You had Theta in the past, what did you move onto?

Just a question I’ve been thinking about. I once stumbled across a well equipped Theta Casanova and really loved the sound for 2 channel as well as HT use. Real shame that Theta never released a follow on processor, and the Casablanca units have always been too expensive for me, not to mention, really slow in coming out.

Eventually I’ve settled with Anthem for HT. I’ve certainly had a couple of brands which were a lot worse.

So for any of you who, like me, have beebig Theta Digital fans but have had to move on, what did you do?


Maybe I’m just a purist snob, but if 2-channel is very important to me I’m gonna use a stereo amp/pre or integrated and supplement with a good AVR to power the center and do the processing (I assume people here know how easily that’s doable).  Put the $$$ where it matters most and let the AVR handle the rest.  Unless your absolute priority is HT I don’t see spending huge $$$ on surround channels/processing as they’re just such a relatively small portion of the overall experience and decent AVRs can handle that pretty damn well.  I’m sure I’ll get flamed by the HT crowd, but I could live very happily with a separate stereo setup and seamlessly integrate an Anthem AVR handling my HT duties unless I’m HUGE into HT, at which point I’d go another route.  But that’s me. 

Your opinion is justified and I can appreciate your position. To me, purity is equally important for movies. Some of the best musical soundtracks are incorporated into movies that are experienced in a home theater. Personally, I appreciate the higher fidelity and resolution that my Trinnov provides, as compared to what I experienced when I owned a mid-fi marantz HT prepro. Also, I've come to appreciate multi-channel music. My former two channel purist mindset has been expanded to now prefer multichannel. Just my personal experience that I hope you can respect as we obviously differ in what we prefer.

Hey @soix  That actually is what I'm doing right now.  I use my system about 50/50, but that's really not the question I was asking.  I just have very fond memories of the Theta digital preamps/processors, which were just excellent for music and movies, and wondering what is out there that is comparable.

Even if I got a Trinnov today I'm very likely to simply substitute it for the Anthem and stick to my Luxman for 2 channel.

Trinnov is hugely expensive without the performance to show. With Theta, to say that someone switched and prefers the new processor is not as straight forward a statement as you might think. Many guys who owned the processors with the Premium dacs, felt Trinnov was an upgrade. Few, I only know of ONE, with the Xtreme D3 dacs that found Trinnov even the equal.

I could have gotten a Trinnov at a large discount if I were willing to say that it was the best sounding processor. Some did do exactly that and that was the ONE. Man, I was offered "at dealer cost" several time to say things. I just couldn’t do it. I love the hobby more than to stoop to that. It’s just too much fun to share and gain honest knowledge from others.

If Denon had digital outs, I would switch to that brand after hearing to separate rooms at a dealer in Houston, TX. The Denon room was considerably better than the room with Trinnov processor and amps. The one area where the Trinnov room was better was bass and that was only because it employed JL Audio subs and the Denon room had an inferior B&W sub.

I don’t use my Casablanca for music, or any prepro. I just think all prepros are mediocre for music. I have 4 Theta Gen 8s3 dacs that I use for music. I agree 100% with soix.

I used a B&K Ref 20 and Ref 5 channel amp for a while and the sound was very good for stereo and HT. I sold that and moved to audio only (SET amps), then got out of audio for about 10 years.

Came back via HT with a Onkyo mid range AVR and now with an Anthem AVR. Took a small step back as far options (no ATMOS, Bluetooth, etc.), but better build quality, simpler interface and love the room correction.

Compared Denon, Onkyo, Pioneer, Marantz AVRs and they all pretty much sounded the same. Which I guess is to be somewhat expected in the $800 - $1,000 range. None were as smooth or engaging as the B&K

Looked at older/better/used separates, but really like the HDMI interface and ability to leverage modern DTS/Dolby signals. The Anthem has pre-outs and that's prolly my next step is to power the fronts with a seperate amp.