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upgrading from old sony amp to denon avr-1610?!

neilos70

Established Member
hi everyone,
im finally about to upgrade from an old sony str-db1080 amp, which has served me really well for 8 years and was in its day a great amp when released.

ive set a budget and have shortlisted the denon avr-1610. I listen to stereo music through my b&w's in 2.1 from an ipod and marantz cd player and have a panny bd-55 bluray player into 5.1 - that's it for connections hence i decided against the denon avr-1910 as i do not need 7.1.

*Sound quality in stereo and the hidef audio is of high priority.

my question is as an upgrade path is the denon a wise match for my existing amp? and will it be significantly better? Or should i spend a bit more?

obscure i know but im sure some wise fellow of the forums will know the sony amp and be able to satisfy my curious mind before i part with the cash.

thanks for your help in advance and i look forward to your replies.

ps richer sounds lowered their price on the avr-1610 to £279 today!
 

Jamie

Distinguished Member
Not heard the Denon personally but they are reputed to be "better than average" with Stereo, whatever that means. I used to have the same Sony myself and never thought it was much cop at all for stereo anyway, so most amps might be a good upgrade anyway

I wouldn't necessarily discount the 1910 just because you don't need 7.1, you could use the extra channels to Bi-Amp your main L+R channels, which along with the extra power could be quite a welcome improvement for stereo stuff.

If Stereo really is a priority have you thought of maybe getting an AV amp with Pre-Outs which would allow you to use a stereo amp to drive the main channels in AV use and just the stereo amp on its own for stereo?
 

safcalibur

Distinguished Member
Also just to highlight the sound difference between the two amps. Sonys are considered bright whereas Denons are considered warm. If you go for the denon (which would be better for music) you will get a different sound to the one you are used to with you sony.

Bright describes sound which places greater emphasis on the higher frequencies or treble and can sound crisp, exciting but also sometimes shrill, thin and lacking bass. Warm amps place greater emphasis on mid/lower frequencies and bass and aren't generally as exciting as bright amps but do give a fuller, richer sound.

Something which is slightly subjective but there are differences all the same. Maybe a demo would be in order....

Cheers

Saf
 

neilos70

Established Member
Thanks jimbob, I have considered biamping as I have a peach of an amp at work which would sound fab on my 2.1 config. Does the 1610 do this?

I need a good all rounder really. I looked at yammy, Sony and onkyo but the denon's appeal to my taste and they look much better than the others too.
 

neilos70

Established Member
Also just to highlight the sound difference between the two amps. Sonys are considered bright whereas Denons are considered warm. If you go for the denon (which would be better for music) you will get a different sound to the one you are used to with you sony.

Bright describes sound which places greater emphasis on the higher frequencies or treble and can sound crisp, exciting but also sometimes shrill, thin and lacking bass. Warm amps place greater emphasis on mid/lower frequencies and bass and aren't generally as exciting as bright amps but do give a fuller, richer sound.

Something which is slightly subjective but there are differences all the same. Maybe a demo would be in order....

Cheers

Saf

fair comment saf, thanks.
my b&w's are quite warm so the denon would suit them perfectly i think. the sony as jimbob rightly pointed out wasnt all that great with stereo, but made up for it in 5.1 so i am looking to tone the overall sound down a bit!

a demo isnt on the cards as no local dealers have a demo room, but as i work in pro audio [disco, club sound and light] im willing to take an educated punt from the advice and threads on the forums after doing some research and listening to you guys.

any other advice is greatly appreciated.:smashin:
 

safcalibur

Distinguished Member
Hi mate,

Generally, and of course something like sound is always going to be slightly subjective, but generally opposites are paired with eachother. So bright amp and warm/neutral speakers and vice versa. The reason for this is because if you pair like with like then you will either be potentially getting a very bassy, muddy sound (warm with warm) or a shrill, harsh, thin sound (bright with bright). This is why its best to pair opposites but as i said this is subjective to an extent and it depends on what sounds good to you at the end of the day.

Also to add that this is def something worth bearing in mind but i wouldnt let this be the deciding factor, go with what sounds good to you. I appreciate a demo isnt on the cards so hopefully others can give their opinions.

I have a denon myself and love the warm sound i get from it and would have no hesitation recommending one. Best of luck in our purchase mate.

Cheers

Saf
 

neilos70

Established Member
absolutely saf.
im now researching pre-outs on the 2 models to see if i can hook in my musical fidelity amp i have for stereo use.

i see you have the 1910, do you know if i can do the above on this unit? the 1610 has pre-outs for sub and additional l/r surrounds - which to me sounds like it will not do the additional amp route.
 

safcalibur

Distinguished Member
Hey mate,

Unfortunately the 1910 only has multi channel analgue inputs, no pre outs for an additional amp i'm afraid!

Still nice amp tho, everyone makes mistakes!! :)

Cheers

Saf
 

neilos70

Established Member
now researching macro functions on the denons. Im almost there with the decision i think!

thanks for all your replies:thumbsup:
 

Passingbat

Distinguished Member
Other options for amps with pre-outs are the £350 yamaha 765, £400 Sony 2400ES and the £500 Yamaha 1065 (equivalent in pecking order status to the Denon 2310).
 

neilos70

Established Member
ooh spanner in the works, ive really got in my head to have my amp connected to the AV amp for stereo use now.

thanks dick lodge, im looking at the machines you suggested now.
 

neilos70

Established Member
after much deliberation and spec comparing im settling for the yamaha rxv765 - it was the pre-outs to connect my hifi amp for stereo use that swung it for me and has the extra 20w p/c power increase @ 8ohm over the denon 1610. This extra ooomph will drive my B&w's nicely. In all other respects it does what the denon amps do so im happy with my choice.

I know yammy kit from old, so know it will sonically cut the mustard, and build quality is always first rate.

Im now looking to place an order and will shop around today.
many thanks to everyone for your suggestions and advice. I will report on the owners forum my findings once i have it and get a chance to play!

thanks again.
 

Jamie

Distinguished Member
I think you have made a wise decision there. Yamaha Amps are also "better than average" IMO at stereo and would probably be my initial preference if going for a Japanese amp. Sadly for my wallet and also hopes of being able to update anytime soon I'm now addicted to Arcams.

Can't believe the Denons don't have pre-outs though, even our old Sony (from memory so might be mistaken) had pre-outs. As did my Ancient Sherwood Pro-Logic amp
 
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neilos70

Established Member
I think you have made a wise decision there. Yamaha Amps are also "better than average" IMO at stereo and would probably be my initial preference if going for a Japanese amp. Sadly for my wallet and also hopes of being able to update anytime soon I'm now addicted to Arcams.

Can't believe the Denons don't have pre-outs though, even our old Sony (from memory so might be mistaken) had pre-outs. As did my Ancient Sherwood Pro-Logic amp

thanks jimbob i respect your arcam choice, beautiful british kit!
in normal pre-children years i would have possibly opted for the brand, but 'hi honey ive just spent 2 grand on av kit today' line would not go down well right now... :mad: my wife :D me!

I think denon are confident in the fact that for most people the stereo decoder in the unit will be sufficient for the average user who listens on occasions etc - hence the omission of pre-outs. Unfortunately for them, I have worked in the DJ Audio industry for many years and know that my stereo amp is miles superior in sound quality compared with any Av amp at the price point i can afford. So, the yamaha suits my needs really and Im looking forward to a purchase soon!

all the best:)
 

Jamie

Distinguished Member
thanks jimbob i respect your arcam choice, beautiful british kit!
in normal pre-children years i would have possibly opted for the brand, but 'hi honey ive just spent 2 grand on av kit today' line would not go down well right now... :mad: my wife :D me!
No I wouldn't get away with that either. Luckily my Arcam is knocking on a bit in AV years and cost me a princely 150 quid. Saving up the 500 or more I need for the next upgrade may take a while as I've a 2 year old and a 5 month old.
 

neilos70

Established Member
ah yes, the drain on my resources as i like to call them! amp still not purchased, been busy with work, but it will be done soon.
 

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