Home Theater Review

 

ADA Cinema Rhapsody Mach II AV Preamp Reviewed

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HTR Product Rating

Performance
4 Stars
Value
4 Stars
Overall
4 Stars

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Audio Design Associates (ADA) is a different sort of company, and may not be one you have heard of before. If you have had a custom home theater built, the ADA name will be very familiar to you. ADA specializes in audio and control equipment for custom installed home theaters, and therefore markets itself to custom installers more than the consumer. Its products are designed to be rack mounted, and integrated into specialized control systems.

Additional Resources
• Read the Dr. Ken Taraszka review of the Krell Evolution 707 AV preamp
• Read the Home Theater Review coverage on the Krell 402e by Andrew Robinson
• Check out the Krell 403 three channel amp review here from Dr. Taraszka. 
• Learn more about the Krell Brand on their Krell Page.
• Read about Krell's latest "affordable" AV Preamp the Krell 1200 and Krell 1200U

Since I do not have a custom home theater, I really did not know what to expect when ADA sent the Cinema Rhapsody Mach II (hey guys, what's with the name?). This is ADA's new 7.1 surround processor, and is chock full of the latest technology and surround modes.

Unique Features - When I removed the Mach II from the box, I immediately noticed how long the unit is. It is low, long, and designed to take up as little front vertical rack space as possible, but uses the available length of a rack to hold all of its electronic innards.

The style of the Mach II is also different, having a centrally placed LED panel that gives you information concerning the input and the volume level, pictograph lights to the left of the LED panel, and dial controls to the right. The pictograph lights are very interesting, as one of them tells you how many channels are being input, and the other tells you how many channels are being output. For example, if you have a two-channel source, the L and R light up on the left pictograph, and if you are using Dolby Pro Logic II for this source, 5.1 channels light up on the right pictograph. In between the pictographs are the areas where the codes for THX, DTS, etc. light up. To the right of the LED panel are dials for mode, input, volume, channel and record. The input dial allows you to switch between different sources, and select which source you want on the bottom part of the LED screen, and then push to choose that source. This allows you to select the source without actually switching through all of them. The mode switch allows you to go through the different sound modes in the same way. Speaking of surround modes, the Mach II has lots of them. It is a THX Ultra 2 product, the highest and newest THX rating, and decodes Dolby Digital/DD EX, DTS/DTS-ES, Pro Logic, PUT, DTS Neo 6, and has various processing modes such as stadium, club, etc. This processor is proudly made in the USA, and states so right on the front panel.

Installation/Setup/Ease of Use
The back panel has 8 audio/video source inputs, three component inputs, one component output, four digital coax inputs, and four optical digital inputs. There are also 7.1 inputs for an external decoder, but it is in the form of a DB-25 connector.


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