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post #91 of 639 Old 06-24-2013, 01:33 AM
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Do you get a osd for volume on the 551R?
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post #92 of 639 Old 06-24-2013, 03:40 AM
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Ryder125 no Azur doesn't have OSD Volume actually nothing as OSD even Menu is a simple blue screen and not an overlap screen on current display.
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post #93 of 639 Old 06-24-2013, 04:15 AM
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Hi bjfh: I have posted few comments in back post comparing these AVRs and my criteria.
Anyways for your reference I have demo these AVR for both movies and music

I will divide my comments/judgment in 3 categories

Arcam:
SQ: Very good sound, i demo Arcam with B&W speakers (satellite & Floor standing), i was really impressed with the SQ when playing with Floor standing but with satellite speakers the demo was so down that i asked the guy to stop playing... sound was not half as good as with the floor standings. Another reason
Features: One feature imp to me was individual cross-over for each channel. Arcam doesn't provide this was was a deal breaker for me
Price: Arcam was more expensive than CA that added to the downside of 1st 2 reasons.

NAD:
SQ: Excellent sound especially with movies. But in Music wasn't that much impressive especially my wife didn't like the demo for Music (Guitar for a R&R CD was playing)
Features: All ok but as you know NAD doesn't provide any kind of scalar for Video.
Price: Price was reasonable and around same as Azur.

CA Azur:
SQ: Blown away sound and especially equally good for both movies & music, after using it almost a month i can say i have yet to find a flaw in the SQ for both movies & music. This is something really strange cuz in all other AVRs i can still find a hit of weakness either in movies or music.
I have been doing lot of demos for last many days for my friends or even to myself after buying new speakers. Mostly i was testing with Music & concerts and playing parts of movies with good sound effects.
But recently i watched few movies start to finish and what an experience i must say i never had so much fun watching a movie. Well i do give credit to 2 other aspects of sound other than Azur AVR, one the speakers & 2nd the settings/tuning i did with Azur.

Features: Well Azur did offer cross-over for each channel that was another reason for me to be incline towards Azur.
Price: Sure was reasonably price and cheaper than other 2.

Anyway after listening to all these AVRs and keep listening to my Azur 551r i can say i would have been willing to pay extra as well compare to Arcam & NAD for this AVR.

BTW cuz i need to upgrade my AVR from 551r so i'm still considering between Azur 651r or Anthem MRX 500... unfortunately i can't find a local showroom to demo Anthem and i don't want to buy Anthem just based on reviews cuz i really love the sound of Azur and don't want to regret later if anthem is not close to Azur in SQ. Also Anthem is more expensive than Azur for same model.

Hope this will help you.
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post #94 of 639 Old 06-24-2013, 04:29 PM
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Thanks very much for the info. I will keep these points in mind when comparing them. I assume the NAD model was a T757 and the Arcam was an AVR360. Is that correct?
Ben
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post #95 of 639 Old 06-24-2013, 04:40 PM
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Arcam 360 with small speakers and Arcam 400 with Floor standing.
NAD T748 & T757
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post #96 of 639 Old 06-25-2013, 12:36 AM
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Just ordered a 751R and 752BD through my local dealer, and I should have it next week.

I'm not an impulse buyer on these types of hardware, but this time I ordered without auditioning first based on Cambridge Audio's reputation. Hopefully I won't find out the hard way that I've made a mistake...

Mike
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post #97 of 639 Old 06-25-2013, 01:26 AM
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rmunawar9,

I was just reading your older post in here your testing these avrs with different speakers? You know that doesn't really work? The speakers will effect the sound the most, so different speakers would be the difference of what your mostly hearing. Now the Marantz is your older avr so that was on your current speakers? If so that would be your best and only real comparison, if you do check out the Anthem you really should see if they do in home demos, if its done in store they'll likely have them hooked up to some nice Studio speakers from Paradigm.
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post #98 of 639 Old 06-25-2013, 01:27 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by msimanyi View Post

Just ordered a 751R and 752BD through my local dealer, and I should have it next week.

I'm not an impulse buyer on these types of hardware, but this time I ordered without auditioning first based on Cambridge Audio's reputation. Hopefully I won't find out the hard way that I've made a mistake...

Mike

That's an expensive bill! I'm sure you'll love it, report back when you get it.
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post #99 of 639 Old 06-25-2013, 03:37 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by msimanyi View Post

Just ordered a 751R and 752BD through my local dealer, and I should have it next week.

I'm not an impulse buyer on these types of hardware, but this time I ordered without auditioning first based on Cambridge Audio's reputation. Hopefully I won't find out the hard way that I've made a mistake...

Mike

Another passenger here on the Azur bandwagon, without auditioning. I also bought 751R purely on reviews and got the delivery just now as I write. I hope it yields the expected results

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post #100 of 639 Old 06-25-2013, 07:09 AM
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Ryder125, Thanks and true speakers do play an important role in the experience but unfortunately in Malaysia & Singapore there's no dealer who provide in-home demo facility so i still have to relay on what they offer but after being a user of AVRs/Speakers for a long time and having use many brands of speakers & AVRs i some how have developed a sense of still being able to get an idea how to differentiate among speakers & AVRs quality.
I'm still confuse just cuz of a bad habit i still want to try Anthem even if for a while... I really love and enjoy the sound of Azur and find no reason to change to Anthem but just cuz of my habit of trying new i'm so much want to buy Anthem but keep stoping myself from doing that but i must decide within a day or two...
Anyone who can give some sense otherwise i will end up replacing my Azur with Anthem (Issues/problems with these brands doesn't matter to me in deciding i.e. my brand new Azur 551r just out of box had some problem and i send back for replacement and i'm ok with that these kind of matters doesn't effect my decision on what to buy)
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post #101 of 639 Old 06-26-2013, 06:01 AM
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Brave heart123!!Dont worry it WILL!!
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post #102 of 639 Old 06-26-2013, 06:10 AM
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If i were u i wouldnt replace the azur with Anthem.Never!!No way!!U would not get so linear SQ with that.Believe me i had Anthem and i really didnt like!!(i had it for a week or less)Its time to grow up for CA!!The greatest i have had so far after the "commerse" (denon 2308,4311,onkyo 607,3007,marantz,5004,6004,7005,8002,anthem mrx 500,yamaha rxv 3000)ones!!!Sq is over features IMO!
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post #103 of 639 Old 06-26-2013, 07:46 AM
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Morphling sorry you are late, i have already jumped ships and bought Anthem... I still have Azur 551r and now also got MRX 300. So far i did like the SQ of Anthem but still not in position to compare against Azur until i complete all my settings & testings. Even for now Azur is still more punchy & powerful for now the way i can describe one difference between them is that Azur is RAW Power (Too much Power) and Anthem is refined/processed. Both have different characteristics and in my view both should not be compare.
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post #104 of 639 Old 06-26-2013, 09:55 AM
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It so pity.Never mind!!u will get some experiences,although i have 651r but ithink 551 could also be great.Write your pesonal experiences ,after testing some days!!Good luck!
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post #105 of 639 Old 06-26-2013, 10:33 AM
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rmunawar9 When you get the anthem all set up can you give a detailed post on it...Especially with 2channel music listening......I'm still on the fence on a few recievers and the Anthem might be one of them....
Rick

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post #106 of 639 Old 06-26-2013, 10:46 AM
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Sure RickPas i will share my experience but for now i can say if pure 2 channel sound is your criteria then i would still rate Azur on top of Anthem for the following reasons
1. Azur is more powerful than Anthem even rated power is more comparing Azur 551r to MRX 300
2. As i highlighted earlier i feel Azur has too much RAW power to play with which gives a very nice punch with a nice aggressive sound kind of on your face... This really help produce a very good sound especially in case of 2 channel stereo music.

There are positives of Anthem as well but i think they come as an over all package but pure 2 channel music i would go for Azur.
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post #107 of 639 Old 06-26-2013, 11:26 AM
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I'm going to make a few quick comments here, despite not having received my new hardware yet. When I was reviewing my options, I was seriously pulled in a few directions. I considered Anthem, the Marantz 8801 processor and an amp - possible Parasound - the Denon 4520, and a Pioneer Elite SC-68.

The Cambridge and Pioneer stood out as the two that offer an asynchronous DAC capable of USB communication with a computer. The Cambridge, as we all know, doesn't support 48 different internet music services, airplay, or even an internet connection. That last feature is supported by their disc player, so I bundled that with my order. The internet music services are something I will use through my computer connection if I want them, and Apple TV is all of $99, offering full airplay support for my MacBook Pro and iPad. I *may* choose to add their StreamMagic6 device later, for even better network / internet music support.

I am keenly interested in two channel playback and I'm *hoping* the 751R will mate well with my MartinLogan speakers and satisfy this itch. If it doesn't... I'm sure it will sound better than my current 2004-era Denon AVR.

I decided against the Denon having read it doesn't have much in the way of soundstage depth. The Pioneer model I mentioned seems to be discontinued, despite the relatively recent review I found of it. The Marantz combo might have been the best, but at double the price - and with me doing major renovations on a house - I decided to be responsible with my budget. Anthem's products are, I'm sure, quite capable. But I decided to pull the trigger on the 751R based on my discussion with my local vendor (who unfortunately didn't have one in stock to audition), the recent Home Theater review, and the general care and attention to detail suggested by their studio voicing of the sound.

I'm eagerly awaiting its arrival!

Mike
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post #108 of 639 Old 06-26-2013, 12:38 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rmunawar9 View Post

Sure RickPas i will share my experience but for now i can say if pure 2 channel sound is your criteria then i would still rate Azur on top of Anthem for the following reasons
1. Azur is more powerful than Anthem even rated power is more comparing Azur 551r to MRX 300
2. As i highlighted earlier i feel Azur has too much RAW power to play with which gives a very nice punch with a nice aggressive sound kind of on your face... This really help produce a very good sound especially in case of 2 channel stereo music.

There are positives of Anthem as well but i think they come as an over all package but pure 2 channel music i would go for Azur.

I listen to alot of Music blu rays in 5channel also, so I do want both......And I would think I would benefit more from ARC for my room and system....If the azur had a better room correction for the sub I don't think it would even be a question, but that is the thing that scares me the most.....
Rick

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post #109 of 639 Old 06-26-2013, 12:55 PM
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Finally, I dialled 751R in my HT setup. I will post my comprehensive impressions in near future. But, I need some info for now;

  • How to put this receiver in 2-channel mode like the Pure Direct equivalent of Yamaha? While I can toggle between Stereo and Stereo+Sub modes by pressing the Stereo Modes button on the remote, but it does not disengage dynamic EQ in 2-Channel. Pure direct has to be uncoloured and DEQ does colour the sound. Btw, I had Yamaha RX-V3900 and that unit, in terms of channel separation, is way ahead of Azur 751R in Pure Direct mode thus far. Or may be um unable to trigger Pure direct in 751R properly. I am not discussing the power aspect right now. Onkyo 809 and Denon 3313 sucked in PD.
  • What is the SPL of pink noise? I mean are the test tones to set trim levels recorded at -30dBFS or -20dBFS? There is a significant difference between speakers' test tones and the one for sub in terms of SPL. Audyssey 2EQ calibrates the system to 78.5dB, also the distance calculation is utterly wrong...............God knows why??
  • Even at 00 on subwoofer trim level, the SPL on rat shack meter reads 74dB during level calibration in speakers level menu. Um using my sub as bedside table and it is just 1.5 feet away from MLP. Keeping all the other things constant, I would get somewhere in access of 85dB at MLP from the same sub from Yamaha/Onkyo/Denon. Though, while watching movies or in music I reduce it to -4 and still the sub can knock down the walls and blow the roof. It's that powerful. But why does it show very weak SPL during level matching?? Has anyone experienced the same issue??

Just to throw spanner in the works.............................Audyssey in this AVR is a plain rubbish and I have manually tamed this beast 1000000000000000000000000000000 times better than 2EQ. People who lose their Audyssey mic or find it missing in the box or accidentally drive over it crushing to pieces, don't bother getting the new one. You won't miss anything, trust me!!! But I think there is a very valid reason why CA chose 2EQ with lowest resolution for their highest rating flagship AVR. Well I leave this part for the final review. wink.gif

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post #110 of 639 Old 06-26-2013, 05:09 PM
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Yup, Audyssey 2EQ is crap. I tried XT in a Marantz and found --- nothing. Arcam's RC was the worst. Actually damaged SQ when turned on. Fortunately, with Arcam you don't need RC as much. Arcam integrates bass into the sound incredibly well. Good breeding of the brand.

The only RC I've found to make an actual positive impact is Anthem's ARC. Particularly, if you have bass heavy speakers(which is most HT people). However, with some speaker movement, I negated nearly all of it. Especially in my number ONE seating area - ARC ON or OFF, I couldn't tell the difference anymore.

I then used the bass crossovers and speaker position found from ARC for Cambridge Audio.

I still think RC is much more about the speakers than it is about the room. But that is a touchy/difficult to swallow - subject for many to handle. Especially, for people who own Anthem AVR/Pro's - because Anthem is owned......um.....yeah. So.....you know.

Words to live by next time you buy speakers....

"You can always add a subwoofer to increase bass, but it's really hard to replace a pi$$ poor tweeter." tongue.gif

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post #111 of 639 Old 06-26-2013, 10:14 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dean-l View Post

Yup, Audyssey 2EQ is crap. I tried XT in a Marantz and found --- nothing. Arcam's RC was the worst. Actually damaged SQ when turned on. Fortunately, with Arcam you don't need RC as much. Arcam integrates bass into the sound incredibly well. Good breeding of the brand.

The only RC I've found to make an actual positive impact is Anthem's ARC. Particularly, if you have bass heavy speakers(which is most HT people). However, with some speaker movement, I negated nearly all of it. Especially in my number ONE seating area - ARC ON or OFF, I couldn't tell the difference anymore.

I then used the bass crossovers and speaker position found from ARC for Cambridge Audio.

I still think RC is much more about the speakers than it is about the room. But that is a touchy/difficult to swallow - subject for many to handle. Especially, for people who own Anthem AVR/Pro's - because Anthem is owned......um.....yeah. So.....you know.

Words to live by next time you buy speakers....

"You can always add a subwoofer to increase bass, but it's really hard to replace a pi$$ poor tweeter." tongue.gif

Sorry, but my questions still remain unanswered. Could you explain how to put this receiver in Pure Direct mode for music listening? Also, how are test tones recorded on 751R i.e. at 75dB or 85dB? Also, did you notice SPL difference between speaker test tones and that for the sub?

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post #112 of 639 Old 06-26-2013, 11:36 PM
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Didn't really mean to answer your questions. Wasn't the point.

But, since you ask...

1. Analog Direct or in British English "Analogue Direct" has a button "Analogue direct"(page 10 of manual) Like most of these devices the "Pure Direct" or more proper generic term "Analog Bypass" is a separate button. I'm surprised you didn't press it by accident.

Now before you start your "you are wrong" post "I already tried that" -- If you DID try it and it has no sound, THAT is because you do not have an actual ANALOG (old RCA ends) connection for that input. If it "worked on my other AVR!!" THAT is why they did not call it the proper term "Analog Bypass" but instead called it "Pure Direct". "Pure Direct" probably only bypasses the DSP chips. Because you are still processing a digital signal through the Digital to Analog converter (D/A) it is still a processed (or more accurately -- a converted) signal and kinda blows the whole point. But for the uninformed it sounds the same, etc etc. They can't tell the diff anyway. Or don't REALLY know better. Plus, it saves money. Also, explains why you think you can "toggle" through the stereo modes. Real Analog Bypasses are a dedicated button.

Also remember you may need to make changes to input/output assignments, etc.

Now IF you are using a BD/DVD/SACD/etc. player for your music disks, then you might have separate 7.1 analog out AND 2 channel analog outs. But if it only has 7.1 analog outs then you will have to use the "7.1 Direct" button which is really basically the same thing.

Now I could be wrong for any of this. But based on experience, the manual, what you wrote, etc. It's probably right. I'm not interested enough to actually try it, unless I'm wrong and then I'll take a crack at it for fun.

2. No idea. Go to their website >>> "Support Center" >>>"Customer Care Centre" and ask them. They've always sent a response to me in a day.

3. Hard to tell. The volume of a subwoofer is VERY difficult to compare to a full range speaker. See #2 above. Or since it seems very important to you, buy a SPL meter. I wouldn't fully trust what they might tell you on this one anyway.

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post #113 of 639 Old 06-27-2013, 12:19 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dean-l View Post

Didn't really mean to answer your questions. Wasn't the point.

But, since you ask...

1. Analog Direct or in British English "Analogue Direct" has a button "Analogue direct"(page 10 of manual) Like most of these devices the "Pure Direct" or more proper generic term "Analog Bypass" is a separate button. I'm surprised you didn't press it by accident.

Now before you start your "you are wrong" post "I already tried that" -- If you DID try it and it has no sound, THAT is because you do not have an actual ANALOG (old RCA ends) connection for that input. If it "worked on my other AVR!!" THAT is why they did not call it the proper term "Analog Bypass" but instead called it "Pure Direct". "Pure Direct" probably only bypasses the DSP chips. Because you are still processing a digital signal through the Digital to Analog converter (D/A) it is still a processed (or more accurately -- a converted) signal and kinda blows the whole point. But for the uninformed it sounds the same, etc etc. They can't tell the diff anyway. Or don't REALLY know better. Plus, it saves money. Also, explains why you think you can "toggle" through the stereo modes. Real Analog Bypasses are a dedicated button.

Also remember you may need to make changes to input/output assignments, etc.

Now IF you are using a BD/DVD/SACD/etc. player for your music disks, then you might have separate 7.1 analog out AND 2 channel analog outs. But if it only has 7.1 analog outs then you will have to use the "7.1 Direct" button which is really basically the same thing.

Now I could be wrong for any of this. But based on experience, the manual, what you wrote, etc. It's probably right. I'm not interested enough to actually try it, unless I'm wrong and then I'll take a crack at it for fun.

I think you nailed it here. I am using HDMI hookup between the source and receiver.
Quote:
Or since it seems very important to you, buy a SPL meter.

Is it not??confused.gif
Also, I do have rat shack spl meter, hence the reason for clarification on 3rd point.

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post #114 of 639 Old 06-27-2013, 06:02 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by braveheart123 View Post


Is it not??confused.gif
Also, I do have rat shack spl meter, hence the reason for clarification on 3rd point.

LOL! I appreciate your thoroughness. It SHOULD be important to ALL of us.

I decided to more properly read your subwoofer inquiry.

Although, I cannot directly answer your questions, I can throw a few things at you that should be of interest.

1. SPL meters are notorious for being less reliable in the lower sound frequency range.

2. I read somewhere, from someone that Cirrus Logic chips inherently run the subwoofer something like 8db too hot. And he found that on multiple AVR's from different brands.

3. For me to achieve proper sub level relative to Anthem's ARC, the sub was down about -8 db from 0. For CA's 2EQ I am down about -15 db for proper balance.

For ME, it is a matter of what the AVR does. For whatever reason, the CA pushes TONS of bass out the sub relative to the Anthem MRX700 (or Arcam AVR400 for that matter) for example, without level adjustments. I find it hard to believe anyone could handle it. Now I've found Audyssey's 2EQ Autosetup catches most of this in it's setup for basic settings -- levels/distance/crossovers/etc.

If you are finding sub levels are out of control HOT for you, I have to ask, are you using speakers levels that Audyssey set for you? ALSO, AVR's have leveling limits. If the subwoofer level setting is maxed out at -10db for instance, then you need to dramatically turn down the level on the sub itself to help the AVR handle it.

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post #115 of 639 Old 06-27-2013, 08:44 PM
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rmunawar9,

So what are your thoughts between the Anthem 300 and and the 551R? You staying with Cambridge or going Anthem?

Also, I read that the 551R doesn't put off any heat... You finding that? Is it never warm?
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post #116 of 639 Old 06-27-2013, 10:30 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dean-l View Post

LOL! I appreciate your thoroughness. It SHOULD be important to ALL of us.

I decided to more properly read your subwoofer inquiry.

Although, I cannot directly answer your questions, I can throw a few things at you that should be of interest.

1. SPL meters are notorious for being less reliable in the lower sound frequency range.

2. I read somewhere, from someone that Cirrus Logic chips inherently run the subwoofer something like 8db too hot. And he found that on multiple AVR's from different brands.

3. For me to achieve proper sub level relative to Anthem's ARC, the sub was down about -8 db from 0. For CA's 2EQ I am down about -15 db for proper balance.

For ME, it is a matter of what the AVR does. For whatever reason, the CA pushes TONS of bass out the sub relative to the Anthem MRX700 (or Arcam AVR400 for that matter) for example, without level adjustments. I find it hard to believe anyone could handle it. Now I've found Audyssey's 2EQ Autosetup catches most of this in it's setup for basic settings -- levels/distance/crossovers/etc.

If you are finding sub levels are out of control HOT for you, I have to ask, are you using speakers levels that Audyssey set for you? ALSO, AVR's have leveling limits. If the subwoofer level setting is maxed out at -10db for instance, then you need to dramatically turn down the level on the sub itself to help the AVR handle it.

Come on man.....Even when I run the REW to check room modes for properly dialling the sub, it is way too low while running the internal test tones of 751R. However, during playback it easily knocks down the walls. Moreover, I don't use Audyssey esp in this avr and calibrate manually. 2EQ implementation is plain rubbish.

I think I figured out the problem. Well this may not actually be a problem but a different way of implementing bass management by CA. I think while running internal test tones of 751R to set the sub level, it runs the sub test tone 10dB lower than what it should be to account for extra 10dB in LFE during actual playback of DD/DTS movies. Such that whenever we set the sub trim level in avr, that is for the redirected bass. LFE level is already configurable in "Tone/Sub/LFE" Menu.


As I said earlier.......keeping all things EQUAL, the sub would be at 7-8 dB hotter while running the internal test tones of Yamaha/Onkyo/Denon. I think CA implements bass management differently

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post #117 of 639 Old 06-28-2013, 07:06 AM
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Ryder125 I decided to join the Dark side and bought the Anthem MRX 300 and probably will be upgrading to MRX 500 (That's the deal i made with the distributor). I'm very happy and satisfied with my decision and no regrets at all.... MRX 300 is even more expensive than Azur 651r but after buying and using i have no regrets and can understand why pay extra.
On your question of heat i didn't experience any such think during my use of 551r.
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post #118 of 639 Old 06-28-2013, 10:10 AM
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So you like the Anthem better?
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post #119 of 639 Old 06-28-2013, 12:00 PM
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Ryder125 Yes to my liking yes i find Anthem a better option. I'm not saying that Azur SQ is not good actually it's great but Azur lacks in few areas from functionality and Sound Stage point of view and that's where i find Anthem a better value for money and having an edge.
Base and surround impact is much better with Anthem than Azur and one thing which has impress me the most so far along with the SQ is the level of configuration and customization. I have not seen that level of detail setup with options in any other AVR i have ever used before.
So far i'm not able to test ARC which ppl praise the most i can only comment on that once i setup ARC which will be after a while. But i'm linking Anthem even without ARC.
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post #120 of 639 Old 06-28-2013, 02:19 PM
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How is the Anthem 300 more expensive than the CA 651r?

651r retails at $2299 and MRX300 at $1000.

I actually found the opposite. The Anthem's have a more open high end and better menu system. Anthem has little soundstage, just mess of sound. The CA is much more detailed and precise IMO. With a stereo soundstage wider than the speakers. And the CA has a higher quality bass, less boomy. But each their own. We'll have to see what you post on the Anthem thread. But you'll enjoy it of sure. I liked mine, for the most part. The main flaw, for me, was how poorly the CODEC chips pull apart the multi channels and of course the static noises.

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