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Anthem AVM60 Review (AV Processor)

nathan

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Given how short staffed Anthem has been for nearly a year, I guess I wouldn't be too surprised if their response and interaction is still pending. And given how they are still behind on rolling out features and bug fixes for the newest generation of their gear, if I were them, I would be shoveling resources into those customer-related areas if I had to prioritize and choose.

Note that I'm not saying that means we should not ask and should not expect more on this topic from all involved. I would love to see it, for sure. I'm just speculating that there may be a pile of things ahead of this on their plate.
 

JR449

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Maybe I get motivated to do it soon. :)

Suprise us soon, please! I come check daily is it out. :) It´s been quiet on the av-receiver/processor side for some time, but soon we get lot of new products which normal people can afford so things will get intresting.
 

DuncanTodd

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Given how short staffed Anthem has been for nearly a year, I guess I wouldn't be too surprised if their response and interaction is still pending. And given how they are still behind on rolling out features and bug fixes for the newest generation of their gear, if I were them, I would be shoveling resources into those customer-related areas if I had to prioritize and choose.

Note that I'm not saying that means we should not ask and should not expect more on this topic from all involved. I would love to see it, for sure. I'm just speculating that there may be a pile of things ahead of this on their plate.
Seems to be a standard with such brands now to release half baked products with missing features to be added later. Now the Covid19 excuse gives them extra validation.
 
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amirm

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It turned out the broken communication was due to unfortunate illness of my contact. He is back and I plan to test the AVM70. I have a couple of other AV products to test first as they have strict deadlines.
 

nathan

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Seems to be a standard with such brands now to release half baked products with missing features to be added later. Now the Covid19 excuse gives them extra validation.

Given that the primary contact was out due to illness I guess my reaction is I'm glad (s)he recovered, unlike my nephews father.
 

tparm

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It turned out the broken communication was due to unfortunate illness of my contact. He is back and I plan to test the AVM70. I have a couple of other AV products to test first as they have strict deadlines.
Hey @amirm is this still forthcoming? Interesting to find the AVM 70 does have a direct (non-digitized) OPTION for their analog input. In the set up menu you have to choose "no" for convert analog otherwise the input is digitized. I just find that interesting and in case that wasn't brought up in discussions with Anthem (which now that I think about it I'm sure it was) I thought I'd mention it. It is Anthem's "pure direct" if you will. Thanks and looking forward to it.
 

Mike-48

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I hope that time can be found to really understand the functioning of this unit (I mean from a user's point of view) and try out the ARC DSP, at least subjectively, in Amir's system. With any room correction device, it is inevitable that some headroom loss and perhaps a little distortion will be tradeoffs for improved (flatter) frequency response obtained through DSP. Of course, one hopes losses will be small, maybe even inaudible. I do think that reviewing a DSP processor should take the benefits, as well as the losses, of DSP into account, although that is more difficult (!) to do quantitatively.
 

Sal1950

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I hope that time can be found to really understand the functioning of this unit (I mean from a user's point of view) and try out the ARC DSP, at least subjectively, in Amir's system. With any room correction device, it is inevitable that some headroom loss and perhaps a little distortion will be tradeoffs for improved (flatter) frequency response obtained through DSP. Of course, one hopes losses will be small, maybe even inaudible. I do think that reviewing a DSP processor should take the benefits, as well as the losses, of DSP into account, although that is more difficult (!) to do quantitatively.
I see your an Anthem owner and it looks to me your requesting the unit be evaluated under different conditions than have been used in the past.
We all understand the complications of building AV products but that in the end doesn't excuse the designer for not offering the DAC performance of a $100 stand alone, or the same situation when measuring the amplifier sections.
It really isn't that difficult, Denon has accomplished really decent performance in some very inexpensive products since they decided to apply themselves to the task.
There's also the fact that ASR isn't a subjective reviewing site. Speakers can be relatively easy for a trained ear to present some fairly accurate subjective evaluations. But this is 2021, DAC's and amps are mature products with the differences between properly designed products being extremely subtle, if existing at all when listened to under controlled conditions. If either have audible problems, someone in engineering blew it, and sadly this has happened all to often in AV products.
Then we come to the DRC portion of the products, how do you do a subjective eval of the end result when it's whole reason for inclusion is to modify the audible output of the unit? And the end result is completely dependent on the operators use of the software. o_O
I may be wrong but I believe Amir will continue to walk the path he has from day one.
Cheers,
Sal
 

Mike-48

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We all understand the complications of building AV products but that in the end doesn't excuse the designer for not offering the DAC performance of a $100 stand alone, or the same situation when measuring the amplifier sections.
Of course DACs should be competently designed, and so should amplifiers. Still, sometimes it's not so important whether something's artifacts are at -100 dB vs. -130 dB, if the unit can help remove or reduce 20 dB swings in frequency response. If hypothetically a $100 DAC is 20 dB better but neither unit has audible artifacts, I consider absolute numbers less important than the DSP functionality. That's why I think it's worth listening, even though it's subjective.

Still, I have used audio-only DSP units (at least 4 besides the current Anthem), which have performed well objectively. In contrast, audio performance of the AVRs I've seen tested here has been shockingly bad. I hope no one thinks I'm debating or defending that.

The other issue is that DSP-based units typically are complex to set up and operate, and one can obtain misleading or noncomparable test results easily. If I remember the AVM 60 review correctly, it did seem possible that the tested unit was broken or incompletely set up.

Listening tests are as important for DSP-based units as they are for headphone amps or speakers, IMO. As to ability, if someone can judge a speaker, they can judge a speaker-DSP combination -- the idea is the same. The site owner may feel such tests are beyond the scope of his work, and obviously, that's his right. You are absolutely correct that results depend on competent use of the software. My experience through the years has been that initial use usually does improve in-room sound -- sometimes remarkably -- but a learning curve must be climbed before results are optimal.
 

beagleman

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Of course DACs should be competently designed, and so should amplifiers. Still, sometimes it's not so important whether something's artifacts are at -100 dB vs. -130 dB, if the unit can help remove or reduce 20 dB swings in frequency response. If hypothetically a $100 DAC is 20 dB better but neither unit has audible artifacts, I consider absolute numbers less important than the DSP functionality. That's why I think it's worth listening, even though it's subjective.

Still, I have used audio-only DSP units (at least 4 besides the current Anthem), which have performed well objectively. In contrast, audio performance of the AVRs I've seen tested here has been shockingly bad. I hope no one thinks I'm debating or defending that.

The other issue is that DSP-based units typically are complex to set up and operate, and one can obtain misleading or noncomparable test results easily. If I remember the AVM 60 review correctly, it did seem possible that the tested unit was broken or incompletely set up.

Listening tests are as important for DSP-based units as they are for headphone amps or speakers, IMO. As to ability, if someone can judge a speaker, they can judge a speaker-DSP combination -- the idea is the same. The site owner may feel such tests are beyond the scope of his work, and obviously, that's his right. You are absolutely correct that results depend on competent use of the software. My experience through the years has been that initial use usually does improve in-room sound -- sometimes remarkably -- but a learning curve must be climbed before results are optimal.

So, in essence, you are somewhat saying, "unless something audibly affects or alters the sound", that is what is more important, than a static number?

Not calling you out, but feel somewhat the same, but at the same time feel good design and numbers are "important" also.
 
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Of course DACs should be competently designed, and so should amplifiers. Still, sometimes it's not so important whether something's artifacts are at -100 dB vs. -130 dB, if the unit can help remove or reduce 20 dB swings in frequency response. If hypothetically a $100 DAC is 20 dB better but neither unit has audible artifacts, I consider absolute numbers less important than the DSP functionality. That's why I think it's worth listening, even though it's subjective.

Still, I have used audio-only DSP units (at least 4 besides the current Anthem), which have performed well objectively. In contrast, audio performance of the AVRs I've seen tested here has been shockingly bad. I hope no one thinks I'm debating or defending that.

The other issue is that DSP-based units typically are complex to set up and operate, and one can obtain misleading or noncomparable test results easily. If I remember the AVM 60 review correctly, it did seem possible that the tested unit was broken or incompletely set up.

Listening tests are as important for DSP-based units as they are for headphone amps or speakers, IMO. As to ability, if someone can judge a speaker, they can judge a speaker-DSP combination -- the idea is the same. The site owner may feel such tests are beyond the scope of his work, and obviously, that's his right. You are absolutely correct that results depend on competent use of the software. My experience through the years has been that initial use usually does improve in-room sound -- sometimes remarkably -- but a learning curve must be climbed before results are optimal.

I hope that time can be found to really understand the functioning of this unit (I mean from a user's point of view) and try out the ARC DSP, at least subjectively, in Amir's system. With any room correction device, it is inevitable that some headroom loss and perhaps a little distortion will be tradeoffs for improved (flatter) frequency response obtained through DSP. Of course, one hopes losses will be small, maybe even inaudible. I do think that reviewing a DSP processor should take the benefits, as well as the losses, of DSP into account, although that is more difficult (!) to do quantitatively.
I'm just waiting for any review.
 

Mike-48

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So, in essence, you are somewhat saying, "unless something audibly affects or alters the sound", that is what is more important, than a static number?

Not calling you out, but feel somewhat the same, but at the same time feel good design and numbers are "important" also.
That seems pretty close to what I'm saying, yes.
Good engineering is paramount.
DSP provides benefits that come at a slight cost in objective measures, say SINAD. (I suspect that that's unavoidable.) In looking at a particular device, one might ask, is that cost likely to be audible?
It misses the point, IMO, to consider the cost of DSP without considering the benefit, too.
Measuring in-room FR could be a start to that, or listening. Obviously, they provide different perspectives and are useful in very different ways.
 

Schurter

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So after weeks of reading reviews and YouTube videos and coming across a great deal on avm 60.
If thought it would be a nice upgrade over.my 3600h,

Then I find / read this and now I am confused,
Did I make a mistake?
 

Breedeng

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So after weeks of reading reviews and YouTube videos and coming across a great deal on avm 60.
If thought it would be a nice upgrade over.my 3600h,

Then I find / read this and now I am confused,
Did I make a mistake?
This website uses objective bench measurements to help sort out rankings and recommendations. The AVM 60 didn’t measure well against the newer Denon AVRs. We also look at what Amir calls good engineering hygiene. I look at features, customer service and freedom from bugs and problems. Certainly the AVM 60 has worked through its buggy phase. But, Oh my, the AVM70/90 journey has been embarrassing for Anthem’s QA and customer service failings. Did you make a mistake—probably not any audible ones. Plus you have joined a very very loyal group of Anthem owners.
 

Schurter

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This website uses objective bench measurements to help sort out rankings and recommendations. The AVM 60 didn’t measure well against the newer Denon AVRs. We also look at what Amir calls good engineering hygiene. I look at features, customer service and freedom from bugs and problems. Certainly the AVM 60 has worked through its buggy phase. But, Oh my, the AVM70/90 journey has been embarrassing for Anthem’s QA and customer service failings. Did you make a mistake—probably not any audible ones. Plus you have joined a very very loyal group of Anthem owners.
Kinda fell a little better,
I guess lol,
 
OP
amirm

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Quick update. I have measured the AVM70 and am waiting for sign off from Anthem. They are responsive in email now although quite busy. I am hoping to get the go ahead tomorrow or by the end of the week at the latest.
 

laidick

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Quick update. I have measured the AVM70 and am waiting for sign off from Anthem. They are responsive in email now although quite busy. I am hoping to get the go ahead tomorrow or by the end of the week at the latest.
Exciting to know !
 

Descartes

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Quick update. I have measured the AVM70 and am waiting for sign off from Anthem. They are responsive in email now although quite busy. I am hoping to get the go ahead tomorrow or by the end of the week at the latest.
Really looking forward to seeing the review!
 
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