Question 'Magical sounding AVR' for $ (refurbished or second hand ebay)


Standard Member
TLDR: Looking to upgrade on Yamaha RX V-475 AVR, must be HD capable soundwise and have 'better acoustic signature' than the Yamaha. Price $ second hand/eBay etc

Okay, so 2 years ago I randomly bought some inexpensive tower speakers (Precision Audio CT26) $149 Canadian dollars and a cheap AVR from eBay (Sherwood RD 705i) $199 Canadian dollars.

I wasn't expecting much, just an upgrade from the TV speakers, that's all. So when I first started playing around I was pleasantly surprized and blown away... I have dabbled a little bit in Hifi kits, AVRs and so have a reasonable and average (not excellent) knowledge of HiFi setups and sounds and I've had more expensive setups but this was simply amazing!!!

How can I describe it? The acoustics were amazing, but even more satisfying that that was a sense that the music was coming to my ears, rather than I was having to strain and listen to the music (if that makes sense to the reader lol !?).

This to me is one of the holy grails of HI-FI, when you don't have to strain to listen to the dynamics/acoustics, its as if it's coming to your ears served on a plate lol. I thought it was a fluke, but no matter what I threw at the Sherwood AVR regardless of whether I was playing 2 channel/surround/radio/DTS/Dolby/mp3 everything sounded great!

Then the unthinkable happened...The HDMI board died. I was heartbroken and so was my wife. We ended up selling it for spares/parts on eBay as Sherwood stopped supporting their HIFIs in 2012 even with warranty...

So after the Sherwood died and sold I got what I thought would be a no brainer and 'superior AVR' the Yamaha RX V-475. It won a load of awards was more expensive and more features... But no matter what I tried settings wise this Yamaha AVR sounded inferior to the Sherwood AVR. I got listening fatigue very quickly with the Yamaha AVR and it didn't have that magical quality that the Sherwood RD705i AVR had. I found this very surprizing considering the Yamaha RX V-475 AVR had won a lot of awards and whilst the Sherwood was considered budget and cheap.

I never got to the bottom of why the Sherwood AVR sounded better than the Yamaha AVR, maybe it was just better matched with to the Precision Audio Speakers? Or had the better internal hardware. I tried looking at the specs of both amp but wasn't able to see from the specs why this was...?

Anyways ultimately, I know 'great sound' is very subjective that's why I felt I needed to explain with a long story.... I'm looking to buy a HI-FI that can bring back that magical 'come to my ears' sound that the Sherwood RD 705i AVR produced. The reason I felt like I needed to write this long post was to get across that sometimes newer/more expensive/well known doesn't always mean 'better' sound. I was nearly going to pull the trigger on buying the Sherwood again but after reading a lot of forum posts realized that Sherwood has MASSIVE problems with their HDMI boards and are prone to eventually blowing.

Getting to the point, would anyone know of any relatively cheap AVR which is DOLBY/DTS HDcapable (second hand eBay - $300 Canadian dollar range ) and is known for having great dynamic sound come to your ears sound? As I said earlier I picked up the Sherwood RD705i AVR for $ on eBay so hopefully, there should be something just as tantalizing for $ I would have thought

Well phew... thank you for taking the time and patience to read my post/request I look forward to any suggestions.

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