Outlaw 990 vs Anthem Pre/Pro


Bronze Member
Username: Drj

Post Number: 17
Registered: Nov-06
Hello everyone.

I've been theoretically building an HT system for some time. I purchased a beauty, Anthem Statement A5 amplifier, a couple of years ago, used, but have been held back by the cost of the remainder of the system, especially the pre/pro. I had my heart set on the D1 and intended to buy a unit, used, but the fellow wanted too much money. Now the AVM50 and D2 both include a video section; meaning, they're even more money.

To my surprise and delight, the Outlaw 990 was brought to my attention on Saturday. As far as the five-year transferable warrantee and 30-day money back guarantee, they've certainly got the Anthem line beat.

More importantly, however, I'd like to know how they actually compare sonically, the Outlaw 990 with the Anthems. Are the Anthems really worth exponentially more money?

If anyone has had experience with both and/or has any idea about how these compare, I'd certainly appreciate the feedback.

Thanks in advance.


Bronze Member
Username: Nickelbut10


Post Number: 15
Registered: Jun-07
Only had experience with the Anthem. The 990 is a pretty good pre amp. BUT, the Anthem pre amps are a class ahead of the Outlaws.

Platinum Member
Username: Jan_b_vigne

Dallas, TX

Post Number: 10589
Registered: May-04

I'd have to disagree based on my limited experience with an Outlaw 970 pre/pro. The 990 is, from everything I've found printed about it, a shared product with Sherwood Newcastle (who produce a very good unit) minus the power amplifier section (and therefore the large package size that would normally accommodate a half dozen amplifiers). If you're after very good performance in the video/HT arena, the Outlaw 990 should provide a level of quality where you are being quite discriminating to judge one product superior to any other overall. In specific areas (none I can point to, read the literature and reviews to find which specifics matter to you), the Outlaw seems to be capable of hanging in with most anyone's processor and besting many. My opinion would be you can pick and choose features and operational controls and decide the Outlaw might not be what you want, but functionally, the Outlaw 990 should provide a level of satisfaction that would be, at the very least, hitting the point of diminishing returns. The Anthem certainly has the Outlaw beat in appearance, if that matters and the Outlaw remote is rather clunky. Overall I find many of the benefits and advantages of anyone's higher priced product to be offering feature sets that are going to be used once during set up and then never again. You can place a value on that according to your desires. The 970 fit my needs since I do not require balanced lines, "ultimate" HT is not that important to me and I'd rather spend the extra few dollars elsewhere. But I chose between the 970 and 900 by doing some research and the Outlaw 990 is a product I would say will easily satisfy you when the lights are out even if it doesn't physically impress you when the lights are up. Outlaw realibility seems to be top notch and service would seem to be as good as it gets. The reputation of Outlaw is what it is, and it is what the company seems to have aimed for and what they are satisfied to have. The Outlaw folks have hit their market and done quite well for themself. Finally, you can try the Outlaw 990 for a month and then decide what you think with nothing more to loose than return shipping.


New member
Username: Sunshine108j

Post Number: 9
Registered: Oct-07
I am also looking at the Anthem Amp/preamp the 50 model. What I like about this brand is can be upgraded as technology matures, all I have to is send it back and pay the difference, I really like the idea of having component, perhaps someone can share some of their knowledge with this type of systems or maybe recommendation one or two for us. I hate to do upgrade every time a new standard comes around or a new cool format (DVD blue laser, 1080p.....) and my system does not have the ability to conform with this new formats, in the long run I will to think it might save me any more money, but I got the quality system and I can just upgrade whenever I want and if I want I do not have to go out and purchase a new system. The only one I have looked is the Anthem 50 and all that I read looks good. Any advice will be helpful for us to help us make a decision.

Good luck I will keep my eye on your discussion and I get some info I will share it with you.


Bronze Member
Username: Drj

Post Number: 80
Registered: Nov-06

I did quite a bit of research before I purchased the Outlaw 990 and am very pleased with it. The 990 is now available for less than a $1,000 and, as far as I know, the upgrade from the D1 to the D2, is more money than what I paid for the 990.

I've never actually done an A/B test between the models and so I can't say. There's a fellow over at:


who has done such a comparison. He owns, I believe, the model you're looking at. However, from all those I consulted, most said the 990 was 80 to 90% as capable as the Anthem model. If you're willing to pay three times as much, for a 10 to 20% gain, that's a choice you're free to make.

If, however, your main reason for leaning towards the Anthem is the upgradability, then, you're deceiving yourself as you can buy a 990 for less than the cost of the upgrade. Not only is this the case, but the 990 has a transferable warrantee, where the Anthem does not (meaning, the 990 tends to keep its value).

Hope this was somewhat helpful.

If you have any more questions, feel free to contact me at jsjb@sympatico.ca .

Good luck with your choices!

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