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B&K Owner's Thread - Page 3

post #61 of 125
Quote:
Originally Posted by orobert View Post

Could someone please tell me if you can use BkcSuite to setup your Reference 50 preamp?

I've verified that firmware versions and BKS are loosely coupled. The current BKS will not work with Ref50 firmware.
Quote:
Originally Posted by orobert View Post

I already contacted support (email) without answer

Call and leave voicemail. There's still a chance they'll get back to you.

I'll see if I can find a link to the legacy archive or find the last Ref50 BKS. You could also ping BrianC69 who says (in the Ref70 thread) that he has a dead Ref50.
post #62 of 125
By the way, as I noted in the Ref70 thread B&K is closing up shop. I believe that there may be an excellent opportunity to pick up some new gear at reasonable prices but not (yet) from the company that claims to be liquidating a bunch of their stock.

This has been discussed in the last few pages of the Ref70 thread so I would refer any questions there.
post #63 of 125
I have a ten year old ref 20 and av5000 amp that have seen continuous use and still work great. My Ref 70 has some electronic glitchs that can be resolved by rebooting the processor. My 200.7 amp appears to be bullet proof.

I might be a little leery about picking up a ref 70 as there will be no support from a defunct B&K. B&K amps are fantastic and would be a great buy in a liquidation sale.
post #64 of 125
Hello,

thanks for your help, I have been able to get a copy of the original CDROM given with the Ref. 50. Problem is I am still unable to connect to the preamp. It is recognized, but the program stays stuck on "Interrogating device". I suspect my home-made adapter needed to connect to the specific (RJ45) serial plug on the Ref. 50.
If someone here does have an original B&K serial adapter available and unused and would be willing to sell it to me, I would be glad.
MP me if so please.

Regards
Olivier
post #65 of 125
I recently stumbled across a good deal on an AVR-505 S2 and just started reading the forums. (I don't even have it in my hands yet)
I stated out audio life with standard Sony stuff, moved to Sony ES then really started to get into the higher end components. My first item was a Citation 7.0 but then I bought an ADCOM GFR-700 and was really impressed with the quality.
I've always heard that B&K is high end, top of the line stuff and have wanted one for a long time. I'm not nearly as technical as most on this site, but I like buying older (you may say outdated) high end gear once the price drops to where as a AV hobbyist I can actually afford it.
I'm trying to plan a whole house system with two independent home theater areas and I have plenty of older gear (5-10 yr old) to get me there.
I'm hoping to have a trouble free experience with my new B&K receiver. Also like most of you I'm curious to see what ATI does with it although as of today the B&K web site is now down. Chad
post #66 of 125
Quote:
Originally Posted by wowchad View Post

... as of today the B&K web site is now down. Chad

It's still there.
post #67 of 125
I'm in a similar position. I like to purchase high end equipment used when the prices drop. I currently own an AVR305 and absolutely love it. When I first bought it used four years ago, the sound began dropping out periodically. All five channels would drop out for a second then come back. I too called B&K and they said to mail it to them for diagnosis. I felt the unit was good enough to invest a little more into it. A couple of weeks later, I called B&K and they told me that my problem was very minor and they fixed it for free. They knew I wasn't the original owner, but still fixed it and shipped it back to me at absolutely no charge. WOW!!!

I recently got the bug to look at new receivers with HDMI. I don't have it in my budget to get an AVR707 (by the way, why is the 707 only 125W? This seems like a step backwards). It didn't take me long to realize, that buying a new, non-B&K with HDMI, would be taking a large step backwards in sound quality. I'd rather just feed my audio to the receiver and have a seperate HDMI switch for my projector. I've decided I'll probably be a life time owner of B&K for now on.

I'll be building a new home in about a year, and I'm planning on a larger dedicated home theater. It will probably be around 18 X 25. I feel that this size of room could use 7.1. I'm thinking of selling my AVR305 an buying a used AVR507 or an AVR507 Series 2. My reasoning is the 507 is a little newer and the processing should be better. I believe the Series 2 is even newer. I realize I can buy a seperate amp for my 305 and make it a 7.1 system.

Here are my questions.

Are there any opinions on the AVR305/7 versus the AVR505/7? Is the processing better with the 505/7. Any opinions on the series 2 (is it newer and better)? If I can get a better deal on a 505, I can always add a stereo amp to power the rear surrounds. With the very little information that goes on back there, is there any opinion on using a cheaper amp to drive those channels (keep in mind my tight budget)? I realize a cheaper amp will not sound as good, but do I really need an expensive amp to hear a bird chirp or some crowd noise from time to time? It seems not many movies are even recorded in 7.1.
post #68 of 125
The real question is do you want DTS master audio and Dolby HD Master? Are you going to be watching Blu-Rays? If so you will want something that is at least current. You can find B&K ref 70 and AVR 700 series on Audiogon and other sites every now and then. They are also at a great price. If it was me I would hold out for one of them over a 5 series.

I am still using my B&K REF 30! I am trying to hold out to see if ATI makes a REF 70 or 90 this spring!
post #69 of 125
Quote:
Originally Posted by JeffreyJonesBSME View Post

Any opinions on the series 2 (is it newer and better)? If I can get a better deal on a 505, I can always add a stereo amp to power the rear surrounds. With the very little information that goes on back there, is there any opinion on using a cheaper amp to drive those channels (keep in mind my tight budget)? I realize a cheaper amp will not sound as good, but do I really need an expensive amp to hear a bird chirp or some crowd noise from time to time? It seems not many movies are even recorded in 7.1.

The 50x series 2 fixes some problems and add some minor features. They also stopped paying the THX license so that logo is missing. I started with a 507s2 so I have no first hand experience with the 50x/50. Regarding external amps -- the 505 (and 507) only have 5 pre-outs. The 70/70x adds HDMI but they remove secondary zone support.

There's a thread in the BD area about 7.1 mixes. I believe Toy Story 3 is one of the first. However if you rent rather than purchase you may find the 7.1 and even the HD audio track itself missing (along with the "extras").

If you like B&K AVRs I'd recommend a used 707 or 507s2 (check the AVS classified or Audiogon) but if you care about HD video then HDMI (more specifically HDCP) is going to be unavoidable.
post #70 of 125
Quote:
Originally Posted by rovingtravler View Post

The real question is do you want DTS master audio and Dolby HD Master? Are you going to be watching Blu-Rays? If so you will want something that is at least current. You can find B&K ref 70 and AVR 700 series on Audiogon and other sites every now and then. They are also at a great price. If it was me I would hold out for one of them over a 5 series.

I am still using my B&K REF 30! I am trying to hold out to see if ATI makes a REF 70 or 90 this spring!

He can easily get the newer codecs by simply connecting his blu-ray player via the multi-channel inputs. Since the newer 707 doesn't have any EQ anyway a used 507 is a great receiver at a great price these days.
post #71 of 125
Quote:
Originally Posted by htcritic View Post

Since the newer 707 doesn't have any EQ anyway a used 507 is a great receiver at a great price these days.

As previously noted in this thread 70/70x multichannel input (which can be done via HDMI) is a weak alternative. While the DSP isn't at the level of a digital room correction system it does help with level matching, time alignment and low frequency resonances. You're almost certainly better off using the core CODECs via HDMI rather than multichannel in*.

That was the informal recommendation of B&K.

I do agree that the 507 is great analog AVR. I should list mine.

*E.g. my Oppo supports level and distance adjustments but the adjustments are per pair of speakers not per speaker.
post #72 of 125
Quote:
Originally Posted by bodosom View Post

As previously noted in this thread 70/70x multichannel input (which can be done via HDMI) is a weak alternative. While the DSP isn't at the level of a digital room correction system it does help with level matching, time alignment and low frequency resonances. You're almost certainly better off using the core CODECs via HDMI rather than multichannel in*.

That was the informal recommendation of B&K.

I do agree that the 507 is great analog AVR. I should list mine.

*E.g. my Oppo supports level and distance adjustments but the adjustments are per pair of speakers not per speaker.

I wasn't arguing that a multi-channel analog solution for lossless was superior. I was simply responding to a post that said without HDMI one couldn't take advantage of lossless. With either the 307 0r 507 you can.

I "might" argue that an HDMI solution is no better since you won't lose room EQ or bass management as the 707 doesn't offer it anyhow. But since I never have tested the 707 I can't. If you have, I defer to your knowledge in this regard. But a multi-channel analog input solution is workable, extends the life of the unit and if you can calibrate, sounds great.
post #73 of 125
Quote:
Originally Posted by htcritic View Post

I "might" argue that an HDMI solution is no better since you won't lose room EQ or bass management as the 707 doesn't offer it anyhow.

Yes the Ref70/AVR-70x does distance, bass management/lfe steering and has notch filters for resonances -- you just have to fire up REW and set it up by hand. You lose all that if you do multichannel. I assume you lose the other DSP functions (surround modes etc.) as well.
post #74 of 125
Quote:
Originally Posted by bodosom View Post

Yes the Ref70/AVR-70x does distance, bass management/lfe steering and has notch filters for resonances -- you just have to fire up REW and set it up by hand. You lose all that if you do multichannel. I assume you lose the other DSP functions (surround modes etc.) as well.

Sounds like a great box. I wanted one when they were being talked about but just wanted Aud EQ. Notwithstanding the business issues with B&K I always loved their gear. Owned a 307 a 507 and a Ref 50.
post #75 of 125
I have one of each of these receivers. The 5 channel 505 is upstairs in my main living room and the 7 channel 507 will be going down in the theater room where I can actually make use of the extra 2 channels.
(BTW the 507 S2 does in fact have 7 speaker terms)
I will probably never use most of the features and must admit I'm lost reading the posts listed above but for the price ($4-500'ish) I figured I couldn't go wrong with these super nice receivers for my simpleton needs.

I have 4 young kids and run a business so the time needed to play with this stuff and properly dial in every last detail eludes me these days. But after owning a couple Sony ES receivers and then a higher end Harmon Kardon and an Adcom I can say there's a noticeable difference with B&K!
post #76 of 125
I was offered a deal for a B&K AVR505 S2 that I couldn't pass up. I use an Oppo BDP-83 as my source component. So, which unit will have the superior DACs, the Oppo or the B&K? I will be using both analog 5.1 and coaxial bitstream (I'm aware the B&K lacks HDMI, that I have to use analog 5.1 for lossless, that the B&K has no bass management over analog, and that the Oppo has limited crossover, distance, and bass management capabilities. I am only interested in the quality of the DACs). If anyone has any idea about this, please chime in. I fully intend to do a side-by-side and report back later today after everything is calibrated properly. I'm replacing my B&K AVR202 (an excellent unit) because it lacks 5.1 inputs.
post #77 of 125
So, I finally have the Oppo configured with the B&K AVR505 S2. I have confirmed that the audio dropouts I was experiencing with my older B&K AVR202 were the fault of the older receiver not being able to pass the DTS-MA and DD-True "core" on Blu-ray discs, and not the Oppo BDP-83. Now I have three options with the excellent Oppo: listen through the fantastic two channel analog stereo output, listen through the 5.1 (my receiver is 5.1) analog outputs, or listen through the (up to 192k) coaxial bitstream output. All three are excellent. The 5.1 analog has to be adjusted in the Oppo. I have two large mains and a sub, so I set the center and rear to small. Next, I boost the sub output 10db in the player. Finally, I lower the trim on the five speakers by 5db.

All three settings are enjoyable. 5.1 analog sounds amazing clear, while coaxial bitstream sounds very natural because of the eq and room filters I can apply over digital. Two channel stereo actually sounds the best as it combines the best of the other two (other than multi-channel).

This is a sufficient step for me until I upgrade both the player and the receiver again. Any thoughts?
post #78 of 125
Is anyone experienced with the Sr 10.1 remote for the 505 S2? I am having problems configuring macros.
post #79 of 125
Quote:
Originally Posted by Active Speaker View Post

Is anyone experienced with the Sr 10.1 remote for the 505 S2? I am having problems configuring macros.

Your question is a bit vague. The SR10 is just a URC MX-700 with a pre-loaded configuration.
post #80 of 125
Actually, I believe it is an MX-850, at least the remote I have. Anyway, I just can't seem to get the macros to work the way I want. I wish I could meet someone who previously set up B&K equipment in the home.
post #81 of 125
Quote:
Originally Posted by Active Speaker View Post
Actually, I believe it is an MX-850, at least the remote I have.
I have an SR 10.1 in my hand. The inside label says MX-700B&K. Do you have "B&K SYSTEM REMOTE" silk screened on the front?

Quote:
Anyway, I just can't seem to get the macros to work the way I want.
Can you be more specific. When I used the MX-700 they worked as documented.
post #82 of 125
Yes, I'd like True-HD sound, but it's not in my budget. The AVR 707 is just too expensive for me right now and alternatives in my price range mean lower sound quality.

I am now using a B&K AVR 305, but I just purchased an AVR 507 for $380 plus shipping. A great deal! It is currently being shipped. I wanted a newer receiver, with a little better processing and 7 amps for speakers. I've been doing some research and I've recently learned that some Blue-Ray players have 7.1 analog outputs on the back. I assume this means that the processing goes on in the DVD player. I also read that my PS3 only outputs 5.1 through the optical cable and 7.1 through HDMI only.

I've looked at the online owners manual of the AVR 507 and even though it's a 7 amp system, I only see analog inputs for a 5.1 system. It seems the processor can do 6.1 where the rear surrounds are mono. This is better than the AVR 305 could do. Has anyone used an older receiver as an amplifier and used the analog output of a Blue-Ray player to get descrete 7.1 sound? Did you get good results? Is there any way of doing this with my AVR 507? It seems odd there are analog inputs for only 5 of the 7 amps. It seems there should be a way to tie into those other 2 amps.
post #83 of 125
Quote:
Originally Posted by JeffreyJonesBSME View Post

Is there any way of doing this with my AVR 507?

No.
Quote:


It seems odd there are analog inputs for only 5 of the 7 amps.

I asked about that at one time (right after I got a BD player with 7.1 output) but I never followed up. I replaced it but ultimately decided it wasn't worth chasing 7.1 multi-channel input if you had to give up all AVR DSP functions to get it.

Although the unit can do DTS-ES I don't imagine there's much content. There's not a great deal of seven channel content either.
post #84 of 125
I've been a very satisified Ref 50 S1 owner for about ten years. It's one of the best pieces of gear I've ever owned, if not the best. I was looking forward to getting the Ref 70 but when it came to market with no auto-room correction and no HD audio decoding, I had to take it off the table as an option. I do not buy audio gear on promises.

I just heard the news (well not so new anymore) that they have gone belly-up. I saw it coming, and in a way even participated in their demise. Even though I always got great customer service (two firmware upgrades and a replacement remote at no cost to me other than shipping), they do not have a good track record for upgrades. When the Ref 70 came out already behind the times and only with a promise of an upgrade, I must admit that I wrote them off. Then when the economy tanked, and Tweeter went under (the only big-name B&K dealer that I knew of), I really did not see how they could to survive with no up-to-date processor/receiver product. I'm sad that it came to pass, but this little guy just couldn't compete with the big-budget companies when it comes to developing increasingly complex digital products.

I will continue to enjoy my Ref 50 for a long time - it's still a tremendous piece in terms of sound quality. I still love it. Right now I'm in the market for an HDMI 1.4 pre/pro to replace it in the main system, but plan to press it into service for a secondary system. I'm actually quite fearful that any of the short list of HDMI 1.4 receivers or pre/pros will be a big step down in terms of sound quality vs. my Ref 50. This is a big reason I've not pulled the trigger on anything already...I'm kind of waiting on some flagship 1.4 gear to hit the market before committing.

RIP B&K. You made some sweet gear and I'm extremely happy that I got to experience the phenomenal Ref 50. Unlike some in this thread I'm a very satisfied customer, but your new products just could not compete.
post #85 of 125
Quote:
Originally Posted by bodosom View Post

No.
I asked about that at one time (right after I got a BD player with 7.1 output) but I never followed up. I replaced it but ultimately decided it wasn't worth chasing 7.1 multi-channel input if you had to give up all AVR DSP functions to get it.

Although the unit can do DTS-ES I don't imagine there's much content. There's not a great deal of seven channel content either.

I'll upgrade again in a couple of years to a 7.1 receiver that has HDMI and DTS-HD MA. I'm sure by then I'll be able to get a good deal on a used receiver. I wish it could be B&K, but that may never happen. If I was to buy a used receiver today, are there any recomendations. I was looking at some Onkyo units, but I started reading a lot of reviews of people saying they don't last long. Denon? Marantz? Yamaha?
post #86 of 125
Quote:
Originally Posted by JeffreyJonesBSME View Post

If I was to buy a used receiver today, are there any recomendations.

Frankly the other products you mention really don't compare with the build quality of B&K. Their products were real bargains.

Anthem is well received and at close to retail (for the AVRs) of B&K can also be considered a bit of a bargain. Apparently they're hard to set up but worth the effort. The pre/pros are better yet but a bit more money.
post #87 of 125
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jarrod View Post

...I just heard the news (well not so new anymore) that they have gone belly-up....RIP B&K....

Also not so new is the fact that ATI bought B&K.

Here's what the Sr.VP Sales/Marketing for ATI had to say about their plans for the Ref 70. Here's hoping they handle things differently!

ck
post #88 of 125
On the subject of other worthy replacements I'd be considering the following:

Anthem
Arcam
Pioneer

ck
post #89 of 125
Quote:
Originally Posted by Chris Kane View Post

Also not so new is the fact that ATI bought B&K.

Here's what the Sr.VP Sales/Marketing for ATI had to say about their plans for the Ref 70. Here's hoping they handle things differently!

ck

Thanks Chris. I've seen that - it's actually the same thread where I first learned of the "demise" of B&K. I do suppose ATI purchasing them is quantitatively different than them going under. I was being qualitative.

I'm currently looking hard at the Marantz AV7005 as a replacement but there are a few things missing that I'm using in my Ref 50, such as the dearth of coax/optical digital inputs and a digital out for zone b.

I've got the Ref 50 decently EQ'd with REW software and the Ref 50's rudimentary onboard PEQ. So I could live with an HDMI switch and the Ref 50 for awhile longer, to hold out for the ATI/B&K piece if they ever get their act together. I'm not in a particular hurry but will need a piece to use in the secondary theater in the next ~6 months.

Thanks for the response.
post #90 of 125
Quote:
Originally Posted by Chris Kane View Post

On the subject of other worthy replacements I'd be considering the following:

Anthem
Arcam
Pioneer

ck

I'm not familiar with Anthem or Arcam, but Pioneer.....really? I've had some Pioneer car audio before. About 8 yeears ago, I decided I wanted a car stereo that I could listen to MP3 CD's. I bought a Pioneer head unit instead of the Alpine I wanted, because of price. I returned it because the sound quality was terrible. I spent the additional amount for the Alpine. Is their home audio much better than their car audio?

Regular Pioneer or Pioneer Elite only? Though I know my AVR 507 will be wonderful, I'm having a little buyers remorse not buying something more current with DTS-HD MA and HDMI.
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