1 BOUGHT THIS "TOP END" PRODUCT 5 YEARS AGO AND APPARENTLY IT IS NOW IR-REPAIRABLE AND OBSOLETE. AS FAR AS JVC ARE CONCERNED THE PROBLEM IS NOW MINE AND ALTHOUGH I HAVE TAKEN IT TO BE REPAIRED AT A REGISTERED JVC DEALER, HE WON'T TOUCH IT BECAUSE THE R POWER AMP MODULE, PART NO LVA10423-01A1 IS NOW NO LONGER AVAILABLE. IF ANYONE OUT THERE HAS ANY SUGGESTIONS PLEASE RESPOND. Please do not tell me how good it is.
This is one of those purchases that you'll look back on and never regret. If you're just starting to set up a nice seperates-system home cinema, you can do a lot worse. This amplifier offers Dolby 5.1 Digital surround sound in both pro-logic II and DTS. Other features include an AM/FM tuner, 5 seperate inputs, plus 2 digital (optical and RCA), so you'll really have to try hard to fill up all those sockets.
You can use it as a scart switch too, so connect your VCR and DVD through scart, then the amp to the TV, and everything works flawlessly. There is also an option to press the TV direct button, which turns off the amp but still allows all the scart connections to work.
It has a pretty decent EQ, which is semi-parametric, meaning you can change frequencies as well as dB levels. It also has a midnight mode, which cunningly drops the really vibey bass frequencies so you can watch at night without waking people up, but still experience full surround sound. It's not perfect and it still would wake up someone in the next room, but it does help a bit.
You can select different surround modes, such as hall (reverb), pro-logic II, standard stereo, and surround off (mono). You can also select whether you're listening to music or watching a film. Chances are these are settings that you'd just fiddle with once and then leave it as it is, but it's nice to know you can fiddle!
One of my favorite features is the Smart Surround Setup, which appears to reverse your speakers, turning them into microphones, then you clap just above your head and it'll set up the levels just right, so even if you're not sitting central, you can still get perfect surround. Of course, you can still adjust the levels manually if you want to fine tune it a bit more.
You can also tune the remote to work for your TV, DVD player, VCR and set top box, though I've not tried this.
Along with all of this, it looks good too! Though there are a couple of annoying things about the asthetics: Firstly it looks like it should be a DVD player, and I can't count the amount of times that friends have been looking for the eject button until I point out the DVD is the other box! The other annoying thing is that the volume and source select knobs on the front are exactly the same, and not marked very clearly. I always go for source by mistake and end up selecting the tuner or something, when all I wanted to do was turn it up a bit!
I paid £150 for mine from Richer Sounds, and it's a few years old now but still going strong. I'm a bit of an audiophile and I've still not even considered changing it. It's a really great bit of kit.