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PostPosted: Mon Mar 21, 2016 12:00 pm 
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Joined: Mon Aug 26, 2013 11:20 am
Posts: 9
Location: Toronto, ON, CA
Hello,

I’m looking to buy a new home theatre receiver, which would get used about 50/50 time as surround and as a two channel system. I’m trying to get a sense on how much of a difference I will see between something like a the lower end of an NAD (like a T748) or something by Anthem or Emotiva versus big named brands that I could buy for a little cheaper (Denon, Pioneer, Onkyo) and direct some of the savings towards speakers. I’m looking to spend not much more than $1000 on the receiver, could always spend less! Could maybe be convinced to spend a little more. Would ideally buy new, but could also buy used.

I don’t need a lot of bells and whistles. Will only really have one source hooked up to it. Would sometimes carry 3D signals via HDMI, but if the HDMI on a unit doesn’t support that, I’m happy to bypass the video and patch audio in optically. Airplay, network, spotify.... don’t need these. Not certain on whether I need/want room correction. Coming mostly from a 2-channel background and knowledge of things, I’m dubious of EQs and processing, but I understand that home theatre is a different beast. So maybe that would be good to have. Only need 5.1, but wouldn’t pass up considering the right 7.1 model. Would also really prefer for have 5.1 full surround pre-outs, just for the options of patching in a different amp.

It’s for a midsize/large-ish room, but won’t ever really need to be cranked at full capacity. Would only ever be for modest listening volumes (viewing/listening room in a work setting). That said, I do value/desire clarity and clearness in the sound with good tonal balance and imaging. And while I don’t need a lot of power, I do want it to have enough bang to drive a wide range of speakers.

I don’t actually have speakers selected for this yet. Ha! which maybe is the wrong way to go about it. But I’m trying to figure out a receiver budget so i can determine how much is left for speakers. It will be mini-monitors/bookshelves. no stand mounts. Something like Paradigm or NHT.


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PostPosted: Mon Mar 21, 2016 12:42 pm 
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Joined: Wed Jun 08, 2011 5:40 am
Posts: 224
Location: casselman, ON, CA
Nad and Anthem receivers are good depends on your ears and if you want music or movie performance. Nad is better for music and it offers a 2 channel bypass mode that Anthem doesn't .....
Don't sink in big bucks on a receiver not worth it at all , the Nad T748 as pre outs so you can add a power amp if more power is required .


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PostPosted: Mon Mar 21, 2016 1:09 pm 
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Joined: Thu Apr 08, 2010 4:17 pm
Posts: 262
Location: Chilliwack, BC, CA
here is my personal ratings

1) Yamaha
2) Denon
3) Pioneer
4) Onkyo

Marantz and Anthem figures in there somewhere

I would suggest Yamaha Aventage line RX-A1050 or RX-A2050 or RX-A3050

or maybe see if any places have any RX-A1040 or RX-A2040 or RX-A3040...for deep discounts


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PostPosted: Mon Mar 21, 2016 1:12 pm 
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Joined: Fri Jan 21, 2005 2:48 pm
Posts: 2313
Location: West GTA, ON, CA
First off, 5.1 is "processed sound" and is best for action/ blockbuster movies (Insert John Candy saying "Blowed up, blowed up good!). If your movie watching is in the drama vein, then 2 channel works just fine, thank you.

If you must have an AVR and HDMI is not an issue, then a used 5.1 Arcam, Rotel or Anthem would be a good bet. They are quite inexpensive, sound decent and work fine for HT, especially if you only have DVDs. If you want to have HDMI, then a used NAD, Rotel or Anthem would be a good bet. Anthem sounds the best in my experience, but the others are close. If you can find a used AVR with the features you want, then you can same yourself some money.

Setting up an AVR does take some time and research. You NEED a sound pressure meter and a tape measure. Since the idea is to have the sound reach the listening position at the same time. Given the variations in speaker distances, you need some processing to manage the time delays. Done right, HT can sound impressive and immersive. However, it does take a bit of time to do it right.


Last edited by Vinyl Guy on Fri Jan 20, 2017 1:06 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Mon Mar 21, 2016 1:17 pm 
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Joined: Sun Jul 22, 2007 10:10 am
Posts: 105
Location: Williams Lake, BC, CA
My 2 cents worth of advice. I have gone from 2ch to 5.1 and back to 2ch. Given a reasonable 3k budget you can get something that will provide a lifetime of musical enjoyment(about the price of a decent mountain bike), and still perform quite well in a movie/tv role. HDMI switches are inexpensive if multiple sources are needed, or just get a tv that has multiple HDMI switching built in.

A home theater system that can do real justice to music tends to be expensive(separates). Also receivers from the musical companies seem plagued with HDMI handshaking issues(NAD), reliability issues(ARCAM/Onkyo), and they all get left in the dust as new technology emerges(see how much a 2k receiver is worth in 3-4 years).

You should hear how good a Laptop(JRiver)>USB>Yamaha A-S801>MA Silver 6 is for music. Or steaming movies Andriod TV>PLEX>Optical>A-S801>MA Silver 6. This is just one combination that works, substitute ANY decent DAC/Integrated with a pair of the many fine speakers choices today that are outright bargains from Focal, PSB, Salk, Klipsch, Monitor Audio, Dali, Kef, DefTech and B&W to name a few.

I think for a 50/50 music/tv or biased to music system 2ch is the way to go. For a family of cell phone mp3 users then a decent bluetooth enabled receiver in 5.1 would be my advised direction.

Cheers!


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PostPosted: Mon Mar 21, 2016 1:44 pm 
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Joined: Sun Aug 02, 2015 7:25 am
Posts: 57
Location: toronto, ON, CA
I'm currently using my 2003 Yamaha HTR as the DAC and preamp for my 2channel system, and the heart of the home theatre setup. it's got this handy "direct stereo" mode which turns off all the DSP and eq and I have my 2ch power amp connected to the main L&R preamp outputs. when I want 2 channel music, I turn off the speakers on the HTR, fire up the stereo amplifier, and put the HTR in 'direct stereo' mode. The 13-year-old DAC is surprisingly good, handles 24-bit 192khz streams. the HTR handles only 720p component video, but has plenty of optical and coax digital audio inputs, so I've no plans to replace it....although I have experience with some of Yamaha's newer HTRs which can be controlled via android app and have hundreds of free streaming radio channels....as well you can stream music directly to them over the network, which is really handy.


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PostPosted: Mon Mar 21, 2016 1:51 pm 
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Joined: Sat Apr 18, 2015 7:35 am
Posts: 81
Location: Sarnia, ON, CA
One thing I do have experience with is AVR's .. I've had em all lol .. denon, yamaha .. anthem.. Onyko .. you name it . By far the most impressive is my present one a Marantz SR-7008. It does have great room correction and you sure don't need tape measures to get the sound right.

I believe you can get for about $800 now, pretty hard to beat for 9.2

Bonus is it has 3 zones and airplay so friends can sit around my pool and take turns playing tunes they like.


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PostPosted: Mon Mar 21, 2016 2:17 pm 
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Joined: Fri Jan 21, 2005 2:48 pm
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Location: West GTA, ON, CA
Quote:
It does have great room correction and you sure don't need tape measures to get the sound right.

Granted most modern AVRs have built in sound setup and while this is a good starting point, additional tweaking is often required to get the best possible from the unit.

In terms of handshake issues, it seems every modern AVR has these issues. These issues range from a gap of a second or two to complete failure within the warranty period. I am fortunate that my NAD works reasonably well with only minor dropouts, which do not bother me.


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PostPosted: Mon Mar 21, 2016 2:38 pm 
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Joined: Tue Oct 04, 2005 3:56 pm
Posts: 1158
Location: Markham, ON, CA
The no.1 thing you should be looking for in an AVR is.... Reliability !

The two that're with me for the longest time were Marantz and Anthem. You can't go wrong between these two.

An used Anthem MRX-500 can be had here on CAM for like $700? ARC is the best room correction I've had by a wide margin.


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PostPosted: Mon Mar 21, 2016 2:42 pm 
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Joined: Sat Feb 02, 2013 12:19 pm
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Location: Toronto, ON, CA
My Pioneer SC-07 has been on 24/7 and is used 8+ hours a day since 2009 without issue.


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PostPosted: Mon Mar 21, 2016 4:40 pm 
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Joined: Fri Jan 01, 2010 5:27 am
Posts: 256
Location: Ottawa, ON, CA
I recently switched from 2 channel sound to 5.1 setup.
I am a total convert to surround sound. SACD's in multichannel recordings are just special and very enjoyable. Movies are so much more fun in surround.

Also, prior to that I bought a Marantz SR5008, with HDMI and streaming. It was in $1000 price range 2-3 years ago.

I would strongly recommend that you go for a bit older pre/pro and separate amp. My Marantz SR 5008 really offers a lot for a 1000 bucks, but........the sound was/still is (in my second system) horrid. Receivers do offer a lot, but also designers have to cut corners in order to pack all of the functionality in the single box. One of the issues is overheating, if you push it a bit, it runs out of power really quickly. Another option on receiver to consider it to have a pre-out. In that case you can add external amp if needed/wanted.

If a receiver is the only option - choose some sensitive speakers - so it will not put to much strain on the amp section of receiver.

Happy listening.


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PostPosted: Mon Mar 21, 2016 5:04 pm 
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Joined: Thu Jan 31, 2008 12:07 am
Posts: 44
Location: Calgary, AB, CA
darcman wrote:
here is my personal ratings

1) Yamaha
2) Denon
3) Pioneer
4) Onkyo

Marantz and Anthem figures in there somewhere

I would suggest Yamaha Aventage line RX-A1050 or RX-A2050 or RX-A3050

or maybe see if any places have any RX-A1040 or RX-A2040 or RX-A3040...for deep discounts


I mostly agree with the above list but I would leave Onkyo out; pretend you've never heard of them. I have two with issues, one with the oh-so-common failed HDMI board. Yamaha, on the other hand, has always been reliable for me and I currently use one in the kids' HT. Marantz has also been good to me for HT. If your funds permitted I'd recommend Anthem, but if it's tight I'd recommend a Yamaha (used even) and decent speakers, such as the ones you mentioned. In today's world of ever-new codecs good speakers will long outlive an HT receiver.


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PostPosted: Mon Mar 21, 2016 5:21 pm 
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Joined: Sat Jan 24, 2009 3:36 pm
Posts: 3644
Location: Vernon, BC, CA
Go for a used Anthem AVR. If you had a bigger budget I would recommend older Parasound seperates. Ive been HT free for about 4 years so things might have changed a bit.


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PostPosted: Mon Mar 21, 2016 5:35 pm 
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Location: Welland, ON, CA
This is a decent deal.

http://www.canuckaudiomart.com/details/ ... will-ship/

Also Gibby's audio/video, out of St Catharines sells online. A couple of weeks ago they had brand new Marantz 7008 receivers on sale for $800. Not sure if the deal is still available. Really tough to beat for that price.

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PostPosted: Mon Mar 21, 2016 6:40 pm 
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Joined: Fri Jun 13, 2008 9:14 am
Posts: 1461
Location: St.Catharines, ON, CA
If you do buy an Anthem you will need Windows to set up ARC..not Mac compatible...


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