Marantz 8200

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by Wayne McRae, Dec 21, 2001.

  1. Wayne McRae

    Wayne McRae Stunt Coordinator

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    Has anyone had a chance to listen to this yet? It just arrived in Canada and won't be set up for a little while.

    Thanx Wayne
     
  2. Phil M

    Phil M Stunt Coordinator

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    I just purchased a 8200 yesterday and I'm mixed. There were a couple factors that really drew me to to the 8200, one being the remote, and another being Marantz's reputation for music reproduction, and the RS 232 port for future upgrades. I figured that I may have to give up some HT ability for great music sound.

    Well, this is why I'm mixed. I've had a chance to watch a couple DVD's (in DD) and they were WONDERFUL! I've also played around with PL2 with some laserdiscs, and they too were great. It beats my old Denon 3300 hands down. Sound was very dynamic and enveloping, it just really drew you in and surrounded you. It had a very full and smooth sound even at very loud levels. I was greatly surprised!

    I've also had a chance to listen to various CD's that I am very familiar with. I've done so in both stereo mode as well as multiple DSP modes including PL2 music. This is where I'm not satisfied. There is just too much bass, it sounds unatural. I have the sub calibrated at 83-84 and the rest of the channels at 75. With some modes it sounds as though the center channel should be backed down as well.

    Part of the problem is the inability to set channel levels, you CAN NOT select or adjust individual channel levels (for the most part). In the main set-up you select large/small (80 hz crossover)and yes/no sub, then you go into the test tones page to adjust the levels WHILE the tones are playing (universally for all surround modes).

    You do not have the ability to adjust individual channels by themselves without the test tones playing! And once adjusted you cannot adjust them via input? I couldn't believe it. I guess I was spoiled by my previous Denon(s) because I had the ability to set individual channel levels for each source and it would remember each setting. On music modes from my CD player I would lower the sub levels, and for digital inputs I would have the LFE at another setting, and then for signals coming from my replay, I would again bump up the sub level some, and sometimes decrease the center level.

    The above is impossible with the 8200 I have.

    I'm also wondering if a software upgrade is possible to correct this. In the main menu there is a "surround" menu where you can scroll throught the various DSP modes, but it doesn't give you the ability to adjust the sub level for the majority of them. Out of all of the surround modes, you can only adjust the sub output for DTS Cinema, and DTS music. In all of the other modes, PL2, PL, THX, Circle Surround, NEO 6, etc...you can't adjust the level of the center of sub, you can only select Re-EQ on or off? Is this a MAJOR oversite or am I missing something?

    It is impossible to use say an Avia disc to set levels for your DVD and/or LD inputs.

    The only music mode that I think sounds good is the "direct source" setting as it bypasses the sub and sends full range signals to my Studio 40's. In stereo mode you cannot turn the sub off unless you go into the main menu, and select no for sub, and then change front speakers to large, which then becomes the default setting for ALL modes and inputs.

    Lastly, I'm really disappointed in the remote. It is not intuitive at all and is VERY hard to read unless you leave the backlighting on all of the time. It seems that you really have to scroll all over the place to select sources or change DSP modes. There also is no software for it, nor any library of codes to use, so the only thing that it will control is the amp & tuner at this time. I think the software is suppose to come out next month, this may give the ability to fix some of the remote issues.

    There is one thing that I really like about the remote, it is 2 way, you can press a button and it shows you the current volume setting, the video and audio input, the surround mode, and various other info.

    I just don't know if it is going to be a keeper or not?

    Any thoughts, or am I just being overly "nit-picky"

    I thought you could at least adjust channel levels on all receivers?

    Phil
     
  3. Jason Au

    Jason Au Extra

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    Phil,

    are you sure that it's not possible to set channel levels without the test tones? On my marantz 5200 there's a menu item called 'channel levels' or something like that so you can adjust individual channels without hearing the tones.
     
  4. Phil M

    Phil M Stunt Coordinator

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    I've looked everywhere. I really wish someone else with one of these would correct me. I REALLY wanted this receiver!

    Here is my menu:

    1. input setup

    2. Speaker setup

    3. Preference

    4. Surround

    5. Pro Logic 2

    6. Multi room

    7. 7.1 CH in

    8. DC trig setup

    Under Speaker setup it goes to page 2.1 (Speaker size) where I have to choose THX speaker system or not, then sub, yes or no, then front,center,surround L/R, surr back, surr back size.

    It then goes to 2.2, Speakers distance (self explanatory)

    Then 2.3 Speaker level. Here my only choice is auto or manual. If I choose manual it just sits there until I press down on the remote, it then starts the test tones on the Front L. If I choose auto, it automatically advances to the Front L and starts playing the tones for so many seconds, then advances on to the next. Any adjustments that I make here are universal to all modes AND inputs except the ones I listed above.

    Last is 2.4 Bass Peak level (self explanatory)

    If I go in under 4, Surround, I get a page that lets me scroll through the different surround modes, and then select the following:

    Cinema RE-EQ on/off

    LFE level *** db

    Surr l/r effect *** db

    surr back effect *** db

    center effect *** db

    sub w effect *** db

    The problem is, I can only chose Cinema RE-EQ, It won't let you select or adjust the LFE channel unless you are in one of the few modes that I listed above. If the field has three *** in front, I have no options.

    To me this would be the perfect place for a person to go through each surround mode and adjust thier center, sub, etc. It just won't let you do it. And it really doesn't have a l/r or center adjustment, just "effects".

    Any more suggestions?

    Phil
     
  5. Pete Jennings

    Pete Jennings Second Unit

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    Phil, in the manual for the SR-8200, page 31, left column - bottom under the "Effect Level" section there is a note. It states:
    Note: These effect level set up are available only while in HALL, MATRIX, MOVIE, Multi CH. STEREO.
    That would explain why you couldn't change it there. Channel levels aren't an issue for me, I calibrate with a SPL meter and just leave things as they are. I have friends who love to manually adjust these settings on the fly, so I understand where you are coming from. I wonder if one of the screens on the remote would accomplish this? I would suggest you email Chow Padkee at Marantz Support ( [email protected] ) for answers.
    As for the remote, I am not making any final judgements on it until the SW is released later this month. I have a Home Theater Master MX-500, and am not a fan of the touch screen jobs at all. I have a friend who has a Pronto, and the contrast on the 3200 Marantz remote is comparable (made by same company). I had a Sony ES receiver briefly a few years ago with the two-way touch screen remote, and can state the Marantz has MUCH better contrast capability.
    The two channel music complaints you have can probably be corected by taking the unit out of Direct Mode. I prefer Direct Mode, music seems to come alive!
    Best of luck with your 8200, and Merry Christmas!
    Pete
     
  6. Phil M

    Phil M Stunt Coordinator

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    Pete:

    Thanks for the address. I did send an e-mail to see if a software upgrade could correct this.

    From what I can gather, the lower X200 models, and the higher SR models have the ability, I just don't understand why the 8200 doesn't, unless it was just an oversight.

    I didn't think that there were any receivers that wouldn't let you adjust channel levels.

    I'll post the reply if I get one.

    Phil
     
  7. Steve_Ma

    Steve_Ma Second Unit

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    I was frustrated by the same issue (on last years SR7000), when I was trying to adjust my sub for music vs HT. I called and ended up speaking with Chow who did not have an answer right then and there.. I emailed him my question. I also emailed him a 3-4 days later asking if he got my first email, could I could provide additional info, was there an answer, etc?. No response. Thanks Chow.

    It doesn't seem to make sense that you 1st have to calibrate the CH levels in the speaker setup, but after that, individual channel level changes in other DSP modes carry over to other DSP modes. So if I adjust my sub down for STEREO use, I have also adjusted it down for DD/DTS material and undone my calibration. For some reason, 5ch stereo is an exception.

    On a positive note, placement tweaks gave me some improvement. I've also talked with 2 friends this weekend who also have the same issue with other AV recs. From what I've read, it seems like not that many people are adjusting CH levels for various DSP modes.

    Anyway, I'll follow up with this thread if/when I get a response from Marantz on this.

    --Steve
     
  8. Tom_Mack

    Tom_Mack Stunt Coordinator

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    I have had the Marantz SR-8200 for a little over a week now (my speakers are all from the Paradigm Monitor series.)

    I also wish that the 8200 had the ability to set different surround/sub levels for each mode, but the pros far outweigh the cons on this receiver. The sound is outstanding! Much better than anything else I have heard under $2000. I can deal with the minor inconveniences if I have a superior output.

    As for the remote, I like it now and I believe I will love it when the software is released. My only disappointment with the remote is that you have to be in amp mode to set the volume. I'd like to be able to set the speaker volume when I have the DVD remote screen on! For some reason, I am also having trouble getting the remote to learn the signal to set my RCA TV to Video mode.

    To set the speaker levels using AVIA, I first set the levels using the Marantz internal test tones, then went through all the tones in AVIA without adjusting. I just took note of any changes I needed to make. After making the changes, I rechecked AVIA and everything was fine. Its not the easiest way of setting channel levels, but it is no reason in my opinion to return a wonderful sounding receiver!

    Lets just hope that Marantz realizes that there are some concerns and fixes them with a software release!
     
  9. ChrisDixon

    ChrisDixon Second Unit

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    One thing that I'm still not quite clear on: are you talking about not being able to set different channel levels by MODE or by SOURCE? My SR-7000 allows me to set different channel levels by source. There is a separate menu (other than the test tones) that allows me to set each channel for the current source that I'm using. Is this no longer the case with the 8200/9200? With my 7000, I rarely use modes other than Auto and Auto-Source Direct, so setting by mode doesn't interest me that much.

    Just curious,

    Chris
     
  10. Steve_Ma

    Steve_Ma Second Unit

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    In my case I am talking about MODE. Since I use my DVD/CD player as my transport for both music and movies, I have no need for other sources.

    --S
     
  11. Phil M

    Phil M Stunt Coordinator

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    I did end up returning my 8200. I also informed my dealer that I may be interested later if Marantz is able to fix the problems I noted above. I guess I'm just too picky, but I would expect a $1500 receiver to at least give you the ability to adjust channel levels (sub anyway).

    Today (Thursday) I received a call at home from a Marantz rep. (Kevin) He said that he received my e-mail and wanted to confirm exactly what I expected the receiver to do.

    He said that yes, the channel levels can be individually set, without the use of test tones, and he was going through the menu of a 9200 that he had in front of him to walk me through it. It then got quiet, and he said that he would call me back in 5 minutes, which he did.

    He then said that there does seem to be some type of oversight. He said that the reciver is suppose to be able to, just like all of thier other recievers, but for some reason the 8200 & 9200 don't have the ability.

    He also said that he was hoping that it could be corrected in a software update, but he would have to look into it more as well as contact Japan???

    I then inquired if Marantz intended the receiver to have the ability to set different custom levels either by input, or by DSP mode. He said that it is suppose to be by MODE. He said that they recognize that many people use thier DVD players as CD players, so source just won't work for most.

    He also agreed that if I set the receiver up for HT use, music wouldn't sound that good. He said that I should be able to set different sub levels for different MODES.

    He said that he would get back in touch with me as a follow-up, but he didn't think that it would be until after the first of the year.

    I'll post when he does.

    Phil
     
  12. Steve_Ma

    Steve_Ma Second Unit

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    Thanks for the update Phil.

    I guess that explains why I haven't gotten a call or returned email back yet. I'm glad to hear that they regognize this is a shortcomig in the unit. I hope you end up with a good unit. As for myself.....I found that tweaking with the placement and recalibrating helped a great deal. I'm still very happy with my SR7000 for both audio and HT, despite this annoyance. It's a great unit that puts out clean power to my speakers. But, I agree with your statement...a $1500 dollar AV REC should be able to do this. It's a shame, but my next AV rec might not be a Marantz unless this and the QC issues get worked out.

    --Steve
     
  13. ChrisAG

    ChrisAG Supporting Actor

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    One has to wonder what the hell is going on at Marantz these days. Aside from that inexcusable shortcoming of the 8200, the lower x200 units suffer from widespread problems: charge buildup in Mute circuit leading to popping every 20 minutes if you change the input source or change the volume, audio dropouts when using a digital input source, and the S-video interference. And 'repaired' s-video exhibits sync problems with bright scenes - some owners of the earlier SR-19EX and SR-7000 have reported this problem.

    Is the Marantz Quality Assurance dept. short staffed? Are their designers out to lunch? Are the bean counters in charge, insisting on cheap parts and labour? Probably all of the above.
     
  14. Steve K.H.

    Steve K.H. Supporting Actor

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    BUMP! [​IMG]
    I'm bringing this up cuz there were concerns with levels. Additionally, a rep for Marantz was to call in the new year. I compared the SR8200 with the XSDS 898 from Onkyo and the 8200 has these three items over the 898...
    Touch Screen Remote (some love, some hate)
    Ability to upgrade software (I can't believe the 898 doesn't!)
    and Circle Surround 5.1 (this is MILES better than Pro-Logic Two, and this would be very important with my Digital Cable connection).
    Any thoughts? I can actually pick one up for the same price as the 898.
    (fire away!) [​IMG]
     
  15. JonathanJ

    JonathanJ Auditioning

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    I've got a question for those guys with this receiver. I too have been frustrated by the fact that the speaker levels cannot be changed on the fly without the annoying testtones coming on. I also found that the receiver can either work for home theater or for music, but not for both. I know this view is shared by many who own this receiver. Just a thought. Would it be possible to create a macro to automatically adjust the speaker levels specifically for HT, and then another macro for music. I haven't really looked into this too far. I guess its really not a question, just a suggestion.

    Also, the other night i tried to watch a DVD in DTS. I went through the menu system on the DVD and selected DTS, then i selected auto on the receiver. However, it still showed Dolby Digital on the receiver display. When i manually selected DTS on the receiver, there was no sound. Am I doing something stupid here?? Thanks for the help.

    Jonathan
     
  16. Steve_Ma

    Steve_Ma Second Unit

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    Jonathan,
    As far as no sound when playing DTS, make sure your DVD is set up correctly. I seem to recall having difficulty with this when I first hooked up my DVD player.
    My SR7000 only plays test tones when I am in the speaker setup. Do the test tones come on every time you change a ch level in any mode? I'm not sure if thats really cool or really stupid.
    I have been doing alot of thinking on the whole channel issue and how it relates to HT vs Audio. I am not very happy with Marantz's response to my inquiries but....I can see where there might be a point here.....Bear with me on this. There is a good deal of supposition here, but I think it makes sense.
    Think of it this way: The goal for many music and HT enthusiasts is an "accurate" reproduction of the material. Of course, we will customize to taste and this is where is would be nice to be able to make some ch adjustmets in different modes. BUT....Many purist are more concerned with hearing the movie, music, whatever, AS IT WAS INTENDED. To the best of their system and speakers' capabilities anyway. I think this might have been what Marantz had in mind. Set up a system where you calibrate once and forget it. regardless of the material. They claim it was intentionally designed this way though they never indicated why [​IMG]. So, When we calibrate, we are setting up all speakers to put out the same SPLs at a given volume. In theory, assuming we have the correct setups/x-overs/phase settings and etc, and we haven't messed with the tone controls....we should be getting as accurate a reproduction as our system and rooms will allow. Right? For me, this means, that I DO NOT need to adjust my bass down for music as I suspected. What I need to do is EQ out some room induced boominess...or get a better sub. [​IMG]
    ...But then why have ch adjustments in any modes at all? I guess I that blows that theory.
     
  17. JonathanJ

    JonathanJ Auditioning

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    Good point steve,

    In my particular situation, i setup the testtones in DPL2 for listening to music CD's, and everything is great. In my personal opinion i have just the right amount of background music as compared to sound from the fronts. Now, lets say that i want to watch a TV show in DPL2. Once I switch inputs from the DVD to the TV, I get way to much sound out of the rear channels. Its very annoying because i can not hear anything from the fronts.

    So I was thinking that I could create two macros that would automatically adjust the channel levels, one for music, and the other for TV. Bye bye annoying test tones.

    I will check into the setup of the DVD player. All I can add is that its the lowest model sony from about 2 years ago, nothing real special. I haven't looked through the setup of the actual DVD player itself. Thanks for the info.

    Jonathan
     
  18. Yee-Ming

    Yee-Ming Producer

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    I just took delivery of mine (SR8200, that is).

    is there a separate manual for the remote control (the 3200)? the manual for the 8200 has several pages on the 3200, but states "Please look at the user guide of the RC3200A for operation instructions." I'm wondering if this refers to a separate user guide, or are they referring to the pages in the manual relating to the 3200? I haven't found another manual anywhere in all the paper, plastic and styrofoam...

    reading the 8200 manual, e.g. under "Learning Commands" it states that "If an IR code or a brand in not in the database", but I don't see a database anywhere, nor any listing of brands etc in the manual itself. I'm assuming that they're doing things similar to my Yamaha HTiB, which had a long list of brands and codes to punch into the remote to automatically set it control other equipment (worked fine, BTW). is there a similar list for the Marantz? it's a lot easier to punch in a code telling the remote what TV you have, rather than programming each function.
     
  19. charles_w

    charles_w Stunt Coordinator

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    Yee,

    The Rc3200 does not have a list of pre-progamed codes. You have to use the learning function. If you look on Remotecentral.com you might find the codes you need.

    Lee
     
  20. Yee-Ming

    Yee-Ming Producer

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    thanks Charles for clearing that up.

    sigh, looks like I'll have to teach the damn thing all the codes it needs. funny, that, an HTiB has a remote where you just punch in a 4-digit code to tell it what TV/VCR/sat. tuner box you have, and it works! easy peasy. whilst a pricey receiver costing twice the entire HTiB has a fancy remote which can learn just about anything, but doesn't have an easy short cut to configure it.
     

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