Sound United Enters Agreement to Acquire Onkyo Home Audio - Page 4 - AVS Forum | Home Theater Discussions And Reviews
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post #91 of 149 Old 05-17-2019, 04:09 PM
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Originally Posted by blazar View Post
there wasn't heavy differentiation between most of these products. some cosmetics perhaps.
I could personally see every single one of those brands under the parent company becoming a single unified line of products and nobody would bat an eye.
...
With competitors like sonos and apple, they need to get their whole house audio stuff under one strong competitive brand and feature set or face extinction.
There are currently WAY too many products and price points under all of those brands, just confusing and not necessary. I say simplify and get the consumer better for cheaper.
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Originally Posted by dunnersfella View Post
I will put it this way...
The market is NOT in 5.1 systems and theatre rooms, it's in multi-room systems that are easy to use.
AVR's are too complicated for the vast majority of users...
The world has changed...lets face it, anyone reading this forum is NOT a typical consumer. We are a niche audience. We like to think of Pioneer and Onkyo And Denon/Marantz and Yamaha as mainstream and call NAD or Rotel or Arcam niche products but in the big picture they are all niche brands and products. We are enthusiasts and for a lot of us connecting it all and setting it up to be just the way we want it is half the fun. But for the average consumer?? nope...not worth the time or effort.

Case in point...To watch TV all my wife has to do is to turn on the TV with the remote she was using before I upgraded the AVR (from Onkyo to Denon) and she STILL goes to the Standard Def version of the cable channel over the HD version (like she did before). Even if she notices the difference when I change to the HD channel for her it is not important enough of a difference for her to take the time to do it herself.

90% of the time if she's watching Netflix its on her Ipad. If she's listening to music its on her Iphone with earbuds. The point is that even with a universal remote the AVR is just too complicated for her and she doesn't see the value in taking the time to learn to use it. It's not easy to use so she doesn't use it.

The one good thing that could come from this acquisition would be a simplification of the products lines and MAYBE a nod towards making it all easier to use. This presents an opportunity for companies like NAD to differentiate and stand out in a less crowded marketplace if they can find a way to remain competitive on price.
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post #92 of 149 Old 05-17-2019, 07:24 PM
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Originally Posted by smdelaney View Post
The world has changed...lets face it, anyone reading this forum is NOT a typical consumer. We are a niche audience. We like to think of Pioneer and Onkyo And Denon/Marantz and Yamaha as mainstream and call NAD or Rotel or Arcam niche products but in the big picture they are all niche brands and products. We are enthusiasts and for a lot of us connecting it all and setting it up to be just the way we want it is half the fun. But for the average consumer?? nope...not worth the time or effort.
The average consumer might have a soundbar, and the segment that would have an AVR is going to Best Buy and picking up some $500 system with Polk Audio monitor speakers and a low-end Denon (read: Inkel with a Denon nameplate) AVR, like this one:
https://www.bestbuy.com/site/polk-au...?skuId=6336504

The top rated system on their website is here:
https://www.bestbuy.com/site/yamaha-...?skuId=5787200

If most of the competition on the consumer world is on the <$999 end, in the mass market you might just wind up with Sound United (rep'ing Denon except for the lowest end which might still get that Onkyo nameplate), Yamaha and Bose (with Sony in its isolated ecosphere). This may sound heretical, but maybe it's a good thing that the "mid-range" up to the D&M flagship is smaller, because the reduced competition might push companies to release processors less often, but with firmware updates over the Internet to have a longer life cycle and release new units when there's something worth upgrading the chassis for (i.e. a more powerful DSP chip for more 13 to 16 channel libraries, DTS:X Pro, etc.). With the shakeout in the industry, they need to break the yearly "refresh the hunk of metal" approach they take. If anything, that's where a subscription model for firmware updates might be a good approach.

Otherwise it actually makes more sense for the innovation to happen in the $3000 to $6000 (i.e. below the customer integrator) level, with direct to consumer marketing like Monoprice, Emotiva, and ATI do for some of their products. And for those people that really care and want the best with customer service and regular product updates....the jury is still out about Storm Audio, but Trinnov has a successful model with a PC-based architecture, software updates, and IMO (as an owner) customer service (both remote over VNC and through email/live support) and personal relationships with owners from their sales/support team that are right at the top for this industry. But that gets into the price of a decent used car just to get into their entry level, which is the Altitude 16. And then all the friends it wants .

Quote:
Case in point...To watch TV all my wife has to do is to turn on the TV with the remote she was using before I upgraded the AVR (from Onkyo to Denon) and she STILL goes to the Standard Def version of the cable channel over the HD version (like she did before). Even if she notices the difference when I change to the HD channel for her it is not important enough of a difference for her to take the time to do it herself.

90% of the time if she's watching Netflix its on her Ipad. If she's listening to music its on her Iphone with earbuds. The point is that even with a universal remote the AVR is just too complicated for her and she doesn't see the value in taking the time to learn to use it. It's not easy to use so she doesn't use it.
Tell me about it. Even with a home theatre, 3D audio system and PJ (see signature or profile for details), the only one that usually watches movies with me is my five year old, who grew up with A/V, has an iPad, and loves technology, not to mention explosions and subs . My wife rarely watches movies with us, and she's far more likely to watch Netflix on her phone because our HT is "too complex" or she just likes to watch stuff on mobile because it's portable. OTOH my 21 year old is a straight to Roku TV and iPhone kind of guy....

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The one good thing that could come from this acquisition would be a simplification of the products lines and MAYBE a nod towards making it all easier to use. This presents an opportunity for companies like NAD to differentiate and stand out in a less crowded marketplace if they can find a way to remain competitive on price.
Exactly my point above. If it's possible, consumer A/V is both undervalued and overvalued. LOL.
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post #93 of 149 Old 05-17-2019, 09:41 PM
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Originally Posted by DS-21 View Post
Your reply is mostly out of the scope of my text you quoted. I never claimed that the corporate overlords for those companies were related, I wrote that the AVR/pre-pro hardware was basically the same.

I admittedly may be wrong about NAD, but I have my suspicions about the 758. However, it is quite clear that the hardware of the Anthem MRXs/AVM60 and the Harmsung/AudioContol AVRs/pre-pros are riffs on the same OEM platform.
I don't believe that is correct. I don't see any similarities between Anthem and Arcam/Lexicon. AudioControl has licensed Arcam hardware in the past and may well still be doing it, but they're a small niche player.

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post #94 of 149 Old 05-18-2019, 10:39 AM
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I don't believe that is correct. I don't see any similarities between Anthem and Arcam/Lexicon.
Really? Look harder.

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post #95 of 149 Old 05-18-2019, 02:49 PM
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Lexicon uses Arcam as the base platform.

I did not think Anthem and Arcam shared anything explicitly.

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post #96 of 149 Old 05-18-2019, 03:18 PM
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Originally Posted by DonH50 View Post
Lexicon uses Arcam as the base platform.

I did not think Anthem and Arcam shared anything explicitly.
That depends on what "shared" means.

If to you it means "worked together" then probably not.

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post #97 of 149 Old 05-18-2019, 03:36 PM
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Originally Posted by DS-21 View Post
That depends on what "shared" means.

If to you it means "worked together" then probably not.
Your implication was Arcam was a rebadged Anthem or vice-versa. I did not think that was the case. But it is not something I have looked into, just a vague memory of seeing reviews with inside pix and did not think they looked similar. Lexicon and Arcam, OTOH, only change the nameplate (and not even the OSD last I looked); Lexicon adds their own house curve (but not the advanced surround mode they are/were famous for).

I imagine many AVRs share components (parts inside) these days. Only so many suppliers...
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post #98 of 149 Old 05-18-2019, 04:55 PM
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Originally Posted by DonH50 View Post
Your implication was Arcam was a rebadged Anthem or vice-versa. I did not think that was the case. But it is not something I have looked into, just a vague memory of seeing reviews with inside pix and did not think they looked similar. Lexicon and Arcam, OTOH, only change the nameplate (and not even the OSD last I looked); Lexicon adds their own house curve (but not the advanced surround mode they are/were famous for).

I imagine many AVRs share components (parts inside) these days. Only so many suppliers...

Audiocontrol is also a rebadged Arcam, fwiw.

But yes, i’m not sure the similarities of the anthem but it looks and behaves completely differently than the arcam/lexicon/audiocontrol units
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post #99 of 149 Old 05-18-2019, 05:13 PM
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Originally Posted by DS-21 View Post
That depends on what "shared" means.

If to you it means "worked together" then probably not.
Arcam/Lexicon/Audiocontrol and Anthem have different power supplies, DSPs, DACs, transistors, amplifier section configuration, HDMI board, onboard memory, fans, firmware and OSD, wifi and ethernet boards, 2" of depth, a lot of differences on the rear panel, and a general difference in the layout of virtually every board.

Other than that, yea, they're basically the same thing.

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post #100 of 149 Old 05-19-2019, 05:18 PM
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I miss the days of Pioneer Elite with the Rosewood side panels. They were amazing.


I was never a fan of Onkyo, Denon or Audyssey. So as far as I'm concerned, those can go away.
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post #101 of 149 Old 05-19-2019, 08:03 PM
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I miss the days of Pioneer Elite with the Rosewood side panels. They were amazing.


I was never a fan of Onkyo, Denon or Audyssey. So as far as I'm concerned, those can go away.
Pioneer was about to get buried in a rosewood coffin along with Gibson so I highly doubt that wish will come true. I liked my older Pioneer Elite gear. Still have my LD player in a closet somewhere.

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post #102 of 149 Old 05-20-2019, 12:14 AM
 
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I hope this deal does not materialize, dont want to see O&P bought, O&P should retain their independent identity.

Pioneer is not different from onkyo now, it's the same company after onkyo bought their AV business, so their receivers sound kind of similar, the days of pioneer elite are over.
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post #103 of 149 Old 05-20-2019, 02:53 PM
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My pick...

The thing is though, AVR sales are declining, so what's the point of owning 5 x AVR brands?
That's the point. With AVR sales in steep decline in favor of these ridiculous mono smart spy speakers, you want to own as much as you can so that you can maintain a certain level of sales. If you can use a lot of common parts across brands, you can keep costs in check. One of the things that's happened in the photography industry is that sales have declined massively due to smartphones. While we haven't seen acquisitions like this, prices have gone way up because cost of parts has gone up due to smaller quantities. So much so that everything became overpriced, cost of entry became too high, sales sunk and right now, almost all the photo manufacturers have recently put just about everything on sale in order to try and generate some sales and get rid of inventory. So by owning "everything" you can keep costs down.

I suspect that we'll see a lot of look-alike receivers with different brand plates on them -or- we'll see stratification: different brands will be for different levels of quality. There's lots of ways this can go, but I'd be surprised to see ALL of these brands survive just for AVR's and pre-pros. Frankly, I'm surprised that both Denon and Marantz have both survived, although that's only two brands. Now that they'll have Onkyo, Integra, Pioneer and Pioneer Elite, do all six of those lines survive in the long run? Doubtful IMO unless they can find a way to revive the market. One way would be to release smart devices that also connect to a full-fledged receiver or pre-pro. Personally, I think the industry has done a lousy job pushing home theater. About the only thing that's sold well are sound-bars.
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post #104 of 149 Old 05-20-2019, 03:15 PM
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That's the point. With AVR sales in steep decline in favor of these ridiculous mono smart spy speakers, you want to own as much as you can so that you can maintain a certain level of sales. If you can use a lot of common parts across brands, you can keep costs in check. One of the things that's happened in the photography industry is that sales have declined massively due to smartphones. While we haven't seen acquisitions like this, prices have gone way up because cost of parts has gone up due to smaller quantities. So much so that everything became overpriced, cost of entry became too high, sales sunk and right now, almost all the photo manufacturers have recently put just about everything on sale in order to try and generate some sales and get rid of inventory. So by owning "everything" you can keep costs down.

I suspect that we'll see a lot of look-alike receivers with different brand plates on them -or- we'll see stratification: different brands will be for different levels of quality. There's lots of ways this can go, but I'd be surprised to see ALL of these brands survive just for AVR's and pre-pros. Frankly, I'm surprised that both Denon and Marantz have both survived, although that's only two brands. Now that they'll have Onkyo, Integra, Pioneer and Pioneer Elite, do all six of those lines survive in the long run? Doubtful IMO unless they can find a way to revive the market. One way would be to release smart devices that also connect to a full-fledged receiver or pre-pro. Personally, I think the industry has done a lousy job pushing home theater. About the only thing that's sold well are sound-bars.
Personally I don't see the need for more than two brands today in the mass market. SU and a competitor, which by default is Yamaha.

It could be worse. You could have three AVRs (low @ $499, mid @ $999, and "flagship" somewhere around $2K, roughly 7.1 / 7.1.4 / 9.1.6 ) and a $3K pre/pro from SU, and the three AVR competitors from Yamaha. With everything else the boutique brands in the $4K range or higher - NAD, Monoprice, ATI, Emotiva - outside of the CI and SOTA home designer channels where Trinnov is the leader, starting with the Altitude 16 but where a Storm Audio might have a niche based on close dealer and user support, or a Steinway-Lyngdorf has its own ecosystem.

That would work well IMO if those three tiers of AVRs offered add-on modules or unlocked features for a surcharge, or maybe the option to send in your AVR for a factory refresh every year or so to upgrade the HDMI board or whatever. But that would mean a different way of thinking in the industry, and DSPs thinking toward a longer time window of supporting the latest upgrades more than 18 months.
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post #105 of 149 Old 05-20-2019, 08:44 PM
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Originally Posted by dunnersfella View Post
My pick...
HEOS is combined through out the Pioneer / Integra / Onkyo range... why pay licensing to PlayFi / Flare Connect when you have something you own the IP for.
There'll be one control app to drive all 5 brands of AVR's, hopefully one that finally works.
There will be one GUI (with different brand centric skins over the top) and a generic remote control across the board (preferably the D&M one, not the horrid Ponkyo version).
Rack ears will be kept for the Integra's (same with HDBaseT out etc)... but ultimately I believe things will become homogeneous, leaving consumers with less real choice.


Basically the main brands will be...

DenrantPonkegra
Yamaha
Sony


Arcam, Anthem, NAD etc will fight out to create a niche within a niche.
The thing is though, AVR sales are declining, so what's the point of owning 5 x AVR brands?
This. Make them all HEOS compatible. Major win for consumers.
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post #106 of 149 Old 05-20-2019, 08:51 PM
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I miss the days of Pioneer Elite with the Rosewood side panels. They were amazing.


I was never a fan of Onkyo, Denon or Audyssey. So as far as I'm concerned, those can go away.
Me too. I can do my own EQ, I have had horrible experiences with Onkyo products. I can't say anything bad about Denon but they “appear” like a poor cousin of Marantz. Though, I am prepared to be corrected. In fact, I would be happy to since I would love more choice. I go for Marantz every time because I have never had one of their products fail me in any way. This stuff is quite expensive and I live in a place where getting warranty service is a long and difficult process.
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post #107 of 149 Old 05-20-2019, 09:25 PM
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I guess they will all have similar setup menus,like Denon and Marantz.

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post #108 of 149 Old 05-20-2019, 10:33 PM
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Originally Posted by Menarini View Post
I hope this deal does not materialize, dont want to see O&P bought, O&P should retain their independent identity.

Pioneer is not different from onkyo now, it's the same company after onkyo bought their AV business, so their receivers sound kind of similar, the days of pioneer elite are over.

Most likely.
It's always the good stuff that goes away, and we're stuck with the garbage.
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post #109 of 149 Old 05-21-2019, 07:13 PM
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I say simplify and get the consumer better for cheaper.
HDMI-eARC is THE feature that can slim-down, simplify and cheapen the receivers:
1. high efficiency, low heat class D amps needed
2. lower count of HDMI ports (more integrated services, fewer sources needed, etc.,)
3. slimmer chassis, nicer designs, new designs, and less boxy designs
4. more AUDIO features
5. fewer VIDEO features
6. fewer complications (more reliable)
7. more consumer satisfaction
8. a little more futureproofed device
I disagree with a few of these.
No—Lower count of HDMI ports. Most offer 6 and I need more than that now.
1-Dish network
2-Blu-ray player
3-Xbox One X
4-Xbox 360
5-PS4
6-Security cameras
7-Amazon Fire tv 4K
I’m already short one port. And as time goes on probably more.

No—slimmer chassis. Needs to be able to be rack mounted.

No—not sure what you mean by fewer video features. To me that is one area that’s just about right.
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post #110 of 149 Old 05-21-2019, 09:59 PM
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Receivers are a commodity component now. Its all standardized protocols and the same SoC's with the only difference being sound processing and whatever buzzwords the marketing team comes up with.

The whole divide between prepros, budget and high end AVRs is purely artificial at this point since there's no reason why this can't be a software upgrade. Imagine if you had to buy different pc's to be able to decode different kinds of music/movies. There is also no reason why you shouldn't be able to add more HDMI inputs/speaker outs by plugging in extensions, just like you do on a pc or use dongles on a laptop.

Its a very protected industry because no one really wants to threaten the status quo.
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post #111 of 149 Old 05-21-2019, 11:05 PM
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Receivers are a commodity component now. Its all standardized protocols and the same SoC's with the only difference being sound processing and whatever buzzwords the marketing team comes up with.



The whole divide between prepros, budget and high end AVRs is purely artificial at this point since there's no reason why this can't be a software upgrade. Imagine if you had to buy different pc's to be able to decode different kinds of music/movies. There is also no reason why you shouldn't be able to add more HDMI inputs/speaker outs by plugging in extensions, just like you do on a pc or use dongles on a laptop.



Its a very protected industry because no one really wants to threaten the status quo.
Software upgrade/update won't bring additional amplification channels and change their quality

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post #112 of 149 Old 05-21-2019, 11:30 PM
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Receivers are a commodity component now. Its all standardized protocols and the same SoC's with the only difference being sound processing and whatever buzzwords the marketing team comes up with.



The whole divide between prepros, budget and
high end AVRs is purely artificial at this point since there's no reason why this can't be a software upgrade. Imagine if you had to buy different pc's to be able to decode different kinds of music/movies. There is also no reason why you shouldn't be able to add more HDMI inputs/speaker outs by plugging in extensions, just like you do on a pc or use dongles on a laptop.



Its a very protected industry because no one really wants to threaten the status quo.
Software upgrade/update won't bring additional amplification channels and change their quality

Sent from my Mi Note 3 using Tapatalk
Yep. You’re correct. And with hdmi handshake issues even adding a matrix is tricky. I know. I tried.
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post #113 of 149 Old 05-22-2019, 12:02 AM
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Originally Posted by vavan View Post
Software upgrade/update won't bring additional amplification channels and change their quality
Yeah, but @Defcon was also talking about
Quote:
There is also no reason why you shouldn't be able to add more HDMI inputs/speaker outs by plugging in extensions, just like you do on a pc or use dongles on a laptop.
More modular AVRs! Modular hardware and upgradable software. Win-win.
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post #114 of 149 Old 05-22-2019, 02:24 AM
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Originally Posted by dfa973 View Post
Quote:
Originally Posted by vavan View Post
Software upgrade/update won't bring additional amplification channels and change their quality
Yeah, but @Defcon was also talking about
Quote:
There is also no reason why you shouldn't be able to add more HDMI inputs/speaker outs by plugging in extensions, just like you do on a pc or use dongles on a laptop.
More modular AVRs! Modular hardware and upgradable software. Win-win.
Modular AVRs? So like adding a pre/pro? We already do that. I personally don’t want a bunch of smaller pieces all wired together to make my AVR.

The overall consensus here has been that we (HT/AVR buyers) are the minority because people find AVRs complicated. This suggestion of multiple pieces that select to build a AVR makes it more complicated not less. To a pc person that swaps out cards and fans etc they don’t see this as a big deal. But the average person wants to buy something and have it work out of the box. They don’t want to program or tinker with settings. I bet if you did a poll most people would tell you that they haven’t even adjusted the picture settings on their tv. Crazy? Yup I think so. And I’m sure you do too. But the average person isn’t on AVS forums.
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post #115 of 149 Old 05-22-2019, 05:23 AM
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Originally Posted by paindonthurt View Post
Modular AVRs? So like adding a pre/pro? We already do that. I personally don’t want a bunch of smaller pieces all wired together to make my AVR.
Nope, modular AVRs means AVRs with internal modules that can be swapped/replaced/upgraded.

Quote:
Originally Posted by paindonthurt View Post
The overall consensus here has been that we (HT/AVR buyers) are the minority because people find AVRs complicated. This suggestion of multiple pieces that select to build a AVR makes it more complicated not less. To a pc person that swaps out cards and fans etc they don’t see this as a big deal. But the average person wants to buy something and have it work out of the box. They don’t want to program or tinker with settings. I bet if you did a poll most people would tell you that they haven’t even adjusted the picture settings on their tv. Crazy? Yup I think so. And I’m sure you do too. But the average person isn’t on AVS forums.
True!

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post #116 of 149 Old 05-22-2019, 05:36 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by paindonthurt View Post
Modular AVRs? So like adding a pre/pro? We already do that. I personally don’t want a bunch of smaller pieces all wired together to make my AVR.
Nope, modular AVRs means AVRs with internal modules that can be swapped/replaced/upgraded.
That makes it even less appealing to the average Joe. They don’t want to open anything up. And they probably wouldn’t have the faintest idea of how to even begin. Internal modules would make AVRs an even more niche market than now and could be the death blow. (I don’t see the industry going this way so I’m honestly not concerned)
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post #117 of 149 Old 05-22-2019, 09:16 AM
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I disagree with a few of these.
No—Lower count of HDMI ports. Most offer 6 and I need more than that now.
1-Dish network
2-Blu-ray player
3-Xbox One X
4-Xbox 360
5-PS4
6-Security cameras
7-Amazon Fire tv 4K
I’m already short one port. And as time goes on probably more.
Doesn't the PS4 play BlueRay? Why do you have a separate BlueRay player? The only thing I could think of is a streaming service not on Amazon Fire stick, like Vudu.
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post #118 of 149 Old 05-22-2019, 09:21 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by paindonthurt View Post
I disagree with a few of these.
No—Lower count of HDMI ports. Most offer 6 and I need more than that now.
1-Dish network
2-Blu-ray player
3-Xbox One X
4-Xbox 360
5-PS4
6-Security cameras
7-Amazon Fire tv 4K
I’m already short one port. And as time goes on probably more.
Doesn't the PS4 play BlueRay? Why do you have a separate BlueRay player? The only thing I could think of is a streaming service not on Amazon Fire stick, like Vudu.
The Xbox One X has a 4K Blu-ray player. But a stand alone player has better audio/video playback options.
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post #119 of 149 Old 05-22-2019, 10:33 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by paindonthurt View Post
I disagree with a few of these.
No—Lower count of HDMI ports. Most offer 6 and I need more than that now.
1-Dish network
2-Blu-ray player
3-Xbox One X
4-Xbox 360
5-PS4
6-Security cameras
7-Amazon Fire tv 4K
I’m already short one port. And as time goes on probably more.

No—slimmer chassis. Needs to be able to be rack mounted.

No—not sure what you mean by fewer video features. To me that is one area that’s just about right.
I think what he means by fewer video features are things like upscaling. Most displays and players are plenty capable of handling anything of that sort.

A Marantz NR1609 Slim AVR has 7 HDMI inputs, is rack mountable, and has the right amount of video features. There you go. Just what you need in a low-profile, slim package.
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post #120 of 149 Old 05-22-2019, 10:40 AM
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Originally Posted by Radio81 View Post
Quote:
Originally Posted by paindonthurt View Post
I disagree with a few of these.
No—Lower count of HDMI ports. Most offer 6 and I need more than that now.
1-Dish network
2-Blu-ray player
3-Xbox One X
4-Xbox 360
5-PS4
6-Security cameras
7-Amazon Fire tv 4K
I’m already short one port. And as time goes on probably more.

No—slimmer chassis. Needs to be able to be rack mounted.

No—not sure what you mean by fewer video features. To me that is one area that’s just about right.
I think what he means by fewer video features are things like upscaling. Most displays and players are plenty capable of handling anything of that sort.

A Marantz NR1609 Slim AVR has 7 HDMI inputs, is rack mountable, and has the right amount of video features. There you go. Just what you need in a low-profile, slim package.
Not just what I need not even close. At $499 for those features? NOPE. I would buy a sound bar. Lol
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