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Has Marantz fixed their X200 problems?


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#1 of 27 Kerry R

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Posted January 15 2002 - 01:47 PM

I've been thinking of purchasing a 5200 but am concerned with the audio drop out, the "popping", and the S-video sync issues. Has Marantz developed a fix for these problems?

#2 of 27 Salvador

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Posted January 15 2002 - 02:39 PM

haven't heard of any new official statements from marantz. Read the past posts on the x200 subject in this forum. THose threads should give you a lot of info.

#3 of 27 Andy Anderson

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Posted January 16 2002 - 04:13 AM

Kerry-

I'm an owner of the SR7000 (which I absolutely love), and suggested my friend go with the same. (He's been to several movie nights at my place, and knows my receiver well.) When we saw the 7200, we were both blown away with the features. I've never regretted any recommendation more than that one. My friend has had nothing but problems with his 7200. Between his problems, the reluctance of Marantz to own up to them, and reading the other problems on the forum (particular the ones about the 5200 actually catching fire in some cases), I would whole-heartedly recommed you stay away from the x200 line. Posted Image This is a shame, because they sound absolutely wonderful. It might be tough, but if you're dead set on Marantz, I'd sooner search out an old 5000, 6000, or 7000, if I were you.

I know that's not what you wanted to hear, but it's really not worth it. Trust me.

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#4 of 27 John Garcia

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Posted January 16 2002 - 05:08 AM

I have a 6200 and I am very happy with it. I bought it within days of the x200 line hitting the market, and have had the standard issues with it - audio mute circuit thing. I have yet to experience the "popping" or the video issue (I don't have any reason to use my receiver as a video switch). I would have to completely disagree with the previous statement on staying away from the x200 line.

HOWEVER, I also own an SR4000, which I have to say, feels, and maybe even SOUNDS, better than my 6200. At only 70wpc it seems as powerful if not more than the 6200 (105x6). I would have to agree that if you could find a 5000 or 7000 for a good price, that would be an excellent choice.

I was offered a 7000 for a very good price when I bought my 6200, because they wanted to get rid of them. In hindsight, I think I might have been happier had I gone with the 7000.
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#5 of 27 Jeff D.

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Posted January 16 2002 - 05:32 AM

Quote:
I know that's not what you wanted to hear, but it's really not worth it. Trust me.

This is just simply not true.

As a dealer for Marantz I will once again step up to the plate and defend them.

We have been selling the x200 line very well since its introduction. We've been pleased with the feature set as well as build and sound quality coming out of these machines.

They have been very popular and all models have been selling briskly. Probably the best seller is the 5200, with the 6200 and 7200 tied for second place.

With the exception of one unit, we have had no problems with the line, and we've probably sold around 75 of the units all told. We have had no returns and no complaints.

I have only read of two accounts of 5200 units catching fire - if you take the time to compare those 2 to the (probably) thousands of units out there that have been sold and have NOT caught fire, the problem seems irrelevant. Also, just because a unit catches fire doesn't mean we should instantly blame the unit. We have no idea the situation or the load it was presented with. This could very much be due to user misuse (even if it was unwittingly). Our store specializes in speaker repairs and we have seen some nasty things happen with speakers - if they are damaged they can present some dangerous loads to an amplifier.

Second, I am going to call your attention to another fact: yes, it appears Marantz had some problems with this line (though we did not experience them). The simple fact is: EVERY manufacturer has had problems at one time or another with their line. Doesn't matter whether its a Sony, a Denon, a Yamaha, or a Pioneer or anything - you'll always find QC issues at some point in their history. Doesn't mean the name should be trashed and avoided at all costs.

To sum up: the x200 line from Marantz carries on a tradition of providing excellent sound quality in an affordable and well-featured package. Audition the unit and try them out. If you have problems, then take it back. But more than likely you will not and you will not regret your purchase.

/Jeff

#6 of 27 Vince Chan

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Posted January 16 2002 - 05:55 AM

Quote:
Second, I am going to call your attention to another fact: yes, it appears Marantz had some problems with this line (though we did not experience them). The simple fact is: EVERY manufacturer has had problems at one time or another with their line. Doesn't matter whether its a Sony, a Denon, a Yamaha, or a Pioneer or anything - you'll always find QC issues at some point in their history. Doesn't mean the name should be trashed and avoided at all costs.


Jeff,
Yes I agree that every brand has had problems at one point or another with harware... BUT I can't recall a brand that
A) has problems across THEIR ENTIRE LINE (noise, dropouts, etc)
B) REFUSES to look into the problem much less give us a solution!
C) Releases a NEW LINE (8200, 9200)that has the some of the same problems as the old line!

I've had lots of respect for this brand, and I can say that their older equipment was fantastic in quality and performance, but I just can't recommend this current line of receivers. Maybe if enough people don't buy these receivers, Marantz will take notice and correct the problems in their next line.. otherwise what incentive will they have to do so?
I'm probably being too picky.. maybe these problems which are totally unacceptable to me are fine to less discriminating folk. Whatever suits you. But when I pay good money for a piece of equipment, it's not unreasonable to expect it to work the way it should.
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#7 of 27 Andy Anderson

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Posted January 16 2002 - 07:11 AM

Vince-

Absolutely. I have experimented with every x200 receiver in the product line, and across the board, the audio dropouts are 3-4 times longer than the 7000 I own, the 7000 my cousin owns, the 8000 my friend owns, and the 7000, 8000 and 9000 marked for clearance at my local dealer. Jeff is right about the popping, however--this seems to be intermittent and inconsistent in some cases. I work in the aircraft industry, very closely with our QC organization, and our vendors--I spend all day dealing with vendors and defective hardware. Marantz's behavior on these issues is absolutely unacceptable. Imagine how many people aren't complaining, when we have multiple threads and numerous HTF members complaining about the same problems with their respective receivers. This sounds like repeatable/reproducible bugs to me.
Don't get me wrong, I love Marantz's past line of receivers and separates, and think my SR7000 is the best sounding receiver (for the price) I've ever owned. I believe it's largely due to the 7000's notoriety that the 7200's are selling so well.

Audible pops, S-Video glitches, audio dropouts, even glaring typos in the hookup diagrams in the manual....I love Marantz, but, wait until these issues are resolved, or wait for their next generation. It's too much money to gamble like that. (My friend has returned 2 SR7200's, and is currently waiting on a 3rd. He's going to use the 3 strikes rule--if the 3rd receiver has the same problems, he's going the Denon route.)
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#8 of 27 Jagan Seshadri

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Posted January 16 2002 - 07:22 AM

Jeff,

Most people who buy audio gear are not enthusiasts and would be just as happy running Labtec speakers as they would be running B&W speakers.

It's great to hear that your sales have not been outweighed by returns. That's all good for you and other brick-and-mortar stores. But the FACT is that the x200 series is not up to snuff when it comes down to it.

But their next line will be fine, in all likelihood. So, there's no need to "defend" Marantz. They know they messed up, and they'll probably learn.

In the meantime, let's just be direct here. The x200 series sounds great, but it has little niggly issues that other similarly-priced receivers do not have.

I bought a 5200, so I know the issues here.

-JNS

#9 of 27 Cary P

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Posted January 16 2002 - 08:37 AM

I agree that it's not so much the fact that there are reported problems with the X200 line, but Marantz' persistent refusal to acknowledge and deal with the problems that is disturbing.

I used to own a SR7000 and loved it. I also recommended the SR7000 model to a friend and it has served them very well for nearly two years. I traded in my 7000 for the 7200 last August and have mixed feelings about it.

I believe I have one of the first x200 units that my dealer received, and have not experienced the popping and noise-floor issues that have been reported. The unit does have the audio dropout problem with digital inputs and the S-Video sync problem, however. This doesn't bother me too much, as I use the analog direct mode for critical music listening and only use the S-Video switching for my DirecTivo - where the sync problem only seems to occur very briefly during commercial transitions. But the SR7000 never exhibited these problems, and I agree that these issues could be a big deal for some people. Considering the great sound of the unit and the fact that it offers a lot of features for the money, I decided to keep mine for the time being.

I'm using the 7200 as a pre/pro, so I cannot comment on the performance of the amps in the receiver. But you can bet I was very disturbed when I read the Sound and Vision review stating that the 7200 only puts out 29 w/channel and has very high noise levels! I can understand why a lot of people were upset after reading this review, but what is most surprising is that there was never an official response or rebuttal from Marantz.

It's as if Marantz figures that most of their customers are idiots and will not care about the reported performance issues/problems with these units. This is a good example of how poor customer service/public relations can alienate a company's most loyal customers. I'm not sure what is going on with Marantz these days, but maybe their recent split from Philips has led to the quality control/customer service problems we have experienced.

I have another friend who recently asked me to recommend a home theater receiver for $500 - $600. I was all set to recommend the SR5200, but given all of the reported problems with Marantz, I told him to get the Integra 5.2 instead. He is very happy with the unit, although I sometimes wonder if he would have been better off with the Marantz. But until the reported QC problems are sorted out, I can't really recommend Marantz' receivers to my friends anymore.

As for myself, I am still hoping that these problems will be resolved with Marantz' future line of products. I really like the sound, look, feel and ergonomics of the Marantz line. I am hoping that they will release an upgraded AV9000 pre/pro with all of the latest features in the SR9200 receiver before summer, so I can trade-up from my 7200 (my dealer has a 1 year upgrade policy). I also have very high hopes for the Marantz SA-8260 multi-channel SACD player announced at CES. So I am not giving up on Marantz completely, just a little alienated by the recent lack of response to their customers' concerns.

Cary

#10 of 27 Salvador

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Posted January 16 2002 - 08:39 AM

the fact is, if purchase an x200 Marantz receiver you are assuming the risk and rolling the dice. For me, this is unacceptable with any product and especially receivers. I went through hell with Klipsch and their promedia line. Four straight duds from different sources and these idiots at Klipsch still think its a 1/1000 problem. Sad thing is that in the Klipsch forum, there are these ningcampoops who feel like they are helping people when they tell them to return the busted promedia set and get another one. Their advice should be RETURN the sucker and get a refund. At least wait until they fix their problems then purchase the infernal promedia if you really want it.

It's a good thing that people in this forum are generally smart consumers. I was also entranced by the specs and attractive price of the 6200. In the end i didn't want to take the risk and i went for a much more expensive 3802. Works great and i haven't really encountered a lot of people having persistent problems like those x200 people.

#11 of 27 Vishwa Somayaji

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Posted January 16 2002 - 09:56 AM

I generally do not get into arguments about the superiority of one over the other and also I had great admiration for Marantz. I do own Marantz equipment. However, 5200 catching fire is really a bad situation

quote:
-------------------
I have only read of two accounts of 5200 units catching fire - if you take the time to compare those 2 to the (probably) thousands of units out there that have been sold and have NOT caught fire, the problem seems irrelevant. Also, just because a unit catches fire doesn't mean we should instantly blame the unit. We have no idea the situation or the load it was presented with. This could very much be due to user misuse (even if it was unwittingly). Our store specializes in speaker repairs and we have seen some nasty things happen with speakers - if they are damaged they can present some dangerous loads to an amplifier.
---------------

That is two too many.

#12 of 27 Andy Anderson

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Posted January 16 2002 - 10:06 AM

I've read two accounts of 5200 fires as well, over at AVS Forum or Home Theater Spot. (Can't remember which--search those forums if you like) One poor guy it happened to twice in a row! One caught fire, he returned it, in the meantime used his old recever with no problems, got the replacement 5200, and the same thing happened! He went with another brand after that.

I really don't want to sound like I'm Marantz-bashing here, (although some may see it that way) I think Cary P summed up my feelings the best.
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#13 of 27 Patrick Senez

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Posted January 16 2002 - 12:08 PM

On my side, I did got an answer from Marantz about the various problems. Their distributor in Canada is Lenbrook and you can look at what they had to say here:

http://www.hometheat....threadid=37012

The Marantz SR5200 is my first AV receiver and I really like the sound and look of it. The problems are unacceptable and I'm suppose to change it for a Yamaha (don't know which model yet) before the end of the month.

Because of the problems, I cannot recommend this receiver...

#14 of 27 Jeff D.

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Posted January 16 2002 - 05:16 PM

I am not about to get into a pissing contest AGAIN about this subject.

I am going to state this again since people don't seem to get it.

Out of probably around 75 receivers in this line that we have sold, only one has had a problem. We have not had any returns or complaints.

Also, I will point out we are a higher-end specialty audio shop (independently owned). We are NOT a big-box store and our customers are NOT happy with Labtec speakers...so these are not "J6P" type people. These are people concerned with performance, reliability and features. So that argument does not wash.

Quote:
A) has problems across THEIR ENTIRE LINE (noise, dropouts, etc)

There have been some with problems, others without. Not EVERY product in the line suffers from it. Also, the noise issue is relative - when I crank up the receiver to its max volume and put my ear to the speaker - yes, I can hear noise. But guess what? I hear the same noise when using a high-end pre/pro/power amp combination. So it is not exclusive to this line or to any product. I find it ridiculous that this becomes a criteria for performance - no noise when its cranked with your ears to the speakers - give me a break.

Also, I will point out that some have complained of noise being audible at normal listening levels at normal distances. That is a fault and is unacceptable - I agree. But the samples I have heard have not had this problem (barring the one unit I mentioned).

Quote:
B) REFUSES to look into the problem much less give us a solution!

Depends on who you talk to. Some have reported no success, others have had success - one poster on one of these forums (I get them all confused) has had decent conversations with someone who has reported the problem to Marantz Japan.

Quote:
C) Releases a NEW LINE (8200, 9200)that has the some of the same problems as the old line!

My extensive testing of the new line showed none of the traits of the lower series. Sound quality was in a different league and I noted no problems.

Look guys, the problem is this. Everyone blabs on and on about what a great resource forums like HTF are - but they are becoming less and less so with people who are hot-headed about their opinions and post inaccurate information. 20 people have a niggly complaint about a receiver and they trash the line. Doesn't mean the product is trash. The Marantz receivers sound a hell of a lot better than their competing product. Our customers have recognized that. No, maybe the noise floor is not as low as it could be, but who cares? The sound is damn good. It's a compromise that is made.

Whatever the problems, the Marantz line is still respectable and should be considered. Let's be fair here. "Stay away at all costs" comments are ignorant of the truth. Test them out for yourself. If you have problems with your unit, then maybe you need to look elsewhere. Or maybe you'll get a good unit and get some kick-ass Marantz sound at a good price.

Just be rational and not so hot-headed.

/Jeff

#15 of 27 Nick EV

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Posted January 16 2002 - 06:26 PM

This is the fourth x200 Marantz I have gone through and I am finally happy with it. I originally bought a SR5200 due to sound vs. features vs. price. It had the dreaded background noise problem when cranked up and the pop noise in-between tracks of CDs and DVDs. Also the unit lacked power for my tastes so I traded up for a SR7200 (At the time I was unaware of any problems this series was having).

The SR7200 was much better except for the very loud popping noise coming through the speakers when either an input source was changed or a CD/DVD track changes occurred (digital inputs only). I exchanged it for another SR7200 that exhibited the same problem but not as bad. The popping noise would get louder the longer the time in-between track changes on CD’s or DVD’s. I contacted the Australian distributor of Marantz products and they admitted there were units exhibiting these problems and they had a fix for the popping noise. The flaw was in the muting circuiting causing either a popping noise or muting the source material for too long. I was sent another replacement that had been modified by Marantz Australia and now I am satisfied. There is a very minute clicking noise when track changes occurs on DVD’s and CD’s or when the volume is set to minium i.e. –75db, but unless I really listen for it is difficult to notice.

All the SR7200 I have had in my possession have not exhibited any noticeable background noise contrary to the SR5200. Yes you can hear some white noise on analogue inputs only when it is cranked above +10db (with no source material playing), which is almost the limit of the receiver. Digital inputs are dead quite no matter what volume setting. As for power levels, well I very rarely run the system above –10db in Dolby Digital or –15db in DTS. In stereo mode at 0 db it’s damn loud and still sounds very clean and clear. Again in 6channel stereo –10db is usually the limit as it starts to get above comfortable listening levels. (I run fairly efficient 6-ohm speakers)

While I have had many hassles with this model range I have stuck to it since the sound quality, price and feature is very hard to match compared to other brands in my opinion. I was going to change to a Yamaha RX-V1200 but when run side by side to the SR7200 in the store the music quality of the Marantz was way better for MY TASTE and I listen to a lot of music. In HT the yammie may have had a slight edge but with a lot a vocal content it seemed hasher than the SR7200. The SR7200 really seems to shine in DTS mode.

The only real issues I have now is it will not automatically go into 6.1 mode when using Dolby Digital EX or DTS ES software. It also does not have the full Prologic II setups but I use 6channel stereo for music and rarely watch anything else but DVDs so it’s less to play around with. Also it lacks DTS ES Discrete but due to limited DTS software for Region 4 again not a real problem.

If you have a good support network for the product and are prepared to maybe go backwards and forwards between the store and your home then go for it, otherwise look for something else.

#16 of 27 ChrisAG

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Posted January 17 2002 - 02:09 AM

I have experienced the EXACT same problems as Nick, above, except that I sea-sawed between the 5200 and 6200.

I purchased my first 6200 as soon as the line was available in September, and it was audibly flawless (sweet in Source Direct). It had the wavy line S-video issue, which was "repaired," but I got sick of the vertical hold going out of sync whenever there was a bright flash on DVD or Satellite (and if you watch TLC, A&E, Discovery, etc., you know that commercials and show previews on these channels contain a lot of bright flashes). Those of you who watch these channels via cable or composite won't notice the problem, as the video issue is only present when you use the Marantz's S-video switching.

So, in November I exchanged it for a second 6200. This one had the same video sync issue, plus a VERY LOUD popping sound when changing sources/volume. It was so loud I was affraid it would blow a tweeter (I only hope my speakers escaped unscathed, after a few hours of use). This one went back.

I decided to try a different brand at this point, so I took an Onkyo 797 home for a week. This thing is awesome, with more power than the Marantz and a far more powerful menu system, due to THX Select certification. Unfortunately, it did not sound as good as the Marantz in stereo mode, so I took it back.

and I tried a 5200 this time. To my frustration, the popping sound was there, though it was only half as bad as the second 6200, though loud enough to be concerned about. Plus, the unit sounded a bit harsh when cranked to high volume compared to the 6200. Of course, I returned this one as well.

It is interesting that aside from the repairable S-video wavy line issue, the earlier units don't seem to suffer from the popping noise. When getting the 5200 I asked the dealer to give me one with the highest serial number.

Right now I have returned to my old Yamaha RX-V390 Pro-Logic while I wait for Marantz to sort out the problems. I may revisit the brand in March, because I do like the sound in stereo, which is most important to me.

#17 of 27 Kerry R

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Posted January 17 2002 - 02:22 AM

I have read suggestions of waiting till Marantz comes out with a new line and ChrisAG mentioned waiting till March to try Marantz again. Does anyone know when a new line is due from Marantz?

ChrisAG,
Why March? Is that when Marantz will have a new product line or are you anticipating that by March Marantz may have fixed these issues?

#18 of 27 Michael Mohrmann

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Posted January 17 2002 - 03:11 AM

"I am hoping that they will release an upgraded AV9000 pre/pro with all of the latest features in the SR9200 receiver before summer..."

You may be waiting for quite some time. I emailed Marantz with that very question and received a response back at the beginning of this week. Although they could not tell me exactly what they were going to do, the rep did indicate that Marantz is in the "discussion" stage at this time about a possible future successor to the AV-9000. So, it is not even in their plans at the moment.

It is possible that Marantz may not make any more A/V processors in the future, as it may not be profitable for them. They have already discontinued their top-of-the-line MA-700 monoblock with no replacement being planned, so Marantz may be moving away from the concept of separates, with the notable exception of the MA-6100 monoblocks.

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#19 of 27 ChrisAG

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Posted January 17 2002 - 04:10 AM

Why March? I would hope that most of the problems will be fixed by then, but who knows?

As for a brand-new line, they won't be out till next September at least, assuming a year-long wait between lines. The previous generation was out for 18 months before the x200 series, but manufacturers seem to be updating their products a little quicker these days due to competition.

#20 of 27 Chris Moffitt

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Posted January 17 2002 - 04:11 AM

I want to jump in with my opinion. I have had nothing but great service from Marantz. I bought a 5200, that exhibited the "popping" sounds. I got in touch with the Marantz people through their web site and they quickly arranged a repair. I received a call tag, sent it in and got it back in about 1 week ~ over the Christmas holiday.

When I got it back it was fixed perfectly. I've been using it steadily for 3 weeks or so now and have been very very pleased.

I wish I hadn't had the issues, but Marantz did fine by me in my book. For $500US the price performance can't be beat.

To be honest, if I knew about the problems in advance, I probably would've avoided it, but now that it works for me, I can't imagine anything else.


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