Originally Posted by Z Man
Greg, I couldn't have put it any better.
I have to say I agree with you 100 percent.
Yes, right now the Integra and Denon are the only ones to offer all the decoding goodies. And the Denon is the only pre/pro in the high end realm to offer everything it does. The other high end players out there are definitely coming out the gate soon, but will still be somewhat stripped. They will no doubt offer superb sound quality, but like you said is that nth degree of sonic improvement enough to justify spending $35,000 on a pre/pro that doesn't have all the goodies.
HDMI 1.3 is IMO a "must have" feature at this point in time. 1.3 is now becoming the standard, and as such more and more products are offering it, and will be standard on all Blu-ray machines. The ML 502 is being released with either HDMI 1.1 or possibly 1.2, is to me something that shouldn't be. At least the Classe' SSP-800 will be 1.3a, which is a big step in the right direction. And hopefully Classe' makes good on their promise to offer a free upgrade to include the HBR decoders by years end. I know that if spring or summer of '09 rolls around and still no upgrade, there are going to be a lot of very unhappy people who bought SSP-800's because they were told of an upgrade.
I just know that I'm happy I have my Denon AVP now. I'm able to enjoy any soundtrack from any movie, Blu-ray and HD DVD. Plus I get a product that can accept streamed flac, WMA Lossless, and WAV. Plus it's a fully balanced dual differential preamp that sounds every bit as good as I was hoping it would. So sometimes being an early adopter is a good choice, as the Denon has left me wanting nothing.
Well Seth, that is it. Just listening to your happiness and satisfaction of the Denon, says it all to me. Sometimes, I think, we get much to caught up in the equipment. Don`t get me wrong, I love the equipment, or I would not be posting on this forum. However, what I want to do ultimately is enjoy the music. And if something is going to hinder me from doing that, I have a problem!!