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Opinions on Pioneer 501?

Discussion in 'AV Receivers & Amplifiers' started by royster, Jan 22, 2004.

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  1. royster

    royster
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    Hi,
    I have been looking at a lot of receivers and at the moment I think the 501 looks best because of the size and the fact that it seems to support all the audio formats. Am i right in thinking this is a THX receiver.
    Anyway I would like to connect this receiver to my Toshiba 36" Strata TV but keep my DVD player ouput leads(component) still going to the component on the back of the tv. I assume I just then send the coax digital out to the receiver. I also want to connect my xbox to the receiver which is fine because its scart and I can use another digital optical connection but I am a bit confused on how I connect the video and also how I get the television audio through my amp. sorry for being a nooob.

    I could do with some help please and also if anyone has got any opinions on this receiver good/bad could you post them. I can not seem to find any reviews on it.
    Thanks
    Roy
     
  2. royster

    royster
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    Anyone?

    Another querie for anyone who owns this receiver or the 301 is how does the receiver receive sound from the television, am I right in thinking that it picks it up from DVR/TV scart port?
    Would love any feedback anyone has on this receiver.
     
  3. Cadire

    Cadire
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    I had the 301 and now have the 501.

    They're both great little receivers, especially given their small form factor (they fit nicely under my TV).

    The way I have mine setup is like so:

    DVD via component to TV - To view component output
    DVD via Scart to Receiver - Wife friendly setup
    DVD via Digital Coax to Receiver
    DVD via analog leads to Receiver - For DVD Audio
    Sky+ via Scart to receiver
    Sky+ via Digital Optical to Receiver
    Receiver via Scart to TV

    I don't take any sound from the TV at all, though my Telly (Tosh PF2) does have digital outputs to do this if I wanted to. I use the Sky+ box for all my programmes and so don't need an aerial.

    Your video should be connected to the Receiver via a Scart. That way you only have one Scart going to the TV, with the added bonus of only having to select one input source on the TV. I have no idea if Prologic 'survives' the trip through a Video though... I'd guess it depends on the Video type itself (maybe somebody else could clarify this, I don't use a Video).

    With the Video connected as above, I'm not sure you would need a connection from your TV to the Receiver, though again I'm not familiar with your equipment.

    If you do need to connect to the Receiver from your TV, I would try a digital output first, then an analog if this is not available. Depending on the above Video setup, you might need to use a Scart if there are no Digital connections.

    Good Luck!
     
  4. royster

    royster
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    Thanks for the reply Cadire.

    My Strata tv does not have digital out so I was just hoping that the scart 1 socket on the tv would output the audio to the receiver anyway. Does the 501 have phono inputs on the front of the unit? Is this receiver going to be able to handle the following do you think.

    Xbox - Receiver (Scart)
    DVD - Receiver (Scart)
    Televison Audio - Receiver
    then Receiver connected to the TV using scart1 socket which is the only scart socket on this tv which RGB enabled. You lucky PF2 users get 2 sockets.
    The manual on the my tv states the video should connect to scart 2 on the tv because otherwise you can not record digital tv broadcasts.

    Whats Pioneer phone support like? anyone know. Perhaps they would be able to advise me the best way to set it up.

    I have thought about buying a different receiver but the size of these things makes thing more awkward and having a receiver except scart leads is quite handy. There is so many possiblities it makes it much harder to decide what to do.

    So you rate the 501 quite highly then, does it generate a lot of heat? Is the sound clear?

    Thanks for your help.
    Much appreciated.
     
  5. Cadire

    Cadire
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    It sounds very good to my ears, but I suppose the speakers one uses are a factor there too (I use a Canton Movie package).

    I haven't noticed it getting particularly hot, even after watching Robbie Williams 'What we did last summer' at a very high volume.

    The sound is more 'rounded' than the 301 I had (that's the only word I can think of to describe it), and it has the excellent MCACC audio setup (a supplied microphone is used to calibrate it all). All in all I'm very happy with it.

    I read somewhere that the slimline models such as the 301/501 are not on par with the full sized models... but they still get highly rated so I don't know what's going on there! Unfortunately I don't have the space for a full sized model, at least not without buying an AV Rack, so the 501 suits me fine.

    It might be worth taking a look at the UK Pioneer website for support contact details. While you're there download the 501 manual. (use vsx-c501 as the search criteria.
     
  6. royster

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    Thanks again Cadire. Glad you are happy with your 501. I will take another look at the site and see what I can find out. I am in the same situation with respect to space in that I really can't find room for a full-sized unit somewhere. The wife also probably would not agree to it anyway. It's a shame as I have heard that the Pioneer 812 is suppose to rather good.
    As for speakers all I have at the moment is the ones which come with the toshiba tv so they are probably not suitable. Probably look to get some new ones but can't really afford to spend that much on them. I have heard about some Yamaha ones and people keep mentioning tannoy but I will have to investigate how much these can be purchased from the web. Probably look for a 6.1 package as thats what the receiver can handle.
    Thanks for all your help
     
  7. royster

    royster
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    Just looked at the site again and noticed that this unit does not have Bass/Treble controls. Can you alter the sound in anyway at all?
     
  8. Cadire

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    The unit has 'modes' which you can select to get a sound more to your liking. Off the top of my head they include movie, music, radio, games, stereo... and some others that I forget. There are no separate controls for bass/treble management for DVD Audio (though the subwoofer output can be switched between 3 different modes).

    I normally just stick to Movie and Music and sometimes 'enhance' them with the 'Advanced Surround' options. You can play with the levels of the different channels too if you really want to.

    DVD-A doesn't sound great with this setup, but they normally come with a 5.1/DTS soundtrack anyway, which sounds very good.
     

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