Audio video processor for the discerning phile 15/06/06
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Lexicon are more known for their industry standard effects processors and more recently audio interfaces, so this new MC-12 HD may come as something of a surprise.
Featuring 6 HDMI inputs and one output, it can handle video and audio processing and routing multi-room systems with three separate zones. Because each zone is independent, it is possible to watch a DVD in the home theater while listening to a CD in the kitchen and recording a program from a satellite receiver to a digital video recorder.
â€œThe culmination of years of research and design, it combines the best elements of performance, flexibility, and elegance. Sophisticated and powerful, it is exceptionally well equipped to control the most elaborate home theaters. Three zones, twelve configurable inputs, HDMI switching, and automatic room calibration enable the MC-12 HD to easily meet the demands of discerning audio and video enthusiasts.â€�
The MC-12 HD rear panel reveals an impressive array of inputs and outputs. There are multiple analog inputs, including a 5.1-channel connector for DVD-A or SACD sources such as the RT-20 Disc Player. High resolution 24-bit/96kHz analog-to-digital converters can be used to bring these signals into the digital domain for processing or, for audio purists, a true analog bypass can be engaged which keeps the signals in the analog domain from input to output.
Digital audio input is available on one AES/EBU, six S/PDIF coaxial, and six S/PDIF optical connectors. In addition, there are six HDMI input connectors, which are also capable of accepting 5.1-channel, 24-bit/96kHz signals on a single connection. These signals are processed at their native sampling rates through a two-stage phase lock loop, achieving remarkably low intrinsic jitter and high jitter rejection. Lexiconâ€™s proprietary Auto Azimuth processing corrects timing and level imbalances in stereo signals, resulting in exceptional channel separation in matrix-encoded sources.
The MC-12 HD also an array of audio outputs, including 7 main channels, stereo subwoofers, and a dedicated LFE channel. The MC-12 HD Balanced adds XLR connectors for the Main and Zone 2 audio outputs â€“ useful for installations where long cable runs are required or where there is a high risk of interference.
Each output uses two 24-bit/192kHz digital-to-analog converters operating in dual-mono mode. This design provides an improved signal-to-noise ratio and extended dynamic range, resulting in superior sound quality. High precision digital crossovers and tone controls avoid the signal distortion their analog counterparts often introduce.
For maximum flexibility, each of the main audio outputs has independent crossover, speaker distance, and output level controls. The crossovers can be adjusted in 10Hz increments from 30 to 120Hz. The MC-12 HD is also THX Ultra2-certified and integrates the processing and enhancements of the THX Ultra2 standard.
Automatic calibration of speaker distances and output levels is available using the rear panel microphone inputs and the optional Lexicon microphone kit. The accurate adjustment of these settings ensures that signal arrival times and levels are optimal at the listening position.
An optional automatic digital room EQ system provides the ability to smooth low-frequency response and remove acoustic resonances that interfere with not only bass information, but affect frequency response across the entire audible spectrum.
To handle the increasing number of video sources that output high-definition video using HDMI connectors, the MC-12 HD features six HDMI inputs and one output. Complementing its HDMI switcher, the MC-12 HD includes a broadcast-quality analog video switcher with up-conversion to component video. The ultra-wide bandwidth component video switcher accepts analog component video signals, including all HDTV signals, while a composite and S-video switcher accepts high-quality NTSC, PAL, and SECAM video signals. The MC-12 HD has two composite video inputs, three S-video inputs, and four component video inputs.
Enhanced versions of Lexiconâ€™s popular Nightclub, Concert Hall, Church, Cathedral, and Panorama listening modes are available, along with an impressive collection of advanced decoders, including Dolby Digital EX, Dolby Pro Logic IIx, DTS 96/24, DTS Neo:6, DTS-ES (discrete and matrix), THX Ultra2, THX Surround EX, and the latest version of Lexiconâ€™s own critically acclaimed Logic 7.