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Discussion Starter #1
Looking for recommendations to narrow my search. Budget is about $1500, but I could do half or twice that if it makes sense. I already have 15 ch of <.03% THD amplification @150w lrc, 65w other. Goals:
1. Musical but this kit is mostly for HT.
2. Mate with latest LG OLED TV.
3. Reliable for 8-10 years.
4. eARC is nice.
5. Good room correction... Dirac preferred
6. Great multiroom control... I use Roon and would like to have 3 zones that could be the same source or 3 separate sources with roon/harmony volume and track control.
7. 7.4.1 processing

Hard to justify a $3-5k processor.
Looking at NAD and Marantz receivers

Please help he narrow my search
 

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Dirac and great multi-room are nice to haves not must haves. A single zone 2 is pretty standard. I realize it’s about trade offs and I looking for suggestions on the best value around my rough budget. It might end up being a marantz, NAD, Anthem receiver. Maybe a marantz pre/pro, not sure what else is out there... not sure that 3k+ for a pre/pro is worth it.
 

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Dirac and great multi-room are nice to haves not must haves. A single zone 2 is pretty standard. I realize it’s about trade offs and I looking for suggestions on the best value around my rough budget. It might end up being a marantz, NAD, Anthem receiver. Maybe a marantz pre/pro, not sure what else is out there... not sure that 3k+ for a pre/pro is worth it.
Browse here: https://www.accessories4less.com/index.php?page=seek&id[m]=pattern&id[q]=processors
 

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Marantz AV7703, 04 or 05 pre/pro will do everything you’re looking for around or less the $2k. Used 7704’s can be had for around $1500. Nice thing about a separate pre/pro is that you can easily move, upgrade and swap amps around as your setups change. Pre/pro technologies change and evolve over the years, amps not as much. Also pre/pros have balanced outs for longer runs to back/rear surround amps. Only downside of a separate pre/pro is more space needed. I run a 7704 in a 7.0.4 channel configuration.
 

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While going with separate amps and a pre/pro does allow you to change out just the pre/pro, the bigger issue is that a AVR with amps and pre/pro usually costs lees than a similar pre/pro. So even if you have separate amps, it still makes sense to purchase an AVR with per-amp outs. For example late last year I purchased a Marantz SR7012 for under $2K. The equivalent pre/pro was over $4K.
 

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One "must have" on my list is Auro-3D. Not because there are so many discs with Auro-3D soundtracks, but because their upmixer, AuroMatic, makes about 80% of Atmos and DTS:X soundtracks sound better than they sound if you decode them with Atmos or DTS:X because no human was involved in the creation of 80% (or more) of the Atmos/DTS:X soundtracks... studios don't provide a budget for that most of the time so you end up with miserably bad immersive sound if you decode with Atmos or DTS:X . If you have 15 channels and you want to use them all optimally, you need a pretty sophisticated pre/pro and I've never seen an Asian brand that will actually decode to 15 or 16 channels. DTS:X Pro will get past the current 11-channel upmix limit (no doubt, Dolby has something similar in the works if it isn't already supported by Atmos). Also, Marantz charged $200 extra for adding Auro-3D to their pre/pros until the 7705 which includes it at no additional cost. When you do the $200 upgrate, you get AuroMatic also.

For full 15 or 16 channel decoding, you need a much more expensive processor, something from Storm or Trinnov, for example. Those start in the high 4-figures and go into the low 5 figures. You will have some limitations with a $1500 budget, so choose carefully. There's no reason to eliminate Integra from your search, their pre/pros are certainly competitive with Marantz, though Integra has not embraced AuroMatic so far. Some pre/pros will measure 2 subs separately and correct them separately... others will send out ONE LFE signal to both subs you have so you will have only one set of adjustments for the pair of subwoofers with all the settings going to both subs.
 

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Commercial Dolby Atmos does 25.4.10. Guys on avsforum.com are using multiple AVR's to get past Dolby Atmos x.x.6.
 

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No processor needed that does more channels?

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