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Marc

Budget A/V Receiver Recommendations Please

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Hey guys, as we prepare to move into our new house I'm slowly trying to piece together a new HT system.

I'm trying to find the best of both worlds for my HT system but also want the ability to play back 2 channel as accurately as possible in this compromise.

The budget for the Amp/AV Receiver is ~ $1500.00 and new or second hand is OK.

From an A/V perspective, I need more rather than less video inputs.

I have:

- Foxtel

- HD Set Top Box (this may not be necessary soon as Free to Air channels move over to Foxtel box)

- Media PC (VGA output - this 'can' go direct to Plasma)

I want to be able to switch all my inputs, both video and corresponding audio via the receiver.

I need something with enough grunt to drive my HT which at the moment is Morel Satellites and Sub, but will be upgrading to decent floor standers in the very near future, and will likely need to be able to output to another amplifier for subwoofer duties at some point soon as well.

I'm after your recommendations based on functionality and future proof for at least 2 years, sound and build quality, and working within the budget of $1500 or thereabouts.

I hope I've provided enough information to receive some advice? Thanks in advance guys :rolleyes: and Merry Xmas :)

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Thanks guys ... the Yamaha certainly looks the goods.

Onkyo ... was familiar with them growing up with dad always being a fan - now all I here about though is Onkyo being a 'cheap' brand compared to what they once were.

In terms of build quality, reliability and sound quality, would you guys prefer an Onkyo or Yamaha?

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Guest JohnA

a few things

you say you want the ability to play back 2 channel as accurately as possible in this compromise.

Unfortunately most AVR's lack in this department. Are you going to be using a dedicated CDP or using your DVD/combo player to listen to cd's?

How accurate is accurate for you?

Also you say you would like to be future proof for at least 2 years

does this also mean you would like all the latest sound formats like true dd, DTS master etc etc, or will just normal dts and DD be enough?

now if i were to take into account you already realise that any AVR will not do 2 channel justice, and you are looking at all the latest decoding formats then maybe something like the denon 2808

http://cgi.ebay.com.au/DENON-AVR-2808-AVR2...1QQcmdZViewItem

or the 3808

if you purchase from singapore they should both fit into your budget

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Thanks for your response John ....

A little more info ... I expected that "AVR's" would lack in true sound quality. What do most of you do? Have two seperate setup's, one for HT and one for 2 Ch?

When I say future proof ... DTS and DD would be suffiecent for me at this point in time. I'm planning on a Blu-Ray player also, would this be suffiecent for CD playback also?

I do like the sound of the Yamaha Joz has for sale at the moment (IIRC you ran Yamaha gear John before you went all out? Was that adequate at the time for you?)

It seems like I will ultimately end up with two independant systems down the track, but with the money spent on new house / boat / 4x4, it hasn't left as much as I would have liked for the other audio toys :rolleyes:

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Also, which would you prefer out of the Denon you mentioned above, and the Yamaha suggested in this thread - approximately the same RRP's.

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Guest JohnA

basicaly what we do Marc is use a seperate 2 channel pre amp with HT bypass and integrate it with our HT setups.

I use to have a yamaha receiver and it was great for HT but for 2 channel it just wasn't up to the task.

I still had it when i purchased my B&W 703 speakers and it was then that i knew it had to go. I just found the yamaha sound was too bright it 2 channel mode and lacked in other areas

However as a starting point the yamaha that joz is selling will be great and could be a keeper for HT duties, then you can always add a 2 channel pe amp and a good 2 channel power amp as funds permit, once that is done then you can look towards a dedicated cd player as unfortunately the blu ray player just won't cut it.

Now since there are plans for you to get a blu ray player, you might want to consider an avr with the latest decoders in it unless you plan to run analogue out to the avr and use the players decoders

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Guest JohnA
Also, which would you prefer out of the Denon you mentioned above, and the Yamaha suggested in this thread - approximately the same RRP's.[/b]

the denon has all the latest features including hdmi 1.3 which may be a consideration for blu ray and hd dvd

i heard the higher end denon 4808 and was amazed at how well it performed with HT

haven't heard the 2808 though, but the 3808 has had some rave reviews.

Maybe ask Joz if he is happy to bring the yamaha around to your place so you can try first, then go from there

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Ahhh this is exactly the sort of info I need to know ... cheers :rolleyes:

I don't expect I would be too pleased with an AV/R as far as 2 channel goes, but I imagine I could make do with it until at least next xmas and piece together a 2ch setup as you mention.

So at the moment I'm tossing up between Yamaha and Denon for the AVR, and matching dedicated DVD Player. It sounds pointless for the moment buying a high end CDP if the rest of the system is not up to scratch so will probably make use of the DVD player for CD playback as well. Blu-Ray I'm in no real hurry for so that can wait a little too.

I'm leaning more on the Denon side for build quality, and adding on components in the future I think.

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Guest JohnA

soud like a good plan

if going the denon, import at as they are around half the price in singapore comaped to hear and you might squeeze in the 3808

http://cgi.ebay.com.au/DENON-AVR-3808-1080...1QQcmdZViewItem

thats obviously imported and he would be making a healthy profit on it also, so direct from HK should be close to your budget

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Hi

I think Joz is selling his Yamaha 2700 for $1500 at the moment, you could send him a PM and find out? its a pretty good receiver for the money, he's only had it for a few months and im sure it would be well looked after knowing Joz.

Cheers George

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Heres a link to the thread on AVL forum.

2700 for sale[/b]

Hah! thanks GG

or HERE

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Hah! thanks GG

or HERE[/b]

or even in the first and second post of this thread... :rolleyes:

gee do you guys read before you post :biggrin:

(already trying to sell it for you joz)

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or even in the first and second post of this thread... :rolleyes:

gee do you guys read before you post :biggrin:

(already trying to sell it for you joz)[/b]

Thanks Hefto i did actually see it.

Thanks again mate :)

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or even in the first and second post of this thread... :)

gee do you guys read before you post :biggrin:

(already trying to sell it for you joz)[/b]

woops sorry :blush:

only brushed over the thread very quickly didn't look :rolleyes:

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maybe i failed to mention though if your after a new cd player marc........

:wink:

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Marc if your looking for an all in one DVD / Blu-Ray / Games / Media centre I can highly recommend the Sony Play Station 3. Its the best Blu-Ray player on the market at the moment as its decoding is all done in software and as such is fully upgradable as sony release software updates. They seem to be releasing them in a steady stream which currently keeps them up with the stand alone players and surpasses them when new features are released.

I have upgraded mine to the latest software 2.10 which enables profile 1.1 for blu-ray and allows media streaming from you pc... DivX etc.

Its also quite good with upscaling SD DVD's via HDMI.

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Guest JohnA
Marc if your looking for an all in one DVD / Blu-Ray / Games / Media centre I can highly recommend the Sony Play Station 3. Its the best Blu-Ray player on the market at the moment as its decoding is all done in software and as such is fully upgradable as sony release software updates. They seem to be releasing them in a steady stream which currently keeps them up with the stand alone players and surpasses them when new features are released.

I have upgraded mine to the latest software 2.10 which enables profile 1.1 for blu-ray and allows media streaming from you pc... DivX etc.

Its also quite good with upscaling SD DVD's via HDMI.[/b]

if he goes with the ps3 then he will definately need one of the new AVR's to take advantage of the latest formats as there is no analogue outs on it. HDMI or optic only isn't it and optic won't carry the new formats

Drizt does the ps3 allow dts MA to pass via bitstream via hdmi?

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if he goes with the ps3 then he will definately need one of the new AVR's to take advantage of the latest formats as there is no analogue outs on it. HDMI or optic only isn't it and optic won't carry the new formats

Drizt does the ps3 allow dts MA to pass via bitstream via hdmi?[/b]

Not possitive as I don't have HDMI avr to check it.... i'll do some some web surfing later on to see what I can find.

The best thing is that its all decoded / controlled in software. So all that is needed even if its not capable of it at the moment is to have the software upgraded. I know, I know, if its not there now theres no garantee that it will be.

I will get back to you on that one.

P.S. I have 9 Blu-Ray movies now and 6 of them have DTS HD Master Audio.... interesting I thought.

Edit:

it would seem that the PS3 is not enabled yet to bitstream any of the HD codecs. Although it can decode them to LPCM and transfer them via HDMI (except for DTS HD Master Audio). From the reading I just did there are strong rumours that sony will enable it eventually. Most of the rumours surrounding the PS3 have come true thus far. Im happy enough with what you get for the money with the PS3... its an awesome entry point into the HD world, and the fact that it plays games and is a media centre enabled unit is such a bonus. Fingers crossed sony keeps up the good work with the software updates to enable more features as time goes on.

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Guest JohnA

blu ray definately has the better audio over hd dvd

if they don't have dts MA then they have the uncompressed audio which is also awsome

again you need hdmi or analogue outs to do this.

Only reason i mention this is that if marc does decide to go this way on a blu ray player he will need to work out of he realy wants the latest formats or not. He will also idealy want a receiver that passes audio via hdmi and would preferably want it to have hdmi 1.3 to be future proofed

Drizt not having a go at the ps3 as a player, just making sure Marc knows all the facts before taking the plunge.

Sure there are better players out there, like pioneers new one, but damn expensive. Suppose it depends on what he wants in a blu ray player.

I thought of the ps3 but no analogue outs ruled it out for me as i had no intentions of upgrading my processor for a while

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blu ray definately has the better audio over hd dvd

if they don't have dts MA then they have the uncompressed audio which is also awsome

again you need hdmi or analogue outs to do this.

Only reason i mention this is that if marc does decide to go this way on a blu ray player he will need to work out of he realy wants the latest formats or not. He will also idealy want a receiver that passes audio via hdmi and would preferably want it to have hdmi 1.3 to be future proofed

Drizt not having a go at the ps3 as a player, just making sure Marc knows all the facts before taking the plunge.

Sure there are better players out there, like pioneers new one, but damn expensive. Suppose it depends on what he wants in a blu ray player.

I thought of the ps3 but no analogue outs ruled it out for me as i had no intentions of upgrading my processor for a while[/b]

No offense taken mate, your points are all valid, and everyone should take in all the points and make decisions based on what they want and need.

I just wouldnt buy any other blu ray player at the moment as they are over priced and are not garanteed to be upgradeable to profile 1.1 let alone profile 2.0 in the future. At least with the PS3 there is always the possibility of software updates in the future and even if it never eventuates you still have an extremely capable DVD player that upscales via HDMI and also plays the latest games, not to mention will play your blu-ray movies :rolleyes:

I personally think its an excellent solution at this point in time for anyone thinking to get into Blu-Ray.

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Marc,

I don't know if you've settled on the Yamaha yet, because Eastwood Hifi have the Cambridge Azur 640R on special for $1399. He will do mail order. This is what I purchased not long ago, I was in the position of not having the room for 2 separate systems, and this seemed like the best solution for me. The built in amps have plenty of grunt and are one of the better sounding AVR's out there. Also if you want to upgrade later, it can be used as a multichannel preamp, or just a pre for the front two channels. It hasn't got the latest and greatest version of HDMI, but they are all a compromise, and this is it with the Cambridge Audio. Food for thought anyway.

Cheers Tanka.

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