Have cash - want new amp ..recommendations pls..



Hi! I currently have a Yam 595a running Acoustic Energy 109's + a 107C + Eltax Dipolar rears and a Servo 15 sub. All movies are fed from an HTPC.

Now then. I have some money to spend and I think it's time to upgrade my amp. Possibly my speakers too, but they are already good and I don't really want anything bigger (or I'd be off to find some Def Techs ;) ).

I'm not the type to go auditioning (I really, really, don't have the time, and dealers in London are unpleasant to deal with - too pushy). I have always bought on recemmendation and price (i.e. if it's on special at Richer's then I'll have one!, except for the speakers, which I simply had to have after hearing them).

I have about £600 for the amp (would like to spend £400, but will go to £600).

It looks like a toss up between the Denon 3802, Yam 795, maybe a "lesser" Denon? These are my first thought.

My motivations are:

More power - I think I'm pushing my 595 a little hard (I have no neighbour issues to worry about)
Prologic II (I watch a lot of DivX movies)
The extra speaker at the back (ES, EX ?) (do I need a pair or one??)

Anyone else been here recently? had similar choices to make? Any feelings on currenly models you love or hate?

I know it's vague, and please please please don't tell me I ought to go and demo some. I can't. I'd really appreciate any feedback.




Active Member
Marantz x300 series such as the SR5300

supports DTS ES,PL2 etc

DD EX\THX recommend two center rears


I would get the Yamaha, I personaly dont like the Sound of Denon Equiptment. But You may like the sound of them.

I would Demo them, and will know which you will like.


Thanks for the feedback so far. I understand what you say about not liking the sound from particular brands. I used to use Harmon Kardon for the AV amp but it was too warm and soft. Much prefer Yamaha.

Looks like I am going to have to get off my arse and get a demo. I work near Tottenham Court road in London and the chance of getting a demo of anything is hopeless. They just want to shift boxes and i feel guilty going to a proper hi-fi store and demoing kit I know I won't by from them ;)


Active Member
I have the same experiences in London but there is a good "proper" Hi-Fi shop on Tottenham Court Road - Hi-Fi Experience I think it's called. It's on the right as you walk from Oxford Street, nearly opposite the HSBC bank.

Different brands give a different type of presentation, especially the Japanese Vs British amps so it's very much down to personal taste. Personally I'm considering the Arcam AVR200 which I seem to remember being on EmpireDirect for £585.

Sometimes I can't be arsed to go around half a dozen shops and audition kit.... I'm considering the Velodyne CHT10 subwoofer in the powerbuys on recommendation too!


Distinguished Member
just try and listen to as many as you can.

I personally think that if you can get a 3802 within your budget then listen to it.

I have just sold one to my mate for £500 , denon stuff does tend to hold its value well, but this is one of the best amps under a grand, but you need to listen.If for any reason he changes his mind before monday (that is when i am delivering it) I will let you know.

But you should try and listen to a few over the weekend.


Active Member
Just to add that new 3802s (if they're in stock) can be had for roughly £600.


It's a bit below your price range (is that a first on here?!?) but I have just got a Yamaha 630. It has 6.1, PLII, etc. Pay under £350 delivered. Mine's teamed with Mission FS2AV, very discrete, very (imo) good. And all for £700.

Kuni D

Active Member
Originally posted by nigel_williams
I have the same experiences in London but there is a good "proper" Hi-Fi shop on Tottenham Court Road - Hi-Fi Experience I think it's called. It's on the right as you walk from Oxford Street, nearly opposite the HSBC bank.

I'll second that, prob the best AV retailer down totty. We bought all our AV equip from there (Denon 2801, B&W 602 S2, 601 S2, CC6 S2, Rel Q100E, QED Silver Ann, Attacma stands), and the service was amazing - we demo'd so many different combinations, and they were only to pleased to help. Yr and a bit later, the REL's been playing up a bit, rang them up, and they sorted it all out.

Way I see it, when your spending 2000-2500 on surround kit, I'd rather spend the extra 100-200 for the service and demo'ing.


The 3802 is lush (can't wait for the 3803), but maybe overkill. The 2803 should be out soon.

Phil Hinton

Staff member
Originally posted by mansell

DD EX\THX recommend two center rears

Actually since the launch of THX ultra 2 they now recommend having them very close together, or using just one. I use just one center rear, after experimenting with two at various positions and found the single speaker to be more than adequate for ex es stuff. Kinda hard if you already have a full set of speakers to get just one though, although some manufacturers do sell individual. If buying new speakers you could buy 3 pairs of the same speaker for the best tonal balance and timbre. or two centre speakers and 2 pairs of speakers.


Thanks for all the feedback!

I've ordered a 3802 based on all the reviews and feedback. I thought I'd go over the top a bit so i don't have to upgrade again for a while. Plus the price was under £600

It's here tomorrow am, so once I've got my head around the manual (which I gather is dire) I'll let you know how the upgrade experience goes.....


Well-known Member
Good choice

Any problems there are plenty 3802 users on this site.

Enjoy :)


OK. Got it!

Firstly. - Hi-Fi Junkies - Cheaper than RS, nicer, helpful, had gold avr3802 in stock, got it 19 hours after ordering (£10 postage). Geat service.

Secondly - the amp - love it! You can feel the quality of the power, playing at volume no longer sounds like you are pushing the amp. Not ragged any more.

plII is groovy. The thing is a doddle to setup - don't know what all the fuss is about. Took me about 30 minutes tops. I would say that you have to use the OSD. Would not like to try without.

Played around for an hour or so before I crashed. Very very pleased so far. Mainly listened to PL II because I was catching up on Tivo TV. The whole sound is much more "open" and clearer. Bass is much more controlled and blends with my mains better (I have Servo 15). Music is streets ahead.

Very happy

Thanks for all the help.

No see my post in the speakers section re. surround backs.!


I don't work for them (honest!) , but here is my email thread from Hifi Junkies ..pretty good service I think.... (read from the bottom up)

"Excellent stuff! Yep - it's a corker! Glad you're pleased. Ta for letting me know.



On Friday, November 1, 2002 2:09 pm, Roger Donoghue <[email protected]> wrote:
>Got the amp yesterday. Looks and sounds great!
>-----Original Message-----
>From: Jason Moran [mailto:[email protected]]
>Sent: 30 October 2002 17:55
>To: Roger Donoghue
>Subject: Re: AVR3802 Order
>Dear Roger
>Your order is now winging it's way to you, and will be with you tomorrow
>before 12.00. Your tracking number is:-
>This number will become active when your order reaches it's first port of
>call, this evening. Should you wish to track it's progress, simply visit our
>site, click on Who We Are, What We Do, and go to Delivery and

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