Originally Posted by dkersten
But really, to most AVS'ers (even the ones with fairly nice dedicated theaters), is that 10% difference even noticeable?
I don't know but 99% of Trinnov clients have never heard of AVS.
I can't imagine that if tuning for one seat, that most people would notice the difference between the Emotiva and the Trinnov in a theater where the speakers, speaker placement, and acoustic treatments are all equal.
Given those specific constants, I agree.
Now, when talking uniformity from seat to seat in a theater with multiple side surround pairs and multiple Atmos pairs, sure, I can see even an "above average" listener noticing the differences between the Emotiva and the Trinnov.
It isn't about seat to seat variation. Measured and calibrated properly, a Dirac based system can get you close.
But is 10% better seat to seat uniformity worth that much?
While the seat position weighting in the Trinnov is both unique and helpful, that, in my opinion, is NOT its main strength (but most certainly one of them). And that's because 98+++++++++% of the population wouldn't know nor hear the difference between the MLP and the seat next to it since 98++++++++% of the people have never heard ANY high end home theater. Also the Trinnov is not for the 2% of the people who have home theaters. It is for 5% of the 2% who, regardless of the price, want the best, and it clearly is.
For example, the Trinnov does a better job than any other processor on time aligning the speakers - including the Datasat. When checking using an impulse response after the Trinnov Optimizer runs, the time alignment of every speaker (subs excluded) is absolutely PERFECT. ZERO variance. And, among other things, that improves the sense of immersion and cohesiveness in the room.
Now, is all of that worth an extra $20,000? Is that a 10% improvement? Each listener will have their own opinion. As I have stated ad nauseum, I ONLY went from the Datasat to the Trinnov to try higher speaker count. Is going from 7.x.4 to 9.x.6 in a fully treated room worth the cost of new speakers and amps and cables, and the Trinnov? Not for me. In a properly treated and normal sized room, with proper speaker placement and proper calibration, 7.x.4 is easily the sweet spot. Is 9.x.6 better? Yes but ONLY for those so very, very, very, very, very very, few movies that actually take advantage of the higher speaker count and even then, not that much.
In my opinion, when I went from a Denon Audyssey system to an Emotiva Dirac system, the difference was significant, so while I believe DSP has limitations, anything Marantz or Denon can bring to the table has huge room for improvement. I just think that what Dirac can do in terms of processing and room correction is close enough to the limit of what can be done with a processor that anything more would be an incremental improvement at best.
If I might paraphrase Bill Clinton: "It all depends on the definition of 'close enough' ". BUT, I would very strongly agree with you on the comparison of Audyssey vs Dirac. As good as Audyssey was when it was the only game in town, Dirac smokes it. Not even close. BUT, 90% of the Universe would'n hear the difference and/or not care!!
And with Trinnov, that is one expensive incremental change.
Yes, but again, what is incremental to one is huge to someone else.
For me, a $20k bump would be a ~40% increase in budget, and it better bring at least a 20% increase in sound quality all around for that kind of cheddar.
That not how high end audio works and never has and never will. At these levels, we are way past linear increases. You pay a LOT more to get a tiny bit more. Let's go back to your Denon vs Emotiva example. I can buy a Denon 7.2 receiver for $800 or I can buy the Emotiva for $2500. THREE TIMES THE price. Is it 3 times better?? 99.999% of the Universe would say NO!!
So ..... "It all depends"
As for Tim's specific situation (fairly young family, small children to be raised, educated and married?), a 24 count Emotiva and a reasonably priced projector are smart choices, and therefore the "best choices" for him at this time.