should I keep my Onkyo 601?

Discussion in 'AV Receivers' started by eddieZEN, Dec 8, 2004.

  1. eddieZEN

    eddieZEN Second Unit

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    I've had it for 6 days now, have 8 more left on J&R's return period and can't decide if I want to trade up for the Marantz 5400 or not. I don't have any huge complaints about the 601 but couldn't honestly say that I'm bowled over by its music SQ, and from what I keep hearing, the 5400 is supposedly much better for people like me who listen to music more often than movies.

    Now, bear in mind that the Mordaunt Short speakers I have hooked up to the receiver (MS05) are not exactly audiophile quality, so how much of a difference do you think I would *really* hear with the 5400? It sounds like most people who own the Marantz also own speakers that are at least one or two price levels above mine.

    To further complicate things, it now looks like hifi.com is out of stock of the 5400, their site says "ships in 2-3 weeks." Argh!

    So my question is, should I really bother, or just stick with what I have? Would a non-audiophile like myself, with non-audiophile speakers, really be able to hear much of a difference to justify the $150 price jump (not to mention having to ship the Onkyo back on my own dime)?
     
  2. Wayne Ernst

    Wayne Ernst Cinematographer

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    #1) You really can't go on just opinions of others. If some others on the Internet feel that Marantz is great for music, it doesn't mean that you will be equally impressed with the music performance.

    #2) It's hard to just buy gear off of other's opinions. You have to go out and audition this gear for yourself. Listen to several receivers that are available in the market. Heck, I look at gear on nearly a weekly basis - even though I'm not in the market for it. I just like to hear are various pieces of gear stack up and how it sounds.

    #3) When it comes to the Marantz 5400, why buy last year's model? The 5500 is out and if you are dead set on Marantz, you might seriously consider the newer model.

    Enjoy [​IMG]
     
  3. eddieZEN

    eddieZEN Second Unit

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    #1 and #2 I can't disagree with; in fact I was planning on finding some local Marantz dealers today and going in for a listen. Of course they'll have totally different speakers and totally different listening rooms, so I have some doubt as to how much of a difference I could really notice, unless they happened to have both the Onkyo and the Marantz so I could switch between them.

    #3---strictly cost. The 5400 was going for $450 at hifi.com, whereas the 5500 I see is closer to $600 which would be double what I paid for the 601 and out of my budget.
     
  4. Jason Hammerly

    Jason Hammerly Supporting Actor

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    You might check out the SR5500 here. Authorized dealer and $480 shipped. Just a thought. You'd have 7.1 and PL2x for barerly anymore money.

    Jason
     
  5. eddieZEN

    eddieZEN Second Unit

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    Thanks, Jason. However it looks like it's a refurb with only a one-year warranty. Hmmm...hard call there!
     
  6. John Garcia

    John Garcia Executive Producer

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    IMO, the sound quality should definitely improve with the Marantz, but the 601 has more features and flexibility.

    If you are going AC4L, note that the majority of receivers there are refurbs, that's why the prices are low. I've used them many times and I have no problem recommending them.

    Mordaunt Short makes some great speakers. I have 902s with a Marantz PM7000 and it's a sweet match (MS is a sister company of Marantz). Take a look at the MS speakers they have, you might find something to upgrade to...
     
  7. Tingwe

    Tingwe Stunt Coordinator

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    now, what i don't understand is how can a new receiver (recent model) be a refurb? what, lotsa folks returned'em? defective parts? i mean, aren't these barely out on the mkt? [​IMG]
     
  8. John Garcia

    John Garcia Executive Producer

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    Particularly when the first round of receivers goes out, there are invariably a few that were damaged and/or just got by QC with problems. It's normal for most manufacturers.
     
  9. Stephen Hopkins

    Stephen Hopkins HW Reviewer
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    Also if a receiver is damaged cosmeticly during the build proccess they will repair the cosmetic blemish and box it and sell it as refurbished. Anything that doesn't meet the first round of QC will be repaired or rebuilt and sold as refurbished. 9/10 refurbished items are items that never left the factory, not many at all are returned items, especially on items that are fairly new to market.
     
  10. eddieZEN

    eddieZEN Second Unit

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    John,

    > IMO, the sound quality should definitely improve with the Marantz, but the 601 has more features and flexibility.

    Could you provide some examples of features that the Onkyo which has which the Marantz does not? I'm curious, esp. since I'm relatively new to all this.
     
  11. John Garcia

    John Garcia Executive Producer

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    Most of the features I found useful on the 601 were related to bass management. Selectable x-over as low as 60hz, bass can be selected to use mains+sub, some others I don't remember. I found the 601 to be fairly easy to setup, though the menu is not entirely simple to navigate on the front panel (did not have the OSD hooked up yet).

    I'm a Marantz guy though. I can live with less features for that sound.
     
  12. eddieZEN

    eddieZEN Second Unit

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    John,

    I would agree with the SQ over features standard; I find that when listening to music at high volumes the 601 still sounds best in either Direct mode or Stereo mode, and since I only have 3 front speakers plus sub right now I don't really get much out of all their surround sound tweaks.
     

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