Jump to content



Sign up for a free account to remove the pop-up ads

Signing up for an account is fast and free. As a member you can join in the conversation, enter contests and remove the pop-up ads that guests get. Click here to create your free account.

Photo
- - - - -

Denon vs. seperates Question?


This topic has been archived. This means that you cannot reply to this topic.
46 replies to this topic

#1 of 47 OFFLINE   Ted Pugh

Ted Pugh

    Stunt Coordinator



  • 108 posts
  • Join Date: Jan 12 2003

Posted December 23 2004 - 03:18 AM

am curious here on everyones response. I sold my speakers to a buddy of mine who happened to buy my 4802 about a year ago. At the same time he was interested in purchasing my Aragon Stage One pre/pro and B&K 200.5 amp so I transported them to his house and we hooked them up and to both of our surprise the Denon sounded better than the seperates in his room with SACD and DVD Audio as well as Dolby Digital. To say the least he did not buy the seperates from me and he kept the Denon.

This got me to thinking and I was wondering if I could get some input and feedback. Does anyone think that the 5805 or soon to be released 4805 with the Denon 3910 or soon to be released 5910 with the all digital hookup as well as the auto eq/auto cal would sound better than mid fi seperates like the Aragon, B&K, Parasound, Rotel etc. or am I crazy and should just stick to seperates.

I building a new house with a dedicated 22X16 theater and will need to purchase this equipment in late January, early February. I do plan on auditioning as much equipment as possible but in my hometown there is only Denon, Rotel, Aragon, Krell so an in home audition is almost impossible.

Sorry for the long post and everyone have a Merry Christmas and a safe holiday season.

#2 of 47 OFFLINE   Mort Corey

Mort Corey

    Supporting Actor



  • 981 posts
  • Join Date: Nov 21 2003

Posted December 23 2004 - 07:00 AM

A lot would depend on the power requirements of whatever speakers you end up purchasing. From what I've read so far, the Denon 5805 outputs pretty darn close to what they advertise and you'd have the latest and best DAC's available in a receiver (and I'd venture to guess better than many pre-pros). That said, I've also read rumors that Denon is going to start offering separates in the near future so it might be worth waiting to see what their offering turns out to be....could be the best of both worlds.

Mort

#3 of 47 OFFLINE   Robert_Dufresne

Robert_Dufresne

    Stunt Coordinator



  • 247 posts
  • Join Date: Mar 30 2002

Posted December 23 2004 - 04:33 PM

Ted

When you get into the flagship models from Denon, they will compare favorably to midfi seperates.
"and if my grand-mother had wheels she'd be a wagon" Montgomery Scott Eng. USS Enterprise

#4 of 47 OFFLINE   Arthur S

Arthur S

    Screenwriter



  • 2,572 posts
  • Join Date: Jul 02 1999

Posted December 24 2004 - 06:32 AM

>>>soon to be released Denon 4805<<<

What can you tell us about this receiver?

Thanks

Artie

#5 of 47 OFFLINE   Shane Martin

Shane Martin

    Producer



  • 6,017 posts
  • Join Date: Sep 26 1999

Posted December 24 2004 - 09:06 AM

Quote:
>>>soon to be released Denon 4805<<<

What can you tell us about this receiver?
Anything right now is speculation unless someone got more reliable information. I haven't seen a confirmation yet that they are actually releasing a 4805. I hope so because if they include what I think they will, I'll be all over it.

#6 of 47 OFFLINE   Ted Pugh

Ted Pugh

    Stunt Coordinator



  • 108 posts
  • Join Date: Jan 12 2003

Posted December 24 2004 - 03:19 PM

Over at another forum there is a thread concerning the 4805 and it was confirmed by the rep with Audessy (not sure about the spelling) that the 4805 will have the same Auto EQ/Auto Cal as the 5805. Also mentioned that the 4805 will be shipping in early 1st quarter 2005. I beleive that thee 4805 is pretty darn close to the 5805 except with only 7 channels for amps with 135-145 watts of power. I will try to find this link and post it here.

#7 of 47 OFFLINE   Ted Pugh

Ted Pugh

    Stunt Coordinator



  • 108 posts
  • Join Date: Jan 12 2003

Posted December 30 2004 - 01:21 AM

I am really curious why a Denon 5805 vs. seperates would not sound just as good or better. They have the most up to date top of the line DAC's and DSP engines that the high end seperates do not have plus the auto eq/auto cal.
What gives? Is it just audiophile people have an elitist attitude that seperates just sound better? How many people in a true blind test could tell the difference?

#8 of 47 OFFLINE   Paul S

Paul S

    Stunt Coordinator



  • 93 posts
  • Join Date: Nov 01 2003

Posted December 30 2004 - 02:51 AM

Is it just audiophile people have an elitist attitude that seperates just sound better? How many people in a true blind test could tell the difference?

In a single word: NONE

No one to date has been able to tell the difference between amps on highly controlled double blind tests. Many will say they can but when those golden ears are put to the tests they all fail miserably.

#9 of 47 OFFLINE   Elinor

Elinor

    Supporting Actor



  • 559 posts
  • Join Date: Oct 29 2004

Posted December 30 2004 - 04:41 AM

>"No one to date has been able to tell the difference between amps on highly controlled double blind tests. Many will say they can but when those golden ears are put to the tests they all fail miserably."

Yes, the "highly controlled" nature of the tests may have something to do with that.

Now, I don't have golden ears, and I doubt I could tell the difference between 2 similarly priced amps of similar design.

But there is simply no doubt that there are design differences between receivers and high end amps. This is what drives people to upgrade. "My setup just doesn't sound good." Most mediocre lower-powered receivers will just poop out (or worse, clip) on really demanding material. I have some organ music that would have many receivers blowing tweeters and drivers left and right. Separate amps (mine, for example, is a 3-channel unit with separate torroidal transformers for each channel, and enough capacitance to continue playing for a good 30 seconds after I turn them off) are designed for the most demanding use. Receivers seem to be designed for general use, and they show their limitations on demanding material.

Plus, pointing out that amps can't be distinguished in blind tests is only looking at part of the equation. Pre/pros in the $3-5k range and beyond, mated with competent amps, are going to just blow away anything any receiver can do. You could be blind AND DEAF and hear the difference.

It's not just a matter of DACS and DSPs, although I can assure you that no receiver uses the same DACs as, say, a Theta Casablanca III with Extreme DACs. There are many other design elements that are employed in these high end units that are not in receivers. (And if I were more technically savvy, I could enumerate them ... but alas, you'll have to do your own research and reading to find this out).

#10 of 47 OFFLINE   Paul S

Paul S

    Stunt Coordinator



  • 93 posts
  • Join Date: Nov 01 2003

Posted December 30 2004 - 06:10 AM

Elinor why don't you take the $10,000 challenge? I have posted general information for it below. You should be able to tell your superior amp from a Radio Shack every time, right?

For some interesting info about the sound of amps I suggest emailing Richard Clarke - a2000rich@aol.com. He runs the $10,000 AMP challenge. You can request the stats from him.

About the challenge…

There is a contest that pays 10 GRAND to anyone who can correctly identify one amp from another 24 out of 24 times in a blind test.

Although the rules were originally written for car amps the person running the contest has opened the challenge up to home theater amps.

Basically here’s how it works:
Take ANY two amps (Amp 1 and Amp 2).

The amps are tested to find their linear range (i.e. where they operate w/o distortion or clipping).

The linear range of the less powerful amp is selected (so that 10-watt tube amp isn’t driven into clipping while going up against the $10,000 SS amp)

Adjustments are made for the input sensitivity of each amp.

If necessary, the amps are EQ’ed to sound the same, apparently some amp makers boost/cut certain frequencies to give their amp a distinctive sound.

The person taking the challenge decides which amp gets EQ’ed. Yes, you can take a working flea market find, have it EQ'ed, and compare it to a Halcro.

The person taking the contest listens to ANY music they want for however long they want, but the guy running the contest requests that they keep it limited to a few hours.

The person taking the contest can use ANY available commercial speakers; as long as the speakers use cones and the amps being tested can power them.

There will be 2 listening sessions of 24 trials. If anyone can tell the two amps apart 100% of the time, they walk away with $10,000.Above you’ll find the email addy of the guy running the contest. Please contact him for the official rules.BTW – No one has won as of yet. I’d think that anyone who can hear the difference between a $5000 amp and a $10,000 amp at sane listening levels would be all over this. They could compare a $15,000 amp vs. a Radio Shack special and walk away with the cash.

Why don't you give it a shot Elinor, I should think you would be able to tell your super amp from a Radio Shack. Think of it, you could be the first person on the planet able to tell the difference between amps if you win. Such bragging rights alone would be worth the trip.

If you want more information on the challenge, simply go to www.audioholics.com and do a search for $10,000 then click on a thread for smplifier sound.

#11 of 47 OFFLINE   Scott_N

Scott_N

    Second Unit



  • 425 posts
  • Join Date: Jan 22 2003

Posted December 30 2004 - 09:52 AM

How would you EQ a cheap SS amp to sound like my Thor Audio TPA-30 tube amps? Most of these tests always want the EQ or alter in some way the expensive amp. Are you also going to say a receiver will play as loud and as cleanly without compression in demanding action sequences as a high power SS amp? I don't have to do any tests i've compared my Marantz SR-18 to Theta separates and it couldn't handle the beach landing in Private Ryan at the same volume levels as the Theta and that's a fact and it's THX Ultra rated. Quality separate amps have better power supplies than receivers period.

#12 of 47 OFFLINE   Paul S

Paul S

    Stunt Coordinator



  • 93 posts
  • Join Date: Nov 01 2003

Posted December 30 2004 - 10:09 AM

The following is an excerp from a Masters audio archives article dated September 1, 2002:

Several years ago Stereo Review magazine [now Sound & Vision] commissioned an extensive series of listening tests to determine whether those listeners who claimed to be able to discern tiny nuances from one amp to the next really could. The listeners, about two dozen in all, were equally divided between those who swore there were differences ("believers") and those who doubted it ("skeptics").Six amplifiers were auditioned, ranging from a $200 cheapo receiver to a $12,000 pair of mono tube amplifiers. They were teamed up in pairs for comparison, and carefully matched as to levels and other parameters, so that any differences heard really were inherent in the different amplifiers. In any given comparison, the listeners were unaware of which they were listening to at any moment, and as they switched back and forth, they might be toggling between the two components or simply switching the same amp in repeatedly. Then a statistical analysis was done to see, when they claimed to hear differences, how often they were listening to one amplifier in both positions.It was a long drawn-out process, and in my story on it at the time, I concluded that ". . . all interpretations of [the results] lead to the conclusion that correct choices were made totally by chance -- there were no audible differences to be heard. . . . The evidence would seem to suggest that distinctive amplifier sounds, if they exist at all, are so minute that they form a poor basis for choosing one amplifier over another."The result didn't surprise me very much because, ten years earlier, I had taken part in a similar exercise mounted by the then-leading Canadian hi-fi mag, AudioScene Canada. In that case, we started out assuming there would be differences; we wanted to analyze and quantify them, but instead reported that we couldn't hear any.

#13 of 47 OFFLINE   Scott_N

Scott_N

    Second Unit



  • 425 posts
  • Join Date: Jan 22 2003

Posted December 30 2004 - 10:29 AM

What was the process in matching the amps? I find this hard to believe since I don't think EL34 tubes and KT88's sound the same and switched between them with different types of music when I had a Cary V12 amp.

#14 of 47 OFFLINE   Shiu

Shiu

    Second Unit



  • 447 posts
  • Join Date: Feb 18 2003

Posted December 30 2004 - 11:36 AM

I do believe in a highly controlled test (such as the one Paul S described), I will not be able to tell the difference between two amps. The problem is, people don't normally listen to music, or watch movies under those "controlled" conditions. For example, classical music, or movies such as LOTR & Star Wars, tend to expose the weakness of a cheap receiver, due to their demand on dynamic range alone.

That is not to say that one can easily tell between the 5805 and an expensive separate system in a double blind test. But the 5805 is not cheap at all!

I would think that most listeners in a double blind test could do better, if you put the 5805 against a separate system in a different type of also "highly controlled" test(e.g. using a high end DVD/CD player to play materials that covers the full 20 to 20,000 Hz, has extreme dynamic range of say 0 to 115 dB SPL) through some high end speakers.

I still prefer the receiver/power amp set up, for greater flexibility and affordability.

#15 of 47 OFFLINE   Ted Pugh

Ted Pugh

    Stunt Coordinator



  • 108 posts
  • Join Date: Jan 12 2003

Posted December 30 2004 - 03:54 PM

Let's say you put a nice 7 channel amp into the equation with the Denon. How would the Denon 5805 compare with mid to high end seperates like the B&K Ref. 50S2, Anthem AVM 30, Anthem Statement D1, Parasound C1 and C2, Classe SSP300, Krell, etc? I just think The Denon with its Auto EQ/Auto Cal will sound just as good or even better plus it is a whole lot more flexible over any pre/pro which is outdated. The seperates crowd are always saying the high end receivers are outdated which is true but it seems the high end seperates are outdated before they even come out. Most of the companies are slow to come out with updates, etc.

#16 of 47 OFFLINE   NicholasL

NicholasL

    Second Unit



  • 298 posts
  • Join Date: Apr 03 2003

Posted December 30 2004 - 04:10 PM

One thing I remember reading about the 5805 on AVS is that despite Denon's power rating claims, with a single power cord, even with a 20amp socket, the receiver could not even hope to deliver 10 channels of it's proclaimed power.

#17 of 47 OFFLINE   Al Holland

Al Holland

    Extra



  • 16 posts
  • Join Date: Mar 25 2003

Posted December 31 2004 - 01:19 AM

I have never listened to the Denon 5805, however I have owned Denon 5800 series, 4802 and lower series.
Regardless of the model I find all Denons to be thin sounding.
I have probably owned 99% of all brands of receivers in the last 25 years. Most were the high end of the brand. There were many that sounded very good, however I always felt that something was lacking so I was constantly selling, buying or exchanging. To me the Kenwood 6070 was as good if not better than the B&K 307 and others with movies. 2 channel music is another story. Music is where most receivers fail and seperates become better sounding.

Three years ago I switched to mid level seperates and since then I have had no desire to constantly change.

Also, this is not to start a flame with Denon lovers. It is merely to show that sound is very subjective to the listener. Listen to what you like regardless of what others think.

#18 of 47 OFFLINE   Scott_N

Scott_N

    Second Unit



  • 425 posts
  • Join Date: Jan 22 2003

Posted December 31 2004 - 03:12 AM

Flexible? Theta pre/pro's are modular and so are their Dreadnaught amps so you can set them up any way you want them. There is nothing more flexible than that. The Denon 5805 might be the king of receivers but it will go out of date while you can always have a Theta updated.

#19 of 47 OFFLINE   Benihana

Benihana

    Stunt Coordinator



  • 190 posts
  • Join Date: Nov 14 2003

Posted December 31 2004 - 10:43 AM

It all depends on how you use the amps and receivers. If you are a listener that doesn't turn it up much at all to where a receiver isn't stressing at all, it will be next to impossible to tell a difference between "this and that" . If you listen at high levels , where a receiver will not be able to deliver the current needed, a separate amp of choice might be able to, and therefore that will sound *cleaner*(not necessarily better). Spend the money where it counts, on the speakers. The only other mod that will have a significant impact on the sound of a system other than a change of speakers is room acoustic treatments and speaker positioning.

#20 of 47 OFFLINE   Shiu

Shiu

    Second Unit



  • 447 posts
  • Join Date: Feb 18 2003

Posted December 31 2004 - 12:05 PM

Quote:
One thing I remember reading about the 5805 on AVS is that despite Denon's power rating claims, with a single power cord, even with a 20amp socket, the receiver could not even hope to deliver 10 channels of it's proclaimed power.


I don't think Denon has ever claimed their power ratings are for "all channel driven simultaneously". A 15 amp circuit at 120 Volts can supply a total of 1,800 VA. After discounting for a less than 1 (typically lower than 1 lagging for inductive load) power factor and losses, an amp could deliver about 900 to 1,200 watts (depends on the amp's efficiency). So it is almost certain that the 5805 cannot deliver 10 X 170 watts, at least not on continuous basis.

Since most multi-channel materials do not require all channels to be delivering the same power at the same time, I think the design engineers are right to spend relatively more money on the amps rather than the power supply. The 5805 will most likely not able to deliver 170 watts into 10, or even 7 channels at the same time, but I am sure their 1, & 2 channel power output will exceed the specified 170 watts.





Forum Nav Content I Follow