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A/V receiver suggestions meeting criteria??

Discussion in 'AV Receivers & Amplifiers' started by SpeakerboxDude, Apr 1, 2004.

  1. SpeakerboxDude

    SpeakerboxDude
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    Does anyone know of any quality A/V receivers that meet the following criteria:

    - Price range 150-270 quid
    - Turntable phono input
    - Coaxial/optical input
    - 4ohms speaker impedence configuration
    - support for at least 5 speakers powering 100watts per speaker
    - excellent playback for music and movies
    - silver casing and sleek looking if possible (lol sorry)
    - new/used doesn't matter

    I'm thinking of Denon 2308 but have read a few reviews which suggest it ain't too good...any suggestions? Thanks
     
  2. Andywilliams

    Andywilliams
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    Hi Dude
    For a budget of £270 max i doubt you will find a amp with all the features that you want,If you could stretch your budget you may be able to pick up a ex demo nad t752 receiver for around £350 this would give you most of the things you listed above.
    Cheers Gonzo.
    PS only the nad t742 comes in silver.
     
  3. Oxfordman

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    The Sony STR-DB790 seems to meet most (if not all) of your criteria. Look at the latest issue Home Cinema Choice: Best budget amp in the 2004 Awards
     
  4. SpeakerboxDude

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    Thanks for the Nad tip Gonzo, it is a little way out of my price range and unfortunately the t742 looks so much nicer in silver than the t752 even if it is a weaker wattage.

    Oxfordman, man you hit the nail right on the head with the Sony STR-DB790 suggestion!! It looks great, loads of input/outpu options, H.C.C. award AND what a price!!! I couldn't believe my eyes when I saw the price for that system. Is it either 90w per channel or 100w per channel because different sites have watt ratings?! Still I think I am going to go with this amp. Nice one, thanks again:D
     
  5. Oxfordman

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    Power Rating of av-amps is a tricky subject! Manufacturers and reviewers rarely agree in their measurements. For what it's worth, the Sony manual states 100 W at 8 ohms and 90 W at 4 ohms. If you do a search in this forum for "Sony STR-DB790" you will find lots of useful info/opinions on this amp/receiver and links to reviews published by several magazines - even a link to download the manual.

    Hope this helps
     
  6. SpeakerboxDude

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    Yeh thanks, I just checked almost all the post on here regarding the Sony 790 :) and my overall impression is that it seems to be very good value for money even if everyone thinks the manual is in 'chinese'. Do you know how well this system performs with regards to music playback because I read somewhere that the 790's music quality is not nearly as good as stereo separates? Cheers
     
  7. Oxfordman

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    Thankfully I found the music quality of the 790 to be as good as that of my old 2ch amp, which is just as well since the 790 has no pre-outs (other than that for the sub-woofer) and I couldn’t therefore use the two amps together (to ensure that on 2ch stereo at least, I wouldn’t be any worse off ). What clinched it for me though was the report in Hi-Fi Choice Magazine by Paul Miller, whose reviews on pure hi-fi matters have served me well for some 20 years! In his tests he found that the 790 “has a sound that puts to shame” two well known and highly regarded 2ch amps retailing at more than £500. In this uncertain world “the ludicrously low asking price” was a risk worth taking, especially as I was at the point of ordering an £800 AV-amp. Of course I don’t know if the more expensive one would have been that much better but I’m happy with what I’ve got! One minor irritation though, there is no separate recording input selector (is this typical for AV amps?) and therefore I can’t record the sound from one source onto my mini-disk while listening to another.

    But as everybody on this forum advises, try to audition the unit if at all possible. I’ve got speakers with 8 ohm nominal impedance so I don’t know how the 790 will perform with 4 ohm speakers. The manual states “be sure to set the Impedance Selector to 4 ohms if you connect even one speaker with a nominal impedance between 4-8 ohms”.
    Good luck in your decision!
     
  8. SpeakerboxDude

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    Oh great I didn't realise you had a 790, from what you say it seems like you are glad you made the choice especially because you saved a hell of alot of money. I did a search for Paul Miller's review but couldn't find a copy of it, do you have a link by any chance? If he really did say that then the 790 is definitely an impressive A/V system and will seriously consider getting one. Thing is I can't really find an A/V receiver competitor to dissaude me from buying the 790.
     
  9. Wasabi

    Wasabi
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    Speakerboxdude,

    The Paul Miller review is here - http://www.cosmic450.com/strdb790hifichoice.pdf

    Do bear in mind, you mentioned that your amp of choice should be 5x100w, well you will notice that Hifi Choice measured 2x112w at 8ohms, but only 5x32w at 8ohms, while HCC measured 5x35w at 8ohms, so just to make you aware that watts really doesn't say a lot. But still 790 is probably the best in the sub 250 MRRP category and the reviews and owners here can confirm its power is plenty.

    Would you consider these 2 amps?

    Onkyo doesn't have many owners in UK (but big in US, Scandinavia, continental Europe and Asia), but the 501 meets all your criterias. First 12 glorious reviews - 501.

    270quid, all the 790 features and quality components + brighter silver casing, adjustable crossover filters, speaker A/B switching, useful cinema filter. But again, maybe the lack of owners here might put you off, which I truly understand, that is not a problem. It is a problem of bad marketing from Onkyo, ;p


    The 2nd amp, which is probably the biggest bargain at the moment, only 259 quid at Richer Sounds, is the Marantz SR-5400, proven a beast with huge power both real world and labs, but more importanly it sounds exceptional good for all sources. For labs results by US mag soundandvisionmag. And Marantz has always been an exception, being a quality 2channel music and 5channel music/films brand. In terms of features, it is not as well equipped as the Onkyo, probably on par with Sony 790. But this amp are usually competing on the class below, the Sony 2000, Yamaha 740, Denon 1804, Onkyo 601, Pioneer 912 etc, but the price has put it in a amazing situation.

    Wasabi
     
  10. SpeakerboxDude

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    Hi Wasabi, thanks for all those tips and the Paul Miller review. The main reason why I like these forums is because you get first-hand user opinions that can be relied upon. Also it enables you to weigh up the pros and cons of any equipment from user opinions. This cannot be said with magazine reviews, the more I read them the less I trust them. You emphasised the point that one magazine will value an amp with a certain spec. while another will have a completely different value. Don't get me wrong, they do give us users an idea of the products but I don't think we can totally rely on them.

    A product that gets a 90% review rating suggests that the review should contain at least several sentences of praise. But if you read Miller's review carefully there really isn't that much praise. Nevertheless I am still convinced the Sony 790 is my choice :)

    I regard Onkyo as an extremely good company with a great global reputation, unfortunately as you have said, it really isn't marketed much in the U.K. I was originally going to buy Onkyo's 650 all in one system or the 760 (I think it is). Onkyo's all in one systems have received so many great reviews in the U.S. especially because they are value for money. But after reading so much regarding A/V systems, I think it is better to go via the seperates route due to versatility.

    Unfortunately, those two amps: Onkyo/Marantz do not have the phono-input option that I definitely require. If they did, I would seriously consider getting them.

    EDIT: what's everyone's opinion on the DENON AVR1804 as it seems like it has a hell of alot of features and am sure I can get it for a bit under £300.
     
  11. SpeakerboxDude

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    Ok guys I've decided on the Sony STR-DB790, hope it's the right one...thanks again for all your great input :smashin:
     

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