Can I learn anything from a brand?

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by Scott_AH, Oct 1, 2002.

  1. Scott_AH

    Scott_AH Stunt Coordinator

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    I have an extremely broad question about receivers--can associations be made between the brand name of a receiver and what system it is best suited for? For example, some might say "H/K's are great for the person who's likes HT and music equally" or "Kenwood's are wonderful for music but lack in the HT department." This question probably has no simple answer but let me narrow it down by stating that I'm only thinking of receivers under $900. Thanks all

    Scott
     
  2. John Royster

    John Royster Screenwriter

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    Scott,
    You can make broad generalizations about receiver brands and models, but they are very broad. Heck we even disagree on these very same generalizations. [​IMG]
    The best way to get a recommendation on a receiver would be to post what speakers you'll be using, ratio of music/HT and which is more important. You've already got a price point in mind so that helps.
    -ps- Welcome to HTF.
     
  3. Scott_AH

    Scott_AH Stunt Coordinator

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    The speakers I have now aren't worth a darn (bought them when I knew nothing which is only slighty less than I know now). I'll be purchasing new ones at the time I purchase the new reciever. By the way, I listen to mainly HT and maybe only 10% music.

    Scot
     
  4. Yogi

    Yogi Screenwriter

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    I have found that receivers from Denon, HK, Marantz, Rotel, NAD, B&K are great for music and do an equally impressive job on HT. Yamaha Onkyo, Sony ES and Elite are ok for music but good for HT. These are however my own experiences with the speakers/room that I have. Others might differ in their opinions. Like its already been mentioned there cant be any generalizations on this subject. There are as many opinions as there are members on this forum, about this.
     
  5. Angelo.M

    Angelo.M Producer

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    Scott:

    Although your mileage will vary considerably, there are some generalizations you can make about receiver brands. Of course, outliers and variants abound, so you should take each of these stereotypes (pun intended) with about one pound of salt and you'll be doing fine.

    The brands I'm most familiar with, according to my ears:

    H/K - Excellent for music and HT, warm and non-fatiguing in 2-channel stereo.

    Onkyo - More 'oomph' than H/K, with better bass extension and more detail on the high-end. More fatiguing, however.

    Yamaha - See 'Onkyo', but more dynamic in HT.

    Denon - Musically, closer to H/K although not as smooth. Theater-wise, close to Yamaha but not as dynamic.

    Sony ES - Occupies a middle ground. As good in theater as Denon or Yamaha, and not quite up to the H/K in music.

    Can't comment on Marantz, Kenwood, NAD or other brands. Get out there and listen and let us know what you think. For my money, I'd look seriously at H/K, Denon and Sony ES in the $900 and under range.

    -AM
     
  6. John Garcia

    John Garcia Executive Producer

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    Scott, you didn't whether you are more interested in music or HT?

    I pretty much agree with everything Angelo.M said, and I am a Marantz owner, and I can say that Marantz and H/K are very similar in performance.

    I have listened to NAD here and there, but no real critical time with any of their gear, so I can't really give a decent opinion. What I have heard was very good though.
     
  7. Yogi

    Yogi Screenwriter

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  8. Scott_AH

    Scott_AH Stunt Coordinator

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    Thanks for paying attention Yogi! When the time comes to purchase speakers, I'll start a whole new thread. So far I'm thinking of an all BOSE speaker system (that was a joke). The reciever will be taking most of my girlfriend-allowed HT budget for the year so I want to throw everything I have at it for now ($1000 max!). Thanks again.

    Scott
     
  9. Yogi

    Yogi Screenwriter

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    I am offended by the BOSE joke Scott. How can you joke about something as good as BOSE. If I had the money I would buy everything from BOSE. How can I forget that I lost my love to someone else just because he owned BOSE and I didn't.....Now thats what I call a joke[​IMG]
     
  10. Rich Wenzel

    Rich Wenzel Supporting Actor

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    Some other genearlizations:

    The larger companies, Sony, Denon, Pioneer, Onkyo, Marantz (to a lesser extent), Yamaha etc tend to offer more features than similarly priced smaller niche (some would say, more audiophile oriented) brands such as Rotel and NAD.
    That is not to say that the Rotel and NAD are feature light, they just seem to have less of them.


    Also, some would say that Rotel and NAD like brands concentrate more on sound quality, amps etc than the larger companies. Not to say that the brands like Denon, Marantz, Yamaha etc sound bad.

    Remember this a broad generalization, but it seems to hold.

    You could also make the argument that the niche players care more about music than the larger companies.

    Rich
     
  11. Scott_AH

    Scott_AH Stunt Coordinator

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    So for a person who listens to more HT than anything, I should steer clear of them?

    Scott
     
  12. Michael Roderiques

    Michael Roderiques Stunt Coordinator

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    I would not say steer clear of them.

    Companies like NAD and Rotel make excellent products.

    With any system, be it for music or HT, it is a sum of parts. All balanced by what you want in a feature set.

    Another thing to look at this is the cost per doodad or thingamabob. Every added doohickey has a cost.
    As a manufacturer, the retail cost must be at a level that you will buy it and the supply chain makes a profit.

    Or more things do not always equal higher quality construction.
     
  13. Larry B

    Larry B Screenwriter

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    Yogi:
     
  14. Rich Wenzel

    Rich Wenzel Supporting Actor

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    I am not saying stay away from the niche players for HT.

    You have to balance the features that you want (be it now or in the short future as most features change over the long-term) with the sound quality you want.

    I go by this, if two receivers have the same price, but one has more features than the other but the latter sounds better to me (if the feature and sound are better in one vs. the others its basically a no-brainer) i look at the feature difference.

    If one of the features is a power amp for 7 channels, I think to myself, well, I am not using 7 channels now, what is the likelihood within the next two years of me using 7 channels. If its a small percent, then that feature is not worth much to me. If it is likely than that feature may be worth it to me. Its a balance.

    I also look it at this way. I hate selling things. If you sell them to a stero place, well, they beat you up on the price. If you ebay/audiogon, its a pain in the ass. So I think, well, if I don't sell it, Im going to keep it. What will most likely happen? It will go to another room as a 2 channel receiver with possibly some minimal HT. If that is the case, then the sound quality is more important to me than the feature set. Most receivers don't have staying power after 3 years. If you look at a reciever from 3 years ago, the amount of formats its missing is staggering. DPL2, DTS Neo6, DTS ES, 6 channel audio in for SACD/DVD audio, 7 channel decoding, etc. etc. So you will most likely be dedicating it to a place were you will not be using your best equipment. To me that makes the amp section more important, as the quality in that changes minimally over time. I also think, because of that, the niche players hold their value more. As they are based on sound quality and amp quality versus format which is much more volatile.

    I am not knocking onkyo, denon, etc. As they are designed well for what they do. But for me, I prefer the niche players more, as most features are not something that is important to me.

    Finally, I would say the receiver that does music better, most likely will do HT better. Music is the tougher format. If just for the simple reason, that when you listen to music 100% of your focus is on the sound. When you watch a movie, you are splitting your focus between video and sound.
    If I was spending $1,000 on a new receiver. I would look at
    the new NAD T752 which will go for $800ish new and look at getting a used Rotel 1055.

    Rich
     
  15. Larry B

    Larry B Screenwriter

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    Rich:

     
  16. Yogi

    Yogi Screenwriter

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  17. Rich Wenzel

    Rich Wenzel Supporting Actor

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    You could include marsh, creek, arcam, naim, adcom, boulder, krell, sunfire/carver, cary, cinepro, bryston, outlaw, anthem, etc. etc.

    but with the exception of outlaw, they will not be in the sub 1000 category for their receivers...

    actually, with exception of outlaw and carver (and sunfire reportedly), do any of them have a receiver?

    Most of the niche players go right into separates.

    Rich
     
  18. Michael Roderiques

    Michael Roderiques Stunt Coordinator

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    A good question would be how much do you actually use the tuner functions of a receiver?
     
  19. Yogi

    Yogi Screenwriter

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  20. Larry B

    Larry B Screenwriter

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    Yogi:

     

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