Marantz AV8003 Processor

I've just received my new processor for 4 days now. After reading previous reviews, the Michael Fremer one really scared me away from the processor because of the perceived difficulties in switching inputs and a difficult remote.
I can assure everyone that inputs are easy to switch. every input is linked directly to a number. The remote's backlight can be set up to a minute. Setting personal input names and links to hdmi, coax etc can b e a little confounding but I figured everything out under an hour and half. Sound quality is good but I have yet to set the EQ with the mic. Sound is not quite as transparent as my Simaudio Attraction 7.1 but blue ray playback with the new sound formats are fantastic. Hope this will help.
I also use the AV8003 and am generally very pleased. The one thing that I can't figure out is whether there is a direct remote control code to set the audio mode. Every time that I switch from one of my HDMI inputs to a composite video input, the audio remains in one of the Digital modes, and I have to hit the A/D button 3 times to cycle to the Analog setting. If you've got any idea where to find the direct code to set Analog mode, I would really appreciate it.
Anwill - What amp(s) are you using with it? I just got an AV8003 and (as best as I could figure out) played my CD player through the 'Pure Direct' mode (analog) and the Wadia iTransport through the digital input. I'm using a Carver A-500x with a Carver SD/A-450 CD player, and the sound was just plain bad. I was using my old Kenwood KR-V 7060 as a pre-amp before and the sound was detailed and open with a decent sound stage, but switching to the AV8003 just killed it all. I was just curious as it looks like a fantastic unit and perhaps I just need to adjust something.

I've had the 8003 for two years and it has worked flawlessly. Great sound and easy to use. You have to read the manual cover to cover a couple of times to really get familiar with it. I only use it for dvd's and television. I've never bothered to see what it could do on 2-channel.
Just picked one of these up new for 1500.00. Did I do good there?

This is a replacement for a much more expensive Theta Casablanca 3 that I unfortunately must part with due to the march of technology and Theta's utter lack of moving forward with the times and employing HDMI support. Yes, I know it's coming soon, but they want 5K for the upgrade!

At least I'll be running this receiver through Theta amps! I'm hoping I wont be noticing a huge drop in performance going this less expensive route.

Any thoughts or comments on this painful move?
You got an excellent bargain for a processor at that price. I cannot vouch for its two channel strengths, I've never taken the time to see. Be sure and read the manual....twice. You'll find that the unit is very flexible and has a ton of features.
I own the AV 8003 - It's a reasonable priced, terrific Processor - It sounds wonderful in theater applications, but like most processors, it dosen't make for the best 2 channel preamp.
I have heard from Marantz folks that the AV8003 works best with two channel if it is done analog seperate from the HDMI. I have the MM8003 and the UD8004 I have been pleased with the combo.
For Two channel Audio you should use

1/XLR Audio Inputs for CD/SA-CD (Stereo)

2nd choice The left and right of the 7.1 channel inputs.

You want to use analog connections for analog sound . HDMI is in the digital domain, and with only rare exceptions , will not produce the best 2 chanel audio.
I wouldn't be as prescriptive as Darryl. HDMI is the most practical way to enjoy DSD discs. My XA5400ES outputs both analog via XLR and digital via HDMI to my Cary Cinema 11a, so I can select either input. I prefer HDMI, especially when playing DSD discs. Multi-channel DSD can be glorious; try the Arts recording of Corelli violin sonatas.

The Cinema 11a is said to have excellent DACs, and my listening suggests that's true, so whether you should follow Darry's prescription depends on the relative merits of the DACs in your disc player and your processor. But I doubt DSD will be available via analog XLR.

My advice is for the many people that do not own an SACD player that out puts DSD over HDMI , and is specific to The Marantz AV8003 . The Cary Cinema 11a is a nice machine however this thread is a discussion of the Marantz AV8003 Processor.
Absent DSD or multi-channel considerations, my point remains that the decision whether to use analog or digital output depends on which is better, the DACs in the disc player or the DACs in the processor. I think the point is the same whether the processor is a Marantz AV8003 or a Cary Cinema 11a.

Sure you point is taken , however , you first want to hook it up , as per the manual . Experience the analaog domain . This way you have a point of reference. Ater than you can experiment as to how things sound via an optical , coax , or even an HDMI . If you like the souund of the DA conversion by your processor , you have that option. We basically agree , Im just posting this more for the individual who may just be getting into home theater , coming from say a 2 channel analog pre amp. Meaning start simple , then experiment , Thanks
I'd guess, but don't know, that it's possible to connect both the analog XLR and HDMI outputs of a disc player to the AV 8003, so one can compare the sounds just by selecting the input. I just leave both XLR and HDMI inputs in place.

It really depends on the particular player whether all the outputs are simultaneously active or not.

After writing the 1/3 post, I tried switching the input at the Cinema 11a from HDMI to XLR, but could not obtain a signal with XLR. IIRC, when I first set the 11a up, I was able to make such a switch. But I've made a lot of changes since then, so I may have set up the Cinema 11a in some way that doesn't permit analog from that input, although another input takes analog output from the phono stage without a problem. I'm going to be changing the racks around, so I'll check it out then -- I may have switched something on the Sony XA5400ES. I was too glib about my ease of switching between HDMI and XLR.

what was thread about again?
what was thread about again?

I think its about why its taking Andy Pettitte so long to decide if he is pitching or retired .
Hi, I have an issue with playing 5.1 content from an HDMI input when there is no HDMI output connected. My av8003 only plays left and right channels when no OUTPUT HDMI is connected to my tv, but when the TV is connected via the HDMI OUTPUT then it recognizes the 5.1 properly.

Is this the way it works or can it be changed??

Thank you,
I suspect that this has to do with HDMI hand-shaking and display determination.  Whenever the source (i.e. bluray / satellite) is connected, it sends a display question all the way through the HDMI cable chain.  The display/TV then reports back it's display type and the resolutions/rates it can display.  The source device then will send acceptable audio and video.  When your TV is off, there is no display device.  In this situation, the source may be defaulting to the lowest acceptable rate for audio, which is typically 2-channel PCM.
Perfect sense, thank you!!