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HK AVR7000 sounds better than Parasound Amp...


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#1 of 29 OFFLINE   Kevin_Breeze

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Posted April 28 2005 - 06:09 AM

Are these flagship HK AVR's the best sounding receivers or is it just me? I bought a 1500A Parasound amp and I think the HK honestly sounded better. The HK seemed smoother and just as if not more detailed. I just remember the HK sounding all around better.

Unfortuantely the HK7000 blew an output stage and thats why I bought the amp as I was going to go to seperates but now I am thinking of buying the newer AVR7200 or 8000 instead. To be fair though I couldn't do A/B testing b/c the HK is dead but my impressions was dissapointment with the Parasound. Not that the parasound sounds bad by any means. It sounds good just not as good as I rememeber the HK sounding.

Maybe its just me but it seems these seperates arent all they are cracked up to be or maybe its just that the high-end all-in-one receivers can be just as good or even better than mid-level seperates.

PS-I know these HK's may not have great reliability or the most features, but from my experience they sound pretty incredible.

#2 of 29 OFFLINE   Jack Briggs

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Posted April 28 2005 - 07:16 AM

Kevin, accepting for differences in power ratings, how can a given piece of electronics, be it a separate amp or an A/V receiver, "sound better"? The only sonic differences you are going to hear have to do with power ratings -- the more powerful the amp/receiver, the more substantive and reserved the sound is at peak volume levels.

#3 of 29 OFFLINE   Carl P

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Posted April 28 2005 - 07:35 AM

So you're saying that every receiver that puts out 100 watts should sound the same? A 100 watt receiver will sound the same as a 100 watt amp/prepro combo?

#4 of 29 OFFLINE   John S

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Posted April 28 2005 - 07:38 AM

I would still suspect the Parasound to be better at the loudest imaginable volume levels. But, the higher end AVR's do at least start to approach that type of performance. I would still say that separates are everything they are cracked up to be.

You can't really base such a broad opinion on just two pieces of equipment either. Spend 30 days on the parasound, and I'd almost bet you have a similar epiphany in the reverse. Posted Image Our ears just plain get used to the way our particular system sounds and it can cause somewhat false impressions when we make changes both for better or worse. Human psych stuff.....

#5 of 29 OFFLINE   Kevin_Breeze

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Posted April 28 2005 - 07:48 AM

Jack,
Wow, you really threw me off with that one...

Amps all produce different tone, different signature sounds and have different distortions levels and so on and so on, I don't understand how you can say power is power and one amp to the next will not produce a different sound given equal power use.

Almost all receivers and amps have sufficient power to listen at lower volumes and based on what you are saying it would mean they would all produce identical sound until you turn them up and even than the equally powered ones would still produce the exact same sound.

Just look at tube amps for example...are you going to tell me that the cheapest sony amp will produce the exact same sound as an equally powered tube amp??

#6 of 29 OFFLINE   David Judah

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Posted April 28 2005 - 07:58 AM

Quote:
Kevin, accepting for differences in power ratings, how can a given piece of electronics, be it a separate amp or an A/V receiver, "sound better"?
I would think anything in the signal path has the potential to sound different from something else. "Better" is a little harder to get a handle on, however.

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Graham: You had disadvantages.
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#7 of 29 OFFLINE   John Garcia

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Posted April 28 2005 - 08:11 AM

What interconnects between the pre and Parasound?

I think amps have a sonic signature, but I don't think the difference is huge unless you are talking about significantly different specs, such as comparing a SS to a Tube amp of the same power - the resulting sound will usually be quite different.

Now, if using two amps that have a similar character, but one has twice the actual output of the first (let's just say 100w vs 200w), you probably would not hear the difference between them at all, UNTIL you crank them to the point where you can hear the strain in the 100w, at which point it would become clear where that extra power is benefiting you - headroom. At that same volume, the 200w isn't even breathing heavy, while the 100w is gasping.

I completely agree with what John S said. Give it some time.

Based on what was said, I think it is more of a personal preference, than the fact that one is better than the other.
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#8 of 29 OFFLINE   Kevin_Breeze

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Posted April 28 2005 - 08:30 AM

I actually forget the IC's between the pre and parasound..I bought the pre and amp second hand and the IC's were included...they aren't junk..I know they cost like $100 new, I just can't remember the name.

I have given it time I have had this amp for a long time now, this happened almost a year ago, I am just now commenting on it b/c I am now deciding between going back to a receiver or continuing with the seperate route.

yes, I have been watching movies in 2-ch for like a year, I want to go back to my beloved DD! lol

By the way have you guys ever heard a flagship HK receiver? I don't know maybe it was the combo with my JBL S312's, but the sound at times amazed me. The detail was phenomenal and the sound seemed so clean and smooth. The parasound seems to produce a harsher sound. I am not denying this could all possibly be psychological, but thats the way it seems at least.

#9 of 29 OFFLINE   Kevin_Breeze

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Posted April 28 2005 - 08:36 AM

Oh also, I never really truly crank my stereo b/c I am still in apartment complex (we just bought a house though...hooray!). I'd imagine the HK would break up first since the parsound has 205 watts per channel compared to the HK's 120? I forget, but I knows its obviously less.

I am still debating to get the 3 channel parasound and a nice pre-pro or another HK receiver or else just spend $200 to get my current one fixed. Obviously the HK route would be a LOT cheaper..

#10 of 29 OFFLINE   John S

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Posted April 28 2005 - 08:36 AM

That was one of my points. Flagship AVR's do at least approach separates performance.

I use a Denon 4802 for nearly 3 years now. I am very content/confident with it, even when my separates friends come over. Nothing but praise for the system

An H/K 7200 is a very nice AVR indeed.

#11 of 29 OFFLINE   Jack Briggs

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Posted April 28 2005 - 09:14 AM

Yes, Kevin, despite what some people here may claim, "all 100-watt receivers," when level-matched, will sound alike. The entire issue of electronics "sound" has been debated ever since the high-end crowd first made such claims back in the day.

#12 of 29 OFFLINE   Kevin_Breeze

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Posted April 28 2005 - 10:38 AM

Jack,
ok well "alike" and identical are two different things. I respect that you are admin of this board and all but I have to disagree with what i think you are indicating. I'm sorry but there is no way a cheap bottom line $200 100w/channel receiver produces the same sound as a $2000 HK reciever or a $5000 Pioneer Elite receiver or a $100,000 top-end seperate setup at pre-clipping volumes.

I know without a doubt that when I replaced my old aging 100 watt per channel pioneer receiver with the HK AVR7000 there was a definite difference in sound quality.


Do you also hold the belief that all CD players produce the same sound and radio shack rip cord produces the same sound as $100+ cables? i actually didn't used to believe the cable thing until i replaced my rip cord with nice speaker cables and there was a noticeable difference in bass that was more pronounced and tighter that even my girlfriend noticed. I do believe however that at a certain pricepoint its wasted money.

Do you believe the only thing truly affecting sound of the source material is the speakers and the amount of power?

I honestly believe that some people just simply don't have the hearing ability of others. Have there ever been blind tests to prove or disprove these arguments?

#13 of 29 OFFLINE   John Garcia

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Posted April 28 2005 - 11:10 AM

Quote:
I honestly believe that some people just simply don't have the hearing ability of others. Have there ever been blind tests to prove or disprove these arguments?

Well, according to some, there is have been studies and the results supported, in most cases, that most people couldn't tell the difference. HOWEVER, one study that was discussed here about a year ago found that one of the people in the study (a musician I believe) could pick out very subtle differences with an almost 100% accuracy. This is why I also completely agree with you that a person's sensitivity to sound can be a big factor, but it may be more about having a certain level of "training" or expericence to know exactly what to listen for to detect those subtle differences. The study's explaination of the "anomally" was that he picked up on certain aspects of the sound not actually present in the music, but in background noise or something to that effect, so he had "learned" which was which. So, in terms of benefit, it comes down to the individual user as to whether or not they can hear the differences, and/or whether or not they are willing to pay for the difference. I say, try out the good stuff. If you can't hear the difference, then you are wasting your money. That way, you know for yourself. I did various trials of interconnects and wire, and kept the ones that I felt were reasonably priced for what I was hearing.

We've had the amp/wire/interconnect/capacitor debates here many times, and they ALWAYS come to no real conclusion. It would probably be good if we didn't start down that path again.
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#14 of 29 OFFLINE   Kevin_Breeze

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Posted April 28 2005 - 11:19 AM

Hmm, great info John. Can you imagine if this is all just one big placebo effect and people here are dumping tons of money for nothing!

Honestly, I believe without a single doubt that there is a clear and obvious difference in sound between quality components and budget/low quality components. At the same time I believe there is a quality point that you reach at the lower-mid price level where beyond it there really isn't much difference if any.

We all do agree that speakers without a doubt greatly affect SQ though right?

#15 of 29 OFFLINE   Kevin_Breeze

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Posted April 28 2005 - 11:24 AM

One thing I'd like to add that IMO would sort of prove theres a difference: Take a low quality amp hook up some speakers with 100' long radio shack ripcord. turn up the volume halfway while a CD is on Pause. gaurantee you hear a good amount of hiss.

Now hook up a high end reciever with same amount of power per channel and hook up same speakers with quality cables 10' long and turn up the volume and there will be less hiss.

Lower end Amp's produce more distortion & noise and i also believe lower quality IC's will introduce noise as well which can sort of be proven by using long runs of it. The longer it is the more the sound is affected by whats there. if there is no effect it wouldnt increas with longer runs b/c there'd be nothing to be increased...

Hopefully you guys understand what i am trying to say...

#16 of 29 OFFLINE   John Garcia

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Posted April 28 2005 - 12:09 PM

ICs (interconnects) and their respective quality, depending on what you are connecting, definitely make a difference - much more noticable than speaker wire ever could, IMO. The difference becomes extremely obvious when you compare a $5 IC, like the ones included "in the box", and a $100 IC (figuratively, not going on cost alone). The difference between a $30 IC and a $100 one would be much less obvious though, so if you aren't willing to spend the extra $70 for a small difference, then don't Posted Image ICs and wire are secondary considerations in most systems; the bigest differences will be had at the component level - source, receiver/pre, amps, and definitely speakers.
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#17 of 29 OFFLINE   Shiu

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Posted April 28 2005 - 12:34 PM

Quote:
I honestly believe that some people just simply don't have the hearing ability of others. Have there ever been blind tests to prove or disprove these arguments?


I think you are right, but I have also read about those double blind tests that showed most people could not tell the difference between amplifiers under some controlled conditions. So if you can tell the difference between a Parasound amp and an AVR7000 then you are one of those who have the ability to hear the subtle difference. That said, I think it is possible that others who have the same ability as you do, may think the Parasound sounds better to them. "Difference" could be an objective matter, "better" is a different story, it could be subjective.

I am not sure I can tell the difference between my Denon reciever's internal amps and my separate amps, but I can easily tell the difference between speakers.

#18 of 29 OFFLINE   RobWil

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Posted April 28 2005 - 01:30 PM

Quote:
Yes, Kevin, despite what some people here may claim, "all 100-watt receivers," when level-matched, will sound alike.


Yeah, everyone knows that a Conrad Johnson Sonographe SA-250 sounds just like a 125wpc Yammy! LOL!
that's my story and I'm stickin' to it!

#19 of 29 OFFLINE   Shiu

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Posted April 28 2005 - 01:51 PM

Quote:
Yeah, everyone knows that a Conrad Johnson Sonographe SA-250 sounds just like a 125wpc Yammy! LOL!


With some entry level Bose speakers??

#20 of 29 OFFLINE   John Garcia

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Posted April 28 2005 - 06:48 PM

Everything sounds the same on Bose...
HT: Emotiva UMC-200, Emotiva XPA-3, Carnegie Acoustics CSB-1s + CSC-1, GR Research A/V-1s, Epik Empire, Oppo BDP-105, PS4, PS3,URC R-50, APC-H10, Panamax 5100 Bluejeans Cable
System Two: Marantz PM7200, Pioneer FS52s, Panasonic BD79
(stolen) : Marantz SR-8300, GR Research A/V-2s, Sony SCD-222ES SACD, Panasonic BD-65, PS3 60G (250G)

Everybody is a genius, but if you judge a fish by its ability to climb a tree, it’ll spend its whole life believing that it is stupid.” – Albert Einstein

 



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