What's new

Will Probably Need to Replace the SR605...Can Someone Help Choose a New AVR Based on Specific Needs? (1 Viewer)

Kaskade1309

Screenwriter
Joined
Apr 7, 2020
Messages
1,207
Real Name
S
Okay, so, as I asserted in a different thread, our trusty Onkyo 605 -- bought new when it was released and never exhibiting a single hiccup until now -- seems to have succumbed to the HDMI OUT failure, as I can no longer see the setup menu on our Samsung 4K screen when I press the SETUP menu on the remote. We only use the setup menu of the receiver to check settings from time to time, so it's not passing 2160p video through from our UHD BD player (it is an HDMI 1.3-compliant device anyway).

In shopping for a new AVR, I have discovered that the landscape seems to be TOTALLY different now -- many features that I used and enjoyed on our Onkyo are, apparently, no longer available on new models like the RZ50, NR6100 and NR7100, and because these are important to me on a day-to-day basis, I may need to look beyond this brand even though I've been a loyal fan for quite some time. We're now in a bad position, because I don't know what brand of AVR actually offers what I need in a receiver, nor if I can get one any time soon.

First, let me share the following models which I have been considering as a replacement:

- Onkyo TX-NR6100 ($799)
- Onkyo TX-NR7100 ($1099)
- Integra DRX 3.4
- Pioneer VSX-LX105 ($850)

I always said that I would want to go with a Denon if I ever moved beyond Onkyo, but I don't know if they offer any of the features I am looking for, and I keep reading reviews that say the Denons don't sound nearly as good as the Onkyos.

Here's the biggest problem, in a nutshell: The 605 we've been running all these years (and it was the same with the 600 I had before that, years ago) offered something called "IntelliVolume," which allowed you to adjust the preamp stage gain for each individual source connected to the receiver, and this ran on a scale from -12dB to +12dB. This allowed for making sources seem louder at lower master volume levels, and it was a feature I really, really appreciated.

Also, the older Onks offered "Listening Mode Presets" for each individual source, and the screen for this menu on my 605 looked like this:

525x525px-LL-fdd4dc92_vbattach97122.jpeg


From what I understand, both of these features are no longer offered on the new Onkyos, so while I may be able to live without IntelliVolume, the Listening Mode Preset presents a bigger problem because without it, there will be no way for the receiver to process certain soundtracks on discs containing two-channel stereo or mono soundtracks. So, in other words, if I play a DVD that contains a soundtrack in Dolby Digital stereo surround, the new receivers will simply throw the track into the front left and right main channels without any "Pro Logic II" processing, thus it won't play back properly (with dialogue in the center speaker). We have a lot of DVDs and Blu-rays with these types of soundtracks, or even 2.0 mono tracks, so I need an AVR to be able to process these properly so they are sent to the proper speakers.

It seems the hoopla today regarding these AVRs revolves around buzzwords -- DIRAC Live, ApplePlay, etc. -- but to be honest, I am not interested in any of these applications because I have always set up my receivers manually; I am not going to use a phone app to get the DIRAC calibration system working and spend hours upon hours trying to get the EQ just right, and we do no streaming at all, instead watching all cinema content on discs (DVD, Blu-ray, UHD Blu-ray). So what I am looking for in a new receiver is at least 100WPC and solid processing chops (ways to adjust source volume output, process specific signals like two-channel and mono properly, etc.).

Are there ANY brands currently on the market that offer this kind of functionality? Do the Denons have a feature that allows you to adjust the output of each connected source, like Onkyo's IntelliVolume did? Are there listening modes that can be set in the Denons, similar to what you see in the picture above from my Onkyo 605? What about other brands...is the Pioneer VSX-LX105 a worthwhile consideration? Do the Pioneers (I know Pioneer/Onkyo is the same company) offer any features as I am describing, does anyone know?

If I can't find a way to make any new AVR work for my needs, would it be possible to get my 605's HDMI OUT (the only thing that's not functioning properly) repaired somewhere?

Any suggestions or insight would be appreciated.
 

JohnRice

Bounded In a Nutshell
Supporter
Ambassador
Senior HTF Member
Joined
Jun 20, 2000
Messages
15,522
Location
A Mile High
Real Name
John
The input trim adjustment you referred to as "IntelliVolume" is something I haven't seen in receivers in some time. Basically since most sources became digital, that feature seems to have gone away.

Regarding the listening mode presets, I notice that every audio mode is set to "Last Valid". That is how receivers work by default these days. So, when the receiver sees a particular audio format, it automatically goes to the last playback mode you used for that format. In Atmos capable receivers, there is no DPLII anymore. Instead it's just called Dolby Surround and can do many things depending on your setup. The bottom line is, with a two channel source, it does exactly the same thing DPLII does with your 605.

Basically, there is no problem. I just don't think you'll find the input trims you have in the 605.

EDIT: There is an "Input Adjust" but it only has two adjustments. One for all analog inputs and one for all digital inputs. It's not an adjustment for each individual input. I had seen that, but passed over it because that doesn't seem to accomplish the goal.
 
Last edited:

Kaskade1309

Screenwriter
Joined
Apr 7, 2020
Messages
1,207
Real Name
S
The input trim adjustment you referred to as "IntelliVolume" is something I haven't seen in receivers in some time. Basically since most sources became digital, that feature seems to have gone away.
I didn't know that until now; haven't kept up on the tech for many years because our 605 has been running flawlessly.

I believe the new Denons have something called Input Adjust or something like that, which is similar to what I am describing; I am now considering the brand because of this.

IntelliVolume was good to balance all-digital sources, as well; I simply used it as a kind of "gain stage" adjuster, like with old power amps of yesteryear, so I could crank up a given source via IntelliVolume and it would sound loud at a lower overall volume level.
Regarding the listening mode presets, I notice that every audio mode is set to "Last Valid". That is how receivers work by default these days.
That was just a screen grab of what my current AVR's menu looks like -- by default, they're all set to Last Valid, but I have gone in and set individual preferences for my Blu-ray player input, such as 2 Channel - Pro Logic II Movie, Multichannel PCM - Multich, etc. It seems you CANNOT do this with new receivers, and that's an issue for me because we watch a lot of discs that have two-channel soundtracks and which carry two-channel audio even on their trailers, promos and setup menus. What am I going to do, go in every time the disc plays two-channel audio, even for a few moments, and press a button on the receiver's remote? That's not convenient in the least.

You're saying they just come by default these days straight-decoding a signal...so Dolby Digital would be Dolby D, DTS would be DTS, etc...however, the customization of listening modes in my AVR is what I need because of the variety of media we play.
So, when the receiver sees a particular audio format, it automatically goes to the last playback mode you used for that format.
Okay -- so there is no way to specifically assign, say, a mono signal to play back through just the center channel; but does it remember when you, say, used a two-channel upmixing mode like Dolby Surround the last time you played a two-channel soundtrack? If so, THAT would be doable...
In Atmos capable receivers, there is no DPLII anymore. Instead it's just called Dolby Surround and can do many things depending on your setup. The bottom line is, with a two channel source, it does exactly the same thing DPLII does with your 605.
Well, not EXACTLY because it won't detect these tracks automatically and apply some kind of processing like Dolby Surround, correct....I would need to press buttons on the remote EVERY time, right?
Basically, there is no problem. I just don't think you'll find the input trims you have in the 605.
As I said, the Denons (and Marantz receivers) have a feature like this, which appeals to me...so if worse came to worse I'd just move on to another brand. But I'd like to stick with Onkyo because I have had nothing but good luck with their stuff and was always a fan.
 

JohnRice

Bounded In a Nutshell
Supporter
Ambassador
Senior HTF Member
Joined
Jun 20, 2000
Messages
15,522
Location
A Mile High
Real Name
John
You don't seem to be reading what I'm actually writing. Let's say you play a video source with two channel audio. The first time you play a source with two channel audio on a specific input, if it doesn't play it with Dolby Surround, then you simply hit the "Surround" button on your remote until it is playing with Dolby Surround. From then on, every time it is sent a two channel source on that same input, it will automatically play it with Dolby Surround. Most of the time, "mono" soundtracks on video sources are actually two channel mono, so it again will play properly using Dolby Surround and sound will come only from the center speaker.

I double checked on my Marantz SR7012, and I couldn't find any input trims anywhere. Maybe I just didn't look in the right place. I don't recall seeing that in quite a while. That doesn't mean it isn't on anything.
 

JohnRice

Bounded In a Nutshell
Supporter
Ambassador
Senior HTF Member
Joined
Jun 20, 2000
Messages
15,522
Location
A Mile High
Real Name
John
...plus, that way you use this stuff is pretty much the same way most of the rest of us use it. I can't remember the last time I had to change the sound mode of anything.
 

Kaskade1309

Screenwriter
Joined
Apr 7, 2020
Messages
1,207
Real Name
S
You don't seem to be reading what I'm actually writing.
You know, I had you ignore for the longest time here, and now I see why (and I find it interesting -- quite disturbing, actually -- that every time you've insulted me like this in the past, Josh liked your comment).

Was that really NECESSARY to say? To say it like THAT? I am asking honest questions because I have honest reservations about buying something new. Was it necessary to say it like that? You couldn't just say "What I meant was..."

Why did it have to be like that? Maybe I missed something, but we're all human, aren't we? I didn't know it was going to irritate you so much that I misunderstood something you may have said.
Let's say you play a video source with two channel audio. The first time you play a source with two channel audio on a specific input, if it doesn't play it with Dolby Surround, then you simply hit the "Surround" button on your remote until it is playing with Dolby Surround. From then on, every time it is sent a two channel source on that same input, it will automatically play it with Dolby Surround.
THAT'S what I wanted to know. If it DOES auto-detect for the next time, I wouldn't have an issue.

Is this the way it works with ALL modern AVRs pretty much?
Most of the time, "mono" soundtracks on video sources are actually two channel mono, so it again will play properly using Dolby Surround and sound will come only from the center speaker.
Right.
I double checked on my Marantz SR7012, and I couldn't find any input trims anywhere. Maybe I just didn't look in the right place. I don't recall seeing that in quite a while. That doesn't mean it isn't on anything.
From what I have been told elsewhere and from the info I've gathered online, the Denon AVRs DEFINITELY boast such a feature...and the Marantzes were supposed to have it, too.

Thanks for your explanations here, at any rate. If you could confirm that all AVRs do this with regard to auto-detecting the next time a two channel signal is played, I'd get out of your hair and quit irritating you.
 

Kaskade1309

Screenwriter
Joined
Apr 7, 2020
Messages
1,207
Real Name
S
...plus, that way you use this stuff is pretty much the same way most of the rest of us use it. I can't remember the last time I had to change the sound mode of anything.
I'm just telling you that I was TOLD on another forum that EVERY TIME I play a disc with a two-channel soundtrack, I'd have to physically go to the remote and change the mode. I was told it WASN'T automatic.
 

Kaskade1309

Screenwriter
Joined
Apr 7, 2020
Messages
1,207
Real Name
S
I will inconvenience you no longer.
YOU inconvenienced ME? THAT'S what you got from what I said?

You were the one who got snippy with me -- can't you see that? I was merely pointing it out.

It seemed like I was the one who irritated YOU...just because I missed something in your initial reply.

Honestly..,..what is your PROBLEM with me?
 

Josh Steinberg

Premium
Reviewer
Joined
Jun 10, 2003
Messages
22,281
Real Name
Josh Steinberg
and I find it interesting -- quite disturbing, actually -- that every time you've insulted me like this in the past, Josh liked your comment).

I would like to address this.

I am sorry you see it that way.

My “like” is a shorthand for “that’s the technical advice I would have given myself”. There is no animosity or ill will in my comments or post reactions but I do apologize if it was perceived that way.

Here is what I believe to be the answer you are looking for, based on this thread and your prior thread about your older Onkyo.

On the model Onkyo you’re replacing, there is a specific shortcoming in how that receiver processes DTS-HD MA 2.0 tracks - and only DTS-HD MA 2.0 tracks. It does not recognize them as anything other than 2.0 stereo so it only plays them through the left and the right channel. This shortcoming doesn’t impact other formats like Dolby Digital 2.0, DTS 2.0, PCM 2.0, Dolby TrueHD 2.0, etc.

Any modern receiver (that is, a current model) will not have this limitation.

In modern receivers, “Dolby Surround mode” will handle the processing you’re asking about without additional effort. A modern receiver will know to take a 2.0 mono mix and put it in the center channel without needing to be set each and every time. A modern receiver will recognize when a 2.0 mix is a matrixed surround mix and decode it to surround speakers as necessary. A modern receiver will recognize when a 2.0 stereo track is genuinely left/right stereo and steer it just to the left and right speakers when appropriate.

If memory services, in the previous thread about your Onkyo, you had discovered that it wasn’t processing DTS-HD MA 2.0 signals correctly, and I and others pointed out that the solution was to set your Blu-ray player to decode the tracks rather than bitstreaming to the receiver. The advice wasn’t to switch it each time you watched a different disc but rather to permanently leave it set so that the player would decode the audio. You responded that you preferred to bitstream. But that was the sole solution to the issue you described in your thread. I am sorry that it wasn’t the answer you were hoping for, but that was nonetheless the answer.

As some of us said in that thread, and what John reiterated here, is that pretty much any modern receiver by default will do what you’re asking for in terms of decoding 2.0 signals properly.

That is why I liked John’s post, because it conveyed everything I am saying now without me repeating the same advice. John has forgotten more about receivers than I’ll ever know. There are few people more knowledgeable on this topic on this forum than him. I really don’t feel that I can better his advice.

As such, I don’t have any additional advice to offer and will leave it at that. I sincerely wish you success and happiness with whichever receiver you purchase and hope it gives you many, many years of enjoyment. :)
 

lemoncadillac

Auditioning
Joined
Nov 21, 2007
Messages
1
Real Name
Todd
My 2 cents. I would purchase another SR605 used. There are many for sale on that auction site under $200. You know it, you love it. You can't beat that.
Lemon
 

Users who are viewing this thread

Forum Sponsors

Staff online

Forum statistics

Threads
349,606
Messages
4,885,745
Members
142,631
Latest member
dennisgordan
Recent bookmarks
0
Top