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blybo

Looking for a "musical" AVR with enphasis on 2ch playback. Suggestions?

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I'm spending my parents money (my inheritance) and building them a nice AV system for their downsized property. They don't watch a lot of blockbuster or action movies so sound quality will be a preference to massive subs etc. 2nd hand is okay. No networking required, they don't own a computer or have internet, just a 3G iPad2 and iPhones.

 

My mum is retired and loves to have quality tunes running in the back ground most of the day but they have the small 2ch system upstairs in a retreat type area, so want the main system to have a high priority towards 2ch playback downstairs without the need for integrated amps with HT bypass.

 

Am I right to think something in the Marantz range or perhaps CA? Budget up to $1500

 

Speakers will more than likely be Whatmough P15se L&R, P2 centre, Synergy sub and in ceiling rears. Room is a large open plan multi function room with family area, then dining then kitchen, probably 4m x 10-12m and glass down much of one wall.

Edited by blybo

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price range?

 

it's a shame, because if they truly value sound quality I don't think you can escape the need for a ht bypass setup using a dedicated 2 channel amp.

 

In actual fact; if you're really hunting for quality 'watts' - I'd probably just recommend a 2 channel amp anyway - forgoe the rear channels (or buy a 2 channel amp that lets you have a second zone and set the ceilings as zone 2), and a sub can still be added....

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nad, cambridge, rotel, arcam, harman kardon some that come to mind. keep carefull of the marantz, it depends on the model you buy($$$) as to how much optimised it is for 2ch/analog - some arent too much further than the denon basis they start from. the marantz units though will come with apple air which might be handy if using ipad/iphones as source.

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Nad's a good suggestion - as is Arcam. But arcam's AVR's are up there in terms of price; which is why i asked for budget. :)

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Hi juice the new arcam 360 is shy under $2 k but say in te Tivoli 20% sale now gone would have come close to budget. Definitely should find arcams 2 nad hand too.

But yeah even new plenty other options as well .

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Nothing wrong with Yamaha in my view, may not be a "on trend" choice but personal experience is that I am getting perfectly acceptable sound out of a 3900 ( no longer current = to a 3030 in current line)

 

I have used 2CH amps with HT bypass for ages last one was Al's MF A1 - I am currently is one of those "change" modes and going a different direction - making do with "just an AVR" while I get the new system sorted.

 

And surprise surprise, it sounds quite good ! IMO easly good enough for the use you envisage blybo

 

Sometimes I think we all get to caught up in the dogma 

 

2CH amps with HT are great for ultimate sound, that last1% but a well tuned quality AVR can give very high levels of musical enjoyment - just keep the loudspeakers easy to drive

Edited by Chill3

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Thanks guys. I like the sound of the Arcam 360. If family sounds are anything to go by we'll give Rotel and CA a miss, too bright for this room, it's currently got slap echo like you wouldn't believe. I'm suggesting to my mum she look into some heavy drapes.

 

$1500 is what I'd like to keep it under but I've just remembered they have a 2 ch power amp tucked away so that will be trialled for the 2 ch side of things.

 

Nothing wrong with Yamaha in my view, may not be a "on trend" choice but personal experience is that I am getting perfectly acceptable sound out of a 3900 ( no longer current = to a 3030 in current line)

 

I have used 2CH amps with HT bypass for ages last one was Al's MF A1 - I am currently is one of those "change" modes and going a different direction - making do with "just an AVR" while I get the new system sorted.

 

And surprise surprise, it sounds quite good ! IMO easly good enough for the use you envisage blybo

 

Sometimes I think we all get to caught up in the dogma 

 

2CH amps with HT are great for ultimate sound, that last1% but a well tuned quality AVR can give very high levels of musical enjoyment - just keep the loudspeakers easy to drive

 

I tend to agree but I also think this roon needs heaps of room correction and I believe ARC or Audessey XT (sp) are superior to the Yamaha correction. Whatmough speakers are pretty easy to drive across the board too.

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Marantz certainly can have a warmer tone in AVRs.

A second hand AVR can be set up to power stereo speakers that can be biamped  with surprisingly good results. 

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Never heard a marantz avr I liked.

Cambridge audio or denon are decent even with their cheap options.

Pioneer avr's are decent and have excellent connectivity.

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Never heard a marantz avr I liked.

Cambridge audio or denon are decent even with their cheap options.

Pioneer avr's are decent and have excellent connectivity.

 

whilst marantz stuff have warmth have also come across a hard edge and forwardness at times which might not be to everyones taste. again just a case of mixing and matching, will work for some but might not for others 

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I can recommend Anthem MRX range. Certainly tick the quality watts box as shown by stating 2ch and 5ch driven at 20-20Khz not just 1khz test tone

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I would also look at the new Emotiva Fusion 8100 AVR. Should be well under 1K delivered.

Nice and compact with excellent 2 CH performance. (I have the Sherbourn equivilent for my Dad) Simple remote. Packs a lot of punch out of the internal amps. Supports 4 ohm speaker.

http://shop.emotiva.com/collections/av-receivers/products/fusion-8100

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Thanks for all the replies people. Parents got a great deal on a run out Arcam AVR 360. They demo'ed the speakers they are going for with the 380 so confident they are on the right track.

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