JBL Synthesis SDP-55 (16ch, 9.1.6 Atmos Surround Sound Processor) - Page 4 - AVS Forum | Home Theater Discussions And Reviews
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post #91 of 2457 Old 10-03-2019, 06:53 PM
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I am following closely the development of the SDP-55 as it may well suit my needs for a new 16Ch processor early next year. I have a few questions that some of you here may know the answer to.

From what I understand the DAC chipset in this model will be 2x ESS9028 8Ch. This to me implies that output from each channel will be unbalanced? There are of course XLR connectors on the rear panel but do these carry a truly balanced signal or are they carrying a mirror of the unbalanced RCA connection? I recall reading somewhere that previous model Arcam processors were configured in this way but could be mistaken on that.

Also does anyone know how the volume control is being handled? Is it in the analog domain using a resistive ladder network or will it be digitally controlled within the DAC chip itself? It would make some sense for the volume to be digitally controlled prior to being sent out via Dante I guess?

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post #92 of 2457 Old 10-04-2019, 02:22 AM
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Originally Posted by TAGmanz View Post
I am following closely the development of the SDP-55 as it may well suit my needs for a new 16Ch processor early next year. I have a few questions that some of you here may know the answer to.

From what I understand the DAC chipset in this model will be 2x ESS9028 8Ch. This to me implies that output from each channel will be unbalanced? There are of course XLR connectors on the rear panel but do these carry a truly balanced signal or are they carrying a mirror of the unbalanced RCA connection? I recall reading somewhere that previous model Arcam processors were configured in this way but could be mistaken on that.

Also does anyone know how the volume control is being handled? Is it in the analog domain using a resistive ladder network or will it be digitally controlled within the DAC chip itself? It would make some sense for the volume to be digitally controlled prior to being sent out via Dante I guess?
Dante won't touch the DAC's in the processor at all and use whatever DAC is on the other end which would be inside a Dante enabled amplifier.

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post #93 of 2457 Old 10-04-2019, 07:52 AM
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Originally Posted by TAGmanz View Post
I am following closely the development of the SDP-55 as it may well suit my needs for a new 16Ch processor early next year. I have a few questions that some of you here may know the answer to.

From what I understand the DAC chipset in this model will be 2x ESS9028 8Ch. (1) This to me implies that output from each channel will be unbalanced? There are of course (2) XLR connectors on the rear panel but do these carry a truly balanced signal or are they carrying a mirror of the unbalanced RCA connection? I recall reading somewhere that previous model Arcam processors were configured in this way but could be mistaken on that.

Also does anyone know (3) how the volume control is being handled? Is it in the analog domain using a resistive ladder network or will it be digitally controlled within the DAC chip itself? It would make some sense for the volume to be digitally controlled prior to being sent out via Dante I guess?

(1) Why does the use of two ESS9028 DAC IC's imply that the output is unbalanced. Please explain.

(2) The design you are describing is commonly used, and is a perfectly valid way to produce a balanced signal for transport over balanced cables from an XLR output. Balanced means equal impedance to ground from each conductor. The circuit you are describing will produce a balanced signal if designed correctly. Please explain in depth why the circuit you have described will not create a balanced signal.

(3) Based on your brief descriptions, either of these methods are the most commonly used volume control methods in the products normally discussed on this forum.
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post #94 of 2457 Old 10-04-2019, 07:23 PM
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Originally Posted by bigguyca View Post

(1) Why does the use of two ESS9028 DAC IC's imply that the output is unbalanced. Please explain.

(2) The design you are describing is commonly used, and is a perfectly valid way to produce a balanced signal for transport over balanced cables from an XLR output. Balanced means equal impedance to ground from each conductor. The circuit you are describing will produce a balanced signal if designed correctly. Please explain in depth why the circuit you have described will not create a balanced signal.

(3) Based on your brief descriptions, either of these methods are the most commonly used volume control methods in the products normally discussed on this forum.
Thanks for your response. My original post was perhaps not as clear as I had thought at the time.

What I am trying to determine is if the internal architecture is "fully", "truly" or by whatever other term takes your fancy, balanced from the output of the DAC to rear panel XLR connector.

1) It is my (quite possibly flawed) understanding that in order for the analog signal path to be balanced from source to output connection it requires the use of two DAC's per channel. One each for the positive and negative half of the waveform. In the case of a 16ch processor this would mean 32 independent DAC channels. Two 8ch ESS9028 DAC IC's clearly does not meet this criterior.

2) I was not proposing that a balanced output could not be derived via appropriate circuitry from a single DAC channel or indeed that it was in any way uncommon to do this.

As mentioned above I was trying to determine if the entire signal path was balanced. Please understand that I am not trying to argue for one implementation or the other I was simply seeking clarification of what the internal architecture is.

3) Again, not arguing for one method over the other. Just trying to determine whether the volume control is done in the digital or analog domain or possible even both?
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post #95 of 2457 Old 10-04-2019, 08:42 PM
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Originally Posted by bigguyca View Post
(1) Why does the use of two ESS9028 DAC IC's imply that the output is unbalanced. Please explain.

(2) The design you are describing is commonly used, and is a perfectly valid way to produce a balanced signal for transport over balanced cables from an XLR output. Balanced means equal impedance to ground from each conductor. The circuit you are describing will produce a balanced signal if designed correctly. Please explain in depth why the circuit you have described will not create a balanced signal.

(3) Based on your brief descriptions, either of these methods are the most commonly used volume control methods in the products normally discussed on this forum.
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Thanks for your response. My original post was perhaps not as clear as I had thought at the time.

What I am trying to determine is if the internal architecture is "fully", "truly" or by whatever other term takes your fancy, balanced from the output of the DAC to rear panel XLR connector.

1) It is my (quite possibly flawed) understanding that in order for the analog signal path to be balanced from source to output connection it requires the use of two DAC's per channel. One each for the positive and negative half of the waveform. In the case of a 16ch processor this would mean 32 independent DAC channels. Two 8ch ESS9028 DAC IC's clearly does not meet this criterior.

2) I was not proposing that a balanced output could not be derived via appropriate circuitry from a single DAC channel or indeed that it was in any way uncommon to do this.

As mentioned above I was trying to determine if the entire signal path was balanced. Please understand that I am not trying to argue for one implementation or the other I was simply seeking clarification of what the internal architecture is.

3) Again, not arguing for one method over the other. Just trying to determine whether the volume control is done in the digital or analog domain or possible even both?

1) Each channel of an ESS9028 has a + and - current output. At a minimum in a quality design the two outputs are converted to voltage outputs and filtered by I/V converters. This provides +/- outputs that can be used for a balanced/differential output, one balanced output per channel. Essentially all DAC IC's have a +/- output, either current or voltage. It isn't clear why you believe two DAC IC channels are required for a balanced output, please explain.

2) The SP-55 is not yet available. As such it is hard to know the internal design. You may want to contact someone at JBL with your question.

3) Certainly the volume control can be done in a variety of ways. Again, the SP-55 isn't available.
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post #96 of 2457 Old 10-04-2019, 09:45 PM
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Originally Posted by bigguyca View Post
1) Each channel of an ESS9028 has a + and - current output. At a minimum in a quality design the two outputs are converted to voltage outputs and filtered by I/V converters. This provides +/- outputs that can be used for a balanced/differential output, one balanced output per channel. Essentially all DAC IC's have a +/- output, either current or voltage. It isn't clear why you believe two DAC IC channels are required for a balanced output, please explain.

2) The SP-55 is not yet available. As such it is hard to know the internal design. You may want to contact someone at JBL with your question.

3) Certainly the volume control can be done in a variety of ways. Again, the SP-55 isn't available.
Your answer was very educational. Thank you.
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post #97 of 2457 Old 10-06-2019, 03:13 PM - Thread Starter
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Don't know if this was on the site before but the spec sheet has been added-

https://www.jblsynthesis.com/on/dema...t_EN_V2_LR.pdf
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post #98 of 2457 Old 10-09-2019, 03:55 PM
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I just found interfaces to go from Dante to AES EBU and Blu-link, which covers all of my amps. "Relatively" inexpensive (less than $1500 for both units). This just put this unit at the top of my list.

Going all digital to my amps will be awesome and something I've wanted to do for a long time. It will be nice to get rid of the 50 foot XLR runs and all the other XLR's in the back of the rack
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post #99 of 2457 Old 10-09-2019, 04:06 PM
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I just found interfaces to go from Dante to AES EBU and Blu-link, which covers all of my amps. "Relatively" inexpensive (less than $1500 for both units). This just put this unit at the top of my list.

Going all digital to my amps will be awesome and something I've wanted to do for a long time. It will be nice to get rid of the 50 foot XLR runs and all the other XLR's in the back of the rack
Just make sure the Dante receiver (amp or AES EBU/Blu-Link) have good DACs as the DA conversion will be done on the receiver and not on the SDP-55. On live/PA audio application that does not matter too much as signal to noise ratio are elevated compared to home audio applications so a not high end DAC on the Dante pre amp is OK.

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post #100 of 2457 Old 10-09-2019, 04:10 PM
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Just make sure the Dante receiver (amp or AES EBU/Blu-Link) have good DACs as the DA conversion will be done on the receiver and not on the SDP-55. On live/PA audio application that does not matter too much as signal to noise ratio are elevated compared to home audio applications so a not high end DAC on the Dante pre amp is OK.
It's done on my amps regardless since my speakers are active. It will simply eliminate an unnecessary DA conversion in the SDP-55 and an AD conversion in my amp.
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post #101 of 2457 Old 10-11-2019, 05:13 PM - Thread Starter
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post #102 of 2457 Old 10-11-2019, 06:12 PM
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A curious thing he mentioned at the end of the video is that the SDP-65 offers "independent crossover" for each speaker. So looks like the SDP-55 still will offer a single crossover for the bed speakers.

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post #103 of 2457 Old 10-11-2019, 10:18 PM
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You continue thinking of DTS:X Pro as an upmixer: Pro simply lifts the current 11-speaker limit. It is not an upmixer like Logic16. To upmix legacy 5.1/7.1 sources to your speaker layout, DTS already has an upmixer called Neural:X. Pro simply lifts the current 11-speaker limit. Pro is not something you apply to legacy sources.
Well, DTS:X Pro includes the new DTS Neural: XTM up-mixer. Maybe thats a bit confusing.

To Logic 16: The new Lexicon RV-9 comes with "Logic 7 immersion". This failed in a multichannel test of a german magazine. Thats not a good sign...

I hope DTS:X Pro will be available from day 1, because I don't won't silent loudspeakers in my cinema…
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post #104 of 2457 Old 10-11-2019, 11:00 PM
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Well, DTS:X Pro includes the new DTS Neural: XTM up-mixer. Maybe thats a bit confusing.
Less confusing if you type it out as DTS Neural:X™ (™ is the trade mark logo). There is no "new DTS Neural: XTM up-mixer".
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post #105 of 2457 Old 10-12-2019, 11:14 AM
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A curious thing he mentioned at the end of the video is that the SDP-65 offers "independent crossover" for each speaker. So looks like the SDP-55 still will offer a single crossover for the bed speakers.
Good catch. PREVIOUS model Arcam units offered a single crossover.

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post #106 of 2457 Old 10-12-2019, 05:59 PM
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Good catch. PREVIOUS model Arcam units offered a single crossover.
Ugh. What can we expect for a measly 6K? I can only imagine the hardware upgrades necessary to implement individual crossovers, lol .

Not sure we can make the leap that the SDP-55 won't have individual crossovers based on that alone, but likely not a deal breaker for me regardless.
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post #107 of 2457 Old 10-13-2019, 03:27 AM
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I wouldn't jump to that conclusion either. To me it sounded more like the SDP-65 will offer some of the much more complex bass management options that the SDP-75 allows that go well beyond a simple crossover frequency for each speaker--I would fully expect the SDP-55 to have that capability.
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post #108 of 2457 Old 10-13-2019, 03:34 AM
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Ugh. What can we expect for a measly 6K? I can only imagine the hardware upgrades necessary to implement individual crossovers, lol .

Not sure we can make the leap that the SDP-55 won't have individual crossovers based on that alone, but likely not a deal breaker for me regardless.
Considering a D&M under 1k can set individual crossovers it isn't much of an excuse to not do it on everything.

Also isn't the SDP-65 just a rebranded Altitude 16 while the SDP-75 is the Altitude 32?
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post #109 of 2457 Old 10-13-2019, 03:54 AM
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Originally Posted by Mashie Saldana View Post
Considering a D&M under 1k can set individual crossovers it isn't much of an excuse to not do it on everything.

Also isn't the SDP-65 just a rebranded Altitude 16 while the SDP-75 is the Altitude 32?
That's it (as said before)
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post #110 of 2457 Old 10-13-2019, 06:55 AM
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Also isn't the SDP-65 just a rebranded Altitude 16 while the SDP-75 is the Altitude 32?
Yes, but the JBL models do not have PEQ or remapping.

JBL models will have some of the JBL and Revel speaker curves preloaded which is nice if you own or plan to buy those speakers.

Note the SDP65 and Alt16 do not have digital out.

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post #111 of 2457 Old 10-13-2019, 08:47 AM
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Note the SDP65 and Alt16 do not have digital out.
Inclusion of Dante on the SDP-55 is a big deal IMO. Digital outs are typically expensive upgrades on already very expensive prepros. Compared to other solutions, Dante is a particularly easy to implement, about as simple as wiring can get, and the availability of interface bridges to other formats (AES/EBU and Blu-link) make it possible to use existing amps.

I'm surprised they used it on their "budget" prepro given its not available on much pricier options.
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Can Dante be used on some channels and XLR on others? I mean can you mix Dante amps with regular amps or it all or none thing?

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post #113 of 2457 Old 10-13-2019, 08:59 AM
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Inclusion of Dante on the SDP-55 is a big deal IMO. Digital outs are typically expensive upgrades on already very expensive prepros. Compared to other solutions, Dante is a particularly easy to implement, about as simple as wiring can get, and the availability of interface bridges to other formats (AES/EBU and Blu-link) make it possible to use existing amps.

I'm surprised they used it on their "budget" prepro given its not available on much pricier options.
Both the Altitude 16 and 32 have Audio Network ports, they just aren't enabled yet. I read somewhere that they will be enabled next year so Dante may be available there too in the near future.

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post #114 of 2457 Old 10-13-2019, 10:25 AM
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Both the Altitude 16 and 32 have Audio Network ports, they just aren't enabled yet. I read somewhere that they will be enabled next year so Dante may be available there too in the near future.
Digital is hot on the Altitude 32.

While at Genelec in March they got a unit in to test.

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post #115 of 2457 Old 10-13-2019, 10:28 AM
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Can Dante be used on some channels and XLR on others? I mean can you mix Dante amps with regular amps or it all or none thing?

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I would think so.

IIRC Dante (depending on the version implemented) AES67 is good to go as well.

AES3 and Blulink will need converters as Mr. Gooddoc had previously mentioned.

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post #116 of 2457 Old 10-13-2019, 11:13 AM
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I would think so.

IIRC Dante (depending on the version implemented) AES67 is good to go as well.

AES3 and Blulink will need converters as Mr. Gooddoc had previously mentioned.
Mike - do you know of any other (JBL 7120 aside) consumer amps that will be Dante enabled coming down the pike?
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post #117 of 2457 Old 10-13-2019, 11:17 AM
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Mike - do you know of any other (JBL 7120 aside) consumer amps that will be Dante enabled coming down the pike?
Dunno. Will poke around.

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post #118 of 2457 Old 10-13-2019, 11:20 AM
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^^^

Try Crown or QSC.

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post #119 of 2457 Old 10-13-2019, 11:37 AM
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Can Dante be used on some channels and XLR on others? I mean can you mix Dante amps with regular amps or it all or none thing?

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Most likely yes. On Dante audio network any Input can be routed to multiple Outputs. I'm pretty sure you would need to use Dante Editor to patch the Dante channels, though.

Enrico Castagnetti @ Rythmik Audio - Dialing In Rythmik Audio Subwoofers - REW for macOS
Media Room: Sierra Towers w/RAAL, Horizon w/RAAL, Sierra 2s & Lunas | Rythmik G22 (x2) + FV25HP | Denon X6500H | Panny 820 + ATV 4K | Bluesound Node 2 | Sony 77A9G OLED |
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post #120 of 2457 Old 10-13-2019, 11:54 AM
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BTW, Dante amps from Crown aren't cheap. A 8 channels Crown Dante amp is around $5500.

Enrico Castagnetti @ Rythmik Audio - Dialing In Rythmik Audio Subwoofers - REW for macOS
Media Room: Sierra Towers w/RAAL, Horizon w/RAAL, Sierra 2s & Lunas | Rythmik G22 (x2) + FV25HP | Denon X6500H | Panny 820 + ATV 4K | Bluesound Node 2 | Sony 77A9G OLED |
Desktop: Dynaudio BM5 mkIII | Rythmik L22 | Apogee Quartet | 27" iMac| Bedroom: B&W 685 S2 | Rythmik LVX12 | Marantz SR6013 | Sony X700 + ATV 4K | Sony XBR-65Z9D |
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