[Edit - changed thread title to reflect my current considerations]
I am looking into buying my first ever AV Receiver. I've been browsing suggestions on CNET. Looking at this years models, and considering my price range, I believe I have narrowed it down to two receivers, the Onkyo TX-NR626 and the Sony STR-DN840.
I believe both have features I desire. I'll be playing blurays, PS3, Cable TV, and music in a 12' x 15' room. I'd like to stream music from Pandora and other internet radio. I also have a large collection of live music in FLAC format that I would like to stream over local network. (I think these things are all possible with these two receivers?). Both receivers have built in WiFi.
My TV is a Samsung UN46EH6000. I have already purchased 5.1 speakers - the Energy Take Classic 5.1. These speakers are 8 ohm and take 100 W.
At 8 Ohm the Onkyo puts out 95 W. I think the Sony puts out 150 W. So, I'd need to be careful with the output of the Sony. I can limit output with a setting on the Sony?
I've read in forums here about issues with the HDMI through on the Onkyos failing due to overheating, but have also read that that might be fixed with the newer models.
I've also read here that the Sony might have issues interfacing with the Samsung TV: http://www.avsforum.com/t/1490262/sony-str-dn840-issues
The price difference - Sony is $450, Onkyo is $500. I have Best Buy gift cards from points on a credit card, so will be buying from there. I'm considering the Geek Squad Protection. Is this worthless or something to at least consider for a first time receiver owner?
I've likely left out information that would help you provide feedback. Please let me know. And, what other considerations should I be taking into account?
Thanks so much in advance for any advice!
Alternatively, what would be the Denon model that closely matches this Onkyo and Sony?
Possibly the AVR-X2000 at ~$650? However, from what I can tell, this does not have wireless built in. I might be able to reconfigure how I have network cable coming in to the house. I have a single cable modem. I could locate this at the TV, have the output still plugged into my wireless router, and have the Denon hard wired into a jack on the wireless router... ?
The Denon has AirPlay, while the Onkyo does not. For some Apple freaks that's important.
Sound quality (imho) will be very similar.
Denon's iPad app is probably more developed than the Onkyo one. I'm most familiar with the Onkyo interface and less familiar with the most recent Denon offerings.
Denon has fixed pricing for resellers....ie: folks are not able to sell it for anything less than a certain manufacturer provided Minimum Advertised Price....while Onkyo might have a MAP...you'll find folks online who are more flexible in offering discounts on the Onkyo, then compared to Denon.
I wouldn't recommend the warranty thru Best Buy - that's where the retailers make their money is on warranties and HDMI cables. If you have an issue with an Onkyo unit...the manufacturer will typically stand behind it and service/support as appropriate.
Denon has a 2 or maybe 3 year warranty while Onkyo's is 1 year
Onkyo has a 2nd HDMI OUT so you can send HDMI video to a second room or 2nd TV, etc. as part of the Zone 2 functionality. Denon's just has 1 HDMI output.
Thank you for the feedback!
I was attracted to the wireless features at first, but I do have a not so big condo in Boston, about 1100 square feet. I could move my cable modem from office to living room, split the cable there between cable TV box and modem, and wire the receiver (and PS3) into the spare jacks at the back of the wireless router. Would have no impact on laptop use (wireless router) and I could run a < 50 foot CAT6 cable through basement to office.
Airplay isn't huge for me. I only have an old iPod and a large iTunes collection on a Windows PC. Though, I also have a large collection of live recordings in FLAC (and also SHN) format. I'd like to figure out how to play them from my desktop through the receiver.
For the foreseeable future, we will just have the one TV, so I don't need another HDMI out for Zone 2.
Denon warranty is 3 year for this receiver. The Onkyo is two years (according to Onkyo website).
I believe one of my biggest concerns here is what I have read about the Onkyo receivers at this price level and the issues they have had with the HDMI failing (overheating circuits?) It's not clear that this issue has been addressed in newer units, and how good is their customer service in dealing with it?
Any other feedback?
Apologies for the bump. I'm hoping to finalize purchase by the end of the week.
Thanks so much!
I noticed that the Denon's owners thread is much much longer than the Onkyo's. Is that a good sign or a bad sign?
Depending if you live near a Fry's Electronics the Denon x2000 will come on sale for $499 at least once a month.
That right there would keep me from buying the Onkyo. Usually the HDMI don't occur until close to 2 years when the warranty is about to expire. So you wont know about the 626 for a while.
3 vs 2 year warranty itself is worth something.
How about the difference in how the sound is produced? Which would also be good for listening to stereo music?
The Onkyo "employs WRAT, 3-Stage Inverted Darlington Circuitry, H.C.P.S, and Optimum Gain Volume Circuitry for dynamic, detailed, clear sound."
While for the Denon "The power amplifier circuit adopts a discrete-circuit configuration that achieves high-quality surround sound reproduction. To faithfully reproduce the original surround sound, each of the Denon AVR-X2000's seven channels are equipped with its own high-current power amp of equal power. Since these power amps also use discrete circuits configured with parts strictly selected for their contribution to high sound quality, rather than with low-cost integrated circuits (ICs), the surround sound playback is of impeccably high quality."
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The Onkyo 626 features Audyssey MultEQ while the Denon X2000 features the more advanced MultEQ XT such that the audio quality should be a notch higher with the X2000. Also, regarding a wireless connection to the home's router, you can purchase a router that can be set in bridge mode that you would connect to the AVR and it would wireless connect to the home's router. Also there are Powerline adapters that use the home's electrical wiring to connect the AVR to the router.
Hello, thank you for the feedback.
Wireless connection isn't a huge issue. I can locate my cable modem and wireless router next to me home theater system.
For audio quality, the Audyssey MultEQ vs Audyssey MultEQ XT is just how the receiver adjusts the output to compensate for the acoustics of the room.
My question above on audio quality was more about the differences in how the two receivers amplify the inputs. I.e. "WRAT, 3-Stage Inverted Darlington Circuitry" in the Onkyo versus the "discrete-circuit configuration" in the Denon.
Also, which would be better for listening to 2-channel music? Is that where MultEQ vs MultEQ XT is a factor?
Panasonic 60VT60 (cal by DNice)
Denon 5200 w/ Outlaw 2200 Amps (3)
Ascend Acoustics Sierra 2s F/R & Horizon w/ RAAL Center; Sierra 1s Surrounds; DefTech PM1000 Fronts, Ascend HTM-200s Top Middle and PSB S5 Rear Surrounds; PSA v1800 & SVS PC12+ Subs
Oppo 103; Onkyo HD-DVD; Apple TV & Roku/Fire Sticks
I would spend some time reading here, as well as the rest of the website. I wouldn't buy a receiver that only had MultEQ by the way.
So, the main difference is that MultEQ XT has 8 times higher filter resolution on the satellites than does the MultEQ? (And 8 microphone positions instead of 6)
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