Monday, March 31, 2014

"The perfect setup for someone wanting great sound on a modest budget." TONEAudio, MRX 510

Jeff Dorgay of TONEAudio was looking for a great 5.1 system including electronics under $5,000. Lucky for us, with the new MRX receivers and our sister company Paradigm, we were able fulfill their wish. We decided to ship them the middle of the line MRX 510 as well as Paradigm Monitor 9, Center 3, Surround 1 and SUB 10. Rob Johnson and Jeff Dorgay completed the system review and published it in Issue 62 of TONEAudio magazine.

"It's a level of detail and delicacy that I hadn't been expecting."

"Paradigm and Anthem both produce quality audio equipment at reasonable prices - Anthem on the component side and Paradigm on the speaker side. The two sister companies (to which MartinLogan is also a sister company) are based in Ontario, Canada, and their complementary product lines allow buyers to piece together a home-theater system with speakers and componentry that pair well together."

A Beautiful Friendship
"Anthem's MRX 510 receiver proves an ideal match for the Paradigms. While we don't use its 7.1-channel capability, we certainly make full use of its 100 watts per channel of power for the 5.1-channel system."

"The two HDMI video outputs render a wonderful picture... use the HDMI inputs and outputs wherever possible for the best results. The sound and picture will benefit significantly." 

On with the Show
"The opening scenes of James Bond films always dazzle the viewer with action sequences, and
Quantum of Solace on Blu-ray does not disappoint. The sounds of car chases, machine guns, and explosions complement the visuals wonderfully. The shattering of a windshield during a particularly nasty car collision surprises me with the subtle tinkle of glass raining down on metal and concrete. It’s a level of detail and delicacy that I hadn’t been expecting."

"The full-room feel of music is great for a party. The event host can reduce the volume of music to facilitate conversation among guests, yet make the music audible in all corners of the room."

"In stereo mode, Stevie Ray Vaughan and Double Trouble’s Blues at Sunrise retain solid sonic imaging across the width of the perceived stage, with layering in the distance."

"While more expensive stereo or home-theater equipment may offer greater realism and detail, the price-to-performance ratio of this whole system is exceptional. The Anthem proves a great complement to the Paradigms, providing plenty of punch and sonic synergy so that no particular frequency range stands out in the mix."      
"20 minutes of measurements has the whole system rocking... Fantastic!"
"Go ahead, make my day." 
"While $5,000 is certainly not chump change, in the world of hi-fi that investment often only gets you one stereo component. Alternately, that same money can provide a complete home-theater setup that offers great quality, performance, and value."

"For those seeking a single home audio/video solution, this Anthem/Paradigm combo gets you the best of both worlds: a solid two-channel setup and a 5.1 surround- sound system—just add audio and video sources. Plus, with unobtrusive looks and the ability to hide the subwoofer, you’ll forget the system is even in the room so you can get lost in the depths of a movie."

Additional Listening - by Jeff Dorgay
I’ve got about five grand to spend for everything. Can I get a killer home-theater system for that much?” Yes you can. At the numerous tradeshows I’ve attended around the world, Paradigm and Anthem always have the most impressive displays with systems offering performance on a level I’d expect from gear with much, much bigger price tags."

"The system you see here is no exception. I’d pay $1,600 just for the room-correction portion of the MRX 510, and you get seven channels of amplification and a video processor thrown in! My living room has dreadful sonic properties: hardwood floors, wood-plank ceiling, and a leather couch and chair, along with a big glass coffee table. But 20 minutes of measurements with the ARC (Anthem Room Correction) technology has the whole system rocking with movies and music. Fantastic!

"As a home-theater neophyte, I appreciate Anthem’s great manual and ease of setup. You probably won’t have to hire the geek squad to hook this baby up, and all of the on-screen menus are very logical, as well. In short, this is the perfect setup for someone wanting great sound on a modest budget. Best of all, Anthem and Paradigm are sister companies, so you know everything will work well together.

 Click here! & download Issue 62 of TONEAudio for the review.
Click here! for more info on Anthem's MRX 510.

Thursday, March 20, 2014

"Regardless of your budget, you owe it to yourself to put the Anthem 225 on your short list to audition" - Luther Ward, Home Theater Shack

Anthem's Integrated 225 was the subject of a recent review by Luther Ward of Home Theater Shack. Known as a separates guy, Luther was a bit hesitant at first glance, but in no time his opinion changed. Below is a summary of his thoughts.

"Anthem as gone to great lengths to build an audiophile class integrated"

"Today that new piece is the Anthem 225 integrated solid state amplifier. For those of you who know me, you’re thinking but you’re a separates guy. Your systems are tubes and mono blocks. Well, you would be right, but remember what I said about keeping an open mind, because you may find something that opens your eyes and ears. The Anthem 225 is one of those pieces of equipment."

Build Quality, Appearance and Functionality
"Anthem has done a fantastic job of keeping it simple and putting their money into design, layout and execution. Part of the weight may be attributed to the solid chassis and aluminum faceplate but most can be found in the massive toroidal transformer and large heat sinks. This isn’t about bling but building an amplifier that will be a solid performer year after year. Not that the 225 isn’t stylish. This is an attractive amplifier, with its anodized faceplate and clean lines that will fit in with the most discriminating audio enthusiast’s system."

"It did not matter what I threw at the Anthem 225, it took it and asked for more"

"Don’t let the minimalist approach to the look fool you into what is underneath this wolf in sheep’s clothing. Anthem has gone to great lengths to build an audiophile class integrated with high quality and close tolerance parts like metal film resistors and high-quality film signal capacitors. Great attention has been spent designing from the ground up with hand laid PCB traces to optimize the ground plain layout and a robust power supply to give the listener a silent black background."

Listening - System 1
"I hit play and listened for the music to start. The tape has a long lead in, so this lets me hear what noise, if any, is coming from the amp. The Anthem 225 is quiet. With nothing to get in the way of the music, the first positive check goes in my notes."

"...the 225 has nice separation giving detail to the many layers in this recording... The 225 again did a nice job in bringing the instruments to life... a nice richness to the bottom end. The imaging is very good... The 225 did not disappoint."

Listening - System 2
"Now it is time to up the tempo, turn up the volume and get some air moving in the room. Here the 225 stepped up to the plate and delivered. The electrostats can be a difficult load to drive and they love power. The 225 brought them to life with a full dynamic sound. From the snare hit... to the driving beat... the sound was solid with a lot of punch, but still blended well with the mid and upper ranges."

Listening - System 3
"Not only did the 225 produce a real soundstage but one with weight to it. Once again the separation between instruments allowed each to be heard individually without smearing or sounding muddy."

"With the 225’s lack of a sonic signature or better yet its neutrality, the 225 allowed Diana’s voice to shine through. It felt very intimate, like a smoky bar. The bass line intro to “Peel Me a Grape” was tight and Diana’s piano crisp. The laid back tracks were a great way to slow down, relax and enjoy the end to my listening session."

"The Anthem 225 reminded me to not think “been there, done that.” To get over myself and keep an open mind. If I had not, I would have missed out. There is a lot of bang for your buck here. Regardless of your budget, you owe it to yourself to put the Anthem 225 on your short list to audition. I feel it is a real value and has the versatility to fit in almost any system."

"It did not matter what I threw at the Anthem 225, it took it and asked for more. It has the power to drive the most demanding speaker and the accuracy and transparency to not get in the way of the music. Add the ease of a plug and play setup and the Anthem 225 is one of the affordable gems in audio."

Click here! to read the full review from Home Theater Shack.
Click here! for more info on the Anthem Integrated 225.

Thursday, March 13, 2014

Home Cinema Choice gives the MRX 510 a 5 star review, Best Buy award & cover of the April issue

Adrian Justins of Home Cinema Choice magazine in the UK reviewed the MRX 510. Not only did the MRX 510 earn a 5 star review, he also gave it the Home Cinema Choice "Best Buy" award and it made the cover of the April 2014 issue! (See below)

Anthem's MRX 510 on the cover of Home Cinema Choice April 2014 issue

ARC over Bells and Whistles
"This is no flawed logic from the Canada-based company, given that the experience of streaming and networking on an AVR often falls short of that offered by many external devices. Instead of all those distractions, the company entices buyers with its Anthem Room Correction (ARC) feature, which ups the ante massively in the calibration stakes for a consumer AVR."

"The flip side to this reduced feature count is that ARC has been revamped and improved, and now runs on a network-connected Windows laptop rather than the ponderously slow RS232C conduit of before."

Cleanly Styled
"Another area which is greatly improved is the design of the AVR. The fascia is now cleaner with low-profile buttons and a symmetrical layout. The dot matrix display does exactly what you’d want it to. All in all, it's very nice."

"Overall, it's impossible not to recommend the MRX 510 enough."

"The same sense of aesthetic satisfaction applies to the menu system. The GUI lacks fancy icons but comprises a logically laid out list of contents with a clear font and a neat red-and-white colour scheme. Everything is highly legible and easy to adjust using the remote."

Ultimate Control
5 Stars for the MRX 510!
"You can choose to run the MRX 510 with ARC off, but why would you? That'd be like trying to drive down the Kirkstone Pass in neutral. Without braking. Put simply, the control it exerts when added is profound."

"The beauty here is that the low-end impact feels immense but the Anthem's total authority means every element of the soundstage is perfectly optimised."

"Overall, it’s impossible not to recommend the MRX 510 enough. For an AVR, sonic performance is of paramount importance, and the Anthem's full-bodied, tight and atmospheric aural delivery makes it an imperative purchase."

Click here! to read the MRX 510 review by Home Cinema Choice.
Click here! for more info on Anthem's MRX a/v receivers.

Monday, March 10, 2014

"Anthem’s MRX 710 is about as close to separates as an A/V receiver gets" - Digital Trends

Caleb Denison got "up close" with our MRX 710 in a recent article posted on Digital Trends...

"It took a while for Anthem to update its first A/V receiver line, but the update that finally did come represented a considerable leap forward from what was an already very solid product offering. The flagship of Anthem’s new line is the MRX 710, an absolute powerhouse with some of today’s more critical modern functions and, perhaps more impressively, the best commercially available room-correction rig we’ve ever used (and we’ve used them all). Essentially, the MRX 710 is about as close as you can get to separates in an A/V receiver. In fact, we think it would make an outstanding pre-amp!"

A full review of the MRX 710 will follow soon. Stay tuned!

Click here! for Digital Trends "Up Close" with the MRX 710.
Click here! for more info on Anthem's MRX series.

Friday, March 7, 2014

Anthem's MRX 510 & MRX 710 win Best Choice Reference Awards & 5 Star reviews from HD Fever

Both the Anthem MRX 510 and MRX 710 received fantastic reviews from HD Fever in France. Both products even managed to earn HD Fever “Best Choice Reference” 5 star awards! Below is a quick summary from HD Fever (in both languages)!
Conclusion En français...
"Les MRX510 et MRX710 sont clairement des amplificateurs Home Cinéma qui sortent du lot. Alors que la concurrence va centraliser un grand nombre de prestations et accentuer la complexité de l’électronique, Anthem reste proche des fondamentaux. Il en résulte une machine à la conception professionnelle, tant par sa construction que par les outils dont elle dispose. Une chose est certaine, ce sont des amplis qui transcendent une séance home cinéma, capables de mettre sans dessus-dessous votre salon, capable de faire frissonner, étonner, impressionner les auditeurs par des capacités de percussions tonitruantes lors des scènes d’actions, de reproduction des dialogues, de tenue en puissance, de maitrise, et de spatialisation tout simplement superbes ! Vu que la récompense ne porte que sur les performances audio en home cinéma, c’est donc sans hésiter un Award Reference HDfever."
Conclusion via Google Translate from French to English...
The MRX510 and MRX710 are clearly amplifiers home theater that stand out. While the competition will centralize many benefits and increase the complexity of the electronics, Anthem remains close to fundamentals. The result is a machine professional design, both structurally and tools at its disposal. One thing is certain, they are amps that transcend a home cinema session, able to put upside down your living room, able to thrill, amaze, impress listeners with thundering percussion skills during action scenes, of reproduction of dialogue, held in power, mastery, and spatial simply stunning! Because the reward relates only to the home theater audio performance, so this is definitely an Award Reference HDfever.

Click here! for the original French version of this review from HD Fever.
Click here! for the English version of this review via 'Google Translate'.