I am going to bite the bullet on Bryston...

Discussion in 'AV Receivers' started by ArthurJ, Aug 10, 2003.

  1. ArthurJ

    ArthurJ Second Unit

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    Being from Canada I have deceided to go with Bryston's 9B SST 5 ch. amplifier in Silver finish. The reason being is I know within 2 years time if I get a mediocore amplifier I will upgrade anyways and end up spending twice as much in the end. Plus the transferrable 20 year warrenty is very attractive. So with that said, I need a pre/pro with the following features...

    It has to be in silver finish
    between $1500-$2000
    It has to be UPGRADEABLE

    I dont feel like plunking down a load of cash on a receiver and having to upgrade for the current formats in a years time. I want both these pieces of equipment to last me for a VERY long time. Thanks!
     
  2. Nick V

    Nick V Second Unit

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    To put it simply, there's not really such a thing. The Rotel RSP-1066 is close, but it's still above $2000 CDN if I remember correctly. It is not hardware upgradeable though, only firmware.

    Another one that will be close is the hopefully soon to be released pre/pro from Audio Refinement. It will basically be a Pre2 with 7.1 rather than only 5.1.

    Rotel RSP-1066
    Audio Refinement Pre2
     
  3. MikeTz

    MikeTz Stunt Coordinator

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    Arthur:

    Your requirements are challenging. You can get the Rotel 1066 or 1098 for less than $2000US, and some folks have even purchased the Anthem pre/pro used for less than $2000US. Both the Rotel and Anthem units are upgradeable through firmware. I only know of one line of pre/pros that have expansion slots for hardware/firmware upgrades and those are the very expensive Meridian units.

    No digital pre/pro is going to be current for more than a few years. Formats change, processing evolves, features change very quickly in this area. Your budget will buy a nice pre/pro but it won't have all the latest decoding logic in a few years. All digital gear becomes obsolete quickly (including your computer). So consider getting the most pre/pro for the least, because you will be buying another one in five years (or less).

    I have a Bryston 9B-SST and a Rotel 1066 and I'm very happy with both music and theater performance. Your amp purchasing logic is rational but expecting the digital pre/pro to stay current a long time is probably a stretch. If you buy a Rotel 1066 (about $1500US) you will get a competent unit that will sound great for years but may not be able to decode new formats in the future if they require more than a firmware change.

    Good luck.

    MT
     
  4. ArthurJ

    ArthurJ Second Unit

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    Thanks a lot guys for your help...
    my price range is in U.S. dollars, I figured most guys on here are from the states so I converted it to make things easier. I think I am going to check that rotel out.

    Any other suggestions?
     
  5. Scott Oliver

    Scott Oliver Screenwriter

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    It is a little behind the times right now, but a used Theta Casa Nova falls in your price range and is available in silver.

    Theta and Meridian 800 series are the only processors that are fully upgradeable.

    The Casa Nova will probably be upgraded within a year now that it looks like a digital hi-rez connection is becoming a reality.
     
  6. GordonL

    GordonL Supporting Actor

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    Another option is the B&K Ref 50. It's available in silver. It's got more features than the Rotel, plus it's upgradable. A barely used one just went for $1900 on audiogon. It's probably possible to get one new for around $2k, maybe a little more.
     
  7. Jason GT

    Jason GT Second Unit

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    Arthur, temporary sidetrack:

    How much (in loonies) are you paying for your Bryston amp? Please PM me if you don't want to disclose price over the forum.

    Thanks!
     
  8. ChrisHeflen

    ChrisHeflen Supporting Actor

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    How about the new Integra DTC 9.4?
    It's feature packed, plus adds NET-TUNE which you can playback your music files stored on your computer. It also upconverts all video to component 480i. Not too many do that. I didn't see anything about being upgradeable. And I'll stop there because I don't own one and I'm not getting paid by them. It just looks like it would be a good buy.

    http://www.integrahometheater.com/press.cfm?id=65
     
  9. Andrew Pratt

    Andrew Pratt Producer

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    You'll be able to get the Rotel 1066 in silver for about $1800 cdn but the newer 1098 is about double that price. Both are upgradeable to a point via the firmware but the horsepower of the chip in the 1066 is about maxed out already so if something requires a great deal of power it won't run on the 1066's chip. The 1098 is card based though so technically it might be possible to swap a card out to upgrade features on that should Rotel deem it worthwhile. As someone above mentioned the markets are changin quickly these days and no matter what you buy now it will likely seem dated in a couple of years time. For example expect Dolby labs to annouce its new Pro Logic IIx surround format at Cedia in Sept[​IMG] Really it comes down to two options. One is to try and buy something that's upgradeable with hopes that the company will offer an upgrade in the future to give you the features you want and at a price that makes sense or buy a more reasonable priced unit now and simply sell it and buy something more current later on. For most people I'd say the second option makes the most sense when you look at the total costs of ownership etc. That said I just ugraded from the 1055 (as a pre amp) to the 1098 and its one amazing peice of gear[​IMG]

    The anthem's another you can look at that will be in the same sort of price point as the Rotel 1098.
     
  10. JohnN

    JohnN Agent

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    Arthur,

    I am following somewhat the same path as you are; to build a reasonable home theater that I can live with for a few years without the upgrade itch.

    I picked up a used/demo 5B ST and 3B ST this spring and pondered the same preamp question for a few months.

    My next purchase was a LCD projector -- the Panasonic AE300U.

    Then, while browsing a few local equipment dealers I found a store selling their "last" Bryston SP1 asking $3,000 Canadian. It is upgradeable to an SP 1.7. I left the store to do some other shopping and to think about it

    It only took me a few minutes to decide to come back to the store and after a short time negotiating a slight price reduction I signed the deal.

    Now the REALLY difficult part ... new speakers before the end of the year.

    Regards.

    John
     

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