Upgrading Home Theater Receiver

Aziz Ismail

Novice Member
Hi.

Was wondering if anyone could shed some light on what i am hoping to achieve.

I am running an Onkyo TX-NR828 receiver (TX-NR828 | ONKYO Asia and Oceania Website) with some Bowers & Wilkins 684 S1 Floorstanders, 685 Bookshelf rears, the HTM62 S1 centre & sub in a 5.1 home theater setup.

I have read and been advised that using separate equipment ie an av processor and a separate power amplifier would improve my overall sound than using a dedicated AV Receiver. However, i have spoken to RS/Peter Tyson and a few other retailers and they have all advised me to upgrade the receiver rather than investing in a separate stereo receiver/pre-amp & buying a power amplifier. They advised me to maybe upgrade to something like the Marantz SR7015. I do like the Marantz but also getting mixed responses, one being that i am basically only upgrading the technology that the Marantz provides ie 4k @120fps and slighlty better stereo sound.

Would me upgrading to a Marantz from my current Onkyo drastically enhance my sound quality or would i be better off upgrading to something like the Arcam AVR390 or Anthem MRX540.

Currently in order for me to listen to music, i connect my MacBook to the receiver and use Tidal MQA and listen to the music in stereo mode. I have been told that using a receiver in Stereo mode isn't really on par with using a dedicated stereo amplifier and some have said that the Marantz receiver has something called the HDAM which improves stereo sound and is apparently amazing and as good as a dedicated stereo amplifier. How true is this?

I am wanting the ability to listen to music in stereo so just the floor standers and when watching movies 5.1 but speaking to RS & a few others they don't seem to understand how the pre-out or HT Bypass works which you would think they would. I also want the ability to stream my music via Spotify & Tidal lossless rather than constantly having to connect my MacBook. Am i better just investing in something like the NAD T778 or shall i go down the route of separates and if so what equipment would you recommend?

Thanks in advance.
 

gibbsy

Moderator
I believe a NAD would make a better one box solution for stereo music. I'll freely admit I know nothing of streaming services preferring the good old little silver disc. So other may comment here. Out the other main AV manufacturers then it is probably Marantz that has the edge of music presentation.

Going down an AV amp alongside an integrated stereo amp with HT by-pass is chosen by many others, myself included as this can make for a better stereo presentation that even the high end AV amps. Obviously this will depend on the stereo amp chosen and can often be more expensive than a one box solution from the likes of Arcam, NAD or Anthem.
the HDAM which improves stereo sound and is apparently amazing and as good as a dedicated stereo amplifier. How true is this?
It's a fib. I've got a Denon AVC X6500 which was, when new £2200 and Denon's second tier AV amp. It's a great home cinema amp and is pretty good with multi channel music from SACDs, DVD-A and blu ray because of their superior formats over redbook CDs or vinyl. On stereo music it's pretty poor and in no way can it compete with my Rega Elicit-R which is run in conjunction with it via HT by-pass.

Take the new Denon X6700, the 6500's replacement, which is currently £2300 add to that the cost of the Rega Elicit and that will have the cost slightly north of £4000. That will certainly buy you the top end Arcam.

It's all down to your expectations for how good you want your music to sound. How you achieve that is down to you. I'll not give up my Rega and change AV amps around it as that suits me as I enjoy the Rega so much.
 

Aziz Ismail

Novice Member
I believe a NAD would make a better one box solution for stereo music. I'll freely admit I know nothing of streaming services preferring the good old little silver disc. So other may comment here. Out the other main AV manufacturers then it is probably Marantz that has the edge of music presentation.

Going down an AV amp alongside an integrated stereo amp with HT by-pass is chosen by many others, myself included as this can make for a better stereo presentation that even the high end AV amps. Obviously this will depend on the stereo amp chosen and can often be more expensive than a one box solution from the likes of Arcam, NAD or Anthem.

It's a fib. I've got a Denon AVC X6500 which was, when new £2200 and Denon's second tier AV amp. It's a great home cinema amp and is pretty good with multi channel music from SACDs, DVD-A and blu ray because of their superior formats over redbook CDs or vinyl. On stereo music it's pretty poor and in no way can it compete with my Rega Elicit-R which is run in conjunction with it via HT by-pass.

Take the new Denon X6700, the 6500's replacement, which is currently £2300 add to that the cost of the Rega Elicit and that will have the cost slightly north of £4000. That will certainly buy you the top end Arcam.

It's all down to your expectations for how good you want your music to sound. How you achieve that is down to you. I'll not give up my Rega and change AV amps around it as that suits me as I enjoy the Rega so much.
Thanks Gibbsy for your reply.

The representative who i spoke to about upgrading my receiver said that the Arcam & Anthem are definitely an upgrade from my current Onkyo. The NAD T778 he advised is a very good AVR and should be at £2.5k. He said i could achieve the same sort of music experience from the SR7015 or Athem MRX 540. He advised that the NAD has something called modular system meaning that i can remove and upgrade components myself when newer technology becomes available hence the price.

If i was to go down the separate route like yourself, how would i control the volume on each device? I am not 100% sure how adding a stereo amplifier to a receiver works and watching videos on YouTube seem to be confusing. My current Onkyo AVR has pre-out sections on the rear and i think it was Peter Tyson rep who advised on getting something like the NAD C368 and connecting that to my current receiver to improve stereo sound and have the ability to stream my music and not lose any quality. Would i be better just investing in something like this NAD C368 than simply just upgrading to a newer AVR.

The Anthem MRX540 is showing as 100w per channel & the Arcam is showing at 7 channels at 60w per channel. My current Onkyo on their site shows 180w per channel. I have read that the readings aren't necessarily correct as each manufacturer measures the units differently.
 

gibbsy

Moderator
Adding a stereo amp with HT by-pass is really simple. You connect the front left and right pre-outs to the dedicated RCA line-in of the stereo amp. The front left and right speakers are connected to the integrated stereo amp only. You then engage the HT by-pass on the stereo amp (in the case of my Rega it's a simple press of a remote button) and run the AV amp's calibration to EQ it into the system. In HT by-pass the volume is completely controlled by the AV amp. All you are basically doing is running that stereo amp as a pure power amp.

For film and TV then both AV amp and stereo amp are powered up, with the AV amp taking control of the volume. For stereo music with your music sources going direct to the HT by-pass stereo amp then that is just fired up. The whole idea is to take the AV amp completely out of the circuit for stereo music.
 

Aziz Ismail

Novice Member
Adding a stereo amp with HT by-pass is really simple. You connect the front left and right pre-outs to the dedicated RCA line-in of the stereo amp. The front left and right speakers are connected to the integrated stereo amp only. You then engage the HT by-pass on the stereo amp (in the case of my Rega it's a simple press of a remote button) and run the AV amp's calibration to EQ it into the system. In HT by-pass the volume is completely controlled by the AV amp. All you are basically doing is running that stereo amp as a pure power amp.

For film and TV then both AV amp and stereo amp are powered up, with the AV amp taking control of the volume. For stereo music with your music sources going direct to the HT by-pass stereo amp then that is just fired up. The whole idea is to take the AV amp completely out of the circuit for stereo music.
Ok i have just had a look and come across this. If i was to get this Marantz Reciever (Marantz NR1711 Slim 7.2Ch 8K AV Receiver) as it has all the latest tech ie Dolby Atmos, HDMI 2.1 for my PS5 & XSX, but then add something like this: https://www.sevenoakssoundandvision...BteAjFjQmF8WVgXvPDTPVi6dEPezLKVoaAnTHEALw_wcB

The only issue i have with this Stereo Amplifier is that it only has 2 ports for the speakers. I have my floor standers currently bi-amped. Does the rega have the option for bi-amping or do you know what stereo amplifier does please?
 

gibbsy

Moderator
Ok i have just had a look and come across this. If i was to get this Marantz Reciever (Marantz NR1711 Slim 7.2Ch 8K AV Receiver) as it has all the latest tech ie Dolby Atmos, HDMI 2.1 for my PS5 & XSX, but then add something like this: https://www.sevenoakssoundandvision...BteAjFjQmF8WVgXvPDTPVi6dEPezLKVoaAnTHEALw_wcB

The only issue i have with this Stereo Amplifier is that it only has 2 ports for the speakers. I have my floor standers currently bi-amped. Does the rega have the option for bi-amping or do you know what stereo amplifier does please?
The Marantz you have linked to doesn't have pre-outs and so cannot be used with HT capable stereo amps. You can bi-wire with any Rega amp, although simply not worth it because of the quality of the Elicit.

Bi-amping from an AVR, or to give it it's proper name of passive bi-amping, is again not worth it. You are still drawing power from a single PSU which has to share the power between all connected speakers. You are simply robbing Peter to pay Paul. Using the power amp connection of a HT capable stereo amp will give far better results.
 

Aziz Ismail

Novice Member
The Marantz you have linked to doesn't have pre-outs and so cannot be used with HT capable stereo amps. You can bi-wire with any Rega amp, although simply not worth it because of the quality of the Elicit.

Bi-amping from an AVR, or to give it it's proper name of passive bi-amping, is again not worth it. You are still drawing power from a single PSU which has to share the power between all connected speakers. You are simply robbing Peter to pay Paul. Using the power amp connection of a HT capable stereo amp will give far better results.
This Marantz NR1711 does have pre-out on the rear of the panel Gibsy?
My B&W were originally just connected the normal way via two speaker cables. When i bi-amped them, they literally came alive. My tweeters used to sound dull but as soon as i changed to bi-amping them, i was chuffed with the sound.

58931340-238E-4D44-A71A-33143EB03AC6.jpeg
 

gibbsy

Moderator
My bad. I can see now from your bigger image, just front left and right. I'm twice your age good boy, have a little sympathy for an old fart like me.:)

If bi-amping works for you then I'll not argue.
 

morini3andahalf

Active Member
Ok i have just had a look and come across this. If i was to get this Marantz Reciever (Marantz NR1711 Slim 7.2Ch 8K AV Receiver) as it has all the latest tech ie Dolby Atmos, HDMI 2.1 for my PS5 & XSX, but then add something like this: https://www.sevenoakssoundandvision...BteAjFjQmF8WVgXvPDTPVi6dEPezLKVoaAnTHEALw_wcB

The only issue i have with this Stereo Amplifier is that it only has 2 ports for the speakers. I have my floor standers currently bi-amped. Does the rega have the option for bi-amping or do you know what stereo amplifier does please?

For what it's worth, I have the MF M2Si (you linked to) in a second room used mostly for music, though there is a TV hooked up to it as well. I love it, as basic as you could possibly get in terms of modern day features but drives my speakers brilliantly. Not sure about the benefits of bi-amping unless you are actually going to use two physically different amplifiers, but I couldn't be happier with the sound for music listening. Night and day better for listening to music than the AVR in my main room. I know everyones perceptions are different so would be hesitant to make a recommendation for the MF, but for me it was an excellent purchase.

I've just upgraded my main room AVR so am moving the (very) old one to the second room doing exactly what you are suggesting. I will connect the pre outs for the front L/R on the AVR to the M2Si so I can get surround for TV and movies whilst keeping my vinyl and music streamer sources direct through the M2Si.
 

Jester1066

Active Member
@Aziz Ismail

Looking at the rear panel of your current Onkyo Receiver (linked in your 1st post), it has pre-outs for all the channels:

im_rear.jpg


If this is the case, you can use your existing Onkyo AVR & connect the front left & right preouts to a stereo integrated amp with HT bypass (like the Musical Fidelity you linked to)...

You don't need to buy a new AVR (unless you want to).

Currently in order for me to listen to music, i connect my MacBook to the receiver and use Tidal MQA and listen to the music in stereo mode.

I use an Audiolab 6000A in HT Bypass and plan to add a Sonos Port to add streaming capabilities to the amp:


With the Sonos, you simply link your Tidal & Spotify Streaming accounts in the Sonos App. You can link different services in the same app too. All your music from your streaming services is then available through the App via your phone. So there's no need to connect your MacBook.

Note: The Audiolab has a built in DAC,, so I can connect the Sonos Port via Coaxial. (The Musical Fidelity M2si doesn't have digital inputs). The sonos can be connected via RCA.

what I don't know is if Tidal MQA needs a DAC. If it does, you can purchase a separate DAC to use with the M2si, then connect the Sonos Port to the DAC.
 
Last edited:

Aziz Ismail

Novice Member
@Aziz Ismail

Looking at the rear panel of your current Onkyo Receiver (linked in your 1st post), it has pre-outs for all the channels:

View attachment 1464852

If this is the case, you can use your existing Onkyo AVR & connect the front left & right preouts to a stereo integrated amp with HT bypass (like the Musical Fidelity you linked to)...

You don't need to buy a new AVR (unless you want to).



I use an Audiolab 6000A in HT Bypass and plan to add a Sonos Port to add streaming capabilities to the amp:


With the Sonos, you simply link your Tidal & Spotify Streaming accounts in the Sonos App. You can link different services in the same app too. All your music from your streaming services is then available through the App via your phone. So there's no need to connect your MacBook.

Note: The Audiolab has a built in DAC,, so I can connect the Sonos Port via Coaxial. (The Musical Fidelity M2si doesn't have digital inputs). The sonos can be connected via RCA.

what I don't know is if Tidal MQA needs a DAC. If it does, you can purchase a separate DAC to use with the M2si, then connect the Sonos Port to the DAC.
Hi Jester, thank you for your reply.

Yes i was told that i can use my original Onkyo receiver with a stereo amplifier but the reason i wanted to upgrade was due to upgrading my tv to an LG CX and using both the PS5 & XSX on them, my current reciever isn’t able to handle the [email protected] so it’s currently only used via Arc to pass sound hence why i wanted to upgrade.

I like the idea of the Sonos Port. The thing that was bugging me was the issue of just paying for a more expensive AVR or going down the route of buying a new stereo amplifier and then something like the Sonos Port or a streamer. Eventually buying all three would cost the same amount as a decent AVR if that makes sense.
 

Aziz Ismail

Novice Member
For what it's worth, I have the MF M2Si (you linked to) in a second room used mostly for music, though there is a TV hooked up to it as well. I love it, as basic as you could possibly get in terms of modern day features but drives my speakers brilliantly. Not sure about the benefits of bi-amping unless you are actually going to use two physically different amplifiers, but I couldn't be happier with the sound for music listening. Night and day better for listening to music than the AVR in my main room. I know everyones perceptions are different so would be hesitant to make a recommendation for the MF, but for me it was an excellent purchase.

I've just upgraded my main room AVR so am moving the (very) old one to the second room doing exactly what you are suggesting. I will connect the pre outs for the front L/R on the AVR to the M2Si so I can get surround for TV and movies whilst keeping my vinyl and music streamer sources direct through the M2Si.
Thanks for your reply.

I am now considering just buying the Marantz NR1711 for my Hdmi sources but then investing in the M2Si as my stereo amplifier to run the fronts. Just seeing whether the MF/Rega are that much better to use instead of something like this that matches with the Marantz AVR.


This stereo amplifier has the option for me to bi-amp my fronts whereas the M2Si doesn’t. Struggling to find a stereo amplifier that does have 4 speaker terminals to allow me to bi-amp. I have read that newer speakers for example the Q Acoustic 3050’s have really good cross overs so bi-amping isn’t really required however I’m running B&W 684 S1’s which are quiet old now hence why bi-amping made them sound better than just running a single cable.

Are the likes of Rega and Musical Fidelity that good over the likes of Marantz?
 

morini3andahalf

Active Member

This stereo amplifier has the option for me to bi-amp my fronts whereas the M2Si doesn’t. Struggling to find a stereo amplifier that does have 4 speaker terminals to allow me to bi-amp. I have read that newer speakers for example the Q Acoustic 3050’s have really good cross overs so bi-amping isn’t really required however I’m running B&W 684 S1’s which are quiet old now hence why bi-amping made them sound better than just running a single cable.

Are the likes of Rega and Musical Fidelity that good over the likes of Marantz?

I'm sure that Marantz amp would be a fine purchase, but personally I'd buy a Musical Fidelity or Rega in preference. I'm still not sure what you actually gain from bi-amping when using only one amplifier to be honest. That Marantz may have A+B speaker outputs but the power supply puts out the same regardless what speakers you have connected. I thought to get real benefit from bi-amping you needed two physically separate amps each with their own power supply.

I tried this myself many years ago bi-amping my fronts by using a spare surround channel on my AVR. Couldn't tell any difference so went back to a single cable. I could be wrong on this, but I'd say doing what you suggest by hooking up the A and B speaker outputs to the same speakers is a bit pointless.
 

Aziz Ismail

Novice Member
My bad. I can see now from your bigger image, just front left and right. I'm twice your age good boy, have a little sympathy for an old fart like me.:)

If bi-amping works for you then I'll not argue.
Hahha thanks. This using HT bypass seems more of a headache than just upgrading to a beefy more expensive AVR.
3A680765-A66F-4764-A3D9-9F1FDB2AA04B.jpeg
 

gibbsy

Moderator
The power amp on a good quality stereo amp should not colour the audio of the overall system. It's always going to be the pre-amp of the AV amp that is the biggest influence, as it is with a stereo amp and the pre-amp on the stereo amp is completely by-passed.

If you go for a AV amp then get the best you can afford and I suggest you avoid Denon models unless it the top of the range X8500. There is no timbre mismatch with my Denon and Rega combination.

I would get the AV amp in the first instance and if you're happy then nothing is lost. If you feel an integrated stereo amp is needed then again nothing is lost as that is an easy upgrade path.
 

CaptainJames

Well-known Member

Aziz Ismail

Novice Member
The power amp on a good quality stereo amp should not colour the audio of the overall system. It's always going to be the pre-amp of the AV amp that is the biggest influence, as it is with a stereo amp and the pre-amp on the stereo amp is completely by-passed.

If you go for a AV amp then get the best you can afford and I suggest you avoid Denon models unless it the top of the range X8500. There is no timbre mismatch with my Denon and Rega combination.

I would get the AV amp in the first instance and if you're happy then nothing is lost. If you feel an integrated stereo amp is needed then again nothing is lost as that is an easy upgrade path.
I have just spoken to a rep at another store and explained what i wanted to achieve.
It just seems they don’t really understand the whole reciever and stereo amplifier working together when the AVR can do it all in one box so to speak. (I couldn’t be bothered trying to explain in detail)

I have looked at these particular AV Receivers;

Marantz SR7015
Anthem MRX540
Arcam AVR390 or AVR10
Yamaha RX-A2A

Does anyone have any idea on either of these AV receivers as to which I should consider or if there's any receivers I have missed please let me know.
 

Aziz Ismail

Novice Member
Also can anyone try to explain this to me. Do my speakers need to match the receivers wattage output?
My B&W 684's are rated between 25 to 150w
685's are rated between 25 to 100w
HTM 62 Centre is rated between 25 to 120w.

My current Onkyo is showing a rating of 180wpc. Looking at the specs of some of the receivers on my list, for example the Arcam AVR390 is rated at 60wpc? Is this something I need to consider when buying a receiver. I don't obviously want to invest in a new receiver to find out that it can't power my speakers etc.
 

dante01

Distinguished Member
Also can anyone try to explain this to me. Do my speakers need to match the receivers wattage output?
My B&W 684's are rated between 25 to 150w
685's are rated between 25 to 100w
HTM 62 Centre is rated between 25 to 120w.

My current Onkyo is showing a rating of 180wpc. Looking at the specs of some of the receivers on my list, for example the Arcam AVR390 is rated at 60wpc? Is this something I need to consider when buying a receiver. I don't obviously want to invest in a new receiver to find out that it can't power my speakers etc.


No, the amplification simply needs to be enough to power the speakers. The max rating given relates to the maximum wattage you'd be able to output to those speakers without potentially damaging them. The power required will be the lower figure.

It would be ordinarilly suggested that you buy an amp that can potentially output slightly more power than the speakers rated handling ability. This is in order to give you some headroom.As long as the amplification isn't inordinately powerful, it would be pretty difficult to even actually attain the wattage your speakers are rated to be able to handle. You'd need to be pushing the amp to its limits and playing audio at levels detrimental to your hearing to reach this point in most setups or within most small to medoium sized rooms.

You may find this of interest:



Note that your Onkyo AV receiver is very unlikely to be rated 180 watts per channel all channels driven at 8 or even 6 ohms?


The wattage output is only important if and when you actually need it. Having wattage you don't need is unlikely to even be of any advantage. Low THD and dynamic power are however very desirable.

The B&W 684 speakers only need a minimum of 25 watts to drive them, the same is true of the 685 speakers. You'd be advised not to constantly deliver anything more than 100 watts to the 685 and 120 watts to the 683 speakers.



NOTE The actual rating for your Onkyo AVR is as follows:
180 W/Ch (6 Ohms, 1 kHz, 1% THD, 1 Channel Driven

So that is basically driving one 6ohm speaker at 1 kHz and not full range (20 Hz to 20 kHz).

A more realstic appraisal is that given relative to a 6ohm load 2 channels driven at 6ohm which result in 130 watts per channel from 20 Hz to 20 kHz, with a maximum total harmonic distortion of 0.08%.

You'd be getting even less power than this if driving more speakers though and if their impedance is greater than 6ohms.
 
Last edited:

Jester1066

Active Member
Also can anyone try to explain this to me. Do my speakers need to match the receivers wattage output?
My B&W 684's are rated between 25 to 150w
685's are rated between 25 to 100w
HTM 62 Centre is rated between 25 to 120w.

No....

As long as the Receivers wattage per channel is within the range that the speakers are rated, you'll be ok. The sensitivity of the speaker is arguably more relevant.

My current Onkyo is showing a rating of 180wpc. Looking at the specs of some of the receivers on my list, for example the Arcam AVR390 is rated at 60wpc? Is this something I need to consider when buying a receiver. I don't obviously want to invest in a new receiver to find out that it can't power my speakers etc.
The figure of 180wpc quoted is if you were driving 1 speaker. In reality Obviously no one does this. The onkyo has a rating of 130wpc (2 channels driven). But driving more speakers will reduce this further.

Edit @dante01 has explained this far better than I have. Cheers pal! 😂
 

gibbsy

Moderator
My current Onkyo is showing a rating of 180wpc. Looking at the specs of some of the receivers on my list, for example the Arcam AVR390 is rated at 60wpc? Is this something I need to consider when buying a receiver. I don't obviously want to invest in a new receiver to find out that it can't power my speakers etc.
You can take the figure of the Onkyo with quite a big pinch of salt. Manufacturers play fast and loose with power output and when you delve into the specifications you can find that some of those figures are just for two channels being driven. Often the highest quoted figure is for one channel.

On paper and with audio performance in mind the logical choice would be Arcam, Anthem, Marantz and Yamaha. There is a caveat in that choice as both Arcam and Anthem come with considerably better room EQ than the other two, but is harder to set up. You have to be certain of your computer skills.

The Marantz is an absolute doddle to set up and you can make finer adjustments by using the Audyssey App and is not as complicated as Dirac found on the Arcam. Arcam and Anthem are not without their problems with firmware and I suggest you read through the various owners' threads on the makes. Personally I couldn't live with Arcam because I'm incompetent and if things go wrong, which they can do with Arcam, I be asking the unit to pick a window as it would be leaving.
 

Jester1066

Active Member
Personally I couldn't live with Arcam because I'm incompetent and if things go wrong, which they can do with Arcam, I be asking the unit to pick a window as it would be leaving.
This made me 😂!

So in summary, you could call @gibbsy a "Set, forget - with the occasional fiddle" kinda guy! 😂😉
 

Aziz Ismail

Novice Member
No, the amplification simply needs to be enough to power the speakers. The max rating given relates to the maximum wattage you'd be able to output to those speakers without potentially damaging them. The power required will be the lower figure.

It would be ordinarilly suggested that you buy an amp that can potentially output slightly more power than the speakers rated handling ability. This is in order to give you some headroom.As long as the amplification isn't inordinately powerful, it would be pretty difficult to even actually attain the wattage your speakers are rated to be able to handle. You'd need to be pushing the amp to its limits and playing audio at levels detrimental to your hearing to reach this point in most setups or within most small to medoium sized rooms.

You may find this of interest:



Note that your Onkyo AV receiver is very unlikely to be rated 180 watts per channel all channels driven at 8 or even 6 ohms?


The wattage output is only important if and when you actually need it. Having wattage you don't need is unlikely to even be of any advantage. Low THD and dynamic power are however very desirable.

The B&W 684 speakers only need a minimum of 25 watts to drive them, the same is true of the 685 speakers. You'd be advised not to constantly deliver anything more than 100 watts to the 685 and 120 watts to the 683 speakers.



NOTE The actual rating for your Onkyo AVR is as follows:
180 W/Ch (6 Ohms, 1 kHz, 1% THD, 1 Channel Driven

So that is basically driving one 6ohm speaker at 1 kHz and not full range (20 Hz to 20 kHz).

A more realstic appraisal is that given relative to a 6ohm load 2 channels driven at 6ohm which result in 130 watts per channel from 20 Hz to 20 kHz, with a maximum total harmonic distortion of 0.08%.

You'd be getting even less power than this if driving more speakers though and if their impedance is greater than 6ohms.
Thanks for this explanation.

I'm not quiet sure what to do with my current setup now lol. The AV Receivers i mentioned above all show lower wattage than what i have now but if you're saying i don't need all that power to drive them then the Arcam should be suffice to drive them. However reading online, i think i'm going to avoid Arcam just now as there seems to be a lot of negative discussions about the firmware and being able to handle 4k @120hz etc.

Would i be better trading in my speakers for ones that have a better sensitivity or stick to upgrading the receiver first?
 

Aziz Ismail

Novice Member
You can take the figure of the Onkyo with quite a big pinch of salt. Manufacturers play fast and loose with power output and when you delve into the specifications you can find that some of those figures are just for two channels being driven. Often the highest quoted figure is for one channel.

On paper and with audio performance in mind the logical choice would be Arcam, Anthem, Marantz and Yamaha. There is a caveat in that choice as both Arcam and Anthem come with considerably better room EQ than the other two, but is harder to set up. You have to be certain of your computer skills.

The Marantz is an absolute doddle to set up and you can make finer adjustments by using the Audyssey App and is not as complicated as Dirac found on the Arcam. Arcam and Anthem are not without their problems with firmware and I suggest you read through the various owners' threads on the makes. Personally I couldn't live with Arcam because I'm incompetent and if things go wrong, which they can do with Arcam, I be asking the unit to pick a window as it would be leaving.
I see, i like to just set things up and sit back and enjoy. I don't like to constantly tweak so trying to manually calibrate the room EQ isn't something i would be good at. I originally had a lad who fitted my old man's Bang & Olufsen Home Theatre to come and sort mine out but this was many years ago. He done all the calibrating for the sound and set up my TV.

I have read about the firmware on the Arcam and the amount of customers who have returned their receivers. This has really put me off.

Do you think my speakers are too old and maybe i should upgrade the speakers instead of the receiver?
 

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