Originally Posted by Shaun B
Originally Posted by mcnarus
It might be lower; it might be higher. Some amps have higher distortion than other amps. It's quite possible for a 50w amp to have lower distortion through its operating range than a 100w amp. If you look at enough amp measurements, I'm sure you'll find examples.
The reason they'll sound equally good is that both amps would be operating cleanly, and that means that both are producing only inaudible levels of distortion. If neither amp produces audible distortion, both will sound the same.
So you are saying a receiver can sound just as musical as a dedicated two channel amplifier if both are not running into audible distortion? So a Mcintosh or Krell or Mark Levinson are just the same as a Sony, or Pioneer, or Onkyo?
They are not just the same but they are enough the same that they won't sound different. Human hearing is not perfect, and many small differences will always escape its notice for all people. I make this point to head off the next claim.
I believe products are manufactured to achieve a price/performance point.
That is true.
However, the cost of providing high performance has fallen dramatically over the past 50 or more years.
I can show you technical test after technical test where an AVR equals or beats the technical performance of high priced separates. It is all about improved general price performance, economies of scale and diminishing returns.
An AVR is a complex multifunctional device that does many things well without doing anything exceptionally well.
In 2013 there is no need for exceptional technical performance to obtain exeptional audible performance. In 1955 a power amplifier with less than 1% THD 20-20 KHz at 20 watts was exceptional, if it existed at all. Today that's worse performance than provided by a $200 HTIB.
To achieve maximum technological benefits costs have to be cut somewhere.
First off, we don't need maximum technological benefits. This would only be true if human hearing was ideal and perfect, which it is not. Secondly, the electronics in a good audio system do not set the technological limits. The speakers and the room set those limits.
It may be in finish or function or power.
You seem to be willing to complete disregard the concepts of diminishing returns and economies of scale. IMO, not the best idea!
The technology chips cost are a dime a dozen, especially in the quantities they buy them.
Well, a dollar or a few dollars.
What pushes up costs are licensing,
It has been documented elsewhere that the licensing costs for a surround processor are the same whether the processor costs $200 or $20,000. There are also economies of scale there, that favor volume producers.
new product implementation and beefy power supplies with suitable output.
Development costs for an AVR are about the same whether the price point is $500 or $15,000. The $500 processor sells thousands of units and the $15,000 process sells just a few. The development costs are divided by the size of the production run. the cost per unit for development of the $500 processor is far less.
You can guess where the costs are cut to achieve a price point of a product.
I don't have to guess - the arithmetic presented above are irrefutable and demolish your argument.
A power amp is just that. A one function device that is designed to achieve a desired outcome. Once again at a price point. It achieves its so called spec being a dedicated device.
I think that is has been shown that by ignoring economies of scale and the law of diminishing returns, your argument has become highly incomplete and grotesquely flawed.
An AVR in my opinion is a less discerning device.
Yup, your opinion, and it has been shown that your opinion is not well-grounded in well-known facts.
It is multifunctional and it uses multiple loudspeakers with a subwoofer to achieve "spectrum" balance.
On the one hand we have a 7.1 AVR and on the other hand we have a 7 channel power amplifier that is made by say, MacIntosh. If there are multichannel cooties as you seem to suggest, how does the MacIntosh avoid them?
On the one hand we have a 7.1 AVR and on the other hand we have a 7 channel surround processor that is made by say, MacIntosh. If there are multichannel cooties as you seem to suggest, how does the MacIntosh avoid them?
It is not optimised for pure stereo listening,
That would be an unsupported assertion at this point. This seems to be a repeated flaw in your presentation - you seem to keep saying it has to be worse, facts be damned, just because I say so. Can we see your membership card in the association of ruling dieties? ;-)
that's why they have bass management and use a subwoofer to achieve that.
Your challenge for the day is to find a so-called full range speaker that reproduces deep bass as well as say a $2,000 subwoofer from one of the top supplies, say Rhythmic, SVS or Hsu. I'll save you some time, we've already checked out several $20,000+ a pair high end speakers and they have come up short. Beyond that we have plenty of technical evidence that there are sound quality advantages from being able to place the subwoofer ideally and no exactly co-located with the L&R mains. You seem to be unaware of this, and are probably unknowingly discrediting yourself in the eyes of many readers.
It is tailored to sound field processing and multiple loudspeakers at the same time.
It is well known that if you take a good AVR and configure it for 2.0, 2.1, 3.0 or 3.1 speakers it sounds great.
So I don't know how people can say that receivers can sound the same as any other amp if they are not distorting.
It appears that there is a great deal of knowledge about audio that would alleviate your situation were you to educate yourself about them. Simple things like the superiority of dedicated subwoofers over so-called full range speakers.