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I'm new to pre-amp stuff. I just end using pre-am and power amp from my receiver. I'm planning to upgrade now and I was looking at Pioneer VSX-D812K.


What does peamp input means ?


Here are specs from Pioneer VSX-D812K


7.1-channel preamp input

6.1-channel preamp output


This is 6.1 receiver (6 amplified channels) . Why someone want input 7.1 decrete channels to a 6.1 amplifier of 812?


Does anyone know whether this receiver has upgradability for 7.1 by connecting external amplifier for the two rear speakers? (like kenwood 6070)


Can the rear center speaker output be split to make it 7.1?
 

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Quote:
Originally posted by a_dixit
Why someone want input 7.1 decrete channels to a 6.1 amplifier of 812?
They wouldn't. But, it certainly wouldn't be the first time a Japanese receiver manufacturer has put an utterly worthless feature on a product.


That's been their stock in trade for three decades. "7.1" is bigger than "6.1", so it must be better. The last laugh is on us, of course, since consumers actually swallow these useless features hook, line, 'n sinker.


Watch...next year's big new feature will be 9.1 channel surround with a couple more matrix decoders deriving crappy right center and left center front channels from Dolby 5.1 discs. Then, the receiver manufacturers will jump all over each other to put ten analog inputs on the back panel.


The real reason is that the chip manufacturers put eight analog inputs on this year's DSP chips. It's a moot point. With only 300,000 DVD-A discs sold in the US last year, it's pretty obvious that nobody is using the multi-channel analog inputs anyway. Whether there are six or eight RCA jacks sitting empty on the back of the receiver, doesn't really matter.
 

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Hwc, aren't you full of Doom and Gloom regarding Hi-res audio. It takes time for things to get rolling. How long before CDs really took over? How about DVDs? I purchased a few of those 300,000 DVD-A discs last year. I, and many others, use those multi-channel inputs for our SACD and DVD-A collections. Just because joe 6pack hasn't started buying them in bulk, does not make it useless as you imply. There is a price to pay for being an early adopter you know... :D


Granted, I think 7.1 preamp inputs is a bit premature, but I can't see how this could be even remotely construed as bad. When they go all digital for the connection, it'll be a lot easier, but those multi-channel inputs can be useful for hooking into computers and whatnot.


The only thing that is pretty obvious is that you have a real problem with the Japanese equipment manufacturers and a dislike for sacd and dvd-a. (going from prior posts). Just because you don't use the multi-channel inputs, doesn't mean that others don't.


Sorny
 

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I have a distaste for gimmick features and formats that don't work properly with the equipment that is available in the marketplace.


There are only two ways of properly configuring a multichannel DVD-A system that I can see. One is to have full bass managment in the DVD player. The other is to bag digital bass management altogether. Buy five or six channels of Marchand Linkwitz-Riley analog crossovers and design an analog summing device for the low-pass output to the subwoofer. That seems a little crazy to me, given that every $199 Dolby Digital receiver on the shelves has the equivalent of those six crossovers built in. Got any other suggestions for redirecting the bass from your surround and center channels to your subwoofer?


As for the Japanese brands. I love 'em for what they do: build cool stuff at great prices. But, they've always been feature and spec crazy -- often to the great detriment of good sound. Here's an example: had it not been for the long-standing watts per dollar and THD wars, we would be able to buy receivers with very good sounding 50 watt per channel amplifiers with no current limiting and restrained use of negative feedback. The blame's gotta go where it belongs.


Once upon a time, Onkyo and Sony both made inexpensive integrated amps that would go head to head with the best audiophile amplifiers. In fact, the Onkyo integrateds were virtually identical circuit designs to some of James Bongiorno's stuff. That is no longer possible because to put a good amplifier in a receiver, it would have to be rated at 40 watts per channel, even though it would probably play rings around the "100 watts" in today's receivers. Oh...and they'd have to use heat sinks.
 

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It takes time to get all the kinks worked out... I hear your frustration fully regarding the kinks though. Now that there is a standard digital link (i.Link), these multi-channel ins will be less important, but I'm all for having options.


H/K is one of the few who rate honestly today, along with NAD and Rotel. Damn shame the FTC method wasn't just expanded for multi-channel amps.


BTW, I'm busting your balls, nothing more. :D


Sorny
 

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Quote:
As for the Japanese brands. I love 'em for what they do: build cool stuff at great prices. But, they've always been feature and spec crazy -- often to the great detriment of good sound. Here's an example: had it not been for the long-standing watts per dollar and THD wars, we would be able to buy receivers with very good sounding 50 watt per channel amplifiers with no current limiting and restrained use of negative feedback. The blame's gotta go where it belongs.
As if the Japanese brands were the only ones heading to those directions??? How about others? Show me a non-exotic, American or British or whatever brand that does not do these things at all, and still keeps up with the latest "useful" technologies... :D


And those DSP chips with the "useless" 7.1 input... Who started the trend and makes good many of them? American companies, not Japanese.


I understand your frustrations and do agree in general, but linking it categorically to the Japanese brands is plain wrong and unfounded.



Back to a_dixit's original question: I believe that the receiver is capable of matrix-synthesizing the center-surround output from the surround-rear L/R inputs (and by mixing-in other inputs, too, depending on the surround mode). So, the 7.1 input will be meaningfully used.
 

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Quote:
Originally posted by sushi
As if the Japanese brands were the only ones heading to those directions??? How about others? Show me a non-exotic, American or British or whatever brand that does not do these things at all, and still keeps up with the latest "useful" technologies...
I have had the true pleasure of working with the largest Japanese brand on the development of custom OEM products -- some that were manufactured in Japan and some that were manufactured in SouthEast Asia. I have the upmost respect for what these companies do. The speed and quality of the way they turn around massive tooling projects is amazing.


In many ways, the consistent cycle by which they introduce a new technology and then drive the price down to $99 is a very good thing. I mean, it's certainly nice to be able to go buy a $99 Hi-Fi VCR or a $299 Dolby Digital receiver. But, I don't think we should hide our heads in the sand. This "hi-fi" stuff is no different than a boom box or a TV audio circuit: it just comes in a bigger box. That's why I laugh a bit at the thought of holding on to audiophile pretenses when, if you open up a DVD player, you will probably find the same circuit layouts that come in a portable player.


I fully understand and agree with your suggestion that the "American" brands are building the same stuff. They have to...if you want to sell a Dolby Digital receiver or DVD player, you have no choice but to OEM the basic package. Maybe you can hang a few ornaments on it. Maybe you can beef up the amplifier a bit. Maybe you can substitute a boutique brand op amp or capacitor. But, it's fundamentally the same product.


To me, the damage was done 20 years ago when the hi-fi industry shifted to a feature and specsheet driven commodity market. The consumer pays the price for so many features they can't even figure out what they do or how to use them, when one less $5 royalty for the gazillionth surround sound decoder algorith would have paid for an audibly significant improvement in the power amp section.


To me, the ideal surround sound receiver would have a Dolby Digital decoder, a Pro Logic II decoder, a 2-channel stero mode, and five honest 75 watt channels of good amplfication. Easy to use, simple to explain, sounds great int he real world. Instead, the market is locked in a surround sound feature war that makes these products increasingly incomprehensible to the consumre. Can you image trying to explain surround modes on a Dolby Digital EX/DTS-ES/ProLogic II receiver to your next door neighbor? It's impossible.
 

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Quote:
To me, the damage was done 20 years ago when the hi-fi industry shifted to a feature and specsheet driven commodity market. The consumer pays the price for so many features they can't even figure out what they do or how to use them, when one less $5 royalty for the gazillionth surround sound decoder algorith would have paid for an audibly significant improvement in the power amp section.
hwc,


The fundamental problem here is that, you know, the subtle improvement that is "audible" to you -- and perhaps to me, and to many "well-informed" people here -- is just inaudible or does not get any attention from 90% of the consumer. A "good" manufacturer, as a corporate, would of course respond accordingly.


Twenty yeas ago, there was no other way of differentiating one's own amps/receivers than to produce and advertise better sound quality. But as the analog amplifier technology matures, the room for the improvement that can be executed within a "non-exotic" cost has also become smaller and smaller. Say the law of diminishing returns.


You can call the whole trend either "the art of cost-control" or "the blatant disrespect for the consumer." Either way, this is the reality today...

Quote:
Can you image trying to explain surround modes on a Dolby Digital EX/DTS-ES/ProLogic II receiver to your next door neighbor? It's impossible.
I still do not completely grasp all the features of my own 45TX after two weeks... LOL
 

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Quote:
Originally posted by sushi
hwc,


The fundamental problem here is that, you know, the subtle improvement that is "audible" to you -- and perhaps to me, and to many "well-informed" people here -- is just inaudible or does not get any attention from 90% of the consumer. A "good" manufacturer, as a corporate, would of course respond accordingly.
No, I'm not even talking about audiophile stuff. I'm talking about basic amplifier performance. Classic example. Back in the mid-1970's Pioneer started the watts per dollar race with their SX-1250 "165 watt per channel" stereo receiver. The thing was as big as a refrigerator and filled with lights, buttons, switches, and useless gizmos. It was a truly dreadful sounding product with current limiting and negative feedback out the whazoo. At the time, HK made a cheap little receiver - the HK430 -- rated at 40 watts per channel. In a direct A-B comparison with the thyroid Pioneer (same speakers, same everythng), the HK would play signficantly louder with significantly tighter bass. Not audiophile stuff: stuff anyone who listened to the two receivers could recognize.


But, as hi-fi became mass market, it gravitated towards lowest common denominator -- on both the sales floor and the consumer's mind. Reading the "watts" and "distortion specs" on the specsheet was the full extent of it. So, the manufacturers designed towards those numbers, knowing full well that the things they were doing to achieve those numbers were killing the real performance of those products.


The sad thing today is that there is no middle ground between the mass-merchant $99 boxes and the equally illogical high-end trade. For the most part, the days of good solid sensible high-value products (like a Hafler amplifier) and the dealers who sell them are gone.


There are products in the middle (Sony ES, Pioneer Elite, etc.), but by and large these are basically the same products as the mass merchant stuff, just with more features and thicker faceplates. Rotel is an example of a company that works the middle fairly well with their amplfiiers: good well-engineered designs with the cost efficiencies of SE Asian manufacturing.


I'm OK with the current state of affairs. I've accepted the fact that it's a price-point driven mass-merchant world and that hi-fi electronics should be viewed no differently than a boom-box or a shelf system or a computer. Honestly, the preamp in my Discman or Sony TV probably uses the same op-amps as the preamp sections of all these receivers. On the flip side of that acceptance, I'm not going to attribute any magical sonic qualities to any particular brand -- not when it's a commodity business.


It also helps to understand the predicatable and repeatable product development cycles. Why buy a Sony DVD player for $1000 when you know that 18 months later, they will have driven the price down to $99? You can watch the receiver offerings from year to year and identify exactly what this year's "new" feature is -- 6.1, Pro Logic II, Surround EX. This year it's 24bit/192kHz digital processing, even though there is no real use for it. Once that hits the $199 price point, it'll be 48 bit/384kHz (to justify the price of a $1000 receiver), just as predictable as the change in seasons. I expect next year to be Surround EX II (aka THX Ultra II).
 
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