new receiver or separates?

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by Todd_Kam, May 2, 2002.

  1. Todd_Kam

    Todd_Kam Extra

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    My current setup is:

    onkyo 595

    front: paradigm monitor 7s

    center: paradigm cc370

    rear: paradigm monitor 7s

    sub: SVS 20-39cs+

    After being frustrated with the lack of pre-outs on the 595 and the desire for more power I've decided to get a new receiver and have about $800-$1000 to spend. Also I was wondering if going with separates would be realistic in this price range? Whether its separates or a reciever I'd like some recommendations.
     
  2. Todd_Michael_R

    Todd_Michael_R Stunt Coordinator

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    Hi Todd. Love your name. [​IMG]
    In that price range, you'll definitely want to go the receiver route.
    A popular option in that price range is the Denon AVR-3802 which has a set of pre-outs if you want to use it down the road as pre/pro. I had one until I upgraded to separates and was thoroughly happy with it. Retail is $999 IIRC but can be had cheaper online if you don't care about the warranty.
    Also popular are the Onkyos and Harmon Kardon's in that range, but I'm not familiar with them. Someone else care to chime in?
    Todd
     
  3. Aslam Imran

    Aslam Imran Second Unit

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    I would go with the 3802 in that price range. Its a sweet sounding receiver
     
  4. Eric_Lakes

    Eric_Lakes Agent

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    If I had a $1000 budget. I would buy a $500-$600 5 channel amp like the Parasound 855.. then get a $400-$500 Receiver..

    Receivers might be rated at 100/watts per channel but the external amps sounds alot better and louder. Once Receievers get outdated, they're almost good for nothing. The Parasound amp can be paired with a more powerful 2 or 3 channel amp latter for a 7.1 or 8.1 system. Plus as a hobby you will always want the latest stuff. If you are replacing a Receiver every other year.. you end up not retaining anything.. if you start with a Amp first, you can keep it until it dies..

    Buy a basic Receiver with DPL II maybe 6.1 and a 5 channel amp.. next year when firewire is in and 7.1 then all you have to do is upgrade to a new Receiver or go for the gusto and get a good pre-amp like the OutLaw 950.

    The receiver route is very limiting and in the long run, if you like to have the newest play toys.. you will be spending more money replacing a high end receiver.

    Next year when the Denon "3803" comes out. The 3802 will be outdated and if you decided to upgrade, what do you do with the 3802.. but if you by the less expensive Receiver now along with the Amp.. you can alway pair up the "3803" with you Amp and throw away the cheap Receiver.
     
  5. Robert_Dufresne

    Robert_Dufresne Stunt Coordinator

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    Hi Todd

    For the money you want to spend, get a receiver.

    Cheap seperates will not give you a better sound

    than a good receiver and the 3802 wont be obsolete

    next year. It has 7 ananlog inputs for whatever the

    futur may or may not bring.

    I do think that seperates are better but it takes

    more money than you are willing to spend to do it

    wright.

    Robert
     
  6. Eric_Lakes

    Eric_Lakes Agent

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    Let's look at a time table to see which one is the better value.

    1st year: $500-$600 Parasound AMP + $400 Receiver

    2nd year: $899 OUTLAW 950

    1st year: $800 (online) Denon 3802

    2nd year: $900 (online) New Denon Receiver

    My point is that with a $1000 budget, you can start into the world of separates. I do agree that at first, with a $400 Reciever, you wont be getting great Music; but HT will still be enjoyable.

    2nd point is that "UpGradeable" is a myth that just sells more products. Even if you have 7.1 or 8.1 or xx.1 inputs, there wont be a DVD player will have have a built-in 7.1 or 8.1 or xx.1 outputs. Could you imagine the cost of a DVD player with built-in DD, DTS, THX, DD 6.1, DTS neo, DTS-ES, DPL II, etc... processors.

    Receiver are like cloths, every season there are new models.

    Separates are like Cars, it takes 4-5 years before a major model change.

    How many people brag about their Denon 3801? It was replaced by the 3802 after only 6 months.

    Compared to, how many people proudly display their 10 year old Separate AMP?

    Instead of the Denon 3802 try the Denon 2802 for arround $550 and the Parasound 855 for $500-$600.
     
  7. chung_sotheby

    chung_sotheby Supporting Actor

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    I would have to say that if your budget for your a/v cneter is above $100, go for seperates. With seperates, at least you will have a good amp, and you can always use a good amp. With receivers, alot of them are obsolete within a year, and their amplifier sections are garbage. I kind of like the idea of buying a mid-level receiver (denon 2802, sony 5es, onkyo) and using only it's pre out sections with an external amp (parasound, Marantz, Rotel). But it all depends on your preferences. For the same performance of a $600 amp and a Denon 2802 paired together, you would have to buy a $2000 receiver, like the Denon 4802. And if you go with a high end receiver, in the end, when the upgrade bug hits, you have an outdated a/v preamp section and an amp that maybe compares with models costing $250. So here is the math

    Scenario 1:

    now: $1000 receiver

    1 year later: $250 amp and have to buy another $1000 receiver

    Total: $2000 for $1000 worth of equipment

    Scenario 2:

    Now: $600 amp and $400-500 receiver

    1 year later: $600 amp and another $400-500 reciever

    Total: $1400-1600 for $1000-1100 worth of euipment

    I dont know about you, but $600 buys alot of DVD's
     
  8. AntonS

    AntonS Stunt Coordinator

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    Todd, with $1000 budget get H/K AVR520 online for about $600 and try to snitch a good 3 channel amp at audiogon.com. Use the amp to power the fronts and internal amps for surrounds. You'll be happy as a pig.

    AVR520 looks better than Denon now (it has better 192kHz DACs ocomparing to Dennon's 96kHz). It also has some nice features like Logic 7 which many prefer to DPLII for two channel and matrixed sources (do you watch cable or have old tapes?)
     
  9. Robert_Dufresne

    Robert_Dufresne Stunt Coordinator

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    AntonS
    Looks are a matter of personal taste. I for instance
    think that HK looks like a xmas tree and prefer the
    more sober lines of denon, outlaw and marantz.
    Beauty is in the eye of the beholder[​IMG]
    Robert
     
  10. AntonS

    AntonS Stunt Coordinator

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    Robert, when I said "looks better" I certainly was not that literal [​IMG]
    Speaking of looks - literally [​IMG] - I do think that 950 is a little ugly and H/K is a little flashy, but I don't care much in eitehr case... becausae I have a cabinet with a door [​IMG]
     
  11. John A. Casler

    John A. Casler Second Unit

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    I think Anton's HK AVR520 auggestion is a good one and I think many also miss the possiblity here of *bi-amping*.

    If the receiver has 5 amp channels and you purchase a 3 channel amp you also have the option (if your speakers have the capacity) of "bi-amping" using the external amp for the woofs and the internal for the mid/highs.

    If you are talking HK, you are talking a sweet sounding system configured in this way.

    When most talk about using the receiver as a pre/pro they forget this possiblity.

    Gentlemen, if ya gott'em, smok'em

    John Casler
     
  12. Tim Baldwin

    Tim Baldwin Stunt Coordinator

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    John,

    I would not biamp that way unless the external amp had adjustable gain settings. Different amplifiers will have different gains from the same preamp output. You might use receiver amp channels for one side/speaker, and the external for others.
     
  13. Tim Baldwin

    Tim Baldwin Stunt Coordinator

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    Todd,

    I wonder how important music is to you relative to movies? Depending on your sources (ie don't want to switch HD component video), format requirements, and comfort/aversion to the used market, you could get what used to be a flagship (or close to it) receiver from 2 or 3 years ago. I've seen B&K 202, Denon 5700, yamaha RX-V3000, Yamaha DSP-A1, Marantz SR-19, etc, etc for around a thousand. If you aren't going to have 6 or 7 speaker setup, and can forego DPL-II, this may be a good choice for you. you should get much better music performance than running an inexpensive receiver as a preamp, and the amp sections are as good as an inexpensive multichannel. You could happily ease your way into separates down the road with higher quality amp additions, and then a dedicated prepro. Just food for thought.
     
  14. DanielKim

    DanielKim Stunt Coordinator

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    I picked up the Sony STR-DA5ES for under $700 and a Parasound HCA-855 for under $500. Love it.

    Dan
     
  15. John A. Casler

    John A. Casler Second Unit

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  16. RobertSchaez

    RobertSchaez Stunt Coordinator

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  17. Robert_Dufresne

    Robert_Dufresne Stunt Coordinator

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    Why dont the companies like Denon, HK, Marantz etc.

    use the pre/pro electronics of their top receivers

    and sell them as pre/pros without the amps.

    You could then buy a 3802 or a 5803 pre/pro and then match it with the power amp that you want.

    Robert
     
  18. Todd_Kam

    Todd_Kam Extra

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    As always thanks for all the reposnses, I think i'm going to stick with just getting a reciever for now. For the record I use my HT primarly for movies. I've cut it down to sherwood newcastle r-863, denon 3802, hk 520 and nad t761. Anymore thoughts on these or other recievers?
     
  19. Eric_Lakes

    Eric_Lakes Agent

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    Todd,
    Sorry to hear that you're not going with separates. [​IMG]
    But I do beleive that the NAD t761 is outdated and will soon be replaced. As for the other 3 choices, either one would be fine. They are all excellent choices. I dont think you will find too many people knocking any of them, but you will find certain camps that love them. I've heard great things about the Newcastle (but Sherwood should take there name off of it and make a new division). Denon will always be a HT name stay. And HK is making a good come back with their new receivers with Logic 7. I would go with the one you can get for the lowest price. And Save the extra money for an External Amp [​IMG]
     

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