Anthem AVM 60
Anthem’s first 11.2 channel pre-pro is the AVM 60, and it’s a real gem. This audiophile Canadian manufacturer has stepped up the entire game, with a high-performance Pre-Processor at a price that is as well unexpectedly affordable in Canada at only $3,299.99. If you need to add a bunch of quality watts to go with your new AVM 60 Pre, Anthem has another great deal to complement your new processor acquisition too – a full 10% off of any amp (or set of amps) you decide on. Very nice.
Looking deeper, the multi award winning AVM 60 is packed with premium components aimed at the discerning person who really values faithful audio reproduction in their Home Theater system. The feature set is comparable to their top of the line MX 1120 AV receiver, albeit without the 11 channels of built in amplification. It supports up to 7 floor/ side level speakers, 4 subwoofers, and 4 (ceiling) height channels (7.4.4). As one would expect from a leading edge, high end surround Pre-Amp, you get a full suite of latest expected connections including the option of using balanced outputs (XLR) for all channels, to connect to your chosen power amp, and the expected reduction in ground floor noise that gives a separates combination it’s higher performance level. Of course, it also supports all the latest HDMI 2.0a standards as well as 4k/UHD, HDCP 2.2, and offers every one of the latest sound codecs including Dolby Atmos and DTS:X. She’s definitely all singing and all dancing.
But the very best feature of all may very well be Anthem’s Room Correction, known now as ARC-2. ARC-2 supports four speaker profiles (you could use these speaker set up presets in this way for example; Full ATMOS, 2 Channel Stereo, 2 Channel with the sub too and, good old 7.1), and you can even have them automatically selected for each input selection you make. Each AVM 60 comes with a calibrated microphone in the box, along with a surprisingly high-quality microphone stand. The mic has a unique calibration curve set up specifically for that single microphone alone, which compensates for any potential small manufacturing variances. No one else offers a literally bespoke mic for each pre-amp they produce, showing how important your sound is to these loony Canuk audiophiles. The new ARC-2 process allows you to print out a detailed report on your final configuration measurements, and you can even conduct ARC measurements from your iOS device. Cutting edge stuff from this moose loving, syrup sucking company… that we love!
Among the myriad of leading edge audiophile-friendly features on this puppy, we also find a honking toroidal power supply (getting harder to find these days), and premium differential-output D/A converters with 32-bit conversion and sampling rate optimized filters – for the very best hi-res sound. A whole suite of premium A/D converters with 106 dB signal to noise ratio for the outputs are also provided, ensuring the highest quality sound when using your analog sources. So they didn’t forget your old trusty turntable or cassette deck.
Features aside, the proof is truly always in the listening… or in this case the home theater “experiencing”. We’ve set this unit up in our best theater at the shop (in a Martin Logan Renaissance based 7.1.4 system) and everyone here listened to it and agrees, the “experience” offered in 4k Atmos in our Grand Theater demo room is nothing short of… well fantastic… no, stunning… What can we say? It offers a sense of space, air, depth, precision, accuracy and power not known before, all in great big unapologetic dripping gobs.
If you are a high-end Home Theater aficionado, you owe it to yourself to give it a try, and hear what this processor delivers!