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post #1 of 38 Old 07-17-2014, 07:42 AM - Thread Starter
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best avr/amp for b&w cm9's under $2k

I am about to move in to my first house and first thing i wanna do is put in the best sound system i can afford. Ive done research and went and listened to a few different speakers and have found the cm9's to be my choice.

one issue i have with the new house is the set up.my home theater will be in my living room as i do not have a basement. the living room however is one giant room open to the kitchen and dining room as well.i have wood floors and vaulted ceilings .i know thats not a good combination lol and the speaker set up along with the room will not be in symmetrical positions. Therefore i feel i will be needing an avr with some sort of room correction.

i will be running a 9.2/7.2 channel system

i will be listening to 60% music 40% movies.

what do you guys think of the new yamaha rxa 2040( $1700) or the yamaha rxa 3040 ( 2100) with the b&w's?

would i be better off spending roughly $800 on a decent avr and another $800 on an external amp? i am pretty new to all of this so i appreciate all help and criticism. just looking for the best set up. the only thing i am sure of at this point is how much i like sound of the cm9's.
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post #2 of 38 Old 07-17-2014, 08:49 AM
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Some say the cm9s are hard to drive and could benefit from external amps.

Those two receivers you mentioned have nearly identical power output, so you should compare features IMO. I personally like Yamaha, and like their high end models. They have loads of power in spite of what some people will say. I have my Z7 connected to B&W speakers with good results. I do have external amps, but feel they are unnecessary.

As you listen to music, it's not a bad thing to think about external power due to the higher continuous level of music vs. movies. I personally feel the Yamaha would sound great, but I can't prove that I guess a person could consider external amps as a kind of insurance against distortion due to power limiting.

One sort of affordable option would be to get the 2040 over the 3040 if you don't need those extra channels and then to buy an Emotiva XPA-3 for the front channels. Now you have more power for music, and did not spend a bunch of money on amps. You can comfortable drive the remaining channels with your Yamaha. That's what I did, as that made sense to me at the time.

Or you could look at an external amp, that while it does not have impressive looking power into 8 ohms, demonstrates very nice performance into lower impedances. Such as the Outlaw 7125 ( was on sale last time I checked.)

"But this one goes up to 11"
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post #3 of 38 Old 07-17-2014, 09:32 AM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by MichaelJHuman View Post
Some say the cm9s are hard to drive and could benefit from external amps.

Those two receivers you mentioned have nearly identical power output, so you should compare features IMO. I personally like Yamaha, and like their high end models. They have loads of power in spite of what some people will say. I have my Z7 connected to B&W speakers with good results. I do have external amps, but feel they are unnecessary.

As you listen to music, it's not a bad thing to think about external power due to the higher continuous level of music vs. movies. I personally feel the Yamaha would sound great, but I can't prove that I guess a person could consider external amps as a kind of insurance against distortion due to power limiting.

One sort of affordable option would be to get the 2040 over the 3040 if you don't need those extra channels and then to buy an Emotiva XPA-3 for the front channels. Now you have more power for music, and did not spend a bunch of money on amps. You can comfortable drive the remaining channels with your Yamaha. That's what I did, as that made sense to me at the time.

Or you could look at an external amp, that while it does not have impressive looking power into 8 ohms, demonstrates very nice performance into lower impedances. Such as the Outlaw 7125 ( was on sale last time I checked.)
This might be a dumb question so I'm sorry ahead of time.if I am to add the external amp such as the outlaw will it always power the fronts regardless of what source I am using.such as cds movies and video games..assuming all of my sources are ran through the avr.or will the external amp only play while I'm listening to music out of the fronts in 2.1 stereo
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post #4 of 38 Old 07-17-2014, 10:10 AM
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Usually AVRs that have pre outs, for connection to an amplifier, have a full set. That means you can connect whatever channels you want to it. Those channels you connected to the amplifier will always be powered by that amplifier ( you would probably not want to hook up speakers to the corresponding receiver speaker terminals - if you hook up the left channel pre out to an amp to power the left speaker, don't hook up anything to the receiver's left speaker output.)

I hope that answers your question

"But this one goes up to 11"
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post #5 of 38 Old 07-17-2014, 10:36 AM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by MichaelJHuman View Post
Usually AVRs that have pre outs, for connection to an amplifier, have a full set. That means you can connect whatever channels you want to it. Those channels you connected to the amplifier will always be powered by that amplifier ( you would probably not want to hook up speakers to the corresponding receiver speaker terminals - if you hook up the left channel pre out to an amp to power the left speaker, don't hook up anything to the receiver's left speaker output.)

I hope that answers your question
OK good.that is what I was hoping to here...As far as room corrections with mics and what not supplied with the avr, would it all work the same way with the addition of an amp?
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post #6 of 38 Old 07-17-2014, 10:41 AM
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Yep.

YPAO, on a Yamaha works the same way. It adjusts the channel levels so that each speaker plays at the same SPL. This also takes into account differences in amplifier gain.

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post #7 of 38 Old 07-17-2014, 12:38 PM
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Dedicted power is a good investment, I'd choose that over a flagship AVR. I've gone full pre-power, but a 3 power amp and a AVR is a good choice.

I never bothered go into higher end AVR, I can't see the point. If you spend £1000 on a AVR you may as well be looking into dedicated power. Home Theatre moves along, so a £1000-£2000 AVR from 5 years ago is out of date, and worth nothing. So it makes sense to get power then look at a lower end AVR so you don't lose so much money when you sell it. Pre-power costs more but it costs less in the long run.

My 15 year old amps are still usable, and now a service would bring them back to life. I've discarded several AVR because they're out of date, but my old pre-power is still usable and a high end unit

You save money, by spending more money, sort of thing. At least for Hi-Fi, they don't go out of date, and hold the value.
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post #8 of 38 Old 07-17-2014, 12:56 PM - Thread Starter
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say i go the route of emotiva xpa-3.What would be a good avr under $800 usd. total i really dont wanna spend over 2k and would like to be closer to $1500. i really am interested in a 7 channel with some sort of 4k upscale along with the ability to control the receiver through a smartphone or ipad.
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post #9 of 38 Old 07-17-2014, 01:04 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tanzillathrilla View Post
say i go the route of emotiva xpa-3.What would be a good avr under $800 usd. total i really dont wanna spend over 2k and would like to be closer to $1500. i really am interested in a 7 channel with some sort of 4k upscale along with the ability to control the receiver through a smartphone or ipad.
4k upscale is not important IMO. A 4k TV MUCH convert all incoming signals to it's resolution, there's no option to not do it. HDMI 1.4 supports 4k passthrough I think, but not 4k@60hz. 4k@60hz is supported by HDMI 2.0. It doesn't seem to critical to have 4k@60hz right now, but might matter some day.

Yamaha RX-V777 (not 100% sure on that model number) has preouts to support an amplifier. As does the RX-A840

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post #10 of 38 Old 07-17-2014, 01:16 PM
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Emotiva amps are great choice. I had them for my CM9's. Plenty of power and ran cool. As for AVR's, you can't really go wrong.

For your $800 AVR budget: 4K, 7.2, 2.0 HDMI, etc..

http://www.onkyousa.com/Products/mod...urce=prodClass
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post #11 of 38 Old 07-17-2014, 03:48 PM
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Dedicted power is a good investment, I'd choose that over a flagship AVR. I've gone full pre-power, but a 3 power amp and a AVR is a good choice.

I never bothered go into higher end AVR, I can't see the point. If you spend £1000 on a AVR you may as well be looking into dedicated power. Home Theatre moves along, so a £1000-£2000 AVR from 5 years ago is out of date, and worth nothing. So it makes sense to get power then look at a lower end AVR so you don't lose so much money when you sell it. Pre-power costs more but it costs less in the long run.

My 15 year old amps are still usable, and now a service would bring them back to life. I've discarded several AVR because they're out of date, but my old pre-power is still usable and a high end unit

You save money, by spending more money, sort of thing. At least for Hi-Fi, they don't go out of date, and hold the value.
Not sure what you are calling pre-power. Are you referring to a processor? What AVR or processor are you using?
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post #12 of 38 Old 07-17-2014, 10:57 PM
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post #13 of 38 Old 07-18-2014, 02:33 AM
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If you're going pre/pro, look at an Anthem MRX310....its room correction is second to none IMO.
Yamaha YPAO, meh. Denon/Marantz/etc Audyssey, yea, pretty good. Anthems own ARC, wow.

And judging by the description of your room, you're going to need the best room correction software you can find lol!


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Lexicon MC-8
Why would feel that it is more up to date than a 5 year old AVR?
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post #15 of 38 Old 07-18-2014, 05:52 AM
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Why would feel that it is more up to date than a 5 year old AVR?
Talking about sound quality. Why is a new AVR have superior sound quality to a older high end AV pre?

Does everything I want it to do. Lack of HDMI and onboard master audio, or room EQ isn't a big deal. Rather have that than a new low end AVR.

I could use a AVR as a pre, but finding one that has excellent sound quality bug free, and DSP like Logic 7.

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post #16 of 38 Old 07-18-2014, 08:32 AM - Thread Starter
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If you're going pre/pro, look at an Anthem MRX310....its room correction is second to none IMO.
Yamaha YPAO, meh. Denon/Marantz/etc Audyssey, yea, pretty good. Anthems own ARC, wow.

And judging by the description of your room, you're going to need the best room correction software you can find lol!
getting a receiver with good room correction software is very important to me but with my budget it seems i am going to have cut back somewhere...my biggest thing is sound quality. So im thinking i definitely need an separate amp to power my cm9's. and if am to buy an amp for say $800 i will not be able to afford that anthem receiver...perhaps i can look into denon or marantz as you say they have pretty good room correction software....

would it be logical for me to buy a used amp? you guys say that technology has not changed. if i can find a used amplifier for say $400 bucks i would be able to get a better avr.
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post #17 of 38 Old 07-18-2014, 09:21 PM
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You could just buy the receiver and see how that works....for now. Anthem's amplifier section is very robust.

And a used amplifier is an excellent choice. I picked up a used Parasound 3 channel for my system quite a few years ago
for a good price and its been working awesome so far.


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post #18 of 38 Old 07-18-2014, 09:30 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fatbottom View Post
Talking about sound quality. Why is a new AVR have superior sound quality to a older high end AV pre?

Does everything I want it to do. Lack of HDMI and onboard master audio, or room EQ isn't a big deal. Rather have that than a new low end AVR.

I could use a AVR as a pre, but finding one that has excellent sound quality bug free, and DSP like Logic 7.
I guess if you've never experienced it, then I can see why its no big deal.


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post #19 of 38 Old 07-19-2014, 01:24 AM
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I guess if you've never experienced it, then I can see why its no big deal.
I have master audio, through multi channel inputs. I have subwoofer EQ through antimode. HDMI switching through HDMI switcher. So it's up to date.

The Yamaha I have has YPAO. Certainly not fussed changing the Lexicon to downgrade to a AVR and just get room EQ.

Had a Denon av decoder, pretty medicore sound quality if you ask me, did like the Harmon sound.

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post #20 of 38 Old 07-19-2014, 06:01 PM
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Originally Posted by fatbottom View Post
I have master audio, through multi channel inputs. I have subwoofer EQ through antimode. HDMI switching through HDMI switcher. So it's up to date.

The Yamaha I have has YPAO. Certainly not fussed changing the Lexicon to downgrade to a AVR and just get room EQ.

Had a Denon av decoder, pretty medicore sound quality if you ask me, did like the Harmon sound.
I should have quoted just the comment on the "room eq - no big deal" portion.
YPAO and older Audyssey are nothing compared to MultEQXT32 and ARC.

Do yourself a favor and find a shop or buddy/co-worker that has a good setup with one of these room correction software packages.
IMO, I think you'd be surprised.


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post #21 of 38 Old 07-19-2014, 07:04 PM - Thread Starter
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i went back to my local best buy magnolia today to check out the cm9's once again as well the m1 for my surround. While i was there i talked to salesman about avr's and it turns out he already has the newer pioneer elite series as well as the yamaha rxa 2040.there newest model.from everything i have read online they were not be released until the fall. As you can imagine i am strongly leaning towards one of the two.I am still very interested in a external amplifier but considering i will be able to get these in a package deal with my b&w's along with a nice discount i think this would be the way to go for me...what do you guys think between the yamaha rxa 2040 and the comparable pioneer elite ..sc-82? ( might not be the exact model)
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post #22 of 38 Old 07-19-2014, 09:23 PM
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YPAO and older Audyssey are nothing compared to MultEQXT32 and ARC.
All forms of audyssey are old. They haven't been upgraded in years. XT32 is the best version of audyssey.
ARC probably is better but Anthem leaves out network/airplay playback? Ouch.

YPAO isn't as good but the Yamaha 2040 has manual eq including subwoofer out for personal tweaking that
audyssey products can only dream about. Setting up an external sub eq like the antimode is more work, but
the flexibility and results outdo the built in auto eq softwares.

The pioneer line still doesn't have much to offer in subwoofer eq. Price wise the 2040 falls between the 85 and 87 model.
With proper setup all those sound fantastic so don't skimp on playback options.
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post #23 of 38 Old 07-19-2014, 11:34 PM
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All forms of audyssey are old. They haven't been upgraded in years. XT32 is the best version of audyssey.
I thought MultEQ XT32 was the latest, I thought like 3/4 years old. Many more filters than the other versions and it EQ's 2 subs.

Quote:
ARC probably is better but Anthem leaves out network/airplay playback? Ouch.
Network /airplay playback? Meh, this is for HT and the Anthem receivers do it best with ARC IMO..

Quote:
YPAO isn't as good but the Yamaha 2040 has manual eq including subwoofer out for personal tweaking that
audyssey products can only dream about. Setting up an external sub eq like the antimode is more work, but
the flexibility and results outdo the built in auto eq softwares.
I've heard/read where the lower-rated Audyssey does not EQ the .1 channel very good, but XT32 does very well.
Years ago, you and I both know that sub EQ wasnt available in HT receivers but then 5/6 years ago, an external unit Antimode became available
to the consumer altho like you said, it was cumbersome. But what ARC does (cant speak for Audyssey since I do not own that) for the LFE channel
it is amazing. Like others, my sub (PB13 Ultra) was hot, boomy and shook the couch at any given moment. Awesome, or so I thought.
But after applying ARC, it smoothed out the bass to the point even my teenage son was wondering if this was how we should watch action movies.
It takes awhile (read: your ears) but now we appreciate it every time we fire the HT up. Unless something better comes along, I'll be sticking with Anthem for quite awhile.


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Apart from antimode, my home theatre has no REQ. Lexicon MC-8 doesn't have any form of it.

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post #25 of 38 Old 07-20-2014, 04:23 PM - Thread Starter
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yamaha also offers the rxa-840 which has all the bells and whistles i want with the rxa 2040 (hdmi 2.0,ypao, app control) but costs substantially less at $899. Correct me if I'm wrong but the main difference just being power it puts out. ( 100 watts per channel compared to 140 with the 2040).if can get this for $899 that leaves me room to get the emotiva xpa-3. I believe this setup will give me everything i am looking for.The latest and greatest features and surround formats along with all the power i could want to power my cm9s!
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post #26 of 38 Old 07-20-2014, 05:11 PM
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The 840/xpa3 combo will be more overall power than the 2040. The 2040 is stronger in zone 2
capabilities with extra binding posts and digital audio to zone 2. It also has better control of the
subwoofer eq with a 4 band parametric eq. Better auto bass eq is nice but not worth giving up
music streaming over the network. Especially nice on the patio. The 2040 will have atmos too.


I have the same room shape as tanz and almost the same subwoofer as Yosh. I measured my
svs pb12+ set in the corner and it plays almost flat to 19hz without any eq. XT32 in my denon 4311
barely improved it. Every room is different. Best to measure any room eq results for proper setup.
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post #27 of 38 Old 07-20-2014, 07:33 PM - Thread Starter
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The 840/xpa3 combo will be more overall power than the 2040. The 2040 is stronger in zone 2
capabilities with extra binding posts and digital audio to zone 2. It also has better control of the
subwoofer eq with a 4 band parametric eq. Better auto bass eq is nice but not worth giving up
music streaming over the network. Especially nice on the patio. The 2040 will have atmos too.


I have the same room shape as tanz and almost the same subwoofer as Yosh. I measured my
svs pb12+ set in the corner and it plays almost flat to 19hz without any eq. XT32 in my denon 4311
barely improved it. Every room is different. Best to measure any room eq results for proper setup.
it will be years before i even consider atmos, if ever. at least not until i buy a house with a dedicated home theater room. i have seen companies like pioneer offer dolby atmos specific speakers but well wait and see how all that works out. i will have speakers set up on my back deck from zone 2 but will only be using two speakers, so the extra binding posts won't be necessary.
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post #28 of 38 Old 07-21-2014, 09:28 AM
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I agree that atmos is mostly hype. It sure won't make my music sound better. I have several receivers
and the 840 level Yamaha is my main player. Sounds good and simple to run. The 840 stands above
anything else in one important way. 19 dedicated input buttons on the remote. Even the 2040 doesn't
have that many. That 840 can be stuffed full of hdmi with 8 hdmi buttons. A sweet model for sure.

The only advantage of the extra binding posts is the receiver will switch between 9.1 and 7.1+2 as needed.
I switch between 7.1 and 5.1 + zone 2 stereo all the time. Intelligent amp design. Other brands are adding that feature too.
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post #29 of 38 Old 07-21-2014, 09:38 AM
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I say unless you are completely sold on Dolby Atmos....go for the Denon 4520

it can be bought refurbished with factory warranty for $1299.00 delivered

http://www.accessories4less.com/make...-150wpc/1.html

I think its a heck of a lot more product that the Yamaha A2040

if you want crazy power and want to play at reference levels....then you will need a separate amp

Warren

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Rm 3 Samsung 51E8000 Yamaha A2010 Kef 2005.2 speaker system
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post #30 of 38 Old 07-21-2014, 10:56 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by turnne1 View Post
I say unless you are completely sold on Dolby Atmos....go for the Denon 4520

it can be bought refurbished with factory warranty for $1299.00 delivered

http://www.accessories4less.com/make...-150wpc/1.html

I think its a heck of a lot more product that the Yamaha A2040

if you want crazy power and want to play at reference levels....then you will need a separate amp

Warren
I had a 4520 for about 60 days. I heard absolutely no difference when connecting it to my 200 watt amp.
If your claim that the 4520 can't reach reference levels without an external amp please provide the measurements that you took before making such a statement.
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