Yamaha's New Flagship Pre-Amp: RX-A5100 - Home Theater Forum and Systems - HomeTheaterShack.com

 
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post #1 of 5 Old 09-18-15, 06:44 PM Thread Starter
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Yamaha's New Flagship Pre-Amp: RX-A5100

Yamaha recently added a goliath to its stable of incredibly competitive – and, in some cases, class leading – AV component and receiver products with the announcement of a new flagship pre-amplifier. The CX-A5100 comes loaded with several key future-proofing features not found on its predecessor, the CX-A5000. It also offers some audiophile connectivity options omitted from the company’s current flagship AV Receiver (RX-A3050). Today we’ll preview the CX-A5100 and a few of its more enticing selling points.



The new CV-A5100 is loaded with modern features that you'd expect from a moderately priced flagship pre-amp.


The CX-A5100 is a beefy beast with dimensions that might challenge folks with smaller component spaces. Its depth pushes 19-inches, which is a lot considering a company such as Marantz has a flagship pre-amp that’s just 16-inches deep. So if the CX-A5100 ends up on your radar, make sure you get the measuring tape out before ordering. The unit’s price is also challenging, landing just under $3,000 (MSRP), which is nearly $800 more than their flagship AVR. But, to keep things in perspective, that $3,000 price tag is actually well below flagship offerings from competitors.

So, what does $3,000 fetch in today’s world? The CX-A5100 appears to be completely compatible with just about every new audio and visual technology on the market, Auro-3D excluded. If Auro-3D is a must have feature, then you’ll need to cross Yamaha off your list (the company doesn’t currently support the technology on any of its AV products). This shouldn’t be too much of a concern for US customers, as both Dolby and DTS’s new immersive codecs (Atmos and DTS:X) appear to be market leaders and are supported by Yamaha on the CX-A5100. Not surprisingly, the A5100 also supports HDMI 2.0a, which means it can handle 4K (60fps, 4:4:4 color), the new HDCP 2.2 security protocol, and the most important 4K revolution feature: High Dynamic Range. Owners will find an abundance of connectivity options to play nicely with their chosen sources, including eight HDMI inputs (seven of which are HDCP 2.2 compatible), two HDMI outputs, and built-in WiFi and Bluetooth.

One of the more common beefs with Yamaha’s top AVR, the A3050, is the exclusion of multichannel inputs. Yamaha has included these on the A5100 in a 5.1 fashion. Users also have the option of tapping into 11.2 XLR outputs (another feature absent on the A3050). This is actually a very interesting feature, as it includes dual subwoofer connectivity which can eliminate unwanted line noise plagued by long runs of subwoofer cabling (of course this assumes you have subs that accept XLR inputs). It’s also notable that the A5100 has dual balanced audio input jacks for high-end playback sources.



The backside of the A5100 has connectivity options galore.


When paired with Yamaha’s MX-A5000 power amplifier (or any other 11.2 channel capable amp), the A5100 can supply full 7.1.4 Dolby Atmos playback. If you’re thinking about dipping your toes in the Atmos waters, deploying a full 7.1.4 package is highly advised as pathway to the most immersive of sound experiences. The A5100 comes with high-performance SABRE32 DACs (192 kHz – 32 bit processing), paired with a plethora of Yamaha's DSP mode offerings and correction from the company’s top YAPO offering, for exacting and detailed sound.

Yamaha says the build quality of the A5100 (internally and externally) incorporates countermeasures that address interference from digital circuitry and power, in addition to vibration. All-in-all, the CX-A5100 looks to be a high performer that should make the shortlist of serious enthusiasts looking for a modern pre-amp unit.

The A5100 is set to ship sometime during September 2015 (not available at publish date of this article). Visit http://usa.yamaha.com/products/audio-visual/aventage/ for more information about the A5100 and other AVENTAGE tagged products.


Image Credits: Yamaha Corporation
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post #2 of 5 Old 09-18-15, 08:51 PM
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Re: Yamaha's New Flagship Pre-Amp: RX-A5100

Thanks for the info Todd. I pre-ordered one, and should have it by the end of the month. This will be my first experience with Atmos, and Dirac. I hope this takes my setup to the next level.

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post #3 of 5 Old 09-18-15, 09:06 PM Thread Starter
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Re: Yamaha's New Flagship Pre-Amp: RX-A5100

Quote:
ellisr63 wrote: View Post
Thanks for the info Todd. I pre-ordered one, and should have it by the end of the month. This will be my first experience with Atmos, and Dirac. I hope this takes my setup to the next level.
Ron, You're in for a real treat. I've had 7.2.4 up and running for a few weeks now (mounted my presence channels in MLP and FLP). It is absolutely mind blowingly awesome. I suggest picking up a copy of Gravity: Diamond Luxe Edition. It has the film in 7.1.4 Atmos. It's beyond good. John Wick is another one that really stretches the sound stage upward. I've had a few friends over to get their impressions...a lot of looks of "is this for real"?

Hopefully you can do a comparison of YAPO and Dirac... I'd be curious to know if you can hear an audible (or produce a measurable) difference in correction.
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post #4 of 5 Old 09-19-15, 01:00 PM
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Re: Yamaha's New Flagship Pre-Amp: RX-A5100

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Todd Anderson wrote: View Post
Ron, You're in for a real treat. I've had 7.2.4 up and running for a few weeks now (mounted my presence channels in MLP and FLP). It is absolutely mind blowingly awesome. I suggest picking up a copy of Gravity: Diamond Luxe Edition. It has the film in 7.1.4 Atmos. It's beyond good. John Wick is another one that really stretches the sound stage upward. I've had a few friends over to get their impressions...a lot of looks of "is this for real"?

Hopefully you can do a comparison of YAPO and Dirac... I'd be curious to know if you can hear an audible (or produce a measurable) difference in correction.
I am assuming the Dirac will be better since Audyssey in the past was better than YPAO, and the Dirac sounded better to my ears than Audyssey. I am wondering if it is possible to tune with YPAO, and then take the settings for the Atmos channels, and subs and input them in manually into the Yamaha, and turn off YPAO. Then I could use the Dirac for just the 7 channels and let the Yamaha handle the sub and Atmos channels.

tia,
Ron

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post #5 of 5 Old 09-19-15, 08:33 PM Thread Starter
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Re: Yamaha's New Flagship Pre-Amp: RX-A5100

I believe you can, to some extent...you may not have as many input filter options as you'd like...but you can definitely alter YAPO corrections.
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