Which receiver will I be satisfied with?

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by Dale_S, Feb 21, 2002.

  1. Dale_S

    Dale_S Stunt Coordinator

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    Here's the scoop:

    I have owned a Denon 5800 for the past year and a half. While I have been ultimately happy with it in respect to sound, I've had numerous other issues that have let me down. To that end, I have told my dealer that I am bringing the unit in for service. I fully expect that my unit will have to be returned to a factory service center elsewhere in Canada, or perhaps back to Denon Japan.

    In any case, I'm preparing for the long haul by purchasing a new receiver. This new receiver will encompass two tasks:

    1) It will fill the void while my 5800 is away for repairs, but I don't expect it to live up to the level of the 5800. Especially when it comes to the number of inputs and outputs.

    2) After my 5800 returns from service, this new receiver will move into the bedroom/den and become the centerpiece of that room's A/V equipment.

    Here's what I want out of it:

    - DPL II (music and cinema)

    - Dolby Digital EX

    - DTS ES

    - a minimum of 2 coaxial digital inputs

    - preferably some built-in s-video switching

    - a DECENT programmable remote, backlit for dark room use

    In its eventual home in the den I will be using it with a set of Mission 760 bookshelf speakers for fronts, and similar (not yet purchased) speakers for the center/surrounds/rear center. A small sub like the Sony SA-WM40 will round out the sound.

    Given my experience with Denon, I'm not sure I want to consider them, but the 1802/2802 do seem to be a favorite and are in the right ballpark for price ($1000 CDN; about $650 US). The 3802 is just a tad high. Other units I've looked at are a Harmon Kardon AV320 (Logic 7 would be a nice bonus) and an Onkyo 595 (probably 600 now). I haven't looked at others like Marantz, Kenwood, etc., so I ask for your help. What will least let me down? All help is appreciated!
     
  2. Mark Austin

    Mark Austin Supporting Actor

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  3. Earl Simpson

    Earl Simpson Supporting Actor

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    Wow! I don't know if that can be done??? Most of the 2 digital coax rcvrs are at least $975(Sony DA5es) Onkyo 797(in your price range),898&989//Yama 5490

    I have the 3802, but only one digital coax. If you don't need 6 amps, then the HK 520 might work. I will be facinated to see what everyone comes up with on this one.

    The 3es is in that range, but I don't think it has dolby2, but meets all your other criterea.

    The new lines are coming out in the next 3 months, but that will be too late for you.

    PS/ If you can accept only 5 amps, there are some other choices. The two coax in and dolby2 will clear the field in a hurry.
     
  4. ReggieW

    ReggieW Screenwriter

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    Come again? Denon running a scam? I own two of them and they have NEVER given me a single problem. My uncle owns a 5800, and not a single problem. Denon is NOT Bose, they are among the favorites of AVR critics and audiophiles the world over - and have been for many decades for a reason. Do a search of the forum and you will find MANY happy Denon owners here. There were some quality issues with some of their DVD players, but hopefully this is being squared away. Back on subject, If you are looking for a hold-over receiver, pick-up the 1802. I would not recommend spending much more on something that will be temporary. I think the 1802 will match perfectly with your speaker and sub setup in your den. Have you also considered the 5803 upgrade for your 5800? This may be essential while you are getting it repaired. Wouldn't it be great to get your 5800 back essentially as a 5803!?

    Reg
     
  5. Mark Austin

    Mark Austin Supporting Actor

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    Oh cripes! For the record, I DID NOT bring up Bose.

     
  6. Todd Hochard

    Todd Hochard Cinematographer

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    My home audio purchases have been exclusively Denon since 1987, and every single piece is still operational and in use (either by me, or the various people who bought my hand-me-downs).
    So, I have nothing but praise for them.
    However, given some of the long-standing dealer relationships they've ended, the new ownership, and the QC issues with some of the latest (DVD-2800, DVM-4800, etc), I'm beginning to wonder.
    If not the Denon 2802/3802, then give Marantz a try. I had a short demo at a dealer the other week (when looking at the DLP VP-12S1!), and it sounded pretty smooth. I don't know the model # or price, though.
    Todd
     
  7. felix_suwarno

    felix_suwarno Screenwriter

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    my avr1802 died on me after 3 months of use. the rear right channel was dead.it has been 4 and half weeks since i sent it back to the store where i bought it.
     
  8. ReggieW

    ReggieW Screenwriter

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    Felix,

    I'm sorry you are still having this return/repair issue with your 1802. I replied in one of your threads a few weeks ago regarding Denon honoring the warranty. You definitely got a lemon from wherever you bought it and they should do whatever they can to accomodate your getting a new unit or having it repaired. Please keep in mind, that whenever you send a unit in for repair, regardless of the company or warranty, it will take time. Hopefully when you get it back, you 1802 will be trouble free. My 1802 was bought unauthorized as well, but luckily, I've had no problems as of yet.

    Mark,

    I see of no better method of judging a company than by its customer satisfaction - especially when many of the people who commonly buy Denon merchandise tend to be far more critical than the average J6P crowd. So I will have to disagree with you when you state this means little/nothing. Obviously, many people feel happy with their Denon purchases. I'm sorry yours didn't work out for you. As far as Denon having issues, are you implying that Onkyo, Sony, B & K, and others don't? I did mention that their first generation DVD line was plagued with problems, so they certainly aren't perfect, but they still are among the best companies out there producing AVR's imho. I work with DE series Sony's priced in the same range as my 1802 everyday, and I can tell you that the Denon 1802 sounds MUCH better than those imho, though I do think the Sony is more user friendly. Hell, I got into this for the sound, so everything else is just water under the bridge!

    Reg
     
  9. Dale_S

    Dale_S Stunt Coordinator

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    Thanks for the speedy input guys.... that's one of the things I love about this forum - almost instant answering of my questions.

    As for some of the replies... I'm pretty sure I'm going to stick to my convictions and rule out Denon at this time. As much as I'm familiar with their product and its sound, my concerns with their customer service and committment are just too strong.

    I hadn't really considered the Sony line due to past experience with other Sony product, but for interests sake I will include them in my planned demos. I do want a 6 channel unit, hence my request for a EX/ES unit.

    I will probably have to relax my 2 digital coax input restriction based on price. Lets face it, I'm not buying another unit to permanently replace the Denon 5800, and something at that price level is out of the question for a bedroom/den unit. Worst case scenario is I ensure the den DVD player has an optical out so I can use the one coaxial digital in for a feed from my custom home control system.

    As for my 5800, when it does go back for service I may consider the upgrade. Of course that is assuming the problems with my unit can be resolved without replacing the DSP board in the first place. To be honest, the only feature of the upgrade I'm even mildly interested in is DPL II. Having heard it I must say I like it for 2 channel sources.

    All in all, I'm working on this with my dealer who has listened to my complaints since I bought the 5800. Now it's time for him to make good on his customer service, but only time will tell what happens. Keep up the suggestions... I'll start my demos next week.
     
  10. Todd Hochard

    Todd Hochard Cinematographer

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    Dale,

    I've considered both the 4802 and 5803. What are your issues with your 5800?

    Todd
     
  11. Dale_S

    Dale_S Stunt Coordinator

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    Todd,

    My issues with the 5800 are based on what was promised when the unit was sold, and what Denon has delivered to date.

    I bought the 5800 for a couple of reasons. First was to replace my 12 year old Pioneer D1S that didn't have Dolby Digital or DTS capability. Second was the 5800's RS-232 port - I use a custom home control system (not Crestron or Panja) and hence loved the option of being able to control the 5800 with it. Lastly was the promise of upgradeability.

    The 5800 handled the first task without question. The sound from the Denon was and is very pleasing. I did have operability issues based around the lackluster Aktis remote, but since I was going to use my home control system, that shouldn't have been an issue. The Aktis is so poor in my mind that I've programmed most of the required functions into other programmable remotes that I use instead(one handheld and the other an IR emitter on my HTPC/home control hub).

    The RS-232 port is my main point of frustration. As advertised and sold by my dealer (and Denon), this port is supposed to provide both a control function and be useable for upgrades. From day one I was unable to get the RS-232 port to function. I made many attempts at contact with Denon, Panja, Crestron and my dealer and I was left holding a product with a useless RS-232 port.

    It wasn't until late last year that Denon even acknowledged their RS-232 protocol, and as of early January I received a firmware update which finally enabled MOST of the commands listed in the protocol document. Unfortunately it has not corrected all issues, and as such is still somewhat unusable. My recent contact with Denon has yielded no response so I finally told my dealer that it is his responsibility to fix it and he agreed.

    Lastly is the upgrade issue. While I applaud Denon for finally making an upgrade available for the 5800, it is not what I and others expected. Certainly the cost is a lot higher than we had hoped. For most of us, there are too many features included that we will not utilize, at least at the present time.

    It would have been my preference to see a software only upgrade to allow DPL II processing, such as the one Onkyo, Tag McLaren and Meridian provided to their customers. I do know that the receiver is capable of such an upgrade, especially since I've witnessed a firmware upgrade in person. The DSPs on the existing DSP board are definitely powerful enough for DPL II decoding, so that isn't an excuse.

    Nonetheless, the sound and the flexibility offered by the 5800's numerous inputs and outputs make the difference. For these reasons alone I have chosen to tolerate the deficiencies til now. It finally got me though, and hence the reason I am returning my unit to the dealer to be repaired. I don't care what it takes - the unit is still under warranty and as such, it's up to my dealer and Denon to make it right.

    It's just opportunistic that I've also been looking for a bedroom/den receiver, and as such I hope that I won't feel too displaced while I wait for the 5800 to return.

    I hope this answers your questions, but if not, feel free to ask more specific ones and I'll try to answer.
     

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