Intregra 7.3 vs Denon 3803

Discussion in 'AV Receivers' started by Mike_Thor, May 15, 2003.

  1. Mike_Thor

    Mike_Thor Extra

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    Guys/gals,

    Looking for some opinions on the Integra x.3 series of recievers. I have the Intregra DTR 7.3 in my scopes and hoping to get some positive feedback cause I'm going to purchase one or the other next week. There doesn't seem to be many reviews of the Integra DTR x.3 series on the web or the forums. So any insight would be greatly appreciated.

    Thanks,

    Mike
     
  2. Mike_Thor

    Mike_Thor Extra

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    36 views and no responses or opinions? [​IMG]
     
  3. RobWil

    RobWil Supporting Actor

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    Jeez, Mike.....don't know what to say but it doesn't seem like a whole lot of people own Integra's....anywhere!?! They just aren't marketed heavily which is a plus in my book as I despise most advertising strategies. I ran into the same problem trying to research a DTR-7 I just purchased off of ebay. I've seen lots of people with the 3802/3803 here though so you'd think there would be some input there.
    Just by looking at them and reading about them at the websites they appear pretty comparable...it's a tough call.
    However,
    1. I think the looks of the Integra's are awesome whereas to me the Denon's look rather plain and dull.
    2. The Denon boasts slightly higher power w/ slightly better THD, but you know how that goes. One could be overated and one could be underrated. But the Integra has better S/N ratio (110db to 102db). They are both exactly the same weight w/ the Integra's cabinet being a little larger.
    3. The NetTune looks pretty cool for the Integra.
    4. The Integra has digital upsampling whereas I don't see that as a listed feature w/ the Denon. The Integra also lists tone controls whereas the Denon doesn't list this.
    5. The Integra has THX select rating, FWIW.
    6. The Integra has a detachable power cord which is a decent feature.
    7. You may get more bass x-over options w/ the Denon.

    Based on features and looks I personally prefer the Integra.
    I own an Integra and like it very much, but without listening to each I certainly couldn't make a comparison there. Sorry I couldn't offer more but you seemed desparate so all you got was me [​IMG]
     
  4. Mike_Thor

    Mike_Thor Extra

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    Rob,

    Thanks. That was good info. I'm going to go with the Integra DTR 7.3 bought locally. I went today and listened to the Denon 3803 and while it sounded great, it was missing some of the features that the Integra has and I can get it a 'lil bit cheaper than the Denon.

    Thanks for the reply,

    Mike
     
  5. Ed Werner

    Ed Werner Stunt Coordinator

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    Mike,

    Looks like Rob got the just of it. I own a Integra DTR 8.2 (can't afford the 8.3 new) and I love it. Great reciever, awesome quality (thing weighs like 40+ lbs), very good sound (brings out details that I have never heard before in movies) decodes everything and does it well.

    The only thing that could be seen as a negative is the 80hz set low pass, but I understand that has been corrected in the X.3 models (and updates).

    I need to email Integra and see whats available as far as upgrades go.

    I am sure you will love it. It pushes my RT600i fronts CSi40 center and FXi50 rears effortlessly. Like I said, brings out details I never heard with my TXSR600.

    --Ed
     
  6. Mike_Thor

    Mike_Thor Extra

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    Ed,

    Thanks for the reply. I'm really looking forward to this reciever. But my local dealer doesn't have it in stock but will next week. He has the 6.3 in stock but I am looking to get the 7.3.

    Mike
     
  7. AravindB

    AravindB Auditioning

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    Mike,

    I am also getting a DTR-7.3 next week. I am planning to drive a RBH CT 7.1 speaker system with this. The dealer had this setup and it sounds awesome.

    Good luck to you. Let us know how it is...

    Aravind
     
  8. Mike Up

    Mike Up Second Unit

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    I have the Denon AVR-3803. It doesn't have the internet MP3 thingy that the Onkyo TX-DS900(Integra is the clone of this with a few components upgraded to offer higher tolerances). In my opinion, if you listen to the degraded performance of MP3s, why are you even bothering with a higher end receiver. Just go with a cheap $300 receiver since you've already lost the performance of the recording converting it to MP3.

    Over all, I wouldn't own an Onkyo. Others will disagree but they have changed their design extremely to offer less. One biggy was starting with the lower line receivers taking away the dedicated 5.1 analog input and 'merging' that stand alone input with the DVD analog audio input, to create the now DVD 5.1 input. This is of great degradation since it no longer offers a 5.1 analog input that can be used with any video input. That 5.1 analog input is now part of the DVD input and can't be used with other video inputs. A shame that Onkyo implemented this design that's been used in ultra low end receivers since DD5.1 was conceived. Low end Technics, Sony, Sherwood, Kenwood, Pioneer, KLH, Aiwa, Panasonic, and Teac use this cheaper design. Denon, Yamaha, HK, Pioneer Elite, NAD, Marantz, B&K, Rotel, Sunfire, and Sony ES use a "DEDICATED" 5.1 / 6.1/ 7.1 analog input that can be shared with all the video inputs. This is especially important if these analog multichannel inputs are to be used with a dedicated processor for Circle Surround, SACD, or other specialty multichannel formats.

    Also Sound and Vision did a test on the Onkyo 900 and it's power output was anemic! This was an intentional design to keep heat output down according to S&V. Without the current limiter cutting the power down, S&V measure 101 watts with 5 channel driven (for a couple of second before the limiter kicked in) but it declined to less than half that with current limiting. I can't remember the actual multichannel power output results but they were pathetic and S&V had to make excuses for the 900's sub-par, below average power output. This is just another great example how THX means squat. This receiver outputted anemic power but THX licensed it, pathetic.

    By comparison, in the latest issue of S&V, they just reviewed the Denon AVR-2803. I've never read such a glowing review from S&V. Highlights were high power output in multichannel and super low noise at the theoretical limit. 5 channels driven was ~83 watts and 6 channels was ~75watts. The receiver is rated at only 90watts with 2 channels driven(although S&V states that rating is only with one channel driven). Being this receiver is only $800, S&V concluded it was a very higher performer for a very low buck and a bargain.

    The 3803 adds AL24 which is 24 bit digital signal up-conversion, video up-conversion, multi-room video, LCD remote, pure direct mode, discrete blocks in the processor, and numerous other upgrades including power output. I've had my 3803 since November and am still impressed by it's exceptional performance.

    Of course this is just my opinion as there are many who like the 'newer' Onkyos. I liked the older Onkyo design, I just wouldn't own a newer Onkyo receiver, but that's just me.

    Do your own research, and your own listening audition and come to your own opinion.

    Good luck.[​IMG]
     
  9. Tom Camlioglu

    Tom Camlioglu Stunt Coordinator

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    Well ... I'll take the opposite of the above post. I've owned Denon in the past (5700-5800) and believe it or not, my DTR 8.3 sounds a lot better than my 5800 did.

    In my opinion Denon hasn't kept up with "refining" the sound on their receivers, at least from the flagship point, they all sound flat and dull to me.

    And don't let that "lower wattage" thing get to you ... it's part B/S as is anything else - the 7.3 should be more than capable ...

    BUT ... do some auditioning and decide for yourself.
     
  10. Ed Werner

    Ed Werner Stunt Coordinator

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    At 130w/channel, I think my Integra 8.2 is plenty. I can't stand to turn it past 60 and only then just once. The Integra series have alot more juice then their Onkyo counterparts. And it does put off the heat so keep it well ventilated.

    I understand the point that Onkyo has watered down their low end units, but Integra and Integra Research IMO are much better build quality and better sounding in general. Total difference.

    --Ed
     
  11. StephenL

    StephenL Second Unit

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  12. Ed Werner

    Ed Werner Stunt Coordinator

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    Honestly, I could care less.

    To me this point is mute. The reciever runs my speakers without any distortion, fade or clipping of high freq. or otherwise any problems. Why people put down the Onkyo line when it has proven itself is beyond me. I have never personally experienced any problems associated with this "low wattage" problem, and I AM dissapointed that there is hype around how they rate their recievers BUT I again say, it works, it works great for MY setup, so whats it really matter?

    And just because two people are the same weight tells nothing about them. Book by its cover, right? It is suspect that they weight the same though.
     
  13. RobWil

    RobWil Supporting Actor

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    ahh.....but there IS a difference! Many of the Integra's have detachable power cords, plus when you register them you get a nifty luggage tag and pen! [​IMG] Woo hoo!

    I went from an Onkyo 797 to an Integra DTR 7 (NOT the 7.1).
    Every spec was identical except the Integra spec'ed at 105wpc x 5 vs 100wpc x6. Weight was identical but if I remember the Integra was deeper dimension-wise....same height and width however.
    I might also add that I have demoed Denon, Yamaha, Onkyo, Integra, Kenwood and Harman Kardon and I certainly did not notice any absence of power in the Onkyo/Integra's, comparatively speaking.
     
  14. Mike Up

    Mike Up Second Unit

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    Thought I'd chime in again. In most situations, the power output would not show problems because even 40 watts RMS can be loud when you add in the dynamic peaks. If the program sound track isn't demanding, you'll most likely never hear clipping. It's only on the demanding sound tracks, when turned up loud, when the lower power will be shown. Simply saying, half power output while using multichannel configurations is appalling, to at least me.

    While few receivers meet their 2 channel driven spec while driving all channels, there's a few that have been poor. Unfortunately, Onkyo's models have been the most noted and proven by Sound and Vision's tests(although I do think they're tests are flawed but there's nothing flawed when a current limiter is tripped by design). S&V has also reviewed past Integra models with the same poor showings, very low power output into multichannels. S&V has always made comments, or at least round about, how this low power output on all integra and Onkyo models reviewed, were results of current limiting. IMO, there's no reason why Onkyo needs to allow this limit, by design, when most other receivers can output high wattage without problem. Look at the $500 Kenwood receiver at 92 watts with 6 channels driven and Technics $400 model with over 70 watts with 6 channels driven.

    Lower power doesn't mean it won't sound good and that it clips all the time. It may never show it's flaw under many sound tracks.

    At $1000 it should at least act like a $1000 receiver and not like a $400 and $500 receiver.That's all I'm saying and older Onkyo receivers never had inadequate power(comparing to others in and near their price class). In fact Onkyo lower end models like the 575 actually had more power into 5 channels driven than their own 2 channel driven ratings.

    Hope Onkyo goes back to their roots and doesn't turn into a Circuit City, mediocre receiver line.
     
  15. RobWil

    RobWil Supporting Actor

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    I guess it's a mute point for me since I am currently using separate amplification for all channels.... due to my ebay addiction I've got power amps up the gazzonka (an old parental term)[​IMG] . However, it boggles my mind that a receiver weighing in at around 38lbs would have performance issues amp-wise compared to some of these 25lb receivers costing a third as much. I personally believe it's a bunch of hogwash and I wouldn't put any more faith in S&V than I would in Consumer Reports.
     
  16. Mark LP

    Mark LP Agent

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    Mike_Thor,

    I think you will love your new Integra. They are one of the most neutral sounding receivers on the market. The power per channel issue is just talk. Listen and be amazed. The nice thing about a THX select receiver is that it has the same decoding chips as the THX ultra. The THX ultra designation is for the amp rating based on room size. If you feel that you need more power, add an external amp.

    Mark
     
  17. Lewis Besze

    Lewis Besze Producer

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  18. RobWil

    RobWil Supporting Actor

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    Well! That was an extremely intelligent and helpful post. Thank you for your well thought out and fact filled contribution.
     
  19. Lewis Besze

    Lewis Besze Producer

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    You're most welcome![​IMG]
     

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