Help needed with deciding what to do.


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Mar 2, 2002
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I'm looking at upgrading my receiver (Denon 1803) but don't know what to look at buying. I want to be able to notice an improvement over the 1803. I don't mind buying 2nd hand.

I had thought about processor + power amps but i really can't justify spending £500+ on a processor and so have decided against this route.

What receivers should i consider -

Denon 3802/3?
Pioneer 2011/AX3/AX5?
Yamaha 1400?

I would also consider adding a stereo amp if this would improve it.
Or forget about the stereo amp and spend the extra on a receiver?

I don't have a fixed budget but obviously cheaper is better for my bank balance.
Delta31 is selling his Marantz SR-7200 for around £300. That's a good amp there that is. Do consider Marantz as they make some truly excellent kit.

He offered it to me in my current WTB: thread but it's the wrong colour for me:

If you are interested then put up a WTB: Marantz SR7200 posting to stick by the rules.

I'll do a search but i'm looking for something more recent.
Recent for features ? It has most. Great remote too. Used to sell seperately at an rrp of £129 by itself.

Jit - having heard two of the pioneers you mention and the Denon 3803 I can quite honestly say they're all an improvement over the 1803 (which I also own).

At present, the Denon 3803 represents the best value for money of the receivers you mention, not only because it's selling for as little as £599, but because that price is going to continue falling until - and after - the release of the AVR3805.

From memory, you're using your 1803 with Tannoy speakers and a Servo 15 subwoofer?

Given this my choice would be between the 3803 and a S/H Pioneer 2011, I think the AX5i is heavily overpriced for how it sounds and the AX3 is inferior to both by all accounts, whilst I just hate yamaha kit full stop.
Yes, i have tannoys and a Servo 15. I've just read the thread about the 3803 for £599 and perhaps when the 3805 is available there will be some 3803's going in the classifieds.

It looks like i'm between the 3803 and 2011 at the moment, are these good for music or would i still find adding a stereo amp an improvement?
You can bi-amp your front channels with the 2011 if you're not using a 7.1 setup, which helps with stereo performance.

The 3803 has 'pure direct' mode for Stereo usage, whereby it switches off all the digital and video circuitry inside the amp to give a 'cleaner' signal path between input & speakers.

I'd say the two are about on par with stereo performance.

That said, an equally priced Stereo amp would blow them out of the water for straight stereo performance - a Rotel RA-1062, for example, would leave them miles behind.

That said I'd expect, after owning an 1803, you'd be more than happy with either the 3803 or 2011 for stereo performance.

If you can wait two or three months, the prices of the 3803 will drop as low as about £480 new, perhaps even lower.
I'm in no hurry and like to get a good deal so will wait until prices drop or i get something in the classifieds.
Hiya James,

How's the Servo15 doing? You managed to get it souding something like decent with music? Something I never quite managed.

I'm currently using 2 x Mission 78as - movies just aren't the same anymore :( They're good but not special like they used to be ;) Music is nice though.

Mind you II've had a complete change of speakers, amp and processor - actually a whole new setup come to think of it, since you're visit. Got rid of the KEF Concerto's and moved onto KEF RDM Ones all round with the Lex DC-1 replaced with an MC-1 and a Rotel 1075 Power Amp, which is letting the system down and to replaced in a couple of months.
Yes, got it sounding great now especially for movies.

Keep me updated if you decide to sell your 1075 as i may be interested although i don't think i'd be collecting this time;)

have you considered the Harman Kardon 4550 or 507 LE.

Has pure stereo output as well,

excellent all round amp.

have heard 507 is on par with 3803.
Originally posted by JIT
Yes, got it sounding great now especially for movies.

Keep me updated if you decide to sell your 1075 as i may be interested although i don't think i'd be collecting this time;)

Do the neighbours appreciate it too? :D

I'll definitely bear you inmind when I come to sell the amp, would be looking for around £400 to give you a rough figure. But that is of course negotiable to an excellent trader such as yourself :)

I'll give you some more details when I've got myself a replacement.
I'm now trying to decide between Denon 3803, Pioneer 2011 or Pioneer AX5i.

The AX5i is my preferred but don't really want to spend as much as £880.

I know the 3803 may be £500 soon.

Pioneer 2011 £450-£500 second hand.

You can get the AX5i for £829 (inc delivery) - if that would sway you.


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