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Rotel RAP-1580 Home Theater Surround Amplified Processor Preview



  • Product Name: RAP-1580 Home Theater Surround Amplified Processor
  • Manufacturer: Rotel
  • Review Date: April 09, 2017 18:00
  • MSRP: $3,800
  • First Impression: Pretty Cool

Input Sensitivity

  • Line Level Inputs (RCA): 300mV
  • Line Level Inputs (XLR): 600mV
  • Phono Input (MM): 3.85mV

Input Impedance

  • Line Level Inputs (RCA): 100kΩ
  • Line Level Inputs (XLR): 100kΩ
  • Phono Input (MM): 47kΩ

Digital Audio

  • LPCM (up to 192kHz, 24-bit)
  • Dolby Surround, Dolby TrueHD, Dolby Atmos, DTS-HD Master Audio, DTS:X

HDMI Inputs/Outputs

  • 8 inputs with 3 supporting HDCP 2.2 
  • 2 outputs supporting HDCP 2.2 
  • VIDEO INPUT RESOLUTIONS: 480i/576i, 480p/576p, 720p, 1080i, 1080p, 1080p 24Hz, 3D, 4K, UHD
  • VIDEO OUTPUT RESOLUTION 480i/576i, 480p/576p, 720p, 1080i, 1080p, 1080p 24Hz, 3D, 4K, UHD

General Specifications

  • DIMENSIONS (W × H × D) 17" × 7.55" × 18.5"
  • WEIGHT 50.27lbs.

Rotel electronics has been producing audiophile quality components for over 50 years. They recently released details of their newest product, the RAP-1580 Home Theater Surround Amplified Processor. Wait. What? Is it a preamp processor? Is it an amplifier? Is it a receiver? or did Rotel invent a new product category? If you’re not sure what the difference is yourself, read the following Audioholics article AV Receiver vs Separates.

The RAP-1580 is an ultra-high-performance multichannel, integrated amplifier with surround processing that brings music and movies to life in a startlingly vivid way. It is a state-of-the-art single chassis audio/video component that outperforms most separates. This is our finest home theater product yet—while it resembles a ‘receiver’, it really is in a class by itself.

Doug Henderson, U.S. President of The B&W group

O.K. problem solved, it’s a receiver, or more accurately categorized as an Integrated Amp/Processor since it lacks an AM/FM tuner.  Rotel is just staying away from the dirty “R” word that some audio aficionados abhor.  We don't blame them ever since the era of the super receiver ended nearly a decade ago because despite how good they were, some audiophiles just didn't like the stigma associated with an AV receiver.

Looking at the numbers, the RAP-1580 should be a great home theater solution for those who don’t have space for separate components but still want high quality performance.


    Top View of Rotel RAP-1580 Home Theater Surround Amplified Processor

Real Power

The RAP-1580 sports the latest HDMI 2.0a hardware and Dolby Atmos and DTS-X 7.1.4 processing, its amplifier section is built upon a powerful class A/B design with 7 x 100 watts per channel, all channels driven into 8 ohms or 150 watts per channel with 2CH driven.  To make this power, the RAP-1580 is anchored by a massive Rotel-made toroidal transformer and a generous power supply capacitor bank.  Please note these are conservatively rated watts, and NOT the nonsense we've seen recently on many Atmos/DTS:X AV receivers rated at 1kHz, 6 ohms, 10% distortion with only one channel driven.

The RAP-1580 utilizes high performance Wolfson 24bit/192kHz Digital-to-Analog Converters for all channels. These low noise, audiophile quality DACs are supported with premium-grade audio parts in circuits tuned by Rotel’s acoustic engineering team in the U.K.


Back View of Rotel RAP-1580 Home Theater Surround Amplified Processor

Connectivity & Features

Inputs include 8 x HDMI video inputs with 2 x HDMI video outputs all supporting 4K video with 3 of these inputs and both outputs enabled with HDCP 2.2.  The  seven-inch TFT display on the front panel should provide easy adjustments to all audio and video parameters without the need to turn on your television or video projection system. This feature is ideal for set-ups when the equipment rack is located separately from the video display.  A full suite or custom integration features is on-board.

Other features include a front panel HDMI input with 4K video pass-through, front panel iPod USB input with 2.1A charging and integrated APTX enabled Bluetooth technology for higher fidelity wireless streaming.

The RAP-1580 also includes a PC-USB input supporting 24 bit/192kHz audio, an MM phono stage input, CD input, XLR balanced input, Tuner input, 3 AUX analog inputs and multi-channel input.

The Rotel RAP-1580 comes in both silver and black finishes and will set you back $3,800. It will be available this April 2017. So, if you're in the market for a high end receiver...sorry, we mean Home Theater Surround Amplified Processor, then Rotel might have what you're looking for.

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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Tony is our resident expert for lifestyle and wireless products including soundbars. He does most of the reviews for wireless and streaming loudspeakers and often compares soundbars in round ups and helps us cover the trade shows.

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