Originally Posted by PrimeTime
The first line up there is what the purist stereophiles want. The second paragraph is what everyone else wants. Since "everyone else" is a lot of people, you end up manufacturing and supplying a thousand times more units for "everyone else" than for the stereophile group -- a billion-dollar effort that can crank out these AVR thingies that everybody wants as cheap (or even cheaper than) the simple stereophile units.
AVRs offer a staggering amount of integrated value. And they were doing it when smart phones were still in grade school.
I was reading at another site, Rotel came out with an "amplified processor" costing thousands and thousands of dollars. Seems that "integrated amp" is a bad term so amplified processor for the verbal win! Used to be that integrated amps were audiophile grade because they did not include that nasty AM/FM chipset for radio.
Receivers suck because they have AM/FM radio
Never mind an integrated amp has massive amounts of processors inside (if it is a good one) must keep out the tuner to make it "better". Somebody must of figured out the difference between a integrated amp and a receiver was just a tuner so ... change the name to "amplified processor".
I was a kid when the first Yamaha surround processor came out 30 years ago. It cost $1,999 and was a pre-amp processor. Pondered the cost to attach amplifiers and subwoofers...ran around $4,500 without speakers. Three lower power amps would run about $1,500 and the least expensive real subwoofer was over a grand.
Luckily, the computer/telecom industry took off and made billions of pieces of electronic hardware/processors and prices plummeted into the ground. DACs used to be on boards and cost hundreds of dollars, now they stuff 8 of them on a single chip for less than it costs for lunch.
Granted, this concept has touched everything, computers, laptops, phones, TVs, clock radios, washing machines, cars and everything else in our lives. It would be reasonable to assume this applies to audio also.
I did PA in the 90's, back in 1993 I went for a bi-amped pair of mains--cha-ching! 500 WPC Class AB amp $800, Class D amp for bass $1,060, electronic crossover $300, electronic limiter $300, two 1/3rd octave EQs $800--adjust for inflation, that would be around $6,000. These days I can pick up a pair of Crown XTi PA amps and have far more processing/limiting/EQ and power (XTi1002 for mids/highs, XTi2002 for bass bins) and it would run around $1,100. Never mind the costs/weight of a large rack, a dozen XLR cables and so on.
Car audio is the same way, back in 1986 built the first "system" and paid $600 for a (basically) 100W X 2 amp, $250 for the XO, $350 for a pair of 8 inch subs, cables and wood ran $1,300. Now I can get an Alpine Class D 500 watt amp with XO and highpass built in and a pair of long stroke 8's for $359. Same electrical load, much, much higher performance and when adjusted for inflation, it costs about 8 times less.
THIS is a great time to be in audio, be it multi-channel, PA systems or car audio. AVRs are great and they have basically become "Amplified Computers" with audio/video and computer processing rolling through your network. Throw a mic on the things, run the testing and play around with the PEQ to calm the room issues on the big screen.
Back to the garage to finish my surround speaker modifications, then time to recalibrate the Yammie to get all the signal levels/PEQ and sub channels right. Sure glad I don't have to use a SPL meter, test discs and all that jazz like back in the Jurassic era (1990's) Everyone have a great weekend!