A/V Receivers for Distribution - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 7 Old 11-22-2013, 04:08 PM - Thread Starter
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Hello,

Looking for feedback for A/V distribution.
We have 13 zones.
7 of them with video and the other 6 are audio only.

I have a component video distribution system now with digi5 for audio, I want to upgrade to HDMI and a better/different control system, i.e. pro control with their remote controls and iPad minis mounted in wall to control A/V.
I was thinking of using HDMI splitters from sources to 7, 2 zone A/V network receivers, (all in a rack) the main zone connected to each TV and zone 2 to an audio zone.
Source to splitter to receiver, out to TV via extender with IR for TV control.
I realize the quantity of HDMI cables but want to avoid the high cost of an 8x8 HDMI matrix switcher.
Pro Control offers an inexpensive control system with remote controls for video zones and using iOS to control audio with meta data feedback....

Has anyone done a system like this.
I realize in the past this was done for audio distribution until multi room became affordable.

Thanks.
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post #2 of 7 Old 11-22-2013, 08:53 PM
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No receivers I'm aware of down convert HDMI audio to zone 2 of their output, so you would need to also run RCA analog audio from all your sources to the A/V receivers, and you would need to split that audio 6 ways for your 6 audio zones.

I'm not sure what receivers you are looking at, but you can get a 8x8 HDMI matrix switcher for under $2,000 which is not exactly a ton of money...

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?gclid=CJ3C-PyN-roCFdBlOgodWxsAEg&Item=0R2-0050-00087&nm_mc=KNC-GoogleAdwords&cm_mmc=KNC-GoogleAdwords-_-pla-_-Signal+Routing+%26+Distributions-_-0R2-0050-00087&ef_id=7NZOs2iBPloAAAAn:20131123045044:s

EACH source you have will need a 1x8 HDMI distribution amplifier, and I'm not sure if you've priced those suckers out, but the cheap ones from Monoprice are $80 a pop...
http://www.monoprice.com/Product?c_id=101&cp_id=10113&cs_id=1011308&p_id=8205&seq=1&format=2

I just don't know if what you are suggesting really is less money than getting a 8x8 HDMI matrix from Gefen and pairing it up appropriately with your room needs.

AV Integrated - Theater, whole house audio, and technology installation in the Washington DC metro area.
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post #3 of 7 Old 11-25-2013, 05:02 PM
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Yuck! That sounds like a recipe for disaster. Do it the right way--8x8 HDMI matrix and 16x16 audio matrix. The few hundred dollars you might save won't make up for your headaches.
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post #4 of 7 Old 11-27-2013, 06:18 PM
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What a mess. Forget what you are thinking look at Nuvo or on the cheaper side Sonos for your audio. They are true multi zone systems.

HDMI can't be split you need to use a matrix switch there is a handshake that has to happen 1 source to 1 end point. You can thank the government for there copyrights on that one. HDMI switches have some computers and logic to trick the source to use to multipal displays a splitter will not do.

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post #5 of 7 Old 11-28-2013, 01:28 PM
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rmml

How many Video Sources?

'I want to upgrade to HDMI ' - some would argue against the 'upgrade' and stick with your analogue HD distribution system!

Multi-zone AVR's - as others have said tend to fail to deliver on the promise.

'and a better/different control system' - what is it you wish to achieve with the change?

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post #6 of 7 Old 11-28-2013, 04:21 PM - Thread Starter
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Thank you for being so negative about the receiver set up!smile.gif
I've decided to stay with my component system after all. I've done a lot of reading recently and am happy to keep my original system.
My reason to upgrade was to distribute ATV and 3 cable boxes, that said I ordered an HDMI to component adapter on line for the ATV(figured for under $100 if it worked great if it didn't, it didn't) and it works great.
I think HDbaseT is the way to go, so I'll be reading more about this option and then decide if the money is worth it.
So just going to find a decent control system to operate the audio and video a little more smoothly.
I've been using Harmony products which are okay for watching TV, but not for controlling audio with meta data.



Cheers
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post #7 of 7 Old 11-28-2013, 08:57 PM
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There is certainly a lot to think about and, unfortunately, pricing is still fairly high.

I've looked into it and the Gefen Tookbox 8x8 HDMI matrix is about $1,700 online.

Add to that up to 8 local sources and some HDMI cables (cheap).

Then each remote TV location can get a direct HDMI cable if the distance is okay and you can run a cable.

Or, add up to 8 HDBaseT extenders from Monoprice for $200 a pop.

It's $1,600 to get 8 TV destinations, plus the $1,700 but it's still a fair bit less expensive than any integrated system I've seen so far and leaves you the versatility to change out your switcher or replace extenders as necessary.

I will say, as negative as I feel about some kludgy solution using a bunch of A/V receivers, it certainly may get away from the lowest common denominator issue, provides amplification to all in-ceiling/in-wall speakers, and gives up to 16 zones of audio amplification for what may have ended up being a fair price overall for all that would have been involved.

Still, the headaches that exist with HDMI make me worry more for your sanity than anything else. I feel, rather strongly, that you would have found the whole setup to be nothing short of a major disaster.

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