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Need advice: Harman AVR520/320 ok for AV1+?


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12 replies to this topic

#1 of 13 bruin

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Posted April 22 2003 - 06:51 PM

I don't listen to stuff really loud...loudest is 94db tops. I just want to make sure that the 520 or 320 can handle 3 AV1+'s for the fronts and 8ohm speakers for the rears. I need advice on these receivers as well as other opinions within a $400 shipped budget.

#2 of 13 Brian Bunge

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Posted April 23 2003 - 02:29 AM

AFAIK the H/K receivers are 4 ohm stable so I think they should be fine with three A/V-1+'s across the front. I don't know of any other receivers in your price range that are 4 ohm stable. Stay away from the ones with the switch on the back. That's just a current limiting band-aid to keep you from damaging your receiver.
Brian Bunge
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#3 of 13 bruin

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Posted April 23 2003 - 02:37 AM

Hey Brian,

You have AV1+s as part of your setup right? Or at least I remember you posted one time that you listened to them. What did you use?

#4 of 13 Brian Bunge

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Posted April 23 2003 - 02:52 AM

I'm using a pair of A/V-1+'s with an Adire Audio LCC center channel. My receiver is a Sherwood Newcastle R-945MKII. It is rated for a 4 ohm load and it has never given me a bit of trouble. Also, I have reason to believe that the Newcastle and H/K receivers are built by the same people and are very similar in build quality.
Brian Bunge
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#5 of 13 Martice

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Posted April 23 2003 - 03:24 AM

Hi Bruin, I would just make a one time purchase for a power amp so that no matter what speakers you may choose, you have the power covered. As far as how different amps may sound and what not, don't worry about it because your room, source material and speakers are the most important in your chain and will make the most obvious differences in your listening experience.

I would look on Audiogon and pick up a nice 100 watt per channel second hand amp from anywhere between $150-$250. It is a one time purchase unless you move to a very large room, move to very inefficient speakers or you need to replace the amp.

The best part is that you no longer have to worry about the power specs of a potential receiver because you have that covered with your separate amp.


Good Luck.
Turn Key Guy!

#6 of 13 Darren_T

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Posted April 23 2003 - 06:36 AM

To add to Martice's suggestions...

When you go with separates you also don't have to keep buying the next state of the art high powered receiver/processor because you don't need the onboard amps. Going with separates was one of the best things I did for my system. When you want to upgrade your receiver you can generally buy the lower end of the high end line and get most if not all of the switching, inputs and outputs at a fraction of the cost because you aren't paying for the beefed up power supply and amps.

On another note. I have an Onkyo TX-DS 777 and I ran it with five 4 ohm AV1+'s for quite a while and it performed great.

Darren

#7 of 13 Ronnie Ferrell

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Posted April 23 2003 - 07:41 AM

I have the 520, A/V-1s and an A/V-C.

From HKs 320/520 FAQ

Question: Can my surround-sound receiver handle a 4-ohm load?

Answer: All Harman Kardon Audio/Video receivers can handle most 4 and 6 ohm speakers on the market today. However, there are some manufacturers' speakers that have a minimum impedance well below the 4 and 6 ohm nominal impedance. In this situation, the receiver will protect itself by going into standby mode. This will not damage the speakers or the electronics, but it is an indication that the speaker in question is not compatible with our receiver. Note: The continued use of the receiver with speakers that cause it to shut down can result in eventual failure of the receiver which is not covered by the warranty.

This faq applies to: AVI200 AVI200MKII AVI250 AVR 110 AVR 120 AVR 125 AVR 210 AVR 220 AVR 225 AVR 310 AVR 320 AVR 510 AVR 520 AVR 8000 AVR10 AVR100 AVR15 AVR20 AVR20MKII AVR25 AVR25MKII AVR30 AVR300 AVR35 AVR40 AVR45 AVR5 AVR500 AVR55 AVR65 AVR70 AVR7000 AVR70MKII AVR75 AVR80 AVR80MKII AVR85



If you don't go with separates right away, the 520 is especially good for adding separates later on. It has amp inputs so you can use the amps you will be bypassing with the separates to drive speakers in another room or for a 6.1/7.1 setup. Pretty versatile receiver! The 320 only has pre-outs for separates and you loose the use of the amps you have paid for in the receiver when going to separates.

I too prefer separates to receivers. I use a 12 year old Parasound HCA-2200 MK-I to drive my A/V-1s. Can you say overkill!


Ronnie
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#8 of 13 bruin

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Posted April 23 2003 - 03:59 PM

How about using my AVR 320's preouts for the mains to a separate stereo amp. This would relieve the AVR320 of 2 channels. There is nothing wrong with this scenario is there?

Ronnie, regaring the 520, did you mean that say i used a stereo amp for the fronts I could somehow connect the 520 and the stereo amp so the fronts could use the power from both the 520 and the amp?

I'm not very familiar with the main ins and preouts feature combination. If you guys can give me links where I can read more about this please do so. I'd rather read than bug you guys about each question that comes up. Thanks

James

#9 of 13 Martice

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Posted April 23 2003 - 10:51 PM

Quote:
How about using my AVR 320's preouts for the mains to a separate stereo amp. This would relieve the AVR320 of 2 channels. There is nothing wrong with this scenario is there?


Nope. That's exactly what we are suggesting to you.


Quote:
Ronnie, regaring the 520, did you mean that say i used a stereo amp for the fronts I could somehow connect the 520 and the stereo amp so the fronts could use the power from both the 520 and the amp?


From what I've read, that is not what Ronnie suggested. Once you connect the 2 channel power amp to your receivers left and right main preouts, the rest of the power in the receiver can now run the center channel and surrounds with less effort and with little risk of experiencing audible distortion and power draining movie passages that induce receiver shutdowns.

What Ronnie did say was that the 520 receiver allows you to use the bypassed channels to power speakers in a 6 or 7.1 surround setup or even power another audio system in another room (multi-room feature).

Quote:
The 320 only has pre-outs for separates and you loose the use of the amps you have paid for in the receiver when going to separates.

As I said earlier, I don't look at it as you loosing your amplification. In fact, I look at it as your receiver now not having to divide the power in 5 ways but in a less demanding 3 ways which should equate to better overall performance from the receiver due to not having to push the more demanding front left and right speakers.


Quote:
Pretty versatile receiver!


I'm impressed.

Posted Image
Turn Key Guy!

#10 of 13 Ronnie Ferrell

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Posted April 24 2003 - 01:11 AM

Quote:
Quote:
quote:

The 320 only has pre-outs for separates and you loose the use of the amps you have paid for in the receiver when going to separates.



As I said earlier, I don't look at it as you loosing your amplification. In fact, I look at it as your receiver now not having to divide the power in 5 ways but in a less demanding 3 ways which should equate to better overall performance from the receiver due to not having to push the more demanding front left and right speakers.

I knew this but have never really thought of it like that.
Posted ImageVery good point!Posted Image

Ronnie
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#11 of 13 bruin

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Posted April 24 2003 - 02:39 AM

Thanks a bunch for the clarification guys! I've now narrowed my choices a bit. What about a NAD T761. That one is guaranteed to be terrific as with all the reviews I've read. It'll be about $100 more than my budget but used and refurb prices look to be around 500-600 and has the upgradeable features you guys mentioned. Only difference is that most people said the NAD makes speakers sound better... The choices...

#12 of 13 Martice

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Posted April 24 2003 - 04:09 AM

Quote:
Only difference is that most people said the NAD makes speakers sound better... The choices...

I don't know if the NAD will make the speakers sound necessarily better or worst. I think when people claim that their speaker sounds better with another amp or such, more than likely they are experiencing an amp that provides more dynamic headroom and control for the speaker to shine with less effort and distortion to make it simple. Since you don't play your music and movies loud, your main concern should be to have a power source that can comfortably power your speakers while reaching the levels that you find desirable. I can lift 200lbs but a 300lb body builder can lift it easier and with less sweat which means that he would probably be able to lift the 200lbs more times and at higher extremes. Also, if you like listening to music at low levels as well, providing your speakers with adequate power will allow you to hear more high and low end detail because of the same reasons above.

I'm not familiar with the NAD product but the internal amplification may be all you need providing their knowledge and history of power amps but make sure that you look for as much information about the 'QUALITY' of the power and parts before you jump in with both feet.
Turn Key Guy!

#13 of 13 Chris Tsutsui

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Posted April 24 2003 - 12:53 PM

Last Sunday I hooked up 4 GR-research AV-3s + 1 tempests to an HK AVR-125. (45wpc)

I used a JBL S38 as a center channel.

The room was a huge open area with a 20ft vaulted ceiling. I cranked the volume to -4, which was reference, then I cranked it past reference to "0".

During movies like Star wars TPM, the receiver had no problem dishing out the SPLS, it might have just sounded a bit on the fatiguing side.

May I comment that the bass from a single 250W adire alignment tempest was very powerful.. Seemed to have a ton more presence and impact than in my small 1000cf room which has dual adire alignment tempest.

Posted Image

I hate smaller rooms now...



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