About To Pull Trigger On 3802, Is It Worth It?

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by JustinP, Aug 6, 2002.

  1. JustinP

    JustinP Stunt Coordinator

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    I'm about to purchase a Denon 3802 off 6ave.com to compliment my newly acquired Paradigm Studio 60's. I absolutely LOVE these speakers, but since the second I hooked them up, I suspected my old receiver wouldn't be enough to power them. I'm going to be upgrading from a Yamaha RXV-595 (70W x 5). My question is: Will upgrading from the old Yamaha to the 3802 provide a noticeable and worthwhile difference for both music and home theater (both in two channel listening since I only have the two speakers)?
     
  2. Chu Gai

    Chu Gai Lead Actor

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    The sensitivity of the Studio 60's in a room is about 90 dB if you're sitting 1 meter away. Since sensitivity is subject to the inverse square law (if you double the distance you need 4x as much power for things to stay roughly the same...i.e 6 dB more). Let's say you're sitting 3 meters away instead of 1 meter, the sensitivity then is effectively decreased by about 9.5 dB...let's call it 10. This means if you put 1 watt of power into your speakers you'll get 80 dB of sound.

    Before we consider music, let's put some of this dB into somesort of perspective.

    0 the quietest sound you can hear
    30 whisper, quiet library
    60 normal conversation, sewing machine, typewriter
    90 lawnmower, shop tools, truck traffic, 8 hours per day is the maximum exposure (protects 90% of people)
    100 chainsaw, pneumatic drill, snowmobile; 2 hours per day is the maximum exposure without protection
    115 sandblasting, loud rock concert, auto horn; 15 minutes per day is the maximum exposure without protection.
    140 gun muzzle blast, jet


    OK now let's look at listening to music and say you're the kind of guy, despite knowledge of the above likes to crank it up for periods of time and listen to music at 95 dB (keep in mind, if you say I'm used to listening at those levels all the time, then I'm quite certain the reason you're used to it is because your hearing has been permanently damaged...no medicine, no nothing is going to get it back...ask Peter Townsend or better, write it down so he can read it instead). Given your speakers above and that hypothetical listening distance of 3 meters, for you to listen to 95 dB consistently, your receiver will need to be able to produce 32 watts of clean power consistently. The Denon can do 110 watts/channel, the Yamaha 70. I'm assuming both units have actually been measured and meet their stated claims. So is there a difference strictly in power between the two units? Sure, 40 watts...is it big...not in my opinion. If you listen at closer distances than I used for illustration your power requirements will be less.
    It is never a bad thing to have more power than you need as it is clipping that is both harsh to our ears and potentially damaging to things like tweeters. Your Yamaha is discontinued and I suspect that the Denon will go that way shortly. Now that's not a bad price on the Denon and certainly the feature set on the Denon is different from your Yamaha. Is it important to you? That's for you to decide.
    I'm not going to try and make up your mind for you. Consider what I've written above and maybe it'll help you to arrive at an informed decision.
     
  3. David Berry

    David Berry Stunt Coordinator

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    Justin,

    I have both the Studio 60v2 and the 3802. I initially had a Pioneer 810S receiver hooked up into them. When I bought the Denon 3802, I noticed (and my wife more importantly) noticed and improvement to the sound quality. How loud it played was not that important to me as I listen at modest levels, but the quality of sound is. Have a look at Denon's website as they have the full specifications there and an owner's manual.
    It was worth the money to me, and I bought it for $1650 Cdn. taxes included.

    David
     
  4. Michael Mathius

    Michael Mathius Supporting Actor

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    I would snatch one in a heart beat if I did not already have one.[​IMG] With the build quality, sound and power for that price why wouldn't you?
    HT peer presure.[​IMG] [​IMG]
     
  5. Yogi

    Yogi Screenwriter

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  6. peter a

    peter a Stunt Coordinator

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    the 3802 provides a dimension of clarity for that price that you would be hard-pressed to find in other receivers at that price point. sure.. you could go separates and get a smaller HK unit or even a smaller denon... but, you're getting so much more clarity in the sound from that 3802 than you would from other models 1000 dollars more expensive. if you can't tell, i own one, love it- and if it came in a female human version, i'd propose.

    p
     
  7. NickSP

    NickSP Supporting Actor

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    Great post Chu, kind of puts this whole power thing in perspective.
     
  8. JustinP

    JustinP Stunt Coordinator

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    Yeah, I'm pretty sure I'm going to place the order Friday. Chu's post was very well informed and crafted, and much appreciated. However, like a few others said, I'm not looking as much for db gain as a result of the upgrade, but rather better clarity and separation of instruments, vocals, gunshots, etc. Being that I'm going to have to share the bedroom the 60's are going in (3k a month for a 3 bedroom apartment = 2 people per room) I'm very doubtfuly I'll be able to push the speakers to levels that could damage my hearing (roommates probably won't appreciate my hobby as much as I do). If anyone else has a testimonial about the improvement their 3802 brought to their system, I'd love to hear it. I'll be sure to post my observations once I can wrench myself away from the chair after I get mine.

    Thanks,

    Justin
     
  9. Chu Gai

    Chu Gai Lead Actor

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    no similar deals out there in california, huh?
     
  10. Doug Brewster

    Doug Brewster Second Unit

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    If you are interested in music, I recommend the Harman Kardon avr520. It will really make a difference and it can actually be bought for a little less @ jandrworld.com
    It has more power available (don't let the ratings fool you) than the Denon or Yamaha. It only has amps for 4 channels but will support up to 8 channels. You can audition it at Circuit City, but buy it at jandr and you'd save alot of money. They are an authorized dealer. The Denon is a great receiver, but not as good for music or as powerful (again, don't let the specs fool you). It will make music a more enjoyable event and does a great job on home theater as well. Research the comments on the avr520 in these forums. It is frequently compared with the Denon and Yamaha's and usually preferred.

    Just an idea.

    Love my 520
     

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