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Worth upgrading my Sony STR-DB1070?

Discussion in 'AV Receivers & Amplifiers' started by dAvE6, May 26, 2002.

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  1. dAvE6

    dAvE6
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    It was the first amp i ever owned. The only amp i have ever owned since getting into home cinema about a year ago. Following from the aclaim that the STR-DB940 set, i assumed it would be more of the same. So i was quite disturbed today when i read the HCC review of it which gave it a 2.5 star rating for sound! So it seems, i may not be getting nearly as much out of my speakers as i should be...

    My speaker setup is this:

    B&W 603 S3 front speakers
    B&W 601 S3 rear speakers
    B&W LCR 600 S3 centre speaker
    REL Q200 subwoofer

    So will upgrading to the £800 DENON AVR-3802 make much of a difference to music and movies??

    Or is my speaker setup too budget range for it to really make much of an improvement? I.E. is the denon designed for higher end speakers? £800 is a lot of money. But if i have ONE weakness/unbalanced peice in my setup then it appears to be the amp.

    If anyone thinks anything else is astray, like the sub for example, then please let me know.

    Or would it be better to spend even MORE to make the improvement more worthwhile? Amps are something i know little about. So any advice would be greatly apreciated.

    Thanks a lot.
     
  2. Ian J

    Ian J
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    I had my 1070 for a few months before I sold it and replaced it with a Marantz 6200.

    The improvement was quite drastic especially with music although the sound steering was also improved in DD use.

    The 3802 is a quality amp although arguably not as good as the equivalent Marantz for music and is certainly not overkill for your speakers.

    You will also get PL2 as well.

    Incidentally the target price for a Denon 3802 is about £650 or less.
     
  3. Whatts

    Whatts
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    I prefer the Denon so I upgraded from the Sony 1070 to the 3802.
    I think you'll surely be able to notice the difference with your speaker-setup. But you'll have to decide for yourself if it's worth spending £800 (shop around, you should be able to get a better price), so make sure you get a decent demo.

    To be honest I didn't think the review in HCC was completely fair, Sony amps have always sounded different to most other amps (I find they emphasise high tones more), this is just a matter of personal preference.

    By the way, If I could afford them right now, I'd go for the same speakers as you've got.

    - Tom -
     
  4. JSW

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  5. Craig_Nike

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    I have found that there is considerable bias away from Sony when it comes to the audiophile community.

    I'm sure there are some people that dont like the way Sony sounds, but like JSW said, take them with a pinch of salt.

    Alot IMHO is tall poppy syndrome. i.e. how can such a big global brand who sell walkmans, be good at making expensive audio equipment. Some people just like to buy smaller brands who are more focussed on hifi and claim that consequently the quality is better.

    If you change amps based on what 1 guy has to say, you may be sorely dissapointed with the 'improvement' you get when you get it back to the house. Theres no question the 3802 or the 5200 Marantz are great amps, but how much better the sound is when it reaches the ears, is a VERY personal thing.

    Gotta listen side by side. (Dont listent to the mugs instore either - usually they get paid top steer you in 1 direction).
     
  6. dAvE6

    dAvE6
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    thanks for the comments so far.

    A warmer sound is definetly something i prefer. When i bought the Sony, i was so new to home cinema that i didn't know any better.

    I guess i'll have to audition a Denon first. If there isn't a considerable percieved improvement then it's probably not worth it, and i would then leave it for a couple of years before getting the next best thing.

    Incidentally, what are regarded as the best amps in the £700-£1000 price range?
     
  7. russraff

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    Craig is absolutely correct. Listen yourself, and for God's sake don't change 'cause some reviewer said that your purchase is poor. A review is, after all, just someone’s opinion. I, for example, do not think the 3802 is a particularly good amp, whereas Craig does.
    As for amps in your price bracket, you could go for a Yamaha AX1, or A10SE (which I have and think is miles better than the 3802), or the Harman/Kardon 5500 if you want some grunt. My friend has said many good things of the £800 Onkyo model, but warm sounding wasn't one of them.
    Again - get a home dem, and preferably some mates to listen with you (incase you are convincing yourself that something sounds better), to be totally sure.

    Hope this helps – Russell
     
  8. gringottsdirect

    gringottsdirect
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    Tall Poppy Syndrome, yes lots, but even more... The Emperor's New Clothes. Always and Forever, it's the way it works.
    The only answer has to be yes.
     
  9. paiger

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    I would have to agree with Craig that many on these forums simply don't like Sony and let that influence their judgement. I have a 940 and am quite happy with it although I am aware that there may be better kit out there. As for how much difference you will notice by upgrading, you will have to listen. Personally I have considered changing to a Denon 2802, Marantz 5200 and a few others. The best sounding to me was the Marantz but I prefer music to movies. At the end of the day I can't see enough improvement to make it worthwhile, I feel I'll be spending a lot of money just to get DPL2 (tempting though). What I have demo'd is a Denon AVC-A11SR and that simply blew me away. So, until I have saved up enough pennies, I'll stick to my 940.

    By the way, I just saw a 1070 make well over £300 on Ebay and you can pick up good amps for around that if you do decide to go for it.

    Steve
     
  10. Ian J

    Ian J
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    I had the 1070 but haven't heard the 940. My understanding is that whilst the 940 was a good amp the 1070 was a retrograde step.

    Whether there are people on this forum who don't like Sony or not there are two on this thread who like Sony enough to buy the 1070 and then disliked this specific model enough to sell it again.

    There are three answers on this thread urging the originator to have a demo. That goes without question on almost every query posed on the forum and is really superfluous.

    dAvE6 asked a specific question - "will he notice much of a difference in movies and music by exchanging his Sony 1070 for a Denon 3802 and the answer is either yes or no.

    My opinion is Yes
     
  11. Whatts

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    Ian J,

    I'm one of those two guys that bought the 1070 and then changed it again (to a 3802).
    It's not that I disliked the 1070, after a while I just had more cash to spend and felt that there were better amps out there for my (new and improved) budget.

    But my answer to dAvE6's specific question - "will he notice much of a difference in movies and music by exchanging his Sony 1070 for a Denon 3802" is also yes...

    - Tom -
     
  12. Monster

    Monster
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    I recently swapped a Sony 940 for the Denon 2802.

    Personally I find the Denon far better. Music is far nicer (rounder?) and warmer sounding and the sound steering seems to be far better.

    I was hoping for some general improvement in sound but really wanted PLII and the option for 6/7.1. I got the lot and the overall sound improvement was far more than I expected. Given that I sold the 940 for £285 and got the 2802 for £479 IMO it has been a most worthwhile upgrade.

    Trying to get the ultimate upgrade at the moment......at detached house!!:D
     
  13. stranger

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    as well as the denon 3802, have a listen to sonys str-va555es. its available at around £720.00 and a great receiver imo.
     
  14. dAvE6

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    I've never heard of that Denon you mention- the AVC-A11SR. Is it in my price range? Oh...I just noticed the £1700 price tag.

    Well, a warm sounding, FULL sounding amp with especial attention going to music is important for me. But accuracy of direction is also important for music.

    I always thought my 603 speakers sounded a little thin and shrill in the midrange. Because of the amp??
     
  15. paiger

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    I was just making the point that I have not heard anything that has made me want to part with more cash under £1000. Others may dissagree but that's what my ears tell me. I did audition your B+W's before deciding on Ruarks and they sounded very warm and melodious to me. I just felt they lacked a bit of punch. I reckon you should demo a Marantz 5200/6200 with your speakers and see what you think.

    S
     
  16. gringottsdirect

    gringottsdirect
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    Monster,
    Don't rush to buy the ultimate upgrade. Indulge your equipment wishes for now, in 12 months time detached houses will be available for less. The UK housing stock is currently the most over-valued in Europe.
    Stay where you live now, take a good holiday this year, and let it rip next year with all the repossesed properties at good deals.
    Wait and see.
     
  17. Monster

    Monster
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    Gringotts,

    A brave statement:eek: :eek:
    Perhaps you should change your name to Nostradamus!

    I work with some residential valuation surveyors (not estate agents!)and I have looked at RICS stats. That and the overwhelming urge to get out of the house i am in now means I gotta go! Also property prices where I live and want to get another house are fairly depessed compared to the surrounding area. I don't think there is going to be any great drop in prices(I hope :confused: ). There will be some inflationary correction over time but it will be slow.

    I was wondering though, should I go for a house with a timber floor or concrete. Timber might tighten the bass and extend the sound stage. Thought I might get the place underpinned to provide isolation from external vibration;)
     
  18. gringottsdirect

    gringottsdirect
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    Monster,
    It's subjective, but I have a timber floor in my main listening room and I prefer it over concrete, especially with twin subs working in the cellar below.
    Do try before buying.
     

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