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Integra DTR 10.5 Flagship 7.1 A/V Receiver

Part I

January, 2006

Piero Gabucci

 

Specifications:

 

● Codecs: DD, DD-EX, DPL-IIx, DTS, DTS-ES
     Discrete/Matrix, DTS Neo:6, DTS 96/24, THX Ultra2-
    Certified

● Power Output: 150 Watts x 7 into 8 Ohms, Rated
     into 4 Ohms

● DACs: 24/192 on All Channels

● THD: 0.05%

● Dimensions: 8.8" H x 17.1" W x 18.9" D

● Weight: 70.8 Pounds

● MSRP: $3,800 USA Base Price

● Modules: iLink-$200, Net-Tune-$200, HDMI-$500,
     Two Extra Multi-Channel Inputs-$200

Integra

www.integrahometheater.com

 

 

Introduction

OK, hereís the scenario. I get an e-mail asking me if I want to review the new Integra DTR 10.5 A/V receiver, and naturally my response was, of course. The next e-mail then tells me to sign on to their website and configure the review unit the way I want.

Immediately what comes to mind (other than, "Oh . . . Cool!") is that this is the future of purchasing mid to high-end receivers. And why not, computers are modular and parts can be added or removed from the chassis to accommodate upgrades and improvements, so why not order audio components the way you want them to begin with?

Well that is exactly what Integra has done. The "Built to Order" DTR 10.5 comes with a significant amount of standard features, but the lure here is customizing it before you buy it. Iíll discuss in detail some of the standard and optional modules later.

 You can try out the Build to Order feature, without actually buying one, at this URL: http://www.integrahometheater.com/buildtoorder.cfm.

Integra as you may know is a spin-off of parent company Onkyo, no slouch in the A/V world either. Considered the high-end series for Onkyo and meant for the custom installer, the Integra line furthers their reputation with the flagship DTR 10.5.

The Design

Touted as the first home theater receiver to be built around a modular-based architecture, the flagship Integra DTR 10.5 is a THX Ultra2-certified receiver capable of handling three independent zones. The 10.5 also boasts PC set-up applications via Ethernet and RS-232.

With a minimum of 150 WPC at 8 ohms with 0.05% THD, or 200 WPC at 6 ohms, the amplifier produces continuous power output for all channels. It is even rated into 3 ohms, at 340 watts of dynamic power. So, the days of receivers all not being able to handle low impedance speakers may be coming to a close (I suspect it will continue to be an issue with budget receivers though). As you might expect, this unit is heavy at more than 70 pounds, and almost 9 inches high.

The front of the unit is actually quite conservative, save a concave face and rather large flip down front panel, activated by a discrete button. Adorning the face is a small silver on/off standby mode button, a large display screen, and a strikingly large silver volume control which stands out dramatically from the black face. Below the display are a series of buttons that activate potentially fourteen input functions. Two tape, tuner, phono, CD, and DVD, join seven video sources and a new Net Audio for Internet Radio, more on that later. The video inputs are labeled 1 through 7 on the faceplate, yet can be renamed on the LED display.

Some information is displayed large and readable from a distance; other information is quite small, perhaps even a bit too small. What is obvious from a distance is the input source, such as DVD, and listening mode, such as THX or Direct modes. On the small side, for example, volume level is placed in the lower right hand corner. Even scrolling up and down it doesnít change size. A nice feature may have been when the volume is being altered, the unit might have enlarged the setting to be easily viewed, and return to the diminutive size once volume level is chosen.

By hitting the Display button, the large screen tells you which type of processing is occurring, for example Dolby Digital in 3/2.1, and then disappears.

The red-lit indicator for the active surround speakers is barely visible, likewise for speaker A or B selection. Above the on/off button is a nice feature: as you operate the remote, the receiver letís you know itís receiving the transmission through a blinking indicator. With the information on display so small, itís a consolation to know youíre doing something. Considering the battery life in the remote, this is also important to know your remote is communicating with the component.

Behind the flip-down door, youíll find the inputs for video source number 7 mentioned above. It gives you an optical, S-Video, as well as RCA video and audio left and right. This is for connecting something like a video camera to play back your vacation videos. A stereo headphone jack adorns the other side.

If youíre prone to making your input selections from the receiver rather than the remote, here is where you make your choices, such as setup, listening modes, tone control, zone selection, tuning, and so on.


Click Here to Go to Part II.

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