Mid / Entry-Level (but upgradeable) Receiver...6.1 & DPLII

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by Jack_Geo, Jan 29, 2002.

  1. Jack_Geo

    Jack_Geo Stunt Coordinator

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    I need a receiver to drive a set of Axiom M2TiSe speakers...the M2's in front & back (and rear center), a VP50 front center and the EP-125 sub.

    I'd like this receiver to be upgradeable, and my only criteria is that it must have 6.1 capability and have Dolby Pro Logic II.

    I've listened to a bunch, from the Denon 2802/3802, the Onkyo 797, the Yamaha RX-V1200, and the Marantz 5200/6200.

    I like the way they all sound, actually, and the prices in the same ballpark for the comparable models.

    What I'm wondering is if there's anything that some of you can recommend that sets one or more of these receivers apart from another aside from the price / sound issues.

    I really like the looks of the new Yamaha that's coming out (the RX-V730, I think) but don't know if I can wait that long. The Yamaha customer service rep said May or June. *sigh*

    Anyway, your comments and / or suggestions are most welcome!
     
  2. Eujin

    Eujin Supporting Actor

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    I'm in the same boat as you are and here's what I've found:

    Those are all great receivers that you're looking at--assuming that by "upgradeable" you mean that they have pre-amp outputs. Also, Marantz has suffered a bit of a black eye with the x200 series due to quality control problems (other than that, they are great sounding receivers). The other thing you need to consider is whether or not adjustable crossovers are important to you. The Denons have adjustable settings for the crossover, but the Yamaha does not. Not sure about the 797, but I think it has a fixed crossover as well (probably to get THX Select status). The only receivers I would add to your consideration would be the Harman/Kardon AVR 520 and 320. They have pre-amp outputs for 7.1 channels (but amplification for 5 only) and more digital audio inputs (and outputs, if you care about those). Power ratings on these two receivers are VERY conservative. The only negative is that they have a "plastic-ky" feel, as the face plate and volume knob is made of plastic. But if you're like me and do most of your functions from the remote, that shouldn't bother you too much. I think the HKs have a better remote than the others too. Oh, and they're a bit cheaper than the others.

    Good luck with the decision!
     
  3. Jack_Geo

    Jack_Geo Stunt Coordinator

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    Eujin:

    Thanks for the reply. I considered the H/K's, but am dead set on 6.1, for better or for worse!

    I'd like pre-amp outputs, but if the price was right, I suppose I could do without...perhaps the Yamaha 5490?

    Variable crossover is somewhat important, but not a show-stopper.

    Right now I'm still up in the air...I'd really like to see what that new Yamaha has, but if I can't wait, I suppose it'll be the Denon or the Marantz...roll the dice with the quality control issues.

    So...I guess I'm back to my original question. Anyone else care to comment?
     
  4. Randy Schissler

    Randy Schissler Stunt Coordinator

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    Although I haven't received it yet, I just ordered the Onkyo 797.

    The last couple weeks I've been faced with the situation of trying to decide between the Denon 3802 and Onkyo 797. In a way they are quite similar but have differences. I had been leaning towards the Denon 3802, and wanted to get the Denon, but I suprised myself and flipped, and got the Onkyo 797. The main reasons were: I can't stand the Denon remote and I love the Onkyo remote. Also, after spending a lot of time reading the manuals on the internet, I really like the various volume control setup options on the 797, and being able to temporarily change the speaker levels on the fly (sometimes when watching a DVD I feel the need to raise/lower the center/subwoofer speakers). I didn't see these features in the Denon manual.

    What concerns me about the Onkyo is the amplifier power with five channels driven. I subscribe to Sound andVision Magazine and in the last year they have reviewed the Denon 3801, and Onkyo 696. While they haven't reviewed the Denon 3802 and Onkyo797, I think you can make assumptions based on the sister models. To me, the lab tests show the Denon to have superior power, especially with five channels driven. On the Onkyo 696, with five channels driven, there is a big drop off in output power. While in a real world listening experience this may not be a concern, I think it could be when listening to intense DTS/DD DVD passages, five channel music from DPLII mode, or five channel stereo music. The Denon has 7.1 and the Onkyo has 6.1, but they both have preouts for 7.1. With preouts, if more power was needed you could connect a dedicated amplifier to take some of the load off the reciever, and it would be better too. While I can't imagine going beyond 5.1, who knows what the future will bring. While the Onkyo 696 and 797 are both rated as 100wpc, if you look at the specs, the 797 has more power. The Denon is slightly higher.

    The Onkyo has high bandwidth HDTV component inputs (the Denon has lower bandwidth), which I probably wouldn't use as I would rather connect direct to the TV.

    I like the looks of the Onkyo 797 faceplate a little better than the Denon, except for the ugly input jacks on the front, which I would never use.

    As far as the subwoofer crossover, the Onkyo is set to 80Hz, which is what most people would want anyway. I think the Denon is 80,100, or 120Hz.

    The only thing I know about the Yamaha is that I think the remote is limited.

    The only thing I know about the Marantz is that the SR7200 got a bad review in Sound and Vision, Nov. 2001. High noise level and very weak power with five/six channels driven.

    Randy S.
     
  5. Eujin

    Eujin Supporting Actor

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    There've been a number of reports of Marantz receivers "bursting into flames" that I've come across, along with less severe but no less annoying problems like S-video noise, humming sounds from the speakers, etc. I can't tell you how disappointed I was to hear this, as the new Marantz line is very attractively priced to me, and I've listened to the 5200 in detail and find it a wonderful sounding piece of equipment.

    Randy, I think you'll be very happy with the 797--the fixed 80hz crossover is pretty much average. If I was going to spend a little more, I'm sure I'd pick the 797 too. I find that Onkyo receivers are really solid all-around performers, with lots of power to spare in real-world conditions. I'm currently living with an old 484 and it has no problems driving my system (Paradigm Monitor 5s, Atoms and CC-170). Unless you have VERY inefficient speakers or a gigantic room, the 797 should be more than enough. Total agreement on the looks too--the Onkyo is gorgeous in a solid yet elegant way.
     
  6. Randy Schissler

    Randy Schissler Stunt Coordinator

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    Just to clarify the subwoofer crossover for the Denon 3802, what I meant to say was that you can "choose" either 80, 100, or 120Hz. The default is 80Hz.

    --Randy S.
     
  7. Stefan_Fuhrmann

    Stefan_Fuhrmann Auditioning

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    i'm also searching for a receiver with DolbyProLogicII and 6.1 (with 6 amplifier-channels), but a very important feature for me is a 6.1-input. anyone got an idea, which receiver would suit for my needs? (i know the yamaha 630 or 730 will do, but waiting till march or even may/june ???)

    thanks

    Stefan
     
  8. Guy_C

    Guy_C Auditioning

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    As regards the SR7200 Sound and Vision review - isn't it about time people accepted this for what it was - a defective unit which resulted in a shoddy piece of journalism - and one which has resulted in the widespread slating of a very good line.

    I've owned a 7200 for 2 weeks now - and have NONE of the dreaded and oft-reported issues. My feeling is that a lot of people who've never even come within 100ft of a 7200 (or, indeed, the entire x200 range) are now picking up what was at best a dubious baton and running with it.

    Please - if you have direct experience of a fault or issue, then please comment. Otherwise you're not helping anyone by perpetuating the myth that all x200's are duff and to be avoided. This is patently not the truth.

    For the record, there don't seem to be any established issues with the x200 range in the UK.
     
  9. MatthewJ S

    MatthewJ S Supporting Actor

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    I sell both the yam & the denon(etc.) find them both to be great...the 1200 is tough to beat right now and while I too am waiting on more info on the 730, it doesn't look like its going to be on the same level as the 1200. The remote for the 1200 is learning and has a small lcd display to tell you what unit your controling and seems to function well enough, good luck....
     
  10. Eujin

    Eujin Supporting Actor

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    Matthew,

    I love the 1200--I just wish it had an adjustable crossover, as this is one of the reasons I'm looking to upgrade. Right now, the most attractive option for me is looking like a H/K 320 because of its price vs. feature-set ratio. Still, I can't really bring myself to pull the trigger yet...
     
  11. Larry Chanin

    Larry Chanin Stunt Coordinator

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    Mid / Entry-Level (but upgradeable) Receiver...6.1 & DPLII
    Hi Jack:
    Just a brief comment about your upgradeable requirement.
    Your response to Eujin's assumption has me a little puzzled.
     
  12. Bill cc

    Bill cc Agent

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    I've looked at all those receivers too and came to the conclusion that I'm going to get the Yamaha rx-v1200.

    I was going to wait for the new Yamaha rx-v730, but I'm not sure when its going to come out and I doubt it will be any better than the 1200 .

    Im not getting Harman Karmon because neither model has PHONO in, and the unit does seem to have cheap looks.

    The Denons' have less video inputs and a bad remote with those slider switches that I hate.

    The Onkyos were the closest call. I just liked the Yamaha's looks (clean front with concealing door) and remote (LCD) more.

    The Yamaha also has the highest HDTV component video bandwidth, and most soundfields.
     
  13. Dan Joy

    Dan Joy Supporting Actor

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    The yamaha rxv-1200 can be had for mid 600 at etronics.

    Go get it!
     
  14. MatthewJ S

    MatthewJ S Supporting Actor

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    Or for about $799 from a local, authorized, supportive, dealer
     
  15. Kyle_Y

    Kyle_Y Stunt Coordinator

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    I was in the middle of the same debate, 797, 3802, 2802, and 1200. The 797 eventually won. I listened to all of the at the same store through the same setup. The 2802 was out. The 1200 seemed a little less powerful than the others. the 3802 and 797 were close. The 797 sounded much better in stereo. I was a little worried, but my dealer said that I would be able to return if I didn't like what I heard at home so I went with the 797. I took it home, played some soft stereo for a few hours, then proceded to cranking it. I did it with the chase scene of Gone in 60 seconds and the attack scene in Pearl Harbor. Dang, that thing can dish it out. I am driving two refrence 4ohm A/D/S towers infront which would constantly put my Pioneer into protection(thus the upgrade). The surround envelopment is great and The Denon may have seven channels but if you don't need all 7, the Onkyo will yield better sound IMO and much better stereo sound...and if you look inside the 797 it's transformer is about twice the size of the one in the 696 and the THX certification guarantees a stable steady power supply if you are still not convinced by sheer numbers. I would though say that in the end, you can't really go wrong with the 797, 3802 or 1200, all great products, good luck!
     
  16. Eujin

    Eujin Supporting Actor

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    Kyle is right--the 797, 3802 and 1200 are all great receivers. The only perceptible differences in SOUND between those 3 will come down to personal preference. I just pulled the trigger this afternoon on a H/K AVR320 because I got a VERY sweet deal on it. Sure, the cosmetics make me want to heave, but I'm going to be spending more time eyeballing my Tosh 50H81 [​IMG]
    I also got it from an authorized dealer, so if I'm not happy with it, I can return it within the accepted policy window. From the listening I've done on it over the last weekend, I'm pretty sure I'll be happy with it. Besides, it's got 7.1 pre-amp outputs so I'm pretty well-covered for the foreseeable future. If this thread continues, I'll post my in-home reactions for any who are interested. The 320 should arrive at my doorstep on Monday.
     
  17. Kelly Scott Rickards

    Kelly Scott Rickards Stunt Coordinator

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  18. Jack_Geo

    Jack_Geo Stunt Coordinator

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    Thank you to all who responded...I don't know if I'm any closer to making a decision, but I am much more well-informed and certainly value the opinions expressed in this thread. Like they say on TV..."The more you know..."

    Some return questions...

    Kelly: Do you have any definite release dates for the two Yamahas or the Pioneer? The article you originally posted about the Yamahas said March, I believe...but their customer service rep said possibly June.

    Larry: My response on the "upgradeable" question was really aimed at the pre-amp out vs. no pre-amp out, not the ability to upgrade signal processing options. In fact, when I wrote the response I was thinking specifically along the lines of the Yamaha RX-V1200 vs. the Yamaha HTR-5490 (I think that's the comparable receiver in that line). The 1200 does, the 5490 does not.

    MatthewJ: Do you have any more specific information / specs on the new Yamahas?

    Thanks again!

    Jack
     
  19. MatthewJ S

    MatthewJ S Supporting Actor

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    I just received yamaha's newest lit. on the 1200 and 2200 and I am not that thrilled about what little it tells me.I already new every fact that they revealed except one...and I have been playing with it quite a bit mostly alternating it between a KLIPSCH Ref package and a Mirage set-up...VERY pleased...I can't comment on the advantages of it over the (as yet unheard) 730 but I suspect some quality differances...If you are going to use any of these units as a pre-amp then I don't know because most manufacturers don't include performance specs on the pre-out section of their receivers (because as many techs fom these companies have told me "they suck" when compared to stand alone pre-amps). I do love the performance advantages of seperate amps, however, and if you are goingto eventually get a real pre-amp ,then by all means just by the cheap receiver with all the features,this way you'll waste less money...
     
  20. Kelly Scott Rickards

    Kelly Scott Rickards Stunt Coordinator

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    I found 2 more VERY CHEAP 6 channel recievers from sherwood:
    http://www.hometheaterforum.com/htforum/showthread.php?s=&threadid=43101
    And here is a (albiet small) picture of the RX-V730
    [​IMG]
    Furthermore, the RX-V730 has the same Yamaha YSS-938 DSP chip that does the decoding on the RX-V1200 along with the entire 2003 line (of which, the economies of scale is probably why the new Yamaha's are cheaper in the first place)
    If anything, the RX-V1200/HTR-5490 should give you a sneek peek at the RX-V730 and at least give you some idea of what to expect...
     

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