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Crestron PSPHD "PROCISE" HD Surround Processor First Look

Crestron PSPHD "PROCISE" HD Surround Processor

Crestron PSPHD "PROCISE" HD Surround Processor


  • Product Name: PSPHD "PROCISE"
  • Manufacturer: Crestron
  • Review Date: March 18, 2011 01:30
  • MSRP: $11,000
  • First Impression: Mildly Interesting
  • 7.3 HD surround sound processing
  • Audyssey MultEQ XT
  • Three floating-point DSP
  • 24-bit 96kHz A-D/D-A
  • Ultra low noise down to 125 dB SNR.
  • Dolby TrueHD, Dolby Digital Plus, and DTS-HD Master Audio
  • Audyssey Dynamic EQ
  • Audyssey Dynamic Volume
  • Pure mode
  • QuickSwitch HD digital switching: fast switching of HDMI audio and video.
  • Smart HDCP Management
  • 30 inputs including HDMI, AES/EBU, S/PDIF optical and coaxial; plus mono, stereo, and multi-channel analog.
  • XLR Balanced Inputs/Outputs
  • PROAMP automatic amplifier pairing
  • Discrete output channel signal processing
  • 2-Channel Signal Steering
  • Downmix outputs
  • Integrated Line Mixer
  • Dedicated Speech Processing
  • Sophisticated Signal Routing
  • Native Crestron control
  • Crestron PROCISE Tools software - affords extensive configuration and fine adjustment via USB or Ethernet.
  • DigitalMedia system integration

We're going to apologize up front. Usually we try to list all the pertinent features under the specifications tab above but Crestron really beat us this time. Their specifications list reads like an owner's manual. When the first "Audio Decoding Mode" you list is "none," maybe you're being a bit too thorough. We've listed what they thought was important enough to warrant being on their description page above, but we'd be whittling down their spec sheet all week. So we'll cover what we think is important below.

First lets start with what the Crestron PSPHD is not - it is not the newest PSP from Sony (now in HD). It is also not a receiver. It is a processor which means no amps. With a custom installer name like Crestron behind it, you can bet it is also not going to be cheap. You'd be correct, but we'll leave that to the end. Hopefully you didn't see the price above and spoil the surprise. The last thing the Crestron PSPHD is not, is 3D capable. What this means is that you'll have to find a way to get the 3D picture to your screen but not through the Crestron. You'll also need to get the HD audio to the Crestron. Normally, we'd say you'd need a player that has analogue outputs to send the audio to the Crestron and use the HDMI to send the video to the display. In this case, you can skip that if you've invested in one of Oppo's new Universal Blu players with dual HDMI outputs. Plus, when you've plopped down the ginormous bag of money for this processor, what's another $500-$900?

But we digress.

Crestron is a custom installation control company that has a following within the CI industry as rabid as any other you can imagine. They Crestron guys that love Crestron won't use anything else (generally, though Control4 is sifting them away slowly). Branching out to a processor (and amp to be covered in a separate first look) is really a no brainer. But in today's competitive market, you'd better bring something other than a name to the table. And Crestron has.


Now some of the stuff on the back of the PSPHD Procise processor are going to look a little unfamiliar to consumers. Specifically the little green inputs on the top right corner. Don't be afraid, those are for the installers and we're not going to worry about them. You also don't find a bunch of colors clearly delineating inputs and outputs and the whole thing looks a little industrial. That's also by design. Installers don't need guides. They don't need labels for inputs like DVD or CD. They'll assign them all by number. Frankly, we like that as well.

There are six HDMI 1.3a inputs and a single output on the back of the Crestron PSPHD Procise processor. You've got digital inputs for audio including six coaxial and four optical. There are eight pairs of RCA stereo analogue audio inputs, a single pair of balanced stereo inputs, an AES/EBU input, and a set of RCA 7.1 analogue inputs. For outputs you have both balanced and RCA for each channel including three independent subwoofer channels. Lastly there is an RCA/balance stereo downmix output plus a mono output. While most consumers wouldn't use something like this, it is absolutely necessary for making distributed audio a snap. 

There is a lot of technology under the hood as well. Audyssey MultEQ XT is on board with Dynamic EQ and Dynamic Volume. There are three floating-point DSPs and 24-bit 96kHz A-D/D-As converters that achieve an ultra low signal to noise down ratio to 125 dB. There are independent crossovers for every channel (adjustable from 40Hz to 200Hz in 10Hz increments) and the front sports a very unique display. The left display shows source, decoding mode, setup, info, and installer menus while the right display shows volume levels. Both displays can show real-time VU meters or spectrum analyzers if you prefer (and we probably would).

But there are some things missing here. There is no multizone support, none of the newer DSPs with the width and heights channels, and no networking or streaming of any kind. While the last of those you can reason that a custom installer would use a dedicated device, for the first two, it seems a waste not to have them included in the box. You can, with the Crestron PSPHD Procise, use a feature called 2-channel signal steering which lets you alternately route stereo audio to the surround, rear, or all speakers for better background or party music.


For $11,000 (no, not a typo) Crestron has a lot for custom installers to like (including a hefty profit we're guessing). The Crestron PSPHD PROCISE Surround Processor is just what it says it is - a surround processor. It is really more about giving custom installers a very easy way to create a high end sound in a home theater with all the little things that discerning audiophiles want paired with features that will make installations easier. While it has a lot of recent features, some of the most cutting edge ones like 3D support, networking and streaming, and height and width channels are all missing. The price tag is definitely high but that is to be expected with this sort of product. We're sure that installers are drooling as they wait to get their hands on one.

For more information, please visit www.crestron.com.

Unless otherwise indicated, this is a preview article for the featured product. A formal review may or may not follow in the future.

About the author:
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As Associate Editor at Audioholics, Tom promises to the best of his ability to give each review the same amount of attention, consideration, and thoughtfulness as possible and keep his writings free from undue bias and preconceptions. Any indication, either internally or from another, that bias has entered into his review will be immediately investigated. Substantiation of mistakes or bias will be immediately corrected regardless of personal stake, feelings, or ego.

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