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2011 vs. 2012 AVR for budget system?

post #1 of 17
Thread Starter 
Hi All,

I've been very torn the past few weeks over making a decision on a new AVR for my first system, which is very, very budget oriented.

I'm trying to stay under $300.

Open box/refurb Denon 1611/1911's seem very appealing, but is, say, the 1612 or 1712 a better choice given they are newer? What would be the down-side of using last years model?

I know that i need ARC.
I really don't need more than 5.1
All of my components are HDMI

I'll be powering an l/c/r setup of PSB Image speakers, and adding a sub eventually, for a 3.1, maybe 5.1 in the distant future ...

I personally think that there are $50 devices that handle streaming/networking much better than AVR's and look decades better in the eye-candy department, so i can do without that.

Any words of wisdom on which '11 models would work?

Thanks!
post #2 of 17
Any of these models would work fine .. the newer XX12 models simply adding a nicer GUI which overlays on 2D video to include a volume indicator, rather than a block text on black background and no volume bar with the XX11 models. Also note the 1712 upgrades to the higher version of Audyssey MultEQ XT. Review post #2 in the Denon XX12 Owner's thread linked in my sig to learn more about the different XX12 models and where to purchase for up to 30% off MSRP (see post #3 Purchasing section).
post #3 of 17
look at the Denon AVR 1712. It has a better version of Audyssey room calibration than the 1611 or 1911. The 1712 uses Audyssey MultiEQ XT which does higher resolution filtering than the 1611 or 1911 which only use Audyssey MultiEQ. Plus it has a better GUI interface.

http://www.accessories4less.com/make...eceiver/1.html
post #4 of 17
Take a look at the Onkyo RC360. It can be had for $299 shipped at PCRichards. It's basically the same thing as the Onkyo 609, but two less features. 7.2 system receiver with the hot Marvel graphics processor to upconvert all your HDMI content to 1080p. I'm probably going to get one as I am in the same market as you.
post #5 of 17
I have a 1611 and am very pleased. However, the lack of pre outs is the one thing I wish I had.

I am building a ht system for a family member, will go with a yamaha rx v667 instead simply for the pre outs. The downside of the yamaha is the ypao vs audyessy.
post #6 of 17
Thread Starter 
While I have seen pictures of the different GUI's, I have to wonder ...

How much does one actually use/see the interface?

also, I see a great deal of weight put on the different room correction software throughout the forum. Is it really that big of a difference going from MultiEQ to MultiEQ XT? I've never experienced it to really get a feel, and I'm guessing that most stores don't use it to set up their display units.

... to make things difficult, I found a 1911, open box for something like $230 w/ full warranty (i believe). ugh.

Between that and maybe a 1712 from one of the aforementioned retailers (thanks, jdsmoothie ... you're guides are gold)?
post #7 of 17
^^
How much you depend on the GUI depends on whether your AVR is tucked away in a closet somewhere (eg. to see the volume level displayed on the TV rather than on the AVR's front panel display). Last year's lower level models (eg. 1911) do not have the GUI/volume bar feature while all of the XX12 models do. The benefit of XT over MultEQ likely becomes more apparent with better quality speaker setups. And you are correct in that stores (eg. Best Buy) likely are not going to have set up the Auto EQ program as they want the ability to be able to connect the AVR to multiple sets of speakers. The older models can generally convert analog ---> HDMI whereas the 1712 cannot; however, as you have all HDMI sources, this should not be an issue for you.
post #8 of 17
Quote:
Originally Posted by aburkhardt View Post

While I have seen pictures of the different GUI's, I have to wonder ...

How much does one actually use/see the interface?

also, I see a great deal of weight put on the different room correction software throughout the forum. Is it really that big of a difference going from MultiEQ to MultiEQ XT? I've never experienced it to really get a feel, and I'm guessing that most stores don't use it to set up their display units.

... to make things difficult, I found a 1911, open box for something like $230 w/ full warranty (i believe). ugh.

Between that and maybe a 1712 from one of the aforementioned retailers (thanks, jdsmoothie ... you're guides are gold)?

That 1911 deal is awesome!

My 1611 has been nothing but a pleasure, only really lacking audio pre-outs. If you don't need those, these denon receivers are great especially at the current price points.
post #9 of 17
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Fishfund View Post

Take a look at the Onkyo RC360. It can be had for $299 shipped at PCRichards. It's basically the same thing as the Onkyo 609, but two less features. 7.2 system receiver with the hot Marvel graphics processor to upconvert all your HDMI content to 1080p. I'm probably going to get one as I am in the same market as you.

Just got through toying with a switch to Onkyo, specifically the RC360, but there seem to be a great deal of quality issues, both in the short and long term. Threw my hand into each little cubby at the BB Magnolia wall of AVR's last night, and I probably could have identified the Onkyo's wearing a blindfold -- noticeable hotter! Onkyo really temped me with features, but the quality, heat, and lack of MultiEQ seems to be the deciding factor.

If only newegg would re-list the 1712 @ $250 again! Called a bunch of authorized dealers, as recommended (thanks!), but can't get down to anywhere near that magical deal ... the hunt continues ...
post #10 of 17
^^
Note that Newegg is NOT an authorized Denon reseller so should you decide to purchase through them, make sure to factor in the cost of an additional warranty as well.
post #11 of 17
Thread Starter 
I do have one more question ...

What happens if I ditch the HD cable box (netflix & hulu+ ftw!) for basic cable that uses either a coax connection, or composite? In order for the signal to pass through the receiver to the TV via a single HDMI cable, would I need an upconverting AVR? At the very least could I rely on the ARC to send the audio back through the receiver?

This also comes into play as I want to split my cable connection and send it both through the TV for OTA channels, and through the digital cable box.

I'm not totally clear on how the video processing capabilities of some of the mid/higher level AVR's come into play ...

can anyone shed any light on what's needed?
post #12 of 17
^^
If you ditch the cable box, then you would have to connect the coax line directly to the TV as the AVR has no TV tuner and therfore the video would not pass through the AVR, rather only the audio which would pass via either the ARC feature or via an optical cable connected from the TV to the AVR.
post #13 of 17
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by jdsmoothie View Post

^^
If you ditch the cable box, then you would have to connect the coax line directly to the TV as the AVR has no TV tuner and therfore the video would not pass through the AVR, rather only the audio which would pass via either the ARC feature or via an optical cable connected from the TV to the AVR.

Well, there would still be a digital cable box in the mix. As everything has moved to digital (at least with comcast, in my area), a digital cable box is required even for basic, bare-bones, cable tv.

How have AVR's in the past handled coax inputs (analog)? and what about now, with a coax line coming out of a digital tuner box? I also would have the option of using composite from the cable box to the AVR. I'm assuming that I would need a unit capable of upconverting to HDMI in order to utilize that feature; however, does upconverting apply to coax as well? or just composite, component, s-video ...

My goal for this HT is primarily movies, blu-ray, and streaming content from a WDTV Live, all of which are HDMI sources. I don't watch too much TV, and I realize that with a basic, stripped down, crappy SD cable source, there's not going to be much of anything "hi-fi" ... i'm just trying to figure out how to get a non-HD, non-HDMI cable source to play nicely ...
post #14 of 17
Call J&R. A 1712 shipped for $299. I just ordered one.
post #15 of 17
Quote:
Originally Posted by aburkhardt View Post

Well, there would still be a digital cable box in the mix. As everything has moved to digital (at least with comcast, in my area), a digital cable box is required even for basic, bare-bones, cable tv.

How have AVR's in the past handled coax inputs (analog)? and what about now, with a coax line coming out of a digital tuner box? I also would have the option of using composite from the cable box to the AVR. I'm assuming that I would need a unit capable of upconverting to HDMI in order to utilize that feature; however, does upconverting apply to coax as well? or just composite, component, s-video ...

My goal for this HT is primarily movies, blu-ray, and streaming content from a WDTV Live, all of which are HDMI sources. I don't watch too much TV, and I realize that with a basic, stripped down, crappy SD cable source, there's not going to be much of anything "hi-fi" ... i'm just trying to figure out how to get a non-HD, non-HDMI cable source to play nicely ...

AVRs don't accept coax video inputs so you would have to connect the coax line to the TV directly, otherwise you can connect a composite video cable to the AVR that features "analog-->HDMI" conversion (the Denon 1611/1911 can do this but only the 1912 and higher can do this in the XX12 series).
post #16 of 17
Quote:
Originally Posted by aburkhardt View Post

Well, there would still be a digital cable box in the mix. As everything has moved to digital (at least with comcast, in my area), a digital cable box is required even for basic, bare-bones, cable tv.

How have AVR's in the past handled coax inputs (analog)? and what about now, with a coax line coming out of a digital tuner box? I also would have the option of using composite from the cable box to the AVR. I'm assuming that I would need a unit capable of upconverting to HDMI in order to utilize that feature; however, does upconverting apply to coax as well? or just composite, component, s-video ...

My goal for this HT is primarily movies, blu-ray, and streaming content from a WDTV Live, all of which are HDMI sources. I don't watch too much TV, and I realize that with a basic, stripped down, crappy SD cable source, there's not going to be much of anything "hi-fi" ... i'm just trying to figure out how to get a non-HD, non-HDMI cable source to play nicely ...

I suggest you try connecting the sd video directly from the cable box to the tv. The receiver won't improve the picture quality much. And then preferably connect the audio directly from the cable box to the receiver. That is how we used to do it. Red and white analog stereo. Hopefully that cable box has digital audio out. Sending digital audio to the receiver should sound better than the picture will look. Last option connect audio from cable box to tv first.
post #17 of 17
Quote:
Originally Posted by rwe416 View Post

Call J&R. A 1712 shipped for $299. I just ordered one.

Thanks rwe416, I just placed my order for the 1712
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