Receiver Upgrade choices... 3801, 2802, 1803, DA2ES, others?

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by Stephen Hopkins, Sep 30, 2002.

  1. Stephen Hopkins

    Stephen Hopkins HW Reviewer
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    I'm currently using a Pioneer VSX-D811S with JBL N28 mains, N-Center, N24 surrounds, N24 back surrounds, and a mediocre 12" 200 watt RCA sub (soon to be replaced by a DIY project).

    I really like my 811S, but i'm feeling the urge to move up into something a bit more higher end. I've started to see the inadequacies of the amp section of my receiver after having demo'd some of the products i'm considering. Here are the receivers i'm looking at. I've set my price cap firm at $500 and am willing to order online and, since my father manages a electronics repair firm, i would consider ordering from a non authorized dealer. Here's what i've found so far...

    Denon 3801 (used, under warranty) - $500 shipped
    Denon 2802 (new) - $484 shipped
    Denon 2802 (used, under warranty) - $435 shipped
    Denon 1803 (new) - $401 shipped

    Sony DA2ES (new) - $498

    Right now i'm leaning toward the 3801 since it is nearly exactly the same as the 3802, minus DPLII. Since i'm using a 7.1 speaker setup, i would like the 7 full channels of amplification, but that's not a deal breaker.

    I've also looked at the marantz 5200, but the lack of component video switching bothers me, since i like that feature.

    Are there any other receivers in the sub-$500 shipped range (new or used) that i should look at? Can you point me to any better prices than the ones i've found?

    Also, if anyone has a receiver for sale that they think i would be interested in, please feel free to email me ([email protected]).

    Thanks
     
  2. ThomasL

    ThomasL Supporting Actor

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    Stephen, in my opinion, the 1803 is not going to be that big an upgrade and wouldn't be worth it in my opinion. I also have the 811S and like it. If I was to upgrade and $500 was the limit, I'd first probably look at saving a little more [​IMG] but if not that, then I'd go with the Denon 2802/3801/3802 route.
    good luck,
    --tom
     
  3. Yogi

    Yogi Screenwriter

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    I would snag the 3801 in a heart beat. Its a very nice receiver with a better reliability history then its successor the 3802. Plus soundwise the 3801 is more neutral then the 3802. If you want to wait a little longer I am sure you would be able to get the 3802 for around $550 after the 3803 hits the street, that is if you care much about PLII.

    Best of luck.
     
  4. Stephen Hopkins

    Stephen Hopkins HW Reviewer
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    DPLII isn't a concern since the 3801 has NEO:6, which i prefer to DPLII.

    I may be able to pick up an Onkyo 797 used for around $500, would this be a better option than any of the others i've mentioned?

    thanks
     
  5. Stephen Hopkins

    Stephen Hopkins HW Reviewer
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    bump
     
  6. Chris A H

    Chris A H Stunt Coordinator

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    If the amp section is an issue why not connect the preouts to a multi-channel amp? you can get some goos used stuff in the $500 range.
     
  7. Stephen Hopkins

    Stephen Hopkins HW Reviewer
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    Because my $500 price limit will include $300 i'm going to receive from a friend when he purchases my current receiver. For that reason, external amplification is out.

    Thanks
     
  8. Stephen Hopkins

    Stephen Hopkins HW Reviewer
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    bump
     
  9. Stephen Hopkins

    Stephen Hopkins HW Reviewer
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  10. Yogi

    Yogi Screenwriter

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    I have found Onkyo to be forward and fatiguing to listen to. But its got the oomph to pull together a high impact HT experience. If HT is what you want from your recv then Onkyo is quite good.
     
  11. DanielSmi

    DanielSmi Second Unit

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    it seems as if you want to upgrade alot you used to have speakers no have jbl used have KLh sub now have RCA but what your upgrading to isn't much better than what you had before. It's like you enjoy spending money even thought you don't have alot to spend. I would save more money maybe go without a receiver for a while get a job, if you don't already have one if you have one put in some extra hours. Go with a boombox right now for music, I'm sure you have one. Do that for about a month and buy like that 43tx your were looking at or maybe 45tx if you save up enough, raise an extra 400 and you'll have a 45tx in your grasp.

    Daniel Smith
     
  12. Stephen Hopkins

    Stephen Hopkins HW Reviewer
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    Everyone other than the person I’m about to address, thanks for your posts and advice.

    DanielSmi,

    The JBL speakers were a significant upgrade. The RCA sub was a bad call I’ll admit. The sub situation is soon being remedied by a DIY sub that will sound better than any sub-$500 commercial sub.

    As for the receiver, I like what I have, but I’m looking for something better because I have better speakers now. It's hard to work with the budget I have, but it can be done. I asked for advice on a certain list of receivers, the merits and downfalls of each, and which would be the best to match my setup and price range.

    I DID NOT ask for advice on my spending habits, money management, time allocation, or to be told "Go with a boom box for music for now, I’m sure you have one".

    I currently attend the Georgia Institute of Technology (majoring in aerospace engineering), where 90% of students who take a full course load (I am currently taking 17 credit hours, 5 classes, and heading up a aerospace design competition team) and work part time drop out or are put on academic probation within their first 4 semesters. I'm not going to be forced to leave school because I tried to take a job to boost my HT funds. I'm trying to do the best with what I have to work with. Your post is not advice on the receivers I asked about, it's simply you trying to make me feel as if my equipment is inferior to yours or that I shouldn't have a taste for better gear or something nearly completely unrelated to my original question.

    I'm glad you can afford a 49TXi and love it so much that you put a little picture of it in your signature. I can't. I have a fixed budget and I want to upgrade. You flaming me for that is pointless, rude, and should not be tolerated. Not be me, OR by the moderators. Neither should your flagrant disregard for punctuation and sentence structure. Next time I have a question, stick to the topic or don't post. Don't be rude, belligerent, and stuck so very high up on your elite pedestal.
     
  13. Dalton

    Dalton Screenwriter

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    Well said Stephen. That was uncalled for Daniel. [​IMG]
     
  14. NickSP

    NickSP Supporting Actor

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    I really don't think any of the receivers in question would be an 'upgrade' compared to the 811S. I think you should save your mooney and buy an external amp. Now that would be a true upgrade.
     
  15. DanielSmi

    DanielSmi Second Unit

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    Apparently you misunderstood me, in no way was I trying to say your equipment was bad, I'm not the kind of person to do that. What I'm saying is exactly what Nick said your probably not going to notice a difference if you upgrade from the 811s, you'd be better saving for a 43tx or 45tx or as Nick suggested an external amp, but since you want to sell your 811s to your friend you prolly won't be able to do that. I used to have a similar system to yours, I had the JBL setup I had Yamaha 100xt fronts, JBL N-center, JBL PB10 (which you know about and I won't go into here) and JBL N24 for surrounds. When I went from my Yamaha HTR-5240 ($400) to my 49tx I don't notice that big of a sound change they sounded quite similiar. My equip wasn't that different from yours except for the fronts, and all I'm saying is I don't think you will notice a big change from an 811s to an 3801, 2802, 1803, etc. They're all in the similiar range, you may not even notice a big change to a 45tx, or whatever else I suggested. Again upgrading from a $400 receiver to a $500 receiver isn't going to make you go "wow, is that MY HT, it can't be it can't it sounds so much better!" If I were you I'd put some extra money in to that DIY sub you want. When I went from the JBL 10 to the VELO HGS-10 I couldn't belive what I was missing. I actually went through and had to watch all my movies all over again so I could hear what I was missing I'd go I never heard that before, & I bet you'd a similar outcome if you put they extra money into a better sub. Make a sub with good low end and it'll make your HT sound much better than $100 better receiver. Don't know if I told you this before but I also used to have a KLH sub and I didn't notice that great of a difference between that and my JBL there was a difference but nothing like what you'd get from an upgrade from your RCA to a good DIY sub.

    I asked once if I should buy after market power cords, and I had people tell me that I should spend my money on bass traps or other acoustical treatments because I would get a better improvement in sound with that than after market power cords. They are right I prolly would get better sound by taming my room instead of power cords, but I didn't jump all of over them because they didn't answer my question. Sorry, if you thought I saying you don't know how to spend money, that nowt what I meant, sorry about that.

    Daniel Smith

    p.s. I'm actually an excellent writer at least that's what my comp teacher told me yesterday and that's what the other students in class say but I don't really try to use perfect grammar at a web forum, my weakness in writing is punctuation I'm not good with commas or semicolon's, but you should hopefully notice an improvement in the next few days since a I will be doing some grammar exercises to teach me how and when to use commas.
     
  16. Bill Kane

    Bill Kane Screenwriter

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    I'm actually an excellent writer at least that's what my comp teacher told me yesterday and that's what the other students in class say PERIOD but I don't really try to use perfect grammar at a web forum, my weakness in writing is punctuation PERIOD I'm not good with commas or semicolon's,PERIOD butyou should hopefully notice an improvement in the next few days PERIOD since a I will be doing some grammar exercises to teach me how and when to use commas.
     
  17. DanielSmi

    DanielSmi Second Unit

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    LOL [​IMG] , thanx Bill see as I said I don't know how to use punctuation well. Oh thanx for your help with the CG 500 thing still don't know what I'm gonna do with tit but I'm not using it anymore that's for sure.
    Daniel Smith
     
  18. Stephen Hopkins

    Stephen Hopkins HW Reviewer
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    Daniel,

    Sorry for the angry response to your first post. It just really hit me the wrong way, especially the live without HT for awhile comment. I'm sure my response was pretty harsh, and i do apologize. But...

    If I go with the used 3801, it wouldn't be going from a $400 receiver to a $500 receiver. It would be going from a $400 receiver to a $1200 receiver that I'm just able to pick up used at a great price. The 3801, 3802, and the upcoming 3803 are defiantly in the same league as the 43TX and 45TX. The 43TX and 45TX may be better receivers, but they're not in a completely different class as the 3801 I'm looking at. I've completely ruled out the 1803 and 2802 because, as you said, they wouldn't be substantial upgrades. I am however pretty sure that the 3801 would be a large upgrade. I've done some AB testing at HiFi Buys comparing the 3802 and Elite 41 (same as my 811S) and the 3802 sounded much more open, had a more precise front sound stage, and sounded much clear at higher volumes. By going with the 3801 I get to make what i feel is a substantial step up for only $200, and help a friend get started in HT with a solid first receiver. External amplification would be my probable next step after the new receiver. I think external amplification would be a better suited upgrade for this summer when i'll be back home in a large room dedicated to HT. I don't quite think it would make quite as much of a difference in the small 10'x10' apartment living room here at school. When I do add external amps, I want them to be very solid amps that will stay with me through receiver upgrades and eventually into a move into seperates.

    Thanks, and sorry for blowing up before. I guess your post just hit me the wrong way.
     
  19. Justin H

    Justin H Stunt Coordinator

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    Would you mind if I asked where you're getting those used prices, Stephen? I am also interested in upgrading and would love to check out some deals on used equipment. I have been checking out U-Bid but am not all that enthusiastic about auctions. Thanks. (and sorry for going OT)
     
  20. Stephen Hopkins

    Stephen Hopkins HW Reviewer
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    The two used prices i quoted were both from other HT forum members. You might also want to check out www.audiogon.com . I would stay away from ubid because of the number of horror stories i've heard from other HT forum members.
     

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