- Dec 16, 2002
Obviously I haven't been here in years but trying to get back to the home theater hobby that's been on hold while other hobbies have taken over. Anyhow, for years I've been wanting my surround back channels to have some output in my system besides the other 5 speakers. When listening to 5.1 digital sources, that's fine as I have EX and ES. However we listen to many movies that are DD 2.0 that need decoding. I've been using DTS Neo:6 but the the soundstage is really unimpressive with the everything collapsing towards the front with little information from behind. Switching to Dolby Prologic II with no surround back channels or clones surround channel signals on those surround back channels, just blows the DTS Neo:6 presentation away! I think I'm finally done with DTS Neo:6, it just sound badly next to everything. It throws the front soundstage further back and takes away the rear soundstage and leaves only a whisper to what should be there. So to get the soundstage I want, I have to have Dolby Prologic IIx, I don't need the IIz or Audisey soundstage. I used to have Yamaha receivers, I never liked the idea of a 2 height channels. I like the rear surround back channels much better. Here's my other problem, I record analog signals a lot for which the Denon AVR-3803 was a power house. Unfortunately, the new receivers are whimps when it comes to inputs. I guess Hollywood scared everyone from recording so the makers made it as hard as possible by making receiver with few inputs. I need 1 monitored audio input and 2 monitored A/V inputs but the TX-NR709 has neither, it only has 1 A/V input that offers outputs as well, but they are not monitored. To me, this is garbage, but unfortunately, Onkyo is no further behind other receivers up to twice it's price because none of the receivers today offers 'real' recording abilty which is a bunch of crock. To get around this part way, I have a recording center switch box for 3 audo recording loops. I've elected to use just one video recorder so that I don't have to make a work around to record on more than one device, using another A/V switch box (not made for recording). I don't want to get into a situation where I would have feedback and possible speaker damage. The reason I'm considering the Onkyo, despite my aggrevations with it's input/output limitations, is the fact it's the best receiver up to twice it's cost, with input compatibility. Hense, my DVD recorders use S-Video and composite with it's dot crawl and such, is something I don't want to record from. So I need S-Video. I also need composite for some other video sources. Surprisingly, many receivers now are incompatible with A/V devices still being sold today. Some HK receivers don't even offer analog video switching which is horrible. I also need optical and coaxial digital audio inputs that many receivers lack today.The reason is I absolutely hate LCD Tvs and have stuck to my 36" tube TV. Eventually I'll be getting a Plasma but right now money is tighter. I don't like LCD because of the motion artifacts, horrible black levels, terrible viewing angles horizontally and vertically. I hate the polarized picture I get from my LCD in my camper when we watch below it's 'sweet' spot. We have to angle it down, which is hard, since it's stand isn't made to do that. Looking at the sides, it gets darker. Same situation that projection TVs had but worse with the polarization. LED TVs are better but Plasmas are the best. We just bought my friend a 50" 3D Plasma TV last week and I set up his Home theater for him. He's Electronically challenged. So I'm awed by the Onkyo's ability and hookups next to most receivers today costing up to twice as much. The Onkyo looks like a great receiver. Also I can buy one for under $550 from an authorized dealer. I have heard negatives about it when it first came out about the inputs cycling and remote being none functional but Onkyo released a fix for that. I also heard it has a fan which would make me happy as it's a light weight at only 27 lbs. My Denon is 38 lbs and my last Yamaha was 44 lbs. They had no fan cooling so they need more heavy heat sinks. Is there any other negatives I need to know about this receiver. I do a lot more video watching than audio listening now a days but sound quality is important, that's why I went to Denon. The Denon was smooth and effortless up to it's clipping point. The Yamaha I had got harsh and bright sounding at only 2/3rds of it's volume knob. I've heard Onkyo receivers were bright sounding and some said neutral. What's everyone's opinion on these Onkyo's??? Do they get bright/harsh when driven to louder volumes or do they sound neutral. I don't want a warm/mush sounding receiver either that loses the details. Thanks for the help. BTW, I have Infinity Reference 2000.4 mains with reference speakers through out and a Velodyne subwoofer.