What's new

Pioneer 54TX or Anthem AVM30 as per/pro? (1 Viewer)

David Barteaux

Stunt Coordinator
Jan 6, 2001
Is the extra cost of the Anthem really going to give noticable sonic improvements to a Pioneer Elite used as a pre/pro? Forget all the features of each, which I could live with or without on each. Its sonic improvement decoding surround movie material I'm unsure of.

Dave Moritz

Senior HTF Member
Jul 7, 2001
Real Name
Dave Moritz
While the Pioneer is a nice peice. Any difference would depend on what external power amp was used and more importantly what speakers your where using. If you where to listen to both of them at a low level you may not notice much of a difference. IMHO though normally i feel that the pre/pros do have an edge on audio performance. The question you should ask yourself is which one has all the features you need. If you where to back that Pioneer up with a really clean stought external amp and good speaker. There is a good chance that you will not hear much of a difference. I have heard some people say that the Anthem is really nice and I have heard that the Anthem is not all that great. I have not as of yet formed an opinion ether way. The pre/pros that i prefere are more along the line of higher end and would definantly blow both the Anthem and Pioneer Elites out of the water (Sunfire, Meridian, McIntosh, Lexicon). But with using a reciever as a pre/pro if you are running an up to date newer reciever. You should be able to get surround sound performance that should be just as good as the Anthem. While this may not be true for all brand of recievers the Pioneer Elite line does a darn good job for the money.


Jul 2, 2003
I'm not going to speak of the 54TX, but as a current 53TX owner, and a former AVM-20 owner (in different systems, I didn't replace the AVM-20 with the 53TX, so please don't take it that way), I can tell you that the 53TX made for a rather lousy preamp compared to the Anthem. It is one of the absolute best processors out there and its transparency is absolutely fantastic, as I'm sure you know are its features etc etc. Decoding is also first class. Can't really go wrong with that piece and it is upgradable both software and hardware.....

Of course as Dave said, it all depends on whether it balances with the rest of your system.


Supporting Actor
Sep 9, 2002
I used an old but very good Pio. Elite VSX97x receviver. Then I added an amp. Not too much difference. Then I siwtched to an Elite SP99d preamp-decoder. Again not too much difference. Then I added the Anthem. Big difference!
The Anthem made the most difference in my system. I have had a few amps in and out, but none of the differences were as noticable as the pre-amp.
I had a friend that did the same thing. He was running an Elite VSX36 and he addded a Parasound AT2205. Then went with a Rotel 1068 and that was the bigger change to him as well.
I am not saying the Anthem is the end all of pre-amps but if you can afford it, I think you will be happy. Plus I think it will get you further down the road than the Pio.

...and IMHO I wouldn't consider Sunfire in the same ranks as Meridian, Lexicon, or Mac. They do make good stuff though.
If you can, try them both and see what makes YOU happy.
Good luck.

Kevin. W

Oct 27, 1999
What amp will you be using to power the speakers? The Anthem is 2+ times more expensive than the Elite. Will it offer that much of a performance increase? I don't think so. Personally I would get the 56TXi to use as the pre/pro. The processing power of the 56TXi is Dual Motorola DSP's, same one found in the Anthem. DAC's are Burr-Brown Delta Sigma and this puppy has 2x27,000uf Caps for those sudden transients in HT and Music.
My HT setup has a 56TXi paired with a NAD S250 and the sound is :emoji_thumbsup: :emoji_thumbsup:


Users who are viewing this thread

Forum statistics

Latest member
Recent bookmarks