Originally Posted by exm
You can have bad luck with a unit. In general, the Marantz units have a good reputation for being reliable. Although I personally would spend a few more dollars to get a new unit with warranty.
As far as Onkyo is concerned... I really hated the sound of the 885. It sounded like a receiver to me, so for me the upgrade to the Marantz was worth every penny. I'm not sure if the 886 was such a big upgrade over the 885. Anyway, most reviewers agree that the AV8801 is a great unit (even when it retailed over $3,500) and I can wholeheartedly recommend it.
I can certainly understand bad luck with a unit
I had to reset my Marantz 8801 to get it to operate just the other day. I have done a couple of resets on the Denon 4520 receiver and it also has been to the service center once. Going back in time I had a 4310 that I just thought was a crappy unit and sold it and a 4308 that Denon bought back for multiple repair reasons
I had quite a few Onkyo's..875..905..906...885 ..5008 and 5009....most of which have had HDMI board issues
In fact I have a 906 packed in the closest right now that has some bad HDMI ports
The Pioneer Elite and Yamaha units...for me...have been more reliable than the Onkyo/Integra or D&M products
Its has been many years since I owned the 885...but at the time I recall liking the sound based on what else was available at that time
In later generations the 5008 was a major upgrade from the 885
I dont know what you mean when you say it sounded like a receiver?
As I have said before
1. I think the newer higher end Onkyo/Integra and D&M products with Audyssey XT32 sound just about the same
2. I seriously doubt in an unsighted test I could tell the difference in my Marantz 8801 and Denon 4520( used as a preamp)
I agree with you the Marantz 8801 is a very good unit as are its Onkyo 5509/Integra 80.3 competition
The Asian branded products in this category offer some amazing value...especially a year or so after introduction when they are at closeout prices
The delta to the flagship products...Krell..Anthem etc is many times more money for (IMO) a small performance upgrade in surround
For pure music listening those products are typically(IMO) have a more discernible level of higher performance vs the Asians