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Any pure surround decoders available? (no preamp etc)

post #1 of 52
Thread Starter 
Hi.

I am trying to find a processor that will simply decode the movie signal and hand it over to my analog multichannel Sony TA-P9000ES for preamplification. .... Having it go through two preamps (the processor and and the sony would only contaminate the signal)

Can anyone please tell me if such a device is available?

Thanks!
post #2 of 52
Quote:
Originally Posted by MoodyDragon View Post

Hi.

I am trying to find a processor that will simply decode the movie signal and hand it over to my analog multichannel Sony TA-P9000ES for preamplification. .... Having it go through two preamps (the processor and and the sony would only contaminate the signal)

Can anyone please tell me if such a device is available?

Thanks!

In order to decode it would have to go through another processing device, yes? So, I'm of the opinion that any way you slice it, the signal will be "contaminated" as you put it.

I know there were outboard decoders in the early days of home theater. Sony, Technics, Parasound, and probably others built them. Whether or not there are still outboard decoders being produced, I can't answer for sure.

I'd think another alternative would be to get a player with the DD/DTS decoding built in and feed the analog multichannel from that into the Sony.
post #3 of 52
Panasoninc made one of those devices a few years back.

Here's a link to it:

http://dvd.ign.com/articles/038/038313p1.html

There's one for sale on ebay right now.
post #4 of 52
I have a Midiland Dolby-DTS sound decoder I used w/my DVD player & cable box. It produced great sound. My problem is that the powered subwoofer I connected it to failed.

The subwoofer was connected to the decoder w/several mini plug connections(left, right, center,etc.) and the satellite speakers were fed with speaker wire from the subwoofer.

My problem is I can't find a replacement for the powered subwoofer with the above described connections. Would anyone know where I could find a subwoofer with this type of setup so I can use my Midiland decoder?
post #5 of 52
Quote:
Originally Posted by tonygeno View Post

Panasoninc made one of those devices a few years back.
Here's a link to it:
http://dvd.ign.com/articles/038/038313p1.html
There's one for sale on ebay right now.

Yup. It is still the only effective alternative and it works just fine with my Sony TA-P9000ES!!
post #6 of 52
I would look into what production facilities use in their sound systems. It will probably you cost you and arm and leg though.

Edit:
Found the Dolby DP564. Only $4600 You'll need another box for DTS!
http://www.dolby.com/professional/pr.../dp564_01.html
post #7 of 52
Are you looking for no volume control? I can't think of any like that with DD but there is a DTS decoder without volume. With volume there are some dd and dts.
post #8 of 52
Quote:
Originally Posted by MKtheater View Post

Are you looking for no volume control? I can't think of any like that with DD but there is a DTS decoder without volume. With volume there are some dd and dts.

The subwoofer I had had volume, which I just left at a certain level. The Midiland decoder also has volume, which I used to raise or lower my devices as desired. I use another decoder now, but it only decodes Dolby 5.1 & A-3. My Midiland decodes Dolby & DTS. I think I have found a replacement subwoofer at Aspire. They show the rear connections to the unit on their web site, and it matches up w/my Midiland decoder. That's always the problem hunting for replacement devices...i.e., what are the rear connections?
post #9 of 52
Quote:
Originally Posted by MoodyDragon View Post

Hi.

I am trying to find a processor that will simply decode the movie signal and hand it over to my analog multichannel Sony TA-P9000ES for preamplification. .... Having it go through two preamps (the processor and and the sony would only contaminate the signal)

Can anyone please tell me if such a device is available?

Thanks!

I'm running the L/R channel preamp outputs from my Rotel HT receiver, into the 5.1 bypass input of my Sony TAP 9000ES. Although I can't really A/B this set up against a Rotel-straight-to-power amp scenario, it doesn't appear to be effecting the signal.

The TAP bypass inputs will pass though a signal to it's pre-outputs, even if the power switch is turned off. Others like Kal may know more about this, but it appears to me that the bypass signal goes though nothing more than a relay, which is normally closed, unless another input is selected. In other words, you are just adding more connection/cables to you signal chain, but not more electronics?

OTOH, I do get a cleaner signal from a source, if directly sent to the TAP, instead of the above setup, so I can see where you are going with this.
post #10 of 52
Quote:
Originally Posted by MoodyDragon View Post

Hi.

I am trying to find a processor that will simply decode the movie signal and hand it over to my analog multichannel Sony TA-P9000ES for preamplification. .... Having it go through two preamps (the processor and and the sony would only contaminate the signal)

Can anyone please tell me if such a device is available?

Thanks!

I have a Midiland ADS 4000 http://www.midiland.com/proddetail.a...r=60&category= It decodes Dolby & DTS. A great decoder at a good price. You may have to hunt to find a retailer, they have some retailers listed at the Midiland web site. This unit will send the sound to your Sony in anolog or digital.
post #11 of 52
Most decoders will need a preamp. There is a dts decoder from ada and a dts, dd decoder from proceed. They both are pure decoders and won't work without preamps. Hope this helps
post #12 of 52
Some DVD players have built-in decoders and multichannel analog outputs that will work for you with DVDs (though not all have bass management), but if you want decoding from other sources, such as satellite cable HDTV, the only options I see are special units like the Panasonic (whcih I think was actually a Technics? brand) unit mentioned or a decent AVR/AVP. Either way, whatever benefits you think you would gain (and that is questionable IMO) from an outdated AC3 decoder will be more than offset by the benefits of better DACs and processing (DPLIIx, for example) in a modern AVR/AVP.
post #13 of 52
Quote:
Originally Posted by jkhome View Post

The TAP bypass inputs will pass though a signal to it's pre-outputs, even if the power switch is turned off. Others like Kal may know more about this, but it appears to me that the bypass signal goes though nothing more than a relay, which is normally closed, unless another input is selected. In other words, you are just adding more connection/cables to you signal chain, but not more electronics?

Confirmed.
post #14 of 52
There are very few decoders that also decode DTS in addition to Dolby. I have a Midiland ADS 4000 that automatically distinguishes either from digital inputs. So w/out a maze of wires, I connect an optical to my STB & an RF to my DVD player and it detects the signal it receives. For $200 its a great decoder. Many of the decoders I see referred to on this site are $2-$3000. I'm sure they are great units, but you only decode what your receiving from your DVD & cable. I'm not sure the extra expense gives you that much more quality, especially from those sources.
post #15 of 52
Quote:
Originally Posted by NR68 View Post

There are very few decoders that also decode DTS in addition to Dolby. I have a Midiland ADS 4000 that automatically distinguishes either from digital inputs. So w/out a maze of wires, I connect an optical to my STB & an RF to my DVD player and it detects the signal it receives. For $200 its a great decoder. Many of the decoders I see referred to on this site are $2-$3000. I'm sure they are great units, but you only decode what your receiving from your DVD & cable. I'm not sure the extra expense gives you that much more quality, especially from those sources.

Great. There are many cheaper ones that never appear on the consciousness of us high-end guys but, afaik, the Technics unit usually goes for much less than$200 on eBay.
post #16 of 52
if by pure decoding you're happy with the analog out w/o amplication or volume control, then a HTPC with say M-audio 5.1 (or more expensive option like RME) would serve
post #17 of 52
I'm using a pro one from ed frias in a 2 channel system. 2 channel signal comes in to passive decoder, decoder routes to keep front speakers unadulterated, adds center channel to bring focus to center stage, and seperate the rear stage of stereo and place it in the rear of the room. This creates a dynamic front stage(3 speakers full volumn) and 2 rear speakers contain mono signals. This equates to 2 channel system surround sound set up. The decoder contains 5 indiv volumn controls fo each speaker. I'm not a salesman just a happy customer.

John
post #18 of 52
Quote:
Originally Posted by Daddy Freddy View Post

I'm using a pro one from ed frias in a 2 channel system. 2 channel signal comes in to passive decoder, decoder routes to keep front speakers unadulterated, adds center channel to bring focus to center stage, and seperate the rear stage of stereo and place it in the rear of the room. This creates a dynamic front stage(3 speakers full volumn) and 2 rear speakers contain mono signals. This equates to 2 channel system surround sound set up. The decoder contains 5 indiv volumn controls fo each speaker. I'm not a salesman just a happy customer.
John

Sounds like it's just a matrix decoder. Does it do DD and/or DTS?
post #19 of 52
the decoder does not alter the pure stereo signal. The unit sends the pure stereo signal to the 2 front speakers and the center. All 3 speakers are now full range/power and make up the front stage. The unit then seperates the rear stage of stereo signal and sends it in mono format to the rear speakers such as instruments etc... this is not a dolby digi or DTS unit.
post #20 of 52
Quote:
Originally Posted by Daddy Freddy View Post

decoder routes to keep front speakers unadulterated, adds center channel to bring focus to center stage

But that would mean that sounds intended to image in the centre of the front soundstage (e.g., lead singer's vocals) would be heard from all three front speakers. Wouldn't hearing those sounds as triple-mono confuse/muddy the centre imaging rather than focus it to the middle of the soundstage?

Sanjay
post #21 of 52
Quote:
Originally Posted by sdurani View Post

But that would mean that sounds intended to image in the centre of the front soundstage (e.g., lead singer's vocals) would be heard from all three front speakers. Wouldn't hearing those sounds as triple-mono confuse/muddy the centre imaging rather than focus it to the middle of the soundstage? Sanjay

Sure it would. But, this is not a decoder but something that extracts signals and synthesizes a surround effect. Of course, that's not to say that one cannot derive lots of pleasure from such.
post #22 of 52
Is there something like this but with digital outputs for digital amps?
post #23 of 52
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mikenificent1 View Post

Is there something like this but with digital outputs for digital amps?

You have to have a decoder for digital 5.1 Dolby & DTS The decoders have the inputs & outputs. My output from the decoder is a G-9 cable ( to subwoofer) input is optical and/or coaxial from DVD player & STB. Another decoder I have has the optical & coaxial inputs, and the output is speaker wire to the various speakers.
post #24 of 52
Kal
I have a question regarding rear-center speakers. I'm aware DolbyEx has added a 6th channel for a rear center-speaker(as has DTS). I assume you cannot get the 6th channel w/out a 6.1 decoder? Also if you were to add a rear-center speaker to a 5.1 system, do you think it would enhance the sound. I've seen some setups w/the rear surround speakers are each connected to the rear-center(rear-center having 4 wire terminals). Would this type of setup be worth while in your opinion?
post #25 of 52
Two answers:
You can derive the 6th channel by using a DPL processor to derive the rear center from the two surround channels.

I see no need for a rear center for logical, esthetic and WAF reasons.
post #26 of 52
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kal Rubinson View Post


I see no need for a rear center for logical, esthetic and WAF reasons.

How about the fact that most people in the room are going to hear the dominant channel closest to them while the other channel is almost inaudible due to the Haas effect (during parts of the sound track that have identical information in both channels, i.e. ambience or a sound source that is suppose to come from straight behind you) Having the rear centers ensures the proper soundstage perspective the same way a front center channel does!

Mike
post #27 of 52
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mikenificent1 View Post

How about the fact that most people in the room are going to hear the dominant channel closest to them while the other channel is almost inaudible due to the Haas effect (during parts of the sound track that have identical information in both channels, i.e. ambience or a sound source that is suppose to come from straight behind you) Having the rear centers ensures the proper soundstage perspective the same way a front center channel does!
Mike

You are perfectly right but not for me. I listen primarily to music where, afaik, there are no recordings (yet) with a discrete rear center channel nor do I bother much with recordings that have much more than ambiance in the rear channels. HT is a decidedly secondary application in my systems. So, my (2nd) answer was personal.

The first answer was pretty straight-forward,
post #28 of 52
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kal Rubinson View Post

I listen primarily to music where, afaik, there are no recordings (yet) with a discrete rear center channel nor do I bother much with recordings that have much more than ambiance in the rear channels. HT is a decidedly secondary application in my systems. So, my (2nd) answer was personal.

Since I believe you reviewed the 861, how does 2 channel recording processed in Trifield or other Meridian algorithms compare to discreet multichannel recordings?

Thanks
Mike
post #29 of 52
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mikenificent1 View Post

Since I believe you reviewed the 861, how does 2 channel recording processed in Trifield or other Meridian algorithms compare to discreet multichannel recordings?Mike

Not as good but very nice, nonetheless. The Meridian TriField is the only such transform that I could leave as the default for stereo inputs, once set up for my room. All others (I have not used Logic7) required tweaking for each source and I would not want to bother. Still, good as it is, there's a specificity and stability to discrete MCH that's just better.
post #30 of 52
Have ordered a Denon 7.1 channel receiver. So what's the difference between an active & passive subwoofer, and can they both be connected w/ an RF connection?
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