I just got my Beach Camera VSX-1121 in today. After spending a bit of time stripping the wires, getting all the speakers set up, doing MCACC, and connecting my little Sansa, I turned it on...and was treated to vomit-inducing audio. ??? Thin, overly analytic garbage. I know it's not the speakers (Pioneer BS-21s) as I had them set up with a TCA Gizmo and they sounded awesome. So, playing around, I turned on Stream Direct and shut off the awful, awful EQ (which I haven't as yet figured out how to use), and that helped matters, but something was still 'off'. Moreover, whatever bass was being output to the sub was much lower than usual; far lower than anything I ever got with my Gizmo, even after messing around with the speaker settings and individual gain on the sub channel.
Just to make sure I wasn't crazy, I dug up an 80s vintage Kenwood and began switching back and forth. Sure enough the Kenwood sounded 'normal' and the Pioneer soulless...at least at first. I'm going to try to set up a better test tomorrow - as well as redo MCACC, because that really does seem to loom large - but in the meantime, *any* advice from the avsforum wizards, for a person who's never owned an AVR before, would be most appreciated.
Meh. I'm happy that I've still got an H/K AVR 2600 on order from Amazon, but it is backordered with no ETA