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I have finally decided to spend the money and upgrade while simplifying my system. That said... I need a preamp/processor which can make me happy for both movies and music.


I have always liked the neutrality and clarity of the Anthem. Yesterday, I also went and listened to the Krell. It sounded very nice too. Without hearing them both on the same system, I'd have to say that they were indistinguishable for movies and probably for music as well.?


Best prices I have on the Anthem are $2600 and $3200 for the Krell. The Anthem has an onboard tuner but doesn't have the mic calibration of the Krell. Otherwise, the appear to be close feature wise. The Krell unit has me continually considering what the hype says..."the Showcase has a Class A stereo preamp built into it". Psychologically, I'd like to finally own something with the Krell name on it. Still, if it doesn't sound better, the $600 can buy me alot of movies, CD and other stuff.


Is the Krell worth the additional $600???


Has anyone directly compared both of these units?
 

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Have you also considered the Integra Research RDC-7 as this seems to be the general competition for the Anthem and the Krell.


I heard the RDC-7 and liked it, I have to still to listen to the Krell and Anthem.
 

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Have you also considered the Integra Research RDC-7
Jon: I'd love to consider this preamp, but the local dealer will not deal so it can not be considered. Do you know any authorized dealer who will sell the 2 year old RDC-7 at under $3K? Apparently, Integra has controlled their dealers so well that they have marketed themselves outta my sale?


Correct me on the Integra if you can... please?
 

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One strike against the Krell is that it is not upgradable (software or hardware). The Anthem is both software and hardware upgradable.


FREAK!
 

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One strike against the Krell is that it is not upgradable (software or hardware). The Anthem is both software and hardware upgradable.
Maybe True. Although the unit does have a RS232 port and already has shown response to CD playback input and update? Probably you are right though... since too much upgrade compatability would lessen the sales of the HTS unit? Good Point!!!
 

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I can't speak for the Anthem, since I haven't heard it -- the local dealer is less than friendly. I did, however, own the Krell Showcase for about two months. My personal opinion is that you should avoid it. I bought it for the same reasons you are mentioning, Krell Name, "class A" preamp...


Unfortunately, once I got it home I was very disappointed. Movie sound was excellent, I can't take anything away from it there.. But using it as a two channel pre-amp yielded sound that I would describe as "Bright", "Thin", "lacking in bass", etc. Certainly detailed, no question there, but it was just not pleasant to listen to. In addition, the ergonomics stink -- the display is virtually useless. The remote is horrific, with it's "membrane" keys that only worked half the time. In addition, if you use it for Cable or satellite and switch between DD 5.1 and other modes, the CLICK is VERY LOUD, slow, and generally annoying. Other pre-pros don't seem to suffer from this.


I have since purchased the Lexicon MC-12, which is obviously in another league. But I have also had the opportunity to listen to the Sunfire Theater Grand III extensively, and can tell you with no reservations that if I started over, I would have purchased the TGIII.


I've heard excellent things about the Anthem, and it would have gotten strong consideration had it not been for the fact that my local dealer is the least professional I have encountered.


Good luck.
 

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Brain so in your opinion is the Sunfire really better than the Lexicon? Going to go to pre/pro within the year and A used MC-12, Anthem, Sunfire are what I'm aiming at.
 

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No, I certainly woudln't go that far. I'm saying in the $3-$5K price range, I think the Sunfire is excellent. That was the price range I was looking at when I started my search for a pre-pro.


My comment was actually, "I can get a Krell for $600MSRP more than an Anthem? How could I not do that?" Obviously, I've learned much since that unfrotunate statement.


The MC-12 is phenomenal in every sense. About as configurable as I have seen, the analog preamp section is phenomenal, and the logic 7 does amazing things with 2 channel sources. But I really wouldn't compare the sunfire and MC-12. I'm simply saying that had I known how good the Sunfire was, I wouldn't have even had to look at a higher price point.
 

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Krell has never been known for their two channel preamps, so I wouldn't buy the hype. They are known much more on the amp-side (althought the new KCT is supposedly very good)


I too considered the Showcase, but the B&K was too good of a deal to pass up for over 1k less.
 

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merc,


Funny that you should ask. I may be the only person who just happens to have both pieces in my Home Theater at the moment. I'm considering the Krell line and I'm already an Anthem dealer. In features and flexibility the Anthem wins hands down. More ins and outs, 2 extra zones and very good upgradeability.


I do prefer the sound of the Krell. It's a bit smoother and more detailed IMHO. I'm using the Krell with a Showcase amp. The AVM 20 is used with an Anthem MCA 50 amplifier. I'll be glad to address specific questions you may have. Regards.
 

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The Krell Showcase is software upgradeable. I have had both the Krell Showcae and Integra RDC-7 in my system recently. I was very impressed with how good the Krell sounded, it has a very large soundstage-great depth and width, and provides a great sense of space. The midrange is slightly laid back, and is extremely detailed and crisp. Diana Krall's voice was truly moving through this unit. As a preamp or doing the decoding, I felt it sounded extremely good, but on poorly recorded, bright material, it can sound bright. The digital equalizer can help with that, I did not have enough time with it to really get the most out of that. Downsides are the small display, and possibly the remote. I did not mind the remote, as I like the fact that it is so small, but some don't like the fact that they don't get a fancy learning remote with it. For reference purposes, the speaker system used was my Nautilus 804/805/HTM2 set, and the amps used were the Classe CAV-150 and the Showcase amp. The full review appears in the next issue of DVD ETC., along with the Integra RDC-7 review. I actually hope to have the Anthem in also one of these days, as well as another couple of processors, but I have not had the Anthem in my system so I cannot comment on a comparison of the two units. Overall, the Krell really sounds good, and I would give it some serious consideration.
 

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What did you think of the RDC-7? How did it compare to the Krell?


Thanks
 

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I actually compare the two units in the magazine review. The Integra is hardware and software upgradeable, and Integra has done multiple upgrades. This is a big plus in the Integra column. The sound quality of the Integra is different, it is kinder, softer, gentler. The soundstage is not as wide as the Krell's, but it does not trip up on bright material either. The detail comes across softly, where the Krell is more dramatic and accentuates midrange detail (can be described as crispness). I personally loved the Krell midrange, it was passionate and dramatic. Choosing between the two is like choosing between Lexus and Mercedes, it's hard to go wrong either way, and you pick by which personality you want.

One of the considerations about the Integra is its size, it is a big unit. It will take up considerably more shelf space and height than the Anthem or the Krell, but on the plus side it looks more imposing as well.
 

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Do not be swayed by claims of Class A pre-amp stage. ALL high quality preamp stages run class A. The only place where class A is important is in power amplifiers ( and class A is not always better than class AB).


Mike S.
 

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Sorry to show my ignorance, but could somebody explain what Class A means.


Thanks
 

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The Anthem is both software and hardware upgradable.
More importantly, Anthem has already demonstrated their willingness and ability by coming through with a hardware upgrade and several software updates. There are lots of products out there that are genuinely upgradeable, but the manufacturers (for whatever reasons) never followed through. Not a big concern for AVM-20 owners, as Anthem now has established history. Personally, I'd pick it over the Krell any day.


Best,

Sanjay
 

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More importantly, Anthem has already demonstrated their willingness and ability by coming through with a hardware upgrade and several software updates. There are lots of products out there that are genuinely upgradeable, but the manufacturers (for whatever reasons) never followed through. Not a big concern for AVM-20 owners, as Anthem now has established history.
Like what they promised and failed to deliver on the AVM-2?


I remember the dealer telling me 7.1 up grade for $250 since boards are modular. DPLII upgrade for minimal cost since it was only firmware.
 

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Originally posted by lwang
Like what they promised and failed to deliver on the AVM-2?
No, like what they promised and delivered for the processor being discussed in this thread.


It's interesting that you didn't (or couldn't) actually criticize the upgrade history of the AVM-20; instead you had to reach back into Anthem's past and bring up a discontinued product in your attempt to disparage their current pre-pro. Which begs the question: why are you going through the trouble to do that? No more sport in slamming Lexicon products? :)


Best,

Sanjay
 

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Not a big concern for AVM-20 owners, as Anthem now has established history.
As you described, you said they have an established history, but the history of anthem processors includes the AVM-2, which encompasses a bigger part of their history.


I am bringing this up because a while ago, I was looking at the AVM-2 and the dealer gave me that hype about its upgradability.


Even my Meridian 565 processor, which has been discontinued for a while, still had its firmware upgraded by versions that came out much after the product's end of life.
 
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