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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Here's my scenario...


1. Xbox, cable box

2. HDTV

3. 5.1 surround speakers


I know I can get some humongous receiver with 4 million useless phono plugs on it to handle the audio/video, but I really don't want to do that. I just want a very clean, minimal front to back HDMI solution.


Does such a beast exist in one box? If not, I guess I need:


1. HDMI switch (like Octavia)

2. Some kind of surround pre/pro

3. Some kind of integrated amp


But I really want to stay full HDMI, and I guess optical into the amp.... Any help would be greatly appreciated.



BTW - don't need tons of power - 100W/channel @4 ohms is plenty
 

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You are likely going to have to live with having a number of analog inputs in the back of a receiver, but the lower-end ones usually don't have a lot. You don't have to use them. EDIT: I'm not sure I'd want to run 4 ohm speakers off the cheapest receivers.
 

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Budget?


A receiver would probably be the best option, hooked to a 3 or 5 channel amp. For under a grand, you can get a upper range Pioneer with pre-outs and a 3 or 5 channel Emotiva amp. This Kyle give you all the features you need like calibration, HDMI, streaming, etc, while still having adequate power.


When the receiver technology gets old, you can upgrade the receiver but keep the amp, saving money instead of dropping top $$ on a hgih end receiver
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Thanks guys....


Budget is around $1K. I can't crank my system in this apt anyway so I don't need the best. I currently have a Denon 3803 and other than it being ancient and not having HDMI support, it's fine. (well that and it's a boat anchor)


Octava makes a 5x2 HDMI splitter (below) that has TOSLINK:

http://www.octavainc.com/HDMI%20swit...2_toslink.html


I would think I could find something to take the optical out, provide the 5.1 capability, then send that to an integrated amp.


So basically... Xbox (HDMI) -> Octava (TOSLINK) -> surround proc (TOSLINK) -> integrated amp. I still can't believe there isn't an integrated amp with 5.1 and an optical input...that just seems too obvious. :/


And yes, I know that that is called a "receiver", but again, I don't need 50% of what a receiver offers, e.g., radio, a million different types of inputs, etc. But I think I might be stuck with the boat anchor...again...unless someone comes up with an alternative.


TIA.
 

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Quote:
I still can't believe there isn't an integrated amp with 5.1 and an optical input..

there is. You own one already -- it's name is "Denon 3803"



you are having a difficult time explaining yourself, I don't know what you want that you don't already have. Your current Denon has multiple digital audio inputs, a pre/pro section, and an amplifier, all built into one box.


If you want to combine the above functionality with HDMI inputs, all in one box, then get a newer receiver. As Kal said, that's what receivers are, there isn't any other alternative.


If you want a powerful HDMI receiver without as much complexity as the most modern units, get a higher-end but slightly older unit which won't have networking, GUI, video processing, etc. Something like this .
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Thanks.... ok, I'll try to be more clear - hopefully this makes more sense...


The only inputs/ouputs I want in my end to end system are HDMI and TOSLINK. I don't want component, svideo, composite, or any analog audio, which creates the boat anchor I'm trying to avoid. I also don't need a radio or other extraneous muck.


Just need to route the A/V signal from my xbox and cable box using HDMI, and then have ability/power to drive the 5.1 speakers....


Hopefully that's clearer
(not being snarky btw - genuinely trying to be clearer
 

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it doesn't exist. There is no "HDMI/toslink only" receiver/integrated out there.


Just get an HDMI receiver and DON'T USE the inputs and features you don't need



A "slimline" receiver like the Marantz NR1601 will have limited non-HDMI inputs, and may work fine for your setup.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by goombawa /forum/post/19627001


Thanks.... ok, I'll try to be more clear - hopefully this makes more sense...


The only inputs/ouputs I want in my end to end system are HDMI and TOSLINK. I don't want component, svideo, composite, or any analog audio, which creates the boat anchor I'm trying to avoid. I also don't need a radio or other extraneous muck.


Just need to route the A/V signal from my xbox and cable box using HDMI, and then have ability/power to drive the 5.1 speakers....


Hopefully that's clearer
(not being snarky btw - genuinely trying to be clearer

You are perfectly clear. Now, let me attempt to do the same.


What you want can be done by cobbling together a number of boxes and cables but their total cost and bulk will greatly exceed that of an equivalent single AV receiver. And that price differential is due to the large market for AVRs which drives down costs.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Thanks... well, that, simply put, just sucks.



I can't believe that after years of A/V devices going to HMDI that no one has created a box with just those inputs/outputs (and optical for the amp) I mean, I understand the legacy issues with phone plugs, etc., but for people who don't have that baggage there should be a clean, simple solution.


Someday I guess....



Still, on the "number" of boxes...would it just be three? The HDMI switch, surround pre/pro and the amp? I know that might sound more bulky than a single A/V but for me it's not. I prefer to have a clean digital system vs. wasting space on crap that I will never use like banks of phono plugs and svideo...
 

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Quote:
well, that, simply put, just sucks.

not really, maybe in "exaggerate-o-land". What the heck is so wrong with getting an HDMI receiver and simply NOT USING the stuff you don't need?


Quote:
I can't believe that after years of A/V devices going to HMDI that no one has created a box with just those inputs/outputs (and optical for the amp)

this sort of highlights the absurdity of issue, you have a very specific set of requirements, you want HDMI switching ONLY ... but oh yeah, throw in an optical input. Maybe somebody wants ONLY HDMI and also wants one component video input for his Wii.. and he's like, "that sucks, why has nobody made EXACTLY what I need?"


Do you think in any way it would be cost effective for manufacturers to make such specific, target products? As opposed to an AV receiver, which can do all of the above, and you simply use what you need and don't use what you don't!


finally, what the heck does "optical for the amp" mean? are you talking about -- output to an amplifier? no amplifier takes an optical input.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by goombawa /forum/post/19627304


Still, on the "number" of boxes...would it just be three? The HDMI switch, surround pre/pro and the amp? I know that might sound more bulky than a single A/V but for me it's not. I prefer to have a clean digital system vs. wasting space on crap that I will never use like banks of phono plugs and svideo...

Like everyone has been saying, just get a receiver with HDMI and Pre-outs, and if you feel the need for more power (or feel that an integrated amp is cleaner, etc), hook up an amp to the receiver. So, two pieces total, not 3. A receiver is pretty much a "surround pre/pro".


I recommend something like this:

Emotiva XPA-3 ($529), UPA-5 ($429), or the UPA-2 ($329), depending on your needs (the XPA-3 would probably be the best choice - hook up the front three speakers to the XPA-3, and the surround speakers to the receiver).


Pair that with a Pioneer VSX-1120 ($550) or a Harman Kardon AVR-354 ( $505 ) and you're set!


OR - just get the receiver first (make sure it has pre-outs), and if you find that it's not powerful enough, add the amp later.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by goombawa /forum/post/19627304


Still, on the "number" of boxes...would it just be three? The HDMI switch, surround pre/pro and the amp? I know that might sound more bulky than a single A/V but for me it's not. I prefer to have a clean digital system vs. wasting space on crap that I will never use like banks of phono plugs and svideo...

AFAIK, you cannot buy a "surround pre/pro" without all the extra features you abjure. Also, I do not see why the issue of "clean" enters into this at all.


Finally, the reason this product does not exist is that there is such a puny demand for it.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by blackzarg /forum/post/0



Like everyone has been saying, just get a receiver with HDMI and Pre-outs, and if you feel the need for more power (or feel that an integrated amp is cleaner, etc), hook up an amp to the receiver. So, two pieces total, not 3. A receiver is pretty much a "surround pre/pro".


I recommend something like this:

Emotiva XPA-3 ($529), UPA-5 ($429), or the UPA-2 ($329), depending on your needs (the XPA-3 would probably be the best choice - hook up the front three speakers to the XPA-3, and the surround speakers to the receiver).


Pair that with a Pioneer VSX-1120 ($550) or a Harman Kardon AVR-354 ( $505 ) and you're set!


OR - just get the receiver first (make sure it has pre-outs), and if you find that it's not powerful enough, add the amp later.

You can get the 1120 for much less than $550...
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Ok, for all those who can't fathom the idea of only having HDMI/optical input/outputs, consider this:


When you buy/obtain a new...


...DVD/Bluray player, how do you connect it?

...Xbox/PS3, how do you connect it?

...AppleTV, how do you connect it?

...cable/sat box, how do you connect it?

...PVR, how do you connect it?


Analog audio? Composite? S-Video? Component?


Unless you have no HDMI ports available, you connect via HDMI because that is the easiest, best way to do so. So I fail to see how in this day and age asking for an HDMI only "receiver" is so far fetched.


Sure, if you have cassette decks, turntables, an Atari 2600, etc., you need older inputs. So, fine, offer models that have tons of those old ports. But in today's world, show me an example where I would build a new system (no legacy stuff) using anything but HDMI/optical in/outs.
 

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Seriously you are b*tching about too much connectivity?



Sorry no one cares to hear you rant. Besides not everyone has switched to HDMI only inputs.


I had to wait 2 months to get and HDMI cable box so thanks I'll take my receiver with component video hook up.


Oh and what if I want to play Wii? That outputs over RCA
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·

Quote:
Originally Posted by crazyrob425 /forum/post/19628789


Oh and what if I want to play Wii? That outputs over RCA

That's 4 year old technology and is the exception to the rule. But anyway, in that case you'd either not buy the box I'm talking about, or you would and get one of these for the one thing that doesn't fit the system:

http://www.hdtvsupply.com/component-...i-adapter.html


Otherwise my point still stands - any modern A/V device you buy today outputs HDMI/optical, so why not have a box that only accepts HDMI/optical.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by goombawa /forum/post/19628851


Otherwise my point still stands - any modern A/V device you buy today outputs HDMI/optical, so why not have a box that only accepts HDMI/optical.

Meridian 861 V6 + HD621. Select only those input & output cards that you actually need. Oh yeah, you do have $25,000, right?


AJ
 
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