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powerav

AVR's and the AKM Dac

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powerav   

Have the big AVR players like Denon, Marantz, Onkyo/Integra all realised that the AKM DACS are the key for making an AVR that is finally great for music.

I have been down a very long road trying to get the best 2 channel sound from an AVR on a tight budget, I have had Yamaha Adventage, Denon 3200, Integra 30.5, Cambridge 651, and what I thought would solve the worlds big issues an Intega DHC 80.3 pre/pro with first Elektra HD2 amp and then a Rotel 1075. I was never really happy with the 2 channel sound on any of these, the best being the Cambridge 651 but totally useless as an AVR in today's world and the Denon 3200 but only when I had the Klien DAC hooked up to it so this what I am getting at being that it uses the AKM Dacs.

Anyway nearly getting there, I sold the pre/pro and amp and got a Creek Evo 2 and an Integra 30.7, the creek as we know has the HT bypass so I can connect my aries mini directly to that and away we go as happy as Larry, well until today when i though umm might switch back to the AVR and see how that goes with 2 channel music and using the Creek as the amp. Well telling the difference was very hard indeed, now I know that the Creek is a very fine bit of gear because I know that it easily outperforms the Integra 80.3 pre and amps for 2 channel hence why I never bother using the newer Integra 30.7 for 2 channel music before as my thought process was how could a sub $1000 dollar AVR be even remotely as good as a well over $3000 pre/amp combo.

It looks like to me that the common denominator here are the AKM Dacs.

The Integra 30.7 is even much better than the pre/pro and amp combo for all surround stuff as well.

 

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Satanica   

I don't know why, but I feel I must say this.

 

Don't fully trust your sighted perceptions of audio equipment. Because of our biases, lack of proper audio quality memory and the inability to switch quickly between components leads us to perceptions and conclusions that are less than perfect. Always question yourself, at least a little.

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I don't think you can be fully objective with the appreciation of music reproduction. You either like it. Or you don't. And it's not always something you can measure.

I will second the theory that AKM DACs do sound better.

I've preferred the new TEAC UD503 to most Sabre32 ones. And preferred the BurrBrown UD501 over the Sabre32s before that.

We recently got an Integra DRX4 in the store and i thought I was going to hate it for stereo. Seeing as I hated most Onkyos and Integras to this point. But it really wasn't half bad - as far as AVRs go. So I flicked thru the spec sheet and lo and behold - AKM inside.

Clay went through a similar revelation when he was building the Giseler. And prompted him to switch from BurrBrown to AKMS

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powerav   
55 minutes ago, DoggieHowser said:

We recently got an Integra DRX4 in the store and i thought I was going to hate it for stereo. Seeing as I hated most Onkyos and Integras to this point. But it really wasn't half bad - as far as AVRs go. So I flicked thru the spec sheet and lo and behold - AKM inside.

Thank you so I believe I do have a half a clue, I should have enough experience now to know what is good and what isn't.

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powerav   

More testing today and 2 channel from this AVR is excellent, it is on par with the Creek integrated amp, impossible to pick the difference.

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Satanica   
48 minutes ago, powerav said:

More testing today and 2 channel from this AVR is excellent, it is on par with the Creek integrated amp, impossible to pick the difference.

 

Is this with the AVR powering the speakers or the integrated (acting as a power amplifier) ? 

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powerav   
1 minute ago, Satanica said:

 

Is this with the AVR powering the speakers or the integrated (acting as a power amplifier) ? 

Yes good point, integrated used as power amp. I see a power amp as a must for modern avr's. I will more than likely get a 2 channel power amp and hopefully keep the Creek for a cool little second system because it is very good.

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I expect the Marantz AV8802A processor with 8 x AKM4490s would be worth a punt once their new 8803/4 arrives.

You'll lose Dolby Vision pass through but otherwise it is compliant with HDMI2.0a/HDCP2.2 and all the latest standards including 7.2.4 Atmos and DTS X

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powerav   
39 minutes ago, DoggieHowser said:

I expect the Marantz AV8802A processor with 8 x AKM4490s

Yes 100% same DAC as the Mighty Klein which many say is on par with a dac worth $2000 or more so why anyone would buy a separate DAC for these amazes me.

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corza13   

I'd agree with this. I have the Onkyo RZ3100 with the AKM's and it is by far the best AVR I have heard. I am looking to go back to separates soon and may just get a power amp to start, but it will be the new Onkyo Pre Pro or the Anthem with the AKM's. I think they are the top of the tree for sure. 

 

I understand there are more things that go into the analogue sections but I think they have a sound that is simply more transparent and engaging than any others, including the ESS Sabre.

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