Official Digital Kenwood VRS 7100 thread. - AVS Forum
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Receivers, Amps, and Processors > Official Digital Kenwood VRS 7100 thread.
Alan Gouger's Avatar Alan Gouger 07:28 PM 07-03-2004
Ok guys chime in here if you own this receiver.

At first I had mixed feelings about this receiver and I switched to the H/K 2005 that had more rated power but I found it to laid back and if had a few quirks I could not live with so I went back to the 7100 and Im very happy.

This thing is very dynamic and clean. No heat and very portable. It looks a little cheesy but it really performs. Im sure it is on par with the Panasonic.

Anyone know if this offers OSD through any of the video outputs?

KLee's Avatar KLee 12:57 PM 07-05-2004
BTW, Kenwood will be bringing out the VRS 8100 soon:

The VRS N8100 adds:

1-The ability play streaming audio and video files over a computer network

2-Display photo files stored on networked PCs or on digital memory cards

3-Play one soundtrack over speakers while playing another over headphones

4-Ethernet jack on the rear panel

5-PCMCIA card slot on the front panel that can accept flash memory

The VRS N8100 is due out in august and has an $800 MSRP

Earz's Avatar Earz 02:49 PM 07-05-2004
Not trying to downplay the added features of the 8100 over the 7100, but the power and specs are exactly the same.
So for that much more money, the buyer better be certain they can use the extra features.

The 7100 sells for les than 400.00 street.
gmb35's Avatar gmb35 06:03 PM 07-05-2004
hello how good is the kenwood as opposed to the harmon kardon reeivers. Ihave and old kenwood stage 3 pre-amp and would like to upgrade to an newer model receiver. I like the price on the 7100 within my budget.
BobL's Avatar BobL 06:32 AM 07-06-2004
Does the Kenwood offer an adjustable crossover? If it is fixed, then at what frequency? I couldn't find the manual on Kenwood's website.

Alan Gouger's Avatar Alan Gouger 09:38 AM 07-06-2004

The Kenwood offers the typical "Sub on" "Sub off" and a selection of "Normal" & "Large" for your speakers but thats it.
No mention or user selection for cross over points


I also have the HK 2005 and I clearly prefer the Kenwood. The Kenwood performs as if it has more power and it sounds cleaner.
The HK does offer bass management with a choice of cross over points but regardless it sounded boxy in my system and I preferred it with the tone controls on with the treble boosted. Something I do not like doing as it robs you of power. The Kenwood sounds very neutral and dynamic without the need for additional EQ.

I do think the Panasonic offer more flexibility than the Kenwood for the same money. I want to try one of those as well.
DBryant's Avatar DBryant 10:15 AM 07-06-2004
From reading the reviews it seems these are geared for gamers as well. mentions have specific remote codes and features for video game set-ups.

Now what we need is a comparison of the Kenwood and panasonic receivers.
beowulf7's Avatar beowulf7 10:33 AM 07-06-2004
Alan, I didn't think the H/K DPR 2005 would be that bad. (BTW, note that this Kenwood receiver is officially listed as "VRS-7100" - with a dash. It seems picky, but the lack of dash in this thread's title might affect its searchability.)

I set up this Kenwood receiver for my parents. I think it sounds pretty good, but my father thought it doesn't look as "sleek" as the Panasonic SA-XR45S receiver we had earlier this year . But I think it looks just fine.

The worst thing about this Kenwood is that it uses those cheap spring clips for speaker connectors. It's almost impossible to fit 12-ga. speaker wires in there. I'm thinking of buying banana plugs or flex pins. Any recommendations?

I didn't try to play w/ OSD. It's not really necessary since the display on the receiver itself is pretty detailed. One thing that is frustrating about the receiver is that when watching some DVDs, it'll let me select "DPLIIx Music", but not "DPLIIx Movie".
beowulf7's Avatar beowulf7 10:35 AM 07-06-2004
Here is Kenwood's official Web page for its VRS-7100 receiver.
temp101's Avatar temp101 10:53 AM 07-06-2004
Originally posted by beowulf7

The worst thing about this Kenwood is that it uses those cheap spring clips for speaker connectors.

It also has NO multi-channel inputs. So SACD and Dvd-Audio is worthless with this receiver. What a shame...
KLee's Avatar KLee 11:25 AM 07-06-2004
Does the HK2005 use spring clips or bannana plugs?
Alan Gouger's Avatar Alan Gouger 12:17 PM 07-06-2004
Does the HK2005 use spring clips or bannana plugs?

Bannana plugs.
BobL's Avatar BobL 12:32 PM 07-06-2004
Thanks Alan,

I ordered one to give it a try.

SoftwireEngineer's Avatar SoftwireEngineer 02:36 PM 07-06-2004
okay, I dont want to be a spoilsport (especially bother people like beowulf, alan). I think between the Kenwood and the Panny, I suspect the Panny would beat it, atleast in stereo. Mainly because, you can easily biamp with the Panny and also you can use an aftermarket power cord with it. The chip set in Kenwood seems the same or similar to the one in the Panny going by the specs (100 W into 6Ohm rating). The 130w rating is when you overdrive it at 10% distortion. Ofcourse, I have not heard the Kenwood and it is quite possible Kenwood people might have executed a better implementation than Panny with the same chipsets.
It is time somebody made a direct comparision of the Panny vs Kenwood.
beowulf7's Avatar beowulf7 10:33 PM 07-06-2004
I'd also be interested in seeing a head-to-head comparison between the Kenwood VRS-7100 and Panasonic SA-XR70 (once it's released). Maybe in a few months, a magazine will compare these new digi-amp'ed receivers.
BobL's Avatar BobL 09:13 PM 07-10-2004
First thoughts on the 7100. I wanted to set it up immediately but getting everything in and out of the equipment closet to put it into the system would have been a pain. And I wanted to hear it now so I came up with a shootout for my wife and I. She was nice enough to appease me!

So out came my monitor speakers that are connected to my keyboard system (JBL 4208) and the amp an Alesis RA-100, I also grabbed a HK 3480 stereo receiver, my old DVD player on the kids TV, a Panasonic RV-80 (same DAC's as RP-91). Time to do a little stereo listening test.

Before I get into our opinions let me comment on the 7100 itself. It is not a bad looking unit (my wife liked it) but definitely not high end. Very acceptable for looks. It is small about the size of a regular DVD player not he slim ones. But the knobs and buttons have a CHEAP feel when using them. No where near the build quality of the HK, Denon, Pioneer, Yamaha or Sherwood receivers I'm familiar with. I was surprised it had component switching for 2 devices but no S-video inputs/ouputs. The speaker connections are TERRIBLE!!! I was going to use Liberty THX 12 guage for the shootout but switched to Liberty's 14 guage and that was still a pain to put in these clips. If there was one thing I would fix with this unit that would be it. Although, I think it would be tough to add good binding posts given the size of the receiver. The remote seems decent but I use a universal remote so this would be a small concern for me. Anyway, onto the review.

With everything hooked up I used my RTA to match the SPL level on each of the receivers and the amp. My wife did not know which unit was playing and I made her leave the room while I switched speaker cables during testing. We listened to three songs on each unit that we were both familiar with. They were: Luther Vandross - If I didn't know better, Diana Krall - S'Wonderful and Bonnie Raitt - Something to talk about. I think this would be about all my wife would tolerate.


She liked the Kenwood the best! She thought it was cleaner, crisper and more detailed than the others. On the Diana Krall she would have given the edge to the Alesis. She said that the Kenwood and the Alesis were close but gave the edge to the Kenwood. Remember she didn't know which was which while listening, I told her what A, B, and C were afterwards.

My thoughts were pretty much the same I thought Diana's vocals were more realistic and natural on the Alesis. I felt that the Kenwood had tighter bass, more detailed highs and the was most dynamic. The HK was definietely warmer and more laid back than the other two. Paired with a different set of speakers could yield different results.

This was only a mini shootout so I could get a quick listen. Over the next few days I'll have it in my rack with the Triad Bronze system. Hopefully, on Wednesday night I'll have a little time to do some comparisons against a B&K ref 50 with Rotel 1075 amp on Paradigm Signature system. I'll let you know my thoughts then.

beowulf7's Avatar beowulf7 09:39 PM 07-10-2004
Bob, thanks for that review. You probably had a hell of a wire rat nest w/ all those cables coming in and out of those receivers, all tangled up as you had to switch them.

You're right that the speaker connectors on the Kenwood flat-out suck. We have 12-ga. speaker wires and I had to try like mad to squeeze some of the copper strands in there. I think I'm going to get a flex pin (a.k.a. flex-pin) adapter. At one point, the rear surround speaker went dead. Sure enough, the + speaker cable slipped out from the receiver.

The receiver looks nice, but my father thinks the SA-XR45 we once had looked "sleeker". The volume knob is pretty hard to turn. Also, the remote control is a little busy, but one can eventually get the hang of it.

One thing I noticed is that on certain movies or certain parts of a DVD, I can choose DPLIIx Music, but not DPLIIx Movie. What gives? The sound quality and loudness met our expectations. The next time I go to my parents' house, I'll bring my Matrix DVD so that I can play Chapter 29 (elevator shootout).
Alex solomon's Avatar Alex solomon 09:12 AM 07-13-2004
Alan, I have posted this question in another thread but got no answer. Since you own this receiver can you please tell me what type of speaker connection does it have? If it is spring clips what size pins should I get?Thanks..
Alex solomon's Avatar Alex solomon 09:15 AM 07-13-2004
Found out that the speaker connection is spring clip from beowulf7 post above. Still want to know the size of the pin I should get.
BobL's Avatar BobL 09:28 AM 07-13-2004
I had 12 gauge wiring already in place so I used these with good results.

You can also find various models at parts express but it wasn't worth waiting.

hope this helps.

Alex solomon's Avatar Alex solomon 09:36 AM 07-13-2004
Thanks for the link Bob. I actually wanted to know the size of pin the receiver accepts so that I can choose between different brands. Is this a standard size for all pins? (2mm dia. x 13mm long)
beowulf7's Avatar beowulf7 11:09 AM 07-13-2004
Originally posted by BobL
I had 12 gauge wiring already in place so I used these with good results.

You can also find various models at parts express but it wasn't worth waiting.

hope this helps.


Thanks, that helps a lot.

That RS product looks similar to a flex pin. Is the $3.29 the price for one or a pair of flat-pins? Do you just crimp the wire on the non-pin side? Final question: Has the pin ever slipped off on its own from your spring clips? Thanks again.
Alex solomon's Avatar Alex solomon 11:18 AM 07-13-2004
I like this one better. A screw compression that accepts upto 8 ga. wire.
If the pin fits ie.
beowulf7's Avatar beowulf7 11:31 AM 07-13-2004
Originally posted by Alex solomon
I like this one better. A screw compression that accepts upto 8 ga. wire. If the pin fits ie.

That looks very similar to Monster's flex pin. I wonder which one is better.

Monster's product costs $20 for a ste of 4 flex pins. The one you mentioned from Parts Express costs $6.80 per pack of 4, so it seems like a steal. I've heard good things about Parts Express, but am not familiar with Dayton Audio.

But I'm very tempted to get 3 packs of those DAYTON AUDIO SPEAKER PLUG 2mm PIN 2 RED/2 BLK you mentioned. Your link didn't seem to work, so if anyone else is interested in this product, go to and search for Part # 091-1255.

Also, the guy I called on the phone at Parts Express said that this speaker plug should fit in a standard spring clip. I didn't measure how large the Kenwood's is, but I assume it should easily accommodate a 2mm pin.
Alex solomon's Avatar Alex solomon 11:41 AM 07-13-2004
Thanks beowulf7. Link is now corrected. BTW, part # 091-310 much cheaper. Check this link.
beowulf7's Avatar beowulf7 11:46 AM 07-13-2004
Originally posted by Alex solomon
Thanks beowulf7. Link is now corrected. BTW, part # 091-310 much cheaper. Check this link.

Thanks, but I don't think it's cheaper. 091-1255 was $6.80 for a total of 4 connectors. This (091-310) is $3.90 for a total of 2 connectors.

Also, I'd rather that the pin be a little flexible, like the Monster, than something brittle that can potentially snap off easily, like these pins. But if it's a low risk, I guess I'd go w/ the hard pin, since they're so much cheaper.
Alex solomon's Avatar Alex solomon 11:52 AM 07-13-2004
You are right, beowulf7. My bad.
BobL's Avatar BobL 12:49 PM 07-13-2004
The RS ones are the crimp type and they come 2 pairs per package (for 1 pair of speakers). the Dayton is nicer but like I said I wasn't willing to wait. I also liked that the RS one came with plastic covers as the connections on this receiver are very close together.

Alex solomon's Avatar Alex solomon 01:00 PM 07-13-2004
Originally posted by BobL
...I also liked that the RS one came with plastic covers as the connections on this receiver are very close together.


Are the connection that close one has to worry about the pins touching each other?
BobL's Avatar BobL 03:17 PM 07-13-2004
My equipment is built into shelves in a closet and I would be concerned about them touching as I slide everything back into place. If you can access the back without a problem I wouldn't be concerned.

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