AV-receiver Arcam AVR360
Arcam FMJ AVR360 - almost an exact copy of the older models with the index AVR400. It differs from it only slightly lower (15 watts per channel) output, and under identical design and the functionality. Cute English receiver is a complete switch-amplifier for the modern home theater with any AV-source. A comprehensive set of surround decoders and similar in composition formats support spatial processing are complemented by advanced features on the part of the installation. The unit will play compressed audio files (MP3, FLAC, AAC) via USB, takes Internet radio and allows the connection of an optional docking station for Apple iPod. Of nice bonuses can be noted feature Dolby Volume, designed to equalize the volume from different sources and a small tone correction. Apparently, at the Arcam in the plans for the next five years - to teach your receivers to respond to the voice of their own and connect to the acoustics...
Strict bronzed body with a neat line of buttons and a monochrome fluorescent display with a well-readable characters somehow looks like a box of old "Rolls-Royce" with tinted glass. In general, so nobly. Series FMJ (Faithful Musical Joy), which includes a wide range of audio from the player to the DAC, Arcam marketers positioned as a kind of standard of accuracy in all matters related to reproduction, transformation, and, of course, sound amplification. Claim for high-endnost often makes it impossible to respond adequately to the needs of the market - it is possible to model the speakers over the years, ignoring the flashing formats and increased computing power signal processors, and for such a complex and constantly evolving devices like AV-receiver, the relevance particularly important.
The more pleasant to verify, after a cursory acquaintance with the Arcam AVR360, that even the most inexpensive model is a harmonious symbiosis of modern switching and decoding electronics and good old English audio. A complete set of the latest surround decoders (Dolby TrueHD, DD +, DTS-HD Master Audio), support for major audio compression formats (FLAC, AAC), an impressive array of audio and video interfaces (including five HDMI 1.4a ports), fashionable paraphernalia in the form of compatibility with "apple" players, network connector for twisted-pair port and USB, mandatory for today's theatrical systems "set installer" (RS-232, trigger outputs, an external IR) - as we can see, the device is fully developed. Receiver is equipped with multi-channel analog input 7.1 (called MCH-input) to connect SACD-player, the signal which is subjected to minor changes and adjustments. For music lovers there is a mode Stereo Direct. Through switching video sources through the AVR360 includes an extensive set of potential candidates - in addition to the five HDMI inputs, there are three component video inputs, and onboard scaler converts the image parameters to 1080p/60Hz/24. There is also a digital DAB-tuner in addition to the standard FM/AM. In fact, the modern receiver has long been transformed into a kind of switch your entire home AV-system, and desire nothing more.
Very well looked amplifier part. Power transformer with EI-shaped core at 1 kV*A - the only difference between the power circuit on the design of the older model AVR400 with its fashionable toroidal unit. The official specification contains the power of 5 x 75 W into five channels, and harmonic distortion of 0.2% or 2 x 90 W stereo when loading only the front channels. At the same time, as much as 80 watts of stereo are provided already at quite audiophile 0,02% THD, though, it's not quite clear on what the load of 4 or 8 ohms. Taking into account the efficiency of the push-pull amplifier and a power consumption of 1 kW, these values are very real and more than adequate for typical speaker with a sensitivity of 88-90 dB. Mighty Class AB amplifier modules with paired transistors on a common massive heatsink assure the correctness of the passport numbers. Interestingly, in the specification indicated even quantity of heat to the environment in various modes - useful information for professional installers are often mounted equipment in a rack with a positive heat sink. Seven amplifier channels can be activated in the main zone, and in the multi. For lovers of experiment in pure stereo provided bi-amping connect the front speakers. When bi-amping into the act currently unused amplifier modules surround back channels (Surround Back).
The OSD menu of the receiver does not strike brilliance and shine, it graphically and strictly logical. That there was no need to adjust the configuration settings 7.1 with a tape measure in hand, there is a function of acoustic tuning (in stereo automatic mode does not work), which includes, in addition to the default settings, yet calibration module Room EQ. The latter, as might be expected, automatically smooths the frequency characteristics of the channels with the unpretentious digital 5-band octave equalizer. Complete the setup microphone is connected rather unconventionally - through a small connector AUX jack on the front panel of the unit (in my life would not have guessed). Some advise at the time of calibration at all out of the room to ensure that the minimum measurement error. However, the audience in the movie sources absorb not only chips, but also the sound waves, therefore, would be more appropriate to be present in the room, but quiet. However, it is not particularly relevant, since the possibility of correction of room acoustic problems in AVR360 quite modest. And by the way, no different from the older "four hundred" model here, too, is not observed.
The remote control is standard, trained, quite functional and rich, despite the fact that in the actual operation of the receiver will be used almost a tenth of its potential. Auto-tuning a series of sliding tones takes no more than one and a half minutes, and the machine is good at setting the basic parameters even in the face of constrained the scope and application of different types of speakers. Stereo Direct mode component resembles Solid stereo. The latter circumstance may be associated with objectively high level of separation, although the parameter channel separation in the manufacturer's data is not standardized at all. As to the first two aspects, it is relatively modest in its status Arcam AVR360 looks definitely advantage when compared to some of the Japanese-Chinese receivers whose output power is often double the consumption in the passport. Even half of the available on board watts enough to rein in almost any acoustic. Of course, in the case of heavy load in the seven-channel version (4-ohm speakers) at a decent volume of the power supply may be slightly (and likely) to sit down, but for the typical space of small and medium area (10-25 m2) features the device is enough.