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Yamaha R-N500 with DALI zensor 1


Established Member
Hello all,

I got a quick question and I would love some input from people that are more experienced than me when it comes to Audio Systems.

I can get a really good deal from a friend of mine who has a company that does wholesale of Yamaha and Dali equipment. He has access to other brands as well but unfortunately he can’t get any good deals on those at the moment.


I am thinking of buying a pair of Dali Zensor 1 and connect them with a Yamaha R-N500. I need Optical inputs and AirPlay (I got apple TV so I can use it from there anyway but again is a nice addition to be built-in). Since all of my music is digital (mp3 320kbps) I definitely need optical and airplay plus I can connect it to the TV and enjoy my movies TV shows etc.

I was thinking of Denon CEOL Piccolo DRA-N5 which is cheaper than Yamaha but is a completely different level of quality and power.

On the other hand is it worth it to spend approx. 490euro from the Yamaha amp and use it with the DALIs?

I would love to know your opinion.



Distinguished Member
I found the Yamaha R-N500 in Germany for between €420 and €449 -

Yamaha R-N500 schwarz

So the price of €490 is really no discount at all. I think the R-N500 has both DLNA and Apple Airplay capability. It has 80w/ch, DAC-2xOptical, 2xCoaxial, 1xUSB-Media, Sub out, PHONO in, though the AM/FM is not of high value now, but you would get access to Internet Radio.

I personally would not consider a compact Mini-Amp, long on features they may be, they the tend to be short on power. Plus, if you cram all that Stuff into one box, what does that make each aspect worth?

The only other suggestion I might give, assuming you have the money and the room, is to consider the Dali Zensor 3, which is a bigger bookshelf speaker with some pretty substantial performance.

The Dali Zensor 3 seem to be consistently €398/pr -

Dali Zensor 3 - Google-Suche

That is considerably more expensive than the Zensor 1, but it is considerably more speaker.

Though it depends on how you would use the speakers, the type of music, whether you would also watch movies, and so on. The Zensor 1 are a good basic all round speaker, at a very attractive price of about €278/pr -

Dali Zensor 1 - Google-Suche

But the Zensor 3 are going to move more air and have deeper bass, but they are also physically bigger.

You could consider some CANTON -

Canton GLE 436 weiß (GLE436, EAN: 4010243032665) Regallautsprecher

There is also a smaller Canton GLE 426 model available.

I used Germany as an example, simply so the prices would come up in EUROs.

The Yamaha R-N500 is a pretty versatile amp with very decent power. I would personally favor it over an all-in-one Mini-amp even though the Mini-Amp might give a few more features.

As to the speakers, the Zensor 1 have received very positive reviews. But these are not bass heavy speakers. Though not being bass heavy means they are much easier to place and work well in corners. close to the wall, or on desktops. But, if the money was available, I think the Zensor 3 would be a more versatile and satisfying speaker. Still, your money, your life.

Just a few thoughts.



Established Member
Hello Steve,

Thank you for the reply. In my country the Yamaha retails for about 550euro so 490euro is a good price for me! if i get it online with shipping etc it will cost me aprox. 500euro

I went for a demo today for Q acoustics 2050i which i can get for 430euro. Someone placed an order but there was a misunderstanding with the color so they are giving them for 430euro. I really liked the sound but i think the bass was a bit too much for my taste during the listing. I listen to Trip-hop, rockabilly, jazz and some instrumental on and off. although it is a bargain 430 euro i think the sound is not what i am looking for in terms of bass. My main concern is that one of the two speaker will be placed near a wall corner so the bass will bounce and i might end up with a boomy effect than a reach bass effect.

Now for the DALI Zensor 3 i can get them for 330euro but unfortunately i cannot demo them. Same with the Zensor 1 which i can get for 260euro.

On top of that if i go with the DALIs (1 or 3) i will need a pair of stands as well so that has to be considered.

I was planning to spend 700euro-750euro max but as i see now i will need 850-900 for sure.

The only thing that it can be descried as a "concern" is the QA 2050i bass.

Any additional thoughts or opinion will be highly appreciated.

Thanks again.


Established Member
So.. Taking into account yesterday’s calculations I somehow changed my mind and I am going for a more budget setup so I would love to hear any thoughts or suggestions. I had to consider speaker stands, cables etc. so I was totally out of budget.

Instead of R-N500 I will go for AS-500 or AS-300 and a really cheap LINDY SPDIF Digital to Analogue Stereo Audio Converter (which surprisingly has really good reviews both from whathifi.com and amazon) which will be connected to the apple TV to stream music directly from iTunes
Now in terms of speakers I will go for DALI Zensor 3 which I can get for about 330euro. Although DALI Zensor 1 might be better due size and flexibility of positioning I assume that will not be as good as Zensors 3 when it comes to movies. I am not talking music-wise because I am not a bass heavy music listener anyway.
I would love to hear any suggestions. Definitely I am going for the Dali speakers (Zensor 1 or Zensor 3) but I am a bit concerned with the amp. The majority of people pair Dali with Marantz or Denon. Both brands (denon Marantz) will cost an arm and a leg in my country because I can only get them from a specific dealer.

Thanks again!


Established Member
Unless you can audition I'd steer away from the yamaha ( even more so if you're looking at the dalis )
and I think you're right to be looking at the marantz and denon given the budget. You may also want to keep in mind that while the a-s500 has sub out it lacks pre-out that may come handy at some point later.

Also this thread may be of interest


Established Member
thank for the reply. based on the thread i can understand that "what you pay is what you get" is a rule that generally applies to almost anything.

Now i am looking at Marantz PM6005 which i might be able to get from amazon since it is aprox 100euros more in my country (retail). I know that is 60GBP more expensive than the Yamaha AS-500 but in that case i will not need a DAC for the apple TV.

I don't know if i can get something similar in terms of pairing (DALIs + Marantz) smoothnes with a Denon or a Pioneer and an additional DAC as the one mentioned on my previous thread.

I need to research that a bit more. The only thing that makes an audition so hard is that all hifi shop are selling some specific brands. For example one shops represents DALI, Pioneer and Audiolab, another shop Yamaha and Focal, another B&W and Denon the other one Marantz, JBL and H/K and goes on and on. So its kind of impossible to get them all together. Basically get my setup together (DALI+Yamaha / DALI+Marantz / or DALI+Denon or Pioneer) All of the three setups need an additional DAC except from the Marantz which has one out of the box.

I dont know but i got something like "a nice feeling" for the Yamaha. I auditioned one in the Past with a pair of Focals. maybe is the experienced sales man or the reviews online that push me towards the Yamaha :p

Low budget high compromises I guess

Thanks again! looking forward for any additional input.



Established Member
I recently had a home demo of the marantz pm6005 using my dali zensor 5 and my airport express for airplay and it sounded awesome. The only reason I went for the nad was for the extra optical input (it has two).


Established Member
Hello and thanks for the reply. Busy with work etc so the hi fi issue was on hold. anyhow! i just went for a demo today and i would like some input if it is possible

Apart from the Dali i am looking at focals Chorus 706V (second hand - perfect condition) so i went for a test drive. Here are the setups:

1. Focal Chorus 706V with Yamaha RN-500
2. Focal Chorus 706V with Cyrus Straight line (used but in perfect condition) and a DAC

Although i liked the cyrus, to be honest i am very concerned that the Cyrus is a really old model and i am not sure if it will be a good choice.

Tomorrow i will got to demo the Marantz PM6004 with the Focals and a DAC.

here are the prices by the way (all of the products are used except from the Yamaha)
Focal Chorus 706V (350euro)
Cyrus straight line (300euro)
Marantz PM6004 (220euros)
Yamaha RN-500 (aprx. 490euro)

Based on the above what do you think is a good setup? Since the PM6004 has so many reviews with 5stars and very positive feedback i think is worth trying it with the Focals.

additionally, do you think that Focal Chorus 706V are a better alternative to the Dali?

Thanks again and looking forward for your answers.



Established Member
How'd you find the focals with the yamaha OP?

additionally, do you think that Focal Chorus 706V are a better alternative to the Dali?

That depends on your own taste and music you listen to and the right amp connected to either speaker but I'm confident you've answered your own question by now :)

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