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Anthem AVM70 Review (AV Processor)

peng

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Someone mentioned this in this thread to be the same DAC as in avm90… if true would be impressive but hard to believe they would do so

According to Anthem's peoduct info at launch time, the AVM90 has the AK4499, the SVM70 has the AK4490. The AVM70 apparently (going by memory of what I read so could be wrong) has since used the ES9010K2M because of the shortage of the AK4490 that has better specs.

Link to original data sheets from Oct 2020.

 

gparaskevas

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Hello all,
What is the general feeling or feedback from the owners of avm70 so far on this forum. If any ofcourse.
- Is this unit stable enough for the price tag?
- How good does ARC Genesis work out of the box?
- Any deal breaking bugs or behavior?
- Is Roon still in the making? Will it be Roon ready or Roon tested?
Thanks in advance
George
 

kmidst

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Hey guys, I'll be amending my comments about the Anthem AVR soon. Unfortunately it has developed problems already and I'm in the process of replacing it with a Marantz Cinema 50. I want to wait until after I compare the Marantz to give some impressions. The issues that have started though are my PS5 suddenly won't display through the Anthem AVR but does display connected directly to my TV (it was working fine until a week ago), and there is a noticeable lag anytime switching video sources (also I noticed when using the youtube app on Apple TV that there's also a lag when stopping videos before it goes back to the menu which I don't remember happening before). Also I got a Xbox recently and sometimes when going from a game to the main menu the video signal just drops out completely and I have to switch to a different video source on the AVR and then back again, which is very annoying.
It sucks because I really wanted to like this device (specifically it's the MRX 740 8K). But I will not deal with such problems in a $3100 unit. Thus I am returning it.

Edit: one more problem that is evident. When connecting headphones directly into the Anthem AVR (Audiotechnica ATH-R70x), I would actually get a static shock into my left ear when walking or shuffling. This shock doesn't happen with the headphones using them with any other device.
 
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Descartes

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Hey guys, I'll be amending my comments about the Anthem AVR soon. Unfortunately it has developed problems already and I'm in the process of replacing it with a Marantz Cinema 50. I want to wait until after I compare the Marantz to give some impressions. The issues that have started though are my PS5 suddenly won't display through the Anthem AVR but does display connected directly to my TV (it was working fine until a week ago), and there is a noticeable lag anytime switching video sources (also I noticed when using the youtube app on Apple TV that there's also a lag when stopping videos before it goes back to the menu which I don't remember happening before). Also I got a Xbox recently and sometimes when going from a game to the main menu the video signal just drops out completely and I have to switch to a different video source on the AVR and then back again, which is very annoying.
It sucks because I really wanted to like this device (specifically it's the MRX 740 8K). But I will not deal with such problems in a $3100 unit. Thus I am returning it.

Edit: one more problem that is evident. When connecting headphones directly into the Anthem AVR (Audiotechnica ATH-R70x), I would actually get a static shock into my left ear when walking or shuffling. This shock doesn't happen with the headphones using them with any other device.
Oh whoa! Could it just be a defective unit? Also does it have HDMi 2.1?
 

kmidst

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Oh whoa! Could it just be a defective unit? Also does it have HDMi 2.1?
It could be a defective unit, no way to know if the issues are systemic unless a lot of people get the same things. Being such an expensive unit, there just isn't enough data about it. I think it's doing HDMI 2.1, I have been playing Xbox at what I thought was 4K/120 fps. I'll check again and confirm.
 

Descartes

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It could be a defective unit, no way to know if the issues are systemic unless a lot of people get the same things. Being such an expensive unit, there just isn't enough data about it. I think it's doing HDMI 2.1, I have been playing Xbox at what I thought was 4K/120 fps. I'll check again and confirm.
I thought only the AVM90 has HDMi 2.1 for now they are supposed to upgrade the rest of the line in 2023
 

kmidst

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I thought only the AVM90 has HDMi 2.1 for now they are supposed to upgrade the rest of the line in 2023
That's what I thought was the case too. I have the Xbox video settings on 4K/120, my TV is LG C2 which is a 4K/120 panel. While playing Titanfall 2 I checked the TV information and it said I was at 2160p resolution (4K) and was getting 118 fps in game. *shrug*
 

Parakos

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According to Anthem's peoduct info at launch time, the AVM90 has the AK4499, the SVM70 has the AK4490. The AVM70 apparently (going by memory of what I read so could be wrong) has since used the ES9010K2M because of the shortage of the AK4490 that has better specs.

Link to original data sheets from Oct 2020.

I can also confirm that my AVM70 has the ES9010K2M... Maybe this explains why I'm not too impressed with the sound. The review done by Amir showed how good the unit meassured, thus I was very surprised by all the distortions and clipping I have encountered (several others have repported this behavior too). Maybe they rushed the "swap"?
 
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Beershaun

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Hello all,
What is the general feeling or feedback from the owners of avm70 so far on this forum. If any ofcourse.
- Is this unit stable enough for the price tag?
- How good does ARC Genesis work out of the box?
- Any deal breaking bugs or behavior?
- Is Roon still in the making? Will it be Roon ready or Roon tested?
Thanks in advance
George
I have the MRX1140 so can speak to non-model.specific questions.
ARC Genesis is excellent. I would highly recommend it and the web based virtual input system the Anthem has. I can configure multiple room correction profiles and use any one with any physical input creating a virtual input. So I can use one profile with my firetv for movies as one input and use another profile with the same firetv for music as a separate input.

-Roon: it is still not supported. If Roon is a requirement for you I would not get the Anthem. It's been almost 2 years and no support so I would not buy this unit expecting Roon to be supported in the future.
 

gparaskevas

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Hey @Beershaun ,
For the money I would like to have Roon Ready support, eventually, but it is not a blocker at the moment since I already have a Roon device. What I really care about is:
- ARC Genesis to be functional and supported. So good to know its working ok.
- General performance and functionality: Remote should be functional, input changing should be fast and non problematic. Audio quality should be at least better than my Pioneer sc-lx83. I guess it will be.
- Web Ui is also important since fine tuning a device is much easier with a mouse and a keyboard.
- Fan noise and unit temperature: I would like it to be cool while not being loud. Dont know if you have any input here. I know you have an AVR but the same more or less should apply to the pre/pro

Now since I don't really care about 8k and VRR I will probably buy the current unit at 4500 euros in Greece which is good enough for me. Trinnov was my goal but for the time being and for the listening room I have, I cannot justify such an expense.
Thank you for your answer!
G.
 

Massimo

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I can also confirm that my AVM70 has the ES9010K2M... Maybe this explains why I'm not too impressed with the sound. The review done by Amir showed how good the unit meassured, thus I was very surprised by all the distortions and clipping I have encountered (several others have repported this behavior too). Maybe they rushed the "swap"?
The issue is likely setup or a fault with your unit since several others on AVSFORUM have complained of similar issues with units fitted with the AKM chip.
 

Parakos

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The issue is likely setup or a fault with your unit since several others on AVSFORUM have complained of similar issues with units fitted with the AKM chip.
A fault with the unit I can agree on, but a problem with the setup should not create clipping. If it is setup sensitive then its just plain bad design. Really mad at myself for not returning it within the return window...
 

peng

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I can also confirm that my AVM70 has the ES9010K2M... Maybe this explains why I'm not too impressed with the sound. The review done by Amir showed how good the unit meassured, thus I was very surprised by all the distortions and clipping I have encountered (several others have repported this behavior too). Maybe they rushed the "swap"?

I highly doubt the ES9010K2M is the reason for audible distortions.

According to the data sheets, under the best conditions:

ES9010 K2M: 116 dB DNR, 106 dB SINAD
AK4490: 120 dB DNR, 116 dB SINAD

So while the AK4490's SINAD is likely at least 3 dB better, both seems low enough to be well below the threshold of audibility in most people's applications and rooms.

To me, the reason for wanting the better ICs (not just DAC but the volume control, and opamps too), is the same reason why I would prefer the Purifi power amp modules than the Hypex ones if the prices are not significantly different. One doesn't sound better to me, let alone different, but I would still pay a little more for the Purifi's better specifications.

If you could hear distortions and clipping, I would suggest you investigate that further in case it may be something that can be easily solved, once you know the reasons.
 

JRiggs

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According to Anthem's peoduct info at launch time, the AVM90 has the AK4499, the SVM70 has the AK4490. The AVM70 apparently (going by memory of what I read so could be wrong) has since used the ES9010K2M because of the shortage of the AK4490 that has better specs.

Link to original data sheets from Oct 2020.

The AVM90 has actually never had the AK DAC. At least not any version that’s been available to purchase. The product launch (announcement) and the actual availability of the AVM90 were far from each other.
 

peng

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The AVM90 has actually never had the AK DAC. At least not any version that’s been available to purchase. The product launch (announcement) and the actual availability of the AVM90 were far from each other.

So it seems like "false advertisement" is not an issue for such manufacturers lol.. D+M continued to use the same product info documents to show they had the AKM chip even long after it was known that they started to use the PCM chip since some time in the spring of 2021.
 

kmidst

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Hey @Beershaun ,
For the money I would like to have Roon Ready support, eventually, but it is not a blocker at the moment since I already have a Roon device. What I really care about is:
- ARC Genesis to be functional and supported. So good to know its working ok.
- General performance and functionality: Remote should be functional, input changing should be fast and non problematic. Audio quality should be at least better than my Pioneer sc-lx83. I guess it will be.
- Web Ui is also important since fine tuning a device is much easier with a mouse and a keyboard.
- Fan noise and unit temperature: I would like it to be cool while not being loud. Dont know if you have any input here. I know you have an AVR but the same more or less should apply to the pre/pro

Now since I don't really care about 8k and VRR I will probably buy the current unit at 4500 euros in Greece which is good enough for me. Trinnov was my goal but for the time being and for the listening room I have, I cannot justify such an expense.
Thank you for your answer!
G.

MRX 740 8K
ARC does work great like others said. The remote works great but does have a bit of a cheap plastic feel. Input changing has been a bit slow and flakey in my experience, possible issues with my unit like I posted about earlier. Web UI is very clean and has a lot of options (although initially getting the unit online was difficult). Fan noise - here's the main complaint with this unit, the fan is noticeable when playing at low volume. I liked the unit a lot the first couple weeks I had it, but slowly realized it doesn't seem 100% ready for market and should cost less for what it is. You can get better reliability and more channels for less money. I don't have a good comparison of audio quality yet, will be getting the replacement AVR today.
 

JRiggs

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So it seems like "false advertisement" is not an issue for such manufacturers lol.. D+M continued to use the same product info documents to show they had the AKM chip even long after it was known that they started to use the PCM chip since some time in the spring of 2021.
It would seem that way. Although, I just quickly perused Anthem's AVM 90 web page and didn't see any new specifics regarding the actual DAC. It is using a 32-bit/768kHz ESS Sabre DAC.

Remember, Anthem's press release regarding the AVM 70 and 90 came in October 2020. The same month and year of the AKM factory fire, which coupled with the global pandemic, caused significant supply chain disruption. Regardless, advertising should be updated...The AVM 90 didn't become available for purchase until March 2022.
 

peng

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It would seem that way. Although, I just quickly perused Anthem's AVM 90 web page and didn't see any new specifics regarding the actual DAC. It is using a 32-bit/768kHz ESS Sabre DAC.

Remember, Anthem's press release regarding the AVM 70 and 90 came in October 2020. The same month and year of the AKM factory fire, which coupled with the global pandemic, caused significant supply chain disruption. Regardless, advertising should be updated...The AVM 90 didn't become available for purchase until March 2022.

That was my point too. I know their website currently does not say which dac chips are used. It just seems that whenever they (not just Anthem, but in general, others as well) used, or planning on using a dacs that have better specs than the ones used before, or better than competitors, they would emphasize their choice/use of the better ones, but if it's the opposite way, they would not tell you which ones are being used.

Using Denon/Marantz as example, they went from the better PCM1792, 1791 and the 1795 to the PCM1690 and the AK4358 without saying anything about the change, but when they switched from those lesser chips to the AK4458 and 4490 in around 2016, they made a deal deal, including updating their product sheets to let people know which AKM chips are used. Then they changed from the AK4458 and 4490 (for legit reasons), but when they chose to use the PCM5102A that has lower specs, they again did not say anything or very little about it. Even when people asked, they were still told that it's the AKM chip, and only confirmed the PCM5102 much later.

Again, for the nth time, I am not too worry about the 93 dB SINAD of the 5102A, but am disappointed with the apparent lack of transparency.
 
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