Originally Posted by Rooney
Fitz (& all),
I like Anthem's concept of having a good quality video scaler in the SSP. Now if we could make that a full scale video processor with color management, I'd have my ideal new SSP!
If video performance is really that important to you (it's not to me), you are probably going to get the best video by using an external scaler. Trying to find a pre/pro with the best video performance and audio performance and features combined is going to be well-nigh impossible. Anthem may be as close as you can come, but I personally would not want anything without HDMI 1.3 to avoid potential obsolescence. As Kenny has already explained, 1.3 is not absolutely essential now, but it might be in the future. Then again, it might never be. I think the odds favor that it will be important eventually.
Also, if you want to play SACD's with their native DSD format going to the pre/pro via HDMI (I do), you need at least HDMI 1.2. HDMI 1.3 has higher bandwidth than earlier versions, and it allows the 7.1 lossless Blu-Ray codecs to be sent to the pre/pro in bitstream format, rather than requiring conversion of these formats to PCM in the player. I think this is a good idea, since I expect the pre/pro to do a better bitstream-to-PCM conversion than the player, unless the player is very expensive. Less expensive, basic BR players only output bitstream via HDMI 1.3, not PCM.
I myself am totally satisfied with the REON video processing in my Integra DTC 9.8. I think most pre/pros do no processing of Blu-Ray, just switching/repeating. The video processing is just for less than 1080p sources, DVD and TV, mostly.