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Emotiva XMC-2 Review (AV Processor)

Sal1950

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I can only imagine pressing the remote to change source and not having to wait 14 seconds…
14 seconds is 6 to 8 seconds longer than my XMC-2 takes.
Damn,That majorly sucks!
My Marantz AV7703 Pre/Pro switches between any HDMI input in 2-3 seconds.
 

RichB

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Damn,That majorly sucks!
My Marantz AV7703 Pre/Pro switches between any HDMI input in 2-3 seconds.

HMDI used to be bad and 2.0 made it much worse.
My 3700H takes about 5 seconds to switch.

- Rich
 

Jbrunwa

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HMDI used to be bad and 2.0 made it much worse.
My 3700H takes about 5 seconds to switch.

- Rich
Well, Emotiva advertises bit-perfect video switches, leaving one to wonder if the Denon is bit-imperfect. ;)
 

pseudoid

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HMDI used to be bad and 2.0 made it much worse.
My 3700H takes about 5 seconds to switch.

- Rich
Wait until you come face-to-face with HDMIv2.0b, HDMIv2.1, on an on.
I purchased an Integra pre-pro, when HDMIv1.3 was the thing and the unit had HDMIv1.4.
It nearly broke my heart (and wallet), when I had to retire that workhorse bcuz the 2021 LG OLED had stepped up to HDMIv2.0.
Now my new replacement Rotel pre-pro, is having issues w/HDR when the PC (Intel NUC10) wants to route a movie via this Rotel to the LG.
So, I am truly considering to divorce the Video routing away from my Audio needs.
Like 'separates' for people who have a desire to separate their "A" from the "V".
That is why I like the concept of the AVM Ovation8.3 with plug-in boards (since HDMI is at the physical level, and cannot be upgraded to a future version of itself). But I cannot justify retiring my fresh-minted Rotel for at least a few years.
 

RichB

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Well, Emotiva advertises bit-perfect video switches, leaving one to wonder if the Denon is bit-imperfect. ;)

Actually, Emotiva uses Panasonic chips as well so they are probably more alike than different.

That's marketing for no video processing of the base signal but they do provide an overlay for OSD/OSM.
I'd like them to keep the OSD but ditch the OSM (On Screen Menu) and replace it with a browser interface.

- Rich
 

RichB

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Wait until you come face-to-face with HDMIv2.0b, HDMIv2.1, on an on.
I purchased an Integra pre-pro, when HDMIv1.3 was the thing and the unit had HDMIv1.4.
It nearly broke my heart (and wallet), when I had to retire that workhorse bcuz the 2021 LG OLED had stepped up to HDMIv2.0.
Now my new replacement Rotel pre-pro, is having issues w/HDR when the PC (Intel NUC10) wants to route a movie via this Rotel to the LG.
So, I am truly considering to divorce the Video routing away from my Audio needs.
Like 'separates' for people who have a desire to separate their "A" from the "V".
That is why I like the concept of the AVM Ovation8.3 with plug-in boards (since HDMI is at the physical level, and cannot be upgraded to a future version of itself). But I cannot justify retiring my fresh-minted Rotel for at least a few years.

I don't have issue with my Intel NUC, RMC-1, and LG C1 but I have seen others report similar issues.

It is not cheap, but the HDFury Vertex 2 has 4 HDMI inputs and an output so it can be used to route the video to the display and the audio to the AVP.

D/M (Denon/Marantz), Emotiva, and others use separate HDMI input boards. D/M are factory upgradable, Emotiva has had a user replacement option that I used for the XMC-1. Though, that upgrade was not without issue. I expect manufacturers of the more expensive products to offer HDMI 2.1 upgrades. If Emotiva offers an HDMI 2.1 board, I'll do it because I like to try beta releases.

If I could marry and HDFury, and a multi-channel high-performance DAC like the Okto 8 with some integrated REW DSP functions, I might just jump off the AVP train. However, I think HDMI.org and manufacturers are addicted to hardware churn and consumer misery :p

- Rich
 

rccarguy

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Wait until you come face-to-face with HDMIv2.0b, HDMIv2.1, on an on.
I purchased an Integra pre-pro, when HDMIv1.3 was the thing and the unit had HDMIv1.4.
It nearly broke my heart (and wallet), when I had to retire that workhorse bcuz the 2021 LG OLED had stepped up to HDMIv2.0.
Now my new replacement Rotel pre-pro, is having issues w/HDR when the PC (Intel NUC10) wants to route a movie via this Rotel to the LG.
So, I am truly considering to divorce the Video routing away from my Audio needs.
Like 'separates' for people who have a desire to separate their "A" from the "V".
That is why I like the concept of the AVM Ovation8.3 with plug-in boards (since HDMI is at the physical level, and cannot be upgraded to a future version of itself). But I cannot justify retiring my fresh-minted Rotel for at least a few years.

That's why I hate the HDMI system. Way back you had seperate audio and video. Composite video and coaxial audio? No problem. Update to new TV, S-Video & Coaxial? No problem. Update to new TV with SCART RGB or Component, with coaxial audio? No problem. Update to 720p HDMI with coaxial audio? No problem. Update to HDMI 1080p with coaxial audio? No problem. Update again to HDMI 4K with coaxial audio? No problem.
 

CygnusX

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short version, i "love" my xmc-2 so much that i just ordered a denon 8500HA, the day the 8500 arrives the xmc will go on craigslist, i was about to pull the trigger on the monoprice htp1, but the similarities to the xmc2 has me worried that its another unfinished product

long story.:

i was so happy last xmas when the wife got me an xmc-2 and xpa 11 channel amp, things quickly changed though.

im used to pulling my new toy out of the box and just use it, but the xmc-2 had me waiting almost 2 weeks before dirac was registered and ready to use

i hate this thing so much, its glitchy, its slow, it makes nasty noises when mp3, flac ets changes sampling and or bitrate, god forbid your a little too fast on the humongous remote, and you might just crash it....sometimes theres sound from the tv (ARC) sometimes theres not, sometimes there will be brief sound and then it will go away.....sometimes the tv cant find the amp....result is minutes spent switching input in hopes of not having to crawl on all fours to turn it off, wait 30+ seconds to turn on and then another 2 minutes for it to boot.....

kids and wife are so tired of it, that they just go straight to internal tv speaker (lg cx) if they get no sound, or go to the den and just watch on the crappy vizio and pioneer 503, all of which works every single time. for a while i had the 503 in the movie room as i tried to figure out what was going on, but the pioneer worked great, no issues what so ever...it even calibrated just fine using the XPA amp to drive the 3 fronts freeing up some height channels

i have had many surround receivers through the years (pioneer, onkyo, nad, sony and yamaha) all have worked great, and only got upgraded cause a new codec like atmos came out....i figured the emotiva would be an ok bet, its has the number "2" in its name so most gremlins must have been figured out right ? i saw their forums and theres a lot of activity which i thought was great. so i took a chance bought tons of XLR cables, and other goodies to get it up and running....

customer service is fast to point you to their forums, which on the surface sounds like a good thing. until you realize theres thousands of pages, if you ask a question, it gets moved to one of the hundred pages longs threads. have fun spending endless hours sifting through endless threads that in the end might get you no where or you will be barked at for asking a question that was already dealt with on page 233 out of 400 pages. god forbid you complain or bring awareness to an issue, those posts might just vanish, or the fanbois will come after you (usually telling you that just how it is and all the other brands have issues too)

the Dirac calibration, omg it had me frothing around the mouth....after hours of trying to get the software to find the amp, it finally happened and i could run my first calibration. it took about 45 minutes to through all speakers, and then the amp or raberrypi they use froze, amp had crashed, and a minute later Dirac on the pc crashed and or stopped responding. Finally after spending most of the day trying to get it all done it turns out the amp+rasberrypi has to be freshly rebooted and has to have been off for 30+ seconds for the ethernet to be truly reset, so a quick off wait 5-10 secs like with a pc is a no go......i have tried many calibrations, but my initial manual calibration with db meter and measuring tape still sounds better.

im afraid im going to damage my speakers one day when i loud listen to music and the amp inserts one of it pops/crackles etc

so here i am, i gave the xmc-2 and emotiva a year to see if they could fix/improve their product...but they have not....
 

rccarguy

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short version, i "love" my xmc-2 so much that i just ordered a denon 8500HA, the day the 8500 arrives the xmc will go on craigslist, i was about to pull the trigger on the monoprice htp1, but the similarities to the xmc2 has me worried that its another unfinished product

long story.:

i was so happy last xmas when the wife got me an xmc-2 and xpa 11 channel amp, things quickly changed though.

im used to pulling my new toy out of the box and just use it, but the xmc-2 had me waiting almost 2 weeks before dirac was registered and ready to use

i hate this thing so much, its glitchy, its slow, it makes nasty noises when mp3, flac ets changes sampling and or bitrate, god forbid your a little too fast on the humongous remote, and you might just crash it....sometimes theres sound from the tv (ARC) sometimes theres not, sometimes there will be brief sound and then it will go away.....sometimes the tv cant find the amp....result is minutes spent switching input in hopes of not having to crawl on all fours to turn it off, wait 30+ seconds to turn on and then another 2 minutes for it to boot.....

kids and wife are so tired of it, that they just go straight to internal tv speaker (lg cx) if they get no sound, or go to the den and just watch on the crappy vizio and pioneer 503, all of which works every single time. for a while i had the 503 in the movie room as i tried to figure out what was going on, but the pioneer worked great, no issues what so ever...it even calibrated just fine using the XPA amp to drive the 3 fronts freeing up some height channels

i have had many surround receivers through the years (pioneer, onkyo, nad, sony and yamaha) all have worked great, and only got upgraded cause a new codec like atmos came out....i figured the emotiva would be an ok bet, its has the number "2" in its name so most gremlins must have been figured out right ? i saw their forums and theres a lot of activity which i thought was great. so i took a chance bought tons of XLR cables, and other goodies to get it up and running....

customer service is fast to point you to their forums, which on the surface sounds like a good thing. until you realize theres thousands of pages, if you ask a question, it gets moved to one of the hundred pages longs threads. have fun spending endless hours sifting through endless threads that in the end might get you no where or you will be barked at for asking a question that was already dealt with on page 233 out of 400 pages. god forbid you complain or bring awareness to an issue, those posts might just vanish, or the fanbois will come after you (usually telling you that just how it is and all the other brands have issues too)

the Dirac calibration, omg it had me frothing around the mouth....after hours of trying to get the software to find the amp, it finally happened and i could run my first calibration. it took about 45 minutes to through all speakers, and then the amp or raberrypi they use froze, amp had crashed, and a minute later Dirac on the pc crashed and or stopped responding. Finally after spending most of the day trying to get it all done it turns out the amp+rasberrypi has to be freshly rebooted and has to have been off for 30+ seconds for the ethernet to be truly reset, so a quick off wait 5-10 secs like with a pc is a no go......i have tried many calibrations, but my initial manual calibration with db meter and measuring tape still sounds better.

im afraid im going to damage my speakers one day when i loud listen to music and the amp inserts one of it pops/crackles etc

so here i am, i gave the xmc-2 and emotiva a year to see if they could fix/improve their product...but they have not....

Sounds awful.

Which is strange as I've got a AV pre that was made by the same people (Tonewinner AT-300) And it's pretty much fine, a few minor minor issues but nothing like yours, and 4x cheaper also.
 

muslhead

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short version, i "love" my xmc-2 so much that i just ordered a denon 8500HA, the day the 8500 arrives the xmc will go on craigslist, i was about to pull the trigger on the monoprice htp1, but the similarities to the xmc2 has me worried that its another unfinished product

long story.:

i was so happy last xmas when the wife got me an xmc-2 and xpa 11 channel amp, things quickly changed though.

im used to pulling my new toy out of the box and just use it, but the xmc-2 had me waiting almost 2 weeks before dirac was registered and ready to use

i hate this thing so much, its glitchy, its slow, it makes nasty noises when mp3, flac ets changes sampling and or bitrate, god forbid your a little too fast on the humongous remote, and you might just crash it....sometimes theres sound from the tv (ARC) sometimes theres not, sometimes there will be brief sound and then it will go away.....sometimes the tv cant find the amp....result is minutes spent switching input in hopes of not having to crawl on all fours to turn it off, wait 30+ seconds to turn on and then another 2 minutes for it to boot.....

kids and wife are so tired of it, that they just go straight to internal tv speaker (lg cx) if they get no sound, or go to the den and just watch on the crappy vizio and pioneer 503, all of which works every single time. for a while i had the 503 in the movie room as i tried to figure out what was going on, but the pioneer worked great, no issues what so ever...it even calibrated just fine using the XPA amp to drive the 3 fronts freeing up some height channels

i have had many surround receivers through the years (pioneer, onkyo, nad, sony and yamaha) all have worked great, and only got upgraded cause a new codec like atmos came out....i figured the emotiva would be an ok bet, its has the number "2" in its name so most gremlins must have been figured out right ? i saw their forums and theres a lot of activity which i thought was great. so i took a chance bought tons of XLR cables, and other goodies to get it up and running....

customer service is fast to point you to their forums, which on the surface sounds like a good thing. until you realize theres thousands of pages, if you ask a question, it gets moved to one of the hundred pages longs threads. have fun spending endless hours sifting through endless threads that in the end might get you no where or you will be barked at for asking a question that was already dealt with on page 233 out of 400 pages. god forbid you complain or bring awareness to an issue, those posts might just vanish, or the fanbois will come after you (usually telling you that just how it is and all the other brands have issues too)

the Dirac calibration, omg it had me frothing around the mouth....after hours of trying to get the software to find the amp, it finally happened and i could run my first calibration. it took about 45 minutes to through all speakers, and then the amp or raberrypi they use froze, amp had crashed, and a minute later Dirac on the pc crashed and or stopped responding. Finally after spending most of the day trying to get it all done it turns out the amp+rasberrypi has to be freshly rebooted and has to have been off for 30+ seconds for the ethernet to be truly reset, so a quick off wait 5-10 secs like with a pc is a no go......i have tried many calibrations, but my initial manual calibration with db meter and measuring tape still sounds better.

im afraid im going to damage my speakers one day when i loud listen to music and the amp inserts one of it pops/crackles etc

so here i am, i gave the xmc-2 and emotiva a year to see if they could fix/improve their product...but they have not....
Amen, brother.
Thanks for detailing your love. I love mine, just as much :)
 

Sal1950

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Man that sucks, but yet another horror story about Emo AV's.
There's no guarantees in life but I believe you should be happy with that Denon
I've owned a string of Marantz pre/pro's and not had a serious issue or bug with any,
only changing for updated codexs.
Amirm has given any number of D/M AV's a beating on the bench here, some didn't have the best measurement numbers but I can't remember any giving him a headache in normal use.
Don't feel too bad, 2021 was a horrid year in some ways much more serious.
And BTW, welcome to Audio Science Review!
 

JRS

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That's a shame. By their claims and spec sheets I used to think Emotiva is real high end but budget company. But seemingly they enqueue with the other average consumer products. That's good marketing for you. Nothing special to see there.

The only thing I can hope for is that manufacturers improve their designs after getting such reviews. A 3000 $ processor getting beaten by the secondary pre outs of a 1200 $ Denon AVR speaks volumes.
I think Monoprice will fill that niche. There 1 channel AVP blows away the competition at the price point (4k). I know Amir's sample was no great shakes, but they have been refining it for 18months, and according to Audioholics and SoundandVision reviews which were complimentary to gushing, it's ready for prime time. I know that's what I'm saving for when I go immersive.
 

Dj7675

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short version, i "love" my xmc-2 so much that i just ordered a denon 8500HA, the day the 8500 arrives the xmc will go on craigslist, i was about to pull the trigger on the monoprice htp1, but the similarities to the xmc2 has me worried that its another unfinished product

long story.:

i was so happy last xmas when the wife got me an xmc-2 and xpa 11 channel amp, things quickly changed though.

im used to pulling my new toy out of the box and just use it, but the xmc-2 had me waiting almost 2 weeks before dirac was registered and ready to use

i hate this thing so much, its glitchy, its slow, it makes nasty noises when mp3, flac ets changes sampling and or bitrate, god forbid your a little too fast on the humongous remote, and you might just crash it....sometimes theres sound from the tv (ARC) sometimes theres not, sometimes there will be brief sound and then it will go away.....sometimes the tv cant find the amp....result is minutes spent switching input in hopes of not having to crawl on all fours to turn it off, wait 30+ seconds to turn on and then another 2 minutes for it to boot.....

kids and wife are so tired of it, that they just go straight to internal tv speaker (lg cx) if they get no sound, or go to the den and just watch on the crappy vizio and pioneer 503, all of which works every single time. for a while i had the 503 in the movie room as i tried to figure out what was going on, but the pioneer worked great, no issues what so ever...it even calibrated just fine using the XPA amp to drive the 3 fronts freeing up some height channels

i have had many surround receivers through the years (pioneer, onkyo, nad, sony and yamaha) all have worked great, and only got upgraded cause a new codec like atmos came out....i figured the emotiva would be an ok bet, its has the number "2" in its name so most gremlins must have been figured out right ? i saw their forums and theres a lot of activity which i thought was great. so i took a chance bought tons of XLR cables, and other goodies to get it up and running....

customer service is fast to point you to their forums, which on the surface sounds like a good thing. until you realize theres thousands of pages, if you ask a question, it gets moved to one of the hundred pages longs threads. have fun spending endless hours sifting through endless threads that in the end might get you no where or you will be barked at for asking a question that was already dealt with on page 233 out of 400 pages. god forbid you complain or bring awareness to an issue, those posts might just vanish, or the fanbois will come after you (usually telling you that just how it is and all the other brands have issues too)

the Dirac calibration, omg it had me frothing around the mouth....after hours of trying to get the software to find the amp, it finally happened and i could run my first calibration. it took about 45 minutes to through all speakers, and then the amp or raberrypi they use froze, amp had crashed, and a minute later Dirac on the pc crashed and or stopped responding. Finally after spending most of the day trying to get it all done it turns out the amp+rasberrypi has to be freshly rebooted and has to have been off for 30+ seconds for the ethernet to be truly reset, so a quick off wait 5-10 secs like with a pc is a no go......i have tried many calibrations, but my initial manual calibration with db meter and measuring tape still sounds better.

im afraid im going to damage my speakers one day when i loud listen to music and the amp inserts one of it pops/crackles etc

so here i am, i gave the xmc-2 and emotiva a year to see if they could fix/improve their product...but they have not....
I had the X8500 and it was about a bullet proof as it gets. You and the family will love it I am sure.
 

Jbrunwa

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I had the X8500 and it was about a bullet proof as it gets. You and the family will love it I am sure.
I have an XMC-2 that works well except for input switching times and elevated bass, an AVR-3700H that works well, and tried an AVR-X8500HA that I had to return due to annoying dropouts when processing Atmos audio. Hope yours is better.
 

CygnusX

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I have an XMC-2 that works well except for input switching times and elevated bass, an AVR-3700H that works well, and tried an AVR-X8500HA that I had to return due to annoying dropouts when processing Atmos audio. Hope yours is better.
ok not happy to hear that, hmm the 8500ha has not shipped (they are backordered) should i cancel....when would your 8500ha have issues ?
 

Jbrunwa

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ok not happy to hear that, hmm the 8500ha has not shipped (they are backordered) should i cancel....when would your 8500ha have issues ?
Any time that I played an atmos soundtrack from blu-ray or Atv4k, there were random repeating audio dropouts starting slowly and gradually increasing in speed like stutters while video was unaffected. Then it might play a half hour or more just fine, then happen again. The 3700H played the exact same content flawlessly. Support asked me to reset and restore factory settings but it didn’t resolve. Maybe it was just a bad unit I don’t know. Since I bought from denon.com Denon gave me a full refund upon returning so the only thing I lost was some of my time and the hassle of driving the box to a FedEx pickup locationthat accepted packages that weigh over 50 pounds, the closest FedEx partner couldn’t take it.
 

CygnusX

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thanks guys for the kind words....they get deleted over there on the EMO forums.....here i get to went a bit, thank you ! i could tell about so many many many more issues...theres good stuff too, just not enough to outweigh the bad

i was ok with it being complicated to set up, figuring out boot order for CEC to work, figuring out how to get dirac and all going....its annoying but ok as its a one time thing right

but saturday it took two reboots, one because i was adjusting surround level down, and each click takes 1 sec to register, so im used to click it 5-10 times rapidly, and then it does it thing over the next 5-10 seconds.....but i switched surround mode too while it was still adjusting level and crash....on a fresh reboot i had no sound from tv....switched over to shield it worked, back to tv...it hung for a second and went unresponsive...on second reboot all was good but it took like 5 minutes before we could actually start the movie

like the idea of dirac, and got the xmc-2 because of it. and it seems like its being adopted by more brands......maybe i should cancel the 8500 and just wait for the whole hdmi 2.1 to be sorted and for other options become available...the reason for the denon instead of something else is down to the fact i just want it to work....turn on tv and watch a movie and not spend 10 minutes on the floor with a flashlight

i mean the HTP1 is an option, but covid19 has left me with headaches and severe concentration problems. so i dont feel like reading 800 pages on some forum to see if it suffers from issues as well.
 

pseudoid

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And BTW, welcome to Audio Science Review!
Yeah, Sal1950, "welcome".
And inquiring minds want to know what you think of Dolby Atmos?
Is there a "ban da" red-cross on Atmos, like on MQA???
 

Sal1950

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Yeah, Sal1950, "welcome".
Are you asking me?
I've had Atmos here for close to 3 years now.
Original discrete Atmos music mixes are incredible,
A little too much marketing rush going on with the streamers doing upmixing of 5.1 files to get content.
But I believe it will work itself out with Atmos becoming the future of mass music.
And IMO that's a very good thing.
 

Sal1950

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Maybe it was just a bad unit I don’t know.
I got to think it may have been defective.
Don't know about you but I did just do some google for similar issues but didn't find any.
like the idea of dirac, and got the xmc-2 because of it. and it seems like its being adopted by more brands......maybe i should cancel the 8500 and just wait for the whole hdmi 2.1 to be sorted and for other options become available
That's up to you, Dirac is an excellent DRC but it's going to come at a price.
The full suite of Live Full and Bass Management will tag an extra $600 to just about any AV with the exception of five figure Storms, etc.
Im curious why are you going for the monster 8500, channels, amp power, features?
 
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