(March 14, 2023) The all-new VSX-LX805 is a different animal from Elite products that hit the market in 2021, largely because it’s the first to have Premium Audio Co.’s influence and input throughout the development process. Standing as Elite's new flagship model, the VSX-LX805 is a dream machine that satisfies a lengthy wishlist of must-have items, at least from the perspective of the North American enthusiast crowd.
Need proof? Here are a few highlights:
- Compatibility with Dolby Atmos, DTS:X, Auro-3D, and IMAX Enhanced? Check
- Ability to run a 7.1.4 immersive array without the need for an external amp? Check
- Dirac Live Full calibration suite without the need to upgrade? Check
- Dual independent subwoofer outputs? Check
- Access to Dirac Bass Management? Check
- High-powered amp output? Check
- Compatibility with Dolby Atmos Music? Check
- Multiple HDMI 2.1 inputs with 40Gbps? Check
- Multi-channel Pre-Outs? Check
- Phono input? Yup... Check
The LX805 is locked and loaded with nearly every feature one could want, and the price ($2,999 US MAP) is right on target. Those two facts reaffirm what Integra’s late February reveal established: the development and marketing teams at Premium Audio Co. are listening to its buying base and taking action.
This latest flagship isn’t a retread, it’s a complete rebuild both inside and out. Look closely and you’ll find a new chassis better designed to suppress noise, fine-tuned circuit paths, a newly designed symmetrical amplifier with custom capacitors rated at 18,000uF, and custom fan-shaped heatsinks. You’ll also find the latest generation of ESS ES9026 384kHz / 32-bit DACs, stereo XLR outputs for use with an external amp, matching XLR inputs for high-quality stereo sources, and enough power (150W FTC) generated by a new AB amp to drive reasonably thirsty speakers.
Beyond giving owners access to the market's most content-prevalent immersive technologies, Auro-3D and its upmixing capabilities, along with Dolby Atmos Height Virtualization and other common upmixers, are included. It also ships with Roon Ready onboard (set to be activated with a firmware update on 9/23) for the highest possible resolution of playback while using Roon.
With Dirac Live Full shipping loaded and engaged, owners have access to high-level room correction capabilities out of the box. For those looking for a streamlined experience, Dirac calibration can be performed using the included microphone and the Dirac app. And for those buyers that want to take tuning a step further, a USB microphone and PC/Mac processing can be brought into the fold. Of course, let's not forget about Dirac's highly desirable Bass Control module, which can be purchased for a fee ($349, single sub; $499 multi-sub).
For those buyers less concerned about Dirac, MCACC is still included to make set-up as simple as possible.
On the HDMI front, the receiver carries six HDMI 2.1 inputs with full 8K 40Gbps performance. That means access to Auto Low Latency Mode, Variable Refresh Rate, eARC, passthrough of Dolby Vision, HDR 10+, BT. 2020, compatibility with HDCP 2.3, and more.
As far as we can tell, the only wishlist item not satisfied is the use of Class D amplifier technology. And while there’s a solid argument to be made for sticking with an AB topology going forward, Premium Audio Co. hasn’t completely shut the door on a return of a Class D AVR in the future. In fact, I'm feeling more confident than ever that we might see its return sooner than we think.
The VSX-LX805 is currently scheduled to hit the market in the next 4-6 weeks. We’ll update this article as more information becomes available.