Don't kow where to start for a receiver

Discussion in 'AV Receivers' started by Drew Salter, Nov 23, 2003.

  1. Drew Salter

    Drew Salter Agent

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    G'day.

    I'm trying to purchase my first reciever for my home theater. It's nothing to brag about (the theater), but it's mine and I worked hard to get it where it is.

    As of right now, I'm using a friends Pioneer VSX-D710S, but he'd like it back now so I need to purchase one of my own.

    I've got a 51 Sony widescreen, Mission 10" sub and some pretty basic speakers (not to bad, not great). I will also need to replace the center channel when I get the receiver.

    I was trying to get the Pioneer 812 that was popular a while ago, but it seems almost impossible to aquire up here (Toronto).

    I'm looking to spend not more than $500 cdn and as I don't need the top of the line, I'm hoping that will be enough.

    From my simple assesment of my input needs, what I've deduced is the following...

    Optical/co-ax for HDTV and Digital Cable
    Optical/co-ax for XBOX
    Optical/co-ax for DVD
    Optical for HTPC

    Component for HDTV
    Component for XBOX
    Component for DVD
    Component for HTPC (although my TV does have DVI... not sure on this one yet)

    As for the rest, I'm not sure. I don't have a crazy number of components (DVD, VHS, BETA (archival), HDTV, Digital Cable, XBOX, HTPC). A front input would be needed for camcorder and peripheral aps.

    Anyways, I'm going all over the map here and this is my problem. Can somebody point me in the right direction cuz I'm VERY overwhelmed right now and as little as I know, I still know more than the big box sales people.

    Any help is appreciated.

    Drew
     
  2. JeffHunter

    JeffHunter Stunt Coordinator

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    Drew,

    Well ... $500 cnd isn't a whole lot of cash, admitidtly I had less to spend but head over to Ecost.com and have a look at the Harman Kardon AVR325.
     
  3. Drew Salter

    Drew Salter Agent

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    ok thanks. Just having a look now.

    H/K is a fairly reputable brand from what I gather. Products are usually pretty sound?

    Just looking at this, it seems a little underpowered... 60 watts per channel. How do I know what I need in this category?

    One more question that is bothering me and forgive me if it is very newbie... the 5.1, 6.1 and 7.1 breakdown. This receiver is specified as "5.1 and 7.1-channel Logic 7 Cinema and Music modes". Does this mean that I can hook a full 7 speakers up to it plus the sub? Why does it not also list 6.1? I was under the impression also that 7.1 was virtual, separating the center rear channel from a 6.1 configuration.

    Drew
     
  4. JeffHunter

    JeffHunter Stunt Coordinator

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    http://www.harmanaudio.com/search_br...er=AVR%20325-Z

    Logic 7 is a audio mode similar to Dolby Pro Logic II, it's made by Harman Audio.

    And yes it does support 7.1 audio, this means 4 rear speakers, two fronts, a center, and a sub. 7.1 audio is designed to give a better surround sound expeirience. I won't go into it all that much. 60 Watts of *true* power is more than you probably need, have a look around on the forums about peoples expeiriences and explaintions on what HK 60 watts is vs other companies.
     
  5. JeffHunter

    JeffHunter Stunt Coordinator

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    oh by the way Drew .. if you do decide to go with the AVR325 your getting quite the deal. HK is liquidating their stock on all the 25x models as they have just released their new line.... Call up your local Future Shop and ask how much the AVR330 is selling for (probably around $1099-1199) so the fact that you will be able to get the AVR325 for half the price is quite the deal [​IMG]
     
  6. Drew Salter

    Drew Salter Agent

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    ok. I asked around and read a bunch of literature and you're right, this one sounds like one hell of a deal. I will order it.

    Thanks for the assist.

    Drew [​IMG]
     
  7. JeffHunter

    JeffHunter Stunt Coordinator

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    glad I could be of assistance.. [​IMG]

    Jeff

    P.S. .. order me one while your at it .. I'll drive to your house and pick it up [​IMG] (Ottawa Resident)
     
  8. ChrisLazarko

    ChrisLazarko Supporting Actor

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    I also noticed you said it looks somewhat under-powered on your post. This may get confusing what I am trying to explain but bear with me.

    Most other manufacturers out there will rate there recievers at a 1KHz tone at 8Ohms through perhaps just 1 speaker. Basically that will easily yield 100watts per channel, or even 80watts. But that is not reality. Reality is you will be listening from 20Hz-20KHz, which is going to take away from that 80 watts of power. You will also be playing it from at least 5 channels, not just 1.

    Harman rates there recievers truthfully than others (not saying all rate there recievers how I mentioned above), Harman rates them by taking a full 20Hz-20KHz and putting it through 5 speakers, or however many speakers the reciever handles. Most people might say wow this is lower but in reality they are being more honest and giving real ratings. Now to mention that HK under-rates there amps and I wouldn't be suprised if you got an extra 10watts out of your recievers. I know my 55Wx5ch. reciever from HK did about 65watts all channels powered.

    Good luck on your decision and the HK AVR-325 is a really nice reciever.
     
  9. Mark Murphy

    Mark Murphy Supporting Actor

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    Chris is right. I actually had the same Pioneer VSX-710s rated at 100W x 5 and it doesn't hold a candle to my HK AVR 225's 55w x 5. The Pro Logic II and Logic 7 are a huge improvement over the Pioneer's Pro Logic and DSP modes. You'll be glad your friend wanted his Pioneer back.
     
  10. ChrisAG

    ChrisAG Supporting Actor

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    Best advice, do a lot of research, read as many reviews as you can (e-coustics.com comes to mind), and don't buy a bottom of the line model unless it is from a more reputable manufacturer such as Marantz, NAD or Harmon-Kardon. If you can wait a few weeks some stores such as Bay Bloor Radio will be having their "Boxing Week Sale" around the last week of December.
     
  11. Drew Salter

    Drew Salter Agent

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    ok.

    That pisses me off.

    I got to order the thing from ecost. Their page says...

    "For your convenience, we give you a guaranteed total purchase price in Canadian dollars, including all applicable duties, taxes and shipping and handling costs. There are no hidden charges."

    Wonderful. I go through the order process... and they tack on $200 is taxes and shipping!!!! Say WHAT?!

    I'll call tomorrow and see what's what.

    Just when I'd made my decision...

    So anoying.

    Drew
     
  12. ChrisLazarko

    ChrisLazarko Supporting Actor

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    I don't know about Ecost but there are some places that offer audio products to canada for low prices or almost close to none, just like shippin' in the USA. Not sure what the name of the site was but I saw there was one around.

    If they want $200 in shipping and taxes then I would try to find a place around you because I think that's a little insane.
     
  13. Drew Salter

    Drew Salter Agent

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    Ya. I've been trying Future Shop is the cheapest in the area with a price of $899. Which is silly. Sillier still is the next lowest price $1500!!!

    Sigh.

    Think I'm going to be looking for something else unless anyone has some suggestions.

    Drew
     
  14. Dean-P

    Dean-P Stunt Coordinator

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    I just tried the E-Cost site for a H/K 125 @ $179us and after taxes,shipping & gst it came to a total of $305.95can.[​IMG]
    Breakdown:H/K 125=$242.70
    Shipping=$27.64
    Handling=$15.59
    GST=$20.02
    I'm going to get one later...but I thought I would try it out to see what I got as a total. Although it is refurbished;its still about $500 cheaper. [​IMG]
     
  15. Drew Salter

    Drew Salter Agent

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    So how come the shipping on the 125 is only $27 and shipping on the 325 is $90?

    So anoying.
     
  16. JeffHunter

    JeffHunter Stunt Coordinator

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    hmmm I dunno I ordered a HK 225 and I only paid $380 total

    I think I only paid $15 in shipping costs (free upto the border) then Canada Post takes over, ...

    lets see ..
    $224.99 US = $304 CAD

    GST / PST = $~45

    Shipping + Handling = ~$35

    Drew, did you give them a call and ask why there is such a large difference ?
     
  17. JeffHunter

    JeffHunter Stunt Coordinator

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    ahh Drew .. : )

    I figured it out ... the "unit weight" of the HK 325 is 40 pounds ... I'm not sure how much the packaging weights bug I guess it totals upto just over 45 pounds (restriction point for free shipping across the U.S.) ... so on the HK 125 / 225 our stuff is shipped for free upto the border, the 325 just notches above that *free* mark.

    Maybe give them a call and ask if they would ship it for free (across the U.S) or give a discounted shipping charge.

    Or

    if you really want to be a b**t**d. Give Harman Kardon a call, ask them how much the HK 325 weights in packaging

    (if stated below 45 pounds)
    Then call up ecost.com and ask them why the HK 325 does not apply for free shipping, if they state the weight being above their free shipping limit. Beg to differ, .... complain enough and you usually get your way. [​IMG]
     
  18. Mike Wladyka

    Mike Wladyka Supporting Actor

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  19. Drew Salter

    Drew Salter Agent

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    Actually, I called up ecost and they said that they actually were shipping it for free. But it was going to a third party company called "Border Free". They were the ones who are taking on the $90 shipping and Tax.

    I think my best bet is to find someone in the states to ship it too and then have them mail it to me as a "Gift".
     
  20. JeffHunter

    JeffHunter Stunt Coordinator

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    Mike,

    that list is out of date. There are quite a few authorised dealers not listed

    ....

    Drew there is no flipping way that Canada Post charges that much, also on the website the AVR 325 doesn't say "Free Shipping Available" with it like the 125/225 so I'd call back and make sure.
     

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