View Full Version : [Help Needed] Preamp vs. Processor?
07-27-2010, 03:14 PM
I'm confused. Is there a difference between the two? I'm looking to rotate out my vsx-1019, for something I can run an external amp with. What differences would I get between getting, say, a receiver with preamp outputs, and a theater processor? I'm not looking for recommendations, just a clarification of the differences between the two, or if they are just different different ways of saying the same thing.
07-27-2010, 03:47 PM
An AV receiver is a combination of a preamp, a processor and an amp (and now video switcher too).
A processor takes audio signals (either in digital or analog) and changes them (ie: decodes Dolby, DTS, does bass management, etc).
A preamp doesn't usually have decoding/processing capability. It is for source/output selection and volume control. In the old days, that would also include phono equalization and some gain stages to better drive the amp.
For theater use, I'd recommend using an AVR with pre-outs. Most of the current pre-pros are either very expensive, or they are somewhat outdated with respect to their decoding capabilities (TrueHD/DTS-HD) and/or don't have HDMi capability.
07-27-2010, 10:30 PM
Thanks for the explanation. I think I get it now. I imagine a receiver with pre-outs will be exactly what I'm after. :)
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