It's more than a year late, but Classé is finally ready to release its SSP-800 AV pre/pro. Stunning aesthetics and build quality are here, but from the specs, it's hard for us to see what has taken the $8,000 beauty so long. The 64-bit TI DSP sure sounds impressive, but the absence of onboard video processing (no scaling or deinterlacing) makes us wonder what it's busy computing. Add in the fact that the DSP will need to be replaced when Dolby TrueHD and DTS-HD MA support arrives in a couple of months, and we wonder why the debut wasn't just delayed pending lossless support. We know there are some who will just have to have this piece of gear, but for others who just want to drop $8k on a pre/pro, might we recommend something along the lines of the Denon AVP-A1HDCI?
UPDATE: As several commenters have noted, the Classe SSP-800 did ship last year, albeit without Dolby TrueHD or DTS-HD MA decoding.