Features vs. cost of Denon 4802

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by Mariusz Filonowicz, Nov 1, 2001.

  1. Mariusz Filonowicz

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    I currently own 3802, but everybody is really describing 4802 as a significant step up. How's the features-to-cost comparison between these two models. I can afford 4802 and if it's worth it, I'm going to upgrade to 4802 model. Is there that much difference. I'm 30% music/70% movies.
    Thank you.
     
  2. Luis M

    Luis M Second Unit

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    I would do what Mark said, get an external amp and forget about the 4802. I was going to get the 4802 when I first heard of it, but when Denon decided to put a suggested retail of $2,500 I took my old reliable and great sounding ADCOM II and put to work together with my Denon 3801. the ADCOM powers the left and right channels and the Denon handles the rest, needless to say the sound is awsome and trust me power is a big issue here. Some times these companies loose perspective. $2,500 is a lot of money for a receiver, speacially if you have better seperate alternatives. My two cents
     
  3. chaz fifer

    chaz fifer Agent

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    I'd go for the 4802.It is a SIGNIFIGANT step up from the 3802! Although there are alot of debates about THX post processing,I believe it is well worth having.before I owned a THX certified receiver,I might have recommended the seperate amp instead. Im very glad I compared the 4802 to the 3801 (my other receiver) and the 3802.I'd go with the 4802 again in a minute!
    ------------------
    "I'm trying to contain an outbreak and you're driving the monkey to the airport!"
     
  4. Michael Lee

    Michael Lee Supporting Actor

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  5. Mac

    Mac Agent

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    The 4800 has DTS 96/24 capability. What does this mean? Is there new software--movies and music that will coming out in the future to support this. I really like DTS and this would be a major factor in my decision as this is the first receiver to incorporate this technology. On the other hand, I do not want to wait a year before software starts shoeing up. Heck, DTS ES stil only has 4 movie titles out and no music.
    Mac
     
  6. Jeremy Hegna

    Jeremy Hegna Supporting Actor

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    "So the moral of the story is that when you start getting in the $2500-$3500 range its better to go the separates route by stretching a little further."
    Mark, you make a decent argument and the fact that you've done an A/B comparison makes it even more valid from my POV. However, I think you're missing a lot of ingredients that go into a buying decision of buying a unit such as the 5800.
    There are a ton of things that the 5800 has over the 3801 in the processor section. Since you've messed with one, I'm sure you're aware of this.
    The 5800 is set up as an incredible HT receiver as WELL as a 2 channel music receiver. The Alpha processing and Pure Direct mode allow for some of the best 2 channel music listening I've heard on a receiver. The connectibiliy; 2 sets of 8 channel analog pass through, ability to pass Hi-Def signal without degradation, RS-232 port (future upgrades), etc. etc.
    I would compare the 5800 more towards the B&K REF-30 or some of the other pre/pros costing 2.5-$3.5 thousand. While it may be true that adding a good seperate amp to the 3801 will give you more UMPH than that of the 5800, it would do the same with a 5 year old Kenwood Pro-logic HTB receiver, providing it had pre-outs. The missing ingredients in the Kenwood or the 3801 is in the pre/pro section.
    Not that I'm a features guy....I could care less about DPLII, but the build quality of internal components, the connectibility, future-proofness, and the unnecessary addition of a heavier amp section was the determining factor for me. And, BTW, I've watched all of the movies you mentioned and my 5800 has NEVER clipped, NEVER shut down, and it's never gone into protect....honestly.
    Jeremy
     
  7. Marvin

    Marvin Screenwriter

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    Just out of curiousity, if you use the pre-outs on your receiver and connect an amp, do you use the volume controls on the amp or receiver? Which piece do you use to calibrate your speaker levels? And suppose your receiver has only 3 pre-outs (as mine - Denon 2700 - does)? Do you have to use both sets of volume controls? Sounds like it would be difficult to calibrate. (Sorry if this is a dumb question.)
     
  8. Jeremy Hegna

    Jeremy Hegna Supporting Actor

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    Marvin,
    It's very simple, actually.
    You set the gain on the amp to suggested setting and adjust the receivers volume from there. You would calibrate as normal after introducing the amplifier.
    Are your pre-out for FL,Center, and FR? If so, you could hook up a 3 channel amp, use 3 monoblocks, or a 2 channel amp for the mains. Connect an RCA jack from the pre-out of the receiver to the input on the amp. Connect your speakers to the outputs of the amp, set the gain, and forget about it. You may do some fine tuning with the gain, but otherwise it's pretty simple.
    Jeremy
     
  9. Jack F

    Jack F Agent

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    My testing with 3 different 3801's and 2 different Adcom GFA-6000 Amplifiers was completely opposite.
    The 3801's sound just did not please me or anyone in my family. With or without the Adcom Amplifier.
    It was bright, harsh and non dynamic sounding.
    Please note - My whole family uses Klipsch Legend series Speakers.
    While its possible that these combinations just did not go together, Klipsch/Adcom/Denon 3801, the AVR-5800 sounds absolutely amazing. Very dynamic.
    I'm not trying to discredit Mark. I'm just saying that in all of my experiences with the above equipment, I found the sound from the 3801 with or without the Adcom Amps unpleasing.
    Those same Adcom Amps hooked to and Adcom Pro-Logic Pre-Amp, sounded almost as good as the 5800. [​IMG]
     
  10. Martice

    Martice Screenwriter

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    The most important aspect regarding receivers and amps IMO is the power. I hear a lot of people raving about this receiver and that receiver saying it's future proof and powerful and next thing you know, yep it's for sale because of some feature on the newest receiver has now made the previous receiver less desirable some how. I told my brother that the audio business is very much like the music business in that they both survive on how many times they can get you to purchase something over and over and over again. The music industry survives not on new talent but the publishing rights of music long gone by that people usually remake or they rerelease on some type of compilation album. The audio industry and the receiver, thrive on convincing you that you need this piece now and until we bring out the next one that does this and that and is future ready just like the one you had previously to this one.
    I remember a while ago I was actually going to buy the Denon AVR3300 receiver. I remember the press this piece received. I remember telling my wife 'honey it even has 6 inputs in the back so that it's future ready. It seems that the receiver never made it to the future.
    To the poster, go out and buy you the best power amp you can buy(try second hand). You will never hear your speakers and your system with out the proper headroom provided by a capable and good quality amp. Processors will come and go but good amps and speakers, you can keep them long enough to pass to your kids if you treat them well enough. Hell at the prices of some of these receivers, you can buy them and use them for the processing and bypass all of the internal amplification. But then again, what's the point if you do that?
    ------------------
    What if it gets no better than this!?!
    [Edited last by Martice on November 02, 2001 at 10:29 PM]
     
  11. Jeremy Hegna

    Jeremy Hegna Supporting Actor

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    "I remember a while ago I was actually going to buy the Denon AVR3300 receiver. I remember the press this piece received. I remember telling my wife 'honey it even has 6 inputs in the back so that it's future ready. It seems that the receiver never made it to the future."
    Martice, I also own a Denon 3300...and it has easily made it to the future. There were many other much more expensive pieces of gear that came out the same time as the 3300, e.g. the Lexicon MC-1 that DO NOT have 6 channel inputs for DVD-A/SACD inputs while the 3300 does. I'd say that's pretty damn good for a receiver that is almost 4 years old and could be purchased at it's peak for $6-700. I'm not saying that the 3300 is as good a pre/pro as the MC-1, but it has held its own. I wouldn't be afraid to recommend the purchase of one of these pieces for someone on a 3-400 budget that isn't concerned with more than 5 channels or DPLII.
    The 3300 was the first real Denon gear that I owned (up until then a little bookshelf system). It is one of the biggest reasons I chose their flagship...Their gear IS about as future-proof as can be asked at this time.
    Sorry to stray of topic a bit and I'm not sure from reading your post as to whether or not you got it when you explained that to your wife. Maybe not, since you feel that it is obsolete at present.
    Jeremy
     
  12. Martice

    Martice Screenwriter

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    Hi Jeremy. The Denon AVR3300 was and still is an excellent piece of gear. I never did get it but my brother did and he still has his as well. The point I was making is not that people shouldn't buy receivers at all but how we tend to buy them.
    The Denon 3300 is an excellent receiver and obviously you didn't sell it because it didn't have a certain DSP or the like. It's still capable to deliver the chills down your neck during movies. However, there may be a time when you feel that the sound of your receiver doesn't bring those chills anymore. So some of us tend to whip out the lucky dice and head on down to buy the next "all in one" receiver with new features to boot with hopes that the amplification does it's part. I don't agree with this strategy and here's why. If you feel that you'd like to experience 6.1 or 7.1 processing that's fine. However, if it's at the expense of having to purchase and settle for new amplification all over again and hoping the unit performs as well in the audio department as it does in the processing department then count me out.
    If you ever feel the need to upgrade your Denon 3300 I would say that you should not do it until you have at least a separate 2-channel amp already. This way when you go out shopping for a new receiver you know what you're really buying and that's PROCESSING and things should fall into focus better as far as recognizing a good deal or not.
    The importance of the Outlaw 950 is this. It attempts to put in the hands of people who usually use receivers a powerful separate pre/pro for peanuts! This will also introduce to SOME of us the flexibility and power of separates and perhaps bring more attention to their other power amps as well. If this thing sounds at least as good as the best Sony and Marantz pre/pros the industries in trouble and if it surpasses them in regards to audio capability then expect it to be the product of the year which to me on paper, it already is. Hey if receivers are your thing that's cool! However, I don't recommend the game of purchasing and repurchasing power unless you find it cheaper to spring for one of the cheaper receivers for the processing alone.
    Will I buy the Outlaw 950? I doubt it. However, I tend to think that if I did buy it I would absolutely know that I was buying PROCESSING and not amplification all over again.
    ------------------
    What if it gets no better than this!?!
    [Edited last by Martice on November 03, 2001 at 07:05 AM]
     
  13. Lewis Besze

    Lewis Besze Producer

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  14. Jack F

    Jack F Agent

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    Also, I believe the Subwoofer plays a major role in achieveing those levels. I'm not under the understanding that the Receiver/Pre-Pro bares the sole responsibility of achieving those levels.
    Thats why their are thousand watt powered Subs. [​IMG]
    Or 2,400 watts like the new Klipsch RSW-15. [​IMG]
     
  15. Jeremy Hegna

    Jeremy Hegna Supporting Actor

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    Martice...I agree with your points. I am (have been) in the process of finding a seperate 2 channel amp to drive my mains in my HT. This will be my first foray into seperate territory....even though my pre/pro is still a receiver. When it's time to get rid of my 5800, I will probably not end up with a receiver...however, I don't see this being the case until at least a couple of years down the road.
    And who knows? If at that time, the pre/pro with the most capabilities IS a receiver, I may go that route once again.
    My point is that some of these receivers now days can be the best deal for many people at a very reduced cost over a seperates system....and still offer very good amplification.
    And I agree with you...if it is time to upgrade the sound and the only features you don't have are DPLII or DTS-ES discreet, it's probably time to think about extra or out board amplification....instead of an entirely new receiver.
    The addition over the past couple of years to our receivers of pre-outs only adds crediblity to this issue. Most manufacturers realize that internal amplifiers can only go so far...especially with the addition of the high resolution formats like SACD and DVD-A. Some actually suggest full range speaker all the way around for optimum play back results. In this case, one will definitely benefit by adding extra UMPH!!!!
    Jeremy
     
  16. MatthewJ S

    MatthewJ S Supporting Actor

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    two quick thoughts,
    the pre-out sections of most receivers just aren't up to the quality standards pre amps have...
    no one will state "for the record" how much the thx certification is adding (retail) to the price of the unit
     
  17. Jack F

    Jack F Agent

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    Mark Damon said -
    "So the combination of a bright speaker (Klipsh) to a bright amp (adcom) was suicide to begin with and would definitely lead to listening fatigue."
    In that case, the Adcom Pre-Amp must be so warm sounding that its close to being on Fire. And that would make the 5800's sound like molten Lava.
    Not trying to be argumentative, just presenting my experiences. The 3801 is too bright for my taste with my Klipsch Speakers, no matter what Amp you could hook it too.
    I'm not saying that SS Amps don't have Warm or Bright characteristics, (though some people would argue that case) I'm saying that the 3801 is bright and I don't think theirs an Amp made that's warm enough to make it sound pleasing to me with any of the Legend or KG series Klipsch Speakers.
    Maybe with Boston Acoustics or other brand speakers, I would have had a different experience. That's pointless to me as I own and use Klipsch speakers.
    "So I ask the person that did the 3802 + Adcom comparison to do this same comparison with a warmer sounding amp to get the best result."
    Or, you could use a warmer sounding Receiver or Pre-Amp, like I did.
    My experiences enlightened me as to how much the sound going in to the Amp can vary. It is my belief that the Receiver/Pre-Pro plays a larger role in sound signature than the Amp does.
    That's the reason I feel the need to speak up when someone advises another person that they would be better off adding an Amp than upgrading from a 3801 to a 5800.
    Its simply not always true. And in my experiences would have been the worst thing I could have done.
    I started out in search of a PreAmp that had all of the features I wanted in the first place. I ended up with the 5800 on my shelf and my Adcom Amp sitting in the closet. I couldn't be happier. I like to listen to music and movies loud. If I can't feel the sound, then I don't bother. The 5800 does everything I want it to and the sound is amazing.
    IMHO - All of this persuading people to go separates is pooey. Maybe the Outlaw 950 will change that. I hope it does. Its disappointing to see what the other manufacturers offer and at what price, just to see them go obsolete as fast as the new flagship Receivers.
    I purchased and returned a B&K Reference 20 and decided that B&K wasn't for me.
    My known options boiled down to a Proceed or Rotel PreAmp in the $5,000.00 range to use with my 100x3/60x2 Adcom Amp or the Denon 5800 for $3100.00 with its included 170x7, (140x5 real world) Amp.
    I've never regreted my decision for a second. [​IMG]
    YMMV/FSO
    Jack
     
  18. Jeremy Hegna

    Jeremy Hegna Supporting Actor

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    "I would disagree with this. IMHO (and in the opinion of a majority of audioreview survey candidates, some time back) the components that affect sound in their decreasing relavance are:
    1) speakers
    2) Amp
    3) Preamp
    4) Source
    5) Cables, etc."
    Mark,
    I remember this post some time ago, and it didn't come down to this opinion exactly. There were many that would change the order of 2 and 3. I will agree that speakers are number one.
    If I was to use two simarly priced, simarly output matched amplifiers....say the Parasound 2205 and the Rotel 1095, and A/B'ed two simarly priced pre/pros...maybe the B&K Ref 30 and the Lexicon DC-1...I would argue that the pre/pro is going to shape the sonics MORE than the associated amplifiers. The processing in the digital domain is the number one noise shaping component, IMO in a system after the speakers....again, if we compare apples to apples in amplifiers.
    I would be curious to know who the majority of audio review candidates that you refer to in your post. In so many reviews that I've seen...adjectives used to describe pre/pros, outnumber those that I've seen describing amplifiers [​IMG]
    jeremy
     
  19. Jack F

    Jack F Agent

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    Mark,
    As I said - I'm not trying to be argumentative. Just stating what my findings have been.
    I'm not quoting any magazine articles or supposed tests. Just what I found with the equipment I tested.
    The same Amp and Speakers hooked to the Adcom Pre-Amp had a very pleasing, WARM and DYNAMIC sound. The same Speakers hooked to the 5800 have a very pleasing, WARM and DYNAMIC sound.
    With the 3801 as the input source, the sound was bright, non dynamic and unpleasing to listen to. It sounded like a LIMP PUPPY and in my opinion, it wasn't entirely due to the internal Amplification. The Amp may color the sound slightly, but if you put sh*t in, you will get louder sh*t out.
    Theirs a good reason why I didn't change speakers. I like the ones I have. They play very loud, (99db 1w/1m efficiecy) and have a nice, clean, punchy, detailed sound when used with the right equipment. The 3801 just isn't on that list, with or without external amplification. Maybe the B&K Amp would have been slightly better, I'm sure it wouldn't have been the world of difference that was required to make the 3801 a consideration for me.
    I have added all I can in regards to adding an Amp to a 3801.
    [Edited last by Jack F on November 05, 2001 at 01:46 PM]
     
  20. Jack F

    Jack F Agent

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    "The Amp may color the sound slightly, but if you put sh*t in, you will get louder sh*t out." - Jack F.
    So according to you, the source should have the most effect on sound since thats where sh*t originates? and once that sh*t is in your system all your preamp is going to do it let out slightly bigger sh*t and then the amp would make it huge sh*t....hmmm minteresting observation though."
    So, your saying if you put sh*t into a good Amp, it will come out smelling like a Rose? [​IMG]
    I need one of these magic Amps. [​IMG]
     

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