Lexicon's new MC-14, what's the scoop, a re-badged Bryston? - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 54 Old 01-13-2014, 01:36 PM - Thread Starter
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I just stumbled onto some info from Harman that they will be releasing a SSP this April for $10,500 US called the MC-14. Anyone see this at CES? It doesn't sound very impressive from the what I can see in the press info on their website, http://www.lexicon.com/News/Story/133

I guess the big question is, is this a rebadged Bryston SP3, just like JBL is doing? I see no mention of Logic 7 let alone Quantum Logic and it appears to be limited to 7.1. Definitely not cutting edge stuff like we would expect of the Lexicon of years past.

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post #2 of 54 Old 01-13-2014, 02:05 PM
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http://www.avsforum.com/t/1510093/the-unofficial-ces-2014-thread-for-20k-hangers-lurkers/30#post_24196962

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post #3 of 54 Old 01-13-2014, 02:48 PM - Thread Starter
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post #4 of 54 Old 02-21-2014, 05:22 AM
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Think it is safe to say Lexicon is dead, not looking like they are ever going to produce a modern NEW Pre/Pro like previous MC models.
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post #5 of 54 Old 03-27-2014, 01:35 AM
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Wow.

IMHO this is a step DOWN from the MC-12HDEQ in most ways. No automatic room equalization/EQ DSP daughterboard, no Logic7, no multiple-sub outputs, less setup/input flexibility...

Other than decoding the new audio formats (which my BD player does and sends as 7.1 LPCM - and which I'd rather have my BD player do anyway)...what does this add? It certainly takes away a few things. frown.gif

I'd MUCH rather keep my MC-12BHDEQ.

I could add an outboard video processor / scaler / switcher that supports 4K, and even a high-end analog preamp with bypass (like one of the Parasounds) for music...and be WAY ahead in flexibility and features - and likely on par (or better) in sound quality all things considered (e.g. when room EQ is factored in).

It would be a tiny bit more complicated with three components instead of one - but overall it would be several thousand dollars cheaper, better in many ways, and more future-proof than "upgrading" to the MC14.
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post #6 of 54 Old 03-27-2014, 10:18 AM
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Originally Posted by DiscCollector View Post

IMHO this is a step DOWN from the MC-12HDEQ in most ways. No automatic room equalization/EQ DSP daughterboard, no Logic7, no multiple-sub outputs, less setup/input flexibility...
Indeed, rather than letting the brand fade away, Harman is keeping the Lexicon label alive by doing the opposite of what they historically specialized in (i.e., for a brand that used to come up with their own leading edge surround processing, the MC-14 offers decade-old surround processing licensed from other companies).

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post #7 of 54 Old 03-27-2014, 05:28 PM
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Originally Posted by sdurani View Post

Indeed, rather than letting the brand fade away, Harman is keeping the Lexicon label alive by doing the opposite of what they historically specialized in (i.e., for a brand that used to come up with their own leading edge surround processing, the MC-14 offers decade-old surround processing licensed from other companies).

Sad, as they were cutting edge back in the day. But then again, so was the Palm Pilot.
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post #8 of 54 Old 03-27-2014, 07:12 PM
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Harman obviously are thinking about things differently. I think the need for a new pre-pro came from the Synthesis side, and since all the magic happens in the separate DSP box I guess they did the math and worked out it wasn't worth the money to develop a new pre-pro as they wouldn't sell enough units to make it worthwhile.

The MC12 is a PITA to set up due to the vast number of settings. I'm sure even their dealers screwed up a lot of installs. I did a calibration on one the other day and the limiter on the LFE had been set by the dealer to 75dB, and the client was wondering for all these years why there was no bass (and he's had the MC12 for a long time!).

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post #9 of 54 Old 03-27-2014, 08:57 PM
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Originally Posted by Nyal Mellor View Post

I think the need for a new pre-pro came from the Synthesis side, and since all the magic happens in the separate DSP box I guess they did the math and worked out it wasn't worth the money to develop a new pre-pro as they wouldn't sell enough units to make it worthwhile.
Unfortunately, the separate DSP box does room correction, not surround processing. And that's fine for the Synthesis branded version, but makes no sense for the Lexicon label (considering what that company specialized in historically). A better fit would have been their Levinson brand.
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The MC12 is a PITA to set up due to the vast number of settings. I'm sure even their dealers screwed up a lot of installs. I did a calibration on one the other day and the limiter on the LFE had been set by the dealer to 75dB, and the client was wondering for all these years why there was no bass (and he's had the MC12 for a long time!).
We have different experiences setting up a MC-12. For calibration, I spread 4 mics across my couch, push a button on the remote and walk away. The subwoofer limiter is set to Off by default. No reason to touch it unless your subs are bottoming out. Most of the other vast number of settings can also be left to their defaults. The Logic7 modes do allow users to adjust parameters in order to tailor the surround processing to their taste. I wouldn't consider that flexibility a PITA. YMMV.

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post #10 of 54 Old 03-28-2014, 09:16 AM
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Originally Posted by sdurani View Post

Unfortunately, the separate DSP box does room correction, not surround processing. And that's fine for the Synthesis branded version, but makes no sense for the Lexicon label (considering what that company specialized in historically). A better fit would have been their Levinson brand.
We have different experiences setting up a MC-12. For calibration, I spread 4 mics across my couch, push a button on the remote and walk away. The subwoofer limiter is set to Off by default. No reason to touch it unless your subs are bottoming out. Most of the other vast number of settings can also be left to their defaults. The Logic7 modes do allow users to adjust parameters in order to tailor the surround processing to their taste. I wouldn't consider that flexibility a PITA. YMMV.

We did not use the auto room EQ, we used an outboard EQ. I probably should have done a factory reset (if such a thing is possible) before I started calibrating the unit! Lesson learned for next time.

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post #11 of 54 Old 03-28-2014, 06:46 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sdurani View Post

We have different experiences setting up a MC-12. For calibration, I spread 4 mics across my couch, push a button on the remote and walk away. The subwoofer limiter is set to Off by default. No reason to touch it unless your subs are bottoming out. Most of the other vast number of settings can also be left to their defaults. The Logic7 modes do allow users to adjust parameters in order to tailor the surround processing to their taste. I wouldn't consider that flexibility a PITA. YMMV.

This has been my experience exactly. I found the MC12 with room EQ simple to set-up, I often wish I had not have sold it.
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post #12 of 54 Old 03-29-2014, 12:01 PM
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If anyone is still interested i have an MC-12HD with EQ and I even have the Lex Mic kit also....for sale. Just PM me....its collecting dust in my HT room.

Works perfect and is in excellent shape.

Thanks
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post #13 of 54 Old 04-07-2014, 06:44 PM
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DiscCollector......I sent you and email.
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post #14 of 54 Old 08-20-2014, 08:39 AM
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Well,after taking a hiatus from the audio hobby for a while to focus on other projects,some interesting new developments in the HT world as of lately.

ATMOS for the home being one for sure!

As far as Lexicon goes,this really is a disappointing turn of events.It seems ever since the Harman stock was "pumped and dumped" after the rumoured possibility of a Goldman Sachs acquisition,the Lexicon brand has really taken a turn for the worse.To call this processor an "MC-14" is kind of an insult to the previous MC and DC series of processors and the engineering team that came before.They should just call it the the HK/HyBrid 14.It doesn't echo any of the leading edge surround innovation that helped make those processors the great products of their day or what could have resulted with the advent of Quantum Logic and the all but vaporware, MP-20.

I don't think HK 'gets' why people bought into those processors in the first place.The MC-14 seems to be geared more towards a minimalist approach with some licensed surround modes thrown in to give the brand a fresh face in the HT world. The price is absurd for the little that it does outside of the norm compared to other brands and it doesn't even look to be upgradeable.It just echo's the same lame attempt when they introduced the MV-5.What are they saving Quantum Logic and their new room correction for? HK receivers?

It would be nice if some of the old LEXICON engineering team started their own brand the way some did on the Professional side with the Bricastri Model 7 reverb processor.They came up with more natural sounding reverb processing than any of the Lex reverb algorithms they helped develop that came before!

Last edited by StevenLansing; 08-20-2014 at 08:54 AM.
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post #15 of 54 Old 08-20-2014, 01:17 PM
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Originally Posted by StevenLansing View Post
I don't think HK 'gets' why people bought into those processors in the first place.
Right, most Lexicon owners I know bought their surround processors for the surround processing. If Harman wanted to re-badge a Bryston, it would have made more sense to do it under their Mark Levinson brand, with all the minimalist audiophile sensebilities that the name implies.

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post #16 of 54 Old 08-20-2014, 01:58 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sdurani View Post
Right, most Lexicon owners I know bought their surround processors for the surround processing. If Harman wanted to re-badge a Bryston, it would have made more sense to do it under their Mark Levinson brand, with all the minimalist audiophile sensebilities that the name implies.
Yup, that what I do. My MC8 is strictly for AC3 and PCM from laser disk rips. I have it modified for AES digital out. Bluray playback goes around it.

IMO, Logic 7 and some of the mono modes are still the best when it comes to 7.1 synthesis. I have compared it to JRivers 7.1 upmix and the Lexicon beats it hands down.

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post #17 of 54 Old 08-20-2014, 08:00 PM
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Yep,I totally agree with you guys. I love the flexibility that the MC-12 algorithms give me to adjust and tweak to individual taste and vary according to source material.That's what the Lexicon brand used to be, a tweakers dream! Those algo's may be dated but still hold their own very well over most everything else (especially on certain material and in some instances are currently the only game in town) except what looks to be coming down the pipeline in the near future. Dirac Unison looks to be very interesting in it's ability to re-create acoustic venues and use Dirac Live room EQ.This may knock HK/Lex algo's off the block including QL.

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post #18 of 54 Old 08-20-2014, 08:47 PM
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Hello everybody
Has the MC-14 actually been released? Are there any reviews?
I agree that Lexicon has turned for the worse, but was hoping that the MC-14 is stellar like the previous processors. I have an MC8B and love it, but im in the market for a new processor.
Can anyone tell me what a competitive processor that is available on the market? I hate to leave Lex, but may have to.

Thank you

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post #19 of 54 Old 08-20-2014, 08:54 PM
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It hasn't been released yet and I don't think there are any reviews.
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post #20 of 54 Old 08-20-2014, 09:40 PM
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Dirac Unison looks to be very interesting in it's ability to re-create acoustic venues and use Dirac Live room EQ.This may knock HK/Lex algo's off the block including QL.
Dirac Unison is for mode cancellation, like a double bass array, not surround processing like L7 and QL.

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post #21 of 54 Old 08-21-2014, 05:22 AM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
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Hello everybody
Has the MC-14 actually been released? Are there any reviews?
...

Thank you

Rob
If looking for reviews just start with all of the Bryston SP3 reviews as that's what this processor is. If you like the reviews perhaps it makes more sense to actually get the Bryston as those units will be the first to receive any possible future firmware updates I would think plus it might be a bit cheaper.

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post #22 of 54 Old 08-21-2014, 09:47 AM
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Thanks Rod
Im inclined to think your right. I just compared the rear panels of mc-14 and bryston SP3 and there the same. I wont be getting the MC-14 unless the guts are different. I wont be getting a Bryston SP3, because of what Harmon is trying to pull off with the MC-14.

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post #23 of 54 Old 08-21-2014, 05:42 PM
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I purchased my MC-8 for auto azimuth, something no other SSP maker did in the day (and something no longer needed with digital.)

Yes, I still have the capability of playing surround from LaserDisc. ;-)
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post #24 of 54 Old 08-21-2014, 08:36 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sdurani View Post
Dirac Unison is for mode cancellation, like a double bass array, not surround processing like L7 and QL.
When I read this it gave me the impression that Unison also was capable of re-creating acoustic spaces/environments as well.

http://www.whatsbestforum.com/showth...7-Dirac-Unison


In the new XC90, the software has been used to re-create the exact acoustic qualities of Gothenburg Concert Hall, located in Volvo’s home town and home to the Gothenburg Symphony Orchestra, the National Orchestra of Sweden. A simple change in the centre touch screen that controls all the car’s features and the system will immediately alter its settings to mirror this concert hall, a recording studio or a stage.

“It took some 800 individual measurements in the Gothenburg Concert Hall before we captured the true richness of the acoustics,” said Mr Adenauer. “When it comes to the Studio Mode, it offers a precise and dry listening environment, similar to that which a recording engineer experiences in a studio. The Individual Stage mode offers the opportunity to control your position in a virtual venue through the innovative use of two sliders called ‘envelope’ and ‘intensity’. With these sliders you can move close to the stage, be surrounded by the musicians or place yourself out in the audience.”



Something I thought might put it in competition with something like L7,QL and past ambiance/reverb algo's that Lex developed to extract or recreate an acoustic space/environment. Even though it doesn't really generate an effect like the Lex reverb/ambiance type of algo's . I also mistakenly mentioned Dirac live,when I should have just said 'Dirac room correction',since Unison isn't the same type of correction.I had Dirac Live on the brain when I was typing it.
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post #25 of 54 Old 08-21-2014, 09:10 PM
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Quote:
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When I read this it gave me the impression that Unison also was capable of re-creating acoustic spaces/environments as well.
There is a blurb at their website which describes what was demonstrated to me at CES earlier this year:

"Dirac Unison uses acoustic measurements to create an active acoustic treatment of the listening space. The technology jointly optimizes the loudspeakers and features a completely new kind of bass management, which is automatically matched to the room and the loudspeakers. With Dirac Unison, the loudspeakers and room act cohesively rather than as individual elements that interfere with each other."

Each speaker in the demo was turned into active room treatment for cancelling modal activity below 500Hz. Maybe they have added a reverb generator since then for room simulation.

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post #26 of 54 Old 08-22-2014, 08:36 AM
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I wont be getting a Bryston SP3, because of what Harmon is trying to pull off with the MC-14.
Who is Harmon? Did you per chance mean Harman?
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post #27 of 54 Old 08-22-2014, 08:48 AM
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Yes I meant Harman. Also I believe Bryston is not made by Harman. My mistake Im sorry.

Rob
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post #28 of 54 Old 08-23-2014, 07:13 AM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
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Yes I meant Harman. Also I believe Bryston is not made by Harman. My mistake Im sorry.

Rob
Correct, Bryston has no affiliation with Harman other than Harman has used some of Bryson's products over the years.

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post #29 of 54 Old 08-28-2014, 09:11 AM - Thread Starter
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Anyone know what the going price is for a used MC-12HD with EQ? I see the non HD versions are going for at or below $2k so I figure the HD can't be much off that as it only raised the list price $1k more when it was introduced.

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post #30 of 54 Old 08-31-2014, 09:17 PM
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The HD option will add a decent amount. You cannot just add the upcharge between the two and then discount that. The non-HD versions are not the latest versions and receive a heavy discount because of that. I don't remember the street price for unblanced 12HD w/EQ, sorry.
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