Sony STR DE425 Upgrade question

RussellTodd

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I am in the process of upgrading my home theater system. I currently have the Sony STR DE425 "HTIB" which has served me well. However, I am replacing the Sony speakers that came with the system with the Boston Acoustics Micro System 9000 II. I know my present receiver has the power to push the BA speakers however this receiver irritates me in that when you put it in 5.1 mode then no adjustments to the speakers levels can be made. In addition I think 5 years ago I paid $500 for the entire Sony STR DE425 "HTIB" speakers and receiver. My DVD player does have the 5.1 outputs to match the receivers 5.1 inputs. However, I am wondering just what I have been missing by using this lower end receiver.

My question is this, does anyone have any recommendations as to a mid level receiver that would match up well the BA speakers. I am looking for something in the less than $400 range. I have a somewhat limited budget as I am also purchasing a 36” HD Sony WEGA.

Thanks
 

John Garcia

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Your speaker adjustments are done in the player, not the receiver, when using the analog outputs of the player. Some newer receivers offer the ability to level adjust the m/c inputs.

With smaller speakers, you probably aren't missing a whole lot with this receiver, but I would highly recommend stepping up from this receiver at some point. Having owned a few Sony DE receivers (including the higher models), I can say they are not all that great. Cleaner power allows the system to give clearer sound even at lower levels, and also tends to yeild better dynamics. You have plenty of good choices at the under $400 range. Take a look at the offerings from Harman Kardon, Onkyo, Denon and Marantz.
 

David G Greene

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Add Yamaha too that list also.
 

RussellTodd

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I am somewhat confused by the contradictory statement in that on the one hand you say that since I am using micro speakers I probably will not notice a discernable difference by upgrading the receiver. However, you go on to say that you recommend upgrading at some point to obtain a clearer sound. I should say that this system will be used more for TV and movies than music. Although, I would like a system that can do both reasonably well.

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John Garcia

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In the $400 range, you will still get an improvement in sound, however with small speakers, that improvement will then be limited by the speakers. Your speakers make the largest impact on your system's ability to perform, and no amount of receiver upgrade can compensate for speakers that lack oomph.
 

ChadLB

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The low end sony's sound muddy to me when listening to music. Not sure with movies though.
Look at HK, Onkyo, Pioneer, yamaha. They all have some decent receivers in that price point. Depends on what features you want.
 

ChrisLazarko

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In the less than $400 what I would look at is Harman/Kardon, Onkyo, Yamaha, and Pioneer.

Just got a Pioneer for $90 on clearence at Circuity City, although I think it is now completely discontinued, and it didn't sound half bad, for a retail of something like $150.

But I really like the Harman/Kardon recievers. Although there power is rated lower they 99% of the time come out on top of all the other because of there very strong amp and how they rate there power supplys, but let me steer away from an arguement that might happen.

The HK looks are very nice, the sound is great, and inputs are all you need, none you don't, and the features are more than enough to please, especially Logic7 for those 2channel sources to turn to 5.1 sound.

The AVR-125 and 225 can be found under a $400 price-range for sure and are great mid-level recievers, they are last years model so a refurb is probably the best you can do, but check them out at HarmanAudio, they are great units.

The AVR-130 and 230 are this years model and can also be found for your price point. The AVR-125 and 130 are exactly the same except for body features I believe?

The 230 compared to the 225 features a 6th channel for a rear center, as well as components inputs, and a new look.

Check them out, I was pleased with mine, and still am for years to come.
 

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