Help me pulling the trigger on amp/streamer? - AVS Forum | Home Theater Discussions And Reviews
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post #1 of 12 Old 01-19-2020, 11:24 PM - Thread Starter
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Help me pulling the trigger on amp/streamer?

Hello

After spending days going back and forward on what equipment to buy I set myself a budget of ~800 for a receiver/amp to power my Elac UniFi UF5's.
My room is about 18x24 in size and I do tend to listen to music on the loud size when no one else is home; 85-90spl at 10ft from the speaker.

My content is exclusively made of HD streaming services. And for music genres I listen to pretty much everything in between Norah Jones and Pantera.

The three contenders:
Yamaha R-N803 : I like simplicity of the all in one, comes with the Yamaha YPAO room correction eq, supports a subwoofer and that it is the cheapest option. My concern is if I ever want to upgrade, it is pretty much $600 flushed down the drain since it doesn't have pre-outs.

Bluesound node 2 (not i) + Emotiva A300 Amp: Gives access to MQA deconding (not sure yet if it is a good or bad thing) and I like that If I want to change , dac or pre-amp later, I can still keep the Amp. Some reviews (What HiFi) ? says its output is not too clean and downgraded it from their 5 starts to 3 stars.

Denon DNP-800NE + Emotiva A300 : Alternative to the node 2; I read good reviews on how it sounds.

For the members here, any of the three is a no brainier choice or are all pretty much similar?

I swear that I will make a purchase tomorrow

Edit for adding some clarification:
This is exclusively for music
I will not "add more channels" in the future.

Last edited by HazeT; 01-19-2020 at 11:37 PM.
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post #2 of 12 Old 01-20-2020, 09:31 AM
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Have you looked at any Integra products? They also have MQA built in.

https://www.crutchfield.com/S-Bv6nQ1...gra-DTM-7.html
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post #3 of 12 Old 01-20-2020, 09:45 AM
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Personally I'd make sure the receiver has good room correction (Yamaha and Marantz and Denon are the best budget choices; Onkyo and Integra not so much) and spend most of the money on subs & room treatment, since those will impact sound the most.
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post #4 of 12 Old 01-20-2020, 10:23 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by brireeves629 View Post
Have you looked at any Integra products? They also have MQA built in.

https://www.crutchfield.com/S-Bv6nQ1...gra-DTM-7.html
I have this receiver and I really like it but if you're not planning to connect it to a TV you could get away with the more affordable DTM-6 (also known as the Onkyo 8260).
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post #5 of 12 Old 01-20-2020, 01:24 PM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by qirex View Post
I have this receiver and I really like it but if you're not planning to connect it to a TV you could get away with the more affordable DTM-6 (also known as the Onkyo 8260).
Interesting option. It has MQA decoding and pre-out for an external amp if needed. How is the Denon App to control streaming services? The one big thing missing from the Yamaha is the room calibration EQ, I've heard room calibration can do wonders to compensate a functional room that was not designed to be a music listening space.
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post #6 of 12 Old 01-20-2020, 04:12 PM
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Originally Posted by HazeT View Post
Interesting option. It has MQA decoding and pre-out for an external amp if needed. How is the Denon App to control streaming services? The one big thing missing from the Yamaha is the room calibration EQ, I've heard room calibration can do wonders to compensate a functional room that was not designed to be a music listening space.
You might be mixed up a bit. I own the Integra DTM-7/Onkyo TX-8270 which definitely does not have pre outs, it's all Zone 2 stuff. It also doesn't have any kind of room EQ. These things are true for the Denon 800H also. Given that similarly priced surround receivers do have calibration is something you should keep in mind but they generally don't have pre outs under a grand. The only one of these mass market HDMI stereo receivers with pre out is the Marantz NR1200 which is more expensive.

The app I use is Integra ControlPro, it's usable especially if you have stuff saved in your Tidal collection but it's not the best for searching or browsing. I generally prefer the Sonos UI or Tidal app. I have not used the Denon HEOS app or Bluesound but maybe look for them on YouTube so you can get a sense for how they work. In the streaming world these apps are the main way you interact with your equipment so in my opinion it's worth figuring out if they'll be usable for what you want.
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post #7 of 12 Old 01-20-2020, 04:36 PM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by qirex View Post
You might be mixed up a bit. I own the Integra DTM-7/Onkyo TX-8270 which definitely does not have pre outs, it's all Zone 2 stuff. It also doesn't have any kind of room EQ. These things are true for the Denon 800H also. Given that similarly priced surround receivers do have calibration is something you should keep in mind but they generally don't have pre outs under a grand. The only one of these mass market HDMI stereo receivers with pre out is the Marantz NR1200 which is more expensive.

The app I use is Integra ControlPro, it's usable especially if you have stuff saved in your Tidal collection but it's not the best for searching or browsing. I generally prefer the Sonos UI or Tidal app. I have not used the Denon HEOS app or Bluesound but maybe look for them on YouTube so you can get a sense for how they work. In the streaming world these apps are the main way you interact with your equipment so in my opinion it's worth figuring out if they'll be usable for what you want.
Sorry, Room EQ missing from the Integra; Tha Yamaha comes with room equalization software/mic.
For the Integra, the DTM-6 seems to have pre-outs, at least that is what the pictures show, no? Crutchfield lists it as having 6 pre-outs.

Found the DTM-6 manual online, On page 6 it states ".PRE OUT jacks: Connect a power amplifier."

Now, how do you like the sound on it? there aren't many reviews online and some of them are really harsh on it.

Last edited by HazeT; 01-20-2020 at 04:41 PM.
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post #8 of 12 Old 01-21-2020, 10:32 AM
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Originally Posted by HazeT View Post
Now, how do you like the sound on it? there aren't many reviews online and some of them are really harsh on it.
I think My DTM-7 sounds great but the 6 has a different DAC and amp so I can't tell you much. The Onkyo 8260 is the same model and probably has many more reviews.
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post #9 of 12 Old 01-21-2020, 01:08 PM
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I'd do separates vs something like that Yamaha. I have a Marantz ND8006 for my streaming device/CD transport and I love the fact that I'm not tied down to one receiver or amp.

A nice Denon or Marantz pre/amp stack looks really nice too. And you have room for future upgrades any direction you decide to go.
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post #10 of 12 Old 01-21-2020, 02:02 PM
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Originally Posted by _tk View Post
I'd do separates vs something like that Yamaha. I have a Marantz ND8006 for my streaming device/CD transport and I love the fact that I'm not tied down to one receiver or amp.

A nice Denon or Marantz pre/amp stack looks really nice too. And you have room for future upgrades any direction you decide to go.

A receiver with preouts still costs less than any processor. The main downside is "just" that most receivers don't let you completely disable their amp section and amps draw power even at idle (I looked at a spec sheet for a 6ch Classe amp the other day in another thread where that amp was rated 225 watt power draw AT IDLE - crazy - and that's not even a Pass Labs Class A amp).


Edit to note - I am not making a case against processors there. Idle power usage is actually one spec that is pretty important to me. Was just trying to say that receivers and processors can both work for the application.

Last edited by DonoMan; 01-21-2020 at 05:31 PM.
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post #11 of 12 Old 01-21-2020, 02:10 PM
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Originally Posted by DonoMan View Post
A receiver with preouts still costs less than any processor. The main downside is "just" that most receivers don't let you completely disable their amp section and amps draw power even at idle (I looked at a spec sheet for a 6ch Classe amp the other day in another thread where that amp was rated 225 watt power draw AT IDLE - crazy - and that's not even a Pass Labs Class A amp).

A receiver (in the pricerange OP is looking at) with all of the streaming options is also a box full of compromises (one of which is the amp section, like you mentioned).

My ND8006 runs very cool when on. I actually keep it behind a closed door in a maple cabinet. I'd image that most preamps of that nature do much the same.
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post #12 of 12 Old 01-21-2020, 02:28 PM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by _tk View Post
A receiver (in the pricerange OP is looking at) with all of the streaming options is also a box full of compromises (one of which is the amp section, like you mentioned).

My ND8006 runs very cool when on. I actually keep it behind a closed door in a maple cabinet. I'd image that most preamps of that nature do much the same.
Yeah, I went with discrete equiments for now. I'm new to the game but I believe that the Emotiva A300 will serve me well for as long as it lasts. That gives me the flexibility to change components higher in the stack for not much more than the Yamaha would have cost me.
Maybe keep the bluesound node 2i as transport and possibly get a an external dac and pre-amp if necessary.


Thanks all for the insights
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