Budget DD Receivers - Pioneer or Kenwood?

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by Kyle W, Jan 15, 2002.

  1. Kyle W

    Kyle W Extra

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    The folks have asked me to bring them into the DD age, on a budget. They already have competent speakers from their current DPL setup so all they need is a DD/DTS/DPL receiver.
    Any opinions on the Kenwood VR-507 vs. the Pioneer VSX-D509S (the latter costing $100 less)?
    I'm sold on the Kenwood's for "bang for your buck" performance, having the VR-407 in my own setup. The VR-507 is the replacement model and adds DPLII but costs $299 at the local CC. Costco has the similarly featured Pioneer VSX-D509S with DPL only for $199. Is DPLII worth $100? That's the only feature difference I can see that's of any importance.
    Any thoughts on the performance of Pioneers? Is the Pioneer's 100W per channel comparable to the Kenwood's?
    Thanks in advance!
    Kyle
    Austin, TX[​IMG]
     
  2. John Garcia

    John Garcia Executive Producer

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    If they are going to be watching VHS movies, then DPL-II is probably worth it. I'm not a big fan of PL-II, but it definitely sounds better than DPL for movies.

    I can't comment on those receivers because they wouldn't be in my personal choices. Consider a Denon 1802 (or even a 1602), Marantz SR4200, Onkyo 494 for about that price or a little more, it'll be worth it in the long run.
     
  3. Albert M

    Albert M Stunt Coordinator

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    Don't forget SRS Circle Surround. I love DPL2 and CS. Not all dvds have a 5.1 on them. I would get the Kenwood.
    The Kenwood can compete with the above receivers.
     
  4. RobY

    RobY Auditioning

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    The Pioneer also doesn't have S-Video. The Kenwood does. I don't know if that makes a difference to you or your parents.
     
  5. Carl Johnson

    Carl Johnson Cinematographer

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    I would get the Kenwood. It costs a bit more, but it has more features and my Kenwood receiver has been flawless for 5 years now so the line will be at the top of my list when it comes time to upgrade.
     
  6. Chad Anson

    Chad Anson Second Unit

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    I have the $199 Pioneer from Costco to run the modest setup in our family room. I like it - it sounds decent, has a good learning remote, and does have S-VIDEO switching. It doesn't sound as good as say the Denon I have in the "main" system, but I've been very pleased. I doubt that the Kenwood is worth $100 more. Another thing to consider is that Costco has an outstanding return policy. If your receiver breaks during (and sometimes after) the warranty period, bring it back and they'll refund your money. Just make sure you save your receipt and box.
     
  7. Jason Wolters

    Jason Wolters Stunt Coordinator

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    I bought the Kenwood VR507 at mjshow.com . It was $235.00. Dolby Pro Logic II is awesome. I am glad I didn't settle for a receiver without it. I would hate to hear Pro Logic again. There is no decision to be made here. Get the Kenwood, now.
     
  8. Kyle W

    Kyle W Extra

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    Thanks for everyone's input. I went and looked at the Pioneer, and was actually pretty impressed by what I saw. Full S-video switching, multiple digital inputs, nice remote, and screw-down speaker outputs for the mains and center. They also have additional $20-off coupon for it, so it'll be hard to justify not getting it. If it really underperforms I can always take it back.

    If I were buying for me, I'd go with the Kenwood all the way, but this is for people who, besides toggling through the input modes, aren't going to touch the surround field options or notice that the DPL sounds the same as their old receiver's.

    Thanks for the feedback, now I'm drooling over the DPLII and CS on the VR507 for myself! Although the Onkyo 494 looks great too.

    Kyle
     
  9. Jason Wolters

    Jason Wolters Stunt Coordinator

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    Probably 95% of my HT theater expereince is analog. By this I mean that most of the time my receiver is playing good old analog cable TV. This makes Dolby Pro Logic II extremely valuable. I would never buy a receiver without it.
     

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