Any sniffs on the new Halcro Processor? - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 465 Old 02-03-2005, 01:12 PM - Thread Starter
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I've been poking around looking at new processors. I ran across the Halcro in the CES coverage. I went to their site and checked it out. It looks like quite a beauty.

Has anybody heard anything else about this piece? Price? Options? Was it actually connected at the show to be heard?

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post #2 of 465 Old 02-03-2005, 01:31 PM
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2 pieces:
SSP100 4HDMI inputs, LCD screen, $9900US
SSP80 3HDMI inputs, no screen, $7990US

plus amps and universal player.

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post #3 of 465 Old 02-04-2005, 04:38 AM - Thread Starter
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I was actually looking at the 80. I need the balanced outputs. I'm glad to see the price is actually attainable. I was afraid they'd be up there with the DM series amps!

I take it they were just for looks at the show then and not actually working prototypes?

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post #4 of 465 Old 02-04-2005, 06:38 AM
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For the price differential, you might consider the 100.

It adds balanced in for multi-channel, HDMI scaling to 1080p, and the LCD screen too!

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post #5 of 465 Old 02-04-2005, 07:16 AM
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I agree with John, the extra features are well worth the minor premium in the overall picture. Anyone actually heard one of these things yet?

Tom
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post #6 of 465 Old 02-04-2005, 07:32 AM
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Tom:

I missed them at CES, as I ran out of time. I don't know if the demos were static or active of the Logic line.

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post #7 of 465 Old 02-04-2005, 08:14 AM
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Static.

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post #8 of 465 Old 02-04-2005, 08:27 AM
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Looks pretty sweet, and for what it can do that's a surprisingly good price. But I'd sure like to know who they're working with to do video processing (deinterlacing/scaling). True 1080i deinterlacing?

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post #9 of 465 Old 02-04-2005, 08:33 AM
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I asked. No one could tell me. I asked the same questions at CEDIA.

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post #10 of 465 Old 02-04-2005, 08:38 AM - Thread Starter
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That was one of my other thoughts about this. It would be very nice if the built in scaling solution was something flexible enough and good enough to dtich my external scaler. I'd really like something that had selectable / custom output resolutions. I also certainly hope they provide component inputs that will accept both SD and HD on the same inputs! Eventually, HDMI will make that moot but until then, HD cable is a real PITA.

I guess you talked me into at least considering the 100. Although I don't really need either the balanced multi-channel inputs or the 1080p right now, you never know about the future.

What else would be sweet is if the LCD could be offered as an option as a touchscreen with the interface. Then I could use it for also controlling a music server via the GUI.

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post #11 of 465 Old 02-04-2005, 08:45 AM
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Here's the available info.

Kal

 

ssp80-100_specifications.pdf 29.3681640625k . file

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post #12 of 465 Old 02-04-2005, 09:34 AM
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Yep, I saw that. Nothing there about the scaling. But this thing is just full of inputs and outputs. It really is impressive.

Even if you don't like the scaling in the unit, it mentions the ability to do "bypass switching" and "component/s-video/composite to HDMI conversion." If I read that right, it means you can use it to transcode all your analog signals to HDMI, and pass them and any other digital video signals straight through to another video processor over a clean HDMI connection.

So it's not the end of the world if it doesn't do true 1080i deinterlacing---you can interface with a processor that does. Though if you go that route, it's an argument to go with the SS80 instead of the SS100.

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post #13 of 465 Old 02-04-2005, 10:53 AM
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Now, only if these could also replace a dedicated two-channel preamp in combined HT/two-channel systems like mine.
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post #14 of 465 Old 02-04-2005, 11:11 AM
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Does the LCD display HD content. This is a nice feature and I found it usefull when I had the Fosgate pre pro but most of them only display SD and its a pain when cueing up an HD title.
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post #15 of 465 Old 02-04-2005, 11:21 AM - Thread Starter
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Don't know about HD content. I'd kind of doubt it unless it uses it's internal transcoder to 'dummy it down' for that display. It might though and that might be the biggest chunk of that $2k price increase.

Michael,

That's the whole problem. My current scaler doesn't do HDMI - but for that matter, neither does my PJ and never will (NEC CRT) :( If the scaler in this is even close to what I currently have but more user friendly, I'd probably go this way and eventually move to a PJ that did when that becomes necessary for HD content.

The most important thing to me is sound quality. I have a Theta Casanova now and love it on music but it doesn't have multi-channel analog inputs to support SACD/DVD-A. That's the whole reason for my search starting now. HDMI is a big bonus if in fact that is the way things are going to go and then don't come up with something else new :rolleyes:

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post #16 of 465 Old 02-04-2005, 12:16 PM
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bpape, don't count something like this out. Once nice thing about DVI/HDMI is that you can use it to do a nice long run from your A/V stack to the projector, then attach a DVI->RGB D/A converter followed by very short analog cables. According to William Phelps who did this with his G90 (before he sold it), the improvement in picture quality is noticeable.

Now of course, HDCP copy protection adds a wrinkle to the problem, but a processor like the Halcro does not need to encrypt signals that they digitize from analog sources, so you should be in the clear for all analog and unencrypted digital content. (Don't take my word for that though, this should be verified by someone.)

For encrypted digital content---well, like you said, you're screwed already :) unless you can get a hold of one of the few devices floating around out there that, how shall we say it, "accidentally" decrypts HDCP content.

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post #17 of 465 Old 02-04-2005, 12:25 PM - Thread Starter
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I'm definitely not counting this out. I've been kind of hanging around waiting for the digital PJ quality to come up to a point where I'd be happy and it didn't cost me as much as a car! Things are moving along nicely in that area. If they can get the blacks right, we'll be set. Maybe in another couple years.....

Yes, the HDCP is the whole issue. When I bought my scaler, I thought DVI was going to be the 'new deal.' Oh well. For the rest, yes, I can deal with it. Like I said, my biggest thing right now is getting something that will be as good or better than my Theta on music and give me multi-channel ins. If I can do this AND get into HDMI/HDCP in one swoop, that would be great. This piece looks like it might just be the answer.

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post #18 of 465 Old 02-04-2005, 12:29 PM
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Quote:
When I bought my scaler, I thought DVI was going to be the 'new deal.'
Well, you weren't too far off. HDMI really is just DVI with a couple extra features. Oh yeah, and copy protection :)

P.S. Check your PM.

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post #19 of 465 Old 02-04-2005, 12:48 PM
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Michael:

And a dramatically smaller connector, and audio capability.

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post #20 of 465 Old 02-04-2005, 12:51 PM
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Those are the couple extra features :)

Interestingly, at the Marantz demo at CES the Marantz rep (not Dan Miller) fielded a question from an installer who has been having trouble with HDMI connections coming loose. Seems he prefers good old fashioned DVI because of it. I have no HDMI connections here so I can't testify one way or another. I can't see them being any worse than, say, RCA connections.

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post #21 of 465 Old 02-04-2005, 02:19 PM
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Quote:
Originally posted by MAK
Now, only if these could also replace a dedicated two-channel preamp in combined HT/two-channel systems like mine.
I only found 2 processors that are good enough for high end 2 channel listening:

- My current one, the Mark Levinson 40 which actually sounds better with CDs than my previous Goldmund Mimesis 20/22 set. It sucks with analog though, like all processors.

- The new Goldmund 30 and 24 which are way better than the 40, but don't include any video processing or even switching. I haven't tested the analog part yet.

Robert
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post #22 of 465 Old 02-11-2005, 08:23 PM
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Quote:
Originally posted by Michael Grant
Looks pretty sweet, and for what it can do that's a surprisingly good price. But I'd sure like to know who they're working with to do video processing (deinterlacing/scaling). True 1080i deinterlacing?
It is a custom designed board from Oplus...the Israeli company.

Being one of the 20 Halcro dealers in the states, I can't wait to get my demo gear (I have the entire Halcro Logic line coming). They are expecting the first shipments to go out in 30-45 days. Actually the IP controllable amps are already ready for shipment, but they are finalizing the processors to incorporate the latest HDMI spec and to upgrade the processing to 24/192 vs the stated 24/96 that's currently listed in their online PDF. One of the unique functions of the multi-channel amps is that they will be individually controllable. Meaning if you want to turn off the center and surrounds for 2 channel enjoyment, you'll be able to do so at the amplifier level. Pretty nice feature.

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post #23 of 465 Old 02-16-2005, 04:56 AM
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"fielded a question from an installer who has been having trouble with HDMI connections coming loose. Seems he prefers good old fashioned DVI because of it."

This has already been a problem.
Had talks about this with molex last week, they now have a locking plug design.
But, are afraid that the weight of longer cables will pull the HDMI terminal out of the circuit board (current design has four legs on bottom soldered to board).
On monday got new molex HDMI terminal (has metal tap on top to mount to panel), while this required retooling for my HDMI restorer (will be ready for EHEXPO) it will add substantial support to receiving plug.
Biggest problem that we have seen, is the outer case of HDMI receiving terminal expanding allowing the cable plug to move around.
We are working on this one.

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post #24 of 465 Old 03-20-2005, 01:22 AM
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I just ordered my Demo gear as well, and I am fairly stoked to see it in action. I am a huge Lex fan, but I love the Halcro line for high-end audio, and Logic looks like it will be a winner to me.

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post #25 of 465 Old 04-12-2005, 02:55 PM
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Regarding the Halcro processor, I would be curious to know whether or not they built the piece from the ground-up or, like Sim Audio, used another bran's product to serve as the base for their product. Given the R&D costs, I would tend to lean towards the re-badging (sort of resembles Halo products). However, given Halcro's reputation, I could be dead wrong. Any thoughts?
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post #26 of 465 Old 04-12-2005, 03:05 PM
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Ground up. Scaling is done by a 3rd party, but that's it.

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post #27 of 465 Old 04-12-2005, 03:16 PM
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That's not correct Doc, the SSP-100/80 uses the Titan platform as a base which is developed by Vinci Labs for Halcro. www.vincilabs.com This is the same platform the Halo C1 and C2 are based off of, but understand that Halcro is using the latest Titan version...newer than Halo's Titan version. The video boards for Halcro were created by Oplus which is what is used in the Integra Research products as well.

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post #28 of 465 Old 04-12-2005, 03:17 PM
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FYI - Vinci Labs used to be a part of Flextronics but they split off.

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post #29 of 465 Old 04-13-2005, 04:10 AM
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Quote:
Originally posted by bhuskins
It is a custom designed board from Oplus...the Israeli company.

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Hmmm... that's interesting. I asked the same question to the Halcro guy at CES and to my suprise he said the video processing board is coming from Turkey. I said: "Are you sure?? I'm from Turkey and never knew we had companies dealing in such technology". He couldn't tell me the name of the company, but maybe he knew it wrong.
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post #30 of 465 Old 04-13-2005, 04:12 AM
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It's Oplus...

Brent
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