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Newbie buying first receiver - Please help! (1 Viewer)


Mar 5, 2009
Real Name
I am writing because I am a novice in these parts, piecing together my first home entertainment system. I'm pretty much set; I just need a receiver to finish the puzzle. But what a search! I started with a 42" Panasonic Viera TH-42PX85U and have been very pleased with the picture. So much so, that I believe Panasonic put so much effort into the picture, that they forgot about the internal speaker system. No matter, it was just an excuse to buy a surround sound set. So I found some Polk Audio RM705 5.1 speakers at the Circuit City going out of business sale for 50% off. But now I am forced to get a receiver and am racking my brain with all the choices! So I thought somebody might be able to help me with his or her knowledge. I have the panasonic tv, which is hooked up to a ps3 (which also doubles for my blu-ray and dvd player) and a wii. I don't have cable or satellite, just mainly watch movies through netflix. I also don't want to spend more than $300. I found a Yamaha RX-V463 for $230, a Sony STR-DG520 for $150, and an Onkyo TX-SR506 for $215. Also, my friend who works for Sony said he could get a deal on a Sony STR-DG820 for $250. Also, I think a lot of new models are coming out in a couple of weeks. Should I wait for one of those? Or out of all of these, is there one that I should purchase far and away? Or perhaps none of these?

Also, on a side note, do I need a power conditioner for all of this equipment? Or are those things just a scam? I read many conflicting stories, so right now I'm just using a run of the mill surge protector. If I do need one, could you recommend the cheapest model I would need? Thanks so much!

gene c

Senior HTF Member
Aug 5, 2003
Bay area, Ca
Real Name
Since you have a PS3 you should get a receiver that accepts LPCM via HDMI to take advantage of the new Dolby TrueHD and DTS Master-Audio sound formats. I'm not sure if the Yamaha 463 does, I know the Onkyo 506 doesn't and don't think the Sony 520 does either. I'd go for an Onkyo 576 which has Audyssey DynamicEQ room correction. You can get a factory refurb with warranty form ac4l.com for $249 plus shipping. Or the Sony 720/820 if you must.I would say a power conditioner isn't needed unless you have serious electrical problems. A good quality surge protector should be fine. The most important thing is to have all equipment turned off and un-plugged while hooking it all up. Then plug them into the surge protector, turn the surge protector on, then turn on the equipment.

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