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Best Surround Processor Currently Available? - Page 26

Poll Results: Best Multi-Channel processor currently on the market?

This is a multiple choice poll
  • 11% (23)
    Classe SSP800
  • 10% (21)
    Bryton SP3
  • 1% (3)
    ADA Mach IV
  • 13% (27)
    ADA Mach IV+Trinnov
  • 20% (42)
    Datasat RS20i
  • 15% (32)
    Theta CB3 HDMI + Extreme Dacs
  • 5% (12)
    Krell Evolution 707
  • 11% (24)
    Mcintosh MX151
  • 7% (15)
    JBL Synthesis with SDEC 4500
  • 14% (31)
    Other (comment on your answer)
207 Total Votes  
post #751 of 817
Quote:
Originally Posted by stevekale View Post

We could argue about this all day long. If Theta says in early October that they will be delivering in 2 months and they are doing so in mid-December I'd say they delivered. But it's worth $70 to shut you up - will it shut you up?

Wow! As an objective bystander, I'm really surprised by the sore loser attitude. 2.5 months is not 2 months. Between you and bigbrother52, I'm disappointed. I think Craig brought some "class" though, with his response.

Dave
post #752 of 817
Quote:
Originally Posted by thezaks View Post

Wow! As an objective bystander, I'm really surprised by the sore loser attitude. 2.5 months is not 2 months. Between you and bigbrother52, I'm disappointed. I think Craig brought some "class" though, with his response.

Dave

I agree. I'm a CB3HD owner, but I'm not surprised at all that they're behind schedule. I definitely wouldn't have taken a bet on a delivery date, but if I did I'd just pay up.

I'm consistently surprised at the general negative attitude showed to "thebland". So what if he has a different opinion? Just agree to disagree and forget about it. We're all here to discuss aspects of our favorite hobby so, like "thebland" suggests, drink some wine and take it easy smile.gif

That's why I stopped posting a lot in the Theta forum - there's too much negative energy (to use a new age term) in that room - it's a big ego scene for the most part.

It's always a rollicking good read, though! biggrin.gif

To quote that eternal bard of our times: "can't we all just get along?"
post #753 of 817
Maybe it's cultural thing but an exchange such as the below doesn't constitute agreement to a bet where I come from.
Quote:
Originally Posted by stevekale View Post

I'll take your money. You're pretty confident. What sort of odds are you offering?
Quote:
Originally Posted by thebland View Post

It's a suckers bet (for you). But I'll put up an '06 Ken Wright Cellars Pinot (Savoya) that is drinking nicely now. Just had a biottle and have a few left. I think I paid $70 five years ago.
The only deadlines Theta makes are missed ones.biggrin.gif

60 days from CEDIA until we see one here at AVS. I'm sure Steve or some other Theta sycophant will be number #1, first to receive!wink.gif

Quote:
Originally Posted by stevekale View Post

A single bottle of '06 pinot? You're kidding, right?

Where I come from, you need to agree the odds and the consideration to conclude the bet - quite often with words to the effect of "ok, you're on" rather than my final words on the subject which were "You're kidding right?"

(BTW I have no idea where you got "60 days from CEDIA".)

But....as I said, I'm happy to send Bland a bottle of good NZ pinot with a view to achieving to goals: (1) damping the rhetoric and (2) promoting a little slice of my home country. :-) Bland, I await your PM.

Ant, to understand "general negative attitude" you observe I think perhaps you have to consider the "general negative attitude" Bland has had towards Theta for some time. Personally I enjoy the good banter, although I do think it goes too far at times (vehemently so, from both sides), but clearly it gets under others' skins. Having a tag line of "Nostradamus of HT" is always going to start people off on the wrong foot in any event.

As to the Theta thread, yes I agree they can be a tough bunch (one or two in particularly). But like any Internet forum you roll with the punches and try to sift through rhetoric vs genuinely disappointing behaviour. There's a lot to be gained from those passionate about the products they own. You just kind walked into tough crowd in an awkward manner - I'm not surprised you got the reaction you did given the way you kicked things off but if you are into Theta it's worth persevering with thicker skin.

As to Theta's ability to deliver within sight of announcement, I've been very critical of this in the past - and I've owned Theta since 1994. I have a lot of sympathy for Bland's view. But in this case I think they're finally getting it and making sure they deliver as promised. As to "2.5 months is not 2 months" well I guess we're not splitting hairs that finely. I think even Bland would agree that the accusation against Theta was that they couldn't deliver within months (years?) of previously posted deadlines/expectations. In that context 10 days is neither here nor there. I think it looks like they will do a much better job on this upgrade roll-out even if I have one less Christmas present to open.
post #754 of 817
I'm amazed that you're still going on about this. Everything seemed so gentelmen-like at the beginning of the bet, but sour grapes at the end. I suppose if I bet the spread on a game with some folks at work, and I end up missing it by one point, I should complain about splitting hairs, etc. Nope, where I come from, we don't do that.

If I were Jeff, I'd say forget it - it's not worth it.

Dave
post #755 of 817
Hello,

I spent an hour or so sifting through this thread to get a feel on the latest and greatest, but the verdict is not in, or did I miss the page where it came in?

I too may be in the make for a new SSP, as my trusty Levinson No. 40 has all but completely died. It started with my centre channel output failing over a year ago, so I switched to phantom centre, which worked fine for the main seat ( mine), and then I lost a few rears, that was still okay because I felt it still sounded great, but now I have lost my right chanell and HDMI won't accept a signal:eek: So its off off to a Harmon/ Levinson repair outlet. I have no clue how much this is going to cost to replace possibly a new SSP board, HDMI board etc...

I will miss this unit, as I have always felt it was the best all-around SSP. Now I have heard better single components, as my CD transport connected to my Larvy DAC sounded much better than using the the DACs in the 40, and when I had a Boulder 1010 two channel preamp, it sounded clearer and cleaner then the 40 in two channel. And I always felt my previous Lexicion using LOGIC 7 had better surround steering. So there is definetely room for improvement ,but I just don't know if anyone has jumped in these deep waters since I have been completely happy for so long. I did recently hear an all Bryston set up; speakers, amps, and SP3, and while it was visceral and could get very loud , I felt it lacked the naturalness of my system. But I also have different speakers and different amp. I plan on taking it for a weekend to see how its sounds in my system. My room is completely treated so the room correction is not my biggest concern.


Thanks Joey
post #756 of 817
Quote:
Originally Posted by joeycalda View Post

Hello,

I spent an hour or so sifting through this thread to get a feel on the latest and greatest, but the verdict is not in, or did I miss the page where it came in?

I too may be in the make for a new SSP, as my trusty Levinson No. 40 has all but completely died. It started with my centre channel output failing over a year ago, so I switched to phantom centre, which worked fine for the main seat ( mine), and then I lost a few rears, that was still okay because I felt it still sounded great, but now I have lost my right chanell and HDMI won't accept a signal:eek: So its off off to a Harmon/ Levinson repair outlet. I have no clue how much this is going to cost to replace possibly a new SSP board, HDMI board etc...

I will miss this unit, as I have always felt it was the best all-around SSP. Now I have heard better single components, as my CD transport connected to my Larvy DAC sounded much better than using the the DACs in the 40, and when I had a Boulder 1010 two channel preamp, it sounded clearer and cleaner then the 40 in two channel. And I always felt my previous Lexicion using LOGIC 7 had better surround steering. So there is definetely room for improvement ,but I just don't know if anyone has jumped in these deep waters since I have been completely happy for so long. I did recently hear an all Bryston set up; speakers, amps, and SP3, and while it was visceral and could get very loud , I felt it lacked the naturalness of my system. But I also have different speakers and different amp. I plan on taking it for a weekend to see how its sounds in my system. My room is completely treated so the room correction is not my biggest concern.


Thanks Joey

While the thread is noble and has generated some interesting discussion, the question posed in unanswerable.

There are too many variables that have different weighting for different people, and there is not one single head to head criteria (like runners in a sprint) that can identify a "winner"

One's ears, budget, room, configuration, functionality and expandability requirements, and content - among many other factors - with impact all our opinions. Some even hate the idea of room correction, through frankly, almost everyone can use some.

I enjoy my MX 151 immensely. I've never heard a Casablanca. Could it sound better? Yes or no, I'd have to have the desire to loan one and see. Would it be "worth" the cost delta? It's a big leap, so it would have to be stunningly better. It's not even about affordability, it's about the value proposition.
post #757 of 817
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by joeycalda View Post

Hello,

I spent an hour or so sifting through this thread to get a feel on the latest and greatest, but the verdict is not in, or did I miss the page where it came in?

I too may be in the make for a new SSP, as my trusty Levinson No. 40 has all but completely died. It started with my centre channel output failing over a year ago, so I switched to phantom centre, which worked fine for the main seat ( mine), and then I lost a few rears, that was still okay because I felt it still sounded great, but now I have lost my right chanell and HDMI won't accept a signal:eek: So its off off to a Harmon/ Levinson repair outlet. I have no clue how much this is going to cost to replace possibly a new SSP board, HDMI board etc...

I will miss this unit, as I have always felt it was the best all-around SSP. Now I have heard better single components, as my CD transport connected to my Larvy DAC sounded much better than using the the DACs in the 40, and when I had a Boulder 1010 two channel preamp, it sounded clearer and cleaner then the 40 in two channel. And I always felt my previous Lexicion using LOGIC 7 had better surround steering. So there is definetely room for improvement ,but I just don't know if anyone has jumped in these deep waters since I have been completely happy for so long. I did recently hear an all Bryston set up; speakers, amps, and SP3, and while it was visceral and could get very loud , I felt it lacked the naturalness of my system. But I also have different speakers and different amp. I plan on taking it for a weekend to see how its sounds in my system. My room is completely treated so the room correction is not my biggest concern.


Thanks Joey

My intention for this thread was not to necessarily produce a winner based on voting but to gather feedback and spark up some interesting discussions. I actually ended up with McIntosh MX151 which wasn't the most popular in terms of votes on this thread but had many of the features I required in addition to superb sound quality. I've tested several other processors along the way and the MX151 was a clear winner for me. Perhaps that will change as new products are announced and discussed on this thread. Like most of us, I always enjoy trying new gear. It's part of the hobby for me.

I hear Meridian will be announcing a new prepro this month. Should be interesting. smile.gif
post #758 of 817
Yes, I understand this is a definitely a hobby, and for some extremists it's a disease.

Some guys like the American Muscle, others super tune Asian cars, some want to be on track, for others it's all about the 1/4 mile, and a few just want to look good on a Sunday drive.tongue.gif
post #759 of 817
Quote:
Originally Posted by thrang View Post

While the thread is noble and has generated some interesting discussion, the question posed in unanswerable.
Yup, whenever I see anyone ask what's "best", I reflexively think "best for what?"
post #760 of 817
Thread Starter 
post #761 of 817
Quote:
Originally Posted by adidino View Post

I hear Meridian will be announcing a new prepro this month. Should be interesting. smile.gif

Already announced:  https://www.meridian-audio.com/en/collections/products/g65-surround-controller/40/

post #762 of 817
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kal Rubinson View Post
 

Already announced:  https://www.meridian-audio.com/en/collections/products/g65-surround-controller/40/

I'm hoping that the DVD and VCR1 inputs in the pics are a photoshop error if this is a brand new processor.  It's a sexy one though. 

post #763 of 817
Quote:
Originally Posted by BrolicBeast View Post

I'm hoping that the DVD and VCR1 inputs in the pics are a photoshop error if this is a brand new processor.  It's a sexy one though. 

post #764 of 817
Quote:
Originally Posted by BrolicBeast View Post
 

I'm hoping that the DVD and VCR1 inputs in the pics are a photoshop error if this is a brand new processor.  It's a sexy one though. 

Possibly.  I expect to see the real thing next week.

post #765 of 817
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kal Rubinson View Post

Already announced:  https://www.meridian-audio.com/en/collections/products/g65-surround-controller/40/
7.2 channels. Bleeding edge stuff there.
post #766 of 817
Quote:
Originally Posted by BrolicBeast View Post

I'm hoping that the DVD and VCR1 inputs in the pics are a photoshop error if this is a brand new processor.
I think those are user programmable names.
post #767 of 817
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by sdurani View Post

7.2 channels. Bleeding edge stuff there.

I think this is part of a new trend for some high end manufacturers lately which is to hit a $6500 sweet spot. Krell, Classe and now Meridian.
post #768 of 817
Quote:
Originally Posted by sdurani View Post
7.2 channels. Bleeding edge stuff there.
Quote:
Originally Posted by adidino View Post
I think this is part of a new trend for some high end manufacturers lately which is to hit a $6500 sweet spot. Krell, Classe and now Meridian.

I think so.  How many buyers actually use more than that?  Perhaps some manufacturer might consider a modular approach with all the brains/control in one box with 7.2 channels but outfitted with a connector permitting the user to add boxes supporting additional output channels in blocks of 4-6.  Maybe we'll see something like this when object-based systems emerge.

post #769 of 817
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kal Rubinson View Post

How many buyers actually use more than that?
Guess I'm missing the old Meridian from the mid-1990s that was inventing their own surround processing and room correction ahead of most manufacturers. A decade later they're about to release a 7.1 pre-pro limited to 5.1 input.
post #770 of 817
Wine can be a bridge to good relations and making amends. And like home theater, it makes for good living. Steve Kale seems like a nice guy and it looks like he has good taste in wine (which likely confirms my impressions of him). I'm looking forward to tasting one from his recommended bottles.

I'm not easy on Theta, but they give a lot of ammo. That said, I know the product is a good product but it is not for me or my type of system. However, I would never say never to a future product that fits my needs. I've even called out manufacturers on equipment I've owned when I experienced issues (being an equal opportunity offender). The JVC incident where Alan and AVS got involved with me is a classic example of consumer pressure to return a $10K projector, admit a marketing error on a projector over a year old and getting a full refund in cash. Though Theta hasn't harmed anybody, their late HDMI and promises on various processors from the CB to the Valis to the Casanova make for good banter. And Big Brother, my ego is glad to hear my comments are extremely influential to others or perspective buyers... but reality tells me otherwise. I'm one guy with opinions... just like the other 100,000 members here.

Steve seems intent on educating me on Pinots with a nice bottle. I may have to return a bottle of my liking as a favor and in the interest of being a good sport as well. But, Steve I know you are offering to send but, if you really feel things were not square, I'm not going to brow beat you on it and we can forget it.

Some guys get all crazy about their gear. Heck, Bulldogger and Steve B have called my equipment 'crap' for years but I could care less. In the dealer world, he's a gem. In fact, I laugh a lot at their comments. I hold no animosity towards either of them and I'm sure off the Theta thread, they are genuinely nice people. And Theta guys are lucky to have Craig managing their expectations (and wallets). When I get into my theater, it is about the movie and my enjoyment of my system - not other's impression of what I own. I leave the comments on this 'playground' (as BB rightly so described this place). It is a playground of very expensive toys and learning and that's good. I think all equipment and manufacturer claims should be open for a bit of cynicism and no manufacturer should be protected.

Some of us have been here for over a decade and this place is much more than a place for information. Heck, if I wanted pure information without the relationships and banter here, I'd google everything I need to know. But that is part of this place and that's why enjoy it here.
post #771 of 817
Quote:
Originally Posted by sdurani View Post


Guess I'm missing the old Meridian from the mid-1990s that was inventing their own surround processing and room correction ahead of most manufacturers. A decade later they're about to release a 7.1 pre-pro limited to 5.1 input.

Yup.  Enough for me. I have no recordings with more than 5.1 channels.

post #772 of 817
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kal Rubinson View Post

Yup.  Enough for me. I have no recordings with more than 5.1 channels.

You don't buy many blu-rays then.

Not supporting discrete 7.1 input in 2013 is quite dopey.
post #773 of 817
Quote:
Originally Posted by thrang View Post


You don't buy many blu-rays then.

Not supporting discrete 7.1 input in 2013 is quite dopey.

I am not arguing in favor of Meridian's decision on this but speculating about what their reason might have been.  

 

As for me, movies are not important.  The only BDs I buy are music discs and very few of these are more than 5.1.  OTOH, my Meridian 861v8 will accept 7.1 input, if I needed it.  

post #774 of 817
That company was poised to do some great things with surroundsound processing in the mid 90s and decided instead to develop the MLP system and go into the recurring revenue business...
post #775 of 817
I think Meridian it's not that interesting at all. They mght have quality, but i never see them in the race wit the top brands like Datasat or ADA...
post #776 of 817
Quote:
Originally Posted by RefTheater View Post

They mght have quality, but i never see them in the race wit the top brands like Datasat or ADA...

I don't think they see that, either.

post #777 of 817
Quote:
Originally Posted by wse View Post

Is it any good?  I still believe the best processor is no processor!

Oppo BDP-105 straight to the amps smile.gif

I am curious if you noticed a difference doing this and how are you controlling volume?
post #778 of 817
The oppo has a digital volume control.
post #779 of 817
Does any high end processor have a dac as good as sabre32 reference? Theta extreme dacs, no matter how extreme... Are they updated?

I Never had a chance to try theta extremes for stereo reproduction.

I do enjoy 11.2 matrixing with audyssey, do any of the mega-super processors do that?
Edited by blazar - 1/4/14 at 8:28pm
post #780 of 817
Quote:
Originally Posted by blazar View Post

Does any high end processor have a dac as good as sabre32 reference? Theta extreme dacs, no matter how extreme... Are they updated?

I Never had a chance to try theta extremes for stereo reproduction.

I do enjoy 11.2 matrixing with audyssey, do any of the mega-super processors do that?
Yamahas new prepro has ESS dacs but so much more to Sound quality than what DAC chips are used
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