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rylan
24th April 2005, 19:17
Anyone here keep up with home audio equipment and surround sound receivers much? I'm looking for some comments/suggestions. I'm looking to get a new 7.1 channel receiver. I've been reading various reviews on the web for differant models, but its still hard to tell just how really good the things are made.
I've had a sony one in the past, and was pleased with it. I was originally looking at the STR-DE897S unit, but I've heard they cheaped out a bit on their lower end models, however I'm looking at their ES line (particularly the STR-DA2000ES or 3000ES), and I'm not sure how they've kept up with the component quality on them.
Other than that, I know Denon makes some really good receivers, but I'm not too famaliar with which models to consider or avoid.

In terms of speakers to go with the receiver, I'm looking at a speaker package from Polk, model RM6900. This would be wall mounted with a plasma tv.

Jammrock
24th April 2005, 19:27
Anyone here keep up with home audio equipment and surround sound receivers much? I'm looking for some comments/suggestions. I'm looking to get a new 7.1 channel receiver. I've been reading various reviews on the web for differant models, but its still hard to tell just how really good the things are made.
I've had a sony one in the past, and was pleased with it. I was originally looking at the STR-DE897S unit, but I've heard they cheaped out a bit on their lower end models, however I'm looking at their ES line (particularly the STR-DA2000ES or 3000ES), and I'm not sure how they've kept up with the component quality on them.
Other than that, I know Denon makes some really good receivers, but I'm not too famaliar with which models to consider or avoid.

In terms of speakers to go with the receiver, I'm looking at a speaker package from Polk, model RM6900. This would be wall mounted with a plasma tv.
Moved to HiFi/HTPC forum.

Several of us keep up with this stuff. KvH even sells the stuff. Most people here on the forums, at least us USA types, like B&W speakers with either Denon or Yamaha receivers.

But before we know what stuff to recommend, we need to know how much you want to spend?

Jammrock

rylan
25th April 2005, 05:19
Oops, thought I went to that forum. Well I was close :P

Anyway, the speaker package I'm looking at retails for 999, and the receivers are in the 400-500 range. I'd basically like to stay under 1500 for the receiver and speakers. I know I won't get a high end system for that, but I figure I should be able to get something on the upper side of mid-range with good sound quality and features in the receiver. I'll be using it mainly for movies/tv and some various music. The room area is about 15'W x 13' front to back.

Also, is it better to mount surround speakers up on the corner of the ceiling and point them at an downward angle to the listening area, or have them on a stand.

xortam
25th April 2005, 14:28
... Most people here on the forums, at least us USA types, like B&W speakers with either Denon or Yamaha receivers. ...I'm certainly not most ;) , but then again it's been 30 years since I've been in your price range.

Jammrock
25th April 2005, 18:28
I'm certainly not most ;) , but then again it's been 30 years since I've been in your price range.
You get get a low end B&W speaker setup for about $1000, and it will still blow away anything at the same price. For $400-$500 you can look at the Denon AVR-1905 or the Yamaha RX-V557 or -V657. Denon's are often considered the most "loaded" and Yamaha's a smoother, more musical sound. But you should always trust your own judgement. Bring in 4-5 CD of music that you are very familiar with and compare each reciever/speaker combination within your price range.

In the B&W line look at 600 series 3 line. Those will give you the best bang for your buck and an incredible sound. If those are still a bit too price you can listen to the 300 series.



Just remember to always buy from an authorized dealer or your warranty is void. And if you go to a dedicated A/V shop, and not a national chain, you can ask, "what's the best deal you can give me on this," and they'll almost always discount it from MSRP (and if they don't, go elsewhere, they will).

xortam
25th April 2005, 19:50
Not sure why you quoted me Jammy. I already have a very nice system. For starters, I have KEF speakers all around featuring Reference Series Model 107s in the front. I've also got a 5'x5' rack full of equipment to drive everything. I'm not really in touch currently with the price range that rylan is looking at.

rylan
26th April 2005, 16:29
Thanks guys. B&W is probably out of my price range, but I'll be sure to go have a listen. That Yamaha V557 receiver looks pretty nice too. I'm going to check out the V657, since I'm finding it for under $400. They both have video upconversion, but the V657 has 7.1 channel and a little more power handling. Seems like they're new models, so hard to find much info on them yet.

UtwigMU
26th April 2005, 17:46
Slightly OT:

Considering that midrange computer speakers are in 250$ range and that everyone says proper bookshelf speakers will outperform computer speakers, what can be done on extreme low end?

Say you want to get receiver and a pair of speakers over computer speakers for slightly more - 500$ and used receiver being an option?

What's your take on this (I'm total noob in hi-fi area)?

Jammrock
26th April 2005, 18:46
Not sure why you quoted me Jammy. I already have a very nice system. For starters, I have KEF speakers all around featuring Reference Series Model 107s in the front. I've also got a 5'x5' rack full of equipment to drive everything. I'm not really in touch currently with the price range that rylan is looking at.
I thought you were talking about the other end of the price spectrum ;) Nice system :D

az
26th April 2005, 19:01
Utwig, this really should go in a thread of its own, but yes, a used amp/receiver is certainly an option; maybe some wharfedale speakers to go with it.

But also have a look at the Teufel Concept E Magnum computer system. It's a 5.1 system for 200 EUR and I've only heard very very good things about it.

AZ

xortam
26th April 2005, 19:54
I thought you were talking about the other end of the price spectrum ;) ...Well I did say "it's been 30 years ... ." Hopefully one's ears and budget allows for higher priced systems as they proceed. It's hard to go back once you've tasted the sweet fruit of audio bliss. Too bad many of my components are due for a visit to the repair shop. Most of the repairs are due to old age but also my two year old Halo pre-pro has to go in and it's the center of the system so you can imagine the PITA it is to surgically remove it and do without. :( I guess that’s what you get for buying V1.0 of modern computer based pre-pros.

Jammrock
27th April 2005, 05:05
Well I did say "it's been 30 years ... ." Hopefully one's ears and budget allows for higher priced systems as they proceed. It's hard to go back once you've tasted the sweet fruit of audio bliss. Too bad many of my components are due for a visit to the repair shop. Most of the repairs are due to old age but also my two year old Halo pre-pro has to go in and it's the center of the system so you can imagine the PITA it is to surgically remove it and do without. :( I guess that’s what you get for buying V1.0 of modern computer based pre-pros.
Hey! I don't think well after being sick for four days straight :p ... damn flu bug :(

Speaking of audio. I was at my local AV spot and listened to the new B&W 800-series the other day. They are sweeeeeeeeeet. And damn pricey.

Jammrock

xortam
27th April 2005, 09:43
I don't even try to keep up with all the new equipment. I just buy the best I can afford and that which integrates properly into a system and keep it for 20 years. The digital era is making it difficult to keep with that practice though so I expect I'll be upgrading those pieces much more frequently, maybe every five years give or take.

KvHagedorn
27th April 2005, 11:47
Dunno why I didn't see this at first..

Yamaha RXV457 $300
B&W DM303 mains $300
B&W LCR3 Center $220
B&W CCM616 in-ceiling rears $200
B&W ASW300 subwoofer $350

Total: $1370. Add $100 if you want to use another pair of the DM303 bookshelf speakers in the back instead.

Jammrock is right. Spend this money on anything else and it wont be nearly as good.

RhinoZ
28th April 2005, 16:37
Yeah,
Thanks to these guys I set up a nice system in my home and bought some quality speakers. (Sorry Kvh, couldn't do the B&W's), but I did go with a Canadian speaker company called Paradigm. Anyways the point I wanted to make is that now my wife won't even watch TV without using the stereo for sound. And it really makes a difference when watching and listening to movies at home. Now I'm saving up to get a good subwoofer to go along with the 5.1 setup I have. Everyone just keep saying how much better movies sound with a subwoofer.

KvHagedorn
28th April 2005, 17:16
Paradigms are good. We sell those as well. Hard sell though when you let people listen to the B&Ws too. ;)

Jammrock
28th April 2005, 21:35
Paradigms are good. We sell those as well. Hard sell though when you let people listen to the B&Ws too. ;)
Do you have any of the new 800-series in stock? My local store does, but didn't have any of the diamond dome tweeter models hooked up. Just wondering if the new tweeter design really does a lot of good.

KvHagedorn
28th April 2005, 22:16
Heh.. I wish we could afford that. We have a nice surround display going, though. 804s for mains, HTM4 center, SCM rears, and 825 subwoofer, all in rosenut. Running this is an Anthem AVM30/MCA50 preamp/amp setup. It's pretty nice, but I prefer my (old Nautilus) 802s. There may be some refinements in the s-series, but they sound pretty close to the Nautilus to me.

I got a chance to hear (very briefly) the new Diamond 802s at a store in Dallas recently. I really like the leather trim vs the cloth on the Nautilus series, and they sounded pretty sweet. I didn't get a chance to sit there and critique them, though. Dunno if it's really $4000 better. Maybe. I would rather spend the extra money on a better set of amps, personally, but we don't have the choice anymore. That's why I went ahead and got the Nautilus 802s (I liked the Red Cherry finish, too, which is now no longer available.)

Jammrock
29th April 2005, 06:26
Yes, the cherry is nice :) The guy at the store said it costs $1k per tweeter to replace! Ouch! Couldn't have that kind of speaker lying around with kids :D

How does Anthem compare to Rotel and Classe? I've never heard any Anthem stuff.

KvHagedorn
29th April 2005, 11:56
It's comparable to Rotel pricewise, not sure about performance because we have not done any Rotel systems or auditioned the line. They do not have as many skus to pick from as Rotel, so we might be going that route in the future. Classe is way better, but might be a bit less purist now under the Equity umbrella, believe it or not. Whereas most of the old amps doubled down (double power at half impedence) the new ones do not, but are cosmetically slicker.

Jammrock
29th April 2005, 20:55
Yeah, I thought it was Rotel level, but not sure. The new Classe stuff is incredible. I love the look of the Delta series, and it sound freak'n awesome, too :D

http://www.classeaudio.com/delta/index.htm

The pictures do it no justice. Of course ... $3k for a CD player and $3k for the cheapest amp and uh ... a lot out of my price range. Just love the look. Gorgeous... simply elegant and gorgeous.

Jammrock

KvHagedorn
30th April 2005, 00:05
I'd like to hear the Classe Omegas paired with an Audio Research Reference3 preamp. :)

Jammrock
30th April 2005, 13:08
I'd like to hear the Classe Omegas paired with an Audio Research Reference3 preamp. :)
I heard a demo of the Omega line (SACD, Processor, and the biggest mono blocks in the Omega line) on a set of Wilson Audio MAXX speakers. It was DAMN nice (and would have costs well over $100k for the setup ... to just play CDs). Though that was the year that the Omega's first came out and I know they've been overhauled since, after Classe picked up a couple of Mark Levinson engineers.

The engineer bit is why Classe is quickly surpassing everyone else as the premiere solid-state audio/video equipment manufacture :D

You do need to give the Delta's a listen to though. They are amazing, and still cost less than a moderately priced car for an entire setup :)

Jammrock