Denon 4310CI or Pioneer Elite SC-27

Discussion in 'AV Receivers' started by Gordon Wakim, Jul 31, 2009.

  1. Gordon Wakim

    Gordon Wakim Stunt Coordinator

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    I am in the market for a new AV Receiver. I currently own a Denon 3805. I have Klipsch KLF-20 Fronts, C7 Center KLF-10 Rear + Klipsch Side and Effect Speakers and a SVS PB-13 Ultra Sub. I am current looking at the Denon 4310CI & the Pioneer Elite SC-27. I have read all the specs and comparison lists for these two, and it would seem to be a difficult choice, both are great. I would appreciate any input or advice on making a choice. Does either unit have any real advantages over the other? How will the Pioneer sound with my Klipsch Speakers vs the Denon? The one thing I like about the Denon is the ability to have A & B Surrounds. Any info would be a help in making this decision. Thanks.
     
  2. David Willow

    David Willow Babbling Idiot
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    Hi Gordon,

    I like the Denon because I like Audyssey EQ much more than MACC. IMO, Audyssey in is a league by itself.
     
  3. Gordon Wakim

    Gordon Wakim Stunt Coordinator

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    Well, I brought home both a Denon 4310CI and a Pioneer Elite SC-27 this weekend. The Denon was nice, but many of the direct access features of my Denon 3805 were missing. I could no longer adjust speaker levels with the push of one button on the remote. The 4310 seems to require that you go the through the GUI to do this. By the way, the Denon has the nicest GUI I have seen and it can overlay over video for adjustments on the fly. I also could not figure how to cycle through various Surround modes as I could with my 3805 as in PLII Cinema & PLII Music. Once again it had to be done through the GUI. I did not much care for the remote that came with the 4310. Audessy set up was very nice and worked flawlessly. The big problem with the 4310 that I had was HDMI issues. When the GUI was on the HDMI connection would go out and would reacquire about every 15 to 30 seconds, and during a movie it would go out randomly. Due to this reason it had to go back to the store. I brought home a Pioneer SC-27 to try. This thing is a monster. Sound wise it was not that much different than the Denon. Both sound very nice. The good news is that there are no HDMI issues with this unit and many of the features that I liked such as direct access to surround modes, speaker level adjustments and such were available with the touch of a button on the remote. The remote is not the greatest, but serves its purpose, much better than the EL remote from Denon. The bad news, the GUI on the Pioneer is not nearly as refined as the Denon. Many features and adjustments are not available through the GUI. The GUI seems to be there for initial Setup and a few functions. It cannot overlay over video, so it cuts off a movie if you try to use it. Also many of the adjustments cannot be seen on the tv screen such as volume, speaker levels when adjusting from the remote or audio parameters, they only show up on the Receiver display. The MCACC setup works almost as well as Audessy. Another thing that I miss from the Denon is the ability to have A & B Surrounds, but because everything works, I will keep the SC-27 for now. I have 30 days.
     
  4. David Willow

    David Willow Babbling Idiot
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    Sounds like its time to invest in a universal remote
     
  5. Glenflame

    Glenflame Auditioning

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    I guess some people including me would believe that Denon is a little weak in strength in comparision with Pioneer Elite (for the same claimed xxx watt per channel).
     
  6. David Willow

    David Willow Babbling Idiot
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    Glen,

    Most manufactures inflate (or fluff) the numbers. Secondly, buyers put too much emphasis on watts. There's much more to it (a 20 or 30 watt difference is really trivial). Both Denon and Pioneer make terrific receivers.
     
  7. Glenflame

    Glenflame Auditioning

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    Personally, I dislike Denon's as I think in general Denon has a neat sound, but it is not as rich as some high end receivers.
     
  8. RANDY FISHER

    RANDY FISHER Second Unit

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    I love the sound of my Pioneer Elite. I find Denon over priced for what you get.
     
  9. Ed Moxley

    Ed Moxley Cinematographer

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    I'm not familiar with Pioneer receivers, but I do have a Pioneer dvd player that is very good. I know Denon makes some very good receivers. A little pricey, compared to some, but very good. The worst thing about a Denon is their remotes. I've read where a lot of people have said that Audyssey is better than MCACC, for setting up speakers. My Onkyo has Audyssey, and it did very good setting up my speakers. I didn't even have to use my SPL meter............
     
  10. Scott Merryfield

    Scott Merryfield Executive Producer
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    I have owned two Pioneer Elite receivers (my current 94TXH and previous 47TX). I was very happy with the 47TX, which is why I stayed with Pioneer when I upgraded to a model with HDMI and lossless audio codec support. While I am not familiar with Denon or the Audyssey auto-calibration system, I have found Pioneer's MCACC auto-calibration system to work very well. The only annoyance was that the program always seems to set my speakers all to "large" for bass management, and I then have to manually change them to "small". Otherwise, the speaker levels and room corrections work quite well -- speaker levels match when verified with a SPL meter, and I find I prefer the sound of the system with the room corrections applied.
     
  11. Gordon Wakim

    Gordon Wakim Stunt Coordinator

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    At this point, I have decided to keep the Pioneer Elite SC-27. It sounds as good as the Denon 4310 and sounds better than my Denon 3805 that it replaced. It does everything it is supposed to do. The menus are not as pretty as the Denon and I wish that more of the settings were on the OSD/GUI but these are not deal breakers. Many of the functions that I like to get to quickly are on the remote with touch of one button, no need to go into the GUI such as the Denon. As for MCACC vs Audessy, I used them both and both did a great job of setting the system up, no need for SPL Meter. Audessy may have had a slight edge, but not that much, plus I like the Pioneers ability to save different set up positions in memory for different seating positions. As said before, both Denon & Pioneer Elite Recievers are great, but this time the Pioneer suites my needs better, plus the Denon 4310 that I had kept loosing the HDMI connection.
     

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