Originally Posted by edorr
Read back my dialogue with Charles on the Ayre univeral forum. I had a debate going on (before buying the ud9004) about what would sound best on MC audio - ud9004 + Six Shooter, or Oppo 83 + CBIII with HDMI (I was still naively assuming Theta would deliver at this point). His view was the analog route would beat the HDMI setup. If you bought the Ayre instead of the Oppo things would get better because of the separate audio clock, but because of lacking ARC it would still be a very suboptimal implementtion of high rez MC audio. All this for the price of 10K fir the Ayre and another 10K+ for a very good HDMI capable SSP. The Marantz route would be cheaper and very likely sonically superior on MC. For 2 channel the Ayre promises to be beat the Marantz, but like steve I will be using the PS Audio PWD for this. In conclusion, if you spend 80% of your time listening to stereo CD and MC audio and video is secondary get the Ayre, a top notch 2 channel preamp with HT bypass and a half decent SSP (Integra comes to mind).
If BR and MC audio is important to you get the Marantz. Only problem is what MC analog preamp to get. No one in his right mind would buy a MC analog preamp at full price these days, but used Audio Research and Swtichman are rarely seen. You could also consider an SSP with good analog bypass (not sure which one to get). You could shop around for a six shooter and bare bones CBIII as a controller. This combo can be had for <3K i suspect.
I remember your discussion with Charles well, as I only found that thread recentlly, and just finished it a couple of days ago.
I have the mch analog covered, as I currently have a Denon 5910, running into a Parasound Halo P7. I also have a Nuforce AVP17 fed by my Dish DVR, and then running through the P7 in HT bypass mode. Little clumsy, but it works.
So, the Marantz would pretty much be plug and play for me, with no other upgrades necessary for now. Plus I found a killer deal on a new unit with full warranty, so I'll probably go that route.
But either way, I've recently discovered ADA products and am seriously considering either the ADA suite 7.1 HD at about 5.5K, or the Reference MachIV when they release the balanced version, about 7.5K.http://www.ada.net/products/ht/suite...e19776d526ccffhttp://www.ada.net/products/ht/cinem...sody_mach4.php
The most info I can find about these products comes from this thread on AVForums, our sister site in the UK. (Though the ADA is built right here in the good old USA)http://www.avforums.com/forums/audio...te-7-1-hd.html
Check it out: seems like an incredible bit of gear. I'm still reading the thread, but it's about the same length as the DX-5 thread, with much participation by the British distributors and techs. It doesn't have the ARC to my knowledge but does some sort of reclocking. A couple of the participants in the thread heard it once and immediately sold their Arcam AVR888s.
Ther is an Ayre dealer in Santa Fe I'm going to check out. I may know someone at that location, but I'm leaning towards the Marantz, just because it requires no immediate further upgrades.