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AVR300 - is it really that much better?

Discussion in 'Arcam Owners' Forum' started by Roohster, Sep 2, 2004.

  1. Roohster

    Roohster
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    Many questions...

    I'm thinking of upgrading from my AVR 200 to the 300....
    but is it REALLY that much better?

    When the AVR200 came out (not THAT long ago!) it got rave reviews, and now it only merits 2 stars in What Hifi :mad:
    Will the 300 meet the same fate when the 400 comes out?

    I'm not that bothered about 7.1 and would probably use the extra channels to bi-amp. Is it a vast improvement?

    The component switching and up conversion appeals - does this work well by the way?
    Or would I be better off getting an RGB - component converter for my SKY+ box?

    I've noticed a lot of "teething problems" listed on these forums - have they all been sorted?

    Finally - anyone seen any "deals" on the AVR300?
    Hi-Spek in St. Albans list it at £999 in this months Home Cinema Choice (but it's £1,300 on their website).
    My credit card has taken a hammering lately, so I'd quite like to get 0% finance. :)

    Sorry there are so many questions, but it's a big investment for me!
     
  2. barnythebear

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    I noticed the same thing on the Hi-spec page and when I spoke to them it was a typo. They were prepared to discount other bits bought with the AV300 but not to discount it when I called in on them.
     
  3. RaceTripper

    RaceTripper
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    I had an AVR200 for about 18 months, and I thought it was great.

    Upgraded to AVR300 when it came out in May. It's not better, it's way better. It's defintely big bang for the difference in price. Arcam really did a nice job creating it.

    While the AVR200 is definitely a good receiver, I couldn't imaging going back now that I've had the 300 for awhile.

    Dean
     
  4. Roohster

    Roohster
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    I thought there was some law where you had to sell at the advertised price?
    Or is that just an urban myth?
    It's been in all the magazines for three months in a row, so it's hardly just a "typo".
     
  5. Roohster

    Roohster
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    Out of interest Dean, what did you get for your AVR200 when you sold it?
    I'm very tempted now.....
     
  6. Spoonfed

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    im asking this same quesion...... i can get an AVR300 at about 24% discount which is pretty good ($3000 AUD) BUT is the AVR300 "really" worth the 25% extra over what i can get a 3805 for?

    (i think its easier to talk in % terms due to currencies etc.... then we can draw conclusions)

    Id be interested to hear what % difference the AVR300 is over the 3805 in the UK
    (ie what it can be "HAD" for not "list" price)
     
  7. RaceTripper

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    My dealer took it off my hands. Their deal is, if you want to trade up something you bought from them, and it's a current model, they'll give you 80% of purchase price in trade for the new kit at retail price.

    I got the AVR200 for 10% off retail. So I got $863 (1199 * .9 * .8) for the AVR200, towards the AVR300 at $1999. So I paid $1136 to get the AVR300. And it is worth it to me. AVR300 is a drastic improvement.

    I could have sold the AVR200 myself and received 10% off the AVR300, but the trade was easy for me. And since then the retail in the US has gone up to $2199. So I'm not cryin'.

    Dean
     
  8. Spoonfed

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    So im doin pretty good getting 25% off an AVR300 then? :)
    (3700 down to 3000AUD (thats Australian "we get shafted" dollars))

    I thort the AVR300 was way over priced here.... but percentage wise compared to the 3805 its actually LESS % expensive than in the UK and US!!!

    dwette,

    Did you audition anything else in comparison to the AVR300? Was it a "big" improvement over "errrm" the "anything else" :)?
     
  9. RaceTripper

    RaceTripper
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    Nope. The AVR200 is a great receiver. I pre-ordered the AVR300 blind, trusting it would be even better. I am not disppointed, and in fact, got more than expected. But if I had been unhappy, my dealer would have taken it back.
     
  10. Roohster

    Roohster
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    Ok, convinced that its probably worth the upgrade...
    now, how about the rest of my questions:

    I'm not that bothered about 7.1 and would probably use the extra channels to bi-amp. Is it a vast improvement?

    The component switching and up conversion appeals - does this work well by the way?
    Or would I be better off getting an RGB - component converter for my SKY+ box?

    I've noticed a lot of "teething problems" listed on these forums - have they all been sorted?

    Finally - anyone seen any "deals" on the AVR300?
     
  11. Barend

    Barend
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    Video upconverting does nothing to improve the picture, it's just for convenience.
    RGB-2-YUV converters are either grossly overpriced or rather mediocre, I never saw any difference using my CPC unit (www.cpc.co.uk - SCART in- YUV out) instead of feeding my sat box through composite.
    Double screened (note I did NOT write highend nor expensive!) cabling DOES make a difference though.
    No important teething probs here, not before nor after the 2.84 upgrade, only small stuff most other manufacturers wouldn't even bother to correct.
    In fact, the Denon 3805 I owned had its quirks as well...
    Barend
     
  12. RaceTripper

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    The AVR300 software is pretty solid. Earlier versions had some issues, but none of them were showstoppers to prevent you getting use out of it.

    The latest version (2.84) has an issue playing DTS on a 5.1 setup (as reported elsewhere in this forum), but I know for a fact that Arcam has made fixing it a priority, and you can bet from past experience an update to correct it will be available soon.

    No surround processor DSP/Control software will be perfect (that's just the nature of software engineering), but the AVR300 software is really pretty robust and correct for day to day use.

    I've had my AVR300 since the first units shipped (probably had one of the first US prod units), and no software issue has ever stood in the way of me enjoying it.
     
  13. calli

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    HI There,

    I just bought a Rotel RSX1056 wich i compared with the AVR300
    IMO the rotel is better in Stereo as well as surround but has
    only 5 amps. This is only my opinion but I would advise you
    to listen both off them. The rotel is a more dynamic
    receiver I mean.


    Greetings from Holland, :hiya:
     
  14. mrkeeling

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    To ad a little gasoline to your fire ;)

    I had the same dilemma, so I went to my dealer and did some listening. Keep in mind that hi-res music is most important to me so I compared AVR200 and AVR300 using only 5.1 analog inputs (using the same source). I do not care about video switching, DD/DTS decoding, DSP modes etc.

    Well, if there was a difference, it was subtle. It definitely didn’t justify spending the money and upgrading to AVR300 for me.

    I decided to go P85/3 route. :clap:

    :beer:
     
  15. Spoonfed

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    haha sounds like me and my ole Denon AVR1602........ have borrowed both a 3805 and AVR300...... yes there is a difference.... to me suttle...... i don't think worth $2250 and $3000AUD respectively (disapointed as i was expecting much more)

    I think the biggest "noticable" improvement is what the 3805's auto/EX thingy did to movies (didn't like 2ch with it but)

    MRKEELING,

    Excatly what i am thinking.... to really "notice" that jump each and everytime one has to some how incorporate the "decent" Hi-Fi 2 channel gear..... i guess it depends on the individual also.
     
  16. Barend

    Barend
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    Although IMO only home listening is really worthwile, I can imagine real sound quality may not be much better, because it is really excellent on the 300, and Arcam always puts sound richness first. So if you're not interested in the video & surround extras, why upgrade?
    Enjoy your AVR200 and be happy!
    (Maybe do yourself a favor and biamp the fronts with an outboard final, or doesn't the 200 have preouts? Hint- Rotels have fine bass and are often on the 2nd hand market like Ebay).
    Barend :hiya:
     
  17. John Dawson

    John Dawson
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    The AVR200 has a full set (5 plus sub) of preamp outputs, at a level that allows you to biamp with an Arcam power amp such as the A90/3 across the front 3 channels.

    John Dawson (Arcam)
     
  18. Spoonfed

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    miss information deleted John (sorry) - must have got confused with the upcoming AVR250.... which "i think" doesn't ???
     
  19. mrkeeling

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    That’s exactly what I’m going to do. I am picking up P85/3 this Thursday and adding it to my AVR200 (either to bi-amp my fronts or to drive my front stage exclusively – whichever yields better results).

    Hopefully I’ll be able to find some BFA plugs around here for P85
    :beer:
     
  20. Roohster

    Roohster
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    Hmm, think I might hold out for the AVR400 which can't be too far away ;)
    150 watts? HDMI switching? 9.1?
    Seriously though, I'd be interested to hear the results of your power amping/bi-amping ....
     
  21. fredrikolsson

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    " have borrowed both a 3805 and AVR300...... yes there is a difference.... to me suttle......"


    Umm... the AVR300 is like 10 times better than the Denon, to me they are like day and night.
     
  22. Crustyloafer

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    It's just an urban myth. You will nearly always see the letters "E.&O.E." at the footnote of an advert. A description of this is below:


    Errors and Omissions Excepted (E.&O.E.)

    The error and omission of words may occur in the preparation of quotation and other export documents. A quotation is considered contractually binding in international trade. Export documents, such as the commercial invoice and the packing list, are legal documents. The purpose of adding the acronym E.&O.E. to the documents is to disclaim final responsibility for typographical errors and unintentional omissions.

    In practice, most buyers are understanding in the event of an error and omission in the quotation and they will unconditionally accept a revision, despite lack of the acronym E.&O.E.. However, some persistent buyers would take the error as is, if it is to their advantage, for example a mistake in typing the price of product X as US$7, which should have been US$8. In order to please an insistent buyer in such a situation, sometimes the exporter may split the price difference and accept US$7.50.

    The exporter should examine the quotation and documents carefully before sending them, to avoid jeopardizing profits and customer relationships.
     
  23. Barend

    Barend
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    AVR 300 sound is way better than the Denon, but the headroom is rather poor IMO.
    Still, I enjoyed the very musical sound quality as long as I didn't turn up the volume too far; it was partly overloading effects in the preamp section I remember.
    Also the software remained flaky no matter how many upgrades I applied, I remember it was quite irritating to see it switch off by itself or lighting all the LEDs (and becoming inoperable) for no apparent reason.
    High dynamics such as SACD discs can sound congested.
    Not enough bare power it seemed to me; current Marantz SR9600 has deeper bass and more headroom, just had an Outlaw Audio 7x200W prepro (990+1770) in, I feel that's the way to go.
    My 3805 had hum when biamping, and the sound was OK as far as HT was concerned, less so for serious music listening.
    Maybe the 3805 fares better?
    But don't count on it, as the Japanese don't seem to give a rat's a*s for what customers think.
     
  24. crobo

    crobo
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    If I remember correctly, the P85 and A85 do not use BFA adaptors. Might be wrong though; I sold mine a while ago.
     
  25. rover2002

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    Made in China with poor factory quality control.So yes if your selling these at mark up prices as we no most do, but no if your a consumer looking for something that won't have issues.
     
  26. Crustyloafer

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    I understand you have a had a few bad experiences Rover, but to be honest I think you are in the minority when it comes to having problems with the AVR300. To date I have sold probably 20-30 of these units at least and have only had one faulty unit so far.
     
  27. rover2002

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    As a retailer i expect you to say exactly that.If i were to say "well Crusty to be honest i know more than a dozen people who have had issues, i'd have to say your in the minority", would that make me more credible as a consumer? or only as credible as a retailer:D
     

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