ROTEL RSP 966 A/V Preamplifier

4.2/5 (5 Reviews)


Product Description

DD/DTS Surround Preamplifier


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Reviews 1 - 5 (5 Reviews Total)

User Reviews

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by DING SOLIS a Audio Enthusiast

Date Reviewed: November 22, 2000

Bottom Line:   
I WAS USING A PROLOGIC SET-UP CONSISTING OF NAD PREAMP/ HAFLER POWER AMP/ SSI SOUND PROCESSOR UNTIL I MOVED UP TO DOLBY DIGITAL/ DTS THIS YEAR. AT FIRST, I ACQUIRED A SONY DB930 AUDIO VIDEO RECEIVER WHICH OFFERED GOOD SOUND AND ADEQUATE FEATURES BUT I GUESS MY EARS WERE ATTUNED TO THE SOUND OF THE NAD/ HAFLER SEPARATES. I LET GO OF THE SONY IN FAVOR OF ONKYO DS 575 WHICH SOUNDED VERY GOOD BUT I FELT THAT SOMETHING WAS STILL MISSING. THEN, I CHANCED UPON A STORE WITH MATCH- UP OF ROTEL RSP 966 PREAMP & ROTEL RB 985 MARK II THX 5- CHANNEL AMPLIFIER & TRADED THE ONKYO IN FOR THE ROTELS, AT A FAIR DEAL. GETTING ACQUAINTED WITH THE FEATURES & CONTROLS OF THE PREAMP/ PROCESSOR TOOK A LITTLE TIME. ONCE HOOKED UP TO MY EXISTING SYSTEM, THE RSP 966/ 985 COMBINATION HAS SOUNDED GREAT FOR BOTH MOVIES & MUSIC - MORE DETAILED & BETTER IMAGING THAN MY OLD SEPARATES. WITH THE SUPERIOR SOUND MADE POSSIBLE BY THE ROTELS, I CAN NOW ENJOY WATCHING MOVIES THRU DD/DTS, LISTENING TO MUSIC THRU 5 - CHANNEL OR 2- CHANNEL STEREO & KARAOKE SINGING WITH FRIENDS AS WELL. I AM NOW CONSIDERING AN UPGRADE OF MY SPEAKER TO BRANDS LIKE B & W, MISSION, NHT, PARADIGM, DYNAUDIO OR PSB TO COMPLEMENT MY ROTELS.

MY SET UP ASIDE FROM THE ROTELS:

PHILIPS 860 DVP PLAYER
POLK AUDIO 10 B FRONT SPEAKERS
INFINITY CENTER SPEAKER
PSB ALPHA REAR SPEAKER
MIRAGE MS 12 SUB


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Used product for:   1 to 3 months

Duration Product Used:   Audio Enthusiast

Product model year:   2000



Overall Rating:4
Value Rating:4
Submitted by Matt Freeman a Audio Enthusiast

Date Reviewed: April 6, 2000

Bottom Line:   
I use this processor in conjunction with Rotel's RB985MKII 5 channel power amp and their RDV985 DVD player. Generally very pleased with the sound both for home cinema and straight hi-fi duties.

The sub output seems very weak when using it in pro-logic or stereo modes (it's fine in DD/DTS). I don't know if this is normal or not but the old Zeta 2 I had previously didn't seem to vary it's sub output at all.

Also, I got my first DTS DVD recently - Saving Private Ryan. Absolutely amazing sound but there seems to be some lip synch problems (most noticable when the soldier are about to enter a French villiage, about 45 mins into the film). Perhaps this is just a feature of the disc (I don't have another DTS disc to try at the moment) but then again could it be that the DTS processing isn't quite fast enough?

Does anyone out there own the DTS version of this DVD and, if so, have you noticed lip synch problems?

Apart from those couple of reservations I'm most happy with this processor.

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Used product for:   Less than 1 month

Duration Product Used:   Audio Enthusiast

Product model year:   2000



Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:3
Submitted by Dave a Audio Enthusiast

Date Reviewed: March 5, 2000

Bottom Line:   
Good grief, where to start, ( my unit, may have been just that, a UNIT ).
First impressions last, and when the -966, wouldn't fit into my standard width A/V unit, I was suprised, there were some weird little plastic things which had to be removed, then it fitted.
I had this teamed with the 985mkII 5x110 amp, and to its credit the it was OK.

When I first powered up the unit, it took a good 30 mins to get the remote to work correctly, it is really required to complete the setup.

The remote is in itself a excercise in how not to build a remote, large, poorly marked and poorly placed buttons and cluttered.

the front of the unit, is also haphazard ( being nice ) with no real placement scheme aside for hmmm lets put the button for this here, and lets put the other button for the next function over there. YUK!

another thing was the volume knob, had to turn the bloody thing about 6-8 FULL revs before I got any sound out of the and, there is NO WAY to tell how loud the unit is up when you turn it on ( just ask my neigbours ! )

the osd has some huge short comings, it would only work on the s-vhs output, not the composite, hmmm a fault there maybe??? There was no input gain AT ALL !, the dynamic range compression sucked, on MAX it was overbearing, with harsh and strident overtones, while when adjusted to any other setting, it would reduce the sound stage to that of a mono TV.

Overall I was not impressed with the unit, some complaints may be petty, but when you shell out over 1.2K then maybe you should be cut a little slack

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Used product for:   Less than 1 month

Duration Product Used:   Audio Enthusiast

Product model year:   2000



Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:4
Submitted by Martin Greyling a Audiophile

Date Reviewed: January 17, 2000

Bottom Line:   
Pop in a disk like The man in the iron mask and this is as good as it gets in pure sound quality terms. This processor sings. Use a disk like 5th Element and you are there, very believable. Sound effects truly 3D. Spend the time for correct level set-up and delay, its well worth the effort. Invest in a good quality speakers, if possible all floor standing with power to drive them like the Rotel 993 and 991 power amps. Mickey mouse set-up does not do justice to the processor.
A nicecity is individual volume and personal settings for different sources. The remote lay-out not logical with menu driven set-up and takes some getting use to. No back-light on remote.
No compromise audio quality in stereo with all you will need for AV. Best of both worlds.

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Used product for:   1 to 3 months

Duration Product Used:   Audiophile

Product model year:   1999



Overall Rating:2
Submitted by Daniel Lofgren a an Audio Enthusiast

Date Reviewed: August 19, 1999

Bottom Line:   
I bought this product one week ago, after some test listening.
I use the RSP 966 in combination with:

*Nad 916 6-channel power amplifier
*Sony DVP-S7700 DVD player
*Canton Plus X front/surround speakers
*Canton AV 700 center
*Home-built subwoofer with a Focal 12" driver and a 200W sub amplifier.
*Van den Hul Speaker cables and Monster Interconnects

My choice of the Rotel RSP 966 is both on sound and features. Features was the deciding factor, since there are alternatives on the market that has similar sound quality. And this machine HAS good features, at least on paper. What I find useful is:

*DD/DTS decoding.
*Excellent system remote. No backlighting, but that´s just saving batteries in the long term.
*Good quality feeling. Feels sturdy, all controls feels expensive.
*Excellent connections, all gold plated.

But...there are is a major problem with this unit. Mine has some sort of software problem, it gives no signal to the center speaker in DD mode. It doesn´t bother me too much, it´s the salesmans problem.

The REAL problem is:

One critical factor for me to buy this unit is the DTS decoding, but I can´t use that feature. My system has very small speakers that cannot produce any lower bass than about 80 Hz. The subwoofer is absolutely needed to obtain a fullrange sound. An absolute criteria for me is a small/large setting in the speaker setup. An it works fine too, in everything but DTS mode. When listening to DTS, it is not possible for me to get a fullrange sound, since speakers only can be set to "large" in that mode. Thus meaning that the sound recorded on the disk is EXACTLY what´s going to the speakers. Rotel themselves blaims this on DTS, but that is pure horseshit. If they were serious about the DTS function, they would seen to that there was a "small" function, where all low bass were taken away from the front/center/rear speakers and sent to the subwoofer, mixed with the sub info on the disk. A simple crossover/mixing function.

The potential and sound of DTS is too important just to throw away.
I´ll give this unit a five star rating for construction, features and sonund quality, but I´ll deduct three of those for the DTS feature.

Do NOT buy this unit if you intend to play any DTS material.
I´m fur sure are going to trade it in for something else.

*Daniel




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Duration Product Used:   an Audio Enthusiast




Reviews 1 - 5 (5 Reviews Total)

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