Ref 50 or Newcastle 965

Discussion in 'AV Receivers' started by ChrisHeflen, Feb 12, 2004.

  1. ChrisHeflen

    ChrisHeflen Supporting Actor

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    Ok this is a post for a friend who was sold on the 965, but now might be able to get a deal on a Ref 50, but is too chicken to ask.

    What do you guys think. The 965 has a great feature set, but so does the 50.
    What about all the pops and clicks with the 50 and the whining? Is it commonplace, or did only a few people have this.

    Help please!
     
  2. Jarrod

    Jarrod Agent

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    It's a tough call. With the new price point on the Ref50, I decided to go with it rather than wait for the 965 (but I don't have it yet since I'm waiting on a firmware update - see below).

    On paper, the Ref50 has more features that I think will be useful to me (THX Ultra2 room gain adjustments and the notch filter in particular are things I am anxious to try in my room). There is a new firmware just released last week that is supposedly going to reduce/eliminate the audible noises that can be heard upon switching between sources (which is due to a deliberate design decision to NOT include a muting circuit on B&K units)

    In terms of features on the 965 that I don't believe are on the ref50:

    -DPLIIx
    -The 965 will be king on zone 2 features
    -2ch "digital remastering" to 192KHz for stereo audio (remains to be seen if
    this will be an audible improvement or not.
    -Field-upgradable (you have to send the B&K back for updates)

    From what I can tell, the B&K has a lot of tweakability features that aren't going to be on the 965 (but this is hard to tell without being able to play w/ the 965). It also has an awesome remote, if that's something your friend can use.

    Of course, the 965 has a 25% lower list price than the Ref50 so that may be extremely motivating. I was also considering the Rotel 1068 which is somewhere in between the two units in terms of price.
     
  3. Stephen M

    Stephen M Stunt Coordinator

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    I am not sold on Sherwood's quality control. It has had a history of bad quality in their receivers over the years. Regarding B&K, as usual on the net, QC issues are grossly exaggerated involving a specific cable box. Many thousand owners have the Ref 50 who do not post on the net and have not one problem. At twice the price, the choice would be a little more difficult. At $500 more, no contest IMO. Get the B&K and a good dealer who will address any QC issues you may be concerned about regarding the Ref 50.
     
  4. ChrisHeflen

    ChrisHeflen Supporting Actor

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    We went to look at the 50 on my lunch and liked it. Of course the sales guy didn't know squat about it.
    Do you know if it has bass management on the 5.1 input? The sales guy said he didn't know and that you don't need it becasue you should always run your speakers "large" no matter how small and that you have to have three sub woofers in your room to get the proper sound.

    I asked if we had to brush our teeth before and after.

    I wasn't aware of the q/c on the Sherwoods. I have heard about a lot of q/c issues with B&K though, and not just on the web.
    I was also told that BK was in financial trouble as well.
     
  5. TimGRA

    TimGRA Stunt Coordinator

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    OSD through component video?
     
  6. Dan Driscoll

    Dan Driscoll Supporting Actor

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    Sherwood gear is made in a different factory (and country) than Newcastle gear. I know Sherwood equipment has had some QC issues, but TTBOMK, that is not the case for Newcastle branded components.
     
  7. Donnie Eldridge

    Donnie Eldridge Supporting Actor

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    Don't forget the Reference 50 comes with the Hometheater Master MX-700 remote. Even if the price were the same that would be the deal breaker.
     
  8. Randy_Mann

    Randy_Mann Stunt Coordinator

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    I hadn't heard that B&K was in financial trouble. Where did you hear this?

    Chris, you have a PM.
     
  9. Donnie Eldridge

    Donnie Eldridge Supporting Actor

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    This rumor started because of the price drop of the Reference 50.
     
  10. ChrisHeflen

    ChrisHeflen Supporting Actor

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    Please, I am not trying to start rumors, but merely going on what I was told.
    I had heard it from a friend in the biz. He is not a dealer, but he knows the rep in my area.
    There has to be SOME reason they would drop the price by a grand. I have never seen this happen on a current piece unless it was being replaced.
    I don't wanna see my friend end up with a dead-end piece.
     
  11. David_h

    David_h Auditioning

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    1) The ref50 price drop is to get rid of the exhisting units to get ready for the new model. This is a very common practice in the industry.
    2) The MX700 remote is incredible and worth $375.00
    3) I love my Ref50.
    Does any of this help?
    [​IMG]
     

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