Build quality of receivers

Discussion in 'AV Receivers & Amplifiers' started by phils_wicked, Aug 23, 2016.

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  1. phils_wicked

    phils_wicked
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    Hi all, slight rant and question.

    Is anyone else getting fed up at the build quality of modern receivers? I don't mean the electrical innards (apart from shoddy 'HDMI sockets...) but rather the lack of well built chassis and fascia's. It has become a real thorn in my side, looking at items which cost a fair sum of hard earned money, only to be put off by tinny cases and plasticy fascia's and dials, regardless of sound quality and features.

    I have actually just passed on a Sony 860 due to an intermittent 'HDMI fault to a lad with the AV bug and replaced it with an old Yamaha 757 (non 'HDMI DD+ etc) and am stunned at just how much better the build quality is.

    Anyone else? Lol
     
  2. Mr Pleasant

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    I heartily agree. I still have a Denon AVC-10SE which I bought around fifteen years ago (second hand) and absolutely everything about its build is magnificent. Even after all these years the buttons and dials feel gloriously smooth and positive. There is no trace of wear and tear. When I visit hi fi shops and play with the dials and buttons on the display items - even the pricey ones - they feel like toys in comparison. I suppose we live in a world of such rapid tech change that there's an assumption no one will be keeping kit longer than five years or so. Why not cut costs and build something that will just about survive that length of time in the average set up? I've pretty much resigned myself to a massive drop in owner satisfaction when the time comes to replace the Denon. Sad but true.
     
  3. dante01

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    Things went downhill after the financial crash of 2009. Many manufacturers simply cut their materials back and used less dirable options or thinner gauge metal in order to try save money or because many of the resources needed were scarce. Many haven't really started to use better materials since then and still persist in useing the cheaper options. Anyway, if they do revert back to using more robust materials then prices will increase. Yamaha probably make the best built mainstream receivers, but you do pay a slight premium over their competitors for this superior build quality.
     
  4. Justiintime

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    Pioneer?? Onkyo RZ Line? Yamaha Full aluminum ftontpanels.
    So no I don't think it's bad at the moment.

    The mid range between 2009 2013 were a lot of plastic with Onkyo. But they are coming back from it

    D+M Build quality is very bad. Squeaky front panel doors.
     
  5. dante01

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    Build quality isn't as good as it once was. Denon's high end receivers for example use plastic dials and the gauge of the metal used for their casing is thinner than was once used. I've had a Denon receiver delivered to me that had a twisted chassis. I know couriers aren't that attentive when it comes to handling goods, but I think the damage was more due to how the receiver was constructed than how the courier handled it? There are no benefits to using cheaper materials or less substantial ones other than to reduce the cost of manufacturing and the manufacturers are using cheaper materials or less substantial options to mantain their profit margins as opposed to giving consumers anything they might benefit from.

    All the manufacturer use aluminium for the front faceplate on their upper tier receivers. Doing so doesn't mean that the rest of the receiver is up to par when it comes to their construction or the materials used.
     
  6. Justiintime

    Justiintime
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    From what I have seen and remember only the Denon 7200 has full aluminum front and lower models. Plastic with aluminum door.
     
  7. dante01

    dante01
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    No. all models from the AVRX4200 (now replaced by the AVRX4300) upward include aluminium front faceplates. Every model however uses plastic for the dials.
     
  8. Electric Mayhem

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    They certainly don't seem to build them like they used to even though they sound great. I'm quite surprised how light and flimsy my Marantz SR7010 is for a 'Flagship' AVR. My Denon DVD player would flatten it. o_O:D
     
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  9. Spligsey

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    I actually miss the battleship build of yesterday year, there was something about a big lump of metal. I just picked up a used Onkyo TX-NR5010, which isn't too bad.
    The best built bit of equipment i have is my Pioneer DV-S9 DVD player - stupendous build :love:
     
  10. ashenfie

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    It's not the physical build thats the issue, it's the components used. My old Onkyo had many under spec'ed components. Needless to to say it failed and I had to replace components using the correct ones.

    Not sure what their kit is like these days. I went yamaha on the idea of it have less short cuts in design, all good so far.
     
  11. KRW

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    I loved my Onkyo 805, 25+kg of tank and all metal. My current Pioneer is no slouch though, but I'd happily put up with a plastic case if they could get those speaker connections on the back a bit more user friendly.
     
  12. High Fidelity

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    My well built Sony STR-DA5400ES ( 2008) has failed ) part unavailable
     
  13. Buckster

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    yup the build quality of my Denon 7200 is no-where near that of my Pioneer AX10Ai (34kg!)

    I was so impressed when I took apart (to change a fuse) that I took some pictures - thats all copper -and those capacitors look much bigger in person

    still- the Denon sounds about on par thankfully

    I think even my way-back Pioneer mid-range 2011 had better build quality than my current Denon
     

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  14. MrSpark

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    Interesting topic. In my experience I've found a general decline in the quality of consumer electronics over the last decade. Wether that be the effort a manufacture puts into the feature set and how buggy it is or overall component quality. I know Panasonic were caught out a few years ago by a Chinese supplier switching components for substandard ones halfway through a product cycle. AVR wise I think Yamaha are still knocking out very high quality units. I know a couple of dealers who avoid Denon/ Marantz (plus a few others) because they get too many returns these days, where as a few years back those system were fine quality wise.
     
  15. JH4

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    Interesting ( old ) thread. My trusty Denon AVC-A1XVA is still going strong after 11 years, weighing in at a back-breaking 44Kg. I wonder if the 2018 models will last that long.. Anyone else got an old Denon that is still in use after that long ?
     
  16. jobseeker

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    Denon AVC A1SE
     
  17. ktmkid

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    My beloved Onkyo 906 has HDMI failure. My denon 5200 dose seem Built on the cheap. But my old Pioneer Ax5i has been placed in its box. In a caboard. Still no faults. Just dated. So I would agree.
     
  18. dannnielll

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    Thnk of it another way. Equipment with a lot of weight needs more costly shipping. Raw ore to factories, more metal, shipping from Japan and China to Europe, , larger warehouses, lightness reduces all these.
    The actual business part of the receiver is only a couple of grammes of active component. With a high powered amplifier it is the weight of the iron and the copper in the trafo. All else is excess. In a loudspeaker here is probably more importance in mass. The cabinet must not flex, the magnetic field needs to be strong so a heavy magnet..
    The newer technology with switch mode supplies and more efficient energy consumption means we get more done with less.
     
  19. dante01

    dante01
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    Shipping containers are all the same size and cost the same to ship irrespective of their laden weight. The entire chassis of an amplifier or AV receiver contributes to the audio performance as does the shielding hence why many higher tier amps and receivers have their interiors copper plated in order to reduce external factors influencing the signals within them and their front panels made from metal with heavier gauge steal used for the casing and chassis in order to reduce resonance. These build factors only marginally improve upon the audio performance, but they do improve upon it. The unfortunate part is that such measures are not cheap to enact and use resources that are now more expensive to use. People are stillwilling to pay for these marginal improvements though.

    Advances in electrical engineering do not negate the factors mentioned above that can improve upon the audio performance. These same factors can still be used in conjunction with the more efficient PSUs to improve upon a device's performance.
     
    Last edited: Jan 24, 2018
  20. dannnielll

    dannnielll
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    Microphonics which is what you are describing, have audible effects in susceptible components and RFI is a function of bad shielding and widespread loops not the mass of steel used. Semiconductor devices are very immune to microphonics, which is a condition associated with thermionic valves, old carbon comp resistors and point contact transistors. In respect of panels being driven into vibration in sympathy by the ambient acoustics, well they should be critically damped and they won't . My arguement is that product design should be smart and use the minimum necessary to get the job done to spec. Ostentatious Consumption is not a good design goal.
    The Chord products , while expensive are apparently losing nothing in sonic credibility by being small and neat.
     
  21. dante01

    dante01
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    Do you mean like this which weighs in at 86Kg?

    SPM 14000 Mk. II - Chord Electronics Ltd


    You'd need 2 of them if wanting a stereo setup, not to mention a pre amp. Chord suggest their CPA 8000 which weighs in at 30Kg. That's more than most flagship multichannel integrated AV receivers weigh just for a 2 channel pre amp.
     
    Last edited: Jan 24, 2018
  22. Joe Fernand

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    'Ostentatious Consumption is not a good design goal' - agreed, though better choice of lightweight plastics plus a decent fit and finish do go a long way to the enjoyment of a product.

    We all like our products to be tactile as well as visual - the weight and 'feel' of a rotary dial makes a big initial impression when you unbox a new component.

    Joe
     
  23. dannnielll

    dannnielll
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    No I was thinking more the mojo. That product actually redefines ostentatious Consumption to a new high and it didn't even have a volume control!!!.
     
  24. Khazul

    Khazul
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    180Kg for pre-amp + amps at a combined cost of 81K?

    Be a right pain the backside if you decide to move it by an inch or two :D
     
  25. dante01

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    No not really. You simply use your fork lift truck :lesson:
     
  26. Khazul

    Khazul
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    Last edited: Jan 25, 2018
  27. dante01

    dante01
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    Those able to spend £80K on hifi probably also have minions to run around moving it for them anyway?
     
  28. Khazul

    Khazul
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    Yes true - 'remote control' probably means asking the butler...
     
  29. dante01

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    You have to ask your butler? Mine just does stuff.
     
  30. dannnielll

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    Stuff or snuff?
     

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