Should I upgrade--Denon 3200 to Denon 3801

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by Mac, Jul 28, 2001.

  1. Mac

    Mac Agent

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    I have had the 3200 for 3 years now and still love it. I have it matched with the Millenium DTS decoder and still watch DD LD's through the RF decoder. I have recently added the Sony 775 SACD player -- 2-channel and multichannel. I have the 2-channel gooing through the normal analog inputs, which I understand on the 3200 are not true analog--they are converted to digital and then back to analog--which reduces the performance of the SACD players. Also, the 3200's 6-channel inputs are currently taken up with the Millenium DTS decoder, so I cannot hook up the multi channel option of the SACD player--not a big deal now--very few titles available. Does anyone know how big a deal the "true" analog pass through capability is on the 3801 vs the 3200 for SACD--DVD-audio--MSB Link DAC D/A converter (which I also have going through the analog inputs? I think I can get a 3801 for around $900.00, but I only want to get it if it would be a noticeable upgrade for the items listed above. Also, does the 3801 have a RF input for LD's, and if not, what are my options? I still enjoy a DD LD now and again. Thanks.
    Mac
     
  2. Gil D

    Gil D Supporting Actor

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    Mac,
    You have a similar setup to me. Well at least since yesterday - I picked up the Onkyo 696 to play with. I had the Denon 3200 wired to the CE775 via the 6 channel in. Why haven't you gotten any SACD's?
    You absolutely need to use the 6 channel inputs on the Denon 3200 for your SACD player and MSB Dac. Otherwise it's redigitized and thus defeats the purpose of the SACD and external DAC. The 6 channel inputs on the Denon 3200 are excellent - I prefer the analog routing via the 6 channel of the Denon over the Onkyo. Does anyone know if the Onkyo 696 has analog bypass on the stereo analog inputs?
    The 3801 will free up the 6 channel input and has analog bypass on the 2 channel audio inputs and avoid the digitizing and sound degradation. I wish that Denon had included more digital inputs since my laser hogs 2 of them and then need one each for dvd,cd changer, and sat..ugh!
    I am also wondering about the 3801 vs the 3200 (a great receiver). Especially given that the 3801 will be on clearance to make room for the 3802. How does the D/A and analog bypass, and 6 channel in perform vs the 3200. My use would be primarily as a preamp.
     
  3. Chuck Kent

    Chuck Kent Supporting Actor

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    Mac: How much do you listen to 2 channel based material? If you watch much of any regular programming on TV or listen to CDs, you should really consider getting a 3802 and skip over the 3801. The 3802 has Dolby Prologic II and by all informed reviews or impressions I've read, it's a major improvement over regular Prologic.
    As for whether or not to upgrade in general, YES YES YES! Having everything integrated into one control center brings alot more ease of use. You can adjust your DTS LFE to suit you and still keep it where you want it for Dolby Digital. Another benefit is that you'll have real bass management for your DTS. The Millenium unit just doesn't support the kinds of bass rerouting that most of us need/use. These are benefits that can make real improvements in the sound of your system. Of course, either the 3801 or 3802 will bring 6.1 sound to you and DTS-NEO. Both additional improvements over your current setup.
    The one thing that both of the new Denons don't have are RF modulators. I haven't checked but I'm fairly certain that they are still available from many makers (Yamaha, Kenwood, B&K) and you could probably find good deals on e-bay too.
    I'm taking my own advice. I'm going from my 3300 to a 3802 in the next week or so. The main reason for me is the DPL II.
    ------------------
     
  4. DaveBB

    DaveBB Supporting Actor

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    I'm in the same boat as you. My 3200 has been great but not having dts onboard and having to use my Sony DVP-670D DVD player for a decoder has not been the best situation.
    I have see here and other forums that the 3802 does not have an RF input for laserdiscs. You should double check that though-can't tell you about the 3801. The manual is available online at the Denon site for the 3801: check it there.
     
  5. Mike Sheahan

    Mike Sheahan Stunt Coordinator

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    I just found the Denon 3801 at moreaudiovideo.com for only $673.99.
    That's a pretty good deal!
     
  6. Mac

    Mac Agent

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    Gil
    How would I use the Millenium for the MSB DAC? I believe it has only 6 channel pass through--that would allow me, I guess, to hook the SACD through it. But how would I connect the two channel MSB D/A converter through it? Are the 6-channel inputs on the Denon 3200 pure Analog, or do they also first digitize. Also, I do listen to alot of 2-channel music--so that would be important to me. Thanks for all the great info--I am closer to the 3801 buy--good price at $688.00--is it Demo or new in the box?
    Mac
     
  7. Lewis Besze

    Lewis Besze Producer

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    The 3801 or the 3802 don't have any DD RF input for laserdisc.
    ------------------
    "You Hungarians always disagree"
     
  8. Mike Sheahan

    Mike Sheahan Stunt Coordinator

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    It doesn't say anything about open box or "refubished".
    I think its new in the box for $673.99.
    Now I have to decide wheather it's worth the extra bucks for the 3802, or the new Onkyo 797 which will be out in September.
    I hate making these kind of decisions.
     
  9. Gil D

    Gil D Supporting Actor

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    Mac,
    The Denon completely bypasses the A/D and is pure analog.
    Laser Disc is a thing of the past and mid-priced receivers will not include RF demodulators for AC3. I bought the Sony RF demodulator awhile back so that would not be an issue moving forward with new technology.
    I'm not that familiar with the Millenium but if it has 6 channel pass thru then you could connect the CE775's multichannel outputs to the Mille's 6 channel in and use an inexpensive A/B switch or two to manually switch between the CE775's L&R channels and the MSB's stereo channels.
    But the 3801 with built in DTS, analog bypass, and 7 channel input will be very convenient. I read the review in the recent issue of the Perfect Vision and apparently it is very transparent for SACD. I think this is where my Onkyo may be coming up short. It also has a very interesting feature mentioned in the rebuttal from the Denon representative in that there is an analog crossover selectable for the mains and a digital crossover for the sub. This is a great feature as the Denon crossover is at an acceptable 80Hz where as the Sony's is at a high 120Hz. And the analog crossover for the mains should preserve the integrity of the analog SACD signals for the mids and treble.
    But I can tell you that DPL2 is very nice on the Onkyo. I never liked DPL on my Denon and was one reason I went with a Sony ES unit as an upgrade.
    Can anyone tell us how DPL2 compares to the 3801's Neo?
     
  10. MatthewJ S

    MatthewJ S Supporting Actor

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    yes, upgrade and be sure to upgrade again in a couple months to the AVR3802
     
  11. Samuel Des

    Samuel Des Supporting Actor

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