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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi all-
Currently, I have an Emotiva UMC-1 with XPA-5 (Salk speakers and PSA sealed Sub). This is in a room with a very large opening to other rooms and a large patio door.
It is a given that the UMC-1 is a hit or a miss. It has HDMI sync issues with some of my streaming devices and other minor annoyances. But, overall, the sound is good, when it all works.
One thing that I have been thinking about is, if I do a very good room correction done, maybe, I can extract more out of my system. EmoQ is nothing to write home about. I'm thinking about the following options:
1. Get rid of UMC-1 and get a Anthem MRX-510 instead. That way, I'll get ARC, but, in terms of sound, not sure if this is an upgrade at all. Plus, I think this will get rid of my HDMI sync issues and will also get better video pass through. (Using Anthem just as a pre-pro with Emo XPA-5).
-or-
2. For now, get a good calibration mic, and play around with REW. With REW, can I eq my speakers as well as my sub? How does REW compare with ARC/other room correction after tuning?

Thoughts?

thanks!
 

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Really Anthem? You have to use ARC as your room correction software name? Really?

Most people on here salivate about Audessey in terms of room correction. Do you have any information that the proprietary Anthem room correction, which looks to be pretty new to them, would be better than the Emotiva solution? Have you looked at any Denon or Marantz models?
 

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The Anthem MRX-510 is a really solid AVR, and it will likely solve your HDMI handshake issues that you have with your UMC-1. Howver, anthem does have a few hdmi handshake issues, its just the nature of the beast. Almost everyone does with some brands. Anthem (and many others) has big issues with Apple products. I would not say that the Anthem is a better sounding unit if the same room correction filters are placed on the MRX-510 and the UMC-1. I would say they are about equal.... this is my opinion and I've had both Anthem MRX and UMC-1 in my room.

With the Anthem you are spending money on internal amps that you won't use since you have the XPA-5. While Anthem's ARC will be an improvement over Emo-Q, if you are going to drop between $1000-$1500 on a new processors or AVR, I would strongly suggest staying with Emotiva and buying the XMC-1. I had the Anthem MRX-710 in my room and for an AVR it was one of the best sounding AVR's at that price point. But compared to my old UMC-1 and XPR-2/XPA-5 combo, it didn't better that combo. The Anthem does have a few more 'features', but it did not have a better sound.

IMO, the XMC-1 is a drastic sound improvement from the UMC-1. Channel separation is crazy good and the sound stage with 2-channel is amazing. Add to that Dirac LE, and you have an amazing room correction software that is as good or is better than Anthem's ARC and in my opinion makes even the best version of Audessey seem bush league. Again, I've used Audessey, Emo-Q, Dirac, and ARC and these are my perceptions.

If you didn't have the XPA-5, then I would be more torn between recommending the 510 or the XMC-1. But with the XPA already in your rack, I feel this is a no brainer and the XMC-1 with Dirac LE is the best option by far.
 

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2. For now, get a good calibration mic, and play around with REW. With REW, can I eq my speakers as well as my sub? How does REW compare with ARC/other room correction after tuning?
REW is only a measurement tool, it will not EQ anything on it's own (although it will generate and output EQ filters based on your frequency response graphs to your preferred external EQ device). You need a MiniDSP or similar to do the actual EQ'ing.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
REW is only a measurement tool, it will not EQ anything on it's own (although it will generate and output EQ filters based on your frequency response graphs to your preferred external EQ device). You need a MiniDSP or similar to do the actual EQ'ing.
Yes. Once I can get the measurements, I thought I can use that to manually EQ each channel in the UMC-1.
 

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^^^

As far as I can tell, that pre/pro only has the built in Auto EQ and tone controls, there is certainly not a PEQ that would allow you to manually EQ.
 

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Really Anthem? You have to use ARC as your room correction software name? Really?
Why not? Anthem Room Correction makes perfect sense as a name for, well, Anthem's room correction software.

Most people on here salivate about Audessey in terms of room correction.
Nope.

Do you have any information that the proprietary Anthem room correction,
There's plenty out there, if you care to look.

which looks to be pretty new to them,
Incorrect.
 

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Really Anthem? You have to use ARC as your room correction software name? Really?

Most people on here salivate about Audessey in terms of room correction. Do you have any information that the proprietary Anthem room correction, which looks to be pretty new to them, would be better than the Emotiva solution? Have you looked at any Denon or Marantz models?
Dirac relies on a server some place overseas. Therefore if they go out of business, dirac is useless.

ARC uses your home computer to do trillions of calculations, not relying on a server some where.
 

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The Anthem MRX-510 is a really solid AVR, and it will likely solve your HDMI handshake issues that you have with your UMC-1. Howver, anthem does have a few hdmi handshake issues, its just the nature of the beast. Almost everyone does with some brands. Anthem (and many others) has big issues with Apple products. I would not say that the Anthem is a better sounding unit if the same room correction filters are placed on the MRX-510 and the UMC-1. I would say they are about equal.... this is my opinion and I've had both Anthem MRX and UMC-1 in my room.

With the Anthem you are spending money on internal amps that you won't use since you have the XPA-5. While Anthem's ARC will be an improvement over Emo-Q, if you are going to drop between $1000-$1500 on a new processors or AVR, I would strongly suggest staying with Emotiva and buying the XMC-1. I had the Anthem MRX-710 in my room and for an AVR it was one of the best sounding AVR's at that price point. But compared to my old UMC-1 and XPR-2/XPA-5 combo, it didn't better that combo. The Anthem does have a few more 'features', but it did not have a better sound.

IMO, the XMC-1 is a drastic sound improvement from the UMC-1. Channel separation is crazy good and the sound stage with 2-channel is amazing. Add to that Dirac LE, and you have an amazing room correction software that is as good or is better than Anthem's ARC and in my opinion makes even the best version of Audessey seem bush league. Again, I've used Audessey, Emo-Q, Dirac, and ARC and these are my perceptions.

If you didn't have the XPA-5, then I would be more torn between recommending the 510 or the XMC-1. But with the XPA already in your rack, I feel this is a no brainer and the XMC-1 with Dirac LE is the best option by far.
Great post, right on.
 

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Dirac relies on a server some place overseas. Therefore if they go out of business, dirac is useless.

ARC uses your home computer to do trillions of calculations, not relying on a server some where.
Most of Dirac's calculations are done locally and it does not connect to an overseas server. They have many datacenters but most connect out of Ashburn. You just made this up?
 

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Dirac relies on a server some place overseas. Therefore if they go out of business, dirac is useless.

ARC uses your home computer to do trillions of calculations, not relying on a server some where.
You seem to have some facts that do not add up. But for entertainment sake let's say for some crazy reason Dirac closed their doors, shut off their servers and gave no alternate way to use their room correction software. Dirac doesn't become useless. The Dirac filters you have loaded to the XMC (or any Dirac device) are still there and still work perfectly. You simply wouldn't be able to run Dirac again and reconfigure your filters. Most people only need to run room correction once. Set it and forget it.

Even if all that was true and you needed to rerun Dirac and they have shut down the servers, the XMC-1 can import REW data. So you still have a very good option for your room correction with the XMC-1.
 

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XMC-1... if you are cash strapped, may I suggest a slightly used UMC-200, people are unloading them presumably going for the XMC-1 and I have seen it for usd$300+. I got one of their last ones and am fairly satisfied with it, *if* you don't need all the bell&whistles of the XMC-1. My UMC-200 switches between my Sammy TV, an Apple TV, HTPC Intel 4600 graphic just fine, takes about 6-7 seconds. Emo-Q 2 seems to do a fair job, the numbers it came back with were very close to actual, and of course the UMC-200 does have PEQ, a pleasant surprise to me.
 

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Most people only need to run room correction once. Set it and forget it.
Not true. I've run my room correction dozens of times. :)

New speakers, moving speaker locations, moving listening locations, new treatments, etc. - many reasons to need to re-run the RC.
 
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You are correct. If you change gear as often as you change underwear and if Dirac goes out of business and if the servers go down, then you can't set it and forget it. But I'm guessing most people don't make that many changes. If you can speakers that often, good for you. But most people don't. Which is why I spoke in general terms. :smiley:
 

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Isn't the XMC-1 that high end 'modular' preamp that doesn't even support Atmos or Auro because the back ports aren't that modular?

Has anyone done any blind testing to show that the two preamps sound at all different and that the higher priced one sounds better? Has Emotiva done this?

Very good point about the room correction. I didn't realize that DIRAC relied on a cloud type solution for their room correction. Do they do this to prevent reverse engineering of the setups they use or something?
 

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So you need a internet connection to perform correction correction? what??

Has anyone done any blind testing to show that the two preamps sound at all different and that the higher priced one sounds better? Has Emotiva done this?
Like a scratched record..:rolleyes:
 

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So you need a internet connection to perform correction correction? what??

Dirac Live calibration is done on a computer and needs an Internet connection. It has to do with protecting some of their technology from reverse engineering and copying. I have no concern because they're going nowhere in the near term. Enjoying Dirac Live immensely.
 

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Isn't the XMC-1 that high end 'modular' preamp that doesn't even support Atmos or Auro because the back ports aren't that modular?

Has anyone done any blind testing to show that the two preamps sound at all different and that the higher priced one sounds better? Has Emotiva done this?

Very good point about the room correction. I didn't realize that DIRAC relied on a cloud type solution for their room correction. Do they do this to prevent reverse engineering of the setups they use or something?
Yes the XMC is a modular preamp. And yes, it does not support Atmos. If you want Atmos, then don't consider the XMC. It's simple like that. If you know that for the foreseeable future you will enjoy a 7.2 system and want great sound and the ability to upgrade AV cards in your processor as new technologies come out, then the XMC is a very fine choice. I have a dedicated room and think my 7.2 system sounds amazing and I have no desire to start cutting holes and adding speakers. So the XMC-1 was perfect for me.

As for your question about if anyone has done blind testing to see if two preamps sound at all different and if the higher priced one sounds better, that's a big can of worms. Better sound is subjective. I love the sound of B&W speakers and don't care for the sound of Klipsch horns. Yet my friend has the opposite opinion. Which one of is right? To me, the more expensive B&W speakers sound better and are worth the extra money. To him, they do not and the extra money is wasted. I think the question you need to ask is are the parts used in a processor of higher quality, better performing and a better value. IMO, when it comes to Emotiva and more specifically the XMC-1, absolutely yes.

I've had the ability to test mid to high-end Denon and Marantz AVR's in my room. I've tested high end Anthem AVR's in my room. I've had a high priced Anthem processor in my room. I've had a Marantz processor in my room and I've had the $500 and $1999 Emotiva processors in my room. Since sound is subjective as I described above, I can't answer if the more expensive processors are worth the extra money. But in my opinion there was little to no difference in all the AVR's in sound quality, regardless of the price or brand. However, the Anthems had a unique sound that I liked more than the mid and higher priced Denon and Marantz and the unit felt like a better build quality with both touch and user interface. The big step up came when switching to dedicated processors. Channel separation and sound stage increased greatly witht he processors when compared to even the highest priced AVR. And my opinion is the $500 UMC-1 had a very simialir performance to the Marantz 8801, however the Marantz had a better build quality and user interface, as well as room correction. The change from the $500 Emotiva processor to the $1999 processor was substantial. And when I compared the Marantz 8801 to the Emotiva XMC-1, I highly preferred the XMC-1 for audio quality, video quality (I don't want the AVP processing my video signal) and room correction.

Sorry for the long answer. But it's a difficult question to answer and it's all subjective. But when asked of my opinon, if the XMC-1 fits a buyers needs, it is hands down the first product I would recommend.
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
If you know that for the foreseeable future you will enjoy a 7.2 system and want great sound and the ability to upgrade AV cards in your processor as new technologies come out, then the XMC is a very fine choice.
Trying to understand:
What is the modularity we are talking about here? Is it just at the software level or even at the hardware? What can we swap in/out, and is it user upgradable, or need to send it back to Emotiva? The Emotiva site seems to make a blanket statement about 'future technology support'. DTX:x?
Thanks.
 
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