SM V3 teaser

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chucky3042

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Hello Chucky!
We know that I have been waiting it out on the sidelines AND I intend to get a unit one of these days.
I check these threads regularly but if you have explained this may it have escaped me.
Why is V3 still 48/24 , couldn't you just wave your magic wand and make it 96/24?
Cheers from postapocalyptic NOLA
Hey Kap'n krunch

Sonic has really done my job again.....thanks Sonik

However in our new mini preamp project we are working with an even more powerful DSP that we will be using with a future SM, its the ADAU1467

 

chucky3042

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Now back to the main game!

We just received the bottom board of the SM3 this morning, the front board will be in a separate delivery with some other mechanical bits.

As evidenced below is Perry who is fast becoming the face of our sister solar company Zenaji p/l . He is just eager to get his teeth stuck into it!!

IMG_20210921_094435.jpg
 

kap'n krunch

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If I read the specs right on the TAS3204 DSP that the SM uses two of, it is locked at 48kHz. So I don't think a magic wand would fix that. Also in regards to a Facebook thread about the SM using 12 bit precision Chucky has a reply that probably might explain his position of higher sample rate:
had no idea about the FB thread! If that's the best that can be gotten, and I am sure it is, so be it, I am not a techie like a lot of you guys , just asking why it was how it was..sometimes the non-techies are the ones that push the envelope and you techies can actually make it real...
 

armyjazzer

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I understand the reluctance over the HDMI crazy licensing costs. It appears to be a Mafia and it continues in audio equipment now with stuff like MQA ( Mafia Qarantined Audio ).

I would be interested in the numbers. If you were to add HDMI out, has anyone done the math on how much additional you would have to charge per unit? If I buy a new receiver with analog inputs, it will cost me an additional $3K on a denon unit. If I pull the Surround Master off my movie surround sound setup, then I have the additional cost of purchasing 2 stereo amplifiers and 4 more speakers ( or have the luxury of pulling the speakers off of the surround and putting them back every time I want to listen to the S.M. ), also I have no preamp/remote volume control with this setup, I would have to get up and use the volume knob on the S.M.

So, I spend a lot of money and have a lot more equipment and speakers setup in my surround room, or shell out a significant more amount of money on a new receiver. Oh, and spend the additional again if that receiver dies or needs to be upgraded ( I already had to ditch one receiver when I bought the original S.M. because the one I had didn't have analog inputs).

If I had a Surround Master with HDMI out, it would save money and connect to a whole lot more of my equipment, and new future equipment that will probably be HDMI also.

So even though I agree with you that they are rediculous with the licensing cost, us consumers are getting the shaft also, because everything is standardizing on HDMI now. I have already paid for a version 1 and version 2 Surround Master. One sits in the box because I upgraded to version 2, now my receiver is dead and I am going to have to spend a lot in order to keep using the second unit.

I think adding HDMI has the potential to save your customers a significant amount of money, and make the S.M. more modern since it would be able to connect to more modern HIFI and home theatre gear ( for example a young person who only has a soundbar system with HDMI, or low end surround system ). For me I would probably buy a V3 if it had HDMI, so it would be nice to know what you would have to charge us per unit if you added it. Maybe you could take a survey and see how many want it and would be willing to pay the additional cost. Maybe most of your users are not Home Theatre users with receivers and don't care about HDMI.

At some point I would think future sales of the product will depend on being able to connect to other current gear. I don't see HDMI being replaced soon, but I don't have a crystal ball. I do really enjoy the Surround Master, it is a great audio product and I would love to see it's users base grow. I guess that will depend on how many young users are willing to spend on the analog equipment for a Quad audio setup or how many prefer to spend on a receiver and Home Theatre setup. Maybe the answer is none of the above! There does appear to be some excitement over Dolby Atmos music, so at least some may be investing in H.T. setups.
 

MidiMagic

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I have seen an HDMI to 7.1 analog adaptor. I think it was $79. But that was a year ago.
 

MagnumX

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Does anyone make a standalone analog multichannel to HDMI adaptor?
The only ones I've seen are 2-channel only units to convert basic old video sources to HDMI.

I've never seen anyone on the Earth make a multi-channel audio to HDMI adapter. If we can't get the SM with HDMI output, perhaps a good separate product would be such an adapter box. I believe the market for such a box may be far greater than the SM itself as everyone with an older RCA out device (including SACD players without HDMI support could make proper use of one.

Even if you have an AVR like I do that still has 7.1 inputs, you lose all EQ, room correction and possibly even basic speaker delays when using it, making sound output noticeably inferior compared to HDMI devices (The bass correction in Audyssey alone is worth it, IMO. I get +/- 2dB real world bass response at the primary listening location with Audyssey turned on. It's considerably less tame without it).

Truly, I'd be a lot more psyched about buying and trying one of these out if I didn't think my 2-channel music was going to go to shite in the process because I can't use room correction for at least bass even.

The simple fact is multi-channel RCA has largely already gone the way of the Dodo. You could potentially have access to a lot more consumers with some kind of HDMI solution even if it's a somewhat pricey adapter.

Retro, however is in. There's enough demand for the LP that phono inputs have reappeared on almost all receivers long after the industry ditched them on all but the flagship products.

Imagine getting some of these new LP customers to try the SM out with it, maybe capitalizing on both quad decoding and multi-channel output for stereo to revitalize the sound. But these people aren't likely using retro receivers. People like me are doing all-in-one home theater plus multi-channel music because it's expensive enough to do one system well, let alone two.

I do have a separate higher-end ribbon speaker system for stereo, but I can't expand it to surround with the same quality speakers. I don't have the room and the Carver speakers haven't been made for decades. I'm certainly not going to go back to 1990s preamps just to support the Surround Master. Thankfully, my current AVR has 7.1 analog inputs, but I've been thinking of upgrading to one that does not (Monoprice HTP-1) since it has 15.2 channel support and even better room correction (DIRAC).
 

jaybird100

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I understand the reluctance over the HDMI crazy licensing costs. It appears to be a Mafia and it continues in audio equipment now with stuff like MQA ( Mafia Qarantined Audio ).

I would be interested in the numbers. If you were to add HDMI out, has anyone done the math on how much additional you would have to charge per unit? If I buy a new receiver with analog inputs, it will cost me an additional $3K on a denon unit. If I pull the Surround Master off my movie surround sound setup, then I have the additional cost of purchasing 2 stereo amplifiers and 4 more speakers ( or have the luxury of pulling the speakers off of the surround and putting them back every time I want to listen to the S.M. ), also I have no preamp/remote volume control with this setup, I would have to get up and use the volume knob on the S.M.

So, I spend a lot of money and have a lot more equipment and speakers setup in my surround room, or shell out a significant more amount of money on a new receiver. Oh, and spend the additional again if that receiver dies or needs to be upgraded ( I already had to ditch one receiver when I bought the original S.M. because the one I had didn't have analog inputs).

If I had a Surround Master with HDMI out, it would save money and connect to a whole lot more of my equipment, and new future equipment that will probably be HDMI also.

So even though I agree with you that they are rediculous with the licensing cost, us consumers are getting the shaft also, because everything is standardizing on HDMI now. I have already paid for a version 1 and version 2 Surround Master. One sits in the box because I upgraded to version 2, now my receiver is dead and I am going to have to spend a lot in order to keep using the second unit.

I think adding HDMI has the potential to save your customers a significant amount of money, and make the S.M. more modern since it would be able to connect to more modern HIFI and home theatre gear ( for example a young person who only has a soundbar system with HDMI, or low end surround system ). For me I would probably buy a V3 if it had HDMI, so it would be nice to know what you would have to charge us per unit if you added it. Maybe you could take a survey and see how many want it and would be willing to pay the additional cost. Maybe most of your users are not Home Theatre users with receivers and don't care about HDMI.

At some point I would think future sales of the product will depend on being able to connect to other current gear. I don't see HDMI being replaced soon, but I don't have a crystal ball. I do really enjoy the Surround Master, it is a great audio product and I would love to see it's users base grow. I guess that will depend on how many young users are willing to spend on the analog equipment for a Quad audio setup or how many prefer to spend on a receiver and Home Theatre setup. Maybe the answer is none of the above! There does appear to be some excitement over Dolby Atmos music, so at least some may be investing in H.T. setups.
While adding HDMI could make sense for some users, there would have to be a whole other major circuit added, a compatible A to D converter. In addition to the cost of. And royalties for, the HDMI, that added A-D converter will drive it up even more. That could make the price to the consumer prohibitive to many potential buyers.
 

Soundfield

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While adding HDMI could make sense for some users, there would have to be a whole other major circuit added, a compatible A to D converter. In addition to the cost of. And royalties for, the HDMI, that added A-D converter will drive it up even more. That could make the price to the consumer prohibitive to many potential buyers.
Yes, Chucky has been through this cost / price argument dozens of times here and must be getting fed up with this whole issue. He has repeatedly made Involve's approach perfectly clear.
 

kfbkfb

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IMHO, one of the best things to have happen would be to include the SM version of QS and SQ logic decoding as an option in most (or all) of the major brands of MCH receivers (QS is said to be an excellent stereo to surround sound "converter").

IIRC, Involve Audio knocked on many doors to try to do this, since MCH receivers include many "decoders" already (DS, DD[+], DTS, DSD etc.), I don't understand the resistance of the MCH receiver makers to license the Involve Audio tech.


Kirk Bayne
 

J. PUPSTER

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Haven’t heard yet if DisplayPort is as expensive to license as HDMI. If not & doable maybe an inexpensive DisplayPort to HDMI adapter could be included ($5-10 passed on to user) and Chucky be yo Uncle, And we’re only talking audio here, not video. But I have no clue on the engineering challenges of that.
HDMI has been discussed many times before, but it could also be a game changer since so few AVR’s have those analog connections anymore.
 

fredblue

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how doable is it to breakout cat5 into HDMI via some outboard little box? an ethernet port on a future SM would be a relatively cheap addition, no?
 

armyjazzer

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Yes, Chucky has been through this cost / price argument dozens of times here and must be getting fed up with this whole issue. He has repeatedly made Involve's approach perfectly clear.
I get it, their numbers of units sold are probably much lower than most other products so it would add more cost to the unit, I just am curious as to what "the number" is. Maybe I missed that in a previous discussion, if so I appologize.

It is amazing that you can buy several products at very reasonable prices that have HDMI. I saw a new Denon receiver on Amazon for $350 with 6 HDMI ports. Sure it is a lower end product, but has HDMI support. Same thing with cheap blu ray players now for around $100. I wish there was a way to get S.M. numbers up so they could support it.

Seriously though, if the license fee is $20k and you sell 1000units that is only $20 per unit. Add in the extra circuits and everything else needed, and how much do you have to add per unit. Even if you only sold 100 units and it added $200 per unit, and the electronics added an additional $100 - 200, it is still much cheaper for me to pay an additional $300-400 than to pay an additional $3000 for a receiver with analog inputs.

Just my input and opinions based on my particular situation. Others may not give a crap about HDMI and don't care about S.M. having it. I sure mean no ill toward Chucky or the Surround Master. As I said before, I love the product, have bought 2 of them, and wish them much success! I just don't see how they can expand their market much without HDMI support.
 
Last edited:

fredblue

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briefly, as don't want to go off piste, there is a workaround of sorts to get a Surround Master to decode in realtime and output the decoding via HDMI, a method that i use pretty much daily and have for many years, however it requires a multichannel audio interface and a computer with HDMI out.

essentially you route the 4.0/5.1 RCA/analogue Outputs from the Surround Master through a multichannel audio interface and use a piece of software on the computer that enables live throughput of the multichannel signals.

i use an old FireWire UltraLite MOTU interface (newer models connect to the Computer via USB) and the "Loopback" App and do basic monitoring with MOTU's CueMix software.

the equipment chain is as follows;

Surround Master
(4.0/5.1 RCA Out)
=> into MOTU audio interface
(FireWire/USB Out)
=> into PC/Mac
(HDMI Out)
=> into HDMI input on the AVR
 

par4ken

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IMHO, one of the best things to have happen would be to include the SM version of QS and SQ logic decoding as an option in most (or all) of the major brands of MCH receivers (QS is said to be an excellent stereo to surround sound "converter").

IIRC, Involve Audio knocked on many doors to try to do this, since MCH receivers include many "decoders" already (DS, DD[+], DTS, DSD etc.), I don't understand the resistance of the MCH receiver makers to license the Involve Audio tech.


Kirk Bayne
Kickbacks from Dolby? The best audio components have always come from small oftentimes niche market manufactures! It's nice if they don't sell out to the mass market big boys!
 

armyjazzer

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Haven’t heard yet if DisplayPort is as expensive to license as HDMI. If not & doable maybe an inexpensive DisplayPort to HDMI adapter could be included ($5-10 passed on to user) and Chucky be yo Uncle, And we’re only talking audio here, not video. But I have no clue on the engineering challenges of that.
HDMI has been discussed many times before, but it could also be a game changer since so few AVR’s have those analog connections anymore.
The display port idea seems interesting. They charge no royalties and only a 5k membership fee to access the standards according to WIKI:


It would be a nice way to stick it to HDMI mafia! You can get a nice short gold plated display port to HDMI adapter on Amazon for around $8.

Of course there is always the issue of designing and building the electronics to add it, and it sounds like there may be no interest in doing this.
 
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