Anyways I had a half day off at work today so we got a early start on the 80.3 vs DV2. We couldn't really do a true A/B test as we didn't have enough cabling and everything is in a rack and would have made it very hard to do so. We tried the Dv2 first with a few movies, since it was already setup and ARC was already done. I brought my HDD full of flac files. I really did like the Anthem, it sounded great for music and movies, we tried it without ARC and with. The difference was substantial IMO. We watched some Tron, BHD, Battle of LA and played music from a few bands. We played the same movies and songs when we got to the 80.3. The subs were 2 x paradigm Servo 15's V2. Great subs but not HT standouts by any means (I had 4 at one point) The bass seemed well blended during the race scene in tron and I'm very familiar with the 100's as I also had them about 5 years ago just before I got my Sig 8's. I didn't have any complaints and would have been very happy with the DV2 in both HT/music with the studio 100's setup anyways.
We hooked up the 80.3. and did a 12 point pro calibration since we had some extra time. Again listening without audyssey (setup as best I could) and with pro. As most of you know, there is a pretty big difference again but I wanted to show my buddy it anyways. The first thing i noticed is exactly what Warp said, the way the bass was implemented was much more in your face in the tron race scene, it was stronger and seemed to be on edge a bit where the Dv2 was laid back (still decent though). I though the vocals were a bit better on the DV2 (keep in mind, we did the calibrations and just left everything however it calibrated it, I know we could have tweaked etc but we didn't have the time to do all that) but the subs really seemed to be blended better into the system with the pro. Music was similar, with the vocals seeming a bit stronger, more pronounced, this could have been because of the stronger bass in pro though. I'm not going to get into every little difference between them because, at least in the 4 of us that were there, there wasn't any sort of night and day difference. Just little stuff we noticed. IMO the DV did a bit nicer job in the music department, if just that the vocals seemed a bit better but the 80.3 was in all 4 of out opinions, was a HT winner. Everything seem much more alive and edgy, perfect for a HT IMO at least.
I'd be happy with either one and would be interested to see how the mx500 etc would compare to the DV2 with arc on. I dunno, I honestly believe tjhat Wingnut has something wrong or not setup right with the 80.3 as I personally just didn't hear a huge difference between the 2. Yes there were some differences like I stated, just nothing of any kind of game changer. But again, thats just me and those little things could have made a world of difference to Wingnut and was exactly what she was looking for.