Why no love for the Panasonic XR25/XR45 HT receivers here??

Discussion in 'AV Receivers' started by Danny Tse, Jan 5, 2004.

  1. LanceJ

    LanceJ Producer

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    Chris: I don't want people thinking I believe it's wrong to desire or own hi-end equipment; I just don't want people--espeically newbies--thinking that this level of equipment is the ONLY equipment that is capable of producing good sound.

    And as far the binding post thing: oh boy this gets into a subject similar to the arguments over cables and speaker wires--I don't want to start that kind of discussion! But as far as a $300 receiver producing enough current and voltage to warrant a large contact area.......I'm just not sure. Have you ever looked on the inside of a receiver, any receiver, and seen the skinny metal tabs many use to make the connection between the binding post connector and the wire from the output of the power transistors themselves? They can be quite tiny. Same with the connectors on the individual drivers in a loudspeaker (yes, I am one of those weird people you see standing on their tiptoes, peering through the grills on the tops of receivers & amps or peering into a speaker's port hole, pushing (lightly!) on woofer surrounds, etc, etc,. I drive salespeople nuts. [​IMG] ).

    And I've noticed for years Technics/Panasonic receivers always have good amps in their price ranges--I believe this is where they put much of their budget for their receivers since this is something that really makes a real-world sonic difference.

    LJ
     
  2. LanceJ

    LanceJ Producer

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    Um, I didn't mean to stifle any discussion about this or any other subject [​IMG] so if anybody owns this receiver hit us with your impressions of it. And since Denon just announced that POA-1x, a large seven channel digital separates amp, I think it would be good to discuss these kinds of amps. Because I have a feeling we are going to see more & more of them in the future, and in all price ranges.

    LJ
     
  3. JimPeitersen

    JimPeitersen Second Unit

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    I've also wondered why this forum hasn't discussed the "Krell killer." I have the SA-XR10 (pre-25/45 digital receiver) and can say that it is impressive. I won't say that it is the "best" I've ever heard, but I would bet that anyone who listens to these new receivers/amps will be impressed. I have multiple HT's, and a very nice two channel system. I wouldn't hesitate to build either of these systems (new) using these new Panny's. The other nice thing about them is that you can use the "party" mode to get five/six channels (stereo bi-amping speakers, active system, etc.) This combined with the form factor (the SA-XR10 is just over 1 inch tall!!!) make them great choices. Sound-wise (two channel), I would say that the SA-XR10 is comparable to my older Soundstream DA-2 "digital" amp that retailed for close to $1,200. The bass is the most impressive, these new amps (along with others I've heard) just seem to "control" the bass notes like nothing else. Technology is a wonderful thing!
     
  4. ChrisLazarko

    ChrisLazarko Supporting Actor

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    Lance, by no means would I tell a person or want a person to think Panasonic makes a bad product, every product I own that they make has been decent.

    I simply don't understand why a company couldn't shell out a few more $$$ to put binding posts on, which is almost major manufacturers even in the entry-level range. Panasonic only having perhaps binding posts for the Left and Right channel is kind of odd. And there is no reason they couldn't make it a tad bit bigger to fit all binding posts for all 5 outputs.

    Yes I also know what you mean by the thin pieces of metal that connect them also... i've taken apart my recievers before in curiousity.

    Regardless Panasonic does make a nice product even if they don't include some higher-end stuff on there recievers. For the price they charge, I wouldn't be able to argue.
     
  5. David G Greene

    David G Greene Stunt Coordinator

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    Nice LJ.
    [​IMG]
     
  6. Danny Tse

    Danny Tse Producer

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    On the subject of digital amps....

    [​IMG]

    Don't know if Yamaha is going to import this digital power amp to the US, but the MX-D1 can produce 500 watts/channel in a relatively compact case.

    Edit: Oops....never mind. This digital power amp is on Yamaha's US website already.
     
  7. Stephen Dodds

    Stephen Dodds Second Unit

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    I was the one who started the Krell Killer thread over at AVS. It certainly got some interest [​IMG].

    I have put my money where my mouth was and replaced my two $2000 power amps with two $230 XR25s. I use them only as power amps to drive my three way active mains and two way active center.

    I've owned some very expensive amps (including Krell) and the wee Panasonics are the real deal.

    I have no idea how they go for processing or as receiver because I haven't tried them that way.

    Cheers

    Steve
     
  8. Wayne A. Pflughaupt

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  9. RobCar

    RobCar Stunt Coordinator

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    As far as Panasonic is concerned, if I came upon one while in the market, I'd certainly spend some time with it based on my experience with the brand. As electronics mfs go, they're excellent -- they make reliable stuff that lasts for decades.
     
  10. Jack Gilvey

    Jack Gilvey Producer

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    Wow...coming from you I'll take that quite seriously. Could I get you to go into more detail?
     
  11. Stephen Dodds

    Stephen Dodds Second Unit

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    After reading the stuff on the Newform site, at Audiocircle and then the thread I started at AVS I figured I may as well try one out myself. While I liked my previous amps I'm always willing to try out somethng smaller and cheaper, and the theory behind them seems logical.

    So I bought one and hooked it up to one of my speakers and compared it. It seemed as good to my ears so I got another one and sold my previous 60lb monsters and have no complaints.

    I should mention, however, that I am not a big believer in large differences between amps.

    I would be even happier if my crossover had digital ins and outs so I could go digital all the way.

    Cheers

    Steve
     
  12. Chu Gai

    Chu Gai Lead Actor

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    So what's stopping you? [​IMG] If you get a chance, why don't you post your DIY speaker over at the forum here...course I might've missed it.
     
  13. Dom P

    Dom P Stunt Coordinator

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    Class-D amps make alot of noise due to their on/off operation. Instead of a sine wave they make a square wave. This is great for subs since it's much much harder to hear distortion at low frequencies, but for mids and highs I would take a class A/B amp. Sure you can modulate the audio stream and pass it through a filter, but do you really want your signal to be going through all that. It can't possibly help the quality, can only hurt it. I'm sure when using top of the line parts, one can achieve this. But when buying a low to middle end receiver, chances of them using quality circuit components are zero.

    It's also not new technology. It's been around since the 40s. It took that long to figure out how to use it for audio, since it was a very bad choice for audio as I mentioned.

    So you can higher efficiency and inturn less heat. It's not that big of a deal for home audio.

    Class-D is a great choice for car audio when driving subs. Nice and small and don't produce much heat.
     
  14. Danny Tse

    Danny Tse Producer

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  15. Jack Gilvey

    Jack Gilvey Producer

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    So, based on your own audition (right?), you disagree with Steve's opinion? Are the Panasonics "Class D" or something else? What other "digital" amps have you compared it to?
     
  16. Chu Gai

    Chu Gai Lead Actor

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    I'm pretty sure the Panasonic's aren't Class D and quite possibly are more similar to what's being called Class T. I know in their car decks Panasonic is using the TriPath chip and they may well be using it also in their receivers. I've got an inquiry out along those lines but haven't received a reply. If a manufacturer is going go with power and a small, thin form factor, it's not going to be so easy to achieve using linear approaches.

    I think, like anything else, one needs to choose an amp or receiver, that's capable of driving one's speakers. The little that I know about the Class T types is that they may be finnicky when speaker impedances are low and/or are more reactive rather than resistive. Stephen Dodds, a careful and thorough individual, I'm sure took all this into account when deciding how to drive his speakers.

    BTW, what do you all think about the fact that most of these class T digital amps and receivers are specifying power at 6 ohms in light of what appears to be an increasing # of speaker manufacturers specifying 6 ohm nominal impedance speakers? Think there's more than a coincidence here?
     
  17. Danny Tse

    Danny Tse Producer

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    >>In self-pimping mode
     
  18. Joseph Shaw

    Joseph Shaw Stunt Coordinator

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    LanceJ, I don't see where anyone said these receivers sucked. Did I miss something?

    I stand by my comment about it needing more inputs. I don't know about you, but I need more than 3 inputs on a HT reciver because I have more than three sources. And I'm by no means an equipment snob. It just doesn't fit my needs and my current receiver does. It also had more features for less money than the XR45.

    Now the XR70 looks interesting and would fit my needs better, but it won't be available until August of 2004.
     
  19. JimPeitersen

    JimPeitersen Second Unit

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    Guys,
    I may be wrong, but the Pannies are not "Class D" which is really just a more efficient analog amplifier with a switching power supply. If I am not mistaken the Panasonics use the TI (Toccata) chipset, and are fully "digital" (basically they are a powered DAC that can drive speakers.) Here is a great site that examines these new technologies:
    http://www.classd.org/
    JP
     
  20. LanceJ

    LanceJ Producer

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    Dom said:


    [​IMG]

    Just because a circuit doesn't include military spec components mounted on fiberglass pc boards doesn't mean it can't sound good.

    And I'm pretty sure Texas Instruments knows what they are doing when it comes to designing sophisticated digital circuits, especially when being used by another company with a worldwide reputation to protect & millions of dollars on the line. BTW: TI is also the same company who invented that DLP chip used on many new projection TVs.

    Anyway...

    I was finally able to audition the XR-25. Speakers used were a pair of Infinity Alpha 50s (two ported 8" woofers, 5" mid & a 1" dome tweeter--$900/pair), with an H/K dvd player as the source component, in a room with acoustic tile & carpeting (can ya guess where I was? [​IMG] And trust me, it took some sweet talking to get this little test arranged, but luckily I'm a regular there :b ). CDs used were Jack Johnson's Brushfire Fairytales and Yes' Close To The Edge. I listened to all this for half an hour and.......they sounded like Alpha 50s playing Yes and Jack Johnson alright! I didn't notice anything sonically out of place--no grainy highs, no flabby low-end, just cleanly reproduced acoustic folk music and densely-layered 1970s prog rock. I am totally aware this was a casual test but if someone asked me right now if they should buy an XR-25 based only on sound quality, I would tell them to go ahead and get one. Maybe this component has some kind of sonic weirdness only audible in a controlled test against a traditional amp but if it requires this to hear these problems (if they even exist) then they can't be that bad.

    I would have liked to have tried a low-impedance speaker but didn't want to push my luck. I am waiting for a pro review of this receiver to see if this might be a true problem to worry about.


    Joseph: I'll admit to thinking that the XR-25 should have at least a couple more inputs; not sure what Panasonic was thinking. One theory: it looked like they spent the bucks on lots of video switching but skimped on the audio-only side of things (and for me, audio is number one priority, HT is second).

    LJ
     

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