Panasonic SA-XR45 & Digital Amps?

I bought one of these units over a week ago and am impressed with it thus far.

What do people think about the chip sets used in these things? That is my main question and why I am writing this thread.

I do not know much about the Tripath and TI chips,but it looks like these will be flooding the market with the passing of time. Are we seeing a receiver package that can be competitive with ultra expensive stuff or is it just the same old song and dance which has gone on for decades, which is receivers from the fareast being no match for SOTA Amps made in other places like the US etc..

I always considerd SOTA amps to be capable or have the capability to drive difficult loads and I do not know about this amps capability to do so. I would not warrant it as being SOTA based on that,but the sound given off using speakers that are not difficult to drive you can get exceptional results I feel.

Other things that might pose difficulties for those that expect alot from the unit is the Analog Playback and the binding post. I use a Solid Core cable which makes hookup fairly easy and Wayne of Boulder as mentioned below is doing things to improve the analog playback. For $300 you get alot for the $$ which has always amazed me at just how much can be put in a small squared piece of sheet metal. All that is left to question is the quality of what they do use in that small square box for parts and playback.

Other units made by Sony,Denon,Pioneer and Carver I would like to see eval'd with a side-by-side list of features and what sound quality each can attain. For price I think this unit has them beat with the exception of Sharp ,but that is a 1-bit unit going for $130 which I have not heard. 1-bit units I really have only read negatives about till I read up on the Sharp. HK has always been so-so to me with a darkend quality playback. Rotel has great sounding stuff,but at a price.

The combo's and choices are mind boggling and it is great to see that so much good is coming to the market now for such affordable prices!
Review post at AR!

I have had this unit inserted in my system for over a week now and I think I can now rate it even though the break-in period is not fully over with.

First off I was more than disappointed in the performance when first trying it out. I did not know what was wrong the first 4days ,but I knew that if this was what to expect I was not going to be giving it more than a rating of 1.The sound was sterile lacked weight and was just bland! After reading the high regard others had using it I knew I was missing something.

NOTE:”GET RID OF THE STOCK POWER CORD!” That cannot be stressed enough IMO!

Wayne of “The Boulder Cable Co.” has the best solution which is to install the IEC Receptacle in the back so you can by-pass using an Adaptor all together. He is also working on improving the Analog Input Section. Look ½ way down pg. Here:

I knew others had touted it as being close to Krell in performance and I will not go that far. After receiving a Power Cord Adaptor and using my trusted DIY PC from my reference B&K Power Amp everything came in. I also used the Bass\Treble controls to adjust the sound to my liking. I'd advise others experiment with them also .Many people overlook such features.

Being 43 my hearing might not be what it use to be. Dialog and vocals are important aspects which I needed to be clear and focused without the glazed or glaring which I hear in alot of mid-fi stuff\junk. Soundstaging and Bass were good. Not as liquid as my reference Passive setup, but I did not think I'd want to send the unit back in any way. It did have a more forward sound which does help my speaker presentation I feel. I am not an HT enthusiast and used 2ch. Playback to test. If it did not hold up there it was not worth testing for HT. The 2ch. Playback is well beyond acceptable IMO for a $300 unit. People say that the Digital Chip or switching Amps are not worthy yet, but it seems they have closed the gap.

Very highly recommended at a selling price of $300 through J&R's Music World. I shall do a follow-up for HT after getting the rest of my speakers in place.

Only reason I gave it a rating of 4 as a very good product is the fact I do not listen to receivers and bought the piece after reading that it was highly regarded.

There are plenty of reviews from pros and audioheads all of which are informative. AVS has 20+ pages dedicated to the receiver.What Video has a more detailed review than any I have seen thus far.

What Video Review

Thanks for reading!

Speakers: Modified NEAR M50’s
CDP Phillip’s CD-80
DVD Generic Mitek model
Power Cord Adaptor & Bob Crump DIY PC—( Jason)Review Forthcoming
Speaker Cable and IC's--My OTA Cable(
I've had an XR45 for nearly a month and think it's a nice product, but it's not very audiophile oriented. It's a low priced home theater receiver. Despite this it actually sounds quite good as a stereo receiver. I prefer it to the Rotel 1050 (more than 2x the price of the XR45) it replaced in my bedroom system. To date I've only used it with analog sources (iPod & Sony 333ES) and I haven't replaced the stock power cord. I'm impressed, but I don't think it's a world beater. It seems to be well built and at a street price of $330 it's a great bargain.
Replace the PC and see if the sound improves. I tought I'd throw the thing out the window before I did that .Nade a world of difference.

Try that and see what happens then post back. Unless you have a difficult load it should easily compete with anything in it's class easily.
Abex, What power cord would you recommend?
Anything is better than the Stock PC. That thing sucks!

Wayne of Bolder Cable uses a NITRO which goes for around $100. Then there is the DIY Bob Crump design which goes for what Jason sells it for at .I am trying one now and will do A/B testing in the future. Might get the NITRO also to try.

Would like to try an Optical Cable and maybe 3 different Digital Cables to see what I find for results.

My Hook-Up wire works great for speaker cables with this unit. IC's I have not checked out yet,but I will be getting the units Analog Stage Modified at some point ,that is certain.

Hope that helps.

Abex, thanks for the info. It's much appreciated.
"To date I've only used it with analog sources"

Remeber that the analog section is not to good. Use a good CD Transport and digital sources to hear the benefit.

Wayne described some of the stuff he did to the unit over at AudioCircle "Bolder Cable BB".

Another thing is make sure all parameters are corrsect in the OSD.

Lastly,this is a $300 reciever ,but it blows the doors off regular A\AB Reciever amps.The only thing I think I miss from my Passive setup is alittle of the inner detail. Besides that I could happily and will live with this amp for about a year atleast. I will wait for a model that has all the features I am looking for.

Not much to complain about with a $300 unit that even comes close to my old setup. If you are looking for great analog ,a great tuner section or are trying to use it with really hard speakers then you shall be disappointed.But if you are looking for great output through digital sources with speakers that are not weird loads I bet this unit will save you a atleast $1000 because the only other notable I would go to next is either the Carvr or the PS Audio unit. It would be the PS Audio Amp. Then I would have to get a Pre-amp also.

Tell me what you find.