Pre/Pro choices: Integra DHC 80.3, Marantz AV7005 or Denon AVR 4311CI? - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 14 Old 07-01-2012, 10:35 AM - Thread Starter
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I am close to deciding between Kef Reference 205/2s or Revel Studio2s and need to decide on electronics to go with them. The 80.3 has excellent DACs, XT32 and it's USB reads the digital files in IPods - my collection is primarily in Apple Lossless. I will likely go with an Oppo 93 and bring things in digital and let the prepro do the conversion. Does not make sense to me to bring in analog then do digital processing. The negative is the 80.3 draws 1.2 amps or 130 - 140 watts of heat. The AV7005 only draws 60 watts which is a big plus for me. The AV7005 has lesser DACs and only XT. However the 80.3 SQ seems to get mixed reviews (treble) but the AV7005 seems to get high marks consistently and you can get a great deal right now on it. For the near future I will have 7.1 with front heights.

I plan to get a three channel amp in any case, but the other option would be to get a Denon AVR 4311 CI and run the four surrounds with it. Plus is XT32 and good internal amps but not sure how good the DACs. I could even use my existing Onkyo TX-NR1008 which also has good internal amps, but only XT. Don't consider my 4310 CI as an option.

So should I go the full prepro route or go with a receiver and save buying a 4 channel amp for the surrounds. 50/50 mix between 2 channel and HT. More concerned on music SQ than HT.

Main Kef: Reference 205/2 & 202/2c, Surrounds: Kef XQ40, Velodyne Optimum 12, Integra DHC 80.3, Oppo BDP-103, Bryston 4Bsst2, Parasound Halo A31. Second B&W: 685 (3), CCM618, Def Tech Powerfield 1500, Onkyo TX-NR1008, DBP 2010, Samsung BD-C7900, Zone 2 Klipsch AW650. Sitting still CCM616, Kef...
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post #2 of 14 Old 07-01-2012, 11:42 AM
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Honestly, I would go with the 80.3, and add a seven channel amp. With the system you're putting together, I do not know of a receivers ampliifier section that will do it justice. Others will tell you differently, and granted, it depends on the size of your room, but a pre-pro and separate amp is the optimal solution. I'm running a Legacy Focus based home theater system, and I can tell you that in my moderately sized room, 200wpc, minimum, is sometimes needed for realistic reproduction of movies. I previously tried 125wpc and had clipping issues. I also firmly believe that only 200-300 quality watts per channel will allow you to truly hear the real potential of good speakers in a home theater setting.

My strong recommendations would be the Integra 80.3, and one of these two amplifiers, dependent on the size of your room (great values):

http://www.outlawaudio.com/products/7700.html

http://www.outlawaudio.com/products/7900.html


We just installed the 7900 in anew home theater system I put together for a friend,and I am extremely impressed with its sound quality, build quality and overall performance.


Here is a review of it:

http://hometheaterreview.com/outlaw-model-7900-seven-channel-amplifier-reviewed/

It also received a 2011 Home Theater "Best Of" award. Are there better amplifiers out there in the world, yes, good enough to hear a meaningful difference in a home theater system, doubtful. Not to mention they are all much more expensive. If I needed to replace my amplifier(s) this is the choice I would make myself at this point in time.Dollar for dollar, I think it is the best value out there.





John
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post #3 of 14 Old 07-01-2012, 12:14 PM - Thread Starter
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John Clark,

I did not want to get into amp choices yet but I am planning on likely 300 Watts per channel for the front three. Example ATI AT3003 (300 wpc) and if needed a AT1804 (180 wpc) for the heights and surrounds. I believe the amps in 4311 would be adequate for the heights and surrounds, just whether it would be as good as a prepro.

Edit: if I go Studio2 & Voice2 then for sure 300 wpc x 3 but if I go 205/2 & 202/2c I could also do 300 x 2 and get a five channel for the rest, say 200 wpc. Right now I want to figure the front end.

Thanks, Jim

Main Kef: Reference 205/2 & 202/2c, Surrounds: Kef XQ40, Velodyne Optimum 12, Integra DHC 80.3, Oppo BDP-103, Bryston 4Bsst2, Parasound Halo A31. Second B&W: 685 (3), CCM618, Def Tech Powerfield 1500, Onkyo TX-NR1008, DBP 2010, Samsung BD-C7900, Zone 2 Klipsch AW650. Sitting still CCM616, Kef...
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post #4 of 14 Old 07-01-2012, 01:00 PM
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Nothng wrong with ATI. Fine amps, when you get to deciding that point. From my perspective, though, the 80.3 for the front end is a no brainer. Nothng else offers all it does and any other truly worthwhile contenders are far more expensive.


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post #5 of 14 Old 07-02-2012, 04:40 PM - Thread Starter
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I've gotten feedback from a couple outside this thread to not go with the 4311 as a combo prepro surround amp. Edit: One mentioned something about a bump at 100 Hz??? So right now I have low heat, great price AV7005 vs high heat, more feature 80.3. What will have the better 2 channel sound, assuming same amplification used,and bringing in digital signals?

Main Kef: Reference 205/2 & 202/2c, Surrounds: Kef XQ40, Velodyne Optimum 12, Integra DHC 80.3, Oppo BDP-103, Bryston 4Bsst2, Parasound Halo A31. Second B&W: 685 (3), CCM618, Def Tech Powerfield 1500, Onkyo TX-NR1008, DBP 2010, Samsung BD-C7900, Zone 2 Klipsch AW650. Sitting still CCM616, Kef...
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post #6 of 14 Old 07-02-2012, 04:47 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jima4a View Post

I've gotten feedback from a couple outside this thread to not go with the 4311 as a combo prepro surround amp. Something about a bump at 100 Hz??? So right now I have low heat, great price AV7005 vs high heat, more feature 80.3. What will have the better 2 channel sound, assuming same amplification used,and bringing in digital signals?

Huh? Did those outside this thread go in detail about the "bump at 100 Hz" that plagues the 4311? I'd be curious about this as I own the 4311 and this is the first I have heard of "a bump at 100 Hz".

Bill

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post #7 of 14 Old 07-02-2012, 05:27 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bill Mac View Post

Huh? Did those outside this thread go in detail about the "bump at 100 Hz" that plagues the 4311? I'd be curious about this as I own the 4311 and this is the first I have heard of "a bump at 100 Hz".
Bill

I have been talking to quite a number of folks and one person mentioned something about a bump (I edited the original post). I was talking through the car radio (blue tooth) and was not 100 percent sure on what was said. A second source was also not hot on that option but no discussion of any kind of non-linearity. If I can not evaluate direct, I try to get a bunch of input from reputable sources and look for common themes. This topic seems quite polar, some say a really good AVR such as the 4311 is just as good as a prepro (minus balanced outputs) but others feel that is not true. I already own two AVRs so I don't want to buy a third if it is only a marginal upgrade. Based on features, I would think the 4311 should be superior to the AV7005 and they are currently close in price. The Integra seems a step further even. I was hoping to hear from owners of all three options but I do see there is quite a flood of 4311 thread subjects so my timing may be poor.

I would love to know if others are using the 4311 as a prepro and if so, what are you driving with them, speakers and amps. What have you compared this with?

Main Kef: Reference 205/2 & 202/2c, Surrounds: Kef XQ40, Velodyne Optimum 12, Integra DHC 80.3, Oppo BDP-103, Bryston 4Bsst2, Parasound Halo A31. Second B&W: 685 (3), CCM618, Def Tech Powerfield 1500, Onkyo TX-NR1008, DBP 2010, Samsung BD-C7900, Zone 2 Klipsch AW650. Sitting still CCM616, Kef...
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post #8 of 14 Old 07-02-2012, 06:33 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jima4a View Post

I have been talking to quite a number of folks and one person mentioned something about a bump (I edited the original post). I was talking through the car radio (blue tooth) and was not 100 percent sure on what was said. A second source was also not hot on that option but no discussion of any kind of non-linearity. If I can not evaluate direct, I try to get a bunch of input from reputable sources and look for common themes. This topic seems quite polar, some say a really good AVR such as the 4311 is just as good as a prepro (minus balanced outputs) but others feel that is not true. I already own two AVRs so I don't want to buy a third if it is only a marginal upgrade. Based on features, I would think the 4311 should be superior to the AV7005 and they are currently close in price. The Integra seems a step further even. I was hoping to hear from owners of all three options but I do see there is quite a flood of 4311 thread subjects so my timing may be poor.
I would love to know if others are using the 4311 as a prepro and if so, what are you driving with them, speakers and amps. What have you compared this with?

I recently bought the 4311 which replaced an Onkyo 886. I really do not see any issues with using an AVR as a prepro. I have used AVRs as prepros in the past and a number of dedicated prepros with both working well for me. I'm using a Boston Acoustics A7200 (Sherwood A-965 clone) amp and Salk SongTowers and SongCenter speakers. Sonically I feel the 4311 is better than the 886 specifically with the addition of XT32 opposed to XT with the 886. I would say the 4311 will be a step up in SQ over the 1008 and the 4310 due to the addition of XT32. But other than that I think either would be good choices as prepros. I think some get the impression that AVRs do not make good prepros. I'd like to see someone in a blind test consistently tell the difference between the 3008/5008 and the 5508 wink.gif.

Bill

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post #9 of 14 Old 07-02-2012, 06:50 PM - Thread Starter
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Bill, thanks for your take on this! Jim

Main Kef: Reference 205/2 & 202/2c, Surrounds: Kef XQ40, Velodyne Optimum 12, Integra DHC 80.3, Oppo BDP-103, Bryston 4Bsst2, Parasound Halo A31. Second B&W: 685 (3), CCM618, Def Tech Powerfield 1500, Onkyo TX-NR1008, DBP 2010, Samsung BD-C7900, Zone 2 Klipsch AW650. Sitting still CCM616, Kef...
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post #10 of 14 Old 07-02-2012, 07:35 PM
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I have a 80.3 and a 4311, I've never seen a bump at 100HZ and I've done extensive REW measurements as well a a audyssey pro install on both. Out of the 2, I'd take the 80.3, it's a really nice unit if you can get it for a good price and don't need 11.2.

i'm currently running a xpa-5 on the 4311 and a D-sonic 500x7 and 2 Red Dragon audio 1000 watt monos on the 80.3

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post #11 of 14 Old 07-02-2012, 08:37 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by N8DOGG View Post

I have a 80.3 and a 4311, I've never seen a bump at 100HZ and I've done extensive REW measurements as well a a audyssey pro install on both. Out of the 2, I'd take the 80.3, it's a really nice unit if you can get it for a good price and don't need 11.2.
i'm currently running a xpa-5 on the 4311 and a D-sonic 500x7 and 2 Red Dragon audio 1000 watt monos on the 80.3

N8DOGG, Thanks for your input. If I remember correct you had Sig8s but recently changed out for a more high efficiency design. So the 80.3 is limited to 9? That is okay as I am only 7.1 and don't see a move soon. What is your thought on 2 channel for the 80.3? Jim

Main Kef: Reference 205/2 & 202/2c, Surrounds: Kef XQ40, Velodyne Optimum 12, Integra DHC 80.3, Oppo BDP-103, Bryston 4Bsst2, Parasound Halo A31. Second B&W: 685 (3), CCM618, Def Tech Powerfield 1500, Onkyo TX-NR1008, DBP 2010, Samsung BD-C7900, Zone 2 Klipsch AW650. Sitting still CCM616, Kef...
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post #12 of 14 Old 07-02-2012, 09:11 PM
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Most AVRs have a max output voltage half or less than the input sensitivity of most amps people use, so you might want to check that. Not sure how many different ways it could be a problem, but the door is open. The smaller multi channel amps, you know 5x125 or whatever, often are seemingly made for AVR as pre-pro use as they match up well this way. If you're looking at a long-term investment in your AVR/pre-pro, future amp upgrades could be a problem.

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post #13 of 14 Old 07-03-2012, 11:15 AM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by fjames View Post

Most AVRs have a max output voltage half or less than the input sensitivity of most amps people use, so you might want to check that. Not sure how many different ways it could be a problem, but the door is open. The smaller multi channel amps, you know 5x125 or whatever, often are seemingly made for AVR as pre-pro use as they match up well this way. If you're looking at a long-term investment in your AVR/pre-pro, future amp upgrades could be a problem.

That is a good point. Emotiva runs their amp gain much higher to match up with lower end AVRs. However, my 1008 did not seem to need that gain I would guess the 4311 would not either.

Thanks for your post!

Main Kef: Reference 205/2 & 202/2c, Surrounds: Kef XQ40, Velodyne Optimum 12, Integra DHC 80.3, Oppo BDP-103, Bryston 4Bsst2, Parasound Halo A31. Second B&W: 685 (3), CCM618, Def Tech Powerfield 1500, Onkyo TX-NR1008, DBP 2010, Samsung BD-C7900, Zone 2 Klipsch AW650. Sitting still CCM616, Kef...
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post #14 of 14 Old 07-09-2012, 03:31 PM - Thread Starter
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I have ordered an Integra 80.3 but they are on allocation (anticipation of 80.4 or next gen) so I am strongly considering canceling the order and getting the 4311. I plan on at a mimimum a two channel but more likely a three channel amp. I know the DACs are likely better in the Integra (32 bit Burr Browns) but what else do I give up. I would gain amps for the heights and surrounds with the 4311. I have also seen on the threads about a mid range notch but i guess that is for XT32 (?), not specifically the 4311 which may have been what someone was referring as mentioned earlier in this thread.

Main Kef: Reference 205/2 & 202/2c, Surrounds: Kef XQ40, Velodyne Optimum 12, Integra DHC 80.3, Oppo BDP-103, Bryston 4Bsst2, Parasound Halo A31. Second B&W: 685 (3), CCM618, Def Tech Powerfield 1500, Onkyo TX-NR1008, DBP 2010, Samsung BD-C7900, Zone 2 Klipsch AW650. Sitting still CCM616, Kef...
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