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Help me choose a receiver!

post #1 of 29
Thread Starter 
I recently upgraded a few things in my system, my current system consists of the following:
2 Polk RTI-A9's
1 Polk CSI-A6 center
2 Polk Monitor 50's for the rear
Elemental Designs A350 Sub
Pioneer Elite PRO 141 FD Monitor 60 inch

I am very happy with my current speakers, the A9's which I recently obtained, but the receiver is the weak point in the system. I have an onkyo sr606 which I have had for years.

Now here is where I am torn, I know I have to upgrade the receiver, as I can't even run an external amp with it. I have the following two things I have been considering.

Pioneer Elite CS-55 receiver. I am thinking it should be sufficient to run everything. Or something comparable, I am up to suggestions for an Onkyo or Denon.

Or, go with a Pioneer receiver which is lower in the line but still allows pre amp outs and get an Emotiva XPA 3 to run the A9's and CSI A6. Other manufacturers are a possibility again, Onkyo or Denon.

Cost is a consideration and that is where I am torn. What would suit me better in my situation. Any advice or guidance is highly appreciated. If any other information is required to help in guiding my down the right path, let me know. Thanks again.

Budget max is $1600

I mostly watch movies, and maybe 10 % of the time for music
post #2 of 29
Quote:
Originally Posted by pikkashoe View Post


Or, go with a Pioneer receiver which is lower in the line but still allows pre amp outs and get an Emotiva XPA 3 to run the A9's and CSI A6. Other manufacturers are a possibility again, Onkyo or Denon.

This.
post #3 of 29
Thread Starter 
IF you are in my shoes, which onkyo or denon do you get.
I basically just need pre outs since I would be getting the emotiva.
post #4 of 29
If you want Denon it would have to be the Denon 3312 since it is the lowest Denon with preouts.

Or look at the Marantz SR6006

Or Onkyo NR709 or NR809.

If you don't need networking or Airplay then look at the Marantz SR5005 or SR6005 and save a little money. Accessories4less.com carries both.
post #5 of 29
Thread Starter 
Thanks afrogt. I will definitely check out the Onkyo's as my sr 606 has served me well for the last few years.

One last question for you experts, looking at the TXnr 3008, lets say you were able to get it for a good price, would this receiver running the fronts bi amped to the a9's and csi a6 be a better solution then running the 809 with the emotiva xpa3.

Reason I ask is for the audessy xt32, is it worth spending the extra money?

Looks like the 809 with the emotiva will run me around $1800
I can get the 3008 for about $1900.

What are your thoughts experts?
post #6 of 29
Denon 4311. CALL Electronics Expo, $1,238.99 shipped. Has XT32, may not need external amp(s) depending on room size, listening distance and desired SPL.
post #7 of 29
^^
+1. If i were you, Denon 4311 will be it. Your Polks are 8Ohm with 90db sensitivity, the 4311 will drive these speakers loud and clean with ease, no external amp needed and use the money you save for another good sub to run as 7.2 or 9.2. To me it is a waste of money adding an external amp if using the 4311 with your speakers.
post #8 of 29
Thread Starter 
Im assuming I can bi amp using the denon to power the A9s?
post #9 of 29
I just been looking over the new onkyo 818 manaul, it makes the denon 4311 look like a 1950s AM radio !!! The onkyo 818 is loaded with new menu features, plus high current amps. Can't wait to see what the new 3/5009 replacements brings to the table.. Hope onkyo's QC was put into overdrive on these new avrs.
post #10 of 29
Thread Starter 
LOL 1950's am radio. Hilarious.
post #11 of 29
Thread Starter 
Utahpaul, wow thats a hell of a price on the Denon, whats the catch???
post #12 of 29
I believe bi-amping provides questionable value, if any benefit at all based on what I've read from highly respected/knowledgeable/experienced AVS members and other sites. I think of it as analogous to the guy who puts an after market wing on the trunk of a 10 year old Honda to "improve it's performance and thus impress his friends". It "may" look cool to some, but improve performance???
post #13 of 29
Thread Starter 
I was under the impression bi-amping was like bridging a channel, allowing for more power to be sent to the speaker.

Ive never done it, so I was just curious
I thought I read somewhere that you can also bridge channels with certain amps.

I just wanted to see what other options are available if the 140 watts is not sufficient to push the A9's.
post #14 of 29
See "Denon 4311 @ EE for $1329".
post #15 of 29
Quote:
Originally Posted by joehonest View Post

I just been looking over the new onkyo 818 manaul, it makes the denon 4311 look like a 1950s AM radio !!! The onkyo 818 is loaded with new menu features, plus high current amps. Can't wait to see what the new 3/5009 replacements brings to the table.. Hope onkyo's QC was put into overdrive on these new avrs.

It all depends if those features mean anything to a buyer. Denon Amp has been bench marked very well by Hometheater mag.
I would choose performance and reliability over feature.
post #16 of 29
How big is your room? Listening distance? Desired SPL at listening distance?
post #17 of 29
Thread Starter 
Room is pretty big, 16 x 16, but the ceiling goes up about 18 feet.

Listening distance is about 11 to 12 ' at the center seat.

NOt really sure what my desired spl level would be. I calibrated the system at 80bd using an spl meter.
post #18 of 29
Thread Starter 
Utah, searched for the thread and found it. Havent read through the whole thing, but sounds like its a refurbished unit. Is that correct?

Still reading
post #19 of 29
^^ you could use another sub for your room.
post #20 of 29
Thread Starter 
tvuong, im actually very satisfied with my sub set up currently.

on the phone right now with EE, man my wallet hates this website.
post #21 of 29
It is NOT refurbished, it's new in box. Just call and ask to confirm. That's a large volume and longish listening distance. I agree two sub's would be beneficial in that volume and the denon with full xt32 will calibrate them separately. The 818 mentioned by an earlier poster has a crippled xt32 implementation with respect to two sub's and room correction. You "may" want an external amp if you want listen to movies at near reference levels.

From surveys and comments here on AVS, most people watch movies at 5-10db BELOW reference level. Reference is VERY loud!
post #22 of 29
Thread Starter 
Yeah im on the phone with them now.
They are out of stock,but im going ahead and pre ordering now.

So, you dont think the 140 watts a channel will be sufficient?
Is there no option to bridge the channels for the a9's?
I know its 9.2, but I will only be running a 5.1 system for the near future.

I am running an Onkyo sr606 with Polk monitor 50's currently, so I am sure this will be a huge step up from that system, to this (denon with a9's)
post #23 of 29
^^^

personally, i do not think you will need a separate amp... i drive much harder to drive speakers than yours (at a similar listening distance) with no issues to VERY loud volumes... before i sold my amp, i tried VERY hard to clip/put the avr into protection shutdown, and i could not do it... i run 5.2... btw, the comment by another poster about you needing another sub is spot on...

no, you cannot bridge the amps... even if you could, it would only give you 3db more (not to mention decrease the load stability of the amplifier)...

if the denon alone doesn't drive your speakers to the required spl, you are going to need SIGNIFICANTLY more than the emo in question... the denon is 4 ohm stable, and hits rather close to it's stated specs...
post #24 of 29
As an example of power requirements, assume your setup would require 300 watts per channel to achieve reference level, 105 db per channel. How soundproofed is your room and how far away are the neighbors? Is the local chief of police your friend, or would you enjoy his deputies stopping by for a visit on movie night? Do you value your hearing, or are you setting aside money for hearing aids in your later years?

Anyway, would 102db per channel suffice? If so, it would cut your power requirements in half to 150 watt per channel. Wife still screaming "turn it down!"? How about 99db per channel; it cuts your power requirements in half again, to 75 watts per channel. I think you see my point.
post #25 of 29
Thread Starter 
cctonej, yeah i also dont think i will need an external amp.

I see the comments about the multiple subs. What benefit would i get from a second sub. I mean, I am very very satisfied with my lfe set up, never felt it was lacking in anyway. But now my curiousity has been sparked?
Problem is, finding a place to put the second sub.

Utah, lol, I live in a single family home, neighbors are far enough that they dont hear anything. THe local fire chief is my best friend, but that doesnt count those it? I do value my hearing. So i see your point.
I think you put my concerns to ease. I imagine this will definitely blow my old system out of the water in terms of quality and sound stage. Very excited to use the xt32 audessy.

PS no wife, thats why I can afford all these toys.
Quick question, the db levels you mention, I imagine you determine those by running the SPL meter during a movie to determine peak level it reaches?

PS order placed, should come in to EE in about 7 days, then out to me.

What do you guys think of the supplementary warranty for an additional 2 years. The salesman said I could call back if I wanted it.
post #26 of 29
Factory warranty on 4311 is 3 years. I don't believe in extended warranties. Any manufactured electronic product can have issues right out of the box, or develop them shortly thereafter. If it's going do fail due to a manufacturing defect, that generally occurs within months, at most, well within warranty limits.
post #27 of 29
Most AVR's power output drops precipitously when driving more than 2 channels. While those Polks claim to be fairly efficient and easy to drive, if you check the Polk forums they suck power like the Las Vegas strip at night.

If you really want to be able to drive them and do so cleanly without any worries at all get the separate amp for the fronts or at least the mains.

But it's your money.
post #28 of 29
When the AVR is setup the "volume" indicator will read "0" when it's playing at reference level. If it shows "-10", for example, it's playing at 10 db below reference level. The official denon 4311 thread and Audyssey thread will be invaluable sources of help for you. The experts there are extremely knowledgeable and helpful. I'd suggest starting to read the last 50 pages of comments in each, the FAQs, Batpig's guide, etc
post #29 of 29
Thread Starter 
Kini, well I will run the sytem using the Denon for now, if I feel its not running at its full potential, then down the road once I pay the receiver off I will entertain the Idea of getting an external amp.

I have a feeling I wont be needing one, but let me know jump ahead of myself just yet.

Thanks for the help guys, I will keep you posted when the receiver arrives.
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