Official Classe SSP-800 thread. - Page 5 - AVS Forum
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post #121 of 5817 Old 06-10-2008, 12:48 AM
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Originally Posted by rnrgagne View Post

Audyssey just came to market with a fully balanced SEQ ($5K) that should mate well with something like the 800.

I had the SEQ with the NAD M15 and I'd be hard pressed to tell the difference between it and the built in Audyssey XT "Pro" of the 9.8 with multi channel music and movies but oddly the SEQ was a bit better in 2ch.

My take on room EQ's, especially quality ones that operate in both the time and frequency domains, is there's no logical reason for Classe not to include some version because if one chose not to use it, it wouldn't affect the sound one iota. All it would require is more DSP horsepower and IMO would be an asset in most rooms if one did choose to use it. I think Classe is just "cheaping out" and using a lame excuse not to have it.
There's a better argument for not having a VP in the box, with newer 1080p displays and players having increasingly better on board processing and possible signal contamination to the audio. But I'm skeptical on that too.

I agree with Prof that it's a puzzling feature set to come out with at this point in the HDMI 1.3 game. Same with the Cary 11a only having two HDMI inputs...
Right now IMO the Denon AVP is the only one that got it 100% right feature-wise, it'll be interesting to see if they hit that number with the audio quality too.

The Cary is designed to go with an outboard VP of theirs that increases the HDMI inputs to 7/8. Featurewise the new Pioneer flagship got nearest to my requirement (Apart from being an Integrated amp), I dont see ILink or AC3-RF on the Denon.
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post #122 of 5817 Old 06-10-2008, 04:42 AM
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Originally Posted by rnrgagne View Post

I agree with Prof that it's a puzzling feature set to come out with at this point in the HDMI 1.3 game. Same with the Cary 11a only having two HDMI inputs...
Right now IMO the Denon AVP is the only one that got it 100% right feature-wise, it'll be interesting to see if they hit that number with the audio quality too.


Here is the thing I don't get. I don't believe Classe EVER intended on competing with the feature rich Denon. The only reason everyone else is, is because it is similar in cost. Classe could have included more features, but the cost would have gone up.

You can not compare the Denon to the Classe in any way other than cost. They have different internal parts. The Classe is using only Flagship parts, whereas the Denon is using mid-level parts.

The Denon is $7000 because of all of its features combined with the mid-level internals. If the Classe had all of those features, it would be closer to $15,000 or possibly be the previously announced $25,000 SSP-900. Then instead of people saying it doesnt have as many features as the Denon, people would be saying that it's too expensive.

Why not complain about the Mark Levinson? Or, why not compare apples - to - apples instead of a pair to an orange?

The Classe is what it is and no matter how much people complain about it, it isn't going to change.

Now, what Classe has said is, if there is demand for it, they will add features after the fact. So, if we can formalize/ organize constructive feedback (other than my mom can beat up yours) then they might listen.

How about, "I would like feature X, because when I heard it enabled in this product, I really liked how it added Y and Z benefits."

What it seems to me is that most people are looking at a spec sheet and saying "this product has this feature, but that product doesn't. I don't really know if I need it or not, but man that product sucks because it doesn't have it!" If you were to buy a sports car, would you want a corvette with a 6 cyl? or a stripped model with a nice beefy V8? The Denon is the 6cyl with sun roof, nice radio, sound dampening and air conditioning, and the V8 is stripped to just the essentials, but man does it fly down the highway and will do a quarter mile in under 9sec!

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post #123 of 5817 Old 06-10-2008, 06:03 AM
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Originally Posted by sikoniko View Post

Here is the thing I don't get. I don't believe Classe EVER intended on competing with the feature rich Denon. The only reason everyone else is, is because it is similar in cost. Classe could have included more features, but the cost would have gone up.

You can not compare the Denon to the Classe in any way other than cost. They have different internal parts. The Classe is using only Flagship parts, whereas the Denon is using mid-level parts.

The Denon is $7000 because of all of its features combined with the mid-level internals. If the Classe had all of those features, it would be closer to $15,000 or possibly be the previously announced $25,000 SSP-900. Then instead of people saying it doesnt have as many features as the Denon, people would be saying that it's too expensive.

Why not complain about the Mark Levinson? Or, why not compare apples - to - apples instead of a pair to an orange?

The Classe is what it is and no matter how much people complain about it, it isn't going to change.

Now, what Classe has said is, if there is demand for it, they will add features after the fact. So, if we can formalize/ organize constructive feedback (other than my mom can beat up yours) then they might listen.

How about, "I would like feature X, because when I heard it enabled in this product, I really liked how it added Y and Z benefits."

What it seems to me is that most people are looking at a spec sheet and saying "this product has this feature, but that product doesn't. I don't really know if I need it or not, but man that product sucks because it doesn't have it!" If you were to buy a sports car, would you want a corvette with a 6 cyl? or a stripped model with a nice beefy V8? The Denon is the 6cyl with sun roof, nice radio, sound dampening and air conditioning, and the V8 is stripped to just the essentials, but man does it fly down the highway and will do a quarter mile in under 9sec!

The Classe is using only Flagship parts, whereas the Denon is using mid-level parts.

jees you done a parts comparison have you

the classe hasnt even been released. let alone knowing part by part what it has inside it vs the denon

what I've seen of the denon has only impressed me

infact to the point theres not many supposed "high - end" av pre-pros I've seen with the kind of build and engineering employed.

Having seen the internals of the denon, I also dont think the added features it has (which are on discrete boards by the way) would add a total of half the cost of the base pre. a lot of the engineering I can see in it are in the power supplies and analog stages. Additionally I do not believe the provision of audyssey capability adds that much to the price of these pre-pros. they contain the procesing already. after all consider how even affordable av pre-pros & AVRs seem to easily manage them as part of their completed package.

additionally being an engineer working in manufacturing myself, I think it is always a vague area to discuss the costing make up of products. after all little do we know the manufacturer, wholesaler and dealer mark up, shipping, distribution, marketing and sales cost on these items. keeping in mind dealer markup in itself is often anythign from 50% to 100% ! and plus some brands do charge a price premium purely for the "priveledge" of owning a product of their name !

for prospective classe owners I suppose another alternative is you do want it all you could always add on the audyssey standalone for another $5k and a standalone Video processor for about $3k giving you an all around package for around $16k

you can buy something stripped bare, something that does it all or alternatively build up a system with boxes of your choice that will end up doing all you want... isnt choice great

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post #124 of 5817 Old 06-10-2008, 06:10 AM
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Originally Posted by sikoniko View Post

Here is the thing I don't get. I don't believe Classe EVER intended on competing with the feature rich Denon. The only reason everyone else is, is because it is similar in cost. Classe could have included more features, but the cost would have gone up.

You can not compare the Denon to the Classe in any way other than cost. They have different internal parts. The Classe is using only Flagship parts, whereas the Denon is using mid-level parts.

I agree that Classe does not intend to compete with Denon on price and features. The two are quite different in terms of the audience they serve and the nature of their business. Denon as a company has some significant advantages of scale over the Classe as well.

However I think you are being a little harsh on the Denon when you describe it as having mid-level parts while the Classe is only Flagship parts. The Denon is a fully balanced design using 4 DACs in dual differential mode per channel. Yes, the Classe uses a higher grade DAC than the Denon does, BUT the Classe also uses a IC based volume control as does the Denon. A true high end purist might be looking for a discrete volume control as is present on the Theta Casablanca.

If you look at dual differential fully balanced AVPs there aren't many, and the Denon plays in that league.

It will be interesting to hear the two side by side and compare the sound quality. It is nice to have choices.

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post #125 of 5817 Old 06-10-2008, 06:42 AM
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Here is an article relevent to all the talk about DAC and chipset quality in this thread. I think it is worth a read, and it pretty much confirms my personal experiences with high end pre/pros.

http://www.hometoys.com/ezine/08.06/hinton/chips.htm

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post #126 of 5817 Old 06-10-2008, 07:25 AM
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That's a big IF.

Care to elaborate?

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post #127 of 5817 Old 06-10-2008, 07:52 AM
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Originally Posted by ehlarson View Post

However I think you are being a little harsh on the Denon when you describe it as having mid-level parts while the Classe is only Flagship parts. The Denon is a fully balanced design using 4 DACs in dual differential mode per channel. Yes, the Classe uses a higher grade DAC than the Denon does, BUT the Classe also uses a IC based volume control as does the Denon. A true high end purist might be looking for a discrete volume control as is present on the Theta Casablanca.

Classe' evaluated in the listening room the top PCM1792 DACs configured in dual-differential mode during the development of the SSP-800 and concluded that it was debatable whether it offered any benefit over differential mode. The IC Classe' uses for volume control is top of the line too and I provided some links to it on the other forum for anyone's edification. What do we know of the part Denon is using?

The concept of discrete devices having a competitive edge is changing. Classe' is using some state-of-the-art technology and highest in class performance parts in the SSP-800 that will put discrete parts (their bulk, weight and cost) on the chopping block. Classe' is not cutting corners but they are cutting features that for the most part are not necessary or better utilized off board.

It will be interesting to see how all this translates to better performance in the listening room but nothing seems to indicate that it won't perform admirably. The message that I got from Classe' when I asked them what makes the SSP-800 better than anything they have done before the answer I got was...

"In general, I guess you could say the right parts for the job and good system architecture enable the SSP-800 to reach what for us is a new high. The sonic results are evident in virtually every parameter. It resolves so much information at every level in such a natural way that there’s more there, there, if you know what I mean."

As a current owner of Classe' equipment, this is good news.

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post #128 of 5817 Old 06-10-2008, 07:57 AM
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Originally Posted by dsmith901 View Post

Here is an article relevent to all the talk about DAC and chipset quality in this thread. I think it is worth a read, and it pretty much confirms my personal experiences with high end pre/pros.

http://www.hometoys.com/ezine/08.06/hinton/chips.htm

Indeed, the key is in the implementation.

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post #129 of 5817 Old 06-10-2008, 08:44 AM
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Some version of what? Audyssey? Classe has room EQ in the form of a 5-band PEQ for each channel and it uses the 64bit floating-point processing capabilities of the DSP to achieve high precision. If it nets you the same or better results (using one less A/D and D/A stage) in the process, then what difference does it make who supplies the means?

Why the rolleyes? This is my first post in this thread and jump on me like that? Are you some kind of REQ genius?
PEQ is pretty much useless without proper measuring equipment to utilize it. If you took the time to read my post instead of looking to argue for arguments sake you would have read that I was talking about on-board high quality EQ that works in both the time and frequency domains. It works in the DSP's and as such requires no DA/AD conversion.
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post #130 of 5817 Old 06-10-2008, 08:49 AM
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Originally Posted by Krobar View Post

The Cary is designed to go with an outboard VP of theirs that increases the HDMI inputs to 7/8. Featurewise the new Pioneer flagship got nearest to my requirement (Apart from being an Integrated amp), I dont see ILink or AC3-RF on the Denon.

Sure, but I was talking about it in the context of it being a stand alone unit. Good point on the Pioneer, but it's not a pre-pro.
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post #131 of 5817 Old 06-10-2008, 09:07 AM
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Originally Posted by sikoniko View Post

Here is the thing I don't get. I don't believe Classe EVER intended on competing with the feature rich Denon. The only reason everyone else is, is because it is similar in cost. Classe could have included more features, but the cost would have gone up.


That makes sense.

As to the rest I was comparing features and left quality to be determined. But your assertion about quality parts shows a lack of understanding about these things in general - you're buying into the hype. A top quality DAC can cost about $13.00 and Denon has four per channel. But that doesn't mean as much as the fact that Denon probably buys millions for all their products and Classe might buy in the thousands. Denon probably gets them for $5 and Classe probably pays full pull. So you're right, they can't compete on cost but it doesn't mean the MSRP with it's sparce features automatically equates to better internal components. The R&D of how they select and use these parts is what matters.
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post #132 of 5817 Old 06-10-2008, 09:14 AM
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Classe' evaluated in the listening room the top PCM1792 DACs configured in dual-differential mode during the development of the SSP-800 and concluded that it was debatable whether it offered any benefit over differential mode.

Interesting - Denon made the comment that the 1792 in dual differential mode doesn't offer any advantage over the 1796 in dual differential mode.

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post #133 of 5817 Old 06-10-2008, 09:19 AM
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Indeed, the key is in the implementation.

Yup.

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post #134 of 5817 Old 06-10-2008, 09:44 AM
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Care to elaborate?

OK. How can you know if the 5 band PEQ can do better until it is used and compared. 5 bands is pretty limited.

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post #135 of 5817 Old 06-10-2008, 09:51 AM
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Originally Posted by rnrgagne View Post

Why the rolleyes? This is my first post in this thread and jump on me like that? Are you some kind of REQ genius?
PEQ is pretty much useless without proper measuring equipment to utilize it. If you took the time to read my post instead of looking to argue for arguments sake you would have read that I was talking about on-board high quality EQ that works in both the time and frequency domains. It works in the DSP's and as such requires no DA/AD conversion.

I read your comments carefully. No offense intended but you were critical in your statement without justification. It's true PEQ needs the proper equipment and it should be left to one with the right credentials to achieve the best results.

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post #136 of 5817 Old 06-10-2008, 09:54 AM
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OK. How can you know if the 5 band PEQ can do better until it is used and compared. 5 bands is pretty limited.

Are you looking at the full spectrum or the part that counts? 5-bands is more than sufficient. You found 3-bands sufficient in your review of the PARC which later went on to become product of the year. Have you changed your mind?

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post #137 of 5817 Old 06-10-2008, 10:07 AM
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Are you looking at the full spectrum or the part that counts? 5-bands is more than sufficient. You found 3-bands sufficient in your review of the PARC which later went on to become product of the year. Have you changed your mind?

3 was sufficient in a good room and only for the bass. 5 would certainly work in that room but I would find it a bit limiting in my other room and, even that one, is reasonably well treated with acoustical device. So, is 5 insufficient? Mebbe. Mebbe not.

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post #138 of 5817 Old 06-10-2008, 10:10 AM
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only for the bass.

Isn't that the point?

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post #139 of 5817 Old 06-10-2008, 11:03 AM
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I read your comments carefully. No offense intended but you were critical in your statement without justification. It's true PEQ needs the proper equipment and it should be left to one with the right credentials to achieve the best results.

If you had indeed read my comments carefully, you would have understood that I was talking about DSP based RC that doesn't require D/A conversion...

I think I am justified in my critisism since the statement below reads like a cop out excuse to explain giving you less for your money;

Classe’ evaluated the popular Audysse MultEQ and found that its inconsistent results made it an inadequate option to include in the next generation processor.

Strange assertion in light of the fact that Montreals' other "high-end" manufacturer, Simaudio, chose to include the Audyssey MultEQ XT in their new $15K MOON P-8 don't you think?
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post #140 of 5817 Old 06-10-2008, 11:27 AM
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It will be interesting to hear the two side by side and compare the sound quality. It is nice to have choices.

I agree with this. On paper, and focusing on audio quality playback, the Classe is a better product, based on the sum of its parts.

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post #141 of 5817 Old 06-10-2008, 11:37 AM
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That makes sense.
The R&D of how they select and use these parts is what matters.

I agree with this. Which company has built their reputation on quality and which has built it on mass market, focusing on the last 10 years?

I find it surprising that more people aren't skeptical for Denon to pull of a high quality "niche/botique" product than they are for Classe to bring one to market.

To go back to my car analogy, its like saying Kia released a Ferrari killer and anyone who buys a ferrari is dumb because it doesn't have as many "features" as the kia.

What I want to know from the people arguing, are you truely interested in the Classe, or are you here to say that the Denon is the king and everything else is a waiste of money? Because if you are, you are waisting our time.

There is a market for the Denon and there is a market for the Classe. There is nothing wrong with either decision. The Classe unit has to speak for itself, just like the Denon does. The Denon has a leg up right now, because it is out.

Let me ask you this, do most people here have a local Classe dealer? until recently, I didn't.

IMO, Denon has a brand that more people are familiar with, because it is mass market. By releasing their new "flag-ship" model, they have come within a price range of the traditional high end market which has brought more exposure to the classe product. I say again, why aren't you bashing the Mark Levinson product for its price?

I wonder how familiar the Classe nay-sayers are with the Classe brand. Are they even familiar that Classe is owned by the B&W Group? Like-them or hate-them B&W makes some of the best speakers. The same quality R&D that goes into B&W goes into the Classe line as well.

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post #142 of 5817 Old 06-10-2008, 12:01 PM
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If you had indeed read my comments carefully, you would have understood that I was talking about DSP based RC that doesn't require D/A conversion...

I think I am justified in my critisism since the statement below reads like a cop out excuse to explain giving you less for your money;

Classe' evaluated the popular Audysse MultEQ and found that its inconsistent results made it an inadequate option to include in the next generation processor.

Strange assertion in light of the fact that Montreals' other "high-end" manufacturer, Simaudio, chose to include the Audyssey MultEQ XT in their new $15K MOON P-8 don't you think?

I understood clearly. You criticized the SSP-800 for not including an automated solution for room correction, indicating that you have a preference for it. It was safe to assume based on your comment... "Audyssey just came to market with a fully balanced SEQ ($5K) that should mate well with something like the 800." that an external solution would be a viable option to you. My response, which I stand by, was based on these remarks.

You see Classe's decision as coping out and you are entitled to your opinion. In return I see your insistence that Audyssey MultEQ XT come standard as one driven by a midfi mentality.

With respect to the CP-8 I think they are doing several things wrong and they are packaging those decisions in an $18K package (not $15K). You are welcome to it but I can find several better things to spend my money on like content.

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post #143 of 5817 Old 06-10-2008, 12:20 PM
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Originally Posted by RebelMan View Post

I understood clearly. You criticized the SSP-800 for not including an automated solution for room correction, indicating that you have a preference for it. It was safe to assume based on your comment... "Audyssey just came to market with a fully balanced SEQ ($5K) that should mate well with something like the 800." that an external solution would be a viable option to you. My response, which I stand by, was based on these remarks.

Nope, sorry, you read it to suit your needs. The large spaces between groups of sentences indicate a new paragraph.... i.e. a new thought to convey. The first paragraph you quoted above was a response to another post, the following paragraphs were my thoughts on the Classe and on-board EQ.
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post #144 of 5817 Old 06-10-2008, 12:21 PM
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Nope, sorry, you read it to suit your needs. The large spaces between groups of sentences indicate a new paragraph.... i.e. a new thought to convey. The first paragraph you quoted above was a response to another post, the following paragraphs were my thoughts on the Classe and on-board EQ.

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post #145 of 5817 Old 06-10-2008, 12:27 PM
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Originally Posted by RebelMan View Post


You see Classe's decision as coping out and you are entitled to your opinion. In return I see your insistence that Audyssey MultEQ XT come standard as one driven by a midfi mentality.

Hmm, very condescending and frankly, ignorant. That statement says more about you than it does about me.

Again go back and read my post - I did say any REQ that operates in the time and frequency domain.
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post #146 of 5817 Old 06-10-2008, 12:31 PM
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Originally Posted by rnrgagne View Post

Hmm, very condescending and frankly, ignorant. That statement says more about you than it does about me.

Again go back and read my post - I did say any REQ that operates in the time and frequency domain.

Please be honest. Do you have a genuine interest being here? If so then let's call a truce. If not...

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post #147 of 5817 Old 06-10-2008, 12:38 PM
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There is a market for the Denon and there is a market for the Classe. There is nothing wrong with either decision. The Classe unit has to speak for itself, just like the Denon does. The Denon has a leg up right now, because it is out.

Sikoniko,

Agreed...

Denon has put out a fine sounding product, that is very feature laden, and everything works. I think the Denon SQ has surprised many people. People are responding to this new unit in a positive manner.

Classe has a great reputation for quality, and we are waitng to hear its product. They are new to HDMI, but confidence is high they will nail it.

Denon and Classe are going after slightly different markets, but since they are in the same price range, people will compare them. I guess some of the debate here is normal.

IMO, Classe needs to really nail the sound quality on the SSP-800. Fortunatley for Classe, they have the ability. Time will tell, and I look forward to the release of the SSP-800.

BTW, I own Classe amps, the Denon Prepro, and B&W 800 series speakers. Can I stay in the club???

BTW, I will enter an opinion on Classe's decision not to include Audessey. I am guessing they did it because it doesn't always provide a SQ benefit, and peole spend a lot of time messing with it. I bet there would be lots of support questions with it.

In fact, those that do use Audessey, usually run it many times to get a setup they like. Some people that have it use it. Others don't (me included). With Classe taking a Purist type approach to music, thier decision not to include Audessey doesn't surprise me, nor dissappoint me. I don't think it was a money issue.

Darrell
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post #148 of 5817 Old 06-10-2008, 01:00 PM
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Isn't that the point?

Apparently, it is for Classe.

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post #149 of 5817 Old 06-10-2008, 01:06 PM
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Originally Posted by GoodSonics View Post

BTW, I will enter an opinion on Classe's decision not to include Audessey. I am guessing they did it because it doesn't always provide a SQ benefit, and peole spend a lot of time messing with it. I bet there would be lots of support questions with it.

And you think that a 5 band PEQ is simpler to optimize and will generate fewer support calls. The way to resolve the latter would be to exclude any EQ!

Quote:


In fact, those that do use Audessey, usually run it many times to get a setup they like. Some people that have it use it. Others don't (me included). With Classe taking a Purist type approach to music, thier decision not to include Audessey doesn't surprise me, nor dissappoint me. I don't think it was a money issue.

I agree with you that it was probably not a money issue but that doesn't change my attitude about it. As you point out, one can always choose not to use it.

If Classe can nail the overall sound quality from all sources for the asking price, they will have a winner. What I find amusing is all this contention over a product that has not been released.

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post #150 of 5817 Old 06-10-2008, 01:11 PM
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Originally Posted by Kal Rubinson View Post

Apparently, it is for Classe.

Should be for everyone.

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