Why are there no ~$1000 pre-amps with HDMI switching? - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 9 Old 01-12-2007, 12:08 PM - Thread Starter
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A lot of us already have power amps and are now beginning to pick up components with HDMI outs for video and audio (HD-DVD, Blu-Ray, etc) and have HDMI projectors.

I don't care about video processing, just give me HDMI switching and the ability to extract the audio streams (don't care for True-HD or DTS-MA either as my players will decode these soon enough).

I really can't see spending ~$7k for an Anthem D2 or $4k (or whatever the price is going to be) for the new Denon pre-amp that is likely coming out this summer.

Sure, I could pick up a receiver for around a grand that will do what I want, but 50% of that money would likely go towards the amp section that I'll never use. I'd rather have 100% of my money going towards the pre-amp section.

In the not too distant past, I could (and did!) walk into a local B&M and pick up a very nice (for the time) pre-amp for around $1000-$1500. I'm still using that B&M pre-amp today (A Sony TA-9000ES), but it has no 5.1 inputs, let alone HDMI, so I need to upgrade.

Pre-amps seems to have become a "boutique" product priced in the stratosphere. What happened?
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post #2 of 9 Old 11-06-2007, 09:55 PM
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For that matter what about $500+ pre/pros that truehd/dtshd decode. Basically I need an Onkyo 605 without amps.

I am currently just waiting for the vhs vs beta version 2 to finish, so I do have a little time to wait for such a critter.

HDMI is an ok concept, but has put the AV audio gear back to the center of attention duties, disallowing for best of breed systems. I have a Panasonic Commercial 58 1080p plasma with 2 HDMI inputs and 2 component inputs, so the video feeds go direct to it from the souces to avoid any possible switcher "noise". The opti/coax audio goes to the receiver, albeit an older Sherwood 7106. I "upgraded" my amp portion of the 7106 via preouts to 5 Audiosource 5.3 monoblock amps. So ideally I only need a pre/pro that these days should be no more than 2 rack units (3.5") high.

Oh well, this will probably only be viewed by Anthem/Integra/Lexicon/etc owners as nothing more than a rant from a lowly cheap a55. I guess I'm going for the Onkyo 605 and preout to the Audiosource amps as well as moving my video connections to central point for distribution to the panel.

Or waste the $200 premium on a HiDef disc player that has 6 channel analog decoded out and connect that to the 7106's 6 channel inputs.
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post #3 of 9 Old 11-06-2007, 09:59 PM
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it is simple economics IMO

you will sell as a manufacture a ton of under $1000 surround receivers but very very few customers would have a power amplifier already and need just a pre-amp. I would imagine the ratio is hundreds to 1. Ie, if you build 10000 receivers to sell, you might only sell 200 preamplifiers only. The cost to produce these items just don't make sense if the margin per item is not high, hence the higher priced options only.
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post #4 of 9 Old 11-07-2007, 03:15 AM
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The Emotiva prepro is $899 and has HDMI switching.


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post #5 of 9 Old 11-07-2007, 04:26 AM
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The new emotivas come out Q1 2008, which is what I'm waiting for.
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post #6 of 9 Old 11-07-2007, 05:50 AM
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Lexicon makes a receiver and a preamp that has it. Hdmi 1.1 spec only.

Panasonic TC-P50ST60 plasma HD television, Onkyo TX-SR805 and PIONEER ELITE VSX-47TX receivers, Klipsch RB-75(2 pair) and RB-61 bookshelf speakers, Klipsch RSW-10, RSW-12(2), Velodyne HGS-12, HGS-18 subwoofers, PS3 80G, PIONEER DV-525 dvd player, Klipsch RS-42 surrounds, Klipsch RC-52 center channel
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post #7 of 9 Old 11-07-2007, 07:13 AM
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I've been waiting for almost two years as well Pclausen.....TWO YEARS!

I have a Proceed AVP2+6, which is arguably one of the best pre/pros ever made......but unfortunately, with all these new formats and connectivity issues, it is starting to become a little cumbersome to get it right.

Currently I Have a Toshiba HD-A2 player, which only has HDMI output for its new truHD formats, and converts everything to DTS @ 1.5mpbs thru its toslink output.......good right??! Not really The output from this is downmixed, and it is really REALLY muffled. Regular DD tracks from the SD DVD's sound better.

My next option would be to get a HD-XA2, and use a Zektor switcher and let the player do the decoding and use the analog outputs into my AVP2:



This would work just fine for the time being as well, but paying $500 for a "switcher" just seems pretty stupid to me. It would work as a video switcher as well, but still.

The next option would be to go with something like the Integra DTC-9.8 or the Onkyo equivalent, both of which are getting great reviews and have been preferred by some who have owned the likes of the Anthem D2 and Lexicon MC-12HD, which says a lot!!! For example:
http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showt...3#post12140413
The problem for me is, that I have NEVER been fond of the Onkyo sound, and their components over the past several years have left a lot to be desired. Add to the fact that there are Lip Sync issues that remain unsolved, and I'm a bit hestitant to jump on these early "multipurpose" players even with their tremendous attractive price and apparent performance:
http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showp...&postcount=602

I look at the new NAD offering, and still, limited options and connectivity. The upcoming Denon pre/pro is gonna be fully rich featured, but at 4-5k, no thanks! Lexicon? not really.

The closest thing I've auditioned that had the AVP2's acoustical prowess was the Halcro SSP100, but their HMDI upgrade is still some time aways, and their Customer support is not exactly the best.





and so my friend, I continue to search and wait............


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post #8 of 9 Old 11-07-2007, 07:51 AM
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Also, while I understand wanting a pre-amp, I don't see an issue with using a good receiver as a pre-amplifier only into a power amp. I have had a hard time talking myself into this as I have a lexicon MC-1 myself. Obviously, this unit is wellpast its prime as far as inputs etc go. However, I could sell it on ebay etc and probably come away with a new denon etc for almost no money
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post #9 of 9 Old 11-07-2007, 08:04 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pclausen View Post

A lot of us already have power amps and are now beginning to pick up components with HDMI outs for video and audio (HD-DVD, Blu-Ray, etc) and have HDMI projectors.

I don't care about video processing, just give me HDMI switching and the ability to extract the audio streams (don't care for True-HD or DTS-MA either as my players will decode these soon enough).

I really can't see spending ~$7k for an Anthem D2 or $4k (or whatever the price is going to be) for the new Denon pre-amp that is likely coming out this summer.

Sure, I could pick up a receiver for around a grand that will do what I want, but 50% of that money would likely go towards the amp section that I'll never use. I'd rather have 100% of my money going towards the pre-amp section.

In the not too distant past, I could (and did!) walk into a local B&M and pick up a very nice (for the time) pre-amp for around $1000-$1500. I'm still using that B&M pre-amp today (A Sony TA-9000ES), but it has no 5.1 inputs, let alone HDMI, so I need to upgrade.

Pre-amps seems to have become a "boutique" product priced in the stratosphere. What happened?

What's wrong with the Denon that is $899 brand new? It only has 2 hdmi in's and xlr outputs. Is that the reason?
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