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£1800 Budget. What to do with it?

Discussion in 'AV Pre-Amp/Processors & Power Amps' started by Henry, Dec 31, 2004.

  1. Henry

    Henry
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    I'm seriously thinking about upgrading from my Denon AVC-10SE which is the last old bit of kit I have. Got a budget of about £1800 at the moment and looking to get some ideas of how I could best spend it.

    Not too bothered about 6.1 or 7.1 at the moment as my room isn't really big enough for it but would like to have the option in the future.

    Current kit:

    Arcam DV79
    Denon AVC10SE
    M&K K17 fronts
    M&K K4 Tripole rears
    M&K V1250 THX Select

    Stereo reproduction isn't that important to me really. It's main use (95%) will be Home Cinema.

    Any ideas, suggestions, etc much appreciated!

    Henry

    PS Happy New Year to everyone and don't get too :beer: tonight!
     
  2. Wannabe-THX

    Wannabe-THX
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    I would go for the Rotel 1066 and 1075 amp. And then you will still have some money left after. ;)

    Fish
     
  3. rags

    rags
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    I would consider changing the sub atm and thats all. Your system reads like a good list as it is.
     
  4. Henry

    Henry
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    Why would you change the sub?
     
  5. rags

    rags
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    I didnt say you have to change. Your equipment is very well matched in terms of performance.

    You have £1800 to spend and in terms of your equipment -

    1. Arcam DV79 - I have one myself and it doesnt get much better (unless of course you spend a lot more money).
    2. M&K K series - whilst I have never been a big fan of the K series apart from the K4 tripoles which I like very much, they are still very good home cinema speakers.
    3. Denon A10SE - its not the most upto date amp around but it has more than enough power to drive the M&K's to good levels. Buy changing it for another integrated you really wont significantly improve on the amplification side of things (well not enough to justify the extra dosh). In anycase you dont need better amplification for the speakers you have. In terms or processing you may be missing out on the latest formats and you should only consider changing if you really need them.
    4. Subwoofer - I feel this is one of the most important components of a HC system. M&K make good subwoofers but you can improve on the M&K V1250 significantly. If this was my system and I had cash burning a hole in my pocket this is what a would change first. Its very difficult for anyone to judge your system without listening to it - only you can realistically determine what the weak point in your system is - if its not the sub then keep it.
     
  6. whats_this

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    Just my thoughts, but i would agree with rags that the sub is one of the most important part of the film and feeling the film.

    However i would not spend £1800 on a sub (although that's probably not what rags is telling you to do) when you can pick up a svs ultra for around £950, maybe less. Have a look in the svs forum and most will agree an Ultra will give a lot of subs costing you £1800 a very gd run for their money. Fair enough their not pretty to look at but you get the best value for money IMO.

    That would leave you with a very healthy budget for a second hand power amp. I've seen parasound 2205at's go for about that and would give you quality amplification for the money (a big step up from the denon i would imagine, but im sure someone will confirm for you), or save a little more and get something else. (using your denon as processor and pre outs to the Power amp)

    I imagine that would give your system a massive jump in performance, a lot from the sub but control in the amp, lower volumes, and detail would all improve.

    Then when you've saved a bit more, you can sell your denon, and get yourself a quality processor to finish a pretty comprehensive system upgrade.

    Have gone a bit over budget to try and get the best of both worlds and to try and get value for money.

    Anyway good luck with the choices, Seriously sucks when you have to choose one or the other. I had a £900 budget and i had to choose between a budget projector and a quality sub. But with £900 i couldn’t really get both. I was just about ready to order an svs ultra, but found a second hand 20-39+ and saved myself £400. A month later i found a second hand Hitachi tx100 for £650. Now i have both.

    The moral of the story - Second hand you can have your cake and eat it too.

    Anyway good luck with your choice and hope you are happy with whatever you decide on. Just to make sure you know, although im sure you do. There are plenty of av enthusiasts on the forums usually more than happy to let you demo their set ups, Best way to decide is always to demo, have a post in the svs forum and i imagine someone will be more than happy for you to demo their svs or try and find a dealer who will loan you a power amp.
     
  7. rags

    rags
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    I dont think there is significant benefit to be derived by adding a big power amp to your K series speakers over your A10SE - the amplification you have is good enough to run the K series. If anything I would consider changing your front three speakers first before upgrading the amplification (if thats what you want to do). As some members will testify, the A10SE can handle a lot of speaker.

    Now if your asking how to upgrade your whole system or you intend to upgrade your speakers at some point then thats a different story.
     
  8. Henry

    Henry
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    It's a relatively small room and cupboards, doors and windows mean that I needed some "small" speakers. I'm quite happy with the speakers. They may not be the best out there, but they were the best that I heard and that matched the logistical requirements of the room.

    They are certainly a huge step up from what I had before and I can't see myself changing the speakers unless something else hits the market that is of a small enough size and appreciably better sound.

    I accept that I have introduced an element of compromise into my system by stipulating "small" speakers but without serious structural alteration to the house, I couldn't do much more and spent along time listening to various speakers before settling on the K series. I just didn't find anything that compared with them at that size and whilst there was better on the market they were just too big to fit into the room. It's not that the room per se is too small it's more that it's layout is such that means it wouldn't be practical to have much bigger speakers. Sadly. :thumbsdow

    Having said that, I'm still looking to get the best possible sound that I can and given the age of my amp it seemed the logical place to start. Although, I don't think that there's anything wrong with the sound but am looking to improve it. The idea of a processor and power amp(s) seemed again a logical next step and offered more logical future upgrade paths - but maybe I've just got a case of "upgraditis"!

    I'd expect some serious time auditioning anything before considering adding it to my system and would be quite happy if I couldn't find anything that offered a significant improvement. At least that way I'd know that what I'd got compared favourably with whats out there. But then the grass is always greener...
     
  9. gizlaroc

    gizlaroc
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    I think you need to upgrade your processing and amplification.

    I had a Denon A1-SE which was the big brother to the 10/11se, and I changed to a Lexicon DC2 and parasound power amp, and this was a big improvemnet. This was using Kef in wall speakers too, which the A1 could drive very well, but the sperate route just did it all better.
    The Parasound was a 855A which is only rated at 80w per channel compared with the 140w per channel of the A1SE. then changed for a Parasound 2205, and this was an incredible improvement, the whole soundstage just opened up completey, rather than 7 speakers, for the first time I had a room of sound.

    Then bought a Meridian 568.2 processor, this was without doubt the upgrade that made me smile the most, I could not believe how much difference some processing could make, it wasn't until I tried some Tag stuff, and hated it, that I realised how different my system could sound by changing a processor.
     
  10. VirusKiller

    VirusKiller
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    Worth mentioning that when I sold my Meridian 561, I installed it for the buyer in a very high-end set-up (£5K Infinity fronts with active bass).

    The sheer integrity of the sound-field and sound steering was stunning and I can only believe this came from time- and phase-aligned compensation (based on speaker distance, size and location) that is part of the Meridian's setup process.

    Meridian kit is great in a mid-end system, but absolutely flies in a high-end one.
     

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