B&K 50 or Integra DTC-9.4?

Discussion in 'AV Receivers' started by BrianKR, Jul 27, 2003.

  1. BrianKR

    BrianKR Second Unit

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    Which of these Integra DTC-9.4 or B&K Reference 50 will offer more bang for the buck? The B&K is $500 more from where I would be purchasing it from.

    I am also considering an Anthem 20 but that isn't available from the same dealer and it would cost a good deal more than the other 2.

    I have B&W Nautilus speakers, a Sherbourn amp ( should be here tomorrow or Tuesday[​IMG] ) and I will be using this setup 90%HT - 10%Music but in time this might change. My wife and kids are starting to use the room now and they prefer music to video.
     
  2. Kevin C Brown

    Kevin C Brown Producer

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    I have looked at both, but I ended up with a Lexicon MC-8.

    But here's some differences I saw:

    B&K has been doing pre/pros for a long time, and they have the tried-and-true Motorola processing solution. The Integra is a relatively new unit, and they have never done a pre/pro before (except if you count Integra Research, which is a different division within Onkyo). The Integra uses a Fujitsu processor which nobody knows much about. But the Integra has Wolfson DACs, which is a surprise at this price point (i.e., they are very good DACs). I don't know what the B&K has. I believe that the B&K is made in the US. The Integra isn't, if that matters to you. If you're considering the Integra, personally, I'd wait about 6 months for some reviews and user reports to show up, to make sure there's no problems with it. The B&K has been out over a year now, and any problems with it have most likely already been worked out. They are both quite good looking units! [​IMG]
     
  3. BrianKR

    BrianKR Second Unit

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    I am finding out from searching for info the B&K has more of the features I am looking for in a processor over the Integra 9.4. I read that the Integra isn't upgradeable, that is a big disadvantage to me. The Integra does have some nice features not found on the B&K, and from what I've read sonically they are both about equal, but I am looking for longevity.

    I am still going to check it out for myself but I was hoping to hear input from some that have experience with either of the 2 directly. I am going to my local dealer tomorrow to see if I can talk them into letting me take a Anthem AV20 home for a couple days.

    Are there any other processors in this price range I should check out?
     
  4. george king

    george king Supporting Actor

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    in this range, you might want to check out the new Rotel RSP 1098.

    Hope this helps.
     
  5. BrianKR

    BrianKR Second Unit

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    Thx, I will check into the Rotel.
     
  6. Kevin C Brown

    Kevin C Brown Producer

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    Are you sure that the Integra isn't upgradeable? I did see an RS-232 port on the back of it.

    B&K vs Rotel? Personally, I'd still take the B&K. [​IMG]
     
  7. Donnie Eldridge

    Donnie Eldridge Supporting Actor

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  8. BrianKR

    BrianKR Second Unit

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    The RS-232 port is for Net Tune: A built-in Ethernet port for Net-Tune allows you to receive streaming audio by connecting to Internet radio, PCs, and the NAS-2.3 hard-drive music server.

    I haven't found "any" info on the DTC-9.4 being upgradeable. The few people I have talked to that own the unit told me it isn't. They said they confirmed it by contacting Integra directly.
     
  9. Kevin C Brown

    Kevin C Brown Producer

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    That's a bummer. Hopefully they get the Fujitsu's code correct in the 1st shot... (Now how likely would that be? [​IMG] )
     
  10. Jim_P

    Jim_P Stunt Coordinator

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    I'm a new owner of a B&K Ref 50.

    I like it quite a bit, but that is not to say that others manufacturers don't have good products also.

    Personally, I think that when properly set up, several of these pre/pros within their price point, will for all intents and purposes sound very good. The "setting up" is the killer. What makes these units as good as they are is their ability to optimize your speakers, environment,etc. The B&K for instance has room equalization that has several presets as well as a variable setting which gives you 4 independant variables(lots of possible combinations). It may take several days to get the settings right(it did me). Once I got the settings correct,I've been very pleased how good it sounds. My point is that unless you just get lucky, you may not be able to get optimize the system within the review period and therefore not know how good any of these systems will sound.

    I hope you do well in your search for the "right" prepro.

    Happy listening.

    Jim
     
  11. Mike Mundt

    Mike Mundt Stunt Coordinator

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    anthem avm20, has about every processing feature available, firewire input upgradable for later DVD-A SACD use (not sure if the other have it or not). I also find the anthem to give you the true playback sound of your original source material, while the B&K seems to color the sound a little. Some people like that some dont, but listen to the Anthem also, its worth taking into consideration. Also the anthem has one numerous awards for sound, go to their website to see the list of award on the avm20. http://www.anthemav.com
     
  12. BrianKR

    BrianKR Second Unit

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    I feel I have more than came to the conclusion the B&K 50 is worth the additional $500+ over the Integra DTC-9.4. It's upgradable and offers more features that I would use.

    The best price I found on the Anthem AV20 places it $600+ over the best price I have found on the B&K50. I haven't researched the AV20 enough to draw any conclusions on whether or not it's worth the additional money over the B&K50. Anthem has updates more readily availble over B&K but the 50 is a much newer unit over the Anthem. I cant do an in home demo of either unit. The local dealer only has one AV20 and he wont part with it (the next closest Anthem dealer is 40 miles away).

    I am going out tonight to listen to both of them. This wont do either of them justice since it wont be at the same dealer or same equipment matched up with them. It's all I can do though to help with my decision. I want to pick up a processor within the next couple weeks.

    I would really like to pull the trigger on one ASAP but this is a big purchase and I am doing my best to be patient. [​IMG]
     
  13. Jim_P

    Jim_P Stunt Coordinator

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    Brian:

    Getting an informative audition in anything other than your own system is as tough as reading an insurance policy and getting anything out of it. lol

    My experience was that both the Anthem and the Ref 50 that I auditioned were not set up right. Ref 50 was at a Tweeter 100 miles from home. The dialog sound as if someone was talking through a tube. The Anthem was at a mom and pop shop 50 miles from home. Lacked clarity.

    As you have found, the Ref 50 can be had for less than the Anthem. I would recommend that you purchase from an authorized dealer, though.
     
  14. Chas_T

    Chas_T Supporting Actor

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  15. BrianKR

    BrianKR Second Unit

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    I couldn't agree with you more Jim. I found a way to demo a B&K in my home and I am working on a way to do the same with an Anthem.

    I went out yesterday and I got to play with the Anthem AV20, B&K50, Integra DTC 9.4 and a TGIII.
    I had a blast!

    The salesperson confirmed the Integra is definitely "not" upgradable for those that have any interest in this unit. I confirmed that this morning by calling Integra myself.
     
  16. Jerry Klawiter

    Jerry Klawiter Screenwriter

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    If there was a need to software upgrade the Integra, it can be done in the same manner as a B&K product, switch out the prom that the software resides. I'm sure this would only be done if some major flaws had been discovered. The Integra is not marketed as an upgradeable processor, nonetheless when I home audition it just a week + ago, I really found no faults in the performance & that remote is nearly identical to the pronto 2000. The Net-Tunes for some may be a valuable plus. It most definitely is feature packed at a competitive street price, the DTC 9.4 has allot going for it.
     
  17. BrianKR

    BrianKR Second Unit

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    No argument here Jerry.
    I was able to listen to the DTC-9.4 and went over its features yesterday. It has "fantastic" sound and more features than most people will ever use.

    Are you going to purchase a DTC-9.4?
     
  18. NickSP

    NickSP Supporting Actor

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    Brian or jerry, what is the street price for the Integra prepro? Thx.
     
  19. BrianKR

    BrianKR Second Unit

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    You can find it for under $1,500 if you shop around and for that price I don't think there is a prepro out there that can best it. It really has "incredible" sound. I know I am going to kick myself down the road for not saving money and purchasing it.

    I am just one of those guys that has to test the limits of my bank account and my WAF! Both are reaching their limits! [​IMG]
     
  20. Mike Mundt

    Mike Mundt Stunt Coordinator

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    I'm just curious what was the price found on the B&K. Tweeter near me sells them for around $3,000. The anthem avm20 is priced in the store i went to for $2890.
     

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