Denon 3802 dying...need help with the diagnosis, doctor!

Discussion in 'AV Receivers' started by RoyGSoto, Nov 6, 2004.

  1. RoyGSoto

    RoyGSoto Auditioning

    Joined:
    Apr 5, 2004
    Messages:
    13
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    My Denon 3802 has been acting strangely for a while, and now I think it's about to go belly-up. What happens is that it shuts itself off (into standby mode) whenever I play anything too loud. I don't mean HTF-subscriber 'too loud', I mean your-mom type of 'too loud'. In other words, with any components, if I go above a "normal" listening volume, the thing goes click and turns off.

    My assumption is that the amplifiers are sickly. If that's indeed the diagnosis, could I just buy myself a 5-channel amp and use the Denon as a pre-amp (as a slow move towards separates)? In other words, if it's a volume problem, should it continue to be a problem if all of the amplification is coming from a separate amplifier?

    Thoughts?
     
  2. Aaron Smithski

    Aaron Smithski Stunt Coordinator

    Joined:
    Jan 18, 2002
    Messages:
    112
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Sounds like you may have an amp channel going bad.

    I would check out all the speaker wiring to the Denon and the speakers internal wiring as well...you never know...

    You can most definitely bypass the internal amps and use the 3802 as a preamp -- I own one and am doing just that right now for the exact reason you would be!

    Semi-funny story -- I purchased my 3802 (refurb off eBay), and within the first 5 minutes of unboxing it I made a massive bonehead move that still haunts me to this day.

    When hooking up my Parasound HCA-1205A 5-channel amp, I somehow (still am not sure what I was smoking that day) plugged the interconnects from the Parasound into the multi-channel inputs on the Denon instead of the preamp outputs. Oops. Puff of smoke. This started the fun.

    The nearest authorized Denon repair center is 350 miles away. I happen to travel there for business monthly, so I figured I'd just drop it off to avoid shipping. What I figured would be a simple 1-month repair turned in to a 4-month nightmare! After numerous calls to see if it was done yet, I finally got it back after the four month wait, drove it the 350 miles back home, hooked it up, quadruple-checked all connections, powered it up...and the right side surround channel is distorting.[​IMG] Very angry now...

    So, I have to wait another month to drive it back. They take possession of the 3802...for another 3 months!!![​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG]

    The frustration level was off the chart during the wait. During the 7-month period I suffered with a 9-year-old Pro-Logic replacement receiver. But I adopted the "s$%& happens" approach, and figured I finally get to enjoy it now, so what the heck. I did not even check to verify operation the internal amp's operation this time, figuring there was no way possible it couldn't work. I just hooked up my Parasound and enjoyed it for 18 months or so...

    ...which brings me to last week. I disconnected the Parasound as I was planning on selling it, and hooked up the Denon's internal amps. During calibration test tones, I was absolutely sickened when I heard no output coming from the right side surround speaker. Then the left side surround tone came on...and there was output from the left and right side channels! I thought my head was going to explode. Ripped the cover off, traced the wires, and found the "repair tech" had snipped the connection to the right side surround's amplifier, and jumped it's speaker connection to the left side speaker's binding post! Beyond unbelievable.

    So two weeks from now, I get to drive back and present my findings to the manager of the shop...and try to prevent myself from ramming the 3802 down the tech's throat if he still works there!

    Sorry, that ended up a bit long but it feels good to vent. I have heard many horror stories about Denon's authorized service centers...so I highly recommend just getting an outboard amp and using the Denon as a pre/pro! [​IMG]

    Aaron
     
  3. Frank Zimkas

    Frank Zimkas Supporting Actor

    Joined:
    Mar 10, 2002
    Messages:
    888
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    What speakers are you using? Are they 4 or 8ohm? Do you have adequate clearance around and above the receiver?
     
  4. Oupei

    Oupei Agent

    Joined:
    Jan 29, 2004
    Messages:
    33
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    man, I'm in the same denon repair nightmare right now...today makes six months now that my 2803 has been in repairs. If I had heard the stories you heard, I definitely would have bought me something else...
     
  5. Ben_Ly

    Ben_Ly Agent

    Joined:
    Jun 25, 2003
    Messages:
    48
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    My 3300 has the same probably. Finally went belly up this weekend and now only works in stereo mode. For awhile when it would poop out on me I could stomp next to the floor or move the receiver and it would start working again. After much research on audioreview.com I found that it has to do with a bad microprocessor. Guess I'll be shoveling out some more bones to buy another one, but definately not a Denon.
     
  6. Chu Gai

    Chu Gai Lead Actor

    Joined:
    Jun 29, 2001
    Messages:
    7,270
    Likes Received:
    1
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Helluva story Aaron. Good luck shoving it down the guy's throat!
     
  7. dan-0

    dan-0 Stunt Coordinator

    Joined:
    Aug 1, 2003
    Messages:
    156
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    By the time you get that 3802 back the 3806 will be out and it will be time for an upgrade.

    My first AVR was a Denon 700something. I bought it in the early 90's, used it every day for 10 years. The past two years it has found new life as the garage receiver, been working flawlessly in sub-zero temps. My point is that not all of 'em are junk.
     
  8. Aaron Smithski

    Aaron Smithski Stunt Coordinator

    Joined:
    Jan 18, 2002
    Messages:
    112
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Chu,

    Thanks for lending an ear...open up and say ah Mr. "repair" tech![​IMG] The thing that really burns me is I was very cordial and understanding for the first 3 months, and restrained myself from vicious behavior right through the last few months of the ordeal. I was the model customer...never once raised my voice...and this is how I was treated!

    For the record, I don't think Denon makes garbage -- but I have heard (after researching my extended wait time on internet boards) a higher than average amount of complaints about Denon's service. I am simply in an odd situation...doesn't meant Denon is junk.
     
  9. John Garcia

    John Garcia Executive Producer

    Joined:
    Jun 24, 1999
    Messages:
    11,571
    Likes Received:
    25
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Location:
    NorCal
    Real Name:
    John
    I would simply ask them to replace the unit. I actually would have asked them to replace it after the first inequity on their part. Though the original problem was unfortunately caused by you, the fact is, it should have been repaired correctly.

    As for the original post, IMO, the FIRST thing that should be checked is always the wiring. It really sounds like a short or backwards connection, not necessarily a sick amp. If you disconnect some or all but one of the speakers does it do the same thing? If not, then the problem is more likely wiring or even a damaged speaker. As noted, speakers that are too low of an impedance is also a possiblity.

    If it DOES do it with fewer speakers connected, then I'd say start looking for a new receiver...
     
  10. Chu Gai

    Chu Gai Lead Actor

    Joined:
    Jun 29, 2001
    Messages:
    7,270
    Likes Received:
    1
    Trophy Points:
    0
    I'd take photos of that 'repair' and John's strategy is where I'd be headed. Then try and contact somebody higher up on the Denon food chain and maybe make a couple of more posts on different forums (AVS, the Spot, etc.) and see if that solicits some action on Denon's part. Make sure you include the photos. Embarass the f***ers I say!
     
  11. RoyGSoto

    RoyGSoto Auditioning

    Joined:
    Apr 5, 2004
    Messages:
    13
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Thanks for the suggestions. I'm in the midst of a move (which happens to coincide with a promotion and a raise) so I'll check the wiring when I unpack my boxes, and then my plan is to borrow an amp from the local audio store to see what happens. My speakers are Paradigm Studio 100s, and I'm trying to decide between a Rotel 1075 vs. 1095 amp. Suggestions? If the Denon functions fine as a preamp I'll leave it at that, and if it continues to die, I officially get to move into "separates" world!
     
  12. Aaron Smithski

    Aaron Smithski Stunt Coordinator

    Joined:
    Jan 18, 2002
    Messages:
    112
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0


    Chu & John, I like the way you guys think. I was considering something along those lines regarding the exploitation. We'll see what transpires...

    Roy, sorry to 'jack the thread. John has some great troubleshooting suggestions to try out. If it does turn out the Denon is dying, the smaller Rotel amp would work great -- but if you can swing it the larger one would be the way to go since your Paradigms can swallow a lot of power.
     
  13. Lewis Besze

    Lewis Besze Producer

    Joined:
    Jul 28, 1999
    Messages:
    3,134
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Let's remeber the fact how Denon "warns" everybody about non authorized sellers/void warranty,yet you have deal with a lousy service like that, even though you bought from authorized seller[I assume].This is why I've never paid full price for any Denon equipment,nor cared about Denon's scare tactics,and interestingly they never needed repair. [​IMG]
    My 9 year old AVR-3600 is still working even after the "attempted murder" UPS was try to commit.[​IMG]
     
  14. John Garcia

    John Garcia Executive Producer

    Joined:
    Jun 24, 1999
    Messages:
    11,571
    Likes Received:
    25
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Location:
    NorCal
    Real Name:
    John
    If you scrutinize any decent size manufacturer, I'm sure you will find there are plenty of complaints about their service and/or quality because people who don't have problems with their system generally aren't going to be heard from.

    I have a friend who used to work at a service center for a big named manufacturer and he said the techs were definitely less than top teir...
     
  15. Lewis Besze

    Lewis Besze Producer

    Joined:
    Jul 28, 1999
    Messages:
    3,134
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Oh I agree with that, however Denon goes the extra miles to "scare" people into paying full price.I think they should spend that "energy" elswere.Nonetheless I think their products among the more reliable ones.
     
  16. RoyGSoto

    RoyGSoto Auditioning

    Joined:
    Apr 5, 2004
    Messages:
    13
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Just an update:

    I took the Denon into my audio dealer and hooked it through the Rotel 1075 and 1095 amps. It died without the amps, and didn't die with the amps. Sounded better with the bigger amp (200x5) on Paradigm 100s (same speakers I have at home), so I decided I was going to go with the bigger amp. So then the audio dude says "try THIS amp now", and hooked the Denon through the B&K 200x5, and the improvement in sound quality was remarkable! So at that point I'd decided to go with the B&K using the Denon as a preamp, when on a lark I asked him to remove the Denon altogether, and let me listen to the B&K Ref 50 preamp with the B&K amp...AMAZING difference. He made me a great deal, and that's what I bought...so bye-bye Denon (and bye-bye cash)! Woohoo!
     
  17. John Garcia

    John Garcia Executive Producer

    Joined:
    Jun 24, 1999
    Messages:
    11,571
    Likes Received:
    25
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Location:
    NorCal
    Real Name:
    John
    Congrats! The Ref 50 is sweet sounding. You could alwasy E-bay or sell the 3802 at a heavily reduced price with the info that it has amp problems but could be used as a pre-pro, and make a few bucks back.
     

Share This Page