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Pre/Pro or AV Reciever

post #1 of 12
Thread Starter 
I'm sure this has been posted many times on as many forums..but the Technology changes so fast in Pre/Pro/AVReceivers that I thought it should be updated.

My problem: I may or may not be in the market for a sound upgrade. I know that's a strange sentence, let me explain it Lucy..
I currently have a Yam RX-V661 7.1 receiver...it works fine..no problems..does not decode the latest modes...it does have pre-outs for all channel, No HDMI, bi-amp capable for Front mains.

But I'm thinking of an upgrade...will I get a noticeable sound upgrade if I.
1. Keep the Yam, by a 5 channel or 3+2 channel amp

2. Sell (give away) my Yam and buy an "state-of-the-art" AV/receiver..something that has the latest greatest DTS and DD...+ I really need 2 subwoofer outputs, pre-outs..

3. Buy a used "older" Pre/Pro (Krell HTS, Sunfire, Rotel, Emotiva, Parasound, etc.. but not a pre/pro from a Receiver company...) and a couple nice amps to go along with that.

Comments? Ideas?

Thanks

Mike
post #2 of 12
1. More power possibly means better sound, depending on your needs
2. You don't need two sub outputs as you can use a Y cable to accomplish that. Since the 661 I know more HDMI inputs have been added, and HDMI 1.3 to support lossless bitstream (but I think the 661 supports HDMI/PCM which should support lossless without spending more money); YPAO may have been improved, I don't know, if you were thinking of Yamaha. Some features like Dolby Volume showed up after the 661 came out, which are not available on Yamaha, see Denon or Onkyo
3. I have no opinons on that option
post #3 of 12
Thread Starter 
I'm not in love with Yamaha stuff, I've always been into more of what I would call "mid-fi/Hi-fi" Nad, Rotel Adcom, Krell, etc..I wonder if the "new" pieces from say Onkyo sound as good as yesterday's "high-end" processors for the same money.
post #4 of 12
Try locate a dealer and audition a Integra DTR 80.2 receiver
post #5 of 12
Quote:
Originally Posted by hifibuyguy View Post

I'm not in love with Yamaha stuff, I've always been into more of what I would call "mid-fi/Hi-fi" Nad, Rotel Adcom, Krell, etc..I wonder if the "new" pieces from say Onkyo sound as good as yesterday's "high-end" processors for the same money.

Or maybe you are biased and Yamaha sounds just as good as those other brands...or maybe not. The debate is endless
post #6 of 12
Yeah it definitely can go on and on... Me personally always been a yamaha freak... I personally think the Yamaha's sound better than some of the " high end " brands... I once owned a adcom gfa multiple channel amp and it was Loud but did not sound as musical as my yammie... Just my .02!!! Have fun!!! It's a great journey discovering the in's and outs of our hobby!!!
post #7 of 12
Thread Starter 
I picked up a Sunfire Ultimate Receiver yesterday, used for a pretty nice price. This was a $4500 receiver just a few years ago...200 wpc 7.3 (3 sub outs) it's supposed to have a very nice analog pre-amp section. I'm just waiting for my NHT classic 3's and center + a new Epik Legend sub to arrive at the end of this week. I know what I'm doing this weekend!!
post #8 of 12
I'm in a similar, but slightly different position. I too have the Yamaha RX-V661, but am already running it with an external amp.

I am considering an upgrade to either a newer AVR (with more HDMI inputs and the latest greatest bells & whistles) or possibly a pre/pro.

I've long liked the Yamaha sound, but am not stuck on it and would definitely consider other options (Onkyo is a top contender).

Any additional comments or suggestions other than what has already been posted above?
post #9 of 12
Thread Starter 
It's such a tough call..you can pick up a Krell HTS for $800-$1000 or any number of pretty highend pieces from just a few years ago..Parasound, Proceed, Sunfire, Nad, and so on..so maybe they wont have the "latest greatest" bells and wistles...but they just might sound better..."if you start with crap...(an"ok" sounding receiver) and add more crap (24 surround sound modes etc...) you just have a bigger piece of crap...Some of these highend pieces might not do "everything" but what they do...do might sound awesome...
post #10 of 12
More power does not mean better sound. It just means you can play louder. If you have very low sensitivity speakers and if you like to play very loud then ext. amp helps. But most amps are neutral so they do not change the sound, they just enable you to play louder. Often people equate loudness to better sound and start making euphoric posts here saying that they heard things that they never heard before. It is all in your head. If you want to hear things you will hear them :-)

I have a Denon 3310 and used Rotel RB-1080 to drive my Magnepan MG12's. I also use the same set up to drive the Klipsch RF-82's which I recently bought. These speakers dont need a lot of power but I didnt change my set up.

The problem with the AVR's is that their amps are not very good quality, even at the $1000 range. So driving them too hard may cause a lot of distortion. Imagine a 7.1 avr that weighs some $30lb or less. i.e you have 7 amps (class A/B) but it weighs under 30lbs! The older AVRs used to be better built. I still have the Yamaha 795a in my bedroom (5.1) and it weighs a lot more than the 663 which is 7.1. 665 and 667 are even lighter.

If you want ext. amps you have to buy a new AVR anyway if your AVR does not have pre-outs. Denon 3311 can be bought for some $800 with a coupon. if you want to stay with the Yamaha you could get one with pre-outs. You can get just a pre-pro but they are expensive. Even the Integra 40.2 is over $1000. SO getting a high-end AVR and using it as a pre-pro would be cheaper. You can use the AVR for rears. Then you just need ext. amp(s) for the fronts and center.

Nope Yamaha does not sound any better than others. I have the 663. I have also tried Onkyo and Marantz and contrary to popular belief they all sound pretty much the same.
It is not like one is brighter than the other.
post #11 of 12
Quote:
Originally Posted by JosephF View Post
I'm in a similar, but slightly different position. I too have the Yamaha RX-V661, but am already running it with an external amp.

I am considering an upgrade to either a newer AVR (with more HDMI inputs and the latest greatest bells & whistles) or possibly a pre/pro.

I've long liked the Yamaha sound, but am not stuck on it and would definitely consider other options (Onkyo is a top contender).

Any additional comments or suggestions other than what has already been posted above?
One major difference between onkyo/integra and Denon is that the former does not allow Audyssey Flat. You have to use Audyssey reference which rolls off the highs. If you like more treble you would want to use the flat option.
post #12 of 12
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mupi View Post

More power does not mean better sound. It just means you can play louder. If you have very low sensitivity speakers and if you like to play very loud then ext. amp helps. But most amps are neutral so they do not change the sound, they just enable you to play louder. Often people equate loudness to better sound and start making euphoric posts here saying that they heard things that they never heard before. It is all in your head. If you want to hear things you will hear them :-)

I have a Denon 3310 and used Rotel RB-1080 to drive my Magnepan MG12's. I also use the same set up to drive the Klipsch RF-82's which I recently bought. These speakers dont need a lot of power but I didnt change my set up.

The problem with the AVR's is that their amps are not very good quality, even at the $1000 range. So driving them too hard may cause a lot of distortion. Imagine a 7.1 avr that weighs some $30lb or less. i.e you have 7 amps (class A/B) but it weighs under 30lbs! The older AVRs used to be better built. I still have the Yamaha 795a in my bedroom (5.1) and it weighs a lot more than the 663 which is 7.1. 665 and 667 are even lighter.

.
.

I do agree that more power doesn't always mean better sound...it's more about what's on the inside that counts...I'll take a Krell KSA50, 50 watt class A amp over just about any amp on the market...what I was saying is if the first few watts sound like crap why would you want a 100 more..like you said, most receivers just can't deliver enough current/quality then a stand alone high quality amp. Same goes for the Processor..I'd rather have the best sounding "DTS" Pre/pro that may be a few years old, then a "new" AV receiver with all the bells and whistles...but if it sounds like crap...I don't want it.
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