Processor "Upgrade" a Good One?

Joined
Jun 3, 1999
Messages
15
Hi all,

I am advised by our home theater consultant to replace our Rotel RSP-985 (to Parasound HCA-1205A 5-channel amplifier) with a Denon 3803. Is this a good move?

The obvious concern is that the Denon 3803's internal amplifier will be inferior to the outboard Parasound amp. Our HT "guy" responds that because we utilize a hefty Velodyne sub, the Parasound amp has gone largely underutilized and that I should not notice an audible difference -- and that, even if I do, there is always the option of bypassing the 3803's internal amp for the outboard Parasound.

Sounds good to me, but every sales guy I speak to makes an ugly face and ushers me over to the $5,000+ Parasound and Rotel processors, as if to say that I'm degrading my system somehow by introducing the Denon.

I have no experience with Denon. I only know that the 3803 appears to answer my requirements:

> Need more S-video inputs
> Need multiple component inputs
> Need upconversion
> Integration of Denon w/ Phast automation would supposedly be better than our current Rotel setup. [It IS pretty funky, and Rotel's is perhaps the WORST remote control layout I have EVER seen.]

So, given these requirements, is this a good move?

Any advice is greatly appreciated.

Dave
 

Frank Carter

Screenwriter
Joined
Mar 12, 2002
Messages
1,187
Let me get this straight, your "consultant" is telling you to get rid of a Rotel pre/pro and Parasound amplifier to "upgrade" to a Denon receiver?
 

Shane Martin

Senior HTF Member
Joined
Sep 26, 1999
Messages
6,017
Frank,
I'm thinking that the consultant wants him to use the Denon as a pre/pro as opposed to a normal pre/pro such as an Anthem. Am I correct in this assumption?
 

Frank Carter

Screenwriter
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Mar 12, 2002
Messages
1,187
That's what I thought at first but then Dave mentions his concerns about the Denon's internal amps being inferior to the Parasound amps.
 
Joined
Jun 3, 1999
Messages
15
Woops. I guess I did confuse the issue by presenting both sides of TWO arguments -- the all-Denon solution and the Denon/Parasound solution.

Judging by your responses, I suppose we can throw out the all-Denon solution. The Parasound amp stays. [And remember, even though the Denon's amp could go entirely unused, this remains the least expensive solution that answers all of my requirements. The Rotel and Parasound alternatives are $3k-$6k and don't offer an obvious advantage. For example, I simply don't need four or even three component inputs.]

Now, given that the Denon 3803 will feed a Parasound amp, is this a good solution? Or, am I still introducing inferior links into my chain? ...so to speak.

Thank you so much for your help. I greatly appreciate it.

Dave
 

Charles Gurganus

Supporting Actor
Joined
Mar 2, 1999
Messages
689
Are you saying the only prepro's you will consider are a 3k rotel and a 6k parasound? What would be wrong with the $1500 Rotel for example? You may want to list your system requirments (5 or 7 channel for example) for better answers and diffinately keep the 1205 amp regardless.
 
Joined
Jun 3, 1999
Messages
15
That's just it: I don't feel that a $3k-$6k processor is required to meet my demands. However, I'm not knowledgeable enough about this kind of equipment to make these decisions confidently. I don't want to inadvertently "cheap out" and degrade my system. Any equipment recommendations are very, very welcome and appreciated.

My requirements are:

INPUTS (video/audio)
- CD Jukeboxes (x2) (optical)
- DVD (S-video/optical) currently combo w/ LD but not forever
- Laserdisk (S-video/optical)
- DSS (component/optical) + (S-video/RCA - to TV)
- PC (component/RCA) (no S-video, so goes only to proj.)
- X-box (S-video/RCA)
- VCR (S-video/?)

OUTPUTS
- TV (S-video)
- Runco projector (S-video & component)

We aim to send only component to the projector in order to elliminate some automation problems. Hence, the new requirement for upconversion from S-video to component. If I understand correctly, DVD and X-box will be line-tripled due to their source resolution, whereas Hi-Def DSS and PC will not.

OTHER REQUIREMENTS
Integration with Phast system. The processor must accept absolute commands. For example, the processor must accept a "Select SOURCE DVD" command, rather than rely solely on relevant (prev/next) commands which always fall out of sync with the programming.

Again, ANY equipment recommendations are welcome.

Thanks again.

Dave
 

Frank Carter

Screenwriter
Joined
Mar 12, 2002
Messages
1,187
I don't think switching to the Denon will be an upgrade. I would also recommend to keep the Parasound amp, if you wanted to upgrade to 6.1/7.1, just add a smaller amp to power the extra channels. Two very popular pre/pro's around here are the Outlaw 950 and Rotel RSP-1066. I would look into either of these to see if they meet all your criteria.
 

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