Originally Posted by haverbach
Ok, so let's sum this up as it applies to these two critical parameters:
(1) assume an A/V receiver purchased specifically for its better-than-average sounding two-channel music reproduction (such as Arcam 600, NAD 775/785, or the Marantz 6003/7002/8002), and
(2) assume that the stereo speaker system is NOT full range, but very high quality monitors coupled with an appropriate subwoofer.
In such a system, the subwoofer is connected to the SW output on the receiver, and the Bass Management function of the receiver is engaged.
Now along comes this new Oppo 83SE. Yes, we read on Oppo's website that the new DACs are intended as an upgrade only where the analog outputs of the Oppo are utilized. Got it.
However, if the receiver's Bass Management is in operation, and if it is correct that this is a digital function, not analog, then this means that there is an additional analog-to-digital conversion, which, in turn, means that the upgraded DACs and additional $400 of the Oppo 83SE are wasted, and ultimately no better than the standard Oppo 83. Is that about it?
If so, what a shame. I've listened to TERRIFIC, higher-end music systems that incorporated speaker configurations of monitor pair coupled with an excellent subwoofer.
Yesterday afternoon I e-mailed the above question to Oppo Customer Service. Last evening I received their response, to wit: The benefits of the SE product are applicable to analog only, essentially entirely negated if the AVR or Pre/Pro redigitizes the signal.
So, anyone who uses smaller/monitor front speakers coupled with a subwoofer, and who utilizes the "base management" function of their AVR or Pre/Pro will gain NOTHING from the new 83SE.
While it may be too bad that Oppo didn't also upgrade the circuitry for sending out the initial digital signal (via HDMI or optical cable) (perhaps believing the AVR or Pre/Pro might denegrate it anyway), Oppo is nonetheless to be given credit for no BS and no Spin, forthrightly acknowledging that there is no reason to upgrade or purchase the 83SE unless the analog path is maintained.
For people like me who focus primarily on the sound quality of 2-channel stereo, but who cannot accommodate a floor standing, full range front speakers and thus must utilize monitors coupled with a subwoofer (and bass management of a AVR or Pre/Pro), we seem to be on the technological cliff. It ain't getin' any better until a new/improved technology comes along.
Any other ideas?