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post #1 of 20 Old 02-19-2017, 07:31 PM - Thread Starter
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As I mentioned in another thread I recently purchased a pair of Technics SB-C700 bookshelf speakers, rated 50-100W at 4 ohms.

An old AVR I was given is only rated down to 6 ohms and isn't cutting it.

I'd like a solution that:

1) Has built in Phono support for my turntable
2) Supports streaming solutions
3) Doesn't take up lots of space (I.e., receiver, amp, Phono amp, streamer, etc)

I started my search with the new NAD C368, but quickly discovered I didn't like the Class D sound. This lead me down an integrated amplifier path, except all of the solutions spike in cost and don't support anything other than optical inputs.

I did stumble across a Technics solution - termed a network audio amplifier http://www.technics.com/us/products/...er-su-g30.html (I wasn't looking at Technics because I purchased Technics speakers; it came up in Google results). Problem is the product retails for $4k.

Unless I'm missing something my options are:

1) Find a digital solution
2) Buy an AVR and add a separate amp rated for 4 ohms
3) Go with an integrated amp, and add on something like a Sonos Connect
4) Go with the $4k option

Thoughts/recommendations?


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post #2 of 20 Old 02-20-2017, 09:55 PM
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Look for an AVR with Network connectivity and a phono preamp built in. Yamaha and Denon both make models with phono support for a lot cheaper than 4k. If you cannot find an AVR that you like with phono look for one without and just add a stand alone phono preamp.
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post #3 of 20 Old 02-22-2017, 01:14 PM
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Here are two options for someone looking for Network Streaming Amp at a bearable price.

Yamaha RN602 Network Receiver, 80w/ch, DAC, Phono, Sub-Out, Network Streaming, Bluetooth, ... - $599 -


https://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/produ...o_network.html

http://usa.yamaha.com/products/audio...02/?mode=model

Pioneer Elite SX-N30 Network Receiver, 80w/ch, DAC, Phono, Sub-Out, Network Streaming, Bluetooth, ... - $600 -

https://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/produ..._receiver.html

http://www.pioneerelectronics.com/PU...ponents/SX-N30

Which is better is not clear, I suspect each in its own way is good.

Now, I think someone suggested an AV Receiver, and they are most definitely feature packed, but you don't get something for nothing, and they will most certainly have Class-D amps. The TWO Stereo Network Receivers above will have standard Class-A/B amps.

In a more compact but not to the same standard, consider the all-in-one Marantz M-CR611 -

Marantz M-CR611, Network Streaming, 60w/ch to 6 ohms, CD Player, DAC, etc.... - $699 -

https://www.crutchfield.com/p_642MCR...z-M-CR611.html

But, I would personally much prefer the Yamaha RN602 or the Pioneer SX-N30 over the Marantz. But for someone looking for a compact all-in-one system, the Marantz usually tops the list because it has higher than average power.

Of course, if you can raise your budget, with a range of up to $4000, you have have a very nice amp, and add Network Streaming easily. If fact, I think you could do it for closer to $2000 -

This would be one potential suggested at a higher budget -

Yamaha AS801 Integrated Amp, 100w/ch, Improved DSD DACs, Phono, Sub-Out, etc... - $899 -

https://www.crutchfield.com/p_022AS8...801-Black.html

http://usa.yamaha.com/products/audio...01/?mode=model

Then combine that with the Bluesound VAULT-2 ($1199), which has 2tb of music storage, and a CD Reader to automatically RIP your CDs.

https://www.crutchfield.com/p_813VAU...t-2-Black.html

http://www.bluesound.com/products/vault-2/?cl

The VAULT-2 would not only act as a Streamer and Ripper, but also as Network Attaches Storage and Server for your music files.

That's about $2100, and far and away better than the Technics in my estimation.

Of course there are other amps to consider, but this illustrates the point nicely.

Steve/bluewizard

Last edited by bluewizard; 02-22-2017 at 01:39 PM.
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post #4 of 20 Old 02-22-2017, 05:05 PM - Thread Starter
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Network Audio Advice

Quote:
Originally Posted by bluewizard View Post
Here are two options for someone looking for Network Streaming Amp at a bearable price.

[I][B]





Steve/bluewizard


Thanks for the suggestions.



I must have misrepresented my budget. I'm not looking to spend $4k, I had merely observed the Technics piece does what I was looking for and cost that much.



I did see the Pioneer Elite SX-N30 after I hit send on my original post. I didn't see anything listed on type of amps, and given the lower prices compared to the competition I assumed it was Class D. That may be an option.



I started leaning towards running an older model Marantz Integrated amp and just hooking up accessories directly to it like a Sonos Connect. It's not as though it will take up too much space. I almost ordered one, but haven't yet. I had listened to a Rotel, but when I A/B with a Martanz AVR I preferred the sound on the Martanz.



Plus, I looked deeper into the newer AVRs, and some are can run 4 ohm speakers, but the integrated amps are rated for that on the spec sheets.

Also, I don't have any experience with Yamaha electronics, so would appreciate any feedback on their quality/sound.

Last edited by Superman07; 02-22-2017 at 07:27 PM.
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post #5 of 20 Old 02-22-2017, 09:28 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Superman07 View Post
Thanks for the suggestions. ...

I started leaning towards running an older model Marantz Integrated amp and just hooking up accessories directly to it like a Sonos Connect. ....
I would not get the SONOS Connect. They were good in their day, but they really haven't updated their models in a while. Though supposedly they are working no new higher performance models. There is nothing wrong with SONOS, there are just more advanced Streamers out there.

Right now the Bluesound NODE-2 is probably the best choice. ($499) for the money.

http://www.bluesound.com/products/node-2/

https://www.crutchfield.com/p_813NOD...e-2-White.html

https://www.crutchfield.com/p_813NOD...e-2-Black.html

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post #6 of 20 Old 02-23-2017, 10:12 AM
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Many of this year's higher end D+M (makers of Denon & Marantz) receivers include Heos, their proprietary alternative to Sonos. It supports both their own brand of wireless speakers and very flexible access to streaming services.

Most AVRs use Class A/B amps. Pioneer is the primary user of Class D amps but only in their higher end Elite models. I mention this because it's the opposite of what's been mentioned here.

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post #7 of 20 Old 02-26-2017, 01:37 PM - Thread Starter
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So now I'm leaning back towards and Integrated amp and running the media off board. I don't have any high res purchases, but to give myself some flexibility I'm leaning towards something that supports DSD via USB.

Price is the same - so any significance between the Marantz PM7005 or the Yamaha A-S801?


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post #8 of 20 Old 02-27-2017, 08:10 AM
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I am using the Pioneer Elite SX-N30 Network Receiver to drive a pair of Elac UB5s in a bedroom system. It is an A/B amp section. It is one of the few systems out there that will stream from an SMB/CIFS source (like a windows file share), not just DLNA. It does work with PCM up to 192khz/24 bit and DSD up to DSD128. The airplay function can automatically power on the system when it detects audio. There is no Tidal support. It also does support a 4ohm load. I do not have it hooked up to a turntable so I cannot tell you how well that works. The app that you can get for free to control it, is adequate. Network operations are a bit slow, but the sound quality is good. This unit can be occasionally purchased from Best Buy for under $400.
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post #9 of 20 Old 04-11-2017, 03:35 PM - Thread Starter
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Bumping this, as I'm still on the hunt. I have noticed something and wonder if anybody could provide some insights.

It appears all integrated amps with DACs in the ~$1,000 range support digital inputs. However, there is then a large jump in pricing to ~$2-2,5000, yet very few at that price point support digital inputs. I have to imagine that is by design, but don't know why.


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post #10 of 20 Old 04-12-2017, 11:27 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Superman07 View Post
Bumping this, as I'm still on the hunt. I have noticed something and wonder if anybody could provide some insights.

It appears all integrated amps with DACs in the ~$1,000 range support digital inputs. However, there is then a large jump in pricing to ~$2-2,5000, yet very few at that price point support digital inputs. I have to imagine that is by design, but don't know why.


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Can you mention some models that you've looked at?

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post #11 of 20 Old 04-12-2017, 12:17 PM
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I've had excellent results with an Onkyo TX-8050 stereo receiver with built-in DACs. It's no longer being made but Onkyo has updated it and it's now a TX-8160 (link is to a refurbished unit) with wireless and ethernet built in as well as retaining the DACs. These are about the only Onkyo products I can recommend any more. I still have the 8050 - I'll probably have it for a very long time even though I'm not using it currently. Sound quality is very good IMO.

You might want to reconsider the AVR route - AVRs these days perform in two channel much better than 10-15 years ago IMO. If you have a sub in the mix the AVR route is almost the only way to get good bass control.

Yamaha CX-A5000 - Acurus A100x3 & Outlaw 7075 amps - Salk Song Towers - Oppo 103
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post #12 of 20 Old 06-21-2017, 03:50 PM - Thread Starter
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I can't believe I started this thread in February and still haven't purchased anything. Ugh...analysis paralysis...

Quote:
Originally Posted by Selden Ball View Post
Can you mention some models that you've looked at?

For instance, when you go up to the triple number Yamaha's or the reference series Marantz units they range $2-7k, but they don't support any digital connections. Straight analog.

Speaking of, I came to the consideration of a few additional points:

1) I don't have any hi res tracks and don't really have plans to hook up a computer via USB, so not sure if paying extra for USB DAC makes sense. I was thinking perhaps Yamaha 501 or 701 over the 801.

2) I was considering running a pair of old Bose outdoor speakers to the back porch off of a B set. I assume most of these units can't run A+B both at 4 ohms. If they can, I suspect issues of some sort? I've never attempted something like that.



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post #13 of 20 Old 06-22-2017, 10:21 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Superman07 View Post
I'd like a solution that:

1) Has built in Phono support for my turntable
2) Supports streaming solutions
3) Doesn't take up lots of space (I.e., receiver, amp, Phono amp, streamer, etc)
The Yamaha R-N602 was suggested earlier and seems to fit your requirements. What's prevented you from giving it a listen? Lack of a feature or features?

Yamaha, Tannoy, & Polk
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post #14 of 20 Old 06-22-2017, 02:30 PM
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I would check out the NAD C368 BLUOS. Integrated amp w/Bluesound in the amp. Plenty of power at 80 wpc around $1299.
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post #15 of 20 Old 06-22-2017, 05:05 PM - Thread Starter
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^^
Yes the RN series was suggested. However, I've read a lot of mixed info from people saying cost comparisons aren't event when considering Integrateds because they use better components, even though simpler design.

^ the NAD was actually one of the first things I tried out. I didn't care for the digital amp, but wasn't familiar with the demo speakers.
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post #16 of 20 Old 06-23-2017, 08:51 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Superman07 View Post
^^
Yes the RN series was suggested. However, I've read a lot of mixed info from people saying cost comparisons aren't event when considering Integrateds because they use better components, even though simpler design.

^ the NAD was actually one of the first things I tried out. I didn't care for the digital amp, but wasn't familiar with the demo speakers.
Yes, as you've found out there can be a lot of mixed info because it boils down to personal preference of the writers. What matters most however is what YOU like, not what someone else likes. The only way you are going to know whats best for you is use your own ears. You do that by listening to them. Make a short list of three that that appeal to you most, audition each at home if you can, then choose the one YOU like best. Never mind the reviews. Let others buy what they like. You're buying this for yourself, not them. Good luck.

Yamaha, Tannoy, & Polk
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post #17 of 20 Old 06-28-2017, 01:07 PM
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I'll just leave this here:

http://www.parasound.com/hint.php
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post #18 of 20 Old 06-28-2017, 07:32 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rokbyter View Post
I'll just leave this here:



http://www.parasound.com/hint.php


LOL

Trust me I've considered it because they sound good with my A23, but the HINT cost more than the speakers!


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post #19 of 20 Old 06-28-2017, 07:39 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Superman07 View Post
LOL

Trust me I've considered it because they sound good with my A23, but the HINT cost more than the speakers!


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Once I got mine, all thoughts of upgrading were gone. It's that good. My speakers help too, but I never wonder if maybe they'd sound better with something else.
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post #20 of 20 Old 07-13-2017, 06:38 AM - Thread Starter
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So I ended up ordering a NAD C 368. It should arrive today.

It meets my specs and has options for upgrades. One thing it doesn't have outbid the box is network streaming which is a bit of a bummer, but I can always build out Sonos further or try the BlueOS module.
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