Hi there, fellow audiophiles!
I'm into the home theater world since 2010, started with a humble Sony BDV-E370, which is still being used at my mother's. In June of 2019 I moved out and started to rebuild my setup, and decided to up the game and buy a receiver. I live in Brazil, so my options are very limited, specially with the budget I had. I really wanted a Yamaha, because I've always heard great things about their systems. But I had no success in finding one, after hunting high and low. So, after all the research I did, the one that I chose (and fit my budget) was the Pioneer HTP-076, which comes with the receiver model VSX-326.
It really amazed me, and I was having a good time with it until last week (after four months of use), when it started to turn off by itself while I was playing my PS2 (through the optical input). When back on, it entered a diagnostic mode and showed the "Check SP Wire" message; I searched the internet and checked all the wires, but to no avail. It's still in the one-year warranty, so I took it to a Pioneer authorized repair center. They had to replace the entire audio/video board, because one of the HDMI inputs got busted. According to the technician, it was due to an electrical instability or power surge, probably caused after a power outage; which I had one day before the problem started. Every electronic is plugged in one of those on/off power strips. That would be the TV (Panasonic plasma TC-P42S10B), PS2 Slim, PS3 Super Slim, PS4 Slim, Pioneer, set-top box, Chromecast, simple wireless phone and the internet router. He told me to buy a power conditioner instead of using the power strip; which I'm considering, but it's expensive and I can't afford one right now.
Anyway, here's the thing. I'm new to this world of receivers, so I have some questions which I'll number below. I'd be really grateful if you guys could help me out with these undying questions of mine
1 - Here are the things connected to the receiver through HDMI > PS3, PS4 and a Chromecast. PS2 through optical, and a set-top box via coaxial audio (which I barely use). Here's my question about this: I worry about the Chromecast, and it being the reason for the HDMI bust. I mean, it's always hot; does that have anything to do with it? Is it OK to leave it on all the time? When I leave my house for a long while or when I go to sleep, I turn the power strip off.
2 - The receiver does some clicking sounds. I e-mailed Pioneer and they told me it's normal, but I can't help but worry about it. It's OK when I turn it on, but when I'm watching a Blu-ray with the PS3, it does a click after a while.
3 - Sometimes, specially with the PS2 (optical), the audio takes like half a second to come in, which never happened with the Sony BDV-E370. Is that normal?
4 - About the power strip. Is it OK to use one at all? I mean, I used one at my mother's for years and not a single device went to repairs. Is a power conditioner an absolute must?
Sorry about the wall of text, but I can't stop worrying about all of that