Stereo recievers: Denon dra-685 vs Integra dtm-5.3

Discussion in 'AV Receivers' started by Aaron Howell, Feb 16, 2004.

  1. Aaron Howell

    Aaron Howell Stunt Coordinator

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    Well this past weekend my old marantz stereo reciever went on to a better place. As it happens I have been looking for recievers for a few weeks, and was pretty much sold on the denon. But today a local dealer recommended the integra dtm-5.3 over the denon.

    I havn't even heard of integra before, but he assured me it is quality. He told me integra is onkyo's higher end equipment. The problem is I havn't been able to find any reviews of the integra, while good reviews of the denon are plentiful.

    While all the good reviews lead me to want the denon, the integra has one thing the denon doesn't.....line level sub outputs. I use a sub in my system, and regularly compare different subs so this output means a lot. But at the same time my old marantz didn't have a sub out and I got around it.

    Does anyone have experience with the integra stereo recievers? This reciever is only for the basement, but is very important as I listen to 95% of my music there while working on projects.


    So I guess it comes down to this:

    Denon: Quality, reliablity, loudness function, considered by many as THE best stereo reciever.

    Integra: Same rated wattage, flexibility(sub output)

    Specs/info:
    Denon dra-685 $500 new, $300 authorized refurb shipped
    http://www.usa.denon.com/catalog/pdfs/dra685.pdf

    Integra dtm-5.3 $400 new
    http://www.integrahometheater.com/mo...s=Receiver&p=s
     
  2. Lee Distad

    Lee Distad Stunt Coordinator

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    It may be my iggerance (sic), but I have never heard of Integra.

    On the other hand, I am a huge Denon promoter, and have sold more than a few DRA685's and inumerable DRA395's, it's little brother.
     
  3. BobCleary

    BobCleary Auditioning

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    Integra is Onkyo's "high end" line. The components are very similar to Onkyo, and how much "higher end" Integra is compared with Onkyo is up for debate. But on the whole, it's safe to say that Integra is a quality manufacturer, at least on par with Denon.

    I own an Integra receiver (5.4 I think), and find the sound to be slightly aggressive as compared with the NAD that it replaced due to the poor reliability of the NAD. I'm not sure how the sound would compare to a Denon since I've never heard a Denon HT receiver.
     
  4. Aaron Howell

    Aaron Howell Stunt Coordinator

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    Thanks Bob! At least hearing from an integra owner that doesn't have anything bad to say is good news. I've been comparing these two for the past day, and I'm a 'little' closer to a decision.

    Last night I went and checked out both the denon 685 and integra dtm-5.3. Unfortunatly they weren't hooked up to the same sound board or similar speakers(line array vs in-wall mounted into the ceiling).

    On a side note, the dealers denon brochure stated the dra-685 DOES have a sub output?? I called denon today and left a message. I'll just have to wait and see on that one. If there is a way to hook the denon up to a sub, the decision would be over.

    I've also decided to pick up a new cd player at the same time. So in the end it's pretty much $$$ vs flexibility.

    Denon:
    dra-685 $450 everything I want - sub output
    dcm-380 $300 mp3/cd player, 20 bit burr-brown dac's
    or
    dra-395 $300 everything I want, just less power...80x2

    Integra:
    dtm-5.3 $400 everything I want, but little info on value/durability.

    cdc-3.4 $300 mp3/cd player with MANY more options, solid mechanicaly, good remote, 6 disc mp3 random mode...that is the seller for this unit in my book.


    When it comes down to it, the integra cd player was a lot more impressive than the denon. New vs new, the integra setup is a lot more functional. But I was also thinking that this IS for the basement, and authorized b stock with warranty for 2/3 the price makes more sense. Decisions, decisions....
     
  5. Angelo.M

    Angelo.M Producer

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  6. Aaron Howell

    Aaron Howell Stunt Coordinator

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    Thanks Angelo, that is exactly what I see at the local dealer. He keeps telling me it will do what I want, but I don't really see how.

    All of the messages I have left at denon have not been returned, and all emails I have sent to them have bounced back. Overall I am really disappointed by the lack of support. I don't even want to imagine how difficult it would be to get a faulty product repaired.
     
  7. Aaron Howell

    Aaron Howell Stunt Coordinator

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    Well, I have now decided....and I'm not getting either of them. lol

    An authorized NAD c370 for $500 is now in the works. [​IMG] I may still get the integra cd player, but the nad 513 looks pretty good also, but is only a single disc player. Same price though, I'll probably just flip a coin to get this over with. haha
     
  8. BobCleary

    BobCleary Auditioning

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    I'm not familiar with that particular amp, but in general NAD would probably sound better than either Integra or Denon. My NAD A/V receiver certainly sounded better than my new Integra. I also have an NAD CD player (C541). I haven't heard an Integra CD player, but I'd lean towards the NAD over the Integra.
     
  9. Babek

    Babek Stunt Coordinator

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    I'm an owner of an integra dtr 5.3 receiver. It's awsome.

    My dealer also recommended it to me, and after much search on the net I couldn't find much. I came in for an audition along with my friends sony, and the integra was noticeably better. Integra's are also usually only sold through special dealers because they are considered 'higher end'.
     
  10. Aaron Howell

    Aaron Howell Stunt Coordinator

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    Thx Babek, but I've had the NAD for about a few weeks now and it is great. I'm going with the 541i cd player(one remote) and I'm thinking about a c270 amp to go with it.


    On a follow up note, Denon DID finally get back with me, and you can just jump a sub output off of the pre-in/main-out connections with a pair of simple Y cables. I thought of this, and they confirmed it would not hurt anything.
     

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