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Panasonic SA-BX500 Small Light Powerful - Page 20

post #571 of 699
speaking of ipods - does anyone know if the docks on the current panasonic TV's with them (model TC-L32X1 for example) feature the same connection?

If so that would be great as there would be more likelihood of getting one.

Sorry I can't help you gkorovilas, but I obviously don't have a dock (yet). - unlikely you could have 2 inputs active at once though...

Where and when did you get your dock by the way?

Any suggestions of where to get one?

EDIT: only place I could find was 'video direct', same as when I looked last time (about 6 months ago) - anyone brought anything from them?

Would the dock work with 2nd gen touch with no additional adaptors(the specs are unclear)? - Guess I'm gonna have to contact panasonic...
post #572 of 699
Hi eyerob,

I looked into getting the panny SH-PD10 which plugs into the option port. Here's a post with details
http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showt...2#post16407812 In the end I found that there are only a few "wins" by using this dock over a simple analog cable:
  • it supplies power to the iPod
  • the remote can control the iPod (limited though)
and that's about it. All iPod docks, with the exception of a single very very expensive one, are analog music connection only.

In the end, I found it better to plug an optical audio cable from my computer into the BX500 and use iTunes to play the music. Same music, better controls, and fully digital to the receiver.

Let us know what you come up with too.
post #573 of 699
Quote:
Originally Posted by TooLittleTimeZZZ View Post

Hi eyerob,

I looked into getting the panny SH-PD10 which plugs into the option port. Here's a post with details
http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showt...2#post16407812 In the end I found that there are only a few "wins" by using this dock over a simple analog cable:
  • it supplies power to the iPod
  • the remote can control the iPod (limited though)
and that's about it. All iPod docks, with the exception of a single very very expensive one, are analog music connection only.

In the end, I found it better to plug an optical audio cable from my computer into the BX500 and use iTunes to play the music. Same music, better controls, and fully digital to the receiver.

Let us know what you come up with too.

Thanks for the response. Very interesting to know that this isn't a purely digital to digital connection - I had hoped that it was...

I'm certainly not desperate for the dock - but it would be cool to just sit it in it's cradle and play from the remote.

I have some differences in my set up: my computer doesn't have optical out and it's in another room and I have the h/k 'sound sticks' computer speakers/sub, which I love... But I appreciate your advice

Still haven't got around to contacting panny about the compatibility of the docks that come with the TVs but I'll report back when I do...

Incidentally, what is the one purely digital dock? I heard that the pioneer 919 (that was one of my options) has a very good (digital?) connection with the ipod's - but this could just be marketing...
post #574 of 699
Hi eyerob,

It's the Wadia 170i Transport.

By the way, my computer didn't have optical out either, but I got a $10 card and it works great. Optical cables, from places like monoprice, aren't very expensive either. Another $25 even gets you a 100 foot cable, which is likely way more than you need.
post #575 of 699
Quote:
Originally Posted by TooLittleTimeZZZ View Post

Hi eyerob,

It's the Wadia 170i Transport.

By the way, my computer didn't have optical out either, but I got a $10 card and it works great. Optical cables, from places like monoprice, aren't very expensive either. Another $25 even gets you a 100 foot cable, which is likely way more than you need.

wow, that is expensive - more than I paid for the BX500 itself!

by "a $10 card" do you mean a computer sound card? - I've got a powerPC mac from 2005 and don't know it this is feasible and I do want to continue to use my h/k computer speakers...

I could (and have) just use a earphone jack to stereo (RCA) cord into the BX500.

Already have several optical cables(unused at the moment) from monoprice (beautiful cables - the silver premium ones) but thanks for the tip - I tell everyone about that site.

As I say, the dock would be more for convenience than anything and I mostly use the BX500 for HT and gaming.

Would you mind telling us how you confirmed that the dock is analog and not digital...I wish you were wrong
post #576 of 699
eyerob,

When I didn't have an optical out on my older macbook, I used the Airport Express to connect my music files to a Panny XR-57 wirelessly (music from your iTunes library is sent lossless to the Airport Express which has an optical out that can be connected to the receiver).

Its about $100, but well worth it. It also serves as an extension of your wireless network if you want it to. Note: its bigger brother, the Airport Extreme, does NOT have the capability to stream music files).
post #577 of 699
Quote:
Originally Posted by ejr2 View Post

eyerob,

When I didn't have an optical out on my older macbook, I used the Airport Express to connect my music files to a Panny XR-57 wirelessly (music from your iTunes library is sent lossless to the Airport Express which has an optical out that can be connected to the receiver).

Its about $100, but well worth it. It also serves as an extension of your wireless network if you want it to. Note: its bigger brother, the Airport Extreme, does NOT have the capability to stream music files).

Thanks for the tip - this may be what I end up doing, although I really should listen to all my cassettes/CDs/vinyl more!

I may end up getting a harmon kardon stereo receiver(with integrated phono amp) for my vinyl especially - as this is the weakest link in this receiver - may also be the <$50 phono pre-amp(TCC TC-750) I'm using now...

This is after all a digital receiver, which is why I hoped the ipod input was purely digital.
post #578 of 699
Hi eyerob,

Yes this $10 PCI computer sound card, but they don't list Mac as a supported OS so I guess that's not for you.

As to how I confirmed that the dock is analog, I found forum references and articles. Sorry I didn't save links to those, but there was a Wadia article somewhere talking about how they're the only licensee that Apple has allowed to use the digital output from an iPod. The article went on to say that it requires a custom Apple chip to decode the digital and preserve the DRM that they use. Apparently, that's required by Apple's agreement with the music industry to enable the iTunes store to sell their music.

I also found a bunch of reviews and measurements of the quality of the iPod analog output. It's really good, until you put a low impedance load on it like headphones. When plugged directly into the receiver via analog cable (this would work 3.5mm Stereo Male to 2RCA Male, though it's thickness is silly, to make it "premium". This one is more practical, where you just connect it to the receiver with any old RCA male-male cable you have laying around) it should be excellent.

Quote:
Originally Posted by eyerob View Post

...
by "a $10 card" do you mean a computer sound card? - I've got a powerPC mac from 2005 and don't know it this is feasible and I do want to continue to use my h/k computer speakers...

...Would you mind telling us how you confirmed that the dock is analog and not digital...I wish you were wrong
post #579 of 699
Quote:
Originally Posted by TooLittleTimeZZZ View Post

Hi eyerob,

Yes this $10 PCI computer sound card, but they don't list Mac as a supported OS so I guess that's not for you.

As to how I confirmed that the dock is analog, I found forum references and articles. Sorry I didn't save links to those, but there was a Wadia article somewhere talking about how they're the only licensee that Apple has allowed to use the digital output from an iPod. The article went on to say that it requires a custom Apple chip to decode the digital and preserve the DRM that they use. Apparently, that's required by Apple's agreement with the music industry to enable the iTunes store to sell their music.

I also found a bunch of reviews and measurements of the quality of the iPod analog output. It's really good, until you put a low impedance load on it like headphones. When plugged directly into the receiver via analog cable (this would work 3.5mm Stereo Male to 2RCA Male, though it's thickness is silly, to make it "premium". This one is more practical, where you just connect it to the receiver with any old RCA male-male cable you have laying around) it should be excellent.

Thanks for the suggestions and links and the explanation of the no digital out license from apple - bummer, it's definitely becoming a love/hate thing with them for me.

I prob. will just stick with the RCA cables (already have - sound OK but nothing like a CD thorough optical - unsurprisingly) for now and keep an eye out if panny releases a new dock for any reason (unlikely) - very interesting about the low impedance load - I'll have to do more research...

I've been rereading the thread and looking into doing the bi-wiring thing, I'll report back - although I need new speakers - by friend has some Paradigms that you can bi wire - maybe he'll swap for my KLH's

Let me say agian that I'm loving this receiver - it's such a blessing that it doesn't mess with the video signal - esp. after reading the nightmares on other threads.

Thanks again TooLittleTimeZZZ, and all involved in this thread - If it hadn't existed I wouldn't have got the BX500.

Rob
post #580 of 699
Hello all, I was wondering if there was a wireless rear kit still available for this receiver. I keep reading the SH-FX67 is the one, but it's not available for sale anywhere. Is there another/newer version that will slide in and work? Thanks!

PS - I compared my BX500 (been using it for several months) to a NAD C352 I bought for another system... at my listening levels, any differences are too subtle for me to pick out. I've been very happy with this receiver, and my new Energy RC10s positively sing with it.
post #581 of 699
Quote:
Originally Posted by rutgersftw View Post

Hello all, I was wondering if there was a wireless rear kit still available for this receiver. I keep reading the SH-FX67 is the one, but it's not available for sale anywhere. Is there another/newer version that will slide in and work? Thanks!

PS - I compared my BX500 (been using it for several months) to a NAD C352 I bought for another system... at my listening levels, any differences are too subtle for me to pick out. I've been very happy with this receiver, and my new Energy RC10s positively sing with it.

It seems everything to do with the BX500 (including the unit itself) was discontinued a while back - so I'm not optimistic, but you never know...

Let us know if you locate any - funny enough I was switching out my rear speakers today and could do with less wires!

Good to know that it compares well with the NAD - I know they have a good reputation - I was going to get a NAD phono pre-amp, but cheapened out...
post #582 of 699
I'm disappointed that there's been no announcement of a successor-amp at CES this week. The SA-BX500 on eBay went for over $500(!) which was too rich for my blood at the time, so I'm still lingering and longing for an SA-XR55 replacement. C'mon, Panasonic - step up to the plate!
post #583 of 699
I was looking at getting a SA-BX500 back when they were in production, and never did it. Now I want to get one, and can't find them anywhere. Does anyone know of anywhere, used or new, that I could buy one? It seems like everyone who already has it is holding on to it, there aren't any on ebay.
post #584 of 699
Wondering if this happening with anyone else. I have an Oppo 981 connected HDMI to DVDr and a Panasonic BD50 connected HDMI to BDPlay. When I select either (manual or Harmony) once it receives a signal from HDMI the display on the receiver reverts to TV. The picture stays on on the screen with no audio. Once I again select either DVD or BD on the receiver it stays there and plays fine.

Any ideas?
post #585 of 699
Anyone still looking for one of these? I'm probably going to sell mine very soon.
post #586 of 699
The last AVS member who had one for sale ended up getting over $500 for it on fleabay.
post #587 of 699
I purchased a used one for ~$300 including shipping on a certain auction website this week, so pending its arrival and successful installation I'm off the market.
post #588 of 699
Quote:
Originally Posted by Nathan_R View Post

Anyone still looking for one of these? I'm probably going to sell mine very soon.

I'm interested in your SA-BX500. Thnx
post #589 of 699
Quote:
Originally Posted by Nathan_R View Post

Anyone still looking for one of these? I'm probably going to sell mine very soon.

Nathan, I just sent you a PM...
post #590 of 699
I took delivery of my SA-BX500 via UPS tonight and, after letting it warm up some, replaced my SA-XR55 by connecting my other speakers & gear. Attached are:
  • Wharfedale Pacific Evo 40 towers (bi-wired), an Evo center and two Evo surrounds - no sub;
  • a 60GB PS3;
  • a Comcast Scientific Atlanta DVR;
  • a Panasonic DVD changer;
  • an Apple iMac via a long in-wall RCA-stereo cable run, serving as an MP3 jukebox;
  • and a Panasonic G-series 32" LCD TV.
First off, it's no worse than my XR55. Courtesy of the skills I acquired futzing with the earlier model's interface, it didn't take long to hook up and configure. The TV runs to both the AVR and the PS3 via HDMI, while the DVD player goes directly to the TV's composite jacks. The Comcast box is connected only to the BX500 via HDMI (used to use digital optical); the PS3 is jacked in via digital optical and the DVD player is using digital coax. The iMac runs to the CD input.

Last, I turned Viera Link on, because my TV & AVR can use that - just for kicks.

The BX500 did think my center was a Large speaker after auto setup, but I changed it back to Small. Frankly, all I hope the auto-setup did was to set the speaker levels and distance properly. Anything else should be gravy.

The radio auto-tunes better and reception is fine, though there's an odd desynchronization (delay?) present that the XR55 lacked. I was able to play another radio in another room with the former model and have the sound seem uniform & simultaneous, but now there's obviously two radios playing.

I might say that it's slightly more transparent than my XR55 while playing MP3s or internet streaming audio from my iMac, but that's really an academic debate to me. It's plenty good enough, as was the previous model.

I haven't had the chance to watch television other than yes-I-hooked-it-up-correctly, and I will say that HDMI does simplify the connection business. I would say that using HDMI points out one of the BX500's flaws: you can only reassign/rename one of the three HDMI ports. I can't have HDMI #1 be CABLE and #2 be GAME? That's just stoopid - bad Panasonic, no biscuit!

I'll live, and I knew this was the case ahead of time, but it's just sad to see a good piece of tech hobbled for no reason but a company's internal marketing politics. ("Panasonic makes DVD recorders and BluRay/DVD players, so we must reserve those slots!") I'm only doing 5.0 anyway, so digital optical/coax is adequate for my needs. But if I desperately wanted to run full HDMI, I'm unable to accurately label my inputs, which gets a nerdy thumbs-down from me.

That said, it seems like good gear so far, and an adequate and more future-savvy model than the XR55 it's replacing. I'm pleased with the purchase, and I'll see if there are any hidden gotchas over the days to come.
post #591 of 699
"I took delivery of my SA-BX500 via UPS tonight"

where did you purchase it????
post #592 of 699
Look up a couple posts and he posted that he got it at an auction site.
post #593 of 699
LOL...thanks....
post #594 of 699
@ebongreen - give it a little time. You will notice that the SA-BX500 is more transparent, open and has an ease to the soundn (compared to the XR55). You need to feed it a high-quality low jitter digital signal. I use a Behringer upsampler, with high quality digital cables (Zu Ash, glass toslink). I also believe power conditioners/power cords make a difference and use them. I am reasonably confident that my system bi-amping my Silverline Sonatina speakers produce really good audiophile quality sound.
post #595 of 699
Softwireengineer: Maybe a basic question here... I rip my cd's using EAC and play back the resulting FLAC's over optical wire for listening purposes. Does that qualify as low-jitter or even no-jitter?
post #596 of 699
Quote:
Originally Posted by ebongreen View Post

The radio auto-tunes better and reception is fine, though there's an odd desynchronization (delay?) present that the XR55 lacked. I was able to play another radio in another room with the former model and have the sound seem uniform & simultaneous, but now there's obviously two radios playing.

Just a theory here... could it be you have some sound processing mode enabled that's causing the slight time differential?

Just receiving and playing back radio should hopefully not be time shifted unless the there's some a/d d/a processing that is much slower on SA-BX500 than on SA-XR55... which seems unlikely.

Personally I find all the sound processing modes like hall, stadium, etc to sound awful and never use them. The only one I will typically invoke might be the all stereo because it supposedly only remaps channels and does not do any modifications.
post #597 of 699
Quote:
Originally Posted by Neild View Post

Softwireengineer: Maybe a basic question here... I rip my cd's using EAC and play back the resulting FLAC's over optical wire for listening purposes. Does that qualify as low-jitter or even no-jitter?

EAC/FLAC is good (I do the same). But jitter happens while transmitting the data to the receiver. So the digital cable should be good. Glass toslink is cheap and best. Also the source - either a player or streaming/PC device should have a quality clock. I found the more I paid attention to all these, the Panny, reflected the improvements very well.
I use a Squeezebox modified for better power supply etc. Similarly my Oppo is also modified for better performance and I use it because it can transmit SACD/DVD-A output in high-resolution over HDMI to the Panny (BTW, I suggest people to listen to these high-res formats with the Panny, absolutely stunning).
I used audiophile integrated amps (like AudioRefinement Complete) before and did not like them once I moved to the Panny. Panny is more transparent and dynamic.
post #598 of 699
Quote:
Originally Posted by SoftwireEngineer View Post

EAC/FLAC is good (I do the same). But jitter happens while transmitting the data to the receiver. So the digital cable should be good. Glass toslink is cheap and best. Also the source - either a player or streaming/PC device should have a quality clock. I found the more I paid attention to all these, the Panny, reflected the improvements very well.
I use a Squeezebox modified for better power supply etc. Similarly my Oppo is also modified for better performance and I use it because it can transmit SACD/DVD-A output in high-resolution over HDMI to the Panny (BTW, I suggest people to listen to these high-res formats with the Panny, absolutely stunning).
I used audiophile integrated amps (like AudioRefinement Complete) before and did not like them once I moved to the Panny. Panny is more transparent and dynamic.

OK good to know... I've fooled with different things like different audio cards, kernel stream settings, 48khz vs 96khz, etc. Haven't really set up much controlled testing of these variations though.

How would copper coax be compared to fiber and also with respect to jitter?
post #599 of 699
@SoftwireEngineer: Oh, I'm confident of the skills of the BX500, confident enough to stake that the limitations are elsewhere - like my ears. I'm not picky enough to deal with wiring & power insulation beyond what I've already got.

If I feel like overcoming my nerdy distaste for badly-labeled inputs, I can connect my PS3 via HDMI, which I couldn't with the XR55. This upgrade on my part was made more for future-proofing than expectations of immediately and obviously better sound.

@Neild: I'm positive that there's no "extra processing" going on. I've played with DPLIIx and Neo6 before on the radio before, so I know what delay that induces. The desync isn't nearly as obvious as the sound-processing delay (tenths of a second), but it is perceptible (hundredths of a second). And I've changed nothing else about my system - no new speaker wires, no new power gear, pretty much a straight swap.

*shrugs* I dunno what's up, but I can hear the difference. Somehow the BX500 is out-of-sync where the XR55 wasn't. Maybe the BX500 is faster - it's the "forward" of the two tuners.
post #600 of 699
For those interested, I noticed there is one of these receivers up for sale on ebay.
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