Recommendation for economical stereo receiver? - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 24 Old 10-16-2011, 09:06 PM - Thread Starter
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I need to replace my stereo receiver and I'm looking for recommendations on an afforadable replacement. I don't need the best quality, but would like to get the best that I can afford right now.
I assume that my current receiver (Kenwood VR-606) is broken since the sound fades in and out from the two speakers. Since the system is 8 years old, I assume that it either cannot be fixed or is not worth fixing (for what it will cost)
*I am very uninformed about stereo systems (and new technology in general) and this is my first forum posting, so let me know if there's more info I should add.

Criteria
Budget: $300 (New-not refurbished)
Use: TV/DVD and music
Location: Condo living room; approx. 12'x20'x12'
What I'm playing: Radio, HD TV, DVD player, Iphone (considering getting Apple TV), Netflix, Uverse.
Speakers: (2) 8 year old Polk R15 bookshelves ceiling mounted.

What I'm currently considering buying:
1. Onkyo TX SR308. I am having trouble finding it new, but can get a refurbished one from an authorized dealer on ebay for $140. There are other used ones out there. I think new is around $300.

2. Yamaha HTR-6240 $270 on ebay

3. Yamaha RX-V465 $280 on amazon

4. Sony str-dh810 $290 on Amazon

Any comments on these models or recommendations for others?
Thanks!
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post #2 of 24 Old 10-16-2011, 09:39 PM
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Take a good look at the Onkyo 8050. Its a stereo unit with a built-in DAC so it can accept 2 optical and 2 coax inputs - and USB direct input - and has networking built-in as well. Onkyo has them new and refurbished - take your pick. They have a current sale going on with 14.92% off - and when you join ClubOnkyo you'll get another $10 off for joining. A refurbished one would cost you all of about $218 according to my calculations - which may or may not be accurate. Quite a deal if you ask me. The new one with the discounts should be about $100 more than refurbished with a 2 year warranty vs one with refurbished.

Or you can buy a Harman Kardon 3490 off Harman Audio on ebay. They go for $250-350 depending on how heavy the bidding is. They are selling three a day right now so bidding may not be too bad. It has only one optical and one coax but no networking or USB port.

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post #3 of 24 Old 10-18-2011, 08:37 PM - Thread Starter
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Thanks for the great recommendations! I am realizing now that I may have misled you with my information. I am looking for a receiver, but it does not need to be a stereo (vs A/V) receiver. Also, I am using (2) speakers currently, but would like to expand to full surround in the future or maybe add one or two in a different room. Do your two recommendations still apply? I think I'm probably in the market for an A/V receiver.

The Onkyo TX-NR509 (A/V) is on sale for $290 and looks like a good deal for my needs. There is also the Harmon Kardon AVR 1600 for $250. Out of the two, I think the Onkyo offers more.

Sorry for the confusion, any advice is greatly appreciated.
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post #4 of 24 Old 10-18-2011, 10:22 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Knucklehead90 View Post

Take a good look at the Onkyo 8050. Its a stereo unit with a built-in DAC so it can accept 2 optical and 2 coax inputs - and USB direct input - and has networking built-in as well. Onkyo has them new and refurbished - take your pick. They have a current sale going on with 14.92% off - and when you join ClubOnkyo you'll get another $10 off for joining. A refurbished one would cost you all of about $218 according to my calculations - which may or may not be accurate. Quite a deal if you ask me. The new one with the discounts should be about $100 more than refurbished with a 2 year warranty vs one with refurbished.

Or you can buy a Harman Kardon 3490 off Harman Audio on ebay. They go for $250-350 depending on how heavy the bidding is. They are selling three a day right now so bidding may not be too bad. It has only one optical and one coax but no networking or USB port.

Thanks Knucklehead90-Just found my next Toy! The Onkyo is nice!
(I hate this place)
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post #5 of 24 Old 10-19-2011, 12:21 AM
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Check your local area Best Buy stores that are closing out last year's HDMI 1.4 AVRs at well below MSRP.

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post #6 of 24 Old 10-19-2011, 05:12 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jdsmoothie View Post

Check your local area Best Buy stores that are closing out last year's HDMI 1.4 AVRs at well below MSRP.

good idea. I'll try to swing by this weekend. I'd prefer to do all my shopping online though....
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post #7 of 24 Old 10-19-2011, 05:39 PM
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You can get a refurbished 509 from shoponkyo for $219. Comes with a one year warranty. Since you are now looking for an AVR take a look at the Denon line. Denon has Audyssey MultEQ in their lower end line like the 1612/1712 - Onkyo has the 2EQ version until you get into the 7xx series. The 2EQ does not equalize the sub - IMO thats a bad omission on their part.

Even the cheap assed Denon 589 I've been using for a day-to-day setup has MultEQ.

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post #8 of 24 Old 10-20-2011, 05:35 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dsamma1 View Post

good idea. I'll try to swing by this weekend. I'd prefer to do all my shopping online though....

When Best Buy cleared out the HDMI 1.3 Denon 4310CI (MSRP $2000) for only $550 last fall ... and when another guy just recently got last year's HDMI 1.4 Denon 591 (MSRP $349) for only $100, I doubt it bothered them about not buying on-line.

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post #9 of 24 Old 10-20-2011, 09:18 AM
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Never know about sales, but "Black Friday" is a month away and there's usually great deals somewhere if you get in early.
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post #10 of 24 Old 10-20-2011, 09:34 AM
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You can get the Sony dh810 on the Walmart website for only $198.
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post #11 of 24 Old 10-20-2011, 10:58 AM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Knucklehead90 View Post

You can get a refurbished 509 from shoponkyo for $219. Comes with a one year warranty. Since you are now looking for an AVR take a look at the Denon line. Denon has Audyssey MultEQ in their lower end line like the 1612/1712 - Onkyo has the 2EQ version until you get into the 7xx series. The 2EQ does not equalize the sub - IMO thats a bad omission on their part.

Even the cheap assed Denon 589 I've been using for a day-to-day setup has MultEQ.

Thanks for the advice Knucklehead
I looked at the Denon 1612 and its very affordable with several advantages over the Okyo. There are several features lacking that I'm not sure how important they are:
1. no multi zone -not a big deal since I may never use it
2. no ethernet- I would think this is important in order to update firmware, stream music, etc. Isn't it pretty important to have an ethernet connection these days (maybe I'm wrong)?
3. no component video monitor outputs- not sure how this would affect me
4. no audio input- not sure how this would affect me

-would these last missing features affect me since my DVD player is old and would require component cabling?
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post #12 of 24 Old 10-20-2011, 11:10 AM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by turbobuick86 View Post

Never know about sales, but "Black Friday" is a month away and there's usually great deals somewhere if you get in early.

Even though I'm not a fan of the black friday shopping rush, it's not really an option for me since I'll be wrapped up with family events out of town.

Quote:
Originally Posted by jdsmoothie View Post

When Best Buy cleared out the HDMI 1.3 Denon 4310CI (MSRP $2000) for only $550 last fall ... and when another guy just recently got last year's HDMI 1.4 Denon 591 (MSRP $349) for only $100, I doubt it bothered them about not buying on-line.

I agree that a little on site shopping can pay off! I hope to go in and get a deal as well. Hopefully I can find the time this weekend. I'm growing rather impatient and need some music in my living room....
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post #13 of 24 Old 10-20-2011, 01:56 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dsamma1 View Post

Thanks for the advice Knucklehead
I looked at the Denon 1612 and its very affordable with several advantages over the Okyo. There are several features lacking that I'm not sure how important they are:
1. no multi zone -not a big deal since I may never use it
2. no ethernet- I would think this is important in order to update firmware, stream music, etc. Isn't it pretty important to have an ethernet connection these days (maybe I'm wrong)?
3. no component video monitor outputs- not sure how this would affect me
4. no audio input- not sure how this would affect me

-would these last missing features affect me since my DVD player is old and would require component cabling?

1. The Denon 1712 has zone ll capabilities - the 1912 has networking as well as zone ll.

2. See #1

3. You'd have to step up to the 1912 to get component converted to HDMI. The 1712 has component in and component out. That means more cables. Component video is capable of up to 1080i resolution. You could buy a new blu-ray player with some of the $ by getting the 1612. I've never questioned over-buying - moving up to the next model. I've often questioned the wisdom of not doing so.

4. ??? Not sure what you are saying. The 1612 has audio over HDMI as well as optical/coax inputs. It is very limited for audio inputs. No L/R analog inputs.

If your DVD player has audio over HDMI that would be great. Does it have optical/coax outputs?

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post #14 of 24 Old 10-20-2011, 08:02 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Knucklehead90 View Post

1. The Denon 1712 has zone ll capabilities - the 1912 has networking as well as zone ll.

2. See #1

3. You'd have to step up to the 1912 to get component converted to HDMI. The 1712 has component in and component out. That means more cables. Component video is capable of up to 1080i resolution. You could buy a new blu-ray player with some of the $ by getting the 1612. I've never questioned over-buying - moving up to the next model. I've often questioned the wisdom of not doing so.

4. ??? Not sure what you are saying. The 1612 has audio over HDMI as well as optical/coax inputs. It is very limited for audio inputs. No L/R analog inputs.

If your DVD player has audio over HDMI that would be great. Does it have optical/coax outputs?

The 1712 and 1912 are good recommendations but exceed my $300 budget by $100+

My current DVD player (9 year old Toshiba SD 1800) has component video and S video connections but no optical/coax. Since the 1612 has no component video input or output, I couldn't hook up that way. The 1612 does have S video input, but no output. Since the 1612 has no S video conversion and no output, I wouldn't be able to run the DVD player. Correct me if I'm wrong (this is all new to me).
The Onkyo does have component video inputs and outputs so I can connect the DVD player to the receiver and then TV. For now, I'd rather stick with my current DVD (which is fine for now), work within my budget, and then put then buy the right dvd player next.

The network connectivity also seems like a big plus for the Onkyo.
Maybe I'm just blinded by the Onkyo. Still looking though. Thanks for everyone's input as I take a/v 101.
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post #15 of 24 Old 10-20-2011, 08:35 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sonyad View Post

You can get the Sony dh810 on the Walmart website for only $198.

Unfortunately no walmart within 50 miles of me (Chicago) has this receiver. That would be a sweet deal.
I'm looking at this model closer now and seeing what I like and don't like.

Pro's
1. Wireless 2nd Zone Audio sounds like a great feature (assuming the quality is decent). I would end up surface mounting cables otherwise since I'm not going to have them run in-wall.
2. Upconvert/Upscales- Onkyo doesn't have this feature and I can eliminate the component video cable to my TV from my 9 year old DVD player (yes I know I need to upgrade).
3. Multiroom speakers set up- also found in Onkyo

Con's
1. No built-in network connectivity (which the Onkyo does have).
2. No front USB connection (which the Onkyo does have).
Both these features seem pretty important to have. I guess if I get something like Apple TV (which I'm strongly considering), that would give me everthing I need???
3. Some complaints about connectivity and having to do work-arounds.

Still leaning towards the Onkyo. Still researching and learning...
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post #16 of 24 Old 10-20-2011, 08:50 PM
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I've liked the specs of the Yamah RX-V467 ($225-ish at Amazon) or RX-471 (a little more) but have no personal experience with them. I don't see a ton of yamah love on the forum (I've even heard these lower model Yamis are really Toshiba with a Yami badge) but it might be worth checking out. Just buy from a source with a good return policy.
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post #17 of 24 Old 10-20-2011, 10:56 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dsamma1 View Post

The network connectivity also seems like a big plus for the Onkyo.
Maybe I'm just blinded by the Onkyo. Still looking though.

At this lower AVR level, determine which is more important to make your choice easier ... features (Onkyo, Yamaha) .... better audio quality (Denon).

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post #18 of 24 Old 10-21-2011, 03:41 AM
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Get the Yamaha rx-a800 from newegg for $299. A much better receiver than any mentioned above.

Onkyo's have severe reliability issues. I wouldn't touch a refurb Onkyo. Nor would I touch a new (or as I like to call them, pre-refurb) Onkyo.

EDIT: I just checked newegg and the rx-a800 are sold out. Sorry, you could have gotten a tremendous deal. You may want to look at their other Yamaha receivers. They're priced for clearance.
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post #19 of 24 Old 10-21-2011, 07:38 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dsamma1 View Post

My current DVD player (9 year old Toshiba SD 1800) has component video and S video connections but no optical/coax.

Excuse me for butting in, but I found it strange that a DVD player didnt have coax or optical audio so I looked up the manual for SD 1800. It shows coax digital out. Of course yours may be different than the picture.

You either run component video to your TV and coax audio to receiver or run pass thru component video on your receiver if applicable. It would then be necessary to switch inputs on your tv and on your receiver.
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post #20 of 24 Old 10-21-2011, 07:55 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dsamma1 View Post

Unfortunately no walmart within 50 miles of me (Chicago) has this receiver. That would be a sweet deal.
I'm looking at this model closer now and seeing what I like and don't like.

It might not be in stock in your local store, but you can do free shipping to store for Walmart items.
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post #21 of 24 Old 10-21-2011, 08:01 AM
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Newegg also has the SONY STRDN2010 on sale for $230 until 10/24.
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post #22 of 24 Old 10-21-2011, 05:45 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by turbobuick86 View Post

Excuse me for butting in, but I found it strange that a DVD player didnt have coax or optical audio so I looked up the manual for SD 1800. It shows coax digital out. Of course yours may be different than the picture.

You either run component video to your TV and coax audio to receiver or run pass thru component video on your receiver if applicable. It would then be necessary to switch inputs on your tv and on your receiver.

The pictures offered the clarification I needed. It does have bitstream. I didn't realize that was coaxial. Thanks.
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post #23 of 24 Old 10-22-2011, 01:08 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by KidHorn View Post

Get the Yamaha rx-a800 from newegg for $299. A much better receiver than any mentioned above.

Onkyo's have severe reliability issues. I wouldn't touch a refurb Onkyo. Nor would I touch a new (or as I like to call them, pre-refurb) Onkyo.

EDIT: I just checked newegg and the rx-a800 are sold out. Sorry, you could have gotten a tremendous deal. You may want to look at their other Yamaha receivers. They're priced for clearance.

That would have been a great deal!
I just looked at Newegg and found Yamaha RX-V667 7.2-Channel Home Theater Receiver for $260. I'm just researching it now, but it looks like a great system so far. Any feedback would be appreciated, but the reviews look good so far....
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post #24 of 24 Old 10-24-2011, 10:46 AM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jdsmoothie View Post

At this lower AVR level, determine which is more important to make your choice easier ... features (Onkyo, Yamaha) .... better audio quality (Denon).

Good question and one that has made me make a "final" decision. I looked at a lot of different models and have ruled out refurbished as an option. I'm picking up the Denon 1612 from Best Buy fro $300 today.

Thanks!
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