Best Pre-Pro Option? Integra 80.3, Marantz 7005, Sherwood R-972, Aventage 3010, Or? - AVS Forum
Forum Jump: 
Reply
 
Thread Tools
post #1 of 38 Old 05-26-2012, 11:15 PM - Thread Starter
Advanced Member
 
John Clark's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2001
Location: Clarkston, Michigan
Posts: 914
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 66 Post(s)
Liked: 16
As the title says, I'm attempting to find my best quality option, and value for a new preamp processor, even if that might be a receiver. This will be replacing an Onkyo Pro SC-886. Due to cutbacks, I'm being forced into a somewhat early retirement situation and am trying to identify the best strategy here, with a unit that will last quite a while and deliver excellent performance for hom theater. The unit will not be used for music.

I've read great reviews in publications, and here, about all of the above. People seem to be willing to overlook some difficulties with the 972 because of the quality of its Trinnov soundfield. And its available for chump change, which is always nice. Every review I've ever read of the Marantz made it seem like a no-brainer, but the Integra seems to have every bell and whistle ever created, which would make it seem like the best option for longevity.

I've also read some recent reviews of the Yamaha Aventage RX-A3010 that make a strong case for it.

I would appreciate your thoughts, experiences and pers[ectives on the best overall choice. Thanks.
John Clark is offline  
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
post #2 of 38 Old 05-27-2012, 12:04 AM
AVS Special Member
 
Venomous's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2004
Location: Huntington Beach/San Diego CA
Posts: 1,198
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Liked: 16
Denon 4311 and call it done. Aventages biggest flaw is ypao. The 4311 is audyssey pro ready In case XT32 leaves results less desirable.
Venomous is offline  
post #3 of 38 Old 05-27-2012, 12:09 AM
Member
 
Louie_18's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2011
Location: Laguna, Philippines
Posts: 162
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 9 Post(s)
Liked: 10
+1 on the Denon 4311 or Onkyo PR-SC5509
Louie_18 is offline  
post #4 of 38 Old 05-27-2012, 12:53 AM
AVS Addicted Member
 
Bill Mac's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2003
Posts: 11,591
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 171 Post(s)
Liked: 498
I would also recommend the 4311, I just bought one to replace my 886. Nothing wrong with the 886 but I wanted XT32. I'm very happy with the 4311 for both music and HT. I'd skip the R-972 as I couldn't deal with the issues it has. The AV7005 does not have XT32 so I do not think it would be a worth while upgrade over the 886. The 80.3 is an excellent choice but a bit more expensive than the current sale prices on the 4311.

Bill

My SACD collection, watch it grow and my wallet shrink ;-).

 

Denon 4311 (in preamp mode), Parasound 2100, Boston Acoustics A7200 amp, Oppo BDP-103, Consonance CD120, Panasonic TC-P60GT50 plasma, Panamax 5100EX, Salk Song Towers, Song Center, ADS 300C (surrounds) and two Rythmik F12SEs.
Bill Mac is offline  
post #5 of 38 Old 05-27-2012, 12:48 PM - Thread Starter
Advanced Member
 
John Clark's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2001
Location: Clarkston, Michigan
Posts: 914
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 66 Post(s)
Liked: 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by Louie_18 View Post

+1 on the Denon 4311 or Onkyo PR-SC5509

Is the 5509 available yet?


John
John Clark is offline  
post #6 of 38 Old 05-27-2012, 12:59 PM - Thread Starter
Advanced Member
 
John Clark's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2001
Location: Clarkston, Michigan
Posts: 914
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 66 Post(s)
Liked: 16
Could someone please PM me with the "current sale prices" for the 4311 at an authorized Denon dealer. I'm only finding refurbs at a decent price.



John
John Clark is offline  
post #7 of 38 Old 05-27-2012, 01:00 PM - Thread Starter
Advanced Member
 
John Clark's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2001
Location: Clarkston, Michigan
Posts: 914
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 66 Post(s)
Liked: 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bill Mac View Post

I would also recommend the 4311, I just bought one to replace my 886. Nothing wrong with the 886 but I wanted XT32. I'm very happy with the 4311 for both music and HT. I'd skip the R-972 as I couldn't deal with the issues it has. The AV7005 does not have XT32 so I do not think it would be a worth while upgrade over the 886. The 80.3 is an excellent choice but a bit more expensive than the current sale prices on the 4311.

Bill


Bill,


Is XT32 the only real benefit of moving from an 886 to the 4311? How do the sonics for home theater compare?


John
John Clark is offline  
post #8 of 38 Old 05-27-2012, 04:11 PM
AVS Addicted Member
 
Bill Mac's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2003
Posts: 11,591
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 171 Post(s)
Liked: 498
Quote:
Originally Posted by John Clark View Post

Could someone please PM me with the "current sale prices" for the 4311 at an authorized Denon dealer. I'm only finding refurbs at a decent price.

John,

Electronics Expo had the 4311 at a very good price. I believe they are out of stock but you could call them and ask if they will be getting more in. The local Best Buy (Magnolia) price matched the EE price which worked out real well.

Quote:
Originally Posted by John Clark View Post

Is XT32 the only real benefit of moving from an 886 to the 4311? How do the sonics for home theater compare?

I would say the biggest improvement would be XT32. I would say the sonic differences between the two would be hard to compare. Without being able to A-B them directly I can't honestly say one sounds better than the other. But I can say that in my room XT32 is a very nice improvement for HT and even more so for music (MCH/2 CH).

Bill

My SACD collection, watch it grow and my wallet shrink ;-).

 

Denon 4311 (in preamp mode), Parasound 2100, Boston Acoustics A7200 amp, Oppo BDP-103, Consonance CD120, Panasonic TC-P60GT50 plasma, Panamax 5100EX, Salk Song Towers, Song Center, ADS 300C (surrounds) and two Rythmik F12SEs.
Bill Mac is offline  
post #9 of 38 Old 05-27-2012, 07:48 PM
Senior Member
 
moparfan's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2007
Posts: 361
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Liked: 13
You should try the 972. It may give you what you need at half the price of the 4311.
moparfan is offline  
post #10 of 38 Old 05-27-2012, 09:40 PM
Member
 
DrRx's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2008
Location: Burlington, Ontario, CANADA
Posts: 114
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Liked: 13
I was in exactly the same boat as you are last January and my 1st choice then was the Onkyo PR-SC5509 (ie Integra 80.3 clone). I waited for 3 months for it to arrive state-side but that never happened (and still hasn't). So in March I went to plan "B" and picked up an Onkyo TX-NR5009. This unit is basically a 5509 plus an excellent 7-channel amp minus balanced outputs. And best of all, it can be found for $400-500 LESS than the 5509 . So I ended up with a state-of-the-art pre-pro with the added versatility of using it as a receiver down the road or to get audio into a 2nd zone in the house. Couldn't be happier with the audio and video performance and versatility. And once you go XT32 you can't go back!
DrRx is offline  
post #11 of 38 Old 05-27-2012, 11:09 PM - Thread Starter
Advanced Member
 
John Clark's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2001
Location: Clarkston, Michigan
Posts: 914
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 66 Post(s)
Liked: 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by DrRx View Post

I was in exactly the same boat as you are last January and my 1st choice then was the Onkyo PR-SC5509 (ie Integra 80.3 clone). I waited for 3 months for it to arrive state-side but that never happened (and still hasn't). So in March I went to plan "B" and picked up an Onkyo TX-NR5009. This unit is basically a 5509 plus an excellent 7-channel amp minus balanced outputs. And best of all, it can be found for $400-500 LESS than the 5509 . So I ended up with a state-of-the-art pre-pro with the added versatility of using it as a receiver down the road or to get audio into a 2nd zone in the house. Couldn't be happier with the audio and video performance and versatility. And once you go XT32 you can't go back!

I had not realized the TX-NR5509 was such a viable option. Granted, the lack of balanced outputs would cost me some money to overcome.


John
John Clark is offline  
post #12 of 38 Old 05-27-2012, 11:11 PM - Thread Starter
Advanced Member
 
John Clark's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2001
Location: Clarkston, Michigan
Posts: 914
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 66 Post(s)
Liked: 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by moparfan View Post

You should try the 972. It may give you what you need at half the price of the 4311.



Moparfan,

I've heard great things about the soundfield the Trinnov processor creates. Do you own one, and have the truly resolved the HDMI, and other, bugs, as reported?


John
John Clark is offline  
post #13 of 38 Old 05-28-2012, 05:18 AM
AVS Addicted Member
 
Bill Mac's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2003
Posts: 11,591
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 171 Post(s)
Liked: 498
Quote:
Originally Posted by John Clark View Post

I've heard great things about the soundfield the Trinnov processor creates. Do you own one, and have the truly resolved the HDMI, and other, bugs, as reported?
John

I was ready to order the R-972 but asked a few owners if they were still experiencing the audio delay when going from digtal to analog signals specifically with cable/SAT. They all said the delay was still present even when using the optical input which was the deal breaker for me. The blowout price of the R-972 is excellent especially the fact that Trinnov is included. For some the audio delay is not an issue but it is for me. It was present in the Onkyo 905 when it first came out and it was returned quickly.

Bill

My SACD collection, watch it grow and my wallet shrink ;-).

 

Denon 4311 (in preamp mode), Parasound 2100, Boston Acoustics A7200 amp, Oppo BDP-103, Consonance CD120, Panasonic TC-P60GT50 plasma, Panamax 5100EX, Salk Song Towers, Song Center, ADS 300C (surrounds) and two Rythmik F12SEs.
Bill Mac is offline  
post #14 of 38 Old 05-28-2012, 06:29 AM
Senior Member
 
moparfan's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2007
Posts: 361
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Liked: 13
My needs (system) are relatively simple. I watch movies/bu-ray or stream movies and it works fine doing this. Likewise, a while back when people complained about how long blu-ray players took to load movies, that was also a non-issue for my system because of how I use my system.

The sound is better than what I get from a Pioneer sc-27 or a Onkyo SC-886. The biggest difference for me is the enhanced intelligibility of dialog.

Quote:
Originally Posted by John Clark View Post

Moparfan,

I've heard great things about the soundfield the Trinnov processor creates. Do you own one, and have the truly resolved the HDMI, and other, bugs, as reported?


John

moparfan is offline  
post #15 of 38 Old 05-28-2012, 09:06 AM
Member
 
Chris Isble's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2004
Location: Lyndhurst, OH
Posts: 140
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 2 Post(s)
Liked: 10
I just went through this myself, and I chose the Anthem MRX-300. The first time I ran ARC I discovered that room correction makes a huge difference. Having the graphical feedback on the PC to know to reposition my subwoofer and run ARC again made it that much better.

An Audyssey Pro kit plus a license is 3/4 the cost of the MRX-300. I don't think there is any better value for the money.

Descartes' corollary: I don't think very much, therefore I may not be.

Chris Isble is offline  
post #16 of 38 Old 05-28-2012, 07:33 PM
AVS Special Member
 
jayray's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2002
Location: Mississauga, Canada
Posts: 4,708
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1 Post(s)
Liked: 25
Quote:
Originally Posted by Chris Isble View Post

I just went through this myself, and I chose the Anthem MRX-300. The first time I ran ARC I discovered that room correction makes a huge difference. Having the graphical feedback on the PC to know to reposition my subwoofer and run ARC again made it that much better.

An Audyssey Pro kit plus a license is 3/4 the cost of the MRX-300. I don't think there is any better value for the money.

Of course you meant you discovered that a really good room correction makes a huge difference Most of the reviews agree with you on your last point as well.
John

Jayray
Read the FAQs
jayray is offline  
post #17 of 38 Old 05-28-2012, 07:38 PM
Senior Member
 
moparfan's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2007
Posts: 361
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Liked: 13
Or that he discovered that most people tend to justify their own choices.

Quote:
Originally Posted by jayray View Post

Of course you meant you discovered that a really good room correction makes a huge difference Most of the reviews agree with you on your last point as well.
John

moparfan is offline  
post #18 of 38 Old 05-28-2012, 07:54 PM
AVS Special Member
 
jayray's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2002
Location: Mississauga, Canada
Posts: 4,708
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1 Post(s)
Liked: 25
Quote:
Originally Posted by moparfan View Post

Or that he discovered that most people tend to justify their own choices.

You assume we looked at one brand and then bought it only to suggest it because we bought it. I've owned Denons and Yamaha and my brothers have Denons and my best friend also has a Denon. Two are getting MRX 500s and the other wishes he'd waited for the MRXs to come out. Their quality speaks for themselves. Plenty of people make recommendations are you suggesting we shouldn't? Sometimes it seems on these threads it is only Denons that are recommended. I've tried the competition, have you?

Jayray
Read the FAQs
jayray is offline  
post #19 of 38 Old 05-28-2012, 08:53 PM
Member
 
Chris Isble's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2004
Location: Lyndhurst, OH
Posts: 140
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 2 Post(s)
Liked: 10
Quote:
Originally Posted by moparfan View Post

Or that he discovered that most people tend to justify their own choices.

A distinction without a difference.

My choice made me happy. That makes it the right choice for me.

When asked for an opinion, all I can say is that I am satisfied with my purchase, and why.

Descartes' corollary: I don't think very much, therefore I may not be.

Chris Isble is offline  
post #20 of 38 Old 05-28-2012, 08:56 PM
AVS Special Member
 
Venomous's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2004
Location: Huntington Beach/San Diego CA
Posts: 1,198
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Liked: 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by jayray View Post

You assume we looked at one brand and then bought it only to suggest it because we bought it. I've owned Denons and Yamaha and my brothers have Denons and my best friend also has a Denon. Two are getting MRX 500s and the other wishes he'd waited for the MRXs to come out. Their quality speaks for themselves. Plenty of people make recommendations are you suggesting we shouldn't? Sometimes it seems on these threads it is only Denons that are recommended. I've tried the competition, have you?

Yup and onkyos flat out suck, prematurely breakdown and onkyo is a warranty nightmare..you would think I learned my lesson after owning three of them...

This time around I jumped the gun simply based on pricing. I got a really good deal on a 3010 because a customer ordered a silver one, but what came from Yamaha was black. So I pulled the trigger saving $600 only to wish I had waited and gone with the 4311.

For me, I like the mrx line except its barebone options. I wanted something that was modern,networkable and had streaming abilities. I also wanted seamless control using an iPad. If yamahas came with audyssey, they would be a hard receiver not to constantly recommend. However, the 4311 is damn near perfect which is why it's often recommended.

If you can find something that offers what the 4311 offers at its current available kickass pricing, I'm all ears. I doubt you will... And an onkyo doesn't exactly speak quality. It's time they also update the look of their receivers too.
Venomous is offline  
post #21 of 38 Old 05-28-2012, 09:36 PM
AVS Special Member
 
jayray's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2002
Location: Mississauga, Canada
Posts: 4,708
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1 Post(s)
Liked: 25
Quote:
Originally Posted by Venomous View Post


Yup and onkyos flat out suck, prematurely breakdown and onkyo is a warranty nightmare..you would think I learned my lesson after owning three of them...

This time around I jumped the gun simply based on pricing. I got a really good deal on a 3010 because a customer ordered a silver one, but what came from Yamaha was black. So I pulled the trigger saving $600 only to wish I had waited and gone with the 4311.

For me, I like the mrx line except its barebone options. I wanted something that was modern,networkable and had streaming abilities. I also wanted seamless control using an iPad. If yamahas came with audyssey, they would be a hard receiver not to constantly recommend. However, the 4311 is damn near perfect which is why it's often recommended.

If you can find something that offers what the 4311 offers at its current available kickass pricing, I'm all ears. I doubt you will... And an onkyo doesn't exactly speak quality. It's time they also update the look of their receivers too.

I firmly believe after doing direct comparisons between a Denon 4310 (Audyssey) and an MRX 500 (ARC) that the sound quality was superior with ARC. Therefore if sound quality is your primary consideration that's my recommendation. If as you said you wanted more features, then it's certainly not the one for you. Their priority with these receivers was sound quality and like their pre/pros, they did exactly that. If people don't want to check out reviews then do a comparison but they shouldn't dismiss my observations because I have done one.
John

Jayray
Read the FAQs
jayray is offline  
post #22 of 38 Old 05-28-2012, 09:39 PM
Newbie
 
Carmen270's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2012
Posts: 5
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Liked: 10
Could someone please PM me with the "current sale prices" for the 4311 at an authorized Denon dealer. I'm only finding refurbs at a decent price.
Carmen270 is offline  
post #23 of 38 Old 05-29-2012, 12:27 AM
AVS Special Member
 
Venomous's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2004
Location: Huntington Beach/San Diego CA
Posts: 1,198
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Liked: 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by jayray View Post

I firmly believe after doing direct comparisons between a Denon 4310 (Audyssey) and an MRX 500 (ARC) that the sound quality was superior with ARC. Therefore if sound quality is your primary consideration that's my recommendation. If as you said you wanted more features, then it's certainly not the one for you. Their priority with these receivers was sound quality and like their pre/pros, they did exactly that. If people don't want to check out reviews then do a comparison but they shouldn't dismiss my observations because I have done one.
John

Judging by the included microphone that comes withmth mrx 700, I've heard wonderful things abut arc's performance. What's their release schedule for updating their receiver line?
Venomous is offline  
post #24 of 38 Old 05-29-2012, 01:27 AM
AVS Special Member
 
buggs1a's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2003
Location: Tukwila, WA
Posts: 1,156
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 13 Post(s)
Liked: 15
Quote:
Originally Posted by Venomous View Post

Denon 4311 and call it done. Aventages biggest flaw is ypao. The 4311 is audyssey pro ready In case XT32 leaves results less desirable.

I have the Yamaha rxa3000 and the ypao did better then audyssey on the integra dtr40.3.
buggs1a is offline  
post #25 of 38 Old 05-29-2012, 07:12 AM
AVS Addicted Member
 
Bill Mac's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2003
Posts: 11,591
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 171 Post(s)
Liked: 498
Quote:
Originally Posted by jayray View Post

I firmly believe after doing direct comparisons between a Denon 4310 (Audyssey) and an MRX 500 (ARC) that the sound quality was superior with ARC. Therefore if sound quality is your primary consideration that's my recommendation. If as you said you wanted more features, then it's certainly not the one for you. Their priority with these receivers was sound quality and like their pre/pros, they did exactly that. If people don't want to check out reviews then do a comparison but they shouldn't dismiss my observations because I have done one.
John

I think the 4311 with XT32 would be a closer comparison to ARC over the 4310 with XT. Although for the money the MRX 300 and 500 are great AVRs with ARC being an excellent feature. I had a AVM 30 for awhile and I thought it was an excellent prepro.

Bill

My SACD collection, watch it grow and my wallet shrink ;-).

 

Denon 4311 (in preamp mode), Parasound 2100, Boston Acoustics A7200 amp, Oppo BDP-103, Consonance CD120, Panasonic TC-P60GT50 plasma, Panamax 5100EX, Salk Song Towers, Song Center, ADS 300C (surrounds) and two Rythmik F12SEs.
Bill Mac is offline  
post #26 of 38 Old 05-29-2012, 07:30 AM
AVS Special Member
 
jayray's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2002
Location: Mississauga, Canada
Posts: 4,708
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1 Post(s)
Liked: 25
Quote:
Originally Posted by Venomous View Post


Judging by the included microphone that comes withmth mrx 700, I've heard wonderful things abut arc's performance. What's their release schedule for updating their receiver line?

I've not heard anything about updates. The feature list may not change much but then who knows.
John

Jayray
Read the FAQs
jayray is offline  
post #27 of 38 Old 05-29-2012, 07:32 AM
AVS Special Member
 
jayray's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2002
Location: Mississauga, Canada
Posts: 4,708
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1 Post(s)
Liked: 25
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bill Mac View Post


I think the 4311 with XT32 would be a closer comparison to ARC over the 4310 with XT. Although for the money the MRX 300 and 500 are great AVRs with ARC being an excellent feature. I had a AVM 30 for awhile and I thought it was an excellent prepro.

Bill

That AVM 30 dates you a bit
John

Jayray
Read the FAQs
jayray is offline  
post #28 of 38 Old 05-29-2012, 08:34 AM
AVS Special Member
 
DS-21's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2005
Posts: 3,573
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 224 Post(s)
Liked: 247
Quote:
Originally Posted by John Clark View Post

Moparfan,

I've heard great things about the soundfield the Trinnov processor creates. Do you own one, and have the truly resolved the HDMI, and other, bugs, as reported?

FWIW, I went on an AVR buying/replacing spree after my old Denon AVR-4308ci/A crapped its digital board after less than three years of use - literally on Christmas morning last year! - and Denon's customer support basically said, "sucks to be you. It'll cost you $550-650 to fix, assuming we have the part. Which we won't bother to find out until you actually send the thing to our nearest authorized service center on your dime." I had all Denon boxes on December 24, 2011, within a quarter I had purged all the Denon boxes from my homes because of their risible after-sales support. (Note: Denon and Marantz share customer support resources.)

After surveying the field fairly extensively, now I own two MRX 300's and an R-972. I looked at Onkyo, but ultimately didn't see that they offered anything reasonably priced that would allow me to use Audyssey Pro to delete-option Audyssey's crappy speakers midrange compensation notch. I didn't look at Yamaha or Pioneer except cursorily, and that simply to determine that their room correction system are still too primitive. Marantz...not considered for the reason mentioned above.

I use the MRX 300 in the main system, and the R-972 in my office nearfield system, though I also plugged it into the main system. The second MRX 300 was driving the nearfield system, but it's currently in its box to be moved to a vacation home.

Some thoughts:

-I didn't get any HDMI bugs on the R-972 in the main system. (HDMI sources: AppleTV3, Oppo BDP-83.) However, I also don't have cable, and didn't watch any movies, because movies are not important to me. (I did, however, listen to both an SACD and a DVD-A, without issue.)

-The value of Anthem's QuickMeasure in helping set up a system in the first place (speaker placement, toe-in, etc.) cannot be overstated. At least for those who aren't already familiar with a good swept-sine based measurement program, such as FuzzMeasure, and have a calibrated mike, etc. (It's the only way to get a good measurement of the surround placement, absent a custom-authored multichannel disk with swept sine test tones for each channels.) It's easy to use, and accurate enough to give a good picture without being so detailed that the novice user ends up chasing inconsequentially narrow FR errors. If every receiver with a built-in calibrated measurement system doesn't implement a QuickMeasure copy in their next generation of AVR's, then they're simply negligent. It's that useful.

-In three different systems, Trinnov did a markedly better job of sub-mains integration than ARC or Audyssey MultEQ XT. With both ARC and Audyssey, I've needed to do some post-RC tweaking on my subwoofer processor, because the measurements the system takes don't properly account for the interaction of the mains and subs in the room. Trinnov, at least in my n=3 sample, got it right every time.

-Trinnov's remapping function is not needed in my setup, so I don't use it and wouldn't expect it to do anything. (Though I am interested in the "wide W" front setup that is mentioned in the Trinnov notes thread. Might be fun to try.) Outside of Trinnov's superiority in mains/sub integration, I find both systems do an excellent job. Both my main system and nearfield system, like any competently-designed multichannel system, uses three identical speakers, at the same height, and in the same orientation. Accordingly a great job of creating an immersive sound field without the need for band-aids. Both Trinnov and ARC solved the primary issue in my main system, which was lower mids/upper bass bloat due to the front mains being practically against the wall behind them.

-Overall, the Anthem's user interface is way, way better to actually use.

-No loudness compensation on the R-972, whereas MRX has Dolby Volume's volume modeler. I find loudness compensation, especially in the modern forms (DV modeler, Audyssey Dynamic EQ) very useful for lower-level listening.

-Hopefully Anthem will add impulse-response based distance settings to future iterations of the MRX. The tape-measure method is crude for mains, and utterly ineffective for systems that properly employ multiple subwoofers to smooth out the modal region response. For my multisub system in the main system, I plugged in the Trinnov-generated vector sum "distance" of the subs into my MRX, replacing an iteratively-derived value, and found I was able to reduce the amount of EQ required for ±2 dB response from 16-200Hz. (For now on, I'm always going to set distances based on impulse response measurements.)

-I did a quick level-matched (actually level-matched, i.e. matching voltage on the speaker terminals at 1kHz) sighted comparison, and based on that, at least in 2ch mode, I doubt anyone would ever hear the slightest difference between them.

-The R-972 is physically a much larger box.

-Not an issue unless you're using a separate amp, but the RCA shields on the R-972's preouts are actually built to stay on when you disconnect a cable. It seems the MRX's preout shields are designed to break away...

-Both seem to use the same binding posts, which are nice in part (clear covering so you can see the colored ring keyed to the CEA speaker color coding standard from above), and frustrating in part (collared, so really only bananas are practical). On my two units, the Sherwood's seem slightly better. The MRX's wobble a bit. But the inability to use spades (or easily use bare wire) is more of a demerit for the R-972 than the MRX, because R-972 is already so deep. The MRX plus even excessively long bananas posts is still going to be less deep than the R-972. Still, I don't get why all these AVR's don't just move to banana jacks instead of faux binding posts. Or, for that matter, Phoenix terminals for speaker output, as they are more compact and certainly cheaper. Or Speakons, as they're objectively the best loudspeaker connector around - inherently insulated, multipolar so as to be impossible to hook up in reverse polarity without intentionally rewiring the connector, and quick-disconnect, and positive locking without the need to screw in the plug as with Phoenix terminals. Obviously, sound-wise it is no different from any other connector - is perhaps a bit much, even though I bet a 2-pole Speakon terminal costs about the same as cheap faux binding posts and doesn't take up much more space.

I ended up deciding to keep the MRX 300 in the main system and use the R-972 in the nearfield system for five reasons:

(1) ARC didn't do a good job on my nearfield system, perhaps because it expects more variance in measurements due to different seating position. Trinnov's "4 mikes at 1 go" measurement system seems better suited to a nearfield setup.

(2) ARC, after I properly corrected the upper bass using sweeps through the mains and multisub system, rather than discrete measurements of each, does a fantastic job.

(3) I didn't want my fiancee to deal with an AVR in the main system that requires more of a, shall we say, expert touch. The MRX's only material usability flaws are the long turn-on delay (which means the Harmony One's "Help!" button often gets pushed to turn everything on right), and the lack of ability to set a Dolby Volume leveler setting independently for each source. (One can set a DV modeler setting for each source.) The R-972, to start, doesn't have an on-screen volume bar. Furthermore, its IR remote sensor is a lot more picky, even when the room is sprayed with IR by a Harmony One. (I don't keep my AVR front-and-center, because equipment racks between the speakers are deleterious to sound. It's off to the side and mostly hidden out of sight by a daybed. Also, I do think the user interface could be better thought-out.

(4) I was able to set up the R-972 as a 5.1/2.1 system in two rooms with Trinnov correction, all powered by the AVR, because my study is close enough to the master bedroom that running three wires (L/R speaker, RCA for sub) wasn't an eyesore. That let me pull the Meridian 551 integrated amp out of the bedroom. Less boxes is always a good thing.

(5) The R-972 didn't easily fit in my living room. Just a little too deep, with bananas. For reference, the Sherwood A-965 separate amp (a fantastic piece, for those who don't might an 80lb Class AB boat anchor) does fit and is used in my main system. But it has traditional multiway binding posts with no collar (keyed to the CEA standard as well, but solid-color rather than clear-with-a-ring-at-the-tip) and a cross-drilled center post, so I was able to use spade lugs and RCA's with short barrels to keep the gross depth down.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Venomous View Post

Yup and onkyos flat out suck, prematurely breakdown and onkyo is a warranty nightmare..you would think I learned my lesson after owning three of them...

Ditto Denon. These companies just haven't trained their customer support staffs to adequately meet the reasonably expectations of customers who plonk down four figures on an AVR. Anthem's after-sales support, from my limited experience - which I hope stays limited because the box continues to work for quite a while! - seems much better.

--
"In many cases there aren’t two sides unless one side is 'reality' and the other is 'nonsense.'" - Phil Plait
Serious Audio Blog 
Multichannel music (and video) urban loft living room system 
DS-21 is offline  
post #29 of 38 Old 05-29-2012, 11:16 AM
AVS Special Member
 
Ryan1's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2001
Posts: 1,850
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1 Post(s)
Liked: 36
^^^^^

I largely agree with the above.

I do own the R-972.

Trinnov did a very noticeably better job of taming my rather bright room than Audyssey XT. Two bright rooms, actually, since it feeds both my TV room (9.1) and my stereo room. The improvement was dramatic enough that my wife immediately noted that things sound much better (I was never able to integrate the sub well prior to Trinnov and she hated it). This is probably the only time, ever, that she has noticed, or commented on, any change in our sound system.

Dialog is also much improved and much easier to understand than before. I thought I would miss Audyssey Dynamic EQ and Dynamic Volume, but I do not at all. Maybe because the dialog is crystal clear even at very low volume and because the +6 bass curve I use gives me enough bass even when the volume is down.

I do use the spacial remapping (5 speakers in front, including Heights, plus 4 for surround) and Trinnov does make the speakers disappear, with the stage literally enveloping you. It is quite remarkable. IMO, it integrates the Heights much better than Dolby Pro Logic IIz, even though it does not send dedicated information to them.

Overall, now that I've heard Trinnov, I would not want to trade it for anything else I've heard.

I have not heard ARC, but it does appear to be well thought out system and those who have it seem very happy with it. But, as I said, I LOVE the 3D spatial remapping that Trinnov does in my setting, so I'd consider it a significant advantage.

The R-972 is a bit finicky with HDMI, but it should work fine in most set ups. It is also HUGE. Too huge for my taste (but then I wish everyone would move to cooler, smaller Class D amps )

There is an audio delay of a few seconds when switching sources, but for me it's not an issue, since all I have hooked up is a BR HTPC. Most of the time there is no significant audio delay when switching TV channels through the HTPC, but nowadays I almost never watch TV anymore, so I haven't tested it thoroughly.

The one feature I did miss initially was AirPlay, but then I discovered the Aerodrome application for PC, which has remedied this shortcoming (XBMC Eden also has AirPlay built in). Now I can again stream MOG (as well as pretty much any video) from my iPad. If you are not using an HTPC, adding either an Apple TV or a Boxee would also provide AirPlay capability.

BTW, the R-972 is reasonably robust, so unless you have some unusual requirements, it (and all the other AVRs you are considering) should be able to power most consumer systems without the need for separate amplification.

At the end, since I am completely enamored with Trinnov, the R-972 simply does not have any sub-$6000+ competition, IMO.
Ryan1 is offline  
post #30 of 38 Old 05-29-2012, 03:11 PM
AVS Special Member
 
Venomous's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2004
Location: Huntington Beach/San Diego CA
Posts: 1,198
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Liked: 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by DS-21 View Post

FWIW, I went on an AVR buying/replacing spree after my old Denon AVR-4308ci/A crapped its digital board after less than three years of use - literally on Christmas morning last year! - and Denon's customer support basically said, "sucks to be you. It'll cost you $550-650 to fix, assuming we have the part. Which we won't bother to find out until you actually send the thing to our nearest authorized service center on your dime." I had all Denon boxes on December 24, 2011, within a quarter I had purged all the Denon boxes from my homes because of their risible after-sales support. (Note: Denon and Marantz share customer support resources.)

After surveying the field fairly extensively, now I own two MRX 300's and an R-972. I looked at Onkyo, but ultimately didn't see that they offered anything reasonably priced that would allow me to use Audyssey Pro to delete-option Audyssey's crappy speakers midrange compensation notch. I didn't look at Yamaha or Pioneer except cursorily, and that simply to determine that their room correction system are still too primitive. Marantz...not considered for the reason mentioned above.

I use the MRX 300 in the main system, and the R-972 in my office nearfield system, though I also plugged it into the main system. The second MRX 300 was driving the nearfield system, but it's currently in its box to be moved to a vacation home.

Some thoughts:

-I didn't get any HDMI bugs on the R-972 in the main system. (HDMI sources: AppleTV3, Oppo BDP-83.) However, I also don't have cable, and didn't watch any movies, because movies are not important to me. (I did, however, listen to both an SACD and a DVD-A, without issue.)

-The value of Anthem's QuickMeasure in helping set up a system in the first place (speaker placement, toe-in, etc.) cannot be overstated. At least for those who aren't already familiar with a good swept-sine based measurement program, such as FuzzMeasure, and have a calibrated mike, etc. (It's the only way to get a good measurement of the surround placement, absent a custom-authored multichannel disk with swept sine test tones for each channels.) It's easy to use, and accurate enough to give a good picture without being so detailed that the novice user ends up chasing inconsequentially narrow FR errors. If every receiver with a built-in calibrated measurement system doesn't implement a QuickMeasure copy in their next generation of AVR's, then they're simply negligent. It's that useful.

-In three different systems, Trinnov did a markedly better job of sub-mains integration than ARC or Audyssey MultEQ XT. With both ARC and Audyssey, I've needed to do some post-RC tweaking on my subwoofer processor, because the measurements the system takes don't properly account for the interaction of the mains and subs in the room. Trinnov, at least in my n=3 sample, got it right every time.

-Trinnov's remapping function is not needed in my setup, so I don't use it and wouldn't expect it to do anything. (Though I am interested in the "wide W" front setup that is mentioned in the Trinnov notes thread. Might be fun to try.) Outside of Trinnov's superiority in mains/sub integration, I find both systems do an excellent job. Both my main system and nearfield system, like any competently-designed multichannel system, uses three identical speakers, at the same height, and in the same orientation. Accordingly a great job of creating an immersive sound field without the need for band-aids. Both Trinnov and ARC solved the primary issue in my main system, which was lower mids/upper bass bloat due to the front mains being practically against the wall behind them.

-Overall, the Anthem's user interface is way, way better to actually use.

-No loudness compensation on the R-972, whereas MRX has Dolby Volume's volume modeler. I find loudness compensation, especially in the modern forms (DV modeler, Audyssey Dynamic EQ) very useful for lower-level listening.

-Hopefully Anthem will add impulse-response based distance settings to future iterations of the MRX. The tape-measure method is crude for mains, and utterly ineffective for systems that properly employ multiple subwoofers to smooth out the modal region response. For my multisub system in the main system, I plugged in the Trinnov-generated vector sum "distance" of the subs into my MRX, replacing an iteratively-derived value, and found I was able to reduce the amount of EQ required for ±2 dB response from 16-200Hz. (For now on, I'm always going to set distances based on impulse response measurements.)

-I did a quick level-matched (actually level-matched, i.e. matching voltage on the speaker terminals at 1kHz) sighted comparison, and based on that, at least in 2ch mode, I doubt anyone would ever hear the slightest difference between them.

-The R-972 is physically a much larger box.

-Not an issue unless you're using a separate amp, but the RCA shields on the R-972's preouts are actually built to stay on when you disconnect a cable. It seems the MRX's preout shields are designed to break away...

-Both seem to use the same binding posts, which are nice in part (clear covering so you can see the colored ring keyed to the CEA speaker color coding standard from above), and frustrating in part (collared, so really only bananas are practical). On my two units, the Sherwood's seem slightly better. The MRX's wobble a bit. But the inability to use spades (or easily use bare wire) is more of a demerit for the R-972 than the MRX, because R-972 is already so deep. The MRX plus even excessively long bananas posts is still going to be less deep than the R-972. Still, I don't get why all these AVR's don't just move to banana jacks instead of faux binding posts. Or, for that matter, Phoenix terminals for speaker output, as they are more compact and certainly cheaper. Or Speakons, as they're objectively the best loudspeaker connector around - inherently insulated, multipolar so as to be impossible to hook up in reverse polarity without intentionally rewiring the connector, and quick-disconnect, and positive locking without the need to screw in the plug as with Phoenix terminals. Obviously, sound-wise it is no different from any other connector - is perhaps a bit much, even though I bet a 2-pole Speakon terminal costs about the same as cheap faux binding posts and doesn't take up much more space.

I ended up deciding to keep the MRX 300 in the main system and use the R-972 in the nearfield system for five reasons:

(1) ARC didn't do a good job on my nearfield system, perhaps because it expects more variance in measurements due to different seating position. Trinnov's "4 mikes at 1 go" measurement system seems better suited to a nearfield setup.

(2) ARC, after I properly corrected the upper bass using sweeps through the mains and multisub system, rather than discrete measurements of each, does a fantastic job.

(3) I didn't want my fiancee to deal with an AVR in the main system that requires more of a, shall we say, expert touch. The MRX's only material usability flaws are the long turn-on delay (which means the Harmony One's "Help!" button often gets pushed to turn everything on right), and the lack of ability to set a Dolby Volume leveler setting independently for each source. (One can set a DV modeler setting for each source.) The R-972, to start, doesn't have an on-screen volume bar. Furthermore, its IR remote sensor is a lot more picky, even when the room is sprayed with IR by a Harmony One. (I don't keep my AVR front-and-center, because equipment racks between the speakers are deleterious to sound. It's off to the side and mostly hidden out of sight by a daybed. Also, I do think the user interface could be better thought-out.

(4) I was able to set up the R-972 as a 5.1/2.1 system in two rooms with Trinnov correction, all powered by the AVR, because my study is close enough to the master bedroom that running three wires (L/R speaker, RCA for sub) wasn't an eyesore. That let me pull the Meridian 551 integrated amp out of the bedroom. Less boxes is always a good thing.

(5) The R-972 didn't easily fit in my living room. Just a little too deep, with bananas. For reference, the Sherwood A-965 separate amp (a fantastic piece, for those who don't might an 80lb Class AB boat anchor) does fit and is used in my main system. But it has traditional multiway binding posts with no collar (keyed to the CEA standard as well, but solid-color rather than clear-with-a-ring-at-the-tip) and a cross-drilled center post, so I was able to use spade lugs and RCA's with short barrels to keep the gross depth down.



Ditto Denon. These companies just haven't trained their customer support staffs to adequately meet the reasonably expectations of customers who plonk down four figures on an AVR. Anthem's after-sales support, from my limited experience - which I hope stays limited because the box continues to work for quite a while! - seems much better.

Thanks for this comprehensive breakdown comparing the three.
Venomous is offline  
Reply Receivers, Amps, and Processors

Tags
Sherwood Newcastle R 972

Thread Tools
Show Printable Version Show Printable Version
Email this Page Email this Page


Forum Jump: 

Posting Rules  
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off