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post #1 of 8 Old 02-08-2016, 11:13 PM - Thread Starter
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Comparison of SC91, SR6010, RXA1050

Hello everybody,

I have gotten great advice from this forum over the years and I just wanted to share my own experience with three new mid-level receivers. Even though I have a dedicated and acoustically treated HT on the 2nd floor of the house, I was looking for a new receiver to replace the old one (Sony) in our family room setup downstairs. The receiver's main job was to drive a 5.0 speaker system consisting of a pair of Klipsch WF-35 mains, Klipsch WC-24 center, and a pair of
Def Tech ProMonitor 1000 surrounds. BTW, subwoofer(s) in the family room setup were not permitted (WAF). The living room has no acoustic treatments (also due to WAF) and is open to the kitchen ... a difficult room to get good sound. Now days we use the family room AV system more than 90% of the time due to the proximity to the kitchen. We only watch highly-rated new releases in the Home Theater room.

The new receiver budget was limited to under $1500. I went to best buy and bought these 3: Pioneer Elite SC-91, Marantz SR6010, and Yamaha RX-A1050. Bearing in mind that the comments below reflect my personal experience in my highly imperfect room and with my speakers, here is the verdict.

(a) Pioneer Elite SC-91 (Returned):
I got a good deal on an open box (paid 500) and tried this one first. From the start I had a difficult time setting up the networking and found the manual difficult to read/follow. Once I set it up, bi-amped the mains, and calibrated it via tripod/mic and MCACC for 1 central position I noted that the sound was a bit on the bright side particularly when moving a little off the central "sweet" spot. On the positive side there was plenty of power and the receiver casing was barely warm to the touch even after playing for a while at high volume. After a double feature of Mission Impossible and Spectre, I felt a little tired from listening to the sound. The next day I tried to setup the multi-position calibration only to find out that I could no longer access the calibration menu and also that the network connection was no longer functional. Searched the internet and found other people had reported similar problems with this receiver ... that was it ... pulled it out of the cabinet and in the trunk it went.

(b) Marantz SR6010 (Returned):
Paid full price for this one (1300). I thought the design of this unit was beautiful although the tiny screen in the central knob of the receiver does look a little weird. It was the lightest in weight of the 3 receivers I tested in my setup. I found the SR6010 had the best networking, the best remote, and the most clear setup instructions of the three. After plugging in my 5 speakers, bi-amping the mains and calibrating the sound with the tripod/mic in 8 different positions using Audyssey XT32 the sound improved quite a bit. I watched the 5th Element and Stargate ... the receiver casing was very warm, almost hot to the touch but at that point I thought ... I can just install a small fan on top of this ... the sound is good ... this could be a keeper. But I still had one more receiver to try out.

(c) Yamaha RX-A1050 (Kept):
Paid full price for this one also (1100). After plugging the 5 speakers, bi-amping the mains and calibrating the sound with the tripod/mic in 1 position using YPAO the sound was crystal clear and the area over which I was getting good sound was quite a bit wider than I expected even though I had calibrated at only the central position. I felt the Marantz had better sound down low in the bass frequencies but the Yamaha took it to the cleaners in the high frequencies. Music as well as the dialogue from the Yamaha was much cleaner and crisper than the Marantz and that was enough to declare the Yamaha as the winner of the three. Side benefits of the Yamaha (which did not sway me at all in declaring it the winner in my head-to-head) include a bunch of extra sound formats (DSP modes) and 200 in my pocket.

And this concludes my contribution to the forum. Thanks for reading and good sound to all.
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Last edited by Upgrader; 02-08-2016 at 11:24 PM.
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post #2 of 8 Old 02-09-2016, 04:20 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Upgrader View Post
Hello everybody,

I have gotten great advice from this forum over the years and I just wanted to share my own experience with three new mid-level receivers. Even though I have a dedicated and acoustically treated HT on the 2nd floor of the house, I was looking for a new receiver to replace the old one (Sony) in our family room setup downstairs. The receiver's main job was to drive a 5.0 speaker system consisting of a pair of Klipsch WF-35 mains, Klipsch WC-24 center, and a pair of
Def Tech ProMonitor 1000 surrounds. BTW, subwoofer(s) in the family room setup were not permitted (WAF). The living room has no acoustic treatments (also due to WAF) and is open to the kitchen ... a difficult room to get good sound. Now days we use the family room AV system more than 90% of the time due to the proximity to the kitchen. We only watch highly-rated new releases in the Home Theater room.

The new receiver budget was limited to under $1500. I went to best buy and bought these 3: Pioneer Elite SC-91, Marantz SR6010, and Yamaha RX-A1050. Bearing in mind that the comments below reflect my personal experience in my highly imperfect room and with my speakers, here is the verdict.

(a) Pioneer Elite SC-91 (Returned):
I got a good deal on an open box (paid 500) and tried this one first. From the start I had a difficult time setting up the networking and found the manual difficult to read/follow. Once I set it up, bi-amped the mains, and calibrated it via tripod/mic and MCACC for 1 central position I noted that the sound was a bit on the bright side particularly when moving a little off the central "sweet" spot. On the positive side there was plenty of power and the receiver casing was barely warm to the touch even after playing for a while at high volume. After a double feature of Mission Impossible and Spectre, I felt a little tired from listening to the sound. The next day I tried to setup the multi-position calibration only to find out that I could no longer access the calibration menu and also that the network connection was no longer functional. Searched the internet and found other people had reported similar problems with this receiver ... that was it ... pulled it out of the cabinet and in the trunk it went.

(b) Marantz SR6010 (Returned):
Paid full price for this one (1300). I thought the design of this unit was beautiful although the tiny screen in the central knob of the receiver does look a little weird. It was the lightest in weight of the 3 receivers I tested in my setup. I found the SR6010 had the best networking, the best remote, and the most clear setup instructions of the three. After plugging in my 5 speakers, bi-amping the mains and calibrating the sound with the tripod/mic in 8 different positions using Audyssey XT32 the sound improved quite a bit. I watched the 5th Element and Stargate ... the receiver casing was very warm, almost hot to the touch but at that point I thought ... I can just install a small fan on top of this ... the sound is good ... this could be a keeper. But I still had one more receiver to try out.

(c) Yamaha RX-A1050 (Kept):
Paid full price for this one also (1100). After plugging the 5 speakers, bi-amping the mains and calibrating the sound with the tripod/mic in 1 position using YPAO the sound was crystal clear and the area over which I was getting good sound was quite a bit wider than I expected even though I had calibrated at only the central position. I felt the Marantz had better sound down low in the bass frequencies but the Yamaha took it to the cleaners in the high frequencies. Music as well as the dialogue from the Yamaha was much cleaner and crisper than the Marantz and that was enough to declare the Yamaha as the winner of the three. Side benefits of the Yamaha (which did not sway me at all in declaring it the winner in my head-to-head) include a bunch of extra sound formats (DSP modes) and 200 in my pocket.

And this concludes my contribution to the forum. Thanks for reading and good sound to all.
Curious, on the Marantz,, after doing the audyssey. Did you then select the FLAT eq curve?

If not, the default eq curve is reference, which reduces the high end. As flat eq mode will keep the high end, giving a crisper sound..

Yamaha by default uses their FLAT setting, so it is in its crisp mode..

Just a thought to compare both units on equal ground. ☺️

Good review however.. Thanks.. 😊

Sent from my LG-H812 using Tapatalk
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post #3 of 8 Old 02-09-2016, 07:09 AM
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I had the same issue with my Pioneer SC-81. After calibration it was way to bright, hated it so I would always change it to Pure Direct and that sounded awesome, the way my speakers should sound. Figured out I needed to calibrate using font align and that did the trick.

Pioneer has really poor documentation and I think the full auto calibration sucks because I experienced the same issue as you did.
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post #4 of 8 Old 02-09-2016, 06:17 PM - Thread Starter
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Curious, on the Marantz,, after doing the audyssey. Did you then select the FLAT eq curve?
Good point, I left it in the default eq curve which as you say is the "reference". I really don't know if choosing "flat" would have made up for the huge difference in the crispiness of the vocals I experienced with the Yamaha.
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post #5 of 8 Old 02-09-2016, 06:32 PM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by microwiz View Post
I had the same issue with my Pioneer SC-81. After calibration it was way to bright, hated it so I would always change it to Pure Direct and that sounded awesome, the way my speakers should sound. Figured out I needed to calibrate using font align and that did the trick.

Pioneer has really poor documentation and I think the full auto calibration sucks because I experienced the same issue as you did.
Yeah I am sure if I had tons of time to figure out how to best dial-in each of these receivers the comparison might have been a lot closer but I wanted to get good sound in our oddly shaped family room without excessive tweaking and research.

It occurred to me that the easiest and quickest way to make the best purchase was to try each AVR in my own room setup because getting a demo of each receiver at a place such as BB/Magnolia made no sense as these "sales rooms" have different speakers and different room acoustics.
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post #6 of 8 Old 04-14-2016, 11:56 AM
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Hi,
I have one question for you:
If you play 5.1 in main zone, and you have second zone connected to SPEAKERS terminal or PREOUTS, switching second zone to same source - does main zone remain 5.1 and does zone 2 becomes downmixed stereo (left, center, right etc. channels) or only left and right channels (loosing the dialog and etc)? I would really appreciate the answer
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post #7 of 8 Old 04-14-2016, 12:10 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Upgrader View Post
Hello everybody,

I have gotten great advice from this forum over the years and I just wanted to share my own experience with three new mid-level receivers. Even though I have a dedicated and acoustically treated HT on the 2nd floor of the house, I was looking for a new receiver to replace the old one (Sony) in our family room setup downstairs. The receiver's main job was to drive a 5.0 speaker system consisting of a pair of Klipsch WF-35 mains, Klipsch WC-24 center, and a pair of
Def Tech ProMonitor 1000 surrounds. BTW, subwoofer(s) in the family room setup were not permitted (WAF). The living room has no acoustic treatments (also due to WAF) and is open to the kitchen ... a difficult room to get good sound. Now days we use the family room AV system more than 90% of the time due to the proximity to the kitchen. We only watch highly-rated new releases in the Home Theater room.

The new receiver budget was limited to under $1500. I went to best buy and bought these 3: Pioneer Elite SC-91, Marantz SR6010, and Yamaha RX-A1050. Bearing in mind that the comments below reflect my personal experience in my highly imperfect room and with my speakers, here is the verdict.

(a) Pioneer Elite SC-91 (Returned):
I got a good deal on an open box (paid 500) and tried this one first. From the start I had a difficult time setting up the networking and found the manual difficult to read/follow. Once I set it up, bi-amped the mains, and calibrated it via tripod/mic and MCACC for 1 central position I noted that the sound was a bit on the bright side particularly when moving a little off the central "sweet" spot. On the positive side there was plenty of power and the receiver casing was barely warm to the touch even after playing for a while at high volume. After a double feature of Mission Impossible and Spectre, I felt a little tired from listening to the sound. The next day I tried to setup the multi-position calibration only to find out that I could no longer access the calibration menu and also that the network connection was no longer functional. Searched the internet and found other people had reported similar problems with this receiver ... that was it ... pulled it out of the cabinet and in the trunk it went.

(b) Marantz SR6010 (Returned):
Paid full price for this one (1300). I thought the design of this unit was beautiful although the tiny screen in the central knob of the receiver does look a little weird. It was the lightest in weight of the 3 receivers I tested in my setup. I found the SR6010 had the best networking, the best remote, and the most clear setup instructions of the three. After plugging in my 5 speakers, bi-amping the mains and calibrating the sound with the tripod/mic in 8 different positions using Audyssey XT32 the sound improved quite a bit. I watched the 5th Element and Stargate ... the receiver casing was very warm, almost hot to the touch but at that point I thought ... I can just install a small fan on top of this ... the sound is good ... this could be a keeper. But I still had one more receiver to try out.

(c) Yamaha RX-A1050 (Kept):
Paid full price for this one also (1100). After plugging the 5 speakers, bi-amping the mains and calibrating the sound with the tripod/mic in 1 position using YPAO the sound was crystal clear and the area over which I was getting good sound was quite a bit wider than I expected even though I had calibrated at only the central position. I felt the Marantz had better sound down low in the bass frequencies but the Yamaha took it to the cleaners in the high frequencies. Music as well as the dialogue from the Yamaha was much cleaner and crisper than the Marantz and that was enough to declare the Yamaha as the winner of the three. Side benefits of the Yamaha (which did not sway me at all in declaring it the winner in my head-to-head) include a bunch of extra sound formats (DSP modes) and 200 in my pocket.

And this concludes my contribution to the forum. Thanks for reading and good sound to all.
Hi. Thanks for the review. I am in the market for one of the mentioned receivers. Your review did not mention the heat put out by the Yamaha. Can you please comment?

2 channel : Anthem integrated 2, Monitor Audio Silver 8, PSA S1500, Marantz SA8005
HT: Pioneer VSX-23THX, Polk TSI500, Monitor 40, CS10, PSA V1500, Onkyo C-S5VL
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post #8 of 8 Old 04-18-2016, 08:50 PM - Thread Starter
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Hi. Thanks for the review. I am in the market for one of the mentioned receivers. Your review did not mention the heat put out by the Yamaha. Can you please comment?
I would rank them like this:

Runs Cool: Pioneer SC
Slightly Warm: Yamaha RX
VERY Warm: Marantz SR (I'd use a cooling fan with this one)

I also own an Onkyo which is the warmest of all (it actually runs hot) and I have been using a USB-powered cooling fan for it since 2nd week of purchase.
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