Reciever/amp or pre-amp&amp

Discussion in 'AV Receivers' started by Jon Sciabica, Feb 14, 2005.

  1. Jon Sciabica

    Jon Sciabica Agent

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    I am looking to upgrade my amplifier and want to spend $800 to $1200. If I go with an Reciever/amp I will spend $800 on something like this Onkyo . But would be willing to spend closer to $1200 on a pre-amp&seperate power amp if it would result in significantly better sound.

    Are there and good options for a pre-amp&sep system in the $1000 to $1200 range? Would it be worth it over the onkyo, or a similar Denon?
     
  2. John Garcia

    John Garcia Executive Producer

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    IMO, a dedicated pre will always sound better than a receiver.

    You aren't going to find many new pre/pro & amp combos for $1200. You might look at Sherwood, Outlaw and possibly NAD's offerings in entry level pre & amp setups, but even those are still going to likely be above that price for the two. Maybe look used?
     
  3. JackS

    JackS Supporting Actor

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    I agree with John but a very nice compromise in most cases would be a high quality receiver connected to a two channel amp.
    I have never ruled out the day that I might eventually return to true seperates but have been using the receiver/amp combo for several years without great incentive to change.
    An $800 receiver connected to a $400 amp(new or used) would be a better solution than a $1200 receiver alone, at last in my mind.
    Worst case- the combo should be very good. Best case- who's to say that we haven't achieved the same degree of excellent sound we would expect from seperates?
     
  4. John Garcia

    John Garcia Executive Producer

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    I'm also using a receiver with monoblocks for my mains - Marantz 8300 + MA500s. Works great.
     
  5. John S

    John S Producer

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    There was a real interesting seven channel Sherwood new castle amp posted here recently. Fronted by something like a Pioneer 1014 as the pre / pro would come close to your price range and I would expect the combo to perform pretty amazing for the money spent.

    Just hard to say. You get so much bang for your buck with an AVR. Even still at the $1700 mark, I still chose the AVR, but I was sure close to going separates with it.
     
  6. ChrisHeflen

    ChrisHeflen Supporting Actor

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    Jon,
    You might wanna pop on over to av123.com and check out the new seperates coming out from them.
    They are the Emotiva UL and will be going for $1200.00 for the set. While they might not have all the features of a receiver, they probably will deliver in the sound dept.

    Good luck.
     
  7. Ryan Tsang

    Ryan Tsang Second Unit

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    I'm pretty sure you need to look used for the separates. If so, you will get a noticeable improvement over a receiver. Otherwise, even if you could get a new combo for $1200, I'm not sure it'll give you worthwhile improvements over any half decent receiver from the likes of Onkyo or Denon. (although I'm not familiar with Emotiva as Chris suggested.)

    Having said that: I have an Acurus ACT3 w/ adv bass mgmt prepro that I could sell you. Give it a decent amp and it'll give you the improvements that you're looking for, but it is 5.1 DD and DTS only. Just thought I'd ask.
     
  8. Guy Usher

    Guy Usher Supporting Actor

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    My last system was seperates , Marantz AV-9000 Pre and a Rotel 985THX mk2 5x110 amp. I have used Anthem, Acurus, Adcom, Sony ES, in various configurations.

    Last year I had the bright idea that because we hardly used the gear I would sell it and replace it with a mid-line receiver (Pioneer ELITE VSX45TX).

    I bought the receiver new for about 800 delivered, sold my seperate Amp and Pre for right at 2000.00. Added two more speakers for 7.1 and never looked back. . . Now my receiver is the Pioneer 1014 (cheaper yet).

    The only thing I have noticed is that seperate amps give you more flexibility when choosing speakers (4ohm etc). There might be some subtle changes but in my case not enough to justify the higher price tag. I like the idea of seperates but real world for me anyway receivers over all are tough to beat.
     
  9. Girish

    Girish Stunt Coordinator

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    For $1200 used
    Rotel RSP1066-$800-850
    Harman Kardon Signature 2.1 amp(100wX5)--$400
    You will be happy for a long time with this and no reciever can match that!!!
     
  10. Ricky c

    Ricky c Stunt Coordinator

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    or Rotel rsx1056
     
  11. AlbertD

    AlbertD Stunt Coordinator

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    IMO I believe a B&K AVR-507 matches that. And used, even the price matches, and you get 7 channels of 150 watts per channel and its not current limited like most receivers. But again, that's just my opinion!!!
     
  12. Jon Sciabica

    Jon Sciabica Agent

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    Thanks for all the replies guys.

    After spending sometime on the forums it seems like I will not get enough extra to warrent the increased expense of seperates ($1200 is a lot to me), especially when I begin to look at the 1014 (available for $399), that extra $800 could buy me 2 more speakers to hit 7.1
     
  13. Guy Usher

    Guy Usher Supporting Actor

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    Just watching movies and not being so critical on music I too think it is damn tough to beat that 400 dollar price tag.
     
  14. Thomas Tur

    Thomas Tur Stunt Coordinator

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    I agree with Guy, for watching movies a receiver I believe is going to get you 98% of the way there compared to separates costing many times more dollars.

    Home Theater is mostly about processing power. Large manufacturers like Denon, Sony, HK, Yamaha, etc, have the purchasing power to include the latest and greatest processor chips in their cheapest of receivers.

    Look at the HK 635 which features all that one needs IMO in a processor or receiver for only $750 street. Later if you need some more juice just add an amplifier to the receiver and use it as a preamplifier/processor. That is as good a system for Home Theater as you can get for under I would say $2k.
     

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