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Thread: HT pre wth HDMI

  1. #1

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    Default HT pre wth HDMI

    Been using my Denon AVR 2803 for my HT pre, what are the opinion of a moderately-priced dedicated pre with HDMI? I am also debating whether I just lkeep all HDMI going striaght to my 4 TV HDMI inputs and run digital coax/optical audio through the pre, or to get a pre with HDMI. Or am I just better off leaving things the way they are? All thoughts are appreciated.
    SDA SRS 3.1TL, Adcom GFP710 (preamp), GFA5400 amplifier, Denon DVD-2900
    SDA SRS (circa 1988), Integra DHC 40.2 (HT preamp) Adcom GFA555 II, Monitor 4.6 II (center and rears) Adcom GFA2535 & Oppo BDP-103, LG LM7600 55"
    RTA 15TL (crossovers by VR3), Adcom GFP710 pre & GFA545 II amplifier, NAD C545BEE
    Other Polks not in service currently; SDA2a, SDA CRS+, SDA SRS 2.3, Monitor 5jr+

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    "moderately-priced dedicated pre with HDMI" - those words don't go together. "Moderately-priced reciever with HDMI", now your talking.

    Whats the budget we are looking at price wise as well as how big of a room are we in, hows it laid out, do you want good automatic calibration, etc.

    I personally would not go HDMI to the TV and spdif to the pre/reciever. Normally those units have more HDMI's than coax/spdif ports. That and you lose the "lossless" audio off blu-rays which is a BIG drawback IMHO.
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  3. #3

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    I think you want to go with an integra 9.9 for around $700 used. It has hdmi 1.3 and it sounds awesome or you can double up and go with an integra 80.2 for $1300 used and also take advantage of xt32. You would never go wrong for HT with these pre's.

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    I was looking at the Rotel RSP-1572, it is a dedicated 7.1 preamp with HDMI. I will never use a receiver (at least the amp part), hence my heavy investment in ADCOM products. So the lossless audio from Blu-Ray only comes through the HDMI? I have lots of DVD-A and SACD material, and my digital playback is all WAV or FLAC through a SONOS device. To be honest I guess the only real device that I have to have HDMI is Blu-Ray, It is just easier than component to cable, no real quality upgrade for video since its all 480p anyway. I really dont have room for a dedicated 2-channerl audio system and a HT system, so I am trying to bridge both worlds, which I know is against the rules, but thats what I have to work with. Room is about 15x18', not too big. I have the SDA 2A for fronts and M5jr+ for center and rear channels.
    SDA SRS 3.1TL, Adcom GFP710 (preamp), GFA5400 amplifier, Denon DVD-2900
    SDA SRS (circa 1988), Integra DHC 40.2 (HT preamp) Adcom GFA555 II, Monitor 4.6 II (center and rears) Adcom GFA2535 & Oppo BDP-103, LG LM7600 55"
    RTA 15TL (crossovers by VR3), Adcom GFP710 pre & GFA545 II amplifier, NAD C545BEE
    Other Polks not in service currently; SDA2a, SDA CRS+, SDA SRS 2.3, Monitor 5jr+

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    Quote Originally Posted by Denzel View Post
    I was looking at the Rotel RSP-1572, it is a dedicated 7.1 preamp with HDMI. I will never use a receiver (at least the amp part), hence my heavy investment in ADCOM products. So the lossless audio from Blu-Ray only comes through the HDMI? I have lots of DVD-A and SACD material, and my digital playback is all WAV or FLAC through a SONOS device. To be honest I guess the only real device that I have to have HDMI is Blu-Ray, It is just easier than component to cable, no real quality upgrade for video since its all 480p anyway. I really dont have room for a dedicated 2-channerl audio system and a HT system, so I am trying to bridge both worlds, which I know is against the rules, but thats what I have to work with. Room is about 15x18', not too big. I have the SDA 2A for fronts and M5jr+ for center and rear channels.
    .

    I'm wondering this - the bolded part of the quote above - also. Isn't the Blu-Ray audio "lossless" also by the optical digital or the coax outs too? Or is it only lossless if you use the HDMI out? I was under the impression that if you were using only 5.1 channels that either of the three Blu-Ray outputs would be lossless, but that in using 7.1 with optical or coax audio outs you'd lose the surround back channels. Can anybody clarify? Similar to the OP, I am considering using a Harman Kardon AVR 525, which doesn't have HDMI (just component in/out for video), for sound processing via optical/coax inputs from CDP/Blu-Ray/Direct TV and just running via HDMI directly to the TV from the Blu-Ray and Direct TV for video. Would we be losing out (sound quality-wise) this way?

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    The digital Dolby TrueHD and DTS-MA signals are only passed through HDMI. If I recall correctly SPDIF doesn't have enough bandwidth to pass more than 2ch PCM either, so HDMI to the pre/pro or avr is a necessity if you wish to take advantage of the lossless audio (other than having a source with multichannel analog outputs).

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    If you're looking for a pre with HDMI your choices are very limited. I run an Outlaw 990 pre (no HDMI) and use optical/coax for my digital sources. It works very well for me. The only sacrifice with this setup is that optical/coax does not have the bandwidth for Dolby TrueHD or DTS:MA, so if you want those from your Blu-Ray/SACD you need to have a source that will decode them and output 5.1/7.1 analog. Looking for a bargain on an Oppo myself for that reason. The 990 has a 7.1 input.

    I know I'm in the minority doing it this way, but there are others doing the same. You really only need the HDMI for lossless audio, which means you really only need it for Blu-Ray/SACD. So if your TV can handle HDMI switching, having the same capability in your pre is redundant.

    I much prefer a dedicated, high quality pre to using an AVR as a pre simply for the HDMI capabilities. But as they say, YMMV.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Denzel View Post
    I was looking at the Rotel RSP-1572, it is a dedicated 7.1 preamp with HDMI. I will never use a receiver (at least the amp part), hence my heavy investment in ADCOM products. So the lossless audio from Blu-Ray only comes through the HDMI? I have lots of DVD-A and SACD material, and my digital playback is all WAV or FLAC through a SONOS device. To be honest I guess the only real device that I have to have HDMI is Blu-Ray, It is just easier than component to cable, no real quality upgrade for video since its all 480p anyway. I really dont have room for a dedicated 2-channerl audio system and a HT system, so I am trying to bridge both worlds, which I know is against the rules, but thats what I have to work with. Room is about 15x18', not too big. I have the SDA 2A for fronts and M5jr+ for center and rear channels.
    Denzel,

    I see where your coming from, trying to mesh digital, hdmi, sonos, into a one box solution. I think the HT pre/pro would be a good idea, but also think a seperate dac would help your listening pleasure on the Sonos side of things too. Look at a Marantz too, though I have nothing against the Rotel, the Marantz will be slightly warmer if thats what your looking for. Goes without saying that budget will play a big part in your choices. Cary and Classe make some darn nice pre/pro's but can be pricey, even used.

  9. #9

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    Quote Originally Posted by tonyb View Post
    Denzel,

    I see where your coming from, trying to mesh digital, hdmi, sonos, into a one box solution. I think the HT pre/pro would be a good idea, but also think a seperate dac would help your listening pleasure on the Sonos side of things too. Look at a Marantz too, though I have nothing against the Rotel, the Marantz will be slightly warmer if thats what your looking for. Goes without saying that budget will play a big part in your choices. Cary and Classe make some darn nice pre/pro's but can be pricey, even used.
    Yes I agree on the Blu-ray really being my only source that requires the HDMI for full bandwidth 5.1/7.1... and my LCD does have 4 HDMI switchable inputs. SO is spending the extra on HDMI really worth it? The Rotel is $2199 MSRP, and I will certainly look at the Marantz. Im not opposed to spedning that kind of $$$ on a pre... just seee quite a few other options with 99% of the other features I desire. As far as my streaming digital sources...any suggestions on a DAC...? I had used a AppleTV two years ago until I discovered that even with WAV ripping the downstream output is much lower.. so I purchased the SONOS. I have heard many things aboutr how vast mprovements are made with separate DAC's... thoughts?
    SDA SRS 3.1TL, Adcom GFP710 (preamp), GFA5400 amplifier, Denon DVD-2900
    SDA SRS (circa 1988), Integra DHC 40.2 (HT preamp) Adcom GFA555 II, Monitor 4.6 II (center and rears) Adcom GFA2535 & Oppo BDP-103, LG LM7600 55"
    RTA 15TL (crossovers by VR3), Adcom GFP710 pre & GFA545 II amplifier, NAD C545BEE
    Other Polks not in service currently; SDA2a, SDA CRS+, SDA SRS 2.3, Monitor 5jr+

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