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best DTS receiver for around $500? (1 Viewer)

Sean Patrick

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Apr 22, 1999
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I'm looking to upgrade from my Dolby Digital HK AVR75 receiver...very reluctantly too, since it's never let me down and i love the way it sounds. I'd really like to take advantage of DVD-A, and my current receiver just doesn't have the capabilities.

Unfortunately, price is a major factor. I'd PREFER to get a receiver with 6.1 inputs for DVD-A, DTS EX and DD EX capabilities, and multiple optical inputs. I assume for $500 this can't be done.

Is there anything is this price range that fits most of the requirements? I've been happily using my AVR75 for 3+ years, so if it weren't for the DVD-A failure of my player, i'd probably be keeping it. But i'm years out of the loop when it comes to receivers, plus i'm highly doubtful my HK AVR75 could be outgunned audio-wise with dvd's (even though it's "only" dolby digital, i think it sounds incredible) by an "upgraded" receiver in this price range.

any input would be helpful

sean
 

Rich Malloy

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Sean, you may be surprised by the many receivers in this price-range that have many of the capabilities you need.

First up, the Outlaw 1050. Decodes DTS, DD-5.1/DD-6.1, and Pro-Logic. Has 6.1 inputs. Has pre-outs for every channel if you want to add extra amplification. Has excellent bass-management capabilities, including the ability to set the crossover at various frequencies from 60hz up to 200hz. Sounds great on 2-channel music.

Possible drawback: only one digital coax input and two optical inputs. And if you like extensive DSP modes, look elsewhere.

$499.
 

Sean Patrick

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rich - that receiver sounds great! i actually only need 2 optical inputs, and in reality if i found the perfect receiver that only had one optical input i'd be okay because i'm using a digital audio switcher in my current setup (which works pretty good...most of the time).

john - i'm going to give those receivers a look. thanks.
 

Sean Patrick

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one quick question. since i really like my current receiver, is it feasible (or price effective) to just buy a preamp for my current receiver's 6-channel pre-inputs, this way getting DVD-A with my HK AVR75?
 

chung_sotheby

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I think that along with the Outlaw, you should seriously consider the Denon 2802. Has all the sound formats, and pure power of 80 watts/channel. Can be had for around $500 if you look around. As for using your receiver for its amp, I would have to advise you not to dothis. While your receiver may be fine, often times the place where manufacturers skimp the most, other than the remote, is in the amp section. Using an external amp for your receiver will positively affect your system much more than getting a new preamp section and using the same amps in your current receiver.
 

Sebastien David

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also take a look at discontinued models, you should still find them in stores new at GREAT prices.

depending on several factors, you might be able to get a 2801 or even maybe a 3801 for around that price. with full warranty. and all of what you're looking for. we are at a point where new receivers mostly offer dolby prologic II, which is nice, but for example, the 3801 offers DTS Neo 6, which is IMO very similar to Prologic II is actual results.

I own the 3801 (just got one) and let me tell you, it's a great piece of equipment, its only drawbacks being the lack of an adjustable crossover and ease of use/intuitiveness.

to save even more money, look at the used market.
a 3801 could be found for about $500 methinks on ebay or similar sites, or even maybe locally.

-Seb
 

Alf S

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Alfer
Don't forget about the newest kid on the block that has many great features for around $300.

The Pioneer VSX-D811S

Great receiver for the price.

Alfer
 

MikeyWeitz

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I am with Alf S. I am replacing my HK Avr45 w/ the VSX-D811S as soon as I have the $$$. DD,DTS,ex,es 6.1 component switching 3 optical inputs is EXACTLY what I need and for $325 or so, it is PERFECT!
 

LaMarcus

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I was seriously considering buying that receiver, until I read some reviews about it having some seriously weak bass output. I want to upgrade to a new receiver but I want it to be the last receiver for a long time. So, I want upgrade capability and all the current formats. Or at least upgrade cap. and 6.1ES, with some superb sound. I'm starting to lean toward the Denon 2801. But If the 811s could really compete with it, then hands down I'd get the 811s.
 

MaxMenon

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Get a Denon AVR-2802 (~$500) ... and get a HK PA-5800 5 channel PowerAmp ($300 used) ... plug the preout from the Denon to the HK and enjoy.

The HK is rated at 85w/ch ... but wait ! ... its a solid amp with HUGE reserves (how about 70 AMPS !!) ... even made the Denon 5800 receiver sound puny compared to it !

The Denon AVR-2802 does DLPII !

max
 

LinChen

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LaMarcus, Could you please let me know where I can find those reviews that suggest the Pioneer D811S has weak bass output? Should be interesting to read. I have had the 811s for a momth or so a and I don't thinkits bass output is weak.


Lin
 

LaMarcus

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When I get to work tonight I'll find those reviews, but you'll see them tomorrow because I work third shift.
 

ThomasL

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I also have the 811S and have not noticed any problems with bass output but I have a powered subwoofer. Of course, one can also up the bass via the bass setting. I believe there is also an LFE setting but I've simply left that at the default since the manual doesn't really state exactly what it does.

cheers,


--tom
 

Rich Malloy

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Now, guys, before this thread is thoroughly hijacked, do you consider the Pioneer 811 to be the best DTS receiver for $500 (or less)?
I'm not criticizing it - haven't even heard it - but I'd be shocked if it compares to some of the other receivers being discussed here.
So, either make your case or start a new thread, you interlopers! :)
 

Paul_Fisher

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I bought my marantz 5200 for $420 online which I think is better than the Pioneer. The only Pioneer receivers I would ever buy would the the Elites. Just my .02
 
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You may be able to find excellent deals on some used receivers in the Hardware For Sale / Trade forum.



I know where you can find a used Denon AVR-3300 in mint condition that is just in your price range.
 

Jeff_Fitz

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Jun 2, 2002
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Sean:
CheapHomeTheater.com has an ongoing contest for best receiver with an MSRP under $500. Their recent "King of the Hill" was the Onkyo TX-DS595 until it was unseated by the Denon AVR-1802 in January '02.
They just reviewed the Onkyo TX-SR600, but stayed with the Denon as the best under $500 receiver.
They have pretty detailed reviews of each of the receivers they have looked at.
I hope that helps,
Jeff
 

ThomasL

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Mar 13, 2001
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I would say if you want 6.1 that the 811S compares favorably to the Onkyo SR600 or the Yamaha that is priced in the same range. I think the next step up is to the Denon 2802 and the $700 range. I've concluded that once you get into the
 

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