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Buying Onkyo 595 over Denon 1802 doesn't make sense to me.

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by RonGat, Jan 14, 2002.

  1. RonGat

    RonGat Auditioning

    Jan 12, 2002
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    I recently purchased an Onkyo 595 for my new HT but am now having some buyers remorse. I now think I should have bought the Denon 1802 instead. First off, I want to let you know that I could not hear any real differences sonically between the two receivers (with my newbie ears) when I auditioned them. Most people on this forum seem to agree that the performance of each is similar. The Denon just seems to have so many more features than the Onkyo. With the general consensus of the sound quality and power of the two receivers being approximately equal, I really don't understand why anyone (including myself) should buy the Onkyo.

    Here are major advantages of the Denon:

    1. Full PLII--By this I mean that the Denon has the full range of adjustments to PLII (panorama, etc.). The Onkyo has just the basic watered down version.

    2. Pre-outs--The Denon has pre-outs for the front three channels. The Onkyo has none

    3. Front inputs--The Denon has front inputs (including optical). The Onkyo has none.

    4. Optical out--The Denon has an optical output that can be used for recording digital material, etc. The Onkyo has none.

    Here are the major advantages of the Onkyo:

    1. Remote control--The Onkyo's remote is better. It doesn't light up, it doesn't learn (although it is programmable), and doesn't have macros. I had to buy a $30 learning remote to control all my stuff anyway (Radio Shack remote, don't remember the number). In addition, the Onkyo is ~ $50 more expensive anyway (online), so extra remote cost with the Denon is basically nil.

    There are a few other slight differences (i.e. 2/2 coax/optical inputs in the Onkyo vs. 1/3 coax/optical inputs in the Denon), but nothing as major as I discussed above. I still have the chance to return my Onkyo and get the Denon but I'm afraid that I'm missing something vitally important in the decision making process because the Onkyo is so popular on this forum. Please let me know what I'm missing. Let me know why I should stick to the Onkyo.

  2. KevinGS

    KevinGS Stunt Coordinator

    Nov 21, 2001
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    When I was purchasing a receiver Xmas '99, I too was looking at the Denon 1800 and Onkyo 595 and some Yamaha.

    I believe I chose the Denon over the Onkyo for a few reasons:

    1. Onkyo owners reviews on audioreview.com were complaining about quality and noise problems.

    2. The Denon had binding posts for all speakers, I think the Onkyo did not.

    3. I could get a better price on the Denon.

    I believe there were more but it's been 2 years and can't remember any more and I am happy with my selection.

    good luck

  3. Eric_M

    Eric_M Stunt Coordinator

    Dec 13, 1999
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    Great, give me second thoughts why don't you?

    I just purchased a 595 and waiting for it to arrive.

    Now you have me wondering about the Denon again.

    The main thing that kept me away from the Denon was the interface. I just did not like the way it was laid out.

    The onkyo is much better in this way.

    The outs are nice, but they are just for the front 3 which is still better than nothing I suppose.

    The big advantage with the Denon it seems is the diff DPLII settings.
  4. Thomas_Berg

    Thomas_Berg Screenwriter

    Feb 28, 2001
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    Real Name:
    i chose the 595 over the Denon b/c of:

    1) remote (big factor!)

    2) i (again) like the interface of the Onkyo better

    3) PRICE!! you cant get the Denon for much under $500 from an authorized dealer. i paid $359 + shipping from J&R (a major authorized e-tailer) for the Onkyo...that's the biggest thing that sold me.

    Kevin- the Onkyo DOES has binding posts for all speaker outs.

    i can live with inputs in the back only. also, i wouldnt use the digital out for anything. i also have 2 coax sources so i need both digital inputs (anyways, coax > optical IMO). the only thing i wish my 595 had is preouts for all channels. other than that, i'm happy.
  5. Nick G

    Nick G Stunt Coordinator

    Aug 12, 2001
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    FWIW I own a Onkyo 595 and a Denon 1602 (I almost got the 1802 but it did no do anything that the 1602 did not do that I wanted) and if I were to get a another receiver in the same price range today it would be another 595. Obviously if you need pre outs then you do not get the 595. The 595 has been rock solid, plays strong, is very user friendly when playing around with different settings and configurations and has a real remote. That being said, the Denon is a good product too, but feels (subjectively) less substancial (sp?), marginal remote, and also a manual which is a way sub par (the Onkyo manual is not great but is way ahead of Denon). Sonicly I think they are equal. At any give price point in the Denon and Onkyo line you will find similar sound between the two manufacturers. We tend to obsess (I am as guility of this as anyone) about receivers when in fact the sound we hear is almost all speaker choice, room acoustics and speaker placement. Those really are the areas we should be obsessing about. If chooseing between Denono and Onkyo my thinking is to buy whichever receiver that is within your budget and has the features you really need. For me if both Denon and Onkyo had the features I needed, I would probably go with the Onkyo. A personal preferece thing mostly. Hope this helps.

    Reagrds, Nick

    PS I think the (good) problem we have is that there are too damn many really good receivers to pick from.
  6. Mike Kao

    Mike Kao Second Unit

    Oct 31, 2000
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    I've owned both the Onkyo TX-DS575 and the Denon AVR-1801 and I personally felt that the Denon was superior in terms of build quality and most importantly, sound quality. I'm not sure, but I suspect it had a better amp. I am now a proud owner of a Harman Kardon AVR-510. It's a bit buggy, and shuts off by itself randomly at times, but when it's working, I'm in audio heaven! Smoothest, cleanest sound I've heard from any receiver I've ever owned
  7. DaveF

    DaveF Moderator

    Mar 4, 2001
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    One Loudoun, Ashburn, VA
    Real Name:
    David Fischer
    I don't think you are "missing" anything: Onkyo builds a good product for a fair price, and there are many pleased owners around here (including me; a 696). Likewise, Denon builds a good product, better in some ways, lesser in others.
    Since you find the Denon receiver to have more of the features you want, it seems clear that you should get it instead of the Onkyo. I've heard nothing but praises for Denon around here.
    But a few questions about its advantages:
    1) Full DPL: Ok, ya got me there. I'd like that too [​IMG]
    2) 3 pre-outs: will you use these? What do you do with front-channel pre-outs?
    3) Front inputs: a nice, handy feature. But will you use them? I wouldn't mind having them, yet I have no use for them.
    4) Optical out: likewise, do you want to record digitally? Do you have recorders that accept digital input?
    If you answer those "Yes", "Maybe" or even "I'd sleep better at night knowing they're there", then get the Denon! [​IMG]
  8. Vietor

    Vietor Stunt Coordinator

    Jul 13, 2001
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    What do you mean that the Onkyo Remote doesn't learn??

    I mapped the important buttons of my BrokSonic (shaddup, I'm a college student at the moment, it was a gift, and I don't want to lug more then a 13" screen around anyway) TV/VCR to it. No problem, followed the directions, pointed one remote into the other, fired away, and now only have to use one remote.

    How is that not learning?

    I have been very happy with my 595. The remote rocks, I have no complaints about it at all. If I crank the volume level to 70, with a null input it gets noisy, with analogue obviously, and with digital too, but I think that that is because of the source (my computer, once again just shaddup if you have a problem with that). But since reference calibrates to a volume of around 60, it is really not an issue.

    A big part of my choice was that I was able to get it from a local dealer for $430 and I would prefer to buy local if I can.

    Overall I think the differences are less then you would imainge. Besides your just going to upgrade it someday arn't you? ;-p
  9. RichardH

    RichardH Supporting Actor

    Nov 28, 2000
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    Onkyo rocks!
    So does Denon.
    Just be glad you didn't get like a Sony DE recevier with 43,000 DSP modes you'll never use and subpar build quality. Forget your buyer's remorse and enjoy your receiver!!
    I recently set up my friend's home theater, and I looked at all the receivers in the $500 range, and I ended up with the 595. The Denon is also a solid receiver, but I liked the 2/2 digital inputs on the Onkyo.
    Some other nice things the 595 has are turn-on volume memory and maximum volume setting.
    Sonically, I'd bet you wouldn't be able to hear the difference between the two using the kind of speakers that would normally be hooked up to a $500 receiver. You might hear a "difference" but not a clear-cut "this one is better."
    Love the one you got, man!! [​IMG]
    If you returned the Onkyo and got the Denon you'll kick yourself over something else, trust me. FWIW I have an older Denon 1700, and it's worked great. But I wouldn't automatically get another Denon. Wouldn't automatically get an Onkyo either!!
  10. ChrisAG

    ChrisAG Supporting Actor

    Aug 26, 2001
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    Doesn't the Onkyo also have composite to S-video conversion?
  11. Mike__D

    Mike__D Supporting Actor

    Dec 27, 2000
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    Do people even read the damn manual? [​IMG]
    I've seen this a few times about people not knowing to use/program Onkyo's remote. Please, before you make a comment that it's not a learning remote and doesn't have macros, pick up your owner's manual, and uhhhh, read it!
    Not only do I have 4 or 5 macros programmed in, I taught it the major functions of my digital cable box so I can navigate the onscreen menu's easily.
  12. Chuck C

    Chuck C Screenwriter

    Jan 6, 2001
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    I have both the 575x and 1801, and both have their positive attributes. The Onkyo is very easy to use and the remote is off the hook (mine lights up, it's too bad the 595's doesn't). The Denon has more tweaks and is built slightly better. It even looks nicer, although both are relatively not-nice looking. I understand that the new 1802 has binding posts on all channels...the 1801 has binding posts on the front three channels only, but with the new model, it's a non-issue.

    As far as sound, I haven't done any direct comparisons yet. Given the choice between the 595 and 1802, I'd lean towards the Denon by a small margin.
  13. Sergio Stephano

    Dec 13, 2001
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    hey man i just bought the Onkyo 595 thi exact night over the denon 1802...the reason was this...

    the remote and the easy use and the price factor.

    The denon has the dpl full but you're not gonna use dpl unless you do alot of vhs veiwing..are ya?

    Just be happy and think that in 3 years u will upgrade anyways!
  14. ReggieW

    ReggieW Screenwriter

    Mar 6, 2001
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    As everyone here has said, you cannot go wrong with either as they both basically offer the same features in their price range with some slight variances. I have the 1802, and wouldn't trade it for the 595 or vice versa. Either of these two great units should make you happy. I live in an apartment, so I can only play my unit so loud. However, I do believe the adjustable DPL2 is a BIG plus for the Denon, and that the Onkyo has a better remote. If you have a 595 already, then stick with it.......and be rest assured that you'll probably be upgrading in another year or two anyway!


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