Onkyo Receiver issues, is the NR818 reliable? - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 36 Old 03-22-2014, 11:50 PM - Thread Starter
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Do all Modern Onkyo receivers die after 2 years? It happened to my NR609. I have read reviews of the NR809 as well and the same thing happens with that receiver too. I am considering buying the NR818 which is the next year model of the NR809, does that receiver also have a short life span?
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post #2 of 36 Old 03-23-2014, 06:32 AM
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Read thru the 818 forum here & you'll find many owners that have no issues & many that do. It's seems to be hit n miss. Nevertheless, I bought one last month anyway for the XT32 option.

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post #3 of 36 Old 03-23-2014, 07:56 AM
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I have a 806 which died on me after two years which is the problematic documented HDMI issue. I spoke with a well known repair guy in my city and he sees less Yamaha's in his shop and recommends them instead.

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post #4 of 36 Old 03-23-2014, 10:33 AM
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Considering the 818's reliability problems appear to stem from inadequate heatsinks, adding a cheap cooling fan or two on top to pull hot air out of the unit would seemingly be sufficient to stave off HDMI problems, assuming you've got reasonable ventilation space in the first place. Onkyo also sells extended warranties on their site that, I believe, can be purchased anytime within the original factory warranty period. So, the only real reason to go with a Yamaha or any other brand with perceived greater reliability - which I've also had a couple dealers tell me Yamaha gets the fewest returns from what they've seen at their stores - is if either you wanted something the Yamaha has to offer or you don't want to risk a month or more of downtime, should the Onkyo fail prematurely.

From what I've heard, it sounds like Onkyo might have resolved the problem with the 929 (the 818's successor). It's said to run a lot cooler anyway.

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post #5 of 36 Old 03-23-2014, 11:10 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Chad Varnadore View Post

... adding a cheap cooling fan or two on top to pull hot air out of the unit would seemingly be sufficient to stave off HDMI problems...

 

If you have to modify a unit and add fans, it is a sign of an incompetently designed unit that one should simply not buy at all.  If they cannot get such a basic concept right as heat dissipation, on unit after unit, one wonders what other things they have screwed up.  There is absolutely no way I would buy an Onkyo receiver these days, as there are just too many complaints about them.  One can get something reliable (from Yamaha, for example) for a comparable price, so there is little point in buying garbage instead.

 

It is amazing how many people continue to buy things that are unreliable.  To me, that is one of the most important characteristics of the unit.  No feature or other aspect matters if the thing does not work.


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post #6 of 36 Old 03-23-2014, 11:39 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jack D Ripper View Post

If you have to modify a unit and add fans, it is a sign of an incompetently designed unit that one should simply not buy at all.  If they cannot get such a basic concept right as heat dissipation, on unit after unit, one wonders what other things they have screwed up.  There is absolutely no way I would buy an Onkyo receiver these days, as there are just too many complaints about them.  One can get something reliable (from Yamaha, for example) for a comparable price, so there is little point in buying garbage instead.

It is amazing how many people continue to buy things that are unreliable.  To me, that is one of the most important characteristics of the unit.  No feature or other aspect matters if the thing does not work.

I agree in principle, but sadly, such is not the world we live in. Vendors are practically forced into compromise to compete, or charge an arm and a leg for their products to make up for the lack of volume sales. Even overpriced boutique products are often compromised despite the price, like EAD basing their reference $3k dvd player on Panasonics very cheapest mass produced transport. Or you have to deal with compatability issues and slow to non-existent firmware updates, despite more problems than may be typical with name brands, because boutique brands are seldom, if ever used for testing.

I'm not defending them, but Onkyo does pack a lot in for the money, the 818 more than most, with THX, HQV, and Audyssey XT32, all for under $700 bucks (street) - no other AVR on the market can compete with that in the same price range - I'm not sure anyone is even trying at twice the price. At best Onkyo got caught with a poor choice of compromise, that's costing them, considering the reports I've seen of Onkyo agreeing to take care of the problem outside of the warranty period. But adding extra cooling fans isn't exactly uncommon for AVR owners. I've seen pictures of extra cooling fans added to the flagship Marantz and Denons, as a precautionary measure, streeting for almost three times as much as the Onkyo.

Others, including Yamaha, no doubt make compromises elsewhere. Recent criticism of Yamaha's power supplies come to mind, as well as reports of their products going into protection mode at extremely loud volumes, before other like-brands would. Developing their own proprietary processing, rather than licensing such from specialists with much more R&D into their given areas of expertise, like Audyssey, Marvell, etc., is no doubt fueled by monetary concerns. Not that it doesn't make sense to choose to put the money back into your own company rather than supporting someone elses product, but it's a compromise none-the-less, one that your customers are ultimately paying for, especially when years later you've done seemingly little to improve on that aspect of your design.

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post #7 of 36 Old 03-23-2014, 11:53 AM
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I had a 3007 die after two years (with fans on it all the time). They did send me a refurbed unit, I kept fans on it all the time, and added one blowing in to the two I already had pulling out. It died after 18months. Google "Onkyo HDMI board failure" or "Onkyo no sound" and decide for yourself if there's a problem.
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post #8 of 36 Old 03-23-2014, 12:12 PM
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Originally Posted by rprice54 View Post

I had a 3007 die after two years (with fans on it all the time). They did send me a refurbed unit, I kept fans on it all the time, and added one blowing in to the two I already had pulling out. It died after 18months. Google "Onkyo HDMI board failure" or "Onkyo no sound" and decide for yourself if there's a problem.

 

With an Onkyo, you should be using three of these:

 

http://www.amazon.com/B-Air-Airmovers-GP-1-ETL-Approved/dp/B005MXZ3MU/

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post #9 of 36 Old 03-23-2014, 06:17 PM
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Now that's funny.
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post #10 of 36 Old 03-24-2014, 06:13 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Chad Varnadore View Post


From what I've heard, it sounds like Onkyo might have resolved the problem with the 929 (the 818's successor). It's said to run a lot cooler anyway.

I have been using 818 for more than 16 months and never seen it becoming hot. Even at reference level it's just slightly warm; never hot. Sounds like I just got lucky.

BTW I use an open front/back rack with 150mm top clearance.
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post #11 of 36 Old 03-24-2014, 07:14 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jack D Ripper View Post

If you have to modify a unit and add fans, it is a sign of an incompetently designed unit that one should simply not buy at all.  If they cannot get such a basic concept right as heat dissipation, on unit after unit, one wonders what other things they have screwed up.  There is absolutely no way I would buy an Onkyo receiver these days, as there are just too many complaints about them.  One can get something reliable (from Yamaha, for example) for a comparable price, so there is little point in buying garbage instead.

It is amazing how many people continue to buy things that are unreliable.  To me, that is one of the most important characteristics of the unit.  No feature or other aspect matters if the thing does not work.

Exactly right.

Onkyo gives you a lot of features for the $, but they appear to use inferior components. Not worth it IMO. They've had problems for many years and I haven't seen anything that convinces me they've solved their problems.

Although, I don't think the main problem is heat dissipation. Rather it's using inefficient components. Too much of their power goes towards heat production. The problem may be solved by improved cooling, but the better solution is to use more efficient components.
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post #12 of 36 Old 03-24-2014, 02:19 PM
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Exactly right.

Onkyo gives you a lot of features for the $, but they appear to use inferior components. Not worth it IMO. They've had problems for many years and I haven't seen anything that convinces me they've solved their problems.

Although, I don't think the main problem is heat dissipation. Rather it's using inefficient components. Too much of their power goes towards heat production. The problem may be solved by improved cooling, but the better solution is to use more efficient components.

A better solution would be, to buy something other then Onkyo.
The HDMI/no sound problem, has been going on for at least 3 if not 4 years with their AVR's. No model other then their bottom end AVR's seem to be without these issues.

I am completely amazed, that people still buy Onkyo AVR's.

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post #13 of 36 Old 03-24-2014, 02:33 PM
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...
I am completely amazed, that people still buy Onkyo AVR's.

Alan

 

 

Me too.  I guess too many people are dazzled by being offered so many features for so little money, that they forget that there is a good reason why the other companies don't.


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I just purchased an 818 due to the price drop on Amazon. Just reading this last page, so I'm not up to speed on all of the issues with this receiver. Will I be more likely to bypass the major issues if I'm using the 818 as a pre/pro with an outboard amp? 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jack D Ripper View Post

If you have to modify a unit and add fans, it is a sign of an incompetently designed unit that one should simply not buy at all.  If they cannot get such a basic concept right as heat dissipation, on unit after unit, one wonders what other things they have screwed up.  There is absolutely no way I would buy an Onkyo receiver these days, as there are just too many complaints about them.  One can get something reliable (from Yamaha, for example) for a comparable price, so there is little point in buying garbage instead.

It is amazing how many people continue to buy things that are unreliable.  To me, that is one of the most important characteristics of the unit.  No feature or other aspect matters if the thing does not work.

I bought mine November 2012 , no problems what so ever till now , did i do something wrong ????
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In answer to your question ,nope you didn't do anything wrong. With that being said, it seems to be right around the two and one half ,to the three year mark when things start to go wrong with Onkyo's. Look at the time parameters for failure in the Onkyo failure thread.

I used mine as a pre/pro and just past that two and a half year mark, it just stopped producing sound. Worked perfectly up and until that point.

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post #17 of 36 Old 03-24-2014, 06:46 PM
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Me too.  I guess too many people are dazzled by being offered so many features for so little money, that they forget that there is a good reason why the other companies don't.

Considering the last two Denon's I bought at dealer prices indicated SRP was set at 100% markup, it doesn't seem unreasonable to assume a company like Onkyo might have to gamble on making up for lower profit margins, with higher volume sales, afterall they don't seem to have the heritage of Yamaha, Marantz, Denon, etc. Granted, such manufacturing philosophy typically also results in more corner cutting or at least poorer QC, but it's hardly an unusual business tac in any arena. With some companies, you're paying a premium just for their name, a hefty one at that - look at Harley Davidson, a $60 t-shirt, still made in Taiwan or a helmet that is sold by the manufacturer for $50, Harley has the manufacturer slap their name on it and they charge $150.

And lets not forget the ones with problems are always going to tend to be the most vocal. The majority of those enjoying their purchase without incident won't be heard from until they get the urge to upgrade again. I'm seriously not meaning to defend Onkyo. I've never owned one of their products. At one time I even had the impression they were just trying to be a Denon clone. It's clear that potential buyers should be made aware of the risks. But it seems you have an ax to grind, justifiably or not.

Bottom line: If my budget were limited as such that I couldn't afford something comparable in features, but more reliable in reputation, if not in actual build or QC (Denon and Pioneer seem to be having their share of problems lately as well, as does QC and/or build drop significantly when you get into lower price ranges with probably every major brand), I'd certainly take my chances on an 818, add some extra cooling, maybe tack on an extended warranty if I still felt the need in two years when the factory warranty was about to expire. Again, I've never owned one, but I can't think of anything in the 600-700 dollar price range that would appear to compete on the same level. For an HT purposed receiver that seems mighty hard to beat to me. I haven't heard any criticism of their performance, so I have to assume it's only their reliability that's in question. In which case, gambling on a potentially higher quality performer seems worth the risk for my money, also keeping in mind that the 818 is technically a 1000-1200 dollar AVR, it's last years model that Onkyo may be resorting to higher discounting than they normally would in an effort to clear them out, possibly a result of their bad rep their brand has been getting. And still the 818 is rated 4 stars on amazon by customers, where Denon's flagship is only rated 3 stars (also a lot of problems, early on at least, despite costing over 4x the current street price).

It's even more discouraging when one's replacement dies too. Unfortunately, with most companies, replacements are usually refurbs, products that have already proven problematic. I think many manufacturers fail to adequately or even competently diagnose repairs these days, with an apparent trend, in the ever more complicated world of electronics, to blow off most returns as operator error.

Quote:
Originally Posted by ayertonsenna View Post

I just purchased an 818 due to the price drop on Amazon. Just reading this last page, so I'm not up to speed on all of the issues with this receiver. Will I be more likely to bypass the major issues if I'm using the 818 as a pre/pro with an outboard amp? 

50/50. It's the processing circuitry that seems to generate the most heat. The internal amps are still on, even if not being driven. Though not using them will cut down on the heat to a degree, in my experience using a Denon 3808 as a prepro, it's not that much - no real guarantee of how well the Onkyo might compare doing the same.

Did you buy it from amazon or from Onecall selling through amazon? If the later, you're likely to get a better price buying from Onecall direct. They'll usually cut you a better deal over the phone than what they can advertise. That may not be the case here, but it's worth a shot.

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post #18 of 36 Old 03-25-2014, 10:17 AM
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Originally Posted by Cruzin View Post

In answer to your question ,nope you didn't do anything wrong. With that being said, it seems to be right around the two and one half ,to the three year mark when things start to go wrong with Onkyo's. Look at the time parameters for failure in the Onkyo failure thread.

I used mine as a pre/pro and just past that two and a half year mark, it just stopped producing sound. Worked perfectly up and until that point.

Alan

From what i read with most of the complains regarding the 818 were the lack of place to dissipate heat ( one of the reasons a lot of guys talking about fans to remove heat ) . One thing i have to agree there's a lot of problems regarding one model only but till now i never experienced none of the problems ( the pure 24fps also comes to mind ) or maybe ( knock on wood here ) i din't get a lemon !!
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Well, Onkyo has had a run of issues...
1. failing HDMI boards
2. failing IDE connectors
3. not "washing" display boards causing display failures
4. amps dying

So bang for the buck is more like rolling dice, with the odds against you...
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jon S View Post

Well, Onkyo has had a run of issues...
1. failing HDMI boards
2. failing IDE connectors
3. not "washing" display boards causing display failures
4. amps dying

So bang for the buck is more like rolling dice, with the odds against you...

 

The interesting thing is that there are people who defend them anyway.  Just read the posts above and you will see this in action.  Apparently, making unreliable junk is not a serious criticism of them, according to some people.  I expect you will likely see yet another example in a reply to this post, if you wait a short while.

 

Some people seem to feel that it is strange that someone wants something that is reliable.  I find it strange that anyone wants anything that isn't reliable.

 

 

It is really too bad that they have decided to make junk.  I have an old Integra (i.e., a higher end Onkyo) CD changer that I like very much.  It is connected to my main 2 channel system, and I use it frequently.  It is many years old, and works flawlessly.  But there is no way I would buy an Onkyo home theater receiver these days.  Nor, for that matter, an Onkyo CD changer either, as I have read many complaints about their reliability, too.  It seems that Onkyo no longer cares to make gear that is reliable and lasts, though they used to make such gear.


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post #21 of 36 Old 03-25-2014, 02:08 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by almadacr View Post

From what i read with most of the complains regarding the 818 were the lack of place to dissipate heat ( one of the reasons a lot of guys talking about fans to remove heat ) . One thing i have to agree there's a lot of problems regarding one model only but till now i never experienced none of the problems ( the pure 24fps also comes to mind ) or maybe ( knock on wood here ) i din't get a lemon !!

It's not just one model. Far from it.

Look at this thread.

http://www.avsforum.com/t/1339186/the-official-onkyo-rc270-nr708-nr808-nr1008-nr5008-integra-80-2-failure-thread

It mentions 6 different models and that 's an older thread. More models now have the same problem.


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Originally Posted by Cruzin View Post

It's not just one model. Far from it.

Look at this thread.

http://www.avsforum.com/t/1339186/the-official-onkyo-rc270-nr708-nr808-nr1008-nr5008-integra-80-2-failure-thread

It mentions 6 different models and that 's an older thread. More models now have the same problem.


Alan

I mentioned "this" model since it's what the OP asked i was aware of other problems with other models wink.gif I had several brands of receivers and only one gave me 1 problem , the back USB in back died .
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Understood smile.gif

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post #24 of 36 Old 03-25-2014, 05:31 PM
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The interesting thing is that there are people who defend them anyway.  Just read the posts above and you will see this in action.  Apparently, making unreliable junk is not a serious criticism of them, according to some people.  I expect you will likely see yet another example in a reply to this post, if you wait a short while.

Some people seem to feel that it is strange that someone wants something that is reliable.  I find it strange that anyone wants anything that isn't reliable.


It is really too bad that they have decided to make junk.  I have an old Integra (i.e., a higher end Onkyo) CD changer that I like very much.  It is connected to my main 2 channel system, and I use it frequently.  It is many years old, and works flawlessly.  But there is no way I would buy an Onkyo home theater receiver these days.  Nor, for that matter, an Onkyo CD changer either, as I have read many complaints about their reliability, too.  It seems that Onkyo no longer cares to make gear that is reliable and lasts, though they used to make such gear.

I was just trying to offer some perspective. Nobody has inferred turning a blind eye or that Onkyo shouldn't be held accountable. Though, it seems to me they're doing that all by themselves. There are still viable reasons to chose something like the 818, despite it's problems. But - and this applies to any mass produced product of the modern age - if you only base your decision on those who've had problems, you're not going to have much of a selection. And most of what's left, doesn't have 100 complaints against it only because nobody has bought it yet.

One thing I have learned over the years is it's prudent to take advice of those with either plainly limited experience (such not being the case where you're concerned), you know the type: "This is my first TV and it's just the best thing I've ever seen, anywhere! It looks even better than real life!", or those with a spoken generalized aversion/bias against, who don't seem to have the capacity of objectivity on the subject, like "I knew this movie was probably going to be bad. Then I found out so and so was in it and that just proved it beyond a shadow of tha doubt." I get the sense you might fit in there in this case. If I'm wrong, I appologize in advance. But that's how I've interpretted your posts in this thread, even where you playing class clown.

For the record, I just bought a Yamaha, paid over twice for it what I could have gotten an 818 for, bought it largely with reliability in mind in fact, but I also liked the sound I heard of it's younger sibling in a store as well as the specs. Now I'm starting to hope it wasn't any of your advice that swayed me down that road though.

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post #25 of 36 Old 03-25-2014, 05:45 PM
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...
For the record, I just bought a Yamaha, paid over twice for it what I could have gotten an 818 for, bought it largely with reliability in mind in fact, but I also liked the sound I heard of it's younger sibling in a store as well as the specs. Now I'm starting to hope it wasn't any of your advice that swayed me down that road though.

It is okay with me if you want to return your Yamaha and exchange it for an 818. That way, you can be sure that you will not have a receiver that I recommended, since that idea seems to bother you.

God willing, we will prevail in peace and freedom from fear and in true health through the purity and essence of our natural fluids. God bless you all.
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post #26 of 36 Old 03-25-2014, 08:06 PM
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There are more then a few former Onkyo owners who, are trying very hard to save fellow AVS members , the pain and frustration of purchasing a product that is not reliable.

Guess that old saying is true. " You can lead a horse to water, but you can't make him drink"

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post #27 of 36 Old 03-25-2014, 10:33 PM
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It is okay with me if you want to return your Yamaha and exchange it for an 818. That way, you can be sure that you will not have a receiver that I recommended, since that idea seems to bother you.

That's not what I said, is it. So far, I'm very happy with the Yamaha, thank you. But, I imagine I'd have been satisfied with the Onkyo too, for as long as it remains working, assuming it has a problem at all. But there's no guarantee my Yamaha won't break down the day after the warranty expires. At least with the 818 being such a know problem, Onkyo appears to be taking care of their customers beyond the warranty period - not that I'd ever trust any company, absolutely.

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There are more then a few former Onkyo owners who, are trying very hard to save fellow AVS members , the pain and frustration of purchasing a product that is not reliable.

Guess that old saying is true. " You can lead a horse to water, but you can't make him drink"

Alan

People who go out of their way "trying very hard" to convince others not to think for themselves, saying to "trust them" because of what they've read or their own isolated experiences, as if they've acquired some manner of omniscience on a particular subject or even for everything they have to say, always worries me, especially the ones using trite cliches as cheap shots in place of mature intellectual debate - too much emotion, not enough objective or even rational judgement, sometimes.

Nobody is advocating anyone taking a blind eye, except the apparent Onkyo haters. And I get it. Everybody hates the inconvenience and headache of having their down time turned into more work or thwarted because of a defective component sitting in someones shop waiting on parts to come back in stock. I just spent a year trying to diagnose a projector problem for Mitsubishi, myself, when their 2nd tier customer support proved useless, if not utterly inept. Just because I had a very bad experience, doesn't mean I feel entitled, much less obligated to tell everyone to avoid them like the plague. But then, maybe that's just the projector market I'm used to, as many models from almost every major brand seems to have more than it's share of problems sometimes. Such is the price of competition in a still struggling economy. So far, while I've been very happy with the actual product, frankly, Yamahas customer support leaves something to be desired as well. I've been given so much conflicting, even flat out innaccurate information from their agents while researching our new AVR, I only pray their phone techs have absolutely nothing to do with the engineering that goes into their designs.

All I'm saying is that for some, the 818 might be a gamble worth taking, consider all it packs in and the clearance prices that are available. It's a gample I almost did take, based on the overabundance of praise I was seeing elsewhere for the Onkyo's features and performance, despite it's HDMI problems, until the Yamaha 3030 and Marantz 7008 caught my interest. Again, the 818 is even better reviewed on amazon than Denon's flagship. How is that possible, this many months after the model was discontinued, if they're all failing prematurely? Sorry, but I prefer the preponderance of evidence - to use a criminal justice term - over a relatively few suspiciously loud eye-witnesses who seem to have an agenda of their own.
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post #28 of 36 Old 03-26-2014, 07:04 AM
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Maybe you missed the posts(yes multiple) were repair techs have been asked which AVR's have the least breakdowns.Look in the other Onkyo failure thread that's currently active.

Of course,I'm sure you didnt base what you purchased on that,after all, you dont listen to people who actually have experience with said product . Considering you dont have any experience what so ever , as an owner of the current line of Onkyo products, I would have to think you just like to argue ,rather then listen to those who have.

In addition to that,when push came to shove,you spent your own money on another brand ,rather then taking a chance on an Onkyo.

It would seem your validity is leaking my friend.

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post #29 of 36 Old 03-26-2014, 07:31 AM
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Maybe you missed the posts(yes multiple) were repair techs have been asked which AVR's have the least breakdowns.Look in the other Onkyo failure thread that's currently active.

Of course,I'm sure you didnt base what you purchased on that,after all, you dont listen to people who actually have experience with said product . Considering you dont have any , as an owner of the current line of Onkyo products, I would have to think you just like to argue ,rather then listen to those who have.

Alan

Greetings,

I have known Chad for years and don't find him to be the needlessly argumentative type. As for the context of this thread here is my input, I currently own an 818 and have stopped recommending Onkyo products.

The reason is that I purchased the 818 was to use in my living room system and as a backup in the event I needed it for temporary use in my primary system. I picked it up in June 2012 after the 6 month old Onkyo PR-SC5508 pre/pro I was using in my primary system at the time failed due to the well documented IDE cable/random input switching problem and had to be sent in for service. Once the 5508 was back from service I moved the 818 to the living room system. After reports started coming in that the HDMI boards on the xx08 line starting failing I decided to sell the 5508 as I simply couldn't continue to use it in my review system due to the ticking time bomb feeling that arose every time I powered it up.

Fast forward to December 2013 and I power on the 818 to find that there is picture but no sound. Recycling the power restored normal operation. This problem continued for two weeks until power cycling no longer worked. By that time I had already done some checking here and found that this was in fact the handwriting on the wall for what was to come. I want to point out that the 818 saw very limited use (once or twice a month) and never ran warm. I contacted Onkyo and the unit was sent in for service. It was gone for about three weeks and has performed fine since its return in late January.

I can't speak for others and won't but as far as I'm concerned the bang for the buck allure of Onkyo hardware simply isn't enough. The history of problematic issues related to reliability is glaring and in my opinion not worth it.

For those that have never had a problem with their Onkyo gear I say good for you and I hope that continues to be the case.

Thanks for listening.

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post #30 of 36 Old 03-26-2014, 07:49 AM
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Thank you for posting Ralph.

Reading others experience with products is far more productive , then reading posts from those who have none.

Alan

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