Onkyo Receivers: How long should they last? - AVS Forum | Home Theater Discussions And Reviews
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post #1 of 9 Old 11-13-2014, 09:01 AM - Thread Starter
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Question Onkyo Receivers: How long should they last?

Over the last 10 or so years I've considered nothing but Onkyo receivers whenever I've needed to replace a failed one or suggest one to a friend. However my personal experience is causing me to look elsewhere. About a year ago I had a 5 year old TX-SR706 fail. Something 'popped' and the speakers started making crackling sounds whenever audio was played. Out of warranty I replaced it with a TX-NR727 which has been running fine. However I have a TX-SR506 connected to my computer. It is a little over 5 years old and has not 'popped' but the audio coming through the speakers crackles. A lot. I've even replaced some of the speakers thinking those speakers were old (they really were) but the crackling persists. On every channel. The computer is connected via fiber optic cable so interference from it is unlikely.
Note that all electronic equipment I have are surge suppressed. Not that it's a guarantee against electrical surge damage but it helps. Also note that no other electrical equipment in the house sustained loss at the same time the Onkyo receivers have failed.

Before I hunt for yet another replacement receiver should I no longer consider Onkyo hardware? Does anyone have luck getting these to last longer than 5 years? Not that I mind the joy of new hardware every so often but I really don't want to do this dance every few years.
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post #2 of 9 Old 11-13-2014, 09:33 AM
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Onkyo AV receivers do have a reputation for high failure rates, primarily because of HDMI boards. Most of the major brand AV receivers are on the junky side these days as the manufacturers race to the bottom of the price ladder. I'm holding on happily to my 8 year old AVR. If I had to replace it, I would likely choose a Yamaha which has a far better reputation for reliability than Onkyo.
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post #3 of 9 Old 07-20-2019, 11:49 AM
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My Onkyo went tits up at the 8.5 year mark. Reliability has been a struggle for Onkyo.


My expectations are that a receiver should last at least 10 years. Onkyos have tons of features, but I would take durability over features. I just replaced my Onkyo with a Pioneer (now owned by Onkyo). Hopefully it will have better durability.
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post #4 of 9 Old 07-20-2019, 11:52 AM
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Onkyos are about half the price of similar Yamahas so if they last half the time, it is great for me. Technology moves fast.
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post #5 of 9 Old 07-20-2019, 03:29 PM
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My 2001 Integra DTR still runs about 3 hours a day 7 days a week without issue. Arc back from my 4k tv via optical still works perfect too. I did just lose the L channel on my zone 2 Integra amp last week but not bad for being 17+ years old.

Agree with everyone here, Yamaha is known for being #1 in reliability but they do cost more and their lower end offerings have far less features than Onkyo.
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post #6 of 9 Old 07-20-2019, 05:37 PM
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To play devil's advocate, you didn't describe how the receivers are placed. Is there ample room for heat dissipation or are they vulnerable to any other sort of physical risk?

I have an SR607 that I've owned for almost 10 years. It needed the HDMI capacitors replaced at the 7 year mark (I gave it poor ventilation and the replacement cost me like $10 and 45 minutes), but that was almost 3 years ago and it's still rolling strong in my living room
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post #7 of 9 Old 07-21-2019, 06:31 AM
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I repair Onkyo's as a hobby (over 100 units repaired). As noted in this thread they have had a couple of issues in recent memory - HDMI DSP chip failure and HDMI capacitor failure. In their defense, the HDMI DSP chip failure wasn't their fault, it was their supplier (TI) and Onkyo/Integra did step up to extend the warranty for affected customers. The HDMI capacitor failure was caused by heat degrading the capacitors that supply power to the HDMI board. This one can be caused by poor ventilation but ultimately, Onkyo bears some responsibility since they are the people who laid out the board and often didn't install a fan (most designs have a provision for a fan but Onkyo didn't install it, likely to save cost).


In your case, I would strongly suspect that you have some failing capacitors in the amplification circuit.


The big issue with Onkyo's WRAT technology is that it generates a pile of heat. Even with good air circulation, their designs can get very hot. Unfortunately, heat erodes electrolytic capacitors and there are a couple of places in the Onkyo WRAT designs where this causes issues on the Amp side. On both of your units the issue is likely the failure of one of these capacitors on the pre-amp board. This board sits very close to the main transistors so it is subjected to a lot of heat. What Onkyo should have done is to have used capacitors rated for higher heat in this area but again, this would increase the cost. The capacitors Onkyo uses are rated at 85 degrees Celsius. When I repair them, I upgrade these caps to versions rated for 105 degrees.


On both units the capacitors causing the issue are likely C5010 (FL), C5011 (FR), C5012 (C), C5013 (SL), C5014 (SR), C5015 (SBL) and/or C5016 (SBR). Each of these is a 47uF/50v "Audio" rated capacitor.


There are actually 3 47uF/50V capacitors on each pre-amp channel and all of them can fail due to heat so I typically replace them all. The one I think is causing the "crackling" is used as a filter for the incoming signal but the other 2 sit right in the middle of the pre-amp circuit. When either of these two blow they usually cause the main transistors to fry as well (along with a couple of other transistors and a couple of resistors).


I know this isn't good news and while Onkyo bears some responsibility for these failures (by using lower heat ratings and removing the fans from the design), the root cause is usually that the owner has placed the receiver in a location with poor air circulation. This can be a problem for any amplifier regardless of brand (I have fixed NAD, Pioneer, Yamaha and Harmon Kardon amps that also got too hot)



If it makes you feel any better, what got me into this hobby was the failure of my SR605. It worked perfectly for 4 years in a well ventilated environment but then we moved. In our new home I didn't have space to allow air flow around it and shoved it into the bottom of the TV stand with about 3/8" of air space on top. Making matters worse, my new DirectTV remote no longer offered the ability to power off the amp so I simply left it on 100% of the time. The poor amp ran like this for 5 years before it finally blew. I found 3 failed amp circuits, completely degraded HDMI board capacitors as well as other components that supplied power to the main cpu and DAC circuits. This sucker took me almost 6 months to completely diagnose and fix all the issues. Point is that it can happen to anyone.


Any replacement amp from any manufacturer will have issues if you don't supply at least 8 inches of free air space above the Receiver and on the sides.


HTH
Todd
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post #8 of 9 Old 07-21-2019, 07:47 AM - Thread Starter
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Wow did we really dredge up my five year old thread? How fun! LOL



Alright since we're here...
All of my receivers have been placed with good ventilation. Either by way of not being restricted or in the case of an enclosed, restricted environment cooling fans have been installed. For example the 727 that replace that old 706 has been in an enclosed entertainment center with four fans mounted in back in push/pull. There's also a temp sensor near the back so that I can keep a bit of an eye on what's going on with it. They're also all on electrical protection. I generally spring for a new, beefy surge suppressor whenever I get a new receiver. Probably not necessary but I do it anyway, maybe for peace of mind.



The end result with the 506 was a sound card that had gone bad in the PC. That particular 506 is in fact sitting next to me still running like a champ! My home office is in the basement where it's cool and the unit sits in the open, unimpeded.


With the 706 I eventually pulled it apart to see if I could find the culprit and perhaps replace the board with the failed components. I was never able to find the failed components and since I had already replaced it with the 727 decided it went onto the recycle heap at work.




Not really sure if I'd replace any of my Onkyo receivers with another Onkyo. The 727 was supposed to be a 'network' receiver and at a minimum I should be able to control the receiver via an app on my phone. That connection has worked about 40% of the time. The best times to get it working are after a complete power cycle at the power strip level. Then the app seems to work for a few days. If I had to get a similar level receiver I might opt for a Yamaha however when I replaced my old Polk Audio speakers with some Revel Performa 3 bookshelf speakers the thought had occurred to me that I need to step up that game too and eventually get external amps and a better receiver to match. One of these days...


Anyway, thanks for the input. Even five years later!
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post #9 of 9 Old 07-21-2019, 10:13 AM
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Todd,


Thanks for the info. My Onkyo did not have so much space around it. I placed an Antek fan on top of it.

Since my AVR is in a closed space, what if I simply bought a regular fan and kept it blasting whenever the unit was on?
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