Originally Posted by markus767
I don't accept that the user needs to test a unit whether it is fit for purpose or not. Especially not at that price point.
No argument from me. I don't like that in my computers, either, but nonetheless I had to do a fresh Windows 10 re-install on a brand new PC to make it work.
What are those "other benefits"?
A mix of features unavailable from mass market purveyors. In the case of the SSP-800, I was looking for something of the quality of the Tag McLaren AV32R, but with HDMI inputs, with equivalent PEQ and 96 kHz support throughout, premium volume controls and DACs/preamps. The SSP-800 was pretty much alone on that list, but it's been in use daily for >10 years, and sounds a good as ever as the heart of my music system.
In the realm of immersive processors, finding ones with superior room correction (manual PEQ, or Dirac or better), and high sample rate support narrows the field real fast. And try to find a mass market AVR or processor that does not use the typical Renesas jungle volume chips (or their cousins). The Cirrus CS3318 is just too rich for these price points, but they're found in many of the boutique models, including the HTP-1.
More competition obviously did not lead to better products but instead we got plenty of expensive, bug-ridden metal boxes that have been rushed out the door.
As time goes on, and the home theater market continues to contract to those of us holdouts who'd rather not watch movies on a TV with a sound bar, the cost to produce immersive AV processors becomes more expensive and the skill more scare. We're lucky anyone still wants to be in this business, let alone jump in at this point. Kudos to Monoprice.
Which companies have great after sales support? In my experience, Emotiva, Arcam and NAD are certainly NOT on that list.
I've never had the pleasure of those. From my observations, I'd say Trinnov, Datasat, Monoprice, possibly Lyngdorf, and now absent from the HT scene, Oppo, Tag McLaren and Classe. I'm sure there are others.
Deadwood II Theater
(Previous Deadwood Theater HTOM
Anthem AVM 60 7.4.4; Classé SSP-800 PLIIx 7.4; MiniDSP OpenDRC-AN
Oppo UDP-203; Oppo BDP-93; Win10 media PC w/Roon+Kodi; Roku Ultra; DirecTV Genie
Adam Audio S3V/S3H LCR, KEF Ci200QS 4 srrnd, Tannoy Di6 DC 4 hts, Hsu ULS-15 4 subs
JVC RS520; Stewart Cima Neve screen 125" diag 2.35:1, MLP at 115"