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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I currently have a Rotel RTC-965 pre-amp (DD,DTS, 5.1,Tuner) and I've recently purchased a Denon DVD-1600 (to replace a Tosh 3109). I have Paradigm Ref 60's, CC, and ADP's powered by a Rotel RB-985 MK II (5x110) amp and a Hsu Research Sub. I use a Tosh TW40x81 for display and also have an XBox.


The Rotel 965 doesn't have analog 5.1 inputs, so I can't connect the analog outs for DVD-Audio. Bummer. The 965 is connected to the amp with a DB-25 cable, so the amp has free RCA plugs. Should I also connect the analog outs on the DVD-1600 to these? How would I then connect the sub?


Is there some way to connect everything with just a switchbox or something for when I want DVD-Audio? Or should I get a new Pre?


I probably use it about 70% for HT and 30% music, although the Xbox has really eaten into that 70%. I like the fact that the tuner is there, but I have only used it once.


This is not a big deal, but the TV only has two sets of component inputs and when I've tested the HTPC concept, I have to disconnect the Xbox. Any ideas?


This is my first HT, and the first upgrade to it, so I don't have a lot of experience to draw on. Any help is appreciated.


Regards,
 

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OmegaZ:


There are a couple of options....


First though, using a switchbox to toggle between the existing preamp and the DV-1600 for DVD-Audio doesn't work because there is no volume control on the DV-1600 -- you have only one volume level, probably way too loud.



You can sell your existing preamp and purchase a new one. You would gain 5.1 inputs, and get things like DPL-2, and DTS-ES among other things.


The other option to consider would be the Sony TA-P9000ES which is a 6 channel analog preamp only. You would plug the Rotel outputs to the 6 channel passthrough input, the DV-1600 outputs to one of the variable inputs for DVD-A/SACD and finally the P9000 outputs to the amplifier. The TA-P9000ES sells for about US$450 at Oade Bros. You'd also have a boatload of cables :(


Hope this helped.


Regards,
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Thanks John. I should've figured out that I wouldn't have a volume control. Any recommendations on preamps? What about 7.1? How useful is it? Probably better for a large room- mine's only about 15x20. I'd also need a new 2 channel amp. The real cost of implementing the analog pre-amp is about $700, since there's an additional $250 in cables. This copy protection stuff stinks.
 

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With my penchant for large Planar speakers, I barely have room for 5.1, let alone 6.1 with dual speakers ;)


Officially there is no 7.1 encoded material, only 6.1 with two speakers :D


Anyway -- I can't help you with the cost of cables -- and yes, copyprotection stinks.


Regards,
 

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OMEGA.

Your not correct, the RTC-965 DOES have 5.1 analog inputs. It's the Computer looking connector in the back. You will have to get a RCA TO DB25 cable. Monster cable made one.


Joe
 

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I haven't had a chance to listen to one yet, but Arcam came out with a new 7 channel pre-amp, the AV8.


I'm currently using their 5 channel receiver, AVR-200 and have been happy with it. I look forward to hearing the new one. It has three component inputs if I'm not mistaken.


Check it out here:

http://www.arcam.co.uk/fmj/products/av8.html


It is a bit pricey, however, but I'm of the belief that you should spend more money on the front end of your system than the back end. When I went to seperates from using the AVR-200 for 2 channel music, I was amazed at the difference you get between pre-amps. Made my old crappy speakers sound good.


Good luck!


Mike
 

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Hi Mokeefe - I am pleased you are happy with your AVR200.


The AV8 is a lot more money but arguably as good in value terms. It's a full THX Ultra2 certified processor for home theatre use and it's a b----y good analogue preamp too. For 2 channel analogue sources it can be used in a special direct mode (there's a button on the front to select this) which not only keeps the signals entirely on the analogue board but shuts down all the DSPs too - and yes you can hear the difference.


Each input remembers how you defined its set up from the last time and there are 5 system presets too, so you can optimise one for say movies, another for CDs, another for TV drama, a fourth for sport and so on. It has 3 component video inputs as stated - these can display an OSD which does not degrade the picture in interlaced mode and have 300 MHz bandwidth for HDTV.


We have just started shipping and I believe samples should be in the USA within 3 - 4 weeks.


HTH.


John Dawson (Arcam)
 

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Quote:
Originally posted by John Dawson
Hi Mokeefe - I am pleased you are happy with your AVR200.


The AV8 is a lot more money but arguably as good in value terms. It's a full THX Ultra2 certified processor for home theatre use and it's a b----y good analogue preamp too. For 2 channel analogue sources it can be used in a special direct mode (there's a button on the front to select this) which not only keeps the signals entirely on the analogue board but shuts down all the DSPs too - and yes you can hear the difference.


Each input remembers how you defined its set up from the last time and there are 5 system presets too, so you can optimise one for say movies, another for CDs, another for TV drama, a fourth for sport and so on. It has 3 component video inputs as stated - these can display an OSD which does not degrade the picture in interlaced mode and have 300 MHz bandwidth for HDTV.


We have just started shipping and I believe samples should be in the USA within 3 - 4 weeks.


HTH.


John Dawson (Arcam)
John,


Can you elaborate on the features of the new AV8? There is just not much information on the AV8 page, things like what kind of music surround mode it offers, type of Dacs, DSPs it uses, types of analog outputs (balanced output?), and digital outputs (independent remote zone digital out?)....


I know of a few current forum members that are looking for new HT pro with music reproduction as the first priority.
 

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Hi Mike - I don't have time to go into all of this but I'll try to answer a few points. Having said that there is no substitute for trying out these units, though I know how much organising that takes as we're doing it for UK dealers right now.


The DSPs are from the Crystal 493xx family - two of them - with double precision calculations for bass management and the like. The DACs are 24 bit from the UK company Wolfson and are multibit sigma delta types with differential outputs and a s/noise ratio of around 117 dB (which is very good!) and very low distortion. We use them at 44.1, 48 and 96 kHz in this design. There is a broadcast standard A/D from AKM as well, running at up to 96 kHz, for converting any analogue signals to digital, e.g. for tone controls (which can be applied in M/C to all 7 channels BTW) or DPL II or music modes. Note there is also a full analogue bypass mode for 2 channel, which turns off the DSPs (you can hear this).


The digital inputs can run up to 96kHz IIRC and are reclocked for very low jitter with a proprietory crystal controlled PLL (phase locked loop).


There are several music modes for 2 channel, which we spent a lot of time tuning ourselves. They are called Music (extracted ambience and centre information), Party (all speakers on), Club (small room) Hall (medium reverberation), Sport (very reverberant with extracted ambience and dry centre dialogue) and Church (long reverberant room). We think that's enough :) Obviously there is DPL II, with full control, and DTS Neo 6 too.


A very nice feature is the 5 system presets, which can each snapshot the state of the entire system and reproduce it later at a touch of a button. There's a backlit learning remote bundled with the AV8 and a full list of Pronto codes plus RS232 for Crestron control etc.


There is no balanced output, but a lot of care has been taken to minimise ground loops with proper star earthing and an active ground for the comms lines between boards. There's a system ground lift too. The AV8 design is modular BTW.


There is full zone 2 support for 2 channel plus composite video (including an OSD for zone 2). Thereis no zone 2 digital output however as that has big complications with 5.1 channel sources, as you legally must have a 2 channel down mix for zone 2 and that would need another system DSP. Thanks, but no thanks! Instead we recommend you feed zone 2 signals to the AV8 in 2 channel analogue, which all our digital sources have in addition to a digital output. This is a good argument for not having a "digital output only" DVD player or CD player BTW.


That's enough for now - I hope that whets your appetite :)


John Dawson (Arcam)
 
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