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Pioneer Elite VSX-84TXSI or Marantz SR7001???????


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15 replies to this topic

#1 of 16 OFFLINE   BrentSP

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Posted May 08 2007 - 03:27 PM

I can get either of these for around the same price. I watch a lot of movies and also watch a lot of music 5.1 DVD concerts. I believe the Pioneer is over rated in power and the Marantz is under rated.....is that correct? Please help.

#2 of 16 OFFLINE   Stephen Hopkins

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Posted May 09 2007 - 01:50 AM

I would say both are pretty accurately rated in terms of power. I would say listen to them, side-by-side if at all possible, and decide based on how each sounds for both movies and music. Generally speaking the Marantz will have a warmer and more musical sound while the Pioneer will be more neutral and likely more accurate for movies. That said both should do extremely well for both tasks. Features of the two are extremely similar with the Pioneer having video scaling to 720p and 1080i for 480i sources while the Marantz only does 480i to 480p. If you do go with the Pioneer make sure you have a model with a build date of February '07 or newer... these units have the most up-to-date firmware that fixes some video scaling artifacts and the -10db LFE on PCM over HDMI. (only an issue on HD-DVD, BluRay, or DVD-A over HDMI). The Marantz also has the -10db LFE on PCM over HDMI bug but has a very simple work-around. The Marantz's LFE channel can be adjusted independantly for each input... though you'll need a seperate input setup for Standard DVD (over optical/coax w/ LFE at regular level) and HD-DVD/BluRay/DVD-A (over HDMI with LFE boosted +10).

#3 of 16 OFFLINE   BrentSP

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Posted May 09 2007 - 02:08 AM

Can't both of these units be updated with the current firmware via PC?

#4 of 16 OFFLINE   Stephen Hopkins

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Posted May 09 2007 - 02:29 AM

I know for a fact that the Pioneer must be taken into an authorized service center for firmware updates. I had my Elite 82TXs done about 2 months ago. The process requires 2 cables, one being RS232 and the other being a proprietary interface inside the receiver. The Marantz I'm not sure about.

#5 of 16 OFFLINE   BrentSP

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Posted May 09 2007 - 02:42 AM

Man I'm torn and theres no way of me testing them side by side. Deep down I want to try a Marantz but the CNET review is scaring me a bit. They compared it to a Pioneer non elite receiver and for movies the Pioneer was more intense and had a better surround impact. I'll be watching movies most of the time. Back in the mid to late 90s I had a Elite VSX-09TX with the pretty wood sides and it was a fine receiver but it did crap out on me after 5 years (I still have it in the attic). The HDMI is something I'm not to concerned about. I still have my 55" rear projection with S-Video that I'm perfectly happy with but if it ever craps out on me then I'm sure I'll be getting one with HDMI. How do you like your 82 would you have bought it again?

#6 of 16 OFFLINE   Stephen Hopkins

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Posted May 09 2007 - 03:15 AM

I love my 82TXs... I'll even go as far as saying it was worth the hassle of being one of the first to have the firmware update done in the southeast. Since I was the first in the area they had to have me drop off my unit and wait for Pioneer to send them the cables... this took about 2 weeks. Now everyone else after me can have theirs done while they wait. After having the update done I can say that I'm completely satisfied w/ the 82TXs in terms of sound, features, and overall quality. That said, I'm sure I would have been just as happy with the SR7001. I was originaly considering it and the 82TXs. Both were (as in your case) sold by different stores. Before I bought either I ended up receiving a Yamaha RX-V1700 for Christmas... I was VERY unsatisfied w/ the sound as well as some other quirks (audio dropouts during source switching, horrible remote). Because of where the Yamaha was purchased the only unit I was interested in and could exchange for was the 82TXs. After sorting out the firmware issue I've been extremely happy. One thing to consider is the SR7001 is available for $900 recertified from accessories4less.com . Marantz recertified gear carries a 1yr warranty (most refurbs are only 90 days) and can be bumped up to 3yrs for only $35 more. If I'd been buying instead of receiving a gift and had found this deal at the time I probably would have jumped on it in a heartbeat.

#7 of 16 OFFLINE   BrentSP

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Posted May 09 2007 - 10:08 AM

Stephen, thanks so much for your help and especially the link to accessories4less. They didn't have the SR7001 in stock but they did have the SR8500 2006 model for 699 and I bought it instead. I bought the 3 year warranty also. I actually bidded (ebay) on a USED 8500 last week that ended up going for $840!! Thanks so much!!

#8 of 16 OFFLINE   Stephen Hopkins

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Posted May 09 2007 - 03:51 PM

The 8500 will be an astounding sounding unit... and even if you do add an HD-DVD or BluRay player on down the road you're covered as long as the player decodes and has 5.1ch or 7.1ch analog outputs. Congratulations on a fine high end piece of gear and good luck with everything!

#9 of 16 OFFLINE   BrentSP

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Posted May 10 2007 - 03:09 PM

Thanks Stephen! Now I'm looking at getting a new DVD player.....possibly the Marantz DV6400?

#10 of 16 OFFLINE   vm8444

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Posted May 15 2007 - 05:28 PM

really good move brent on your reciever purchase .. for a dvd I guess I would stay in the mid fi category ,, not sure of features and budget your looking at but your on your way enjoy brother peace vm

#11 of 16 OFFLINE   Stephen Hopkins

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Posted May 17 2007 - 06:20 AM

I'm not sure I would invest much in a new DVD player until you eventually upgrade your display. What are you currently using for DVD playback? Does your current TV have component video inputs?

#12 of 16 OFFLINE   BrentSP

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Posted May 17 2007 - 06:59 AM

Its a older 2001 Sony DVD. I hate it because ANY little spec of dirt or smudge skips worse than a school girl on a playground. As far as a new display I'm already measuring out my custom entertainment center to see what I can fit in but it will still be a while before I do anything. I don't think it has component video just RCA and Svideo I believe. I ended up buying a new old stock Marantz DV6500 from accessories4less. It was something like $250 and used go for $570 last year.

#13 of 16 OFFLINE   Stephen Hopkins

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Posted May 18 2007 - 03:31 AM

That's a top notch unit and will go well with your receiver and current display... and also perform well for any future display as well. I was going to suggest something a bit more modest but with HDMI ans Scaling for future compatibility, something like the Panasonic S52/S53, Samsung HD860/HD870, or Onkyo SP404. The main reason being that you're likely going to eventually upgrade to HD-DVD and/or BluRay... and because of that I would keep any investment in DVD to a minimum.

#14 of 16 OFFLINE   BrentSP

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Posted May 18 2007 - 04:20 AM

Well I have to say I'm sick to my stomach right now.

I got the SR8500 and DV6500 connected and overall I immediately was able to hear and see a difference without even setting up the channels. I then start to setup the volume levels with my DB reader and noticed that the Front Left main is blown on the receiver. Scratchy, noisey and sounds like a AM radio no matter what scource I used. I changed out the loudspeaker (I'm using Paradigm Ref all around.......these were the Studio 60s) and it still made the same noise only through that channel.

Well thats not even the bad news. What makes me sick to my stomach is that the Marantz doesn't fit into my custom built beast of a entertainment center......its to deep. I only need about 2 more inches to fit nicely....even an inch would work. In fact if I had all right angle connections I would be fine but the straight connections does not allow me to push back the receiver enough for the door to close. Right now I took off the glass that is on the cabinets door and its better but the door still hits the front of the receiver when closed.

(btw, I bought a new shed last week, made a cement ramp for my riding lawnmower and found out that the deck of the lawnmower doesn't fit through the door Posted Image )

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#15 of 16 OFFLINE   Stephen Hopkins

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Posted May 18 2007 - 04:47 AM

I feel your pain on the fit of the receiver... Pioneer Elite is the only brand I can use and fit components 2-wide on the bottom shelf of my stand (Elites are about 1/4" narrower than other brands). Since you have to send it back anyway because of the dead channel you'll likely want to exchange it for something else... perhaps something like the Onkyo SR804 ($579) or Marantz SR5001. Both are a step down in terms of shear sound quality and build but both would also likely do very well, fit in your unit, and be a leg up in terms of features. Unfortunately even the Marantz SR7500 has the same depth issue as the SR8500.

#16 of 16 OFFLINE   BrentSP

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Posted May 18 2007 - 04:58 AM


Man I would hate to go a step down at least compared to my Denon I'm replacing. That Denon 3802 is hard to beat in my opinion but it just needed a bit more power and format updates. Accessories4less is actually going to have Fedex come pick up the dead channel unit Monday and send me another 8500. I've been thinking I might just have to cut out a section of the inside back of the cabinet to make room Posted Image . I'll have to think this through over the weekend and see how I can gain a couple of inches without hacking up my entertainment center. I never thought about my cabinet being to shallow Posted Image