Official Pioneer Elite SC-71 Receiver Thread - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 256 Old 01-20-2014, 10:33 PM - Thread Starter
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Surprised not to find an "official" thread for the Pioneer Elite SC-71.  Mine is on order and I'm excited for it's arrival.  Seems there are lots of questions and requests for comparisons, but no official thread.  If I neglected some formality to creating an official thread, or posted in the wrong place, please point me in the right direction.

 

For the price I've seen this receiver selling for recently, I'm guessing there will be lots more interest in learning about this remarkable piece of Pioneer Elite gear.

 

http://images.search.yahoo.com/images/view;_ylt=A0PDoKryR99SYS0AlDGJzbkF;_ylu=X3oDMTIyazk3NDhtBHNlYwNzcgRzbGsDaW1nBG9pZANlZTI3YzgyMzRkMDQ2NjhhNGIwMTI2NmRkNGNkZDExNgRncG9zAzEEaXQDYmluZw--?back=http%3A%2F%2Fimages.search.yahoo.com%2Fsearch%2Fimages%3Fp%3Dpioneer%2Bsc-71%26ei%3Dutf-8%26tab%3Dorganic%26ri%3D1&w=880&h=420&imgurl=av-receivers.net%2Fwp-content%2Fuploads%2FPioneer-Elite-SC-71.jpg&rurl=http%3A%2F%2Fav-receivers.net%2Fpioneer%2Fpioneer-elite-sc-71-review%2F&size=150.9KB&name=%3Cb%3EPioneer+%3C%2Fb%3EElite+%3Cb%3ESC%3C%2Fb%3E-%3Cb%3E71+%3C%2Fb%3EReview&p=pioneer+sc-71&oid=ee27c8234d04668a4b01266dd4cdd116&fr2=&fr=&tt=%3Cb%3EPioneer+%3C%2Fb%3EElite+%3Cb%3ESC%3C%2Fb%3E-%3Cb%3E71+%3C%2Fb%3EReview&b=0&ni=21&no=1&ts=&tab=organic&sigr=11rus5k80&sigb=12m53in7l&sigi=11rbrj0fg&.crumb=qSwZPJsGvRx&


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post #2 of 256 Old 01-21-2014, 08:23 PM - Thread Starter
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http://www.pioneerelectronics.com/PUSA/Home/AV-Receivers/Elite+Receivers/SC-71


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post #3 of 256 Old 01-22-2014, 10:54 AM - Thread Starter
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post #4 of 256 Old 01-22-2014, 01:19 PM
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congrats on getting the 71! when you get it hooked up, you'll have to post about it. there are a lot of Pioneer and Pioneer SC owners in the forum so if you get stumped on something, people will help out.

enjoy!

Steve
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post #5 of 256 Old 01-22-2014, 01:28 PM - Thread Starter
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Thanks ss9001!  It just arrived an hour ago, and as soon as I get through with a pesky desktop build, I'm going to jump right in!  I'm upgrading from a 1021-k so I'm hoping they're very similar in operation.


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post #6 of 256 Old 01-22-2014, 08:38 PM
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Make sure you have the latest firmware, the website shows an update is out...

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post #7 of 256 Old 01-22-2014, 10:51 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JETninja View Post

Make sure you have the latest firmware, the website shows an update is out...

Thanks.  Was one of the first things done.  Adds the ability to stream Spotify if you have a premium subscription. Not much time to play with it so far, but immediately had remote problems which surprisingly seems to have fixed itself after an hour or so.  Some key presses would register with the unit, and others didn't.  Now they all seem to.  Also, problems with Pandora.  Seems every time I started the unit (trying to address the remote problems), the unit would default to Pandora.  After spending too much time keying this information in using the remote, it tells me I'm using a bad user name or password.  No problem, I don't need Pandora on my receiver.  I can Airplay it.

So, not a perfect start to my SC-71 adventure, but not bad.  New speakers should arrive next week, so then I'll have a much better idea.


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post #8 of 256 Old 01-24-2014, 09:53 PM - Thread Starter
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Pandora on the SC-71 -- Wow!

 

Getting Pandora working on the SC-71 was really a chore!  In fairness, I shouldn't single-out the SC-71.  Apparently it's stupid-hard to set up on ANY Pioneer receiver.

 

When you select Pandora on the remote, you are faced with two choice, either existing user or new user.  Since I'm a long-time user I selected existing and entered the CORRECT username and password.  Each time, the correct user name and password were rejected.  After wasting more time than I should have trying to get it to work, I find someone else here has already found the solution.  Followed their advice by logging into the receiver via wifi, and in 1 minute I'm listening to my channels on the SC-71.  Cool!

 

Here's the link if you're fighting your Pioneer receiver's Pandora setup

 

:http://www.avsforum.com/t/1484848/official-pioneer-sc-75-77-79-thread/120#post_23753749

schowtyme likes this.

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post #9 of 256 Old 01-27-2014, 06:52 PM
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I bought an SC-71 over the weekend. I'm upgrading from a 2005-vintage Harman Kardon AVR33 (55 watts x 5 channels, but high current). I'm running a trio of NHT SB3 bookshelf speakers up front, and NHT SuperZero XU's in the rear. Sub is unhooked for now.

First impressions:
1) Detail and imaging are MUCH improved compared to the Harman Kardon.
2) High end and midrange have really opened up.
3) MCACC works great for movies, but for 2 channel I disable it. MCACC sucked ALL of the bass out of my speakers. However, for movies I can FINALLY hear voices out of my center channel. They used to be so muffled with my HK.
4) Bass output is a little disappointing compared to the HK AVR335, even with MCACC disabled and +3 db on the tone controls. I was honestly a little disappointed at first.
5) Setup was a little painstaking and confusing. The manual is kind of vague.
6) I wasn't expecting it, but video quality on my sources has improved. Pleasant surprise.
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post #10 of 256 Old 01-27-2014, 07:12 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BUJonathan View Post

I bought an SC-71 over the weekend. I'm upgrading from a 2005-vintage Harman Kardon AVR33 (55 watts x 5 channels, but high current). I'm running a trio of NHT SB3 bookshelf speakers up front, and NHT SuperZero XU's in the rear. Sub is unhooked for now.

First impressions:
1) Detail and imaging are MUCH improved compared to the Harman Kardon.
2) High end and midrange have really opened up.
3) MCACC works great for movies, but for 2 channel I disable it. MCACC sucked ALL of the bass out of my speakers. However, for movies I can FINALLY hear voices out of my center channel. They used to be so muffled with my HK.
4) Bass output is a little disappointing compared to the HK AVR335, even with MCACC disabled and +3 db on the tone controls. I was honestly a little disappointed at first.
5) Setup was a little painstaking and confusing. The manual is kind of vague.
6) I wasn't expecting it, but video quality on my sources has improved. Pleasant surprise.

Was the bass response only from using Full Auto MCACC, or did you try the manual method, too?  I set up my existing speakers using Full Auto, and didn't bother tweaking them very much.  Like you, I thought the bass output was a little thin.  I'm expecting my new speakers tomorrow (Arx), and will spend more time trying to get them set up perfectly.


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post #11 of 256 Old 01-27-2014, 07:17 PM
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I used full auto MCACC since I was anxious to get it running and start using it. Maybe next weekend I'll play around with the MCACC some more.

For 2-channel listing, I turn the MCACC off by selecting a "blank" MCACC profile (M2 or M3). Bass response is improved, but still slightly less than my HK AVR335. This surprised me because I thought the Class D amps would be a great match for my power hungry NHT SB3's (85 db/w/m sensitivity). I will say the bass is much tighter, especially with MCACC active.

For multi-channel listening, I use the MCACC and very impressed with the clarity, positioning, and detail. I think my apartment has some room acoustic issues.

I'm curious if the Pioneer SC-71 is just very bass shy (and I would be happier with an AVR from someone else). Or, perhaps my expectations are just unreasonable (I should just shutup and enjoy it!!!!).
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post #12 of 256 Old 01-27-2014, 07:21 PM
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I forgot to ask, is it possible that Bass Management is filtering bass away from my mains? I have my fronts set to "Large", and subwoofer set to "no". MCACC selected a crossover frequency of 80 Hz, I dropped it down to 50 Hz since my sub isn't hooked up. It won't let me choose a crossover frequency below 50 Hz despite the fact that my sub is set to "no".

I assume in Pure Direct Mode all bass management would be disabled. However, ironically, Pure Direct has the lowest bass output.
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post #13 of 256 Old 01-27-2014, 08:08 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BUJonathan View Post

I used full auto MCACC since I was anxious to get it running and start using it. Maybe next weekend I'll play around with the MCACC some more.

For 2-channel listing, I turn the MCACC off by selecting a "blank" MCACC profile (M2 or M3). Bass response is improved, but still slightly less than my HK AVR335. This surprised me because I thought the Class D amps would be a great match for my power hungry NHT SB3's (85 db/w/m sensitivity). I will say the bass is much tighter, especially with MCACC active.

For multi-channel listening, I use the MCACC and very impressed with the clarity, positioning, and detail. I think my apartment has some room acoustic issues.

I'm curious if the Pioneer SC-71 is just very bass shy (and I would be happier with an AVR from someone else). Or, perhaps my expectations are just unreasonable (I should just shutup and enjoy it!!!!).

Are the other profiles "blank", or contain something other than optimum settings?  That's interesting that they might be "blank".  I'll look into that.  As you can see, I'm learning along with you.

 

I doubt if the Pioneer SC-71 is "bass shy".  I'm guessing that we haven't tweaked it to best settings, yet.  I probably won't be able to get around to it again until the weekend.  I'll spend the rest of the week breaking-in my new speakers and then MCACC and I are going to work it out.
 

Good luck on yours, and do keep us posted.


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post #14 of 256 Old 01-27-2014, 08:18 PM
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Originally Posted by mykereid View Post

Are the other profiles "blank", or contain something other than optimum settings?  That's interesting that they might be "blank".  I'll look into that.  As you can see, I'm learning along with you.

I doubt if the Pioneer SC-71 is "bass shy".  I'm guessing that we haven't tweaked it to best settings, yet.  I probably won't be able to get around to it again until the weekend.  I'll spend the rest of the week breaking-in my new speakers and then MCACC and I are going to work it out.

 
Good luck on yours, and do keep us posted.

By default all profiles will be blank until you run MCACC. I use M2 and M3 to try out different tone settings, but they don't have an MCACC profile.
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post #15 of 256 Old 01-28-2014, 07:39 AM
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This may be a bit off topic, but I have a question about my new Pioneer Elite SC-71.  I got it about three weeks ago.  I love everything about it, but I have been having a problem with my HDZone and Zone 2 playback.  I can get them to work, but for no apparent reason they regularly stop working.  Once playback stops, I check the mobile app to find out that the power to that particular zone has shut off.  I can always turn it back on and it works fine, but is seems to be a matter of time before it unexpectedly turns off again.  I really enjoy the multizone capabilities and will be using them a lot, so it would be great to get to the bottom of the problem.  Anyone have any suggestions?  Does it sound like I have some kind of power saving (or something else) setting turned on, or does it sound like a defect?  Thanks for your time!

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post #16 of 256 Old 01-28-2014, 08:54 AM
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Just bought the SC-71 a couple weeks ago. Hooked it up to Def Tech BP8060ST towers, 8060 center, and 8040 surrounds. Receiver really is a great receiver, lots of features. I'm still a rookie at all this so I'm trying to get the best setup. I don't have a separate sub right now and I'm not sure how to really set the universal crossover but I too feel the bass is a little low. But all I did was run MCACC and didnt tweak any other settings as I really don't know how to yet. I'm still learning about how to make adjustments. I was looking at the Denon x4000 but the price I got the SC-71 for was great. I also think the picture quality is better than before using this receiver and that is a huge feature for me too. If someone could give me advice on how to properly adjust/setup for my speakers, and to add a little bass it would be greatly appreciated. Glad we have an official thread now.
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post #17 of 256 Old 01-28-2014, 06:28 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jb0786 View Post
 

This may be a bit off topic, but I have a question about my new Pioneer Elite SC-71.  I got it about three weeks ago.  I love everything about it, but I have been having a problem with my HDZone and Zone 2 playback.  I can get them to work, but for no apparent reason they regularly stop working.  Once playback stops, I check the mobile app to find out that the power to that particular zone has shut off.  I can always turn it back on and it works fine, but is seems to be a matter of time before it unexpectedly turns off again.  I really enjoy the multizone capabilities and will be using them a lot, so it would be great to get to the bottom of the problem.  Anyone have any suggestions?  Does it sound like I have some kind of power saving (or something else) setting turned on, or does it sound like a defect?  Thanks for your time!

What's the source of your HDZONE signal?


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post #18 of 256 Old 01-28-2014, 06:33 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TSollecito View Post

Just bought the SC-71 a couple weeks ago. Hooked it up to Def Tech BP8060ST towers, 8060 center, and 8040 surrounds. Receiver really is a great receiver, lots of features. I'm still a rookie at all this so I'm trying to get the best setup. I don't have a separate sub right now and I'm not sure how to really set the universal crossover but I too feel the bass is a little low. But all I did was run MCACC and didnt tweak any other settings as I really don't know how to yet. I'm still learning about how to make adjustments. I was looking at the Denon x4000 but the price I got the SC-71 for was great. I also think the picture quality is better than before using this receiver and that is a huge feature for me too. If someone could give me advice on how to properly adjust/setup for my speakers, and to add a little bass it would be greatly appreciated. Glad we have an official thread now.

As I said before, we're all gonna learn about MCACC together.  Just a few minutes ago I subscribed to the 'Official MCACC' thread.  I can't imagine I'm going to read through the thousands of messages, but I'm sure I'll pick up a few tips.  Probably not a acceptable scientific sample, but at least three of us say the SC-71 seems to lack bass following the Full Auto MCACC.  I think the key is likely in the manual setup.  There you have a graphic EQ where it is likely you can get all the bass you want.  I'll definitely know more later in the week when I have time to setup a new set of (ARX) speakers.


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post #19 of 256 Old 01-28-2014, 06:36 PM - Thread Starter
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Copied from the original message in the 'Official MCACC' thread, posted by Lexicon1.  Thought it might be helpful for those of us trying to wrap our heads around a successful session with MCACC.

 

Work Flow:

1) Set Reciever to MCAAC preset 1 (M1). Now Run Auto MCAAC with mic in you listening position (I taped the mic to the top of a two foot long shoe horn, and stuck the shoe horn inbetween the couch cushions, so the mic is right where my ears are during listening).

2) Go into Manual Sp Setup and change the SP settings if neccessary(crossover to 100hz for me and speakers to small)

3) Now re-run Auto MCAAC but select custom, and then select Keep SP settings. You will also be given the options to have MCAAC calibrate for symmetry, all ch adjust and front align. You may save each calibration to seperate presets or run just one of them, or run two of them. You will see these options after you select Keep Sp settings.

4) Now you have an Auto MCAAC calibration(s) saved to M1 (or to multiple presets if you chose more than one EQ calibration type in previous step: symmetry, front align, and all ch adjust) (....note: you must select which preset you want Auto MCAAC to save calibration data to before you enter the audio setup menu.) Now go into Data Management--------> Data Copy and copy M1's data to as many other free presets as you like.

5) Now go into Manual MCAAC--->EQ Professional------>Reverb Measurement and get a reading on the the frequency response characteristics of your room. Be sure to select EQ OFF(standing waves not controlled for via MCAAC fliters) in the Reverb Measurement menu because you don't want the standing wave adjustements (EQ on) to be factored in to the room reverb measurments. Also make sure you haven't moved the mic.

6) After test tones are done, go into Manual MCAAC--->EQ Professional------>Reverb View , and you can analyze the frequency response of individual channels at various frequencies. Based upon that data, you would select the appropriate capture delay time for MCAAC to capture data during for the upcoming EQ calibration.

Change that time frame under Manual MCAAC--->EQ Professional------>Advanced EQ Setup to whatever you decide is the appropriate capture delay time ....(Pioneer recommends 30-50 ms, but they encourage you to analyze the data under reverb view first and refer to the advanced MCAAc software manual for analysis purposes). Note: the default capture delay time is than 80-160 ms.

7) Change to the appropriate MCAAC preset before you run the new advanced EQ calibration with the new capture time. You choose which preset, but I would recommend a preset that is a carbon copy of an auto MCAAC calibration so that you can do an A-B comparison between auto EQ and advanced EQ. Go under Manual MCAAC--->EQ Professional------>Advanced EQ Setup to start the advanced EQ calibration, and MCAAC should make a more accurate calibration since it will now capture sonic information sooner after the speakers output sound, and get a read on what the frequency response is of the speakers themselves, and not the speakers and all the reverb which accumulates as time passes. (Default capture time is 80-160 ms and thus collects more reverb and less true speaker reading)

Now you should have an accurate calibration. Also, now you can easily compare the Auto MCAAC EQ effects that are stored in a preset with the advanced EQ effects in other presets while listening to content with a simple button press on the remote. You could also juice the base a few db in a preset, and also compare running the base a bit hot to a flat calibration that you have in other presets.
 


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post #20 of 256 Old 01-28-2014, 06:57 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mykereid View Post

As I said before, we're all gonna learn about MCACC together.  Just a few minutes ago I subscribed to the 'Official MCACC' thread.  I can't imagine I'm going to read through the thousands of messages, but I'm sure I'll pick up a few tips.  Probably not a acceptable scientific sample, but at least three of us say the SC-71 seems to lack bass following the Full Auto MCACC.  I think the key is likely in the manual setup.  There you have a graphic EQ where it is likely you can get all the bass you want.  I'll definitely know more later in the week when I have time to setup a new set of (ARX) speakers.

I'm wondering if the lack of bass is an issue with Pioneer's Class D3 amps and/or my speakers are difficult to drive. My NHT SB3's are 86 dB sensitivity (many believe that number is optimistic) and their impedance drops down to ~4 ohms at lower frequencies. The reason I say this is because even when MCACC is deacativated (Pure Direct mode or selecting an empty MCACC profile) I still find that the SC-71 lacks bass when compared to Harman Kardon AVR335 which had a measily 55 watts x 5 or 75 watts x 2.

EDIT: adding +3 or 4 db of bass on the tone controls didn't help much :/
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post #21 of 256 Old 01-28-2014, 07:04 PM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by BUJonathan View Post


I'm wondering if the lack of bass is an issue with Pioneer's Class D3 amps and/or my speakers are difficult to drive. My NHT SB3's are 86 dB sensitivity (many believe that number is optimistic) and their impedance drops down to ~4 ohms at lower frequencies. The reason I say this is because even when MCACC is deacativated (Pure Direct mode or selecting an empty MCACC profile) I still find that the SC-71 lacks bass when compared to Harman Kardon AVR335 which had a measily 55 watts x 5 or 75 watts x 2.

EDIT: adding +3 or 4 db of bass on the tone controls didn't help much :/

I don't think the receiver is the problem.  I've heard of a number of people who have returned Pioneer receivers, thinking it was defective.  In actuality, they just didn't take the time to learn how to use the available features.  Of course, no one would be surprised to learn that I was wrong, but for now, that's my story and I'm sticking to it. :)


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post #22 of 256 Old 01-28-2014, 07:06 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mykereid View Post

I don't think the receiver is the problem.  I've heard of a number of people who have returned Pioneer receivers, thinking it was defective.  In actuality, they just didn't take the time to learn how to use the available features.  Of course, no one would be surprised to learn that I was wrong, but for now, that's my story and I'm sticking to it. smile.gif

I understand... but if it was just a case of the receiver being too complex, then the issue (lack of bass) would go away in Pure Direct mode. But, it doesn't.
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post #23 of 256 Old 01-28-2014, 07:23 PM
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I ran a different MCACC, kept sp settings, and ran all 3 eq types. Front Align sounds much better than symmetry did with my setup. Bass is much much better, and overall sound is a lot better. I even dialed back the sub knobs on the tower before calibrating. I didn't even get into the other settings as I'm still learning how to use them and what they do, but rerunning the full MCACC setup and trying all 3 modes changed the sound. I don't even know the exact reason but front align is supposed to highlight the mains especially of they are good speakers, so this makes sense to me especially since I'm not even running a separate sub. Hopefully we all can find a setting that works best. I doubt this receiver is the problem, in most cases anyway, and just needs the right setting to shine. I know I can probably even tweak mine more but just the way it is now I would be happy. I listened to music too and everything was better. Very happy
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post #24 of 256 Old 01-29-2014, 01:41 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BUJonathan View Post


I understand... but if it was just a case of the receiver being too complex, then the issue (lack of bass) would go away in Pure Direct mode. But, it doesn't.

Yeah, I would think that's true.


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post #25 of 256 Old 01-29-2014, 01:45 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TSollecito View Post

I ran a different MCACC, kept sp settings, and ran all 3 eq types. Front Align sounds much better than symmetry did with my setup. Bass is much much better, and overall sound is a lot better. I even dialed back the sub knobs on the tower before calibrating. I didn't even get into the other settings as I'm still learning how to use them and what they do, but rerunning the full MCACC setup and trying all 3 modes changed the sound. I don't even know the exact reason but front align is supposed to highlight the mains especially of they are good speakers, so this makes sense to me especially since I'm not even running a separate sub. Hopefully we all can find a setting that works best. I doubt this receiver is the problem, in most cases anyway, and just needs the right setting to shine. I know I can probably even tweak mine more but just the way it is now I would be happy. I listened to music too and everything was better. Very happy

After reading your message I went back and used "front align" settings, too.  I also changed in speaker settings from "large" to "small".  Just those few changes made a world of difference.  Most of my neighbors probably know now that I got new speakers and sub.  Just beginning to tweak with MCACC, but just this small change made a big difference.

 

Thanks for mentioning the change to "front align".  It does make a difference!


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post #26 of 256 Old 01-29-2014, 03:03 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TSollecito View Post

I ran a different MCACC, kept sp settings, and ran all 3 eq types. Front Align sounds much better than symmetry did with my setup. Bass is much much better, and overall sound is a lot better. I even dialed back the sub knobs on the tower before calibrating. I didn't even get into the other settings as I'm still learning how to use them and what they do, but rerunning the full MCACC setup and trying all 3 modes changed the sound. I don't even know the exact reason but front align is supposed to highlight the mains especially of they are good speakers, so this makes sense to me especially since I'm not even running a separate sub. Hopefully we all can find a setting that works best. I doubt this receiver is the problem, in most cases anyway, and just needs the right setting to shine. I know I can probably even tweak mine more but just the way it is now I would be happy. I listened to music too and everything was better. Very happy

Are your speakers set to "large" in speaker setup.  I'm gathering if you're not running a sub you want your mains to be set to large.  If you were running a sub you would set your mains to small, sending the lower register to the sub while maintaining the high end for your satellites.


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post #27 of 256 Old 01-29-2014, 04:35 PM - Thread Starter
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Hmm, MCACC set the crossover at 80hz, yet the sub manufacturer (SVS) recommends 100hz with my mains.  The struggle continues!! :)


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Well I'm glad you are enjoying the sound now. That setting helped me out too. I still probably have more to tweak but it'll be a while before I figure this all out. Plus each tweak will probably be a minor adjustment, at least I got the main sound to sound better/fuller.
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post #29 of 256 Old 01-30-2014, 04:37 PM
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Just listened to a bunch of music on Spotify on the SC-71 and this thing sounds awesome!!! There's stuff I never even heard in certain songs, bass is kickin now. Receiver is great, class D amps are powerful and run cool. Any issues were user error and bad settings.
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post #30 of 256 Old 01-30-2014, 05:14 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mykereid View Post
 

Yeah, I would think that's true.

BUJonathan:

 

After thinking about this a little more and reading the MCACC thread, I've changed my mind:)

 

If you're running Pure Direct, this means that MCACC is not engaged.  I think Pure Direct plays the file as it exists, so if the source file has a lot of bass, it will play that way.  If it's a "flat" source file, it will sound flat.  

 

I could be wrong, but that's my understanding after reading a few pages of the MCACC thread.


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