With a multitude of virtues and essentially no vices, the Statement D2v and P5 deliver the goods where it matters most--in your living room.
This is Part 2 of a two-part review. To read Part 1, click here.
Part 1 covers the following topics:
o Consider this controller/amp combo if…
o Look further if…
o Statement D2v Audio
o Statement D2v Room Correction
o Statement D2v Video
o Statement D2v Convenience
o Statement p5 Audio
• USER INTERFACE
• REMOTE CONTROL
In truth, the ARC Room Correction system probably deserves a separate review of its own, so that I will have to stick to highlight here. Unlike the widely used Audyssey systems found in many AVRs and A/V controllers, the ARC system requires a separate PC (or Mac) for setup and installation. You load ARC software to the PC (which must run Windows XP or higher) and then connect a calibrated USB Mic (which is included with the D2v along with a professional-type mic stand) and a roughly 14-15 foot-long “umbilical cord” that runs from a serial port on the PC to the D2v’s RS-232 port. Interestingly, the ARC software ROM contains calibration data specific to your test mic, so that the ROM and Mic must be used as a matched set.
Once you are ready to begin, the ARC software will prompt you to describe your speaker configuration (5.1-channel, 7.1-channel, etc.) and to indicate whether you wish to have separate “Movie” and “Music” speaker system configurations. Then, you place the test mic on its stand at the central listening position at ear height, and begin taking room measurements. During the measurement process, the PC issues commands to the D2v causing a series of sweep tones to be played through each speaker in the system and through the sub, while the mic captures response data. Once the first set of measurements is complete, the PC will prompt you to reposition the mic in four more listening locations, which should be located symmetrically to the left and right of the central position, where additional measurements are taken.
When measurements are complete, ARC software calculates correction settings for each channel and the sub, and then asks if you want to save the calculated settings and to upload them to the D2v—a process that takes several minutes. One slightly unnerving aspect of the upload process is that the PC will, at various stages along the way, turn the D2v off and then back on again as it uploads and confirms various settings. Once correction settings are installed, they can be applied any or all the D2v’s inputs. The ARC system offers a detailed graphical interface that shows you (on the PC screen, not your home theater screen) “before” and “after” response graphs for each channel and for the sub.
ARC offers two basic room correction options: “Standard” and “Advanced”. With the “Standard” option, the system applies a well-defined “target curve” that offers flat response at mid and high frequencies, but that allows a gentle, natural-sound amount of room gain at lower frequencies. While this means the target curve is not, in a textbook sense, perfectly flat, Anthem argues that it is important to allow for room gain, since dialing in perfectly flat low-frequency curves yields bass response that sound overly “thin” or reticent. With the “Advanced” setting option, users can modify standard EQ curves by manually setting subwoofer crossover frequencies, adjusting the amount of room gain the system allows, and choosing the maximum frequency at which room EQ will be applied. ARC’s “Advanced” setting give user options and a level of control that few other room EQ systems can match.