Anthem's Acoustical Magic Trick
Anthem's Acoustical Magic Trick
The audio corp's ARC room correction software has been given a substantial overhaul. Steve Withers breaks out his laptop
Steve Withers

THE BIGGEST DETRIMENT to the sound quality of an audio system is almost always the room itself. You can spend a fortune on kit, but it’ll still sound like a bag of sonic spanners if your room has major acoustical issues. This is especially true in the realm of bass, where dark forces are at work.

Those looking for solutions that don’t involve absorption panels, bass traps or inconvenient subwoofer locations will be pleased to learn that audio calibration systems are available designed to eliminate the more egregious aspects of your room through acoustic processing.

Anthem Room Correction (ARC) is one such platform and, as the name suggests, was developed by Anthem Electronics. Anthem employs ARC in its range of AV processors and receivers (including the MRX 1120 that forms the basis of this review), while sister company Paradigm offers ARC in its high-end active speakers and subwoofers, including the recently reviewed Persona SUB.

On its initial release – back in 2008 – ARC was a revelation, offering a sophisticated room correction system that combined state-of-the-art software with a high-quality calibrated microphone. Since then other systems have stolen some of the limelight, most notably Dirac Live, and as a result Anthem has given ARC a major upgrade.

The new version has been christened ARC Genesis, and it takes what was great about the original software and simply makes it better. For a start, ARC now supports Mac as well as Windows, which is great news if you’re an Apple fanboy like me.

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Xmas 2019