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N. Abstentia
12-28-2005, 08:39 PM
Jim- Did you ever go check out that Outlaw 990 pre/pro you were going to audition?

N. Abstentia
01-02-2006, 10:14 PM

Jim Clark
01-03-2006, 05:46 AM
Sorry, been out of town visiting my wife's family and just got back. Yes I did get invited over to a member of the AVS forums who just so happens to live a couple of miles away to check out his Outlaw 990. He had just returned the 970 so I didn't get a chance to see that.

The 990 is a beautiful piece of gear. It was an incredible performer on movies near as I can tell. It's really difficult to say too much more. Can you actually hear a prepro in a foreign room, with speakers you have no experience with? The guy knows his stuff but he had just put in some Klipsch Ref 25's up front and either those speakers have zero bass or the 990 didn't sound very good in direct mode with 2 channel music. Now, once he switched to the upconverting 24/192 mode (where his twin SVS subs kicked in) we had bass out the wazoo. He had done some a/b's with his own Yamaha 2500 and felt there wasn't much comparison between the two units. I didn't feel comfortable asking him to run the comparisions for me. The guy has built himself a nice little HT room (no HD, it's a theater only) and it was great to be able to look at the gear but I don't know how much of that would translate into my room.

It's a big ass prepro and for the price, I think it would be an incredible value. I'm still at least thinking about trying one out in my home. See, I just grabbed an Arcam AVP 700 prepro and the thing has some issues. Since I've spent very little time with it, I'm hoping some of those issues are due to a hasty setup on my part. One thing, it's the best sounding HT based two channel music solution I've ever heard. Since that's my main concern I think I can be happy with it. Still it has some short comings.

Arcam AVP 700

Pros (so far)- incredible 2 channel music in direct mode. Haven't played around with the Arcam's DACs at all yet. I'm sure that there's some more good stuff, but I haven't had time to find it yet. This unit is still very, very new.

Remote has buttons labled for functions that the Arcam doesn't possess. Like THX and cable input selection. The Arcam has inputs for Sat. but not cable and yet there are cable buttons on the input selection of the remote. Kind of silly and a little distracting since I have cable tv. Just makes it unnecessarily confusing for other trying to watch tv in my house.

The buttons are labeled with very small print and it's impossible to read.

Noise when changing channels on tv. I get a static "pop" when I change channels on the cable box. Only seems to effect the analog side but whenever the analog channels are involved (going from digital to analog/ analog to digital/ analog to analog) I get that annoying and occasionally loud popping sound. It really sucks and an issue I've never had prior to this unit.

Calibrating speakers was a B-itch. Please note the capital B. The pink noise generator never did get loud enough to calibrate my speakers to 75 Db's and I tried everything. I could get the fronts, but not the center channel. Finally I just used the pink noise to set to 65 realizing that it's all relative and I'd be OK. Also, when time permits I'll use the AVIA disc anyway. I've never had this problem before. Very weird.

Really hate the green display.

But, like I said, it's very good with 2 channel music. Maybe good enough to live with it despite my intitial grumblings. After I get some different interconnects and play around with it some more I'll post an official review.


N. Abstentia
01-03-2006, 09:29 PM
Thanks Jim! I think I'm also gonna try the 990 as soon as things settle down a little bit.