Is Marantz SR6005 or Denon AVR991 a better replacement for my old Marantz SR5200 (I have Paradigm sp

Discussion in 'AV Receivers' started by vpantvaidya, Mar 13, 2011.

  1. vpantvaidya

    vpantvaidya Auditioning

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    I have an old Marantz SR5200 (no HDMI) and Paradigm (8 ohm) speakers and I use them to mostly watch blu-ray movies. I was looking to upgrade to either Marantz SR6005 / Denon AVR991 and have the following doubts:

    - I hear that Marantzes are better built, but what does that mean? That they last longer? If I am paying 1000 bucks for a Marantz that will last 10 years, I may be okay paying 600 bucks for a Denon if it will last 5-6 years.
    - Would there be perceptible sound quality difference between these 2 receivers
    - I am looking for decent quality receivers at an affordable price tag - Denons seem to fit the bill. The Marantz model seems to be the cheapest of the high end receivers while still being pricier than Denon. I understand Onkyos and Yamahas are not comparable to these models. Any other receiver brands that I should look at?
    - Is it okay to use a receiver with higher output (AVR991 has 125W X 7) than my speakers (100W) as long as I dont turn the receivers to full power. My old Marantz is rated for 90W and I always felt like the sound I was getting from the speakers was not enough.
    - Typically does the volume control know of a receiver have a linear response. Assuming that, for a 125W receiver, the volume control when turned 4/5ths of full capacity will give approx 100W output.
     
  2. vpantvaidya

    vpantvaidya Auditioning

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    Seems like Pioneer Elite VSX 33 offers THX certification at about same pricepoint besides everything that AVR991 / SR6005 have.
     
  3. winniw

    winniw Second Unit

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    I think that you are in the sweet-spot with Marantz or Denon... there is not really anything else to consider. NAD doesn't have the features, e.g. HDMI 1.4 and Anthem is not really a sonic upgrade, from what I have read, and their room correction requires pro setup.


    I cannot say if Marantz sounds better than Denon but I do think Marantz is better looking and it has a back-lit remote (maybe Denon does too, I don't know).


    I'm not certain and I am too lazy to look it up, but I think that the Marantz 5005 is a more direct comparison, feature wise, to a Denon 911 and the Marantz 6005 is more comparable to the Denon 1911.


    Don't drive your speakers into distortion and you should be fine.


    Nick
     
  4. gene c

    gene c Producer

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    I recently added a Marantz 7002 to my "what am I going to do with all these receivers?" list and as soon as I turned it on I was very impressed with it's sound quality, even before doing any setup/calibration. But so far the usability has left me a bit frustrated. But since you have a Marantz that shouldn't be a problem. But they are a bit more expensive, and with a few fewer features, so that bodes well for Denon.


    I also think Denon is in the sweet spot between performance, price and durability. Onkyo's and Yamaha's in that price range are also very good. As for Pioneer Elite, I would really only get the SC series. The lower model Elites are nearly identicle to the regular Pioneer line which is quite a bit cheaper.


    I'm not sure I'd call a receivers volume control linear. It's more like an earthquake scale.
     
  5. vpantvaidya

    vpantvaidya Auditioning

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    Thanks folks for the help.

    I also believe that Denon is the sweet spot - but just like the Pioneer Elite SC series, I have been told that only Denon's CI (custom integration) line (not the AVR line) can even be compared (if at all) with the Marantzes, Pioneer Elites etc.

    And some people wont even hear anything about Onkyo. As you can imagine that leaves a moderately knowledgeable audiophile like me a bit confused.

    Right now my receivers list reads:

    Marantz 5005/6005

    Denon AVR 991/3311CI

    Pio Elite VSX32/33

    Onkyo TX-NR708
     
  6. winniw

    winniw Second Unit

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    When I chose my receiver, I wanted HD radio and that narrowed it down a lot. I'm glad that I got it. It sounds good.


    Then I started thinking about networking. I didn't have any immediate plans for networking but I figured that if I bought a receiver without it, that I may regret that down the road.

    Then, thinking about the future a little more, I realized that it would be real nice to have something that was firmware upgradable via the Internet. Whoa! I guess that networking really will come in handy.


    That's how I came to the Marantz SR7005. It has a fantastic feature set and I know that it has the best sound that I can get in my price range, after all, Mark Levinson and Krell were not even on my short list!


    I got lucky and found a factory refurbished unit at Accessories4less (a Marantz authorized dealer) for $1100. I'm sorry to say that they don't have any more available right now but they do have some great deals on 5005's and 6005's that you may want to check out.


    Nick
     
  7. vpantvaidya

    vpantvaidya Auditioning

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    Thanks Nick.


    Many folks suggest using the weight of a receiver as a indication of its power delivering capability. If I do that with my shortlist, the results come out to be very unexpected with the Onkyo as the heaviest and Marantz lightest. Can I take this really to imply that the Onkyo model can deliver the power it claims?

    Marantz 5005/6005 - 25 lbs
    Denon AVR 991/3311CI - 26 lbs
    Pioneer Elite VSX32/33 - 29 lbs
    Onkyo TX-NR708 - 27 lbs
     
  8. gene c

    gene c Producer

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    Weight is on thing I like to at least look at but that's all it is, weight (the heaviest receiver I've owned so far was a Pioneer Elite 59txi. 68lbs!). There's also the power draw from the wall (how many watts/amps does it consume) and the type of amplifier it has. Toroidal, direct current, Pioneer Elites ICE and other digital amps. The most accurate power related information can be found in the back of the manual, not the sales literature. Read the numbers carefully.


    There's also the bench tests from magazines like Sound And Vision, Home Theater Magazine and websites like Hometheaterhifi (Aka Secrets of hifi). In general (and I mean general)from what I've read and experienced over the years Onkyo, Denon, Marantz, upper-tier Pioneer Elites and Yamaha's and especially Harman Kardon seem to be the more powerfull receivers. Sony, entry level Pioneers/Elites and lower priced Yamaha's seem to fall a bit short. But for 90% of us any of these receivers will be more than adequate. If power is what you're really after then get a receiver with pre-outs and pick up a good multi-channel amp or just a two channel amp for the fronts and power the rest with the receiver.
     
  9. winniw

    winniw Second Unit

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    Whew! I was a little scared there for a minute. Turns out, my 7005 weighs in at 28.6 lbs. I would feel better if it was over 30 though.
     
  10. gene c

    gene c Producer

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    The 7002 I currently have weights 33 lbs and it semms more than strong enough. And it's much easier to put in and out of the rack then the 49 lb H/K 7200.
     
  11. Al.Anderson

    Al.Anderson Cinematographer

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    I don't think the weight differences of a few pounds should be used to differentiate those models; it's not that fine of a parameter.


    Just for added clarity, here's something from Axiom's site discussing amp weight:


    http://www.axiomaudio.com/aboutamplifiers.html



    1. Is Amplifier Weight an Indicator of Robust Amplifier Design?

    You have to find out if the amplifier is a Class A/B analog amp or a Class D digital amplifier before you can generalize about weight and amplifier quality. The appearance of high-quality digital amplifiers such as theAxiom A1400-8 has changed the equation. Digital Class D amplifiers are much more efficient (90% or more) than analog Class A/B amplifiers (about 50% efficient). As such, digital amps tend to run much cooler and therefore do not require the heavy heat sinks associated with high-powered analog amplifiers, hence the overall weight of a digital amp may not be a reliable indicator of its intrinsic quality. For instance, Axiom’s eight-channel digital A1400-8 has received superb reviews. And while it’s not exactly light (58 lbs), it still weighs much less than its multi-channel analog competitors whose output power is often about 200 watts per channel, yet typically weigh from 90 to 125 pounds. Moreover, as an 8-channel power amp, the A1400-8 is much more compact than many analog rivals, one of the great advantages of high-quality digital designs.

    For conventional analog Class A/B amplifiers, weight can be an indicator of good, robust design because it suggests that the amplifier’s important internal components--the power transformer, heat sinks, and storage capacitors -- are large, and therefore have plenty of capacity to process and store large amounts of power to handle loud dynamic peaks without distortion.

    By contrast, an analog amplifier that weighs less may use a smaller transformer with inadequate capacity and fewer or thinner heat sinks (heat sinks look like radiator fins and are used to dissipate output transistor heat generated by high power output and big dynamic swings).
     
  12. vpantvaidya

    vpantvaidya Auditioning

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    I was looking into some reviews to find out how these receivers in my shortlist perform under load. Here's what I find:
    - Onkyo's seem to be doing pretty bad under 7 channel loads (sometimes to the extent of going in protection mode)
    - the Marantzes as well as the Denon CI models and the Pioneer Elite SC series models seem to be delivering 60%+ under that kind of load

    While I understand that there are no real life situations where the amp would be subject to such a load, I guess these tests would give some idea of the power delivering capacity of the amp.
    My shortlist has Denon AVR-991 (not a CI model) and Pioneer Elite VSX-32/33 (not an SC model), so I am not sure if those models will deliver performance comparable with their higher end cousins. So from this, Marantz remains the only safe option.

    About the power supplies, I was able to find following info:
    Marantz - AB amp, linear power supply, EI core xformer
    Pio Elite - advanced direct energy (MOSFET amplification)
    Denon - fully discrete power, stable power supply
    Onkyo - H.C.P.S. (High Current Power Supply) Massive High Power Transformer

    In summary, the Denon and Onkyo information does not tell much.
    Does the Pio Elite advanced direct energy mean class D amplification?
    Marantz provides the clearest info indicating it is not using a switched power supply and that the amp is class AB not class D.

    Again based on this, seems like Marantz and Elite would be good choices.
     
  13. gene c

    gene c Producer

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    They would all be good choices .


    Only the SC model Elites are class D.


    BTW, in case you weren't aware of it the Elite 32 is almost identicle to the standard Pioneer 1120. The 32 has a 12 volt trigger, orange display and a two year warranty and maybe some other small thing. 31 = 1020 and 30 = 920. The 32/1120 have stronger amp sections than the lower models.


    Thanks Al for expanding on the weight thing. Panasonic made a digital amp receiver a couple of years ago that only weighed 11 lbs! But apparently it was still a capable performer when it came to power output (but was severly lacking in other areas).
     
  14. vpantvaidya

    vpantvaidya Auditioning

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    I listened to the Onkyo 708, Denon 991 at Fry's and the Elite VSX-32/33, Marantz 6005 at BestBuy = the Elite sounded the most awesone followed by the Marantz. Actually the 6005 did sound cleaner and the Elite had more sound than the Marantz(not sure if that was distortion / from the soundtrack). So finally i decided to go for one of the Elite receivers VSX-32/33. But seems like if I buy over the web, I would not get the warranty. I confirmed that in a phone cal with Pioneer. Marantz did say that purchases from authorized web dealers carry full warranty.
    Since I understand VSX 1120-K is the same as the VSX-32 - I am thinking of buying that over web.

    I have just one concern about the Pioneer and the Onkyo models - their power consumption is listed as 400W while the Denon's and Marantzes take 650+ watts. Do you think with such a low power consumption, these guys can deliver the goods? They certainly sounded very good.
     
  15. gene c

    gene c Producer

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    I have a 2-3 year old Pioneer Elite 94txh that's rated 140 X 7 and pulls only 530 watts from the wall. Those two specs seem to contradict each other but it's really a pretty strong amp. I also had a vsx-32 for about a month. It was not in the same league as the 94 power-wise. Not that bad, but not nearly as strong. I think the Denon and Marantz you're looking at would have stronger amp sections than the 32/1120. On the positive side, Pioneers are the coolest running receivers I've ever encountered. They barely even get luke-warm. This leads me to believe they are fairly efficient. Less power lost to heat. Harman Kardons probably have the strongest amps of them all, despite their lower advertised ratings (the 2600 is currently $499 with free shipping on H/K's website). The 110 wpc 7550 consumes 1405 watts. My 7200-1200 watts and a previously owned 65 wpc 435 consumed 1000 watts. But again, consumption is just one thing to look at. And how efficient an amp is has a lot to do with it. Lots of watts in but not much out isn't good either.


    Good thing about the 1120/32 and 6005 is they have pre-outs for an external amp. That's where the real power is.
     
  16. vpantvaidya

    vpantvaidya Auditioning

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    Thanks a lot Gene. I really appreciate your feedback. Regards...
     
  17. hill1

    hill1 Auditioning

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    you say no difference between the 2 models, found these in 5 minutes


    VSX1120 Elite32


    video processor--Marvel Anchor Bay


    Dac's for audio--"doesn't say" Burr Brown


    Digital core--Texas Instruments Aurious Freescale



    I can almost assure you the vsx1120 doesn't use Burr Brown dac's, which are found in more high end audio receivers. The above are major differences in both audio and video processing, and I'm sure there are many more significant differences. Good luck.
     
  18. TonyD

    TonyD Who do we think I am?
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    Whom are you directing this towards?
     
  19. gene c

    gene c Producer

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    Probably directed at me ) the 1120 and 32 are pretty much the same inside.
     
  20. Michael Reuben

    Michael Reuben Studio Mogul

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