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Help me pick a receiver under $1,500 to grow into

post #1 of 20
Thread Starter 
I'm looking for a receiver to grow into over the next ~5-7 years (meaning I wouldn't want to replace it until at least that long). I will need speakers at some point, but I'm not in a rush to get everything up front.

My primary need is to connect to my home network for playing movies and music off of a NAS unit via a gigabit LAN connection. I do have an apple tv, so airplay is not a requirement.

I'm currently in an 18x18 room that is open to the rest of the house on the left side (open floor plan), but I plan on moving to a new larger house in the next ~2-3 years. Running surround speakers is not an easy task in this space, so while I'd want a 7.1 system for future flexibility, I'm probably not going to use more than a 3.1 (or a soundbar + sub?) right now.

Please recommend:
Receiver ($1,000-1,500)
Speakers (L/C/R or a soundbar, and a Subwoofer) - Open to a range of prices because...

for the speakers, I'm okay buying something cheaper that I would upgrade when I move, since this room is small and I have no idea how big the next room will be. So, if there's something that I should be able to keep when I upgrade rooms, I'll spend the $$ now, if not, I'd rather keep it on the inexpensive side.

In general, I prefer to buy things that are mid range or slightly higher so they last long enough to make the $$ worthwhile (and getting the best bang for the buck in that range smile.gif )
post #2 of 20
First keep in mind that as quickly as tecnology is changing you'll likely need another AVR in that time span anyway, especially if HDMI is replaced. (yeh!) An excellent quality AVR (for now) within your budget and if you can still find one would be the Denon AVR-4311CI on clearance having been since replaced by the newer 4520CI.
post #3 of 20
Thread Starter 
Thanks for the reply!

I've been reading posts for most of the day and I see what you mean where I'm likely going to want to upgrade in a shorter timeframe than I originally thought. That said, I was having hard time finding much of a deal on the 4311, but I did come across a 2312CI for $450, which I bought (thinking that I can always return it).

Any thoughts on the Denon 2312CI? It seemed to have the features I was looking for but at a much lower than expected cost. The reviews look pretty good too.

Next up is to find a good set of L/C/R speakers and a decent sub.
post #4 of 20
Yes, any of the Denon "CI" models would make an excellent choice as well. You can review post #2 of the Denon AVR-XX12 Owner's thread linked in my sig to see a comparison of the various XX12 models.
post #5 of 20
post #6 of 20
I doubt very much that these are "very good speakers." Cheap yes, very good no. I would want to see objective tests on them before I'd pronounce them very good. Distortion for instance, especially at 80Hz as they have very small woofers.
post #7 of 20
Theresa, I think you just might be surprised if you heard them. Do they match my B&Ws? No, I wouldn't say they do. Do they provide a pleasing sound? Yes indeed, and lots of people think so. Andrew Jones has set the bar for quality sound at an incredibly affordable price.
post #8 of 20
Quote:
Originally Posted by JD in NJ View Post

Theresa, I think you just might be surprised if you heard them. Do they match my B&Ws? No, I wouldn't say they do. Do they provide a pleasing sound? Yes indeed, and lots of people think so. Andrew Jones has set the bar for quality sound at an incredibly affordable price.

I know that some have said how much they like their sound but as always I say test them. There have always been budget speakers that people raved about but they don't stand the test of time or objectively measure up. The one thing that probably sets them apart is the crossover as most budget speakers just have a capacitor for the tweeter. But there is no secret to crossover design.
Edited by Theresa - 1/22/13 at 3:55am
post #9 of 20
Quote:
Originally Posted by Theresa View Post

I doubt very much that these are "very good speakers." Cheap yes, very good no. I would want to see objective tests on them before I'd pronounce them very good. Distortion for instance, especially at 80Hz as they have very small woofers.
I said really good not very good. If you are going to criticize a post then get it right. Especially if you're going to bother to put it in quotes. There is a difference between cheap and inexpensive. You might note that I also said a nice budget 3.1 system. If you want to recommend he spend $5000 for lcr when he stated that he isnt interested in that then go ahead.
post #10 of 20
Quote:
Originally Posted by Theresa View Post

I know that some have said how much they like their sound but as always I say test them. There have always been budget speakers that people raved about but they don't stand the test of time or objectively measure up.
Instead of complaining why don't you read the op post and make a suggestion. And provide charts and graphs too please.
post #11 of 20
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bond 007 View Post

Instead of complaining why don't you read the op post and make a suggestion. And provide charts and graphs too please.

No complaint in my post, just educated observation. I built my own active speakers and am very familiar what makes a good speaker and how much a "very good speaker" costs. If the speakers were described as a good speaker for the price instead of as a "very good speaker" I would not have commented.
post #12 of 20
Quote:
Originally Posted by Theresa View Post

I know that some have said how much they like their sound but as always I say test them. There have always been budget speakers that people raved about but they don't stand the test of time or objectively measure up. The one thing that probably sets them apart is the crossover as most budget speakers just have a capacitor for the tweeter. But there is no secret to crossover design.

The crossover is indeed important. The FS52 uses an eight element crossover network, and is a bit more sophisticated than you appear to assume. There's a thread over in the Speakers forum in which the designer of this line of speakers has made the occasional appearance, and what he has to say is worth reading, IMHO.
post #13 of 20
Quote:
Originally Posted by JD in NJ View Post

The crossover is indeed important. The FS52 uses an eight element crossover network, and is a bit more sophisticated than you appear to assume. There's a thread over in the Speakers forum in which the designer of this line of speakers has made the occasional appearance, and what he has to say is worth reading, IMHO.

As I said, it's probably the crossover that "sets them apart," ie. makes them better than most budget speakers. Good crossovers can make a big difference.
post #14 of 20
Quote:
Originally Posted by Theresa View Post

No complaint in my post, just educated observation. I built my own active speakers and am very familiar what makes a good speaker and how much a "very good speaker" costs. If the speakers were described as a good speaker for the price instead of as a "very good speaker" I would not have commented.
I find it amazing that you can do that without knowing how to read.
post #15 of 20
Quote:
Originally Posted by Theresa View Post

As I said, it's probably the crossover that "sets them apart," ie. makes them better than most budget speakers. Good crossovers can make a big difference.
Are you going to state anything here that is not obvious? Surely you can offer something better than that with your speaker making abilities.
post #16 of 20

The obvious comparison between this series of Pioneer speakers is facilitated by this technical review of what appears to be a bookself version of the same basic speaker:

http://www.stereophile.com/content/pioneer-sp-bs41-lr-loudspeaker

The speaker I'd like to compare it to is the Infinity Primus P163/P363 for which relevant SP reviews are avaiable.

I'd summarize the comparison by the following two graphs:



versus:



I'll give the match to the P163 (but not with a big margin) on the following grounds:

Competitive price
Larger woofer (6 1/2 versus 5 1/2)
Smoother on axis response

Needless to say I'd recommend using any of these speakers with a good subwoofer because none of them can cut the mustard below 40 hz.
post #17 of 20
Quote:
Originally Posted by arnyk View Post

The obvious comparison between this series of Pioneer speakers is facilitated by this technical review of what appears to be a bookself version of the same basic speaker:

http://www.stereophile.com/content/pioneer-sp-bs41-lr-loudspeaker

The speaker I'd like to compare it to is the Infinity Primus P163/P363 for which relevant SP reviews are avaiable.

I'd summarize the comparison by the following two graphs:



versus:



I'll give the match to the P163 (but not with a big margin) on the following grounds:

Competitive price
Larger woofer (6 1/2 versus 5 1/2)
Smoother on axis response

Needless to say I'd recommend using any of these speakers with a good subwoofer because none of them can cut the mustard below 40 hz.

Thank you for the comparison, which is flawed only in that the bs41/fs51 are the first generation of the A.J. Pioneers, while the fs52 being discussed is second.
post #18 of 20
Quote:
Originally Posted by JD in NJ View Post

Quote:
Originally Posted by arnyk View Post

The obvious comparison between this series of Pioneer speakers is facilitated by this technical review of what appears to be a bookself version of the same basic speaker:

http://www.stereophile.com/content/pioneer-sp-bs41-lr-loudspeaker

The speaker I'd like to compare it to is the Infinity Primus P163/P363 for which relevant SP reviews are avaiable.

I'd summarize the comparison by the following two graphs:



versus:



I'll give the match to the P163 (but not with a big margin) on the following grounds:

Competitive price
Larger woofer (6 1/2 versus 5 1/2)
Smoother on axis response

Needless to say I'd recommend using any of these speakers with a good subwoofer because none of them can cut the mustard below 40 hz.

Thank you for the comparison, which is flawed only in that the bs41/fs51 are the first generation of the A.J. Pioneers, while the fs52 being discussed is second.

That's all true, but we have only limited information to work with, and I'm trying to make the best of it.

There are now at least 3 generations of Primus speakers too, but the differences among the generations does not seem to be large.

Speaker technology generally moves a lot slower than that for most electronics.

If you've got numbers for the more recent generation of Pioneers, then of course let's see 'em.

The obvious comparison is the FS512 versus the Primus P363 for which there seems to be only an extant P360 review.

The same plot for the P360 does not look that different than the P163:

P360



versus P163



Which to me underscores the point that speaker technology does not move forward all that fast.

It turns out that 2 each 6.5" speakers have about the same cone area as 3 each 5.25" speakers, and if there is any difference in probable Xmax, advantage goes to the larger drivers.
post #19 of 20
Quote:
Originally Posted by arnyk View Post

That's all true, but we have only limited information to work with, and I'm trying to make the best of it.

There are now at least 3 generations of Primus speakers too, but the differences among the generations does not seem to be large.

Speaker technology generally moves a lot slower than that for most electronics.

If you've got numbers for the more recent generation of Pioneers, then of course let's see 'em.

The obvious comparison is the FS512 versus the Primus P363 for which there seems to be only an extant P360 review.

The same plot for the P360 does not look that different than the P163:

P360



versus P163



Which to me underscores the point that speaker technology does not move forward all that fast.

It turns out that 2 each 6.5" speakers have about the same cone area as 3 each 5.25" speakers, and if there is any difference in probable Xmax, advantage goes to the larger drivers.

Please don't think I was trying to downplay your post, as it was good information indeed. My understanding is that the crossover network was changed for the new model, which I would guess is liable to have a larger influence on the sound than the 'textured' woofer cones do, and I really would like to see how they measure up now.
post #20 of 20
Thread Starter 
Thanks for the information, it definitely helped get the receiver decided (even if I ended up somewhere different then the original suggestion.

I'll likely move on to the speaker/sub areas of the forum to start building out the other pieces so I keep the topics in the right places, but I'll keep these pioneers in mind as an option.
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