Ayre DX-5 bluray player - Page 21 - AVS Forum
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post #601 of 1442 Old 02-28-2010, 06:44 PM
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Originally Posted by Charles Hansen View Post

(I would have liked to link to the article, but it is buried inside some JavaScript that I can't link to directly.)

Is this the article?

The production version of the eagerly awaited Ayre Acoustics DX-5 Blu-ray-and-everything-else player. This product launch should find favor with both audio- and videophiles alike. The DX-5 will also play 24-bit/192kHz digital music files via its USB input, making the DX-5 a dream machine for those with computer-based audio setups. The exact price of the DX-5 has not been set as of CES 2010. Shipping should begin by late February.

Gorgeous industrial design!

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post #602 of 1442 Old 02-28-2010, 07:54 PM
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Hello Roger,

Yes, that is the article. I didn't link to it directly because it wasn't overly obvious that then the user needed to scroll through the photos at the bottom to get to the correct story. It's not that hard, but I'd rather have a way to go directly there. If there is a way, it's beyond my limited understanding of HTML....

Thanks for the kind words on the cosmetics. The basic industrial design was done by Alex Rasmussen, who has done a lot of fantastic things. The most recent are the new Resolution Audio Cantata components:

http://www.resolutionaudio.com/

(They're on the home page now, but may get moved as time goes on.)

The look is essentially the same as our C-5xeMP, although we reduced the height a bit and added a few more bits such as the USB port, a lens for the IR receiver, and a status LED. (There is supposed to be a plastic plug-in cover over the USB port, which I think is hideous exposed as it is.) It was too nice of a look to change just for the sake of change.
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post #603 of 1442 Old 02-28-2010, 08:34 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Charles Hansen View Post

There have been requests for photos and so forth. We don't have any yet, as we won't schedule a photo shoot until we begin work on the brochure. In the meantime there are a couple of photos online. Stereophile has a picture from CES at:

http://www.soundstagenetwork.com/las...large/ayre.jpg

and SoundStage has a picture at:

http://www.soundstagenetwork.com/las...large/ayre.jpg

(I would have liked to link to the article, but it is buried inside some JavaScript that I can't link to directly.)

Finally, here is a drawing of the rear panel in PDF format.

Charles,
Thanks for the drawing. It cleared up many of my misconceptions.
I'm still unclear on the 3 USB connections. Are the 2 host USB's (1 front, 1 rear) meant for the same uses as the Oppo's?
Is the 'USB audio connection' below the analog audio connections on the rear the 'QB-9' type connection?

Tom

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Anthem D2v;Anthem A5;Golden Ear Aon3,SuperCenter XL,SuperSat3;SVS SB13 Plus x 2;Oppo BDP-103D;Ayre CX-7eMP;Panasonic plasma; Dish Hopper;PS Audio Power Plant 5- Subject to change without prior notification.
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post #604 of 1442 Old 02-28-2010, 08:56 PM
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Yes, the two host USB connections (one front and one rear) perform identically to those on the Oppo. They can be used with "thumb drives" either to upgrade the firmware or play music files, but only in the same formats supported by the Oppo.

The other USB connector on the rear is to connect the DX-5 to a PC. By using your favorite music player software (eg, iTunes, J.River, Foobar, et cetera), you can turn the DX-5 into a state-of-the-art music server. You can store your music on your computer with all the convenience of playback through playlists, random play, selection of multiple tracks from multiple discs -- the possibilities are endless.

The audio USB input is isolated from both the audio section and the video section with opto-isolators. This keeps the unwanted RFI from the PC out of the system.
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post #605 of 1442 Old 03-01-2010, 07:30 AM
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What does DAO/OFF and DAO/ON mean in the PDF?

Are the analog XLR and RCA outputs simultaneously active? (edit)

Is the top cover extra?

Can one get it in kandy apple red in case they have a matching hot rod?

Thanks.
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post #606 of 1442 Old 03-01-2010, 01:08 PM
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Originally Posted by GGA View Post

What does DAO/OFF and DAO/ON mean in the PDF?

That is "Digital Audio Output" on and off. It turns on and off the AES/EBU connector. If you don't need to use it, the analog audio will sound slightly better if you turn that off. It's kind of like turning the display off, or using the "Pure Audio" mode that turns off both the display and the video circuitry. The less RF noise inside the box, the better the analog will sound.

These are small differences, not huge ones. For example, we also have a "Display Off" function on the C-5xeMP. But I never use it as it just doesn't seem worth the bother to me. But if you are going for the absolute best two-channel analog sound, all the controls are there.

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Are the analog XLR and RCA outputs simultaneously active?

Yes.

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Originally Posted by GGA View Post

Is the top cover extra?

No, you get one free top cover with every unit you purchase....

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Can one get it in kandy apple red in case they have a matching hot rod?

That is a nice looking table! It would be fun to be able to offer that kind of thing.
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post #607 of 1442 Old 03-13-2010, 04:39 PM
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Charles,

I have yet to hear a multi-channel system that gets me enthusiastic enough to want to take my system from 2-channel into multi-channel. My 2-channel system includes an Infocus IN83 1080p projector that is bright enough to use during the day in my great room since I don't have a dedicated music or theater room and a 106-inch screen that is suited to the projector, ambient light and seating positions. It also includes an Anchor Bay DVDO iScan VP50PRO that upconverts the HD cable box signals, the DVD player and the Blu-Ray player to 1080p and feeds it the projector. All video cables are HDMI 1.3 spec.

I would like to replace my C-5xe, Sony Blu-Ray and Exemplar Denon 5910 (maybe) with a DX-5. The projector has only a single HDMI connection (though it is 1.3 compliant), even with the DX-5 I will still have the cable box, so I will need VP50PRO to connect to sources to the projector. Will running the DX-5 into the VP50PRO downgrade the picture quality?
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post #608 of 1442 Old 03-14-2010, 08:57 AM
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Originally Posted by AEM1972LAW View Post

I will need VP50PRO to connect to sources to the projector. Will running the DX-5 into the VP50PRO downgrade the picture quality?

I don't think so.

How's that for a definitive answer?

I really don't know as I haven't tried this kind of thing before. On the one hand, you are adding cables and connectors to the signal path. On the other hand, with digital video, it shouldn't make any difference. On the first hand, the VP50Pro has a big switching power supply to run it, and possibly more internal switchers inside.

The only way to know is to try it out. And there are two ways to try it. One is to let the DX-5 do the scaling and have the VP-50 just do a "pass-through" on the signal. The other way is to set the DX-5 to output the native rate from the disc and let the VP-50 do all of the scaling.

The big advantage of the VP-50 is that it can do all of the oddball resolutions that were popular when plasmas first came out. Nowadays everything does 1920 x 1080, but remember those plasmas that were 1365 x 768 and stuff like that? The VP-50 can scale directly to the native rate of any display. It uses a big FPGA to do the processing, while the DX-5 uses the DVDO (Anchor Bay Technology) chip that is a dedicated processor. The algorithms are the same, but it isn't as flexible as the FPGA used in the VP-50.

So if your projector has a non-standard resolution, it will probably look better with the VP-50 where it just gets scaled once, bypassing the internal scaler on the projector. If your projector has a standard resolution, it will probably look better straight in, although how much better I can't really say.

We are looking at making a video switcher/scaler for situations like yours. I don't know yet if we will do it, so I don't want to say more now -- just that it may be another possibility.
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post #609 of 1442 Old 03-15-2010, 12:49 AM
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Charles,

Thank you for your participation in this forum and others. Your posts are full of information. I admire your design concepts and your attempts to maintain your integrity as you try to navigate your company through choppy high-end waters.

Some people complain about your high prices, but the engineering, parts selection, and American labor costs are reasonable. An economy based upon the Wal-Mart or offshore sweatshop model is not sustainable. At the opposite extreme, the prices of gear from far too many high-end companies have escalated to obscene levels, threatening the continuation of the industry.

The DX-5 embodies several concepts that you have discussed as being superior:
1. Linear power supplies
2. Non-feedback amplification
3. Asynchronous USB digital audio interface
4. Isolation of audio from video
5. DVDO de-interlacing engine.

It is an elegant one-box digital source solution.

What should loyal owners of D-1 and Dx-7 do? They were not designed for today's 1920 x 1080 displays, which appear to be the de facto standard, and I doubt that will change, especially with the world's collapsing derivatives-based economy going forward, despite whatever replacement standard the Japanese majors try to cook up. Most content that is available in DVD will never be available in Blu-ray. You always said a scaler degrades quality compared to the native rate. An analog display can be immune to this, but they are extinct.

There are 2 possible remedies for this:

1. an Ayre outboard scaler with linear power supplies that accepts multiple sources, including SDI from D-1 and Dx-7;

2. upgrade video boards for the D-1 and Dx-7 that provide 1920 x 1080 output over HDMI.

Either remedy should put out 1080p at 24 fps and possibly multiples of 24 fps.

An outboard scaler would have a market. Most videophiles have cable or dish sources, and they would benefit from a quality scaler. D-1 and Dx-7 owners would benefit. And owners of lesser disc players with SDI or HD-SDI output who feel a quality scaler is a more versatile investment than a single source component.

You always said the existing external scalers degrade the signal from your machines because of their switching power supplies. Is there any doubt you are correct?

Count me in as a vote for an Ayre outboard scaler, or at least 1080p upgrade boards for the D-1 and Dx-7.

Thanks again for sharing your insights in this forum.
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post #610 of 1442 Old 03-15-2010, 01:12 PM
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Might as well ask for an update on delivery. I believe the first round is already sold out, so when will the second round be delivered? Thanks!
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post #611 of 1442 Old 03-15-2010, 07:52 PM
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Originally Posted by Steradian View Post

What should loyal owners of D-1 and Dx-7 do? They were not designed for today's 1920 x 1080 displays, which appear to be the de facto standard, and I doubt that will change, especially with the world's collapsing derivatives-based economy going forward, despite whatever replacement standard the Japanese majors try to cook up. Most content that is available in DVD will never be available in Blu-ray. You always said a scaler degrades quality compared to the native rate. An analog display can be immune to this, but they are extinct.

As you correctly note, the market penetration and the number of titles available on Blu-Ray is but a fraction of that on regular DVD. The advantage of Blu-Ray grows with the size of the display. With a 27" screen, it would be difficult for anyone to see a difference at any normal viewing distance. So if you have a display smaller than 50" you may be perfectly happy with a standard-definition DVD player.

However, the DX-5 also has some advantages compared to our previous DVD players -- playback of SACD and DVD-Audio, as well as a USB input to allow your personal computer to act as a state-of-the-art music server.

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1. an Ayre outboard scaler with linear power supplies that accepts multiple sources, including SDI from D-1 and Dx-7;

2. upgrade video boards for the D-1 and Dx-7 that provide 1920 x 1080 output over HDMI.

Either remedy should put out 1080p at 24 fps and possibly multiples of 24 fps.

An outboard scaler would have a market. Most videophiles have cable or dish sources, and they would benefit from a quality scaler. D-1 and Dx-7 owners would benefit. And owners of lesser disc players with SDI or HD-SDI output who feel a quality scaler is a more versatile investment than a single source component.

You always said the existing external scalers degrade the signal from your machines because of their switching power supplies. Is there any doubt you are correct?

Count me in as a vote for an Ayre outboard scaler, or at least 1080p upgrade boards for the D-1 and Dx-7.

If your display is smaller than 50", you probably have no need for a scaler. Furthermore, the built-in scalers in modern displays have continued to improve, so even many large displays will do just fine with their built-in scalers.

If your display is 50" or larger, you really should consider purchasing a Blu-Ray player. In those instances where the title is available on Blu-Ray, the picture quality is noticeably improved on a large screen. You will not achieve this level of picture quality simply by scaling a standard-resolution picture.

We are currently looking at the possibility of making a scaler/switcher, but we have no concrete plans at the moment.
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post #612 of 1442 Old 03-15-2010, 07:56 PM
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Originally Posted by GGA View Post

Might as well ask for an update on delivery. I believe the first round is already sold out, so when will the second round be delivered? Thanks!

While it is true that the first round is spoken for by dealers and distributors, I am not sure that each of those units has been promised to a customer. And I am embarrassed to admit that we haven't started shipping yet. Work is proceeding well, but we underestimated the difficulty of some of the tasks we took on with this project. I would hope that we will start shipping in the next few weeks, but that is just a rough guess. When you are doing something that has never been done before, it's hard to say exactly how long it will take. My apologies for the delay.
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post #613 of 1442 Old 03-15-2010, 08:58 PM
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Charles,

Thanks very much for your reply. I had forgotten that the VP50Pro could be set to pass through a selected source without processing. We had already found the VP50Pro to produce a noticeably better picture than the Anchor Bay processing in the projector. So it will be just be a matter of determining whether the DX-5 straight through or the DX-5 with VP50Pro processing produces the better picture.

I just want to say that I believe I fit one of the profiles for your target market for the DX-5 perfectly. I am into music and movies; I am a confirmed 2-channel guy for both (there are few movies where I find multichannel sound contributes appreciably to the experience and I feel the same way about 3D); vinyl will survive (I have a 1,000 or so LPs) but I don't expect to see much new music issued on vinyl (most of the current vinyl issues of new digital music are not appreciably better than the CDs), but CD is rapidly being replaced by online downloads, so I am eager to move my digital music to a server and play it through the DX-5. I need to free up enough space on my racks to install both the DX-5 and the server components, so I need the DX-5 to replace my C-5xeMP, Exemplar Denon 5910 and my Sony blu ray player. It does not bother me at all that I will not use the HDMI audio output of the DX-5. As an owner of both the C-5 and the K-1xe, and being familiar with the KXR and having heard Steve demonstrate the current prototype DX-5 at Audio Visions South here in Tampa, I know and appreciate how good your designs are and how much intellectual capital, time and effort you put into them. Your products are expensive, but everything in the performance audio world is. Your products are not, IMHO, over-priced as are many components in the performance audio world.

Being a corporate lawyer and not an engineer or a physicist, I struggle to follow just the gist of your discussions, but I trust my ears and my wife's ears even more than mine. So glad you do what you do. Please keep it up.
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post #614 of 1442 Old 03-16-2010, 07:20 AM
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Thanks for the kind words!

As you noted, it will be easy to compare the scaling in the VP-50 Pro with that inside the DX-5. The DX-5 can be set to a "Native Rate" output whereby it will just output the the native rate of the disc. Then the VP-50 will scale it to the native rate of your display. Or you can set the DX-5 to the native rate of your display (assuming that it is one of the standard resolutions -- 720p, 1080i, or 1080p) and set the VP-50 to bypass mode.

Either way should give excellent results, but you will probably slightly prefer one approach over the other. Let us know what you find out. And George and the staff at AV South are ahead of the curve when it comes to computer audio, so they can help you transfer your collection over to your hard drive.
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post #615 of 1442 Old 03-16-2010, 10:05 AM
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When you are doing something that has never been done before, it's hard to say exactly how long it will take. My apologies for the delay.

No need to apologize. Other larger companies have missed their announced release dates by years.

I have not ventured into computer audio yet so my question is probably rather naive. If the DX-5, with its excellent DACs, could be used as a standalone DAC it would give users another option. It is almost there because of the USB input.

All it would need is a SPDIF to USB converter. A quick google showed that no such device exists. They are theoretically possible and seemingly not too difficult to make, but with no perceived demand no one has made one.

What are your thoughts on a standalone SPDIF to USB converter?

I am just thinking of making the DX-5 an even more universal unit for those that have expensive transports they do no wish to give up or that have some device that only has digital out. A DX-7e and a satellite receiver come to mind.

Thanks.
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post #616 of 1442 Old 03-17-2010, 07:28 AM
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Originally Posted by GGA View Post

No need to apologize. Other larger companies have missed their announced release dates by years.

Thanks for cutting us some slack! It turned out to be a much bigger project than we anticipated, especially when we decided to add the USB and the HDMI audio-only output.

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If the DX-5, with its excellent DACs, could be used as a standalone DAC it would give users another option. It is almost there because of the USB input.

A key part of any DAC is a low-jitter master audio clock. This is virtually impossible to attain with S/PDIF. Since we can't get exemplary performance from S/PDIF (nobody can), we decided to leave it off.

The USB input is different because the master clock is in the DAC box, and it sends a signal back up the USB cable telling the computer to speed up and slow down in order to match the speed of the clock in the DAC. This isn't possible with S/PDIF.

You probably have an S/PDIF input on your SSP that is adequate for those sources. The DX-5 will play all if its formats at the absolute highest quality -- CD, SACD, DVD-Audio, DVD, Blu-Ray, and computer audio. Trying to create an S/PDIF to USB converter would lose the advantage of the asynchronous USB format. Read more about it here:

http://www.ayre.com/pdf/Ayre_USB_DAC_White_Paper.pdf
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post #617 of 1442 Old 04-01-2010, 12:40 AM
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Charles,

This might be a little off topic, but in your white paper link, there is the hint that an A/D converter is possible using the TAS1020B with asynchronous USB output. Do you have interest or plans to produce such a device? I think there is a need for an audiophile A/D converter at 88 kHz 24 bits to record analog sources onto hard drives. In the white paper, you describe a number of digital firsts to which Ayre lays claim. An A/D converter with asynchronous USB output could be another first. I'm not sure there is computer software than can accept it, however; if not, the matter is moot. Maybe it could fit inside a half-width case like the QB-9, making the combo a nifty tape loop. Just a thought ...
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post #618 of 1442 Old 04-01-2010, 11:49 AM - Thread Starter
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Charles,

I have told that my dealer got the first lot of DX-5. Wow....I'll get mine soon



Oh...it's April fool's, isn't it


So, what's the exact date for the first shipment?

I can't wait any longer
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post #619 of 1442 Old 04-02-2010, 09:52 AM
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This might be a little off topic, but in your white paper link, there is the hint that an A/D converter is possible using the TAS1020B with asynchronous USB output. Do you have interest or plans to produce such a device?

Yes, that is something we have on our "To-Do" list (along with 6 other products). It's not real high up because we probably won't sell a lot of them, but it also shouldn't take a lot of time to develop it. Maybe by the end of the year???
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post #620 of 1442 Old 04-02-2010, 09:59 AM
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Originally Posted by svirajsilp View Post

Charles,

I have told that my dealer got the first lot of DX-5. Wow....I'll get mine soon



Oh...it's April fool's, isn't it


So, what's the exact date for the first shipment?

I can't wait any longer

Good joke! You had me going....

We've been saying "two more weeks" for the last two months. So I wouldn't take anything I say seriously..... But I really think in two to three weeks we should be shipping the first batches out.

One of the problems that we just found out about last week is that while Apple supports Class 2 Audio (necessary for 192 kHz on the USB connection), it turns out that they only support it up to 96 kHz. I'm not really sure of the point of supporting Class 2 Audio if you only go to 96 kHz, because that is easily accomplished with Class 1 Audio. But we are looking at our options and trying to figure out the solution that will make the most sense for our customers, with the easiest upgrade path.

Like Roseanne Rosannadanna used to say, "If it's not one thing, it's another."

Or like Jeff Rowland always told me, "Manufacturing -- it's a bitch."
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post #621 of 1442 Old 04-02-2010, 10:27 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Charles Hansen View Post

One of the problems that we just found out about last week is that while Apple supports Class 2 Audio (necessary for 192 kHz on the USB connection), it turns out that they only support it up to 96 kHz. I'm not really sure of the point of supporting Class 2 Audio if you only go to 96 kHz, because that is easily accomplished with Class 1 Audio. But we are looking at our options and trying to figure out the solution that will make the most sense for our customers, with the easiest upgrade path.

Why don't you simply ask Apple to expand their support for Class 2 in view of the significant impact that DX-5 sales will have on their bottom line? Or should I have suggested that yesterday?

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post #622 of 1442 Old 04-02-2010, 01:44 PM
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Why don't you simply ask Apple to expand their support for Class 2 in view of the significant impact that DX-5 sales will have on their bottom line? Or should I have suggested that yesterday?

Too bad the DX-5's not already available - this weekend they could have set record sales by including an iPad with purchase.
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post #623 of 1442 Old 04-02-2010, 02:10 PM
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Too bad the DX-5's not already available - this weekend they could have set record sales by including an iPad with purchase.

Great idea. How about a free DX-5 with an iPad?
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post #624 of 1442 Old 04-02-2010, 07:26 PM
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Originally Posted by Kal Rubinson View Post

Why don't you simply ask Apple to expand their support for Class 2 in view of the significant impact that DX-5 sales will have on their bottom line? Or should I have suggested that yesterday?

They're actually looking at doing something fairly soon -- at least that is my understanding. Which is quite surprising to me. I would think that they have a lot bigger problems on their hands than keeping some kooky audiophiles happy. I mean really, how many 192 kHz releases are there? I think there are two or three from 2L in Norway and another two or three from Linn. But all the time we get people criticizing us because our USB connection won't do 192 kHz. Sigh...
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post #625 of 1442 Old 05-01-2010, 08:51 AM
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Close to a release yet?
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post #626 of 1442 Old 05-01-2010, 02:37 PM
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I understand that the DX-5 has started shipping to dealers and international distributors, although I understand the pre-orders are many and it will take some time to get the backlog taken care of. Put in your orders now! Cheers.

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post #627 of 1442 Old 05-29-2010, 01:42 PM
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I just spent a very short time with an early version of the unit with the audio only Hdmi unavailable. Even so, the sound via Hdmi via a Classe SSP800 was far beyond what I have previously heard on Blu-Ray. One of my favorite scenes is at the end of Chapter 5 on U571 where we see and hear dishes and flatware reacting to the rolling of the ship. At one point you can hear a fork drop about 3/4s of the way back on the left. With the Ayre you could tell that the fork was dropped on it's tines, something I was never able to hear before.

I wasn't able to do much more with the unit so please don't bombard me with questions I can't answer.
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post #628 of 1442 Old 05-29-2010, 02:18 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by scottsol View Post

I just spent a very short time with an early version of the unit with the audio only Hdmi unavailable. Even so, the sound via Hdmi via a Classe SSP800 was far beyond what I have previously heard on Blu-Ray. One of my favorite scenes is at the end of Chapter 5 on U571 where we see and hear dishes and flatware reacting to the rolling of the ship. At one point you can hear a fork drop about 3/4s of the way back on the left. With the Ayre you could tell that the fork was dropped on it's tines, something I was never able to hear before.

I wasn't able to do much more with the unit so please don't bombard me with questions I can't answer.


Thanks Scott for that information. I also own the SSP-800 and am very curious as to how much of a sonic improvement this unit has over the Panasonic BD30 when playing back CD's.What player did you compare the DX-5 to? I was hoping that the multi channel playback was up to the task of revealing more information on the discs. I need to replace both my Panny BD30 and Ayre CX-7e CD player for a one box unit!

"Music is my religion"
Jimi Hendrix

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post #629 of 1442 Old 05-29-2010, 03:32 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by scottsol View Post

I just spent a very short time with an early version of the unit with the audio only Hdmi unavailable. Even so, the sound via Hdmi via a Classe SSP800 was far beyond what I have previously heard on Blu-Ray. One of my favorite scenes is at the end of Chapter 5 on U571 where we see and hear dishes and flatware reacting to the rolling of the ship. At one point you can hear a fork drop about 3/4s of the way back on the left. With the Ayre you could tell that the fork was dropped on it's tines, something I was never able to hear before.

I wasn't able to do much more with the unit so please don't bombard me with questions I can't answer.

If it was connected via HDMI the sound difference you are hearing has all to do with the SSP800 and very little to do with the Ayre. Connect any other BD player that can bitstream and you'll hear the same sound. Now if you are connecting it via analog, then that is a different story; however I don't know why you'd use the analog section of a BD player when you are connecting it to an SSP800.
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post #630 of 1442 Old 05-29-2010, 04:49 PM
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The player that is in our setup now is the Marantz BD7004 but we have had a number of units in the system. We have not, however, had the Oppo on which the Ayre is based. BTW the speakers are the Thiel MCS.

While I didn't listen to the analog output, I have no doubt that it will sound considerably better than the CX7e.

Quote:
Originally Posted by LaoChe View Post

If it was connected via HDMI the sound difference you are hearing has all to do with the SSP800 and very little to do with the Ayre.

Our store system has been using an SSP800 via Hdmi for almost two years. Absolutely no changes were made in the setup except for putting in the Ayre. I verified that the DTS Master track was used in all cases and no changes were made to the volume.
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