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Replacement receiver??? (Pioneer VSX-821)

Discussion in 'AV Receivers' started by minsiman, Jan 28, 2012.

  1. minsiman

    minsiman Auditioning

    Dec 19, 2011
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    So my current receiver, a Sony model, is slowly dying (I think). The previous owner of the house I recently purchased left all the theater equipment, but mentioned the receiver was going. So far I've lost all right side speakers and the display no longer lights up (no matter how many buttons I press). I'm not quite an enthusiast just yet, but I have an awesome movie theater room. My budget isn't huge, and knowing all of this the previous owner (guy who built the theater) recommended the Pioneer VSX-821 5.1-Channel receiver as a good moderately priced replacement. So, my question is, is his recommendation good? Newegg.com has a great deal on this receiver, but this weekend only. I appreciate any help you all can give this novice!
  2. Al.Anderson

    Al.Anderson Screenwriter

    Jul 2, 2002
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    The VSX-821 is Pioneer's entry level receiver, it's a fine one, but no better than any other entry level receiver receiver from one of the mainstream manufacturers ... unless you have more specific requirements. However, if an entry level receiver with no specific bells or whistles will suffice, you could probably do better on price. Newegg has it listed for $329, which is the list price. I've seen similar Pioneers at Costco (yesterday) for $250. You didn't mention the size of your room, the VSX-821 is 80wpc, which is acceptable, but may not be enough for a large room or for low efficiency speakers. (BTW, low efficiency speakers aren't inherently bad, it's just a characteristic of the speaker. So if you don't have speakers yet you may find you like some that require a little extra juice.) As far as bells and whistles (network, internet, analog up-conversion, etc), you'll have to research some more and see if anything appeals to you. I suggest starting by hopping on a manufacturer's site and compare the lowest model to the highest and see what the lowest doesn't have and decide if you'll need it in the immediate future. If you're looking for strictly the best price for feature set, Onkyo usually has that market segment.
  3. gene c

    gene c Producer

    Aug 5, 2003
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    Bay area, Ca
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    In addition to what Al suggested, I like the Denon 1611/1612 because it's the lowest model with the highest version of it's room correction. It includes Audyssey MuliEQ.The Onkyo 509 has Audyssey 2EQ and the Pioneer 821 has the basic version of MCACC. You need to jump up to the 1021 to get the more advanced version of MCACC. Room correction really works. The better version, the better results. Ac4l.com has the Denon 1611 (7.1 and analog to digital video conversion) and the 1612 (5.1, no video conversion but maybe some things the 1611 doesn't have) as factory refurbs with a one year warranty for $219 + shipping each. They also have the Onkyo 509 for $199 + sh. Also, Walmart and Costco are not listed as authorized dealers for Pioneer so they may not honor the warranty (but Costco/Walmart might honor it themselves. Maybe, maybe not). Newegg is listed as an authorized dealer.

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