Sony STRDA777ES - To repair or not to repair; that is the question

Discussion in 'AV Receivers' started by Jim DiJoseph, Dec 14, 2005.

  1. Jim DiJoseph

    Jim DiJoseph Second Unit

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    Well, I woke up this morning and lo and behold my Sony flagship receiver (STRDA777ES) went a bit haywire. I haven't had time to check every little detail, but the way the unit crackled and then went out on me, I have a feeling that it will need repair. Sadly, the 5-year warranty expired earlier this year, so it appears that it will cost me at least $300 to get the device fixed (could be more).

    Anyway, I'd like to solicit opinions. Should I put money into this device because it was (is) a superior model in many ways, or should I move on and start looking at replacing it? If the latter, I would appreciate suggestions or comments.

    Thanks!
     
  2. PatrickJB

    PatrickJB Extra

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    "Sadly, the 5-year warranty expired earlier this year"

    ...isn't that how it always works? [​IMG]

    If you figure it's going to cost $300 to fix it I'll venture to say go ahead and find yourself a newer, better one.

    If you browse through this fourm you should be able to find a solid upgrade for between $300 and $500.
     
  3. Dick Knisely

    Dick Knisely Second Unit

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    Given the original price on that critter, I'd pay the fee to get a repair estimate.

    After that its an interesting call on the repair/replace decision. While you can certainly find a compentent replacement for the $300, replacing it with the equivalent is, I think, going to still have a pricetag well over the $1,000 mark. Of course, there are also several sources for used/refurbished units if you want to keep that model but junk the dead one.

    Personally, I wouldn't repair it if that cost over $200-300 because I'd simply look at it as fate's way of telling me that it was time for an upgrade [​IMG] (assuming I could afford the upgrade vs. the repair!).
     
  4. Jim DiJoseph

    Jim DiJoseph Second Unit

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    Thanks to both of you for your comments. You definitely see the dilemma I face. I wish I had the funds to drop $1K or so on a replacement, but that would be a tight fit right now. However, I value my home theater experience, so I want to do what's best. I'll be interested to hear what others have to say - especially those who might have been in a similar situation. Thanks.
     
  5. Westly T

    Westly T Second Unit

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    That is a very high quality amp, I have one. I would say to fix it, I was looking at tehm on ebay and they are still selling int the $800-high $900 range used. The main reason I'm thinking of upgrading is for features mine lacks, but it's build quality is much better then the new stuff.
     
  6. John Garcia

    John Garcia Executive Producer

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  7. Scott Merryfield

    Scott Merryfield Executive Producer

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    I used to own a DA50ES, and it only had a 5 year warranty (and I did have one repair under warranty).

    I would have a hard time putting $300 repair money into a five year old piece of equipment. If you do not have the funds for a comparable quality replacement, you could always buy something less expensive to get you by, and then sell it later (or move it to another room) when you have more funds on hand. You will lose some money on the resale, but it may be better than going into debt now.
     
  8. Jim DiJoseph

    Jim DiJoseph Second Unit

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    Thanks, guys. Yes, definitely a five-year warranty, which is the standard on these ES models.

    Well, I decided that replacing is probably better than repairing at this point, so I opened the case myself to see if I could be so lucky as to have a simple fuse out or some other obvious defect. No dice. And in my house, there really is no place for a second-string setup, so this thing has been relegated to the scrap yard. [​IMG] Fare thee well, 777ES...

    Now on to researching a suitable replacement - and figuring out how I'm going to pay for it!
     
  9. mackie

    mackie Supporting Actor

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    If cash is tight, the new outlaw receiver is getting rave reviews.

    With HD DVD and Blue Ray coming out before too long, I'd be hesitant to drop a bunch of cash on a new receiver that won't be compatible. I believe there is a new surround sound format coming out with these. Also the whole HDMI issue has me concerned too.
     
  10. Jim DiJoseph

    Jim DiJoseph Second Unit

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    Thanks, mackie...which model is that? I'm not sure I can afford separates at this point. And I agree with you that some serious changes are on the horizon. I'm torn between getting a cheap, quick fix now (and replace properly later) and making a serious purchase now.
     
  11. mackie

    mackie Supporting Actor

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    http://www.outlawaudio.com/products/1070.html

    Try this link. Its going for $899.

    I thought it was a little less[​IMG] I've bought a few B-stock and reconditioned items from manufacturer authorized dealers with good success. You can find pretty good deals that way.
     
  12. Jim DiJoseph

    Jim DiJoseph Second Unit

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    Thanks, mackie!
     
  13. John_Lee

    John_Lee Supporting Actor

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    if it's indeed scrapyard bound, I'd be interested in paying shipping on the unit. I love my 777ES, and would hate to lose it. Even the off chance that what breaks some day in mine [knock wood] could be fixed with still working parts in yours would be worth the gamble.
     
  14. Steve Berger

    Steve Berger Supporting Actor

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    Just wondering, where did you get the $300 minimum from? The Factory Flat Rate is only $215 and that covers anything but running over it with a truck or obvious lightning damage. (catching fire type damage)

    There are a lot of simple possibilities that would be under $100.
     
  15. Jim DiJoseph

    Jim DiJoseph Second Unit

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    I saw that charge on the web site, but I added boxing and shipping to it. I also figured that Sony would find a way to charge me more since I had upgraded the firmware myself and openend the box myself.

    John_Lee, if this is designated for the scrap heap, I will contact you. No problem.
     
  16. StevieP

    StevieP Stunt Coordinator

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    Jim,

    I see you are in Boca Raton....

    Over here in St. Pete/Clearwater, we have two Sony "Platinum" and one "Gold" rated service center.

    I would think that you might have similar, and not need to send off your DA 777ES to Sony, so shipping should not be an issue unless you just want to send it off to Sony.

    Doing the firmware upgrade yourself should also not be a problem....they offered it as a download to the public, and also offered a "upgrade disc with remote kit" if I remember correctly.

    While not having the latest in processing, or video switching, the 777 was indeed a fine receiver...The amp section would be hard to beat with a newer $500-$600 model.....I also think you may be less than satisfied with your new purchase when comparing sound quality and flexibility in things like bass management & EQ....
    To retain that flexibility, you would have to step up in cost considerably...I know Sony no longer offers as much flexibility in their new flagships, and have not, since the DA 3,4,5,&7ES models. (I own the DA 5ES)

    As another thought....You may want to pop over to Agoraquest (Sony enthusiast forum) and post your question/dilemma in the receiver forum.....One of the Techs over there with access to Sony ESI may be able to give you some idea as to what might be happening with your 777, and at least let you know if it is likely to be expensive to fix.

    I for one...Would hate to see that receiver go in the trash :b

    Steve~
     
  17. Jim DiJoseph

    Jim DiJoseph Second Unit

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    Steve,

    Thanks for the response, and good point. The nearest service center is a bit of a drive, but not far at all. That's a viable alternative.

    I'll check that forum out, too. Appreciate the suggestion. I really don't want to throw this thing away either!

    Jim
     
  18. Steve Berger

    Steve Berger Supporting Actor

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    Sony ESI has almost nothing on the receiver except solder connections on the power relay (I was an authorized Sony Servicer for 25 years). A more detailed decsription would be needed to start long distance diagnosis. Circuit board ground connections (mounting screws) as well as connectors coming unsoldered can cause oddball problems. I couldn't think of very many things to suggest to a DIYer based on your problem description.

    Personally, I also hate to see things pitched without even a cursory attempt at repair.
     
  19. Jim DiJoseph

    Jim DiJoseph Second Unit

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    I work in technology and have worked on my share of computers (I know, apples and oranges). Still, that's why I did venture into the box. I wanted to make sure that there were no obvious shorts, blown fuses, or other issues that could be viewed via cursory inspection. Also, taking it apart meant removing and replacing several screws which could have helped with grounding issues. Alas, I probably made things worse as I tried to get the face plate off using a bit too much force. (I didn't rip it off or anything, but I probably didn't help by trying to coax it off.)

    I think I'm leaning towards getting a new box - probably something on a lesser scale since I'm not ready to perform a huge upgrade (though my Klipsch Synergy speakers are still going strong after five years). If I do make a purchase, I'll do something with the receiver that does not include tossing it away. Thanks for all the suggestions/advice!
     

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