Originally Posted by imagic
be so, but often that's not the case. I find the way the letter "S" is rendered in vocals might just be the biggest difference between AVR amps but there is more nuance to it.
N, it shouldn't be at all, what he's saying is plain idiotic
silly, just say it out loud and for many reasons - it's not necessarily all digital (how about speakers, huh?), the way you route things through even usual steps can make a difference, not to mention the plenty of different ASIC, setup, chipset, full set variations, etc.
Having just gone from a $500 (msrp) AVR to a $1600 (msrp) AVR in the past couple of days, this is much perfectly clear: People who's job it is to review these things are not 'making things up' when they hear differences, and the designers of high-end AVRs are not wasting their time when they 'tweak' the amplifiers. Furthermore, using a dedicated amp for the L/R mains takes it up yet another notch - this is my first 9.2 channel AVR and I finally get to use my XTi-1000 as a dedicated amp for my mains. It's the land of the law of diminishing returns, but there are tangible improvements to be made in terms of finesse when it comes to two different amps and how those tweaks are made determine the 'character' of the product.
Alas, the HK sound is just not that appealing to me. I liked Logic 7 a lot, but now I'm chillin' with "Neo: X MS + THX" on a Pioneer Elite SC-55 and there's no looking back.
Height channels are interesting but unless someone invests into 9-ch like you did he cannot switch between classic 7.1/Logic 7 etc vs front heights/sides - another diminishing return territory, I guess.