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Really confused add integrated amp or replace av amp

Discussion in 'AV Receivers & Amplifiers' started by wilber, Mar 6, 2003.

  1. wilber

    wilber
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    Went to my friendly 7oaks earlier to discuss adding an integrated amp to my yamaha 630, but all i've come home with is a head ache :suicide:

    The shop was quiet so I had the manager & the assistant manager helping and they fell into two very different camps.

    Asst Manager "Buy a Rotel RA-02 & add it to your Yamaha which is brill for movies and lousy for music - upgrade your av amp in a year or so when something really shiny appears"

    Manager "Buy a pioneer vsx1011 - big improvement in movies and very good two channel it's really shiny now. No we don't have one in stock - about a week."

    The maths is definitely on the Rotel way £320 for the amp + a bit for interconnects. pioneer = £630 less what I can sell my Yamaha for (£200 ??).

    My inclination is to stick with my yamaha - I'm not sure that an av amp can sound really good in 2 channels nor that the improvement in movies justifies the extra bucks :rolleyes:
     
  2. sounddog

    sounddog
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    Okay ... this is my opinion.

    The Pioneer 1011 won't sound a patch on the Rotel RA-02 for music in stereo.

    If I was you ... I would buy the RA-02 (or my secondhand RA-1060 for £375 which is a significant improvement over the RA-02 and was only bought just before xmas) now ... then in a year or so consider replacing your Yamaha with a Pioneer (or Marantz or Denon or Yamaha or whatever is the best for movies at the time). My feeling would be that you won't have lost anything buying the RA-02 now, because it will still work well with your replacement amp.

    My feeling is that to match the RA-02 for music ... you would be having to look at amps over £1000 ... or go the route we have with the Rotel Processor and second hand power amps.

    Sorry if any of that sounds too much like a sales pitch.

    Vikki
     
  3. wilber

    wilber
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    Thanks Vikki - I think you might well have the right path for me. Really not after the 1060 - RA02 will be adequate & has higher WAF.
     
  4. Dazed

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    Vikki

    Given your opinions of the Rotels superiority to the 1011 - do you really think you'ld be able to tell the difference in a blind audition?
     
  5. sounddog

    sounddog
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    Dazed ... I think yes in a blind test I could tell the difference between a £700 AV amp and a £500 stereo amp.

    Wilber ... the RA-1060 really is pretty :)) It actually goes well with both black and silver other hardware because of the side bits.

    Vikki
     
  6. wilber

    wilber
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    vikki ahah - the black bits are part of the problem, that And I'd have to change the supports on my Quadraspire rack to allow for the extra couple of centimeters height (would only have about 1 cm clearance above the amp). Your persistence is admirable though
     
  7. sounddog

    sounddog
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    I'm sure you don't spell "annoying" like that wilber!!
     
  8. Dazed

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    Vikki-

    Agree I absolutely love the looks of Rotel products.

    However I sometimes wonder about people's claim that the difference between amps is SO large that people can hear much difference between them or even identify which is which in a blind audition.

    I think you might find this an interesting read -

    http://www.hometheaterforum.com/htforum/showthread.php?threadid=104336
     
  9. deckard

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    Wilber, is your AV amp actually bad in stereo or are you just curious to see if you can do better? Might be a bad case of upgraditis!
     
  10. sounddog

    sounddog
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    Hi,

    This really is a difficult subject, say the Rotel RSP1066 now that sounds so darn close to the RA1060 it's difficult on most cd's to tell the difference there are a few that show it up. Like last track of LoTR The Two Towers soundtrack.

    But that is using the RA1060 as the power amplifier so there is hardly any difference.

    It is very surprising though how much difference there is. I could be totally wrong but there are a quite a few tracks where the are whole words that i've never heard in the past but using a good stereo amp or processor or I suppose higher quality intergrated av amp you can hear that on the lower end ones you cannot.

    Now I think it is ridiculous the amount of money a lot of hifi equiment costs and i'm sure half of the costs are just "lets see what we can get away with", BUT there really is a large difference between a £500 intergrated stereo amp and a £500ish AV amp in stereo mode.

    Now that is using either a Arcam Diva 72 or DV88 player. If I was using a £2 battery powered cd player I don't know if the difference would be there, but it really is noticable with our kit, the Rotel RA1060 really was not comparable against the Marantz 5200 (which was fine for movies).

    Now I have no idea if I am talking rubbish and i've been sucked in by the trade to "believe this" maybe I am, maybe I am not. But to me at the moment I have to say a stereo amp would seem the best choice unless you can pay a lot more for the intergrated AV amp.

    I personally think a lot of it is down to the power amplification. A 60 watt rotel power amp seems way better to my ears then a heck of a lot of the stuff build into quite expensive all in one AV amps.

    Well i've had my ramble I don't think I have helped you make your mind up at all, but at least i've got my thoughts off my chest :devil:

    Steff
     
  11. wilber

    wilber
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    You may be right Deckard but I "feel" that music is "stuffy" at the mo - isn't it hard to describe sound - it's like being asked to describe what red is without using the word colour
     
  12. sounddog

    sounddog
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    I know what you mean about it being stuffy ... thats how our Marantz SR5200 sounds compared to the RA1060.

    Just more detail with the stereo integrated amp.

    Vikki
     
  13. deckard

    deckard
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    Yeah, it's tricky trying to describe the sound of your system without coming across all Ginny Goulden (you know, that mad wine tasting woman!).

    Sounds like you're complaining of a congested sound with a lack of 'air' and 3 dimensionality (...now I'm starting it...), in my own experience these are the foibles of AV amps' stereo performance and why I have a stereo system with an add-on processor rather than a dedicated AV amp.
     
  14. Andywilliams

    Andywilliams
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    Hi folks
    Well all i can say is that the nad t752 is like night and day where stereo is concerned against the yamaha htr5540 which i previously owned the shrillness as now gone and detail is loads better you do actually hear things on tracks that you previously didnt know existed.I will be upgrading my speakers shortly to the mission 780 series so hopefully things will get even better.
    Gonzo.
     

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