Originally Posted by SpursFan
I've listened to a few Anthem amps and they sound fantastic. The only thing pulling me away from Anthem is Dirac, I keep reading about how great it is. I don't think you can go wrong with any AVR I'm looking at but I sure wish you could demo them side by side!
FWIW, many people regard Dirac and ARC (Anthem Room Correction) to be on the same tier, with Dirac having maybe a slight edge. I know that personally going to ARC from Audyssey was a huge improvement, especially with subwoofer integration. I have used Pioneer's MCACC before too, and really liked certain things about it (timing).
To most people who have extensive experience with room correction, the list has three tiers.
MCACC, YPAO, and AUDYSSEY are on the lower tier, DIRAC and ARC on the middle tier, and TRINNOV the gold standard, now also implemented in JBL synthesis solutions...it's the cats meow, but be prepared to pony up for the gear and process.
It's important, IMO, to keep a few things in mind when considering the above statement. Firstly, most users only have experience with one or two systems. Secondly, if you hang out on boards like this you'll see a about a bazillion Audyssey threads and posts, even though that system is one of the worst ones out there. That really has more to do with the prevalence of Denon/Marantz receivers and processors than anything else, and owners love to feel good about their decision.
My point on broad strokes is, ARC is impressive, and the gear it is in is impressive as well. Dirac is also impressive, but is implemented across a lot more gear than ARC, so you can run into some turds with the gear because you were primarily chasing the correction software. Choose wisely, or buy an Anthem anything....or heck, man up and buy a Trinnov Altitude.