I just purchased a pair of Boston Acoustics E60 speakers, and am considering upgrading my amp. I currently have Sony STR-DH100, probably one of the cheapest receivers you can find. I got it even cheaper ($25) used, and I don't feel attached to it on emotional level. My budget is somewhat flexible, with $300 being the threshold amount, above which I will have to sit down and think before going over.
Several forum members recommended Denon AVR-1613 or AVR-E300. I went to my local big box store to check them out, and I was somewhat disappointed by how they felt. In comparison, my cheap Sony looks much more solidly built. I am afraid that the little plastic buttons on the Denon will break in a few months. I don't mean to badmouth Denon; I know it has a solid user base in this forum, and if anything, from what I gather, Sony is the one not getting much love here. I could not really tell how the Denon sounded. From what I read, it produces a great sound, and has Audissey.
I looked up used Sony ES receivers, and found one for sale at $175. It is a STR-DA90ESG, which was considered a great receiver when it was released in 1997. I like the aesthetics of the Sony, but would not want to buy it on that basis alone.
Can someone comment on the pros and cons of choosing the older Sony STR-DA90ESG vs the new Denon AVR-E300? I am mostly concerned with sound quality and durability. Can you please comment on the benefits of Audyssey in a 2.1 configuration?
I will use the system strictly for music. The room is 12x14 ft. The speakers are Boston Acoustics E60. I will likely add a subwoofer at some point.
Do you need any digital inputs?
I looked at the HK 3490, too, but if I am buying a more recent receiver anyway, the Denon looks a better option because of the ability to stream Spotify. If I buy an older receiver, I will keep my laptop as a source.
If you want to stream services like Pandora, Spotify and internet radio then yes you need a more modern receiver.
I currently listen to Spotify and my MP3/FLAC collection from a laptop. I use the laptop's headset output, connected to the receiver. I use DFX Audio Enhancer software. So, I could live with an older as well as newer receiver. The objective is to get a high quality receiver. If it does not support streaming, that's fine; I can keep my laptop.
The main question remains: in terms of sound quality, will a 16-year old higher-end receiver (Sony STR-DA90ESG) sound better than a modern budget receiver (Denon AVR-E300)?
I think I'd be tempted to get the Sony for this purpose.
Pros: Beefy power supply and amp section, high end AV receiver at the time.
Cons: 16 years old, New receivers have internet streaming, HDMI inputs, Audyssey room correction, TrueHD & DTS-MA decoding from Blu Ray, bass management, etc.
I don't know if a headset output is the best way to send your music to a receiver. Maybe someone else will chime in.
|Denon Avr E300 , Boston Acoustics E60 High Performance Bookshelf Speaker , Sony Str Dh100 2 Channel Audio Receiver Black , Denon Avr 1613 Receiver|