Panasonic XR55 7.1 Digital Receiver - Page 16 - AVS Forum
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post #451 of 3606 Old 08-06-2005, 08:36 PM
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i just had a remarkable experience. my first very serious listen to my xr55 for music.

an album i know like the back of my hand, "legend" by bob marley, listened to an MP3 on the xr55. throughout the album, i heard things i'd never really heard before. it's because everything is so clear, so quiet, so peaceful. so clean. so fast.

anyone who wants to try this, using WMP10 and onboard digital optical out to the AVR, check out the clarity of the rhythm reverb at the start and thru "could you be loved?", the clarity of the cymbal in "no woman no cry," the musicality of the low-freq "kettle" drum at the start of "buffalo soldier", the faint tambourine at the start of "one love," the separation of the background vocals in "satisfy my soul" (you can follow them and him at the same time), and the clarity of the many percussion instruments in "jammin" (esp the thing that sounds like a spoon on a plate in the FL speaker).

i'm now sold on digital. i'll only buy digital here on out. here's to a more luxurious big brother for this one soon.
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post #452 of 3606 Old 08-06-2005, 09:47 PM
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cjv123:

If at all possible, you should try using foobar2000 so you can take advantage of kernel streaming (to bypass the windows kmixer (the volume applet in the control panel) which degrades sound) as well as using the resampler to 48khz (assuming your soundcard is among the many which resample to this, the software resampler is better than the cheesy onboard ones, and yes, this pertains to the Creative Audigy line as well).

Just a suggestion. The interface isn't as nice, but it sounds so nice...
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post #453 of 3606 Old 08-07-2005, 04:00 AM
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Uuh, I'm starting to have the XR55 fever. Already sold my NAD, XR55 on the way...

Kerpow, splat, instantaneously zonked into our component molecules.
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post #454 of 3606 Old 08-07-2005, 04:36 AM
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So I''m not the only one with the XR55 fever. It must be contagious or an epidemic.
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post #455 of 3606 Old 08-07-2005, 06:50 AM
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a question for you XR55 guys.
can it handle a mix of speakers with different impedances?
our current set up has 8ohm mains and multiple arrays of 8ohm surrounds.
i use the preamp out on our current avr and separate amps to drive the extra surrounds.
without the preamp out (on the XR55), i would have to hook up the surround arrays in parallel. this would mean that the XR55 would be seeing 8ohm mains and 4ohm surrounds.
can it handle it?
thanks in advance,
eric
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post #456 of 3606 Old 08-07-2005, 07:13 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by humbland View Post

a question for you XR55 guys.
i use the preamp out on our current avr and separate amps to drive the extra surrounds.
without the preamp out (on the XR55), i would have to hook up the surround arrays in parallel.

Why do you need to put the surrounds in parallel? What setup are you using ? 7.1?
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post #457 of 3606 Old 08-07-2005, 08:45 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Landroval View Post

Uuh, I'm starting to have the XR55 fever. Already sold my NAD, XR55 on the way...

Not sure if I'll get bitten by the fever. Sold off one of my higher-end receivers, now I'm just reading the thread to gather some information.

With the XR55, how does Zone 2 work? Do you just connect the "B" speakers to the 2nd zone? If you do this, does the sub get turned off? Ideally, this is how I'd like it to work as my previous receiver would do this.

I know some of my questions could be answered if Panasonic would just upload the .PDF manual to their site. Unfortunately, they haven't as of last evening. Does anyone have a link to a .PDF manual - in English, please?

Thanks!
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post #458 of 3606 Old 08-07-2005, 09:32 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wje View Post


With the XR55, how does Zone 2 work? Do you just connect the "B" speakers to the 2nd zone? If you do this, does the sub get turned off? Ideally, this is how I'd like it to work as my previous receiver would do this.

Thanks!

The following extract is from the SA-XR55 manual on page 15:

Quote:
Originally Posted by Panasonic Manual View Post

If you select SPEAKERS B only:
• Playback is in stereo.
• When a multi-channel source is played with digital connections,
“2CH MIX ” is displayed and the sounds intended for all the speakers
are played through the front speakers.
When DVD ANALOG 6CH is selected, the sound from the front two
channels is output.
• When you select SPEAKERS B, the speaker size is automatically set to
LARGE and the subwoofer setting to NO. If you use a small size
speaker, there will be inadequate bass during playback.

I think it answers your question.
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post #459 of 3606 Old 08-07-2005, 09:35 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wje View Post

I know some of my questions could be answered if Panasonic would just upload the .PDF manual to their site. Unfortunately, they haven't as of last evening. Does anyone have a link to a .PDF manual - in English, please?

Thanks!

http://service.us.panasonic.com/OPERMANPDF/SAXR55.PDF
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post #460 of 3606 Old 08-07-2005, 09:46 AM
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Which speakers do you think would suit the XR55. Polk Audio (Monitor 70) or Klipsch (Reference RF25 or Synergy F3). The Klipsch are more efficeint (e.g. 97db) making them easy to drive but are considered to be bright forward speakers. Since the Pannys are already on the bright side would this be a good match? The Polk Audio are less sensitive (e.g. 90db) and are considered more neutral. Being less sensitive, the Polk Audio requires more current from the Panny. The Polk Audio also comes with matching bi-wirable bookselves (Monitor 40) for surrounds while the Klipsch doesn't.

The other factor is the price difference - Polk Audio tends to be cheaper then the Klipsch.
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post #461 of 3606 Old 08-07-2005, 11:29 AM
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Quote:


I think it answers your question.

Yes, it has, DigitalHT. Thank you for taking the time to respond.

I'll be placing my order this week. After I've had some time to break it in and test it with a few speakers, I'll be sure to post my observations. On paper, there's nothing to hate about this receiver.


Dickster, Thanks!
That's what I was looking for. Unfortunately, clicking the links on the Panasonic support site kept telling me that such a manual didn't exist.

Heck, with the subwoofer crossover, great support for Zone B, Front panel dimmer, sleep timer, etc., Panasonic really packed a lot of options into this little "beast".
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post #462 of 3606 Old 08-07-2005, 12:30 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DigitalHT View Post

The following extract is from the SA-XR55 manual on page 15:

Originally Posted by Panasonic Manual
If you select SPEAKERS B only:

- Playback is in stereo.

- When a multi-channel source is played with digital connections,
2CH MIX is displayed and the sounds intended for all the speakers
are played through the front speakers.
When DVD ANALOG 6CH is selected, the sound from the front two
channels is output.

- When you select SPEAKERS B, the speaker size is automatically set to
LARGE and the subwoofer setting to NO. If you use a small size
speaker, there will be inadequate bass during playback.

Doesn't this mean that when you try to bi-amp the fronts in a 5.1-setup with A+B speakers, the other pair of wires is going to output "2ch mix" and the other only the fronts as it should? That's not what I want.

Well, that was B-only, but how about A+B?

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post #463 of 3606 Old 08-07-2005, 12:35 PM
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Has anyone tried to connect an mp3 player to this or any other digital receiver?What was the sound quality like?

Matt
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post #464 of 3606 Old 08-07-2005, 02:54 PM
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Quote:


Doesn't this mean that when you try to bi-amp the fronts in a 5.1-setup with A+B speakers, the other pair of wires is going to output "2ch mix" and the other only the fronts as it should? That's not what I want.

Well, that was B-only, but how about A+B?

From the sounds of it, if you are using the bi-amp option, the "B" channel will be applied to your speakers. I think how you interpreted what was quoted above is that the configuration for "B" would change and they would be set to large and go into 2-channel mode. However, it only appears that it will do this if you have the "B" outputs designed as the 2nd zone. Having them set to bi-amp mode, will still keep the correct signal going down the "B" channels.
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post #465 of 3606 Old 08-07-2005, 03:47 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Landroval View Post

Doesn't this mean that when you try to bi-amp the fronts in a 5.1-setup with A+B speakers, the other pair of wires is going to output "2ch mix" and the other only the fronts as it should? That's not what I want.

Well, that was B-only, but how about A+B?


keep in mind 2CH mix still respects L,R.

yes, biwiring is not technically supported for digital sources. it's a workaround, imperfect but not that bad.

A+B plays B the same- the sub would play since the "A"s are playing. in A+B mode the A's can be in digital mode playing surround while the Bs also play- quite a feature, frankly, as was alluded to above.
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post #466 of 3606 Old 08-07-2005, 03:55 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by humbland View Post

a question for you XR55 guys. can it handle a mix of speakers with different impedances? ...[snip]... without the preamp out (on the XR55), i would have to hook up the surround arrays in parallel. this would mean that the XR55 would be seeing 8ohm mains and 4ohm surrounds.
can it handle it?

I have the opposite - three Orb mod2's across the front (nominal 4-ohm) and four mod1's as surrounds, nominal 8-ohm. Fine and dandy for me.
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post #467 of 3606 Old 08-07-2005, 04:07 PM
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Which speakers do you think would suit the XR55. Polk Audio (Monitor 70) or Klipsch (Reference RF25 or Synergy F3)

Try to listen to both and see which you prefer, that's really the only way to know for certain. Like you said the Klipsch may have a brighter sound than the Polks, but that also depends on your room. I'd imagine either speaker would sound just fine, but one of them is likely going to sound better to you. I think J and R sells both speaker lines, you could get both and return the ones you're least satisfied with.

The difference in sensitivity shouldn't be a factor, the Polks are hardly inefficient speakers.
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post #468 of 3606 Old 08-07-2005, 08:05 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by oddjob View Post

The graphs are super, and if you don't read German, you can still understand them.

The XR55 delivered 7*86W@8ohms, and 7*153W@4ohms. This is a very good result, the best of the 4 tested.

In stereo, 2*93W@8ohm, 2*120W@6ohm, 2*169W@4ohm, 2*206W@3ohm, 2*238W@2ohm. Again, this is a fantastic result (is the amp in stereo dual amp mode?). The poor Harmon Karman appears close to self destruct at 2ohms and only produced 2*50W! Must be one of them fancy new high current designs

It's clear that the XR55 delivers a lot of power with 7 channels driven, and low impedance speakers will not be a problem at all. I'm not sure if anything else near this price point can do this well (maybe another digital receiver, certainly not an analog design).

Oddjob, you have done a GOOD JOB in quoting the relevant figures from the german review. Fantastic. Thank you very much.
As you mentioned, the almost doubling of power to 4ohms shows that the receiver can handle difficult loads. The large number of positive responses in this thread is probably a result of this capability.
I will be upgrading to the XR55 from the XR50.
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post #469 of 3606 Old 08-07-2005, 09:54 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mattg3 View Post

Has anyone tried to connect an mp3 player to this or any other digital receiver?What was the sound quality like?

I've connected my Teac 80GB HDD CD-RW MP3 Jukebox (known as PerceptionDigital in the U.S.) to my XR45 and the overall sound is great. If the MP3 was encoded in low bitrate (e.g. <192kbs) or the recording was poor then the SQ would be poor. Some mp3s do sound harsh with empahsis on the high frequencies but in general they can be comparable to the average CDs. I also notice that MP3s playing of HDD sounds better then those playing of CDs or DVDs. Not sure why this is the case.
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post #470 of 3606 Old 08-07-2005, 11:25 PM
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So does the bi-wire mode on the XR55 really makes a difference in the SQ? Is it better to use my existing XR45 with the XR55 to bi-amp for better SQ?
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post #471 of 3606 Old 08-08-2005, 01:41 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wje View Post

From the sounds of it, if you are using the bi-amp option, the "B" channel will be applied to your speakers. I think how you interpreted what was quoted above is that the configuration for "B" would change and they would be set to large and go into 2-channel mode. However, it only appears that it will do this if you have the "B" outputs designed as the 2nd zone. Having them set to bi-amp mode, will still keep the correct signal going down the "B" channels.

If that's true, that's good news. However because the bi-amp mode is not officially supported for digital multi-ch I wonder why the B-output would work as It should...
Quote:
Originally Posted by cjv123 View Post

keep in mind 2CH mix still respects L,R.

yes, biwiring is not technically supported for digital sources. it's a workaround, imperfect but not that bad.

A+B plays B the same- the sub would play since the "A"s are playing. in A+B mode the A's can be in digital mode playing surround while the Bs also play- quite a feature, frankly, as was alluded to above.

2ch mix means that the B-speakers will play everything from the 5.1-signal, the fronts, sub and also center and surround. I'm not worried about them switching to large, but hearing the center and surround also from the b-output might be annoying.

Kerpow, splat, instantaneously zonked into our component molecules.
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post #472 of 3606 Old 08-08-2005, 04:02 AM
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land-

it actually makes sense to me.

the "B"s are hardwired for what they do- they are a parallele load on the high speaker out signals.

in 2-CH mode, the "B"s get the "A"s and the sub-(nothing else is playing) .

this simple and direct approach to a second zone for the same output is precisely what i had been looking for. i was getting very frustrated with even much more expensive receivers that refused to do ths simple hack to get a 2CH feed from digitla sources.
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post #473 of 3606 Old 08-08-2005, 06:16 AM
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hi DigitalHT,
to answer your question, we have a 7.1 system with 11 amplified channels.

i have experimented with different surround set ups...
commercial movie theaters use multiple surround arrays to achieve wide dispersion and a difuse ambiance.
i've found that most movies benefit from a wide surround soundfield. it's less distracting and keeps the focus on the front (screen and dialog).

so, bottom line is that the XR55 can handle different impedences (8ohm/4ohm) in the same set up?
thanks,
eric
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post #474 of 3606 Old 08-08-2005, 07:14 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cjv123 View Post

it actually makes sense to me.

the "B"s are hardwired for what they do- they are a parallele load on the high speaker out signals.

in 2-CH mode, the "B"s get the "A"s and the sub-(nothing else is playing) .

this simple and direct approach to a second zone for the same output is precisely what i had been looking for. i was getting very frustrated with even much more expensive receivers that refused to do ths simple hack to get a 2CH feed from digitla sources.

I dont get it yet.

I have only one specific question about the bi-wire thingy. Let's assume I'm using a XR55 with 5.1 speakers where the front left and right speakers are bi-wired from A and B speaker-outs and I'm playing a DD/DTS 5.1 digital audio stream. In this case what will come out from the B output?

1) nothing
2) same as A (front channels without LFE and bass under XO)
3) fronts with bass under XO and possibly LFE (= large)
4) 2ch mix, = all 5.1 information mixed to these 2 channels

Kerpow, splat, instantaneously zonked into our component molecules.
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post #475 of 3606 Old 08-08-2005, 07:18 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Landroval View Post

I dont get it yet.

I have only one specific question about the bi-wire thingy. Let's assume I'm using a XR55 with 5.1 speakers where the front left and right speakers are bi-wired from A and B speaker-outs and I'm playing a DD/DTS 5.1 digital audio stream. In this case what will come out from the B output?

1) nothing
2) same as A (front channels without LFE and bass under XO)
3) fronts with bass under XO and possibly LFE (= large)
4) 2ch mix, = all 5.1 information mixed to these 2 channels

4), "B"L = FL + SL + SBL (if Dolby EX) + C + SW, "B"R = FR + SR + SBR (if Dolby EX) + C + SW

PS you do understand you can be playing 7.1 + "B", not just 5.1, right?
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post #476 of 3606 Old 08-08-2005, 07:35 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DigitalHT View Post

So does the bi-wire mode on the XR55 really makes a difference in the SQ?

Only if you can untilize the additional power. I can't. In a larger room, further from the speakers or with much less efficient speakers, it might. I'll leave that for others to decide.

David
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post #477 of 3606 Old 08-08-2005, 09:58 AM
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Just a heads-up for Canadians...

The Source (formerly known as Radioshack) has started selling this receiver for
$399.99 ($449 is the CDN MSRP) on their website. They offer free pickup at a
local store, $10.95 for 2-3 day delivery, or $1.99 for 5-7 day delivery.
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post #478 of 3606 Old 08-08-2005, 10:48 AM
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OK, like a lot of you I have ordered my XR55 and am now looking for speakers. A quick question for those of you who have your 55 -- do you find you mostly listen to music in stereo or in surround mode? I think if I will mostly listen in surround mode than I dont need to spend as much on fronts, so I might get something like the Athena Point 5s or the Polk RM6800; whereas if I will end up listening in stereo maybe I should spend a little more and get better fronts, like the Polk RM6900. (The 6800 fronts and rears are identical, about 7.5" with a single mid and a single tweeter, whereas the 6900 fronts are about 12" and have 2 midrange drivers.) All the surround modes sound terrible on my old receiver, but I think things have improved so much since then that listening to music in surround mode with the XR55 may be my default...
Steve
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post #479 of 3606 Old 08-08-2005, 01:05 PM
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I've been listening to both two channel and DTS/DD 5.1 and will be trying out the PLIIx shortly. Don't give up on any of these formats. Having not only a variety of music but also a variety of ways to enjoy them is a plus. Take advantage of it.
These are the mains that I have connected to my 55.

http://www.ascendacoustics.com/pages...m/cmt340m.html

Even in surround mode, don't skimp on the mains. There is almost nothing we can do to improve our music than have the best main speakers we can afford.

David
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post #480 of 3606 Old 08-08-2005, 01:25 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Steve Kahn View Post

OK, like a lot of you I have ordered my XR55 and am now looking for speakers. A quick question for those of you who have your 55 -- do you find you mostly listen to music in stereo or in surround mode? I think if I will mostly listen in surround mode than I dont need to spend as much on fronts, so I might get something like the Athena Point 5s or the Polk RM6800; whereas if I will end up listening in stereo maybe I should spend a little more and get better fronts, like the Polk RM6900. (The 6800 fronts and rears are identical, about 7.5" with a single mid and a single tweeter, whereas the 6900 fronts are about 12" and have 2 midrange drivers.) All the surround modes sound terrible on my old receiver, but I think things have improved so much since then that listening to music in surround mode with the XR55 may be my default...
Steve

steve-

i've gone full circle and have settled on surround mode, esp with this receiver. the sound is very clean and lends itself to multichannel output. i think the trickest thing to do is to calibrate the loudness of the surrounds- many music sources will play them extensively, and since they are close to your ears they will dominate, even at fairly extreme AVR settings in terms of distance, whereas films play them sparingly and they might almost disappear if you toned them down a lot. it's very tricky. but, worth it.
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