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Discussion Starter #1
should be a great unit. Some initial information:


http://www.htguide.com/forum/showpos...25&postcount=5
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After a 15 year hiatus the B&W Group has once again put a display booth on the CES floor. Unfortunately, all they are showcasing is B&W based products. The most popular attraction being the Jaguar demo followed by the Classe' powered Liberty system. Therefore, there won't be any photos of Classe' only equipment to share. However, there are some other very surprising things to talk about. Pay close attention Minardi2.

Delta Series Updates


The SSP-800 is poised to be a killer product. Recent economic shifts within the high-end AV community has given Classe' an opportunity to seize the moment. They are still on target to release the processor to manufacturing in March with product availability planned for April. However, they are nolonger prepared to offer it at the $10K - $12K price point. Instead they are shooting for an $8K price tag! That's right $8000 dollars.


In the midst of all the recent price increases coming out of corporate, I never saw this coming nor would have I expected it. While no decisions have been made they are reviewing the prospects of a trade-up program, but don't get your hopes up. Given the new price margin it may not be financial feasible but they are considering the possibilities.


The DSP will be an upgradeable MDS DAE-7 module which is based on the TI Aureus processor chip. Unlike other DAE kits all of the DSP support architecture and circuitry including power supplies, ADCs and DACs are engineered by Classe'. The DAE-7 will not support the decoding of the high-definition audio codecs like Dolby Digital Plus and TrueHD and DTS-HD HRA and MA but it will support all the standard audio codecs and multi-channel LPCM. HDMI 1.3a is included as is support for Deep Color video.


Classe's supplier of the DSP's could not make a solid commitment to produce a high-definition compatible module in time for the SSP's launch. Later when MDS makes an upgrade available that supports the new codecs Classe' may offer it to their customer's for no extra charge. Classe' is expecting something later this year, perhaps in the fall sometime but it's still up in the air.


Then again they may not offer the upgrade at all. There are a number of dependencies as to why. One such factor is due to the high-definition formats specification that all decoding take place on the player. Time will tell but the lack of SSP onboard decoding should not be viewed as a deal breaker for anyone. Sony and Toshiba designed it that way!


The SSP-800 will not include a self-calibrating parametric equalizer but will include manual equalization that will require third-part support. Classe' evaluated the popular Audysse MultEQ and found that its inconsistent results made it an inadequate option to include in the next generation processor. Therefore, room correction features are accessible but geared to those that are less timid and well initiated.


Two-channel and multi-channel audio performance is claimed to be the best to date to come out of Classe's development programs.


There are still a few SSP questions that I hope to have an answer for soon so stay tuned. There will be more to come later regarding high-definition players, and the future development of the Delta and Omega Series lines as well. I'm just too tired to report it all at this time. Sorry.
http://www.htguide.com/forum/showpos...1&postcount=72
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The SSP-800 is going to be one helluva high-performance machine for both two-channel music and multi-channel movie sources. The processor has been designed to use up to 10 layer PCBs which will provide better isolation between power and ground planes and will reduce potentially harmful interference thus improving signal integrity. There is a linear relationship between multi-layers and increasing costs but the net result will be much better performance. I have been told that the internal board layouts are stunning but this information may only matter to gear heads like myself. However, it should be understood that board design is crucial to squeezing out the most from the electric circuits and accompanying components but many people do not know this. It's this kind of attention to detail plus the combination of component choices and implementations that make all the difference in the world between SSPs.


The DAE-7 upgradeable module used in the SSP-800 is capable of supporting the optional THX Ultra 2 post-processing feature set but I have yet to confirm from Classe' that they will implement it. The DAE-7 also supports Dolby Pro Logic IIx; DPLIIx was missing in the first generation of SSPs. Another missing feature of the 1Gs that should also make it into the SSP-800 is dts-96/24.


Other than these and other previously posted technical aspects, what makes the SSP-800 a potential kick-ass product? One word, Proceed! Anyone familiar with the legacy of the Mark Levinson processors and Proceed AVPs knows how important a statement this is. The Proceed AVP2 is still recognized to this day as being one of the best if not the best processor that has been made. While the SSP-600 that Classe' produced can go toe-to-toe with the AVP2 the SSP-800 will deliver the knock out punch. Why? Because the principle engineer behind the ML and Proceed processors is part of the Classe' Design Team that built the SSP-800 from the ground up to be the best processor ever made. The SSP-600 already carries some of the ML/Proceed heritage but the SSP-800 is a direct descendant from the ML/Proceed gene pool and is the culmination of its prized legacy. When you consider the SSP-800 is the combination of Classe's prowess for high-performance stereo and bequeathed ML/Proceed multi-channel surround sound genetics, but better, you have yourself one helluva high-performance machine!


In the past Classe' has been pretty tight lipped about their plans for an HD player. But in recent weeks shifts in the format war have put Classe' into a position where they can begin to make some decisions about it going forward. While Classe' doesn't know whether they will build an HD player they do know they will make a decision about it within the next six months. Classe' is not interested nor are they willing to re-brand an HD player just to have one in their arsenal. They believe such a choice would compromise what they are all about so they just won't do it. They have a deep passion to better the existing and if making it better can't be done or if it would be to costly to do it then they won't attempt it. Classe' has formed strategic partnerships to assist in their goals of taking high-end audio to the next level and such would be the case with an HD player. If the potential investment they make can be amortized over the life cycle of a product and a profit realized while achieving the desired design goal of the product then Classe' will build an HD player, otherwise they won't. Classe' is currently working with it's partners to determine the feasibility of building a high-performance HD player and if it's doable then we should know some time later in the year.


As for the Omega Series it will be discontinued. The Omega SACD player and pre-amplifier have already been dismissed. No further SACD development or product releases will occur for either the Omega or Delta lines. For the time being Classe' is focused on filling out and improving their Delta Series line-up so no attention to the Omega Series will be paid at present. However, long term plans includes a new vision for the Omega line which will no longer be titled as such. Instead the Omega name will be reincarnated into something else yet to be determined. Development efforts for the new line are on hold until then as the team continue's to channel their efforts on the Delta Series.
http://www.hometheaterhifi.com/volum...7-page-15.html
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Classé has caught up with the reset of the processors in terms of HDMI. The SSP-800 which will ship in the somewhat near future will support HDMI 1.3 with 4 inputs and 2 outputs. It will support OSD on all video signals including 1080p and will support 36-bit color. While it will not support scaling of the video signals it will switch them and pull off the audio which is the part we consider to be the most important. And it keeps the cool screen in the front.
 

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So what will it do for $8000 that other SSP not do except NOT have video scaling.


Gene
 

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Discussion Starter #3

Quote:
Originally Posted by nethomas /forum/post/12875690


So what will it do for $8000 that other SSP not do except NOT have video scaling.


Gene

oh nothing really......just something called AUDIO QUALITY
 

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And that's based on???


Gene
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Gene....what exactly is your purpose on this thread? If you are not interested on the classe, why are you posting here?


ps- Oh, and it is based on CLasse's previous processors, as well as their engineering design team which created the Proceed AVP2, arguably one of the best processors made to date.
 

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Sherv,


Thanks for posting the information on the SSP-800. I have always been interested in Classe' products and almost purchased one of their amps last year, but decided to spend less on amplification and put the balance into another SSP.


I would think considering your current setup, the Classe' would be very high on your list or "The Processor" you may want after auditioning. B and W and Classe' after reading many threads on the HTguide site seem to be an excellent match. Thanks again..


Charles
 

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Wow...I still use an original Proceed AVP. I'm in the same dilemma that plagues a lot of us that considering the SSP-800. I'm starting to really need HDMI and analog video inputs that are actually usable. (composite and s-video don't seem to cut it anymore, lol!) Plus, I want that product to sound as least as good as my AVP, which is actually a really hard thing to do.


I'm excited about the SSP-800, but even at $8,000 we're still looking at a lot of change. The Proceed AVP (and even the later AVP2) were both under $6,000. In all fairness, that was years ago but still... And just to think that Classe originally wanted to charge even more money for the SSP-800.

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I'm surprised they didn't include any scaling! Think I'll stick with my AVM-50... for now.

And how badly do you really NEED scaling? Maybe it's just me, but someone with the means to afford an $8,000 processor has probably already dismissed SD-based sources in favor of HDTV and Blu-ray anyway. Obviously, those sources don't need to be scaled (assuming your display device is 1920x1080). Besides, there's only so much you can do to a crappy 480i broadcast signal going into a full 1080p digital TV (garbage in, garbage out).



I even saw someone on another forum (I forget which one) who complained that the SSP-800 does not do TrueHD or DTS-HD MA. Maybe it's just me, but just about EVERY SINGLE Blu-ray disc I've encountered has an uncompressed PCM 5.1 soundtrack on it (which the SSP-300 WILL do over L-PCM). I'll take the original studio master, thank you.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by xtrmspl /forum/post/12877949


I'm surprised they didn't include any scaling!

Me too. I think the market is ripe for Denon PreAmp competitors. I'll be graduating to an SC09-TX as a PreAmp with so few competitors in the upper range with stability & modern features.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
some additional information:


============================================================ =

The SSP-800 is engineered from the ground up by the Classe' Design Team that built the acclaimed SSP-600 and by the principle engineer that brought the Proceed AVP2/AVP2+6 and the cost no object Mark Levinson Nº40 Media Console to market. The AVP2/AVP2+6 is recognized as one of the best processors ever made inheriting much if not most of the Nº40 Media Console's DNA. The SSP-800 result’s from the ultimate culmination of talents between Classe' engineering and Proceed/Mark Levinson heritage. The SSP-800 makes no compromises and is the evolutionary next step in high-performance multi-channel audio for both analog and digital sources.


(Note: The AVP2+6 originally retailed for $6,895 and the Nº40 Media Console $30,000, circa 2002.)


Availability: March/April

Price: Originally $10,000 -12,000 NOW $8000!

DSP: Momentum Data Systems DAE-7 Upgradable Module

- Texas Instruments Aureus DA610/TMS320C6713 Chip


(The upgradable module would support the advanced audio CODECs.)

ADCs: TBD

DACs: TBD

Op-Amps: TBD

Digital Filters: TBD

Power Supplies: TBD

CODECS: Dolby Digital, Dolby Digital EX, Dolby Pro Logic IIx, dts, dts-ES Matrix, dts-ES Discrete, dts Neo:6 2CH, dts 96 kHz/24 Bit, MCH LPCM 96 kHz/24 Bit, Plus other custom modes similar to those available in the current SSPs. (NO THX Post Processing)


(Potentially: Dolby Digital Plus, Dolby TrueHD, dts-HD HDA and MA)


- Optional +10 dB boost added to each MCH LPCM.

- Trim compensation features available for early DTS music recordings.

- Multiple configurations to level settings and manage bass engaged manually, by input or stream type.

PEQ: Manual, 5 Bands Per Channel

Audio Inputs Analog


8 RCA: 7.1 Analog bypass ONLY.

4 RCA: 2.0 Analog bypass OR digital conversion.

2 XLR: 2.0 Analog bypass OR digital conversion.

Audio Inputs Digital


4 S/PDIF - Optical

4 S/PDIF - Coaxial

4 HDMI 1.3a (True HDMI repeater. Audio extracted from the inputs and put onto the outputs.)

Audio Outputs Analog


10 RCA: L, R, C, SW, SL, SR, RL, RR, AUX1, AUX2

10 XLR: L, R, C, SW, SL, SR, RL, RR, AUX1, AUX2


AUX1 and AUX2 can be used for…

- Extra subwoofers in a 7.3 configuration. OR

- L&R subwoofers in a 7.1 configuration. OR

- Bi-amping the L&R channels. OR

- Fixed use in another room.

Audio Outputs Digital


N/A

Video Inputs


2 S-Video*

2 Composite*

2 Component*

4 HDMI 1.3a (36-Bit Deep Color Support)


*Analog video inputs are digitally converted. Switching, transcoding and conversions into analog are appropriately facilitated.

Video Outputs


1 Component

2 HDMI 1.3a (36-Bit Deep Color Support)

On Screen Display Overlay Supports all resolutions up to 1080p for both the built-in LCD and the main display screens.

Control Ports: IR IN & OUT, TRIGGER OUT1 & OUT2, USB, RS-232, CANBUS IN & OUT

Foot Print: Same chassis as used by the current SSP-600.

2CH Performance: Claimed to be the best yet from the Delta Series.

MCH Performance: Claimed to be the best available from anyone, anywhere.

============================================================ ==
http://www.htguide.com/forum/showpos...53&postcount=1
 

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It's not that you NEED scaling, it's just a nice added feature at this price point. It makes integration of video sources easier.
 

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I am puzzled by Classe's exclusion of HBR decoders, notwithstanding the discussions on HT Guide Forum (which are basically repeats of the "Why you don't need HDMI 1.3" arguments) and the statement that they will make an official announcement about HBR on release. If Onkyo can use the TI Aureus for HBR, why can't Classe? It was my understanding the implementation of TrueHD & DTS-HD MA was COTS software... It seems to buck the SSP market direction, which definitely is trending towards including HBR decoders. And if you look at the AVR market, trend isn't the word, its a wholesale adoption of HBR decoders.


Doing some research, I notice that Classe is using the Momentum Data Systems prepackaged OEM DSP board using the older chipset (DA610), while the latest chipset Onkyo uses is the DA710 which supports HBR decoders. So I surmise the issue is that Onkyo did its own integration of the DSP directly while Classe has to await the OEM board from Momentum. In essence Classe is depending on an OEM to integrate the DSP and thus is schedule constrained by that supplier.
 

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A Classe company rep informed me yesterday that the SSP-800 will be released in late June, instead of April or May, due to further testing. Anyone know how the SSP-600 compares to the Krell S-1000, as to which has better audio for home theater and more flexibility?
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by rudolpht /forum/post/13011003


Me too. I think the market is ripe for Denon PreAmp competitors. I'll be graduating to an SC09-TX as a PreAmp with so few competitors in the upper range with stability & modern features.

In looking for a quality pre/pro I have looked at all that are available including consideration of a wait for the SSP-800, but it is lacking decoding features that are presently available on modern pre/pros and it does not appear certain that Classe' will include them later as an upgrade and if that happens, what the approx. cost will be.


Then, I had hoped that Pioneer would simply remove the pre/pro portion of the SC09-TX from the amps since they could easily do that and bring out a standalone pre/pro that could match anything out there and probably anything to come. To compliment my McIntosh amps, I have considered using the SC09-TX as a pre/pro -- HOW WELL does it work with its amps disabled and using only the pre/pro functions with your own amps -- I know that some McIntosh owners have done this too but am curious as to your impressions of the SC09-TX.


(apologies to the OP for a slightly off-topic post)


MikeSp
 

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Any new news on this unit? Is it still set to launch in May? I'm really interested in this piece and can't wait. Does anyone know how much it will weigh? Thanks...


Ralph
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by MikeSp /forum/post/13468281


I know that some McIntosh owners have done this too but am curious as to your impressions of the SC09-TX.


(apologies to the OP for a slightly off-topic post)


MikeSp

Mike,


I hope to tell you in a couple weeks
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by rudolpht /forum/post/13627102


Mike,


I hope to tell you in a couple weeks

I look forward to your observations!!!! Good luck


MikeSp
 

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Official information already posted on http://www.classeaudio.com/ and "leaflet" (May, 15).

Quote:
Modern source components are increasingly optimized for use with digital interconnections and the SSP-800 capitalizes on this trend. Older surround processors are typically equipped with a vast array of analog inputs. These have been minimized in the SSP-800 and largely replaced by digital connectors. Four HDMI 1.3a (High Definition Multimedia Interface) inputs for audio/video sources are supplemented by standard SPDIF (coax) and EIAJ (optical) digital inputs for audio. HDMI is the connection standard adopted for high definition A/V sources. An HDMI cable may carry 1080p HD video signals and uncompressed multichannel LPCM digital audio as well as the latest HD audio codecs (Dolby TrueHD and DTS-HD Master Audio) and certain control signals. Several versions of HDMI have been introduced, each surpassing the other in bandwidth and support for additional features. While the hardware used to transmit and receive on HDMI may be labeled by its version number (the SSP-800 uses version 1.3a for all HDMI inputs and outputs), there will be differences among products' actual capabilities.


The SSP-800 uses HDMI 1.3a primarily to support the component's long life in an evolving market. As new sources emerge, the SSP-800 offers the potential for transferring more information into and through its circuitry. For example, the video signal path supports 36-bit Deep Color video, even though Blu-ray Discs are only 24-bit video sources. In general, the bandwidth of components and circuitry in the SSP-800 is sufficient to accommodate all current and proposed next-generation AV sources.
Classe SSP-800 Leaflet
 
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