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Upgrading from a A592, £250 ceiling. Please help!

Discussion in 'AV Receivers & Amplifiers' started by arallsopp, Apr 17, 2003.

  1. arallsopp

    arallsopp
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    Ok,

    Caveat: Yes I'm a noob. Yes, I've spent some time here searching. No, I've not been able to find an answer to my specific question. Yes, that's probably because I'm a noob....

    For the last 2 years or so, I've been running a Pioneer636D dvd player through a Yamaha A592 amplifier to a set of 4 Mission bookshelfs, a Mission seventy something or other centre, and a paradigm pdr10 sub.

    The onboard decoder of the 636D feeds the 6 channel input of the amp via 6 phonos. The room has a large tv, but no aerial socket, sky, ntl, cd player, etc. This is a DVD only room (at the moment). To my ears, the amp makes a decent enough noise, but
    only really pulls itself together when above 25% volume. Below this, its all a bit supressed and odd.

    Now the fun bit: Through tenuous circumstance, I've just been offered £100 for the A592. I'm very much considering taking this option, and adding £100-£150 of my own to get a better amp for the room. Question is, do you think £200-£250 of modern amp would give a better result than the existing setup? Is £100 a fair price for the A592 (am I or him being rude?)?

    At the top of my budget (I think) is the Yamaha DSPAX630, although I'm pretty desparate to find one under £250. Looking equally attractive is the RXV430RDS at Richers for £179, which may be a better bang per buck, as such. I don't think I really need prologic II, as I'm only ever playing DTS or DD5.1 through her. I do have some DD mono and stereo films, if that matters?

    I'm also eyeing the Marantz offerings, but I don't really know much about their amps as yet.

    As stated, its DVD only at the moment (fed via RGB to the tv, so no switching needed) but in the future I might upgrade to an SACD or DVDA player, so may have an influence. There's an m$ console that I might want to plug in on occasion too, so it'd be good if there was atleast 2 digital inputs. As a reference point, I wouldn't object to keeping the 6 channel inputs either, as I've got all the cables I need to maintain this connection in addition.

    I accept that sound quality is fairly subjective, but we do have reviews (right?) so there must be some measurable differences.

    Basically, whats winning awards at this price point currently? Where's a good place to buy? Why don't any of my local stores let me audition this stuff, and will I ever not be a noob?

    Ok, I think I'm all typed out. Your turn. :)
     
  2. nathan_silly

    nathan_silly
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    £100 for the Yamaha sounds about right- not too high or low.

    I would go for the 6xx series Yamaha, £250 from Richer Sounds. The DD/DTS processor in the Yamaha will probably be better quality than the Pioneer. Also more features, power & inputs than the 4xx series.
     
  3. arallsopp

    arallsopp
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    Wow. That was quick. Took me longer than that to write my post :)

    Hmmm.. This is my worry though.

    Its an additional £150 for a 'probably better quality' decoder. I think the A592 is 110W to the front pair as stereo, or 70W fronts, 70W centre and 35W rears in 6 channel direct mode. That seems to be plenty of power (well, plenty of volume anyway, is it the same?)

    I'll head over to the Yamaha site and see if I can pull down a manual for some of the 6xxs. I'd like to know what 'features' I'd be likely to use. I think I'd like to be able to time the rear channels (and the centre) discretely, as this is pretty much the only thing I can't do with the current setup.

    Have DSP modes got any better since the A592, as they all sound pretty horrific to me.

    Cheers for the pointers :)

     
  4. nathan_silly

    nathan_silly
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    DSP modes- Still horrible. Just use vanilla DPL/DPL II/DTS/DD and not "echo echo echo" stadium etc.

    Power is not related to volume, in fact try and get the best amp you can (rather than a lower-powered amp) as the higher powered amp will sound better at high volumes (wheras the lower powered one won't sound as good)

    All AV amps with DD/DTS processing have distance (delay) feature.
     
  5. arallsopp

    arallsopp
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    Thanks Nathan,

    I'm guessing amplifier technology hasn't moved on as fast as decoder tech, so the upgrade cost will only really be buying me a potentially better decoder with delay facilities.

    What I was really hoping for was someone to say

    'the A592 is rilly rilly old and naff sounding and the new Yammys are just fantastic compared! If you bought the £170 one you'd get a miles better sound and above £200 you'd be pledging your earnings and your first three born to keeping it happy.' ;)

    Both amps are yamahas after all, and are of roughly comparable positions within the product range of the times...

    (ok. that line above is the line. You've been prompted, just copy and paste the paragraph above it into your replies ;))
     
  6. nathan_silly

    nathan_silly
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    :)

    I used to have a Yamaha DSP-A590- then later on a DSP-E492, mate had DSP-A592.

    I better not say why I upgraded to processor/poweramp setup as you'll undoubtly do the same!

    Yamaha's are pretty good units, only faults I've found is they are a bit "hissy" and they lack Hi-Fi sound. But for AV they're one of the best.

    [edit] regarding poor sound quality at low volumes- most speakers need to be pushed a little bit to sound their best (ie at low background volume my system lacks attack)

    Some amps have loudness settings, which can be used at lower volumes (increases bass) Don't use at higher volumes though.

    Pro-Logic II also has modes for music, as well as films.
     
  7. mick23

    mick23
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    i used to have yam ax593+e492, and purchased yam a5,which according to yamaha is the same as the e800,but has 5 inbuilt amps, in comparing 592 vs a5 for sterio, the 592 was much better,
    so i used 592 driving fronts and a5 for center and surrounds,then changed to 3802 wanted a (one box solution) although 3802 is good for av, i think the 592 might just be a tad better for sterio,being a dedicated sterio amp,

    i would be inclined to to demo the new yamaha av amp vs 592 in sterio, if the new av amp is (equal ) to 592 you can then proceed, i sold my 592 for £100 to a mate,but sometimes wonder wether i should have kept it , you could still use 592 driving fronts+av amp doing processing and have the more up to date modes pl2 etc,

    my m8 has 592 driving bw 602s3 +yam cd player sterio only system, i use 3802+bw cdm1nts av and sterio, the differance is marginal so changing your sterio amp for a modest av amp to use in sterio +av might not give the quality you require.
     
  8. arallsopp

    arallsopp
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    Cheers all,

    Nathan, what you're saying about pushing the speakers makes absolute sense to me. I'm kinda sorry the problem affects others, and kinda glad it isn't just me :)

    Mick, thanks for your advice. Am I correct in thinking the 592 you speak of is the stereo amp ax592, visible at the yamaha archives here. If so, I think I can see why it'd sound better in stereo than the confusingly named 6 channel "dsp-a592", visible here.

    I'd guess the new 6 channel amp's stereo performance would improve on the old model, but I'll certainly take your advice regarding a demo :)
     
  9. mick23

    mick23
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    yes it is the ax592 i am refering to ,on a slightly differant note sold an early technics av amp to a friend when his nad gave up the ghost after 19 years, he was using with large mission standmounts and a good cassette player, sound was not good in sterio,then he purchased from me the ax592 which improved things,

    my other m8 has all yamaha system but i was having demo of some gear, someone was demoing rotel ra01 £250 no remote 40 watts with bw 602s3 my m8 uses 602s3 +ax592 and thought the rotel sounded better than ax592 , just another avenue to persue,
     
  10. arallsopp

    arallsopp
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    Cheers mick :)

    Accepted the £100 today, so this kinda raises in priority. Currently, my media totem is about half a foot shorter and an awful lot quieter than I'm used to. :rolleyes:

    I may off to Richers this afternoon, if I get the chance. Have a little look see :)
     
  11. arallsopp

    arallsopp
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    Ok.

    I'm down to the Pioneer811 and the yammy 630se. Looks to be the same price, and I'm matching to a Pioneer player...

    Anyone got any thoughts as to which would be the best bet for movie only performance? I can't seem to find any reviews, and life sufficiently remotely to prevent demos...
     
  12. Nobber22

    Nobber22
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    Which Mission speakers do you have? Are they a bit on the bright side? The Pioneer is a bright-sounding amp and very diff. from the Yam you just sold. Bright Pioneer + bright Mission tweeters = potentially too much top-end. Could be great to start, but fatigueing (sp?) later on.

    You are familiar with the Yamaha-family sound and seem to like it, so the 630 would get my vote.
     
  13. arallsopp

    arallsopp
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    Cheers Nobber,

    Agreed entirely :)

    As it happens, I've just been to Richers, and my page and a half of features checklist yielded a result at line 2:

    1: Price, Yammy @ £250, Pioneer @ £300
    2: Availability: Yammy in stock, Pioneer expected soon, ish, maybe next wednesday, perhaps one of our other stores, have you tried the web, etc....

    Result. I have one slightly longer left arm than I had an hour back, and I now own a YammyDSP630SE :)

    Cheers all for the help.

    I'll let you know how she sounds.

     

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