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Panasonic SA-BX500 Small Light Powerful - Page 7

post #181 of 699
Jettore,

You may be correct. I don't see Panasonic advertising on the site now. Very weird since I've looked through that site (borders rewards perks) for Panasonic deals for the past 1.5 years, and now its gone. Sorry everyone, I've lead you all astray. Guess I got grandfathered in by Panasonic since I've ordered through their employee program in the past when it was available through borders rewards perks.
post #182 of 699
I also signed up and did not find the info. Was going to get an HK, but at this price I can get rid of the HDMI problems I have had with my SA-XR57 for not that much and have something more satisfying until either Panny puts out a more feature filled digital receiver, Pio puts out more digital receivers with fewer of the lacks noted in the Audioholics review of the 07 model, or I can afford to go with separates with an amp like the Wired 4 Sound models or at least go higher end if I am forced to abandon the Class D digital arena.

Anyway, if someone who knows can post or PM me on how to access this price through the Borders Perks program I would be highly appreciative.

Thanks,

Chris

Quote:
Originally Posted by jettore View Post

I signed up too and don't seem to be able to find how to get to the Panasonic access. How did you get there?

Thanks
post #183 of 699
It looks like Panasonic doesn't offer the Employee Purchase Program to Borders Rewards Perks members anymore (except those of us who got grandfathered in and created an account with Panasonic - which is the only reason I still have access). I'm sorry for posting incorrect information. I was unaware that they separated themselves from Border Rewards.
post #184 of 699
Quote:
Originally Posted by dm View Post

I wonder why the BX500's are at blow out prices, maybe a new model is coming out?

The economy? Perhaps they weren't selling at $800, so they are reducing inventory. Given that J&R has a cut price I would speculate they are getting terms from Panasonic to move units. Hopefully they don't exit the business.

But a new model would be interesting too. Pair this with a DVDO Edge, and its only lacking room correction.

Mine has shipped from IL, arriving tomorrow, shame the room isn't done and I am out of town this weekend.
post #185 of 699
SOLD OUT at the panasonic web site. That was fast.
post #186 of 699
Not a lot of folks know about unique sonic characteristics of an "all digital" receiver or 'Class D' amp. So Panasonic's MSRP of 800$ for SA-BX500 sounds unrealistic when this receiver doesn't offer features like audyssey mutliEQ, video up conversion or even an OSD which most conventional receiver in market would offer for same price or lower.
post #187 of 699
2 quickies...

Does this have the HDMI pass through that has been mentioned in other receiver threads? (audio/video through the HDMI cable--not just video)

What exactly does this mean -- Doesn't upconvert analog video to HDMI. What do they mean by analog video? My sources are HDMI (ps3/Toshiba HD DVD and my cable box) and component - XBOX 360...
post #188 of 699
Quote:
Originally Posted by homersimpson2009 View Post

2 quickies...


What exactly does this mean -- Doesn't upconvert analog video to HDMI. What do they mean by analog video? My sources are HDMI (ps3/Toshiba HD DVD and my cable box) and component - XBOX 360...

I'll tell you the second one - It does not transcode compsite/S video or component to HDMI. With those sources you will need to run at least a component cable (don't know if it transcodes analog to component) and an HDMI cable to your display.
post #189 of 699
I'm cosidering getting this unit with the current JR sale going on, and was hoping some owners could clarify a couple things for me. I went through this thread, and the manual, and am still not 100% clear.

1) I currently have a 6.1 speaker setup. I'm planning on moving to 7.1 eventually, but not for a few months at least. With my current Sony STR-DG810 receiver, when a 7.1 lpcm signal is sent from my PS3 the two surround back channels are put together into the one surround back speaker that I currently have. Is that what this receiver does as well?

2) Anyone with a Logitech Harmony remote, can you tell me if you can switch directly to the BD, SAT, and DVDR inputs without scrolling through all the other inputs? I only plan on using those three, all over HDMI for video and audio, so I only care if you can switch directly between those three. Thanks.
post #190 of 699
Quote:
Originally Posted by tfoltz View Post

It looks like Panasonic doesn't offer the Employee Purchase Program to Borders Rewards Perks members anymore (except those of us who got grandfathered in and created an account with Panasonic - which is the only reason I still have access). I'm sorry for posting incorrect information. I was unaware that they separated themselves from Border Rewards.

You are a gentleman and a scholar!!!!

I appreciate your post. Thanks again.
post #191 of 699
Quote:
Originally Posted by smeg36 View Post


2) Anyone with a Logitech Harmony remote, can you tell me if you can switch directly to the BD, SAT, and DVDR inputs without scrolling through all the other inputs? I only plan on using those three, all over HDMI for video and audio, so I only care if you can switch directly between those three. Thanks.

I use a logitech harmony remote and the SA-BX500 is in the harmony database of codes. The remote that comes with the BX500 has dedicated single key press buttons for TV, DVDR, Cable/SAT, DVD Player.
post #192 of 699
On a total impluse purchase, I pulled the trigger on one of these through EPP yesterday afternoon. Was set to go with the typical Onkyo or Denon but have been pleased with the Panny 58" 800U & BD60, figured I had to give this thing a shot at the price point.

Was initially concerned that it doesn't upconvert, but after educating myself more on that topic, I think all I really need is pass-through (which it sounds like this thing has, whether its on or off if programmed properly).

Definitely not an audiophile but looking for a nice soundstage. Can you guys tell me what I should look for in a 5.1 system to compliment this unit? I understand this is a speaker question and I don't want to derail this thread, but in terms of efficiency is there numbers or a range I should be looking for? Going with bookshelfs and probably an SVS for sub.

Appreciate any quick pointers and then I can dig around more in the speaker forum. If I post that I've got this Panasonic unit, the first thing I'll get over there is that I should have got an Onkyo or Denon and I just want to avoid that debate.

I'm guessing efficiency is good, but don't really know what that means in terms of stats to look for.

Thanks,
DP
post #193 of 699
Quote:
Originally Posted by dm View Post

I use a logitech harmony remote and the SA-BX500 is in the harmony database of codes. The remote that comes with the BX500 has dedicated single key press buttons for TV, DVDR, Cable/SAT, DVD Player.

I added the SA-BX500 to my Harmony software last night just to see how it was set to change inputs, and by default it was set to Method 1 to scroll through each input until it gets to the correct input. So if I only use the Cable/SAT, DVDR, and BD/DVD inputs, could I switch the Harmony software to Method 2 to have it directly switch to the given input? Thanks, I just want to be sure it will do what I want before buying it.
post #194 of 699
Quote:
Originally Posted by smeg36 View Post

I added the SA-BX500 to my Harmony software last night just to see how it was set to change inputs, and by default it was set to Method 1 to scroll through each input until it gets to the correct input. So if I only use the Cable/SAT, DVDR, and BD/DVD inputs, could I switch the Harmony software to Method 2 to have it directly switch to the given input? Thanks, I just want to be sure it will do what I want before buying it.

I am currently using method 2 and only require the Cable/SAT, DVDR, and BD/DVD inputs for mysetup. I think you are safe with method 2 for the Cable/SAT, DVDR, and BD/DVD since there are physical buttons on the original panasonic remote for those inputs.

If you need to go beyond those inputs, you need to hope that there are descrete codes in the harmony database or switch to method 1. I have not had the need to do this so I cannot tell you how it would work.
post #195 of 699
I'm catching up on the recent posts, so bear with me a moment.

I too am happily controlling my SA-BX500 with a Harmony One remote. I do not scroll through the input, as I access them directly. If you set up your activities (i.e., watch TV, listen to FM, watch DVD, etc.), you can program the appropriate input for the AVR. I have no problem switching activities with the unit already powered.

To answer homersimpson2009's first question, the SA-BX500 does HDMI pass-through (at least for HDMI sources). I can turn off the receiver and still get HDMI video and audio from my sources (Blu-Ray, DVR, and AppleTV). I just need the AVR to be on the appropriate input before powering it off.

-SUO
post #196 of 699
Pefect, that's exactly what I wanted to hear about the Harmony remotes. Now if anyone can let me know how it handles 7.1 audio with a 6.1 setup, I'll be set. I read through the manual, and it wasn't very clear at all on a 6.1 setup. I don't remember even seeing which of the surround back terminals it should be connected to, left or right.
post #197 of 699
I see this SA-BX500 receiver heavily discounted, and I'm getting ready to make the jump to Blu-Ray (probably a Panasonic DMP-BD80K) and move from primarily component/SPDIF connections to HDMI.

I look at Panasonic's dedicated AV receiver line-up and it seems lacking compared to companies like Onkyo. It seems that they are more interested in HTiB systems (say it isn't so). Do you think Panasonic will always make a fairly high-end dedicated receiver?

My current system:
Panasonic TH-46px850u 46 1080p Plasma
Panasonic SA-HE200 6.1 AV Receiver (130w x6)
Panasonic DVD-S35 Progressive Scan DVD Player
Scientific Atlanta 8300HD DVR (TW)
MediaPortal HT-PC (via RGB/SPDIF)
JBL Speakers (6 total - mostly NorthRidge series some a little older)
Infinity BU-2 Sub-Woofer (100w via low-line level)

My draw to a new Panny receiver is because my SA-HE200 has performed flawlessly. Also, it would allow increased functionality with my other Panasonic components via its VieraLink/HDAVI Control. Finally, it seems that after they have been out a while, the street prices tend to fall more within my current budget :-)

So, are these only being discounted because a new one is coming out? If I want one, do I have to act now or do you think there will be a 2009/2010 model?
post #198 of 699
panasonic has always had a weird marketing strategy for their AVR's.

But the thing that makes them unique, is the price point at which panasonic sells their digital amps that they have been using since the XR25/45/55/57 model days. For playback of digital sources PCM/DD/DTS and the newer blu-ray digital sources these amps really shine keeping the audio in the digital domain all the way to the last stage before the speakers.

Panasonic seems not to even know what a gem they have and have appeared to exit the AVR business at least one in the last few years. The BX500 was a suprise, given that at CES2008 it appear that they had killed the whole AVR business and retreated to a HTIB only strategy.

I hope that the recent blow out of the BX500 prices signals a new line of AVR's, but who can say?
post #199 of 699
I have two XR55s for HT and two XR55s for two channel systems. I'm thinking of picking up two BX500s for the HT rooms due to the newer prices. My older HD TVs do not have HDMI connections though, only component. I will eventually replace these TVs, but not until they fail. Is it worth it to pick up the BX500 even though my TVs can't use HDMI? Could I run HDMI from a PS3 to the Panny and a component to my TV to get the HD audio and have the picture go via component? If not, is it even worth it to upgrade the receivers?
post #200 of 699
Yes you can do this. I do this with my PS3 and XR57 since I could never get the HDMI to DVI video connection to work through the receiver with my Hitachi RPTV.

Personally, I think it is more than worth it for the audio both on movies and some of the new audio only BD titles coming out. At the current prices this model can be found at it seems like a much better choice than it did at the release price.

Regards,

Chris

Quote:
Originally Posted by SteveSatch View Post

I have two XR55s for HT and two XR55s for two channel systems. I'm thinking of picking up two BX500s for the HT rooms due to the newer prices. My older HD TVs do not have HDMI connections though, only component. I will eventually replace these TVs, but not until they fail. Is it worth it to pick up the BX500 even though my TVs can't use HDMI? Could I run HDMI from a PS3 to the Panny and a component to my TV to get the HD audio and have the picture go via component? If not, is it even worth it to upgrade the receivers?
post #201 of 699
I can't decide if I should just keep using my XR55s for HT until my current first gen HDTVs have to be replaced. I could buy the SA-BX500 for under $300 today or wait and buy whatever future receivers are out there when I replace my TVs. Is using the SA-BX500 with component and optical out an upgrade over using the XR55 the same way? If not I may not want to lock myself into receivers that would be outdated compared to future technology.
post #202 of 699
Quote:
Originally Posted by SteveSatch View Post

I can't decide if I should just keep using my XR55s for HT until my current first gen HDTVs have to be replaced. I could buy the SA-BX500 for under $300 today or wait and buy whatever future receivers are out there when I replace my TVs. Is using the SA-BX500 with component and optical out an upgrade over using the XR55 the same way? If not I may not want to lock myself into receivers that would be outdated compared to future technology.

XR55 vs BX500 (when not using HDMI):
The BX500 does not support advanced dual-amp for 5.1 (only in 2 channel mode). The XR55 supports advanced dual amp for both 2.0 and 5.1 (The XR57 did, does the XR55?). The BX500 fixes the LFE bug over the XR55 (I think).

Also, if you are only using spdif (optical/coax) for your audio, you are not able to take advantage of the advanced audio formats available over HDMI (DD+, DTSHD, etc) thus not really taking the advantage of the full feature set of the BX500.

The only reason I would buy the BX500 now in your situation, is if you believe that in the future the BX500 will be discountinued and not replaced with another panny digital amp and if you believe you will not be able to find a BX500 when you want it.
post #203 of 699
The 55 does not tri amp on 5 channel, just two. "Softwarengineer" says the 500 sounds than the 55/57 better even without the tri amping...I think only the 57 had the LFE bug, not the 55.

I'll be replacing one tv within six months for one with HDMI so I expect I'll get at least one BX500. The other HDTV I have is a Pioneer 643 that has a really great picture and I don't want to replace it unless it breaks. I would just be using component for picture and optical or coax for audio, unless I was able to send component to the tv for picture and HDMI to the receiver for sound. I just don't trust it will work until I try it.

I don't know if it would sound better than the XR55 I use. At under $300 delivered it's hard to pass up and I feel like buying two because of the deal. Who knows what will be out there in a few years though, maybe a more powerful Panny with room EQ and all the bells and whistles for under $500.
post #204 of 699
Hi all, I'm a xr57 owner who has been reading these forums for about a year.

I'm in the same boat as Steve and many of you. In my case, I use my Panny mostly for streaming music from my laptop, I'm more of a music junkie than an movie fan. They are PERFECT for anyone who wants to enjoy everyday audio from their computer without needing to feed a separate DAC.

Panasonic's "approach" to these receivers baffles me, its as if this little sector of their electronic kingdom is a bastard child / after thought. Which is a real shame.

Panasonic was going to exit the receiver business after the 700...and then they come back with the Bx500. So where are we now? I really wish these guys had some balls and faith:

1. Make a sturdy, quality receiver, 200 watts per channel with more of the higher end features, parts and finish, that can upconvert.

2. Realistically price it from the beginning, and be forceful and unapologetic about the reasons it is "cheaper" in the advertising (no need for heat sinks, lower weight, less raw materials).

3. Let the audio snobs suck it...class D's will be a big part of the future, and they do sound fantastic. They should let the technology speak for itself and not be shamed by so called golden ears. They should make the point to the consumer market that this is not a mid-fi technology (Bel Canto anyone?) and back it up with a higher end receiver.

Steve, I'm with you. There are many variables going through my mind. Is there going to be a successor before the era of affordable electronics is over? Is Panasonic going to wake up and realize the potential they have with these receivers, or keep doing everything half-assed and with a bi-polar marketing strategy before they just give up?

Do they read these message boards? They must.
post #205 of 699
I totally agree with you, ejr2.
post #206 of 699
I already own five XR55s They kept being so cheap I bought more as backups in case mine die. Newer technology may be needed for HT setups, but these receivers are perfect for two channel systems and I run two of those and I'm hoping to setup a third I decided I am going to buy two BX500s for my two HT setups.
post #207 of 699
I hedged my bets as well. I bought an extra xr57 when I heard that Panasonic was going to discontinue making receivers. I got the very last unopened one at J&R. My thought process was the same as yours, and also considered having one of them modded in the future. Its still in the box.

There are some great threads on modding Panny's, which are enlightening, and the source of my frustration. If Panasonic wanted to, they could build a receiver with some slightly more upscale "guts" (cables, power cords, coils, transistors and numerous other parts I admittedly have no understanding of). Yes, they sound great, but for just small bump in the price range, they could be even better.

It would also be nice to know that one could upgrade to better speakers in the future, if they chose to. I have fallen in love with Class D, and for now, living in an NYC apartment, the Panny is more than sufficient. But the lack of watts limits one from bumping up to some of the more power hungry speakers. I would be dismayed at having to go back to bulky, inefficient amps. But to get true jaw dropping audio, the only choices right now are needlessly expensive receivers (with far too many bells and whistles), or the even more bank account draining world of separates.

This time around, It would be nice to get a clear answer from Panasonic. (Are you going to stay in the game or not?) Let us know so we can make clear decssions.

I think its the least they could give their loyal consumers who have stuck by for a very a long time (some since the xr25), despite the arrogant lashings by magazine editors and other "experts." Why jerk us around...yet again?

Ultimately, a Class D that would compete with the higher end Denons, Sony's, Pioneers and others in power, but had a lower price point due to its efficiencies, could be wonderful (and successful). A solid receiver that will last years, not just until next year's model.

Unfortunately, Panasonic's history of awful marketing and sales strategy of these receivers has given them a bad name. It may be too late, and we may have to wait for another manufacturer to make the leap. Hopefully, some one will pick-up where Texas Instrument left off and continue work on the T-chip as well.
post #208 of 699
How would a record player pair with this receiver? I just got a technics 1200mk2(and love it)... would the sound suffer with the conversion to digital? - using a TCC tc-750 preamp - wanted to get and still may - a Yaqin ms12 (from memory) TUBE preamp.

I also plan to use it for the audio(HDMI) from a PS3 - mostly games and some blueray... also a cassette deck, a CD player and I plan on getting a panasonic EZ 48vk DVDR/VHS combo(yes I want to use all my old and new formats!) in the near future as well as a panasonic plasma(so the Viera link will be useful I guess).

My speakers are: LR: KLH research 10(look those up!); C: BIC america FH6 ; sub: BIC america F12 ; side surrounds: Sears, Roebuck and co.(made in Japan - got at goodwill) ; rear surrounds: BIC america V44s. - all as far as I can tell are 8ohms.

Obviously, listening and trying would be ideal, but I'd rather not return anything and was hoping for any advice.

My other options would be: Harman Kardon 254 or Pioneer avr919ah- coming out.

I'm not looking for huge power - just something that would receive all of my sources simply and effectively - and with good sound...is the panasonic 'warm'(subjective I know) enough....?


The bi-amping is new to me - (as is home theater in general - if you couldn't tell!) but I may give it a try in the future...

The digital to digital advantage makes sense to me as far as my PS3 goes but analog...? I guess I can still the old stereo sony str de135 I was given for my analog souces - but it would be great to get a reciver that recieves everything well..I guess nothings perfect...and life would probably be boring if it was(now I'm rambling)

Thanks for any advice....
post #209 of 699
I read today in a review that the bx-500 does not use TI amps, but an all in one single chip design. It was a German magazine I think. If that is the case and the chips are different than the xr series then I am not sure if the sound quality would be as good as the older series, I got the impression that this design is of lower quality.
post #210 of 699
Quote:
Originally Posted by mbonikow View Post

I read today in a review that the bx-500 does not use TI amps, but an all in one single chip design. It was a German magazine I think. If that is the case and the chips are different than the xr series then I am not sure if the sound quality would be as good as the older series, I got the impression that this design is of lower quality.

maybe it is just the DD/DTS decoder chips that are different since the BX500 supports the newer BluRay audio formats.

I don't know, but the literature/brochures for the BX500 make it sound like a very similar feature set to the XR series of amps, right down to the dual amp capabilities.
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