demo 2 x sunfire's V 1 sub of an other make to see what sounds best with whatever amp I decide to go with. From what you are saying it sounds like you are suggesting 1 better sub would be better than 2 subs of the same type I currently have?
When actually buying the equipment I would prefer somewhere where I can actually demo the kit, trying different options, but its good to have a shortlist :) I know I cant do that in Costco.

So let me para-phrase your 3rd paragraph so I understand what you are saying. I could buy the 4k TV and a blu ray player at the same time. Keep the pioner amp (for now). Use the HDMI outs on the player. send one to my existing pioneer amp and one straight to the TV so if watching films on the player I would use the TV's internal speakers, not the tannoys? Not sure I follow that. How will the system know which of the two hdmi out's to use? Apologies I'm being thick.

Its good to know you think highly of the 1140. I would need to listed to it. I like the term "very special". I'm just a bit put off by recent negative reviews of poorly implemented ARC software and recent poor customer service.
Again I would need to listen and compare to the anthem but I keep seeing good reviews of the Marantz AVM7706 with perhaps a Emotiva XPA Gen3 3 channel power amp for front 3 speakers and maybe a 6 channel one for rear surrounds and atmos)

And I know I'm comparing a £3900 product (still a lot) with one costing £5700 (2500+1300+1900).

Whatever I go with, speakers can come later as you say.

Are demo rooms still shut down then? I'm in no rush. I can wait. I had hoped after so called freedom day we might have a bit more...freedom. But I wont get political :)

Thank you again for taking the time to reply and your very helpful response.
 

ShanePJ

Well-known Member
AVForums Sponsor
So let me para-phrase your 3rd paragraph so I understand what you are saying. I could buy the 4k TV and a blu ray player at the same time. Keep the pioner amp (for now). Use the HDMI outs on the player. send one to my existing pioneer amp and one straight to the TV so if watching films on the player I would use the TV's internal speakers, not the tannoys? Not sure I follow that. How will the system know which of the two hdmi out's to use? Apologies I'm being thick.
When watching 4k movies, the better blu-ray players have dual HDMI outputs. The MAIN HDMI output is to send a 4K signal to the TV and the Sub HDMI is to send HDMI audio sound tracks to older amps enabling you to enjoy 4k visually without having to use the Optical output from the TV (So that input would just replace the LX08 HDMI connection.

For the TV side, yes you'll have to switch between the TV HDMI inputs when watching 4k and anything else via the amp as the TV will require two HDMI inputs, one for the 4k blu-ray player and the other which you use today to connect the TV and AVR together.

The other side for the interim period whilst this is going on will require to you connect an Optical from the new TV to access broadcasts and streaming content.

Once you've completed the AVR and TV pairing, you'll then be able to revert back to one single HDMI connect which be labeled eARC. This will allow almost everything to work between the TV and AVR regardless of whether its coming from the TV or 4K being transmitted to the TV via the new AVR

The original MRX700 which the 1140 replaces was a very exciting amp and certainly had the measure of your trusty 81 in my opinion. I did however feel it was lacking in the musical format as it wanted to set the sub up for music and I felt this was always its poor point as it always wanted to push the woofer a little to much for my liking, but thankfully this has been resolved with much more calibration and ability from those early days

Now with you mentioning the Marantz and Emotiva, this is really down to personal taste as I've heard people rate each model and dislike others, so that one is going to be a tough one for you to figure out at your end. The only thing I will add about the Marantz is it's a little warmer than the Anthem and could certainly be a more natural pairing

I hope that gives you a little more insight and help in understanding how to work with any new option whilst upgrading the right way without changing everything in one go
 

Dobbyisfree

Well-known Member
Regarding subwoofers, in particular, your one sub/two sub and do I keep my current one questions I would post that query on the Subwoofers thread. I'd post it with a picture of the room layout, showing where seating is, TV and speakers are. Let them know budget. There are some PROPER subwoofer experts on here!

Best to, in your subwoofer post, put a link to this thread to make sure people don't double answer :)
 

DartonDave

Active Member
Mr Pedant here. Think I've spotted a typo - I think it should read via the HDMI audio out, if that's an feasible option with the LX81. If not there's always the multi-channel analogue outs.

I don't know much about the Shield - will that be the main 4K source along with the new BR ?

Although it might be a bit of a cable-fest, I'm wondering if the Shield could be hooked up like the BR player - one connection to TV for the video and one to LX81 for audio ?

Gives you a lovely 4K TV and time to audition an AVR or whatever. Or you could throw caution to the winds and buy the 1140 from Shane, there's one in stock, and return it if you didn't like it. :) I've used AVonline and always been very happy with them - and they're a site sponsor.

Another thought - if you do decide to go down a Processor/ Poweramp road, the cost could be spread by getting the processor and using the LX81 as amp.

Forgot to mention that AVF members get a discount from site sponsors - a call to Shane might be helpful.
Thanks for the feedback.
To be honest my existing plasma is nothing but a monitor. It has a built in tuner but its rubbish and I've never used it. There are no built in speakers. And so all my inputs are separate boxes. Outputs are my HC speakers. I bought the shield so I could replicate some kind of smart TV technology.
I ripped all my blu rays and dvd's to a NAS and use Kodi (via the shield) to watch them, I also access Netflix And Amazon prime via the shield. And very occasionally Spotify, YouTube and an IPTV service.
I had overlooked that modern TV's have Netfix and Amazon prime built in. I have a Manhattan freeview box which I also rarely watch. 80% of the stuff I watch is Netflix.
I do look forward to buying some (overpriced) 4k blu ray discs and watching those, and learning how to rip those to the NAS (another thread maybe at a later date).

By the way if I could buy a TV with no internal speakers for say £100 less I would.

Another good point, using the LX81 as a makeshift power-amp. Thanks

I think a call to Shane may be on the agenda :)
 

DartonDave

Active Member
Surely when you spend 3 grand on a TV, it includes all the streaming support you need? My 4K 65" was £550, a 2020 model, and even it does most streaming (and plays a surprising number of different formats from USB or network too).
I have a Shield Pro only because the TV doesn't have eARC, so the Shield gives me Atmos, and because the TV doesn't have Disney+.
Yes I would expect a modern 4k TV to have most if not all of the required streaming services.

When I bought my plasma I cant remember if it was £1600 or £2600 (I think the former), but I remember thinking I must be mad. I will never spend that kind of cash on a TV ever again......

And here i am....
 

DartonDave

Active Member
Regarding subwoofers, in particular, your one sub/two sub and do I keep my current one questions I would post that query on the Subwoofers thread. I'd post it with a picture of the room layout, showing where seating is, TV and speakers are. Let them know budget. There are some PROPER subwoofer experts on here!

Best to, in your subwoofer post, put a link to this thread to make sure people don't double answer :)
Thanks I will
 

Dobbyisfree

Well-known Member
That's why we had an 2014 LG 50" plasma, went to Currys and looked around. Went OMG we thought we needed OLED etc, but saw a 65" Toshiba LED for £549 and bought that.
Whilst I agree that "OLED is the modern equivalent of plasma" that means it is the best you can buy.
In our case, we thought we wanted an OLED but we didn't need it, the Tosh is massively better than the LG it replaced so it was enough. It has much deeper colours, darker blacks, better contrast, much brighter brightts oh and of course 4 times as many pixels 🤣
I'd rather go with that theory, i.e. "get much better than you had", not necessarily "get the best" particularly with TVs, which are an item that is (a) worth about £1.49 a year after owning it and (b) two years after owning it, it will cost £549 to get a 75" or bigger with better screen technology too.
 

DartonDave

Active Member
When watching 4k movies, the better blu-ray players have dual HDMI outputs. The MAIN HDMI output is to send a 4K signal to the TV and the Sub HDMI is to send HDMI audio sound tracks to older amps enabling you to enjoy 4k visually without having to use the Optical output from the TV (So that input would just replace the LX08 HDMI connection.

For the TV side, yes you'll have to switch between the TV HDMI inputs when watching 4k and anything else via the amp as the TV will require two HDMI inputs, one for the 4k blu-ray player and the other which you use today to connect the TV and AVR together.

The other side for the interim period whilst this is going on will require to you connect an Optical from the new TV to access broadcasts and streaming content.

Once you've completed the AVR and TV pairing, you'll then be able to revert back to one single HDMI connect which be labeled eARC. This will allow almost everything to work between the TV and AVR regardless of whether its coming from the TV or 4K being transmitted to the TV via the new AVR

The original MRX700 which the 1140 replaces was a very exciting amp and certainly had the measure of your trusty 81 in my opinion. I did however feel it was lacking in the musical format as it wanted to set the sub up for music and I felt this was always its poor point as it always wanted to push the woofer a little to much for my liking, but thankfully this has been resolved with much more calibration and ability from those early days

Now with you mentioning the Marantz and Emotiva, this is really down to personal taste as I've heard people rate each model and dislike others, so that one is going to be a tough one for you to figure out at your end. The only thing I will add about the Marantz is it's a little warmer than the Anthem and could certainly be a more natural pairing

I hope that gives you a little more insight and help in understanding how to work with any new option whilst upgrading the right way without changing everything in one go
Ah right. So one cable for Video and one for Audio. The video one would give me 4K video while the audio one would give me 1K audio via my existing amp and speakers?

I used to have a similar arrangement with one of my sky boxes before they got it sorted. An optical cable I think it was for audio. HDMI for video.

Yeah that sounds like a good stage 1 approach.

I think I do need to demo these amps. Do you offer those facilities yet?

I wont bore you with the detail but I do like my sound to be on the warmer side of neutral. Not a fan of bright sounding equipment.
 

DartonDave

Active Member
That's why we had an 2014 LG 50" plasma, went to Currys and looked around. Went OMG we thought we needed OLED etc, but saw a 65" Toshiba LED for £549 and bought that.
Whilst I agree that "OLED is the modern equivalent of plasma" that means it is the best you can buy.
In our case, we thought we wanted an OLED but we didn't need it, the Tosh is massively better than the LG it replaced so it was enough. It has much deeper colours, darker blacks, better contrast, much brighter brightts oh and of course 4 times as many pixels 🤣
I'd rather go with that theory, i.e. "get much better than you had", not necessarily "get the best" particularly with TVs, which are an item that is (a) worth about £1.49 a year after owning it and (b) two years after owning it, it will cost £549 to get a 75" or bigger with better screen technology too.
Good points. Like most people I can get suckered in by a good marketing campaign.
 

ShanePJ

Well-known Member
AVForums Sponsor
Ah right. So one cable for Video and one for Audio. The video one would give me 4K video while the audio one would give me 1K audio via my existing amp and speakers?

I used to have a similar arrangement with one of my sky boxes before they got it sorted. An optical cable I think it was for audio. HDMI for video.

Yeah that sounds like a good stage 1 approach.

I think I do need to demo these amps. Do you offer those facilities yet?

I wont bore you with the detail but I do like my sound to be on the warmer side of neutral. Not a fan of bright sounding equipment.
I'd say, give the showroom a call as I'm not sure whats available as yet in the room
 

Dobbyisfree

Well-known Member
It's each to his/her own. Personally, my wife and I both felt that OLEDs made things look "a bit like a cartoon" but we could be old fashioned!
It tooks us weeks to adjust to the 65" we got as it is. We felt, for example, it made acting look much worse, it made scenes look worse and more fake. All in all, some films at first we struggled to watch!
I'd just say have a look yourself at the TVs :)
 

ShanePJ

Well-known Member
AVForums Sponsor
We felt, for example, it made acting look much worse, it made scenes look worse and more fake
Ha, I don't think you can blame that on the TV, its definitely real life with all the dribble on TV at the moment, but seriously the better the TV the better it will show you the imperfections, its the nature of the beast. I'd say its also important when you go big to look at calibrating the TV like you would do a projector in order to get the skin tones plus colours/contrast/black detail right to really make your TV shine. You would be amazed at how poor a good quality TV picture can look if its poorly calibrated or the standard settings are poor. I've seen it so many times
 

AmericanAudio

Well-known Member
AVForums Sponsor
The advice you are getting here and specifically from Shane is on the money, I am just going to add the you are right the Monolith is due to Europe next year, but we really don't know 'when' next year.

Chatting to Monoprice directly in the USA, the issue (as with all AVR's at the moment) is supply and specifically of the DAC's. All that are made go straight to the US and are sold in the blink of an eye.

So depending on the stages of your upgrade, I would discount it for the time being and you really won't go wrong with any of the others.
 

Baron Mole

Active Member
I'd say its also important when you go big to look at calibrating the TV like you would do a projector in order to get the skin tones plus colours/contrast/black detail right to really make your TV shine.
Yes, I'd forgotten about that. Some TVs are great out of the box using say the movie preset. Others not so much. It costs a few hundred quid IIRC. I'd also suggest you pay attention to motion handling on the new TV which is especially important if you watch sport but even if you don't. You're used to plasma which generally handles motion very well - ghosting can be an issue on many LED based sets.
 

Baron Mole

Active Member
One other thought - plasmas age and the picture goes a bit darker - if you're anything like me I set and forget. Try increasing contrast and brightness a bit on your Kuro. I've one of the last Panny Plasmas from 2015 and that has aged.
 

Gasp3621

Distinguished Member
One way to get more life out of them is to just upgrade the woofer to one that matches the output and performance of the Anthems (which means looking for one with good stop start ability and plenty of head room).

Did you read which sub he has as that is strange comment? :) While there is newer designs these days i don`t think the Sunfire HRS12 is poor as they surely have knowledge how to build good woofers. Sealed 12" with 1000w rms amp and your company is selling it too for 1239£. If he can place the 2nd sub optimally then adding 2nd identical would make sense and as we see all the time here with members duals are the way go. I think the new Anthem same as Audussey in Marantz will eq them individually (set levels & distance= delay for each) so example diagonally opposite front/rear could be option, in most cases it offers smoothest response and zero localization and two HRS = lots of headroom with lower distortion!


 

ShanePJ

Well-known Member
AVForums Sponsor
Its just the Anthem and to be honest, the Tannoy's together will be quite pacy and dynamic creating a system which will have a lot of stop start ability making it quite the performer for impact films and music and if the subwoofer cannot keep up, it will create a miss match which slows the system down creating an unwanted effect which I feel will happen once the system is pushed

As for the Sunfire, I don't feel it's a slouch and I also think its an excellent partner to most Speaker/AVR combinations, I just think its going to be out performed and its weakest will show before the Tannoy's once the Anthem is in place

However, I would also like to I feel it will @DartonDave who will be making final decision when hearing the components together. If he hears what I expect, then he will move the Sunfire on and get something more inline with the other components, If however he enjoys it, I'm sure he will keep the Sunfire and that's how it should be when buying any new toy. Trust your own ears and eyes and ignore everyone else including me and especially many reviewers as they hear what they want just like I hate slow bass which shows its self when things are crashing and banging with a slower bass than you know could be had because the other products are just faster. I say its like having poor tyres on a car, in the dry it's be great, but in the wet, its feel a bit slidy and unenjoyable :)
 

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