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May 11, 2008
Real Name
denon 3808 CI


Elite VSX 94-THX

fairly new to Home theater stuff, but have narrowed my choice to the 2 to start of my theater system right. Yes, the denon's ( which i have read has had some stellar reviews )and have alway's been a great product.... First of all, it may sound weird but, where is the 3808 made and how does the pioneer elite receiver do up against it head to head in terms of features, sound, video processing and the like...

I am a huge pioneer fan in the car audio world, so I didnt wanna get to jumpy on moving into home theatre based upon what my truck sound like...

any input or links would be greatly appreciated....

Dave Moritz

Senior HTF Member
Jul 7, 2001
Real Name
Dave Moritz
Hey Mike,

I have been doing a lot of research of the past few months as I am looking to upgrade my Yamaha RX-V995. Both receivers are nice and would do a good job, but I honestly feel that you would most likely be better off with a 3808CI.

Have you listened to ether receiver yet? If not I would recommend going to your nearest retailer with a few of your favorite cd’s. Also make sure when you audition the receivers you have them use identical speakers if possible. This IMHO is the best way to demo equipment and should help you choose the one that sounds best to you.

One thing you will want to know is that Sound & Vision did a bench test and many of the new receivers do not put out what the advertised specs are. I do not have the same data for the 3808CI but it should give you a decent idea of what to expect from ether model.

Pioneer VSX-94TXH
Output at clipping (1 kHz into 8/4 ohms)
1 channel driven: 178/300 W (22.5/24.8 dBW)
5 channels driven (8 ohms): 84 W* (19.2 dBW)
7 channels driven (8 ohms): 61 W* (17.9 dBW)
Sound and Vision Magazine - Test Bench: Pioneer VSX-94TXH A/V Receiver

Yamaha RX-V1800
Output at clipping (1 kHz into 8/4 ohms)
1 channel driven: 158/281 W (22/24.5 dBW)*
5 channels driven (8 ohms): 103 W (20.1 dBW)
7 channels driven (8 ohms): 55 W (17.4 dBW)

Denon 4308CI
Output at clipping (1 kHz into 8/4 ohms)
1 channel driven: 171/280 W (22.3/24.5 dBW)
5 channels driven (8 ohms): 126 W (21 dBW)
7 channels driven (8 ohms): 111 W (20.5 dBW)

While the Denon fall short from it advertised power output, so does the Pioneer as well. But to my knowledge the Denon’s power amp section is a little stronger than the Pioneer’s amplifier. This is one area where the Denon is stronger and the reviews so far place favor with the Audyssey vs MCACC (Pioneer), YPAO (Yamaha) or Digital Cinema Auto Calibration (Sony).

Both 3808ci and VSX-94TXH have HDMI 1.3a inputs and internally decode Dolby Digital Plus, Dolby True HD and DTS-HD Master Audio.

I tried my best to dig up this information and it should be correct, had to redo it after my browser crashed. And from what I hear the Denon GUI is supposed to be nicer than the Pioneer GUI, but that is my understanding. I am not sure what your plans are for your home theater or what your budget might be? If you are open to adding a power amplifier down the road you could do that to upgrade the internal amplifier later on. Ultimately you need to live with your purchase and while anyone here could say what you should purchase. Do some research and most importantly do some listening test. While I believe the Denon would be a good choice think about your needs and future plans for your home theater. Always try to get the biggest bang for your buck and leave plenty of room for upgrading in the future so you will not have to replace the receiver before you really need to. I am not sure how stout the Pioneer’s amplifiers are but I have personally seen Denon demos at CES where mid level receivers using M&K speakers operating at 4 Ohm loads in a large room at high volumes. And the Denon handled it quite well and I was very impressed. Anyway I hope this helps in some way and good hunting!

Denon AVR-3808CI 7.1 Receiver
Power 130 watts x 7 channels (8ohms 20-20kHz 0.05%) Surround Mode
Dynamic Power:
140 W (8 ohms, 2 ch)
210 W (4 ohms, 2 ch)
Faroudja DCDi video processing (FLI-2310)
Frequency Response 10 Hz–100 kHz/+1 dB, -3 dB (Direct mode)
S/N Ratio 102dB
THD 0.005% (20-20kHz Direct Mode)
DACs S/N Ratio 102dB
Dolby® TrueHD, Dolby Digital Plus and dts-HD™ Master AudioDTS Decoder
Audyssey MultEQ XT & MultEQ Pro calibration installer ready
Audyssey Dynamic EQ calibration installer ready
Audyssey MultEQ XT room correction with eight (8) mic positions
Multi-Channel Stereo Mode 5/6/7
MP3 Decoding
WMA Decoding
Ipod Ready
EQ 7 Band
Multi-Zone 3
3 component video inputs (100MHz), One Output
HDMI Inputs 4 / Outputs 1
HDMI Version V1.3 Repeater
Expanded HDMI v1.3a ports with Deep Color, xvYCC and SACD support.
Analogue to HDMI video conversion/scaling (480p/720p/1080i/1080p)
USB port (front and rear) for portable music players/flash drives/HDD with Command and Control functionality, on-screen data.
Ethernet Input
8-Ch. External Analog Input
8-Ch. External Analog Preout
Power Consumption ---W / 7.2A
Weight 39.2

Pioneer VSX-94TXH 7.1 Receiver
Power (8ohms 20-20kHz 0.09%) /Ch 140W – Surround Mode
Continuous Power (6ohms 1kHz 0.7%) /Ch 160W
Dynamic Power ?
Faroudja DCDi video processing ---
Distortion at 1 watt(THD+N, 1 kHz) 8/4 ohms: 0.05/0.06%
Frequency Response (Line) 10 Hz to 81 kHz +0, –3 dB (Direct mode)
S/N Ratio 103dB (Line)
Dolby® TrueHD, Dolby Digital Plus and dts-HD™ Master AudioDTS Decoder
Advanced MCACC
Advanced MCACC Graphic PC Output
Multi-Zone 3
9-band EQ
WMA-9 Pro Decoder
iPod Music
3 component video inputs (100MHz), One Output
HDMI Inputs 4 / Outputs 1
HDMI Version V1.3 Repeater
Transcodes composite-, component-, and S-video to HDMI; deinterlaces 480i; scales up to 1080p (480i/p signals) or 720p/1080i.
Ethernet Input
HDMI SACD Transfer
HDMI DVD-Audio Transfer
8-Ch. External Analog Input
8-Ch. External Analog Preout
Power Consumption 530W
Weight 41.14 lbs

You might want to consider this as an option, especially if you look at buying a factory refurbished 905.

Onkyo TX-NR905 Receiver
Power (8ohms 20-20kHz 0.05%) /Ch 140W
Power (8ohms 1kHz 0.7%) /Ch 170W
Dynamic Power 400 W (3 ohms, 1 ch)
300 W (4 ohms, 1 ch)
180 W (8 ohms, 1 ch)
High Instantaneous Current Capability 70A
Frequency Response 5 Hz–100 kHz/+1 dB, -3 dB (Direct mode)
S/N Ratio (LINE IN) 110dB
DACs S/N Ratio 126dB
DOLBY Decoder DD Plus, TrueHD
DTS Decoder DTS-HD Master Audio
Audyssey MultEQ XT
Multi-Band Speaker EQ 7 Band
Component Video / Bandwidth 3 / 2 / 100MHz
HDMI I/O 4 / 2
HDMI Version V1.3 Repeater
Power Consumption 1000W
Weight 54 lbs. (24.5 kg)
Warranty 2 Years New / 1 Year Refurbished
MSRP $2,099
If you buy a factory refurbished 905 you can get it alot cheaper if you want to go that route? Under $1,400 at accessories4less

If you decide that an amplifier down the road might be a possibility to upgrade the internal amplification with an external amplifier. Here is a good possibility you may want to consider other than going with brands like Adcom, Outlaw or B&K.

Emotiva MPS-2 7 channel power amp (MSRP $1,699)
200 watts per channel at 8 ohms
300w/ch @ 4 ohms
400w/ch @ 2 ohms
THD less than .015%, 20Hz-20kHz with 80kHz measurement bandwidth
Completely Stable into 2 ohm loads
High efficiency Class H power amplifier design
350VA Toroidal transformer
modular mono block design
weighs 115 pounds
5 year warranty

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