From Denon to Marantz: Personal Review - AVS Forum | Home Theater Discussions And Reviews
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post #1 of 29 Old 12-10-2016, 06:05 AM - Thread Starter
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From Denon to Marantz: Personal Review

Thought I would share my opinion on my recent upgrade, a Marantz SR-7010 replacing my Denon AVR-X4200.

I don't want to be stoned to death for saying this but in my case, it has been a life changing experience. Every aspects of the sound improved drastically, imaging got a lot better, there is now a sens of 3 dimensions that I did not have before. Watching Jason Bourn last night in DTS:X was pretty epic. Bass is also more precise and on top of that, it also digs deeper. I felt before like Audyssey was cutting excessively the bottom end, not the case anymore!

I also revisited material like Generation Kill, which sounded cold and thin before. Completely different now! Very rich midrange, thick sound that I did not have before.

Just so you know, I have been running both receiver in the same fashion, Audyssey Reference, DEQ on, DVLM off. Calibration has been done the same way.

I know that it is a debated topic, but for me, these two amps are far from sounding the same. I highly doubt that it is placebo since I have been running Denon for 2.5 years and well aware of it's sound in my room. When I did the switch, it was to go full Atmos. I did not expect a sound difference since they are owned by the same group.

There has to be something that causes this, different DSP, better DAC, better components?

Let's have a fight about it
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post #2 of 29 Old 12-10-2016, 06:20 AM
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Placebo through and through...

Turn off EQ

Level match

And do a blind test with a group of friends.

Learn...

Your stock Audyssey mic is different assuming everything else is the same read the below.


https://www.avsforum.com/forum/90-rec...xt32-mics.html

https://www.avsforum.com/forum/90-rec...nsas-city.html


If you can't do any of that blind testing hook your old Denon AVR back up and use your new Maratz Audyssey mic on the Denon and rerun an Audyssey calibration.


I'm sorry I'm being so direct but frankly I'm tired of reading stuff like this. There's a very simple explanation and it's not that the amp section of two sister companies sounds dramatically different (or at all different)
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post #3 of 29 Old 12-10-2016, 08:19 AM
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I'm with @Archaea

Check out this thread: https://www.avsforum.com/forum/90-rec...l#post48854905

I couldn't hear the difference between a $4,000 Marantz 8802 pre/pro vs. my Denon AVR-X4200 using the same amp with instant A/B switching.

As Archea mentioned, something else has changed in terms of your calibration. No way there is that big of a difference. On the other hand, if it sounds great to you, that's all that matters!

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post #4 of 29 Old 12-10-2016, 02:02 PM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by zorax2 View Post
I'm with @Archaea

On the other hand, if it sounds great to you, that's all that matters!
Exactly, I'm a happy camper!

Don't have the 4200 anymore, sold it so cannot do a direct A-B comparaison. With the Denon I was feeling an urgency to upgrade speakers. Now, not really. I found (sort of) the rich sound I was looking for. If it's in my head, then so be it! I'm saving $5-7000
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post #5 of 29 Old 12-10-2016, 02:09 PM
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Congrats and love the room
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post #6 of 29 Old 12-10-2016, 02:17 PM
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D&M, Marantz' parent company = Denon & Marantz. They share R&D and a lot of the hardware is the same. You probably already noticed the menu structure between them are similar. Their cases look different but the guts are nearly identical across product lines. Not sure where the Marantz 7000 series fits into the Denon X4200 series, maybe a step higher.

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post #7 of 29 Old 12-10-2016, 03:20 PM
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The Marantz receivers have Hyper Dynamic Amplifier Module (HDAM) offers improved dynamic range and detail while reducing noise.

So maybe that makes it sound better? Otherwise the feature set on the 7010 is comparable to the Denon x6200.

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post #8 of 29 Old 12-10-2016, 04:32 PM
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When was the last time you had run Audyssey on the Denon? Any updates to the room/acoustics since then?
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post #9 of 29 Old 12-11-2016, 10:12 PM
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The HDAM's in the Marantz are different. There is a difference. Read the threads on the Marantz 7702 MKII and the 7703 prepro. More detail than the Marantz AVR threads. It is a much discussed issue.
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post #10 of 29 Old 12-12-2016, 03:51 AM
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Originally Posted by afrogt View Post
The Marantz receivers have Hyper Dynamic Amplifier Module (HDAM) offers improved dynamic range and detail while reducing noise.

So maybe that makes it sound better? Otherwise the feature set on the 7010 is comparable to the Denon x6200.
Although having 2 more amps, more comparable feature wise to the X4200W while the X6200W has better quality amps, some better components, a true Dialog Enhancer setting, and also mfr'd in Japan like the D+M flagship X7200WA.
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post #11 of 29 Old 12-12-2016, 04:19 AM
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Every aspects of the sound improved drastically, imaging got a lot better, there is now a sens of 3 dimensions that I did not have before.
I had the same experience myself. After ~6 years and three different Denon receivers I moved to a 7000 series Marantz receiver. I also noticed an obvious difference to the tonal quality of the sound. For me it was more pronounced with music, and the sound of the Marantz has been very pleasing to my ears for all music listening. Beyond that, I found the menu setup and navigation to be better on the Marantz. I've said it many times before, I will never go back to Denon.
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post #12 of 29 Old 12-12-2016, 05:40 AM - Thread Starter
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When was the last time you had run Audyssey on the Denon? Any updates to the room/acoustics since then?
I had run Audyssey a week before selling it (about 2 weeks ago). I get more depth with the Marantz. Again, it might just be my imagination, but I doubt it since I am use to the Denon having them for 2 years.

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post #13 of 29 Old 12-12-2016, 05:56 AM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by lukeamdman View Post
When was the last time you had run Audyssey on the Denon? Any updates to the room/acoustics since then?
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Originally Posted by zorax2 View Post
I'm with @Archaea

Check out this thread: https://www.avsforum.com/forum/90-rec...l#post48854905

On the other hand, my 14 year old son consistently heard a difference. Five out of five times for both non-Audyssey (blind) and with Audyssey (blind as I ran the controls from my equipment closet) he identified the 8802 as sounding better to him. He said you could only hear it with certain notes but the difference was in the higher vocal frequencies. It wasn’t necessarily easy for him to discern the difference though. Each time we did this, he listened to the music for at least two minutes and required anywhere from three to seven switches between sources before he identified the 8802 as being “superior”. I asked him if he thought the 8802 was louder (people typically pick the louder source) but he claimed again that he could hear the difference in the higher frequencies and felt more depth (my interpretation from his explanation). I’m curious as to how many middle aged men, like those who most frequently visit this forum and can afford this gear, could also hear that very, very subtle difference my son noted?
Don't know about the 8802 but this is what I am experiencing with my 7010 (I am in my twenties).
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post #14 of 29 Old 12-12-2016, 06:09 AM
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Your bundled stock Audyssey mic has an allowed tolerance of +-2.5db.

That can be a 5dB swing. 😳
Think how much a 5dB swing in the treble or bass could change your impression of the sound. As I said in the linked thread above I never liked my Onkyo 5508 Audyssey sound. I bought a Denon 4520 and loved the Audyssey sound. The Denon had to be sent back for repair. I set the 5508 back up using the Denon mic and found it sounded the exact same as the Denon. I reset Audyssey back up several times using those two mice and found I unanimously preferred the sound the Denon mic made. The mics were the same model number. I measured them with a calibrated omnimic and mic stands for consistency. I saw a big deviation. That was the source of the sound I preferred, not the AVR.

If comparing two different AVR's Audyssey EQ setup you've got to use the same mic, and the same exact eight positions as measurement sources. And carefully verify level matching. Otherwise the comparison has 0 merit.

Period.

To be 100% accurate the comparison should be done with EQ off, strict level matching, and instant switching.

Your AVR amp and modern electronics are typically +-.5dB or better.
http://www.soundandvision.com/conten...W4p53IQMQM8.97

That should tell you all you need to know.

As notnyt said if the AVR amps measure different enough to sound different without EQ something is broken.

Simply put, this comparison is flawed.

Different AVRs setup different days with different mics and likely eight uncontrolled source positions for the autoeq run.. Audyssey EQ engaged for tests. Was strict level matching engaged? You can't trust that MLV -10dB equals -10dB on each AVR after Audyssey runs. You need an external SPL calibration tool to verify. That's why I linked the AVR comparison thread I did. Supposed reference calibrations varied in SPL by over 10dB between AutoEQ runs on about 8 different AVRs.
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post #15 of 29 Old 12-12-2016, 06:38 AM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Archaea View Post
Your bundled stock Audyssey mic has an allowed tolerance of +-2.5db.

That can be a 5dB swing. 😳
Think how much a 5dB swing in the treble or bass could change your impression of the sound. As I said in the linked thread above I never liked my Onkyo 5508 Audyssey sound. I bought a Denon 4520 and loved the Audyssey sound. The Denon had to be sent back for repair. I set the 5508 back up using the Denon mic and found it sounded the exact same as the Denon. I reset Audyssey back up several times using those two mice and found I unanimously preferred the sound the Denon mic made. The mics were the same model number. I measured them with a calibrated omnimic and mic stands for consistency. I saw a big deviation. That was the source of the sound I preferred, not the AVR.

If comparing two different AVR's Audyssey EQ setup you've got to use the same mic, and the same exact eight positions as measurement sources. And carefully verify level matching. Otherwise the comparison has 0 merit.

Period.

To be 100% accurate the comparison should be done with EQ off, strict level matching, and instant switching.

Your AVR amp and modern electronics are typically +-.5dB or better.
http://www.soundandvision.com/conten...W4p53IQMQM8.97

That should tell you all you need to know.

As notnyt said if the AVR amps measure different enough to sound different without EQ something is broken.

Simply put, this comparison is flawed.

Different AVRs setup different days with different mics and likely eight uncontrolled source positions for the autoeq run.. Audyssey EQ engaged for tests. Was strict level matching engaged? You can't trust that MLV -10dB equals -10dB on each AVR after Audyssey runs. You need an external SPL calibration tool to verify. That's why I linked the AVR comparison thread I did. Supposed reference calibrations varied in SPL by over 10dB between AutoEQ runs on about 8 different AVRs.
Knowing you probably ran Audyssey 100,000 times, what mic positions for a regular couch (100" width) worked the best for you?

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post #16 of 29 Old 12-12-2016, 08:10 AM
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Knowing you probably ran Audyssey 100,000 times, what mic positions for a regular couch (100" width) worked the best for you?
Tricky question...


Know this...


AUTO EQing for a single position requires you keep the grouping of mic positions close. I think the Audyssey thread here on AVSforum says no more than 1' apart for optimizing a single seat. When you autoEQ for a single seat like that - it is to the very likely detriment of other seats. For instance. Let's say in that primary seat you have a null at 90hz and the autoEQ routine bumps 90hz by 5dB to correct it. Let's then imagine in this scenario that the other side of the couch actually has a 3dB mode at 90hz. So it's already 3dB too strong in that seat based wholly on speaker and seat placement and room dimensions. Well the single seat focused autoEQ routine just added 5dB more to 90hz, so now it's 8dB hot in that alternate listing position at 90hz.


So that's why I say it's a bit of a tricky question - or a balancing scenario.


Primarily EQ'ing for a single seat is to the likely detriment of the other seats.


To EQ more broadly - you'll want to increase the distance of the measurement positions - so that the calibrated average EQ'ed adjustments take into account more of the listening positions.


You'll have to decide what your preference is there.


Best practice is to forgo measurements in any seats that are close to a boundary, (the seat against the wall, or not often sat in should be skipped). In my fairly large, open room, my best results have been to calibrate for the primary listening position, and about 1/3 into each of the other two flanking listening positions in the positions prescribed by Audyssey. (I use the chair stitching seams to place the mic for consistency). I'm primarily EQ'ing for my main three seats with a heavy focus on the main seat. I primarily watch movies alone, or with my wife and family that wouldn't care about the nuances of the audio. If I invite a friend over I give them the main listening position. Remember to place the Audyssey mic on a mic stand at typical ear level (even at the proper recline position if your chairs recline) for your first position of course.


Remember if you are EQ'ing multiple disparate positions --- you're developing an average EQ, so a single mic position won't measure the best -- but the overall parity between all the seats will be improved. You'll not have the fancy flat graph in your main listening position, but your multiple seat position audience might have the most balanced/similar listening experience.
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post #17 of 29 Old 12-12-2016, 09:09 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Archaea View Post
Your bundled stock Audyssey mic has an allowed tolerance of +-2.5db.

That can be a 5dB swing. 😳
Think how much a 5dB swing in the treble or bass could change your impression of the sound. As I said in the linked thread above I never liked my Onkyo 5508 Audyssey sound. I bought a Denon 4520 and loved the Audyssey sound. The Denon had to be sent back for repair. I set the 5508 back up using the Denon mic and found it sounded the exact same as the Denon. I reset Audyssey back up several times using those two mice and found I unanimously preferred the sound the Denon mic made. The mics were the same model number. I measured them with a calibrated omnimic and mic stands for consistency. I saw a big deviation. That was the source of the sound I preferred, not the AVR.

If comparing two different AVR's Audyssey EQ setup you've got to use the same mic, and the same exact eight positions as measurement sources. And carefully verify level matching. Otherwise the comparison has 0 merit.

Period.

To be 100% accurate the comparison should be done with EQ off, strict level matching, and instant switching.

Your AVR amp and modern electronics are typically +-.5dB or better.
http://www.soundandvision.com/conten...W4p53IQMQM8.97

That should tell you all you need to know.

As notnyt said if the AVR amps measure different enough to sound different without EQ something is broken.

Simply put, this comparison is flawed.

Different AVRs setup different days with different mics and likely eight uncontrolled source positions for the autoeq run.. Audyssey EQ engaged for tests. Was strict level matching engaged? You can't trust that MLV -10dB equals -10dB on each AVR after Audyssey runs. You need an external SPL calibration tool to verify. That's why I linked the AVR comparison thread I did. Supposed reference calibrations varied in SPL by over 10dB between AutoEQ runs on about 8 different AVRs.

Be careful...
A few years back a significant qty batch of out-of-spec Audyssey microphones got shipped with AVRs into the market place. The microphone is sourced through a designated Audyssey subcontractor and apparently this factory lost control of the production process... Some microphones were out-of-spec by > 7dB..
By the time this was discovered many, many AVRs were shipped with defective microphones. Note that this was never disclosed to the outside but since we are active on the AVR sourcing side we knew about it.

An out-of-spec microphone will result in corrupted rests..

Just my $0.02...
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post #18 of 29 Old 12-12-2016, 09:42 AM
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Thought I would share my opinion on my recent upgrade, a Marantz SR-7010 replacing my Denon AVR-X4200.

I don't want to be stoned to death for saying this but in my case, it has been a life changing experience. Every aspects of the sound improved drastically, imaging got a lot better, there is now a sens of 3 dimensions that I did not have before. Watching Jason Bourn last night in DTS:X was pretty epic. Bass is also more precise and on top of that, it also digs deeper. I felt before like Audyssey was cutting excessively the bottom end, not the case anymore!

I also revisited material like Generation Kill, which sounded cold and thin before. Completely different now! Very rich midrange, thick sound that I did not have before.

Just so you know, I have been running both receiver in the same fashion, Audyssey Reference, DEQ on, DVLM off. Calibration has been done the same way.

I know that it is a debated topic, but for me, these two amps are far from sounding the same. I highly doubt that it is placebo since I have been running Denon for 2.5 years and well aware of it's sound in my room. When I did the switch, it was to go full Atmos. I did not expect a sound difference since they are owned by the same group.

There has to be something that causes this, different DSP, better DAC, better components?

Let's have a fight about it

On another note, a great looking room, love the color theme, well done. I also like that you chose a comfy couch for your sitting position.
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post #19 of 29 Old 12-12-2016, 12:50 PM
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Here's a video, taken in my room for a thread regarding another subject entirely, that will help visualize why not having controlled identical mic positions for one Audyssey run vs. another (even if using the same mic)(assuming trying to fairly compare two different Audyssey runs)) can really mess with your calibration/the eq'ed results.


This video just shows real time frequency response captures - look how much the measured FR varies by fairly minimally moving the calibrated microphone.
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post #20 of 29 Old 12-12-2016, 03:04 PM
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It may be in my head also, but I recently switched from a D 2113ci to a M sr6010 and feel the 6010 sounds significantly better.

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post #21 of 29 Old 12-12-2016, 03:09 PM
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It may be in my head also, but I recently switched from a D 2113ci to a M sr6010 and feel the 6010 sounds significantly better.
I'm sure the SR6010 does sound better than the 2113CI as it uses Audyssey Platinum XT32 which is much better than you previously had.
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post #22 of 29 Old 12-13-2016, 12:50 AM
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Be careful...
A few years back a significant qty batch of out-of-spec Audyssey microphones got shipped with AVRs into the market place.
Is there a way to check if we have a bad mic?

PS. Onkyo 818 owner
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post #23 of 29 Old 12-13-2016, 07:59 AM
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aftermarket mic?

So is this variance in the stock mics something you have to live with? Or can you buy a cheap but better aftermarket mic to use with Audssey platinum or YPAO? Looking for best Atmos and DTS-X sound out of my AVR. I, too, am torn between the RX A-2060 and the SR7010.... the price difference is $100 more for the 2060, so that is not a deciding factor.

I have an odd shaped room and mostly Klipsch speakers (with rear def tech small surrounds)... so due to budget I had to mix and match the speakers, I cannot afford another $600 or more for a second set of Klipsch 8" ceilings right now so I have the 440 center, RF 80 towers, (2) 8" Klipcsh RF ceilings and a 10" Klipsch ref sub, with (2) small def tech surrounds at ear level on the sides and 2 more near the ceiling angled down (my couch HAS to be back against the rear wall)... its not an impressive setup but want to do the best i can and hopefully get a dedicated room in the near future.
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post #24 of 29 Old 12-13-2016, 08:23 AM
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its usually pretty easy to work backwards to get the result you want. when I buy something its not because everything sounds the same.

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post #25 of 29 Old 12-13-2016, 11:04 AM
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Originally Posted by barty88 View Post
So is this variance in the stock mics something you have to live with? Or can you buy a cheap but better aftermarket mic to use with Audssey platinum or YPAO? Looking for best Atmos and DTS-X sound out of my AVR. I, too, am torn between the RX A-2060 and the SR7010.... the price difference is $100 more for the 2060, so that is not a deciding factor.

I have an odd shaped room and mostly Klipsch speakers (with rear def tech small surrounds)... so due to budget I had to mix and match the speakers, I cannot afford another $600 or more for a second set of Klipsch 8" ceilings right now so I have the 440 center, RF 80 towers, (2) 8" Klipcsh RF ceilings and a 10" Klipsch ref sub, with (2) small def tech surrounds at ear level on the sides and 2 more near the ceiling angled down (my couch HAS to be back against the rear wall)... its not an impressive setup but want to do the best i can and hopefully get a dedicated room in the near future.
I too am torn between these two receivers and recently added the Onkyo RZ-1100 into the mix. Did you make a decision on which you are going to be buying ? Currently I am leaning towards the Yamaha
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post #26 of 29 Old 12-13-2016, 12:57 PM - Thread Starter
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I too am torn between these two receivers and recently added the Onkyo RZ-1100 into the mix. Did you make a decision on which you are going to be buying ? Currently I am leaning towards the Yamaha
Although I own a Yamaha and really like the sound, I opted for the Marantz SR-7010 to give me the ability to go for a full 7.2.4 and for possibility to setup two subwoofers independently.

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post #27 of 29 Old 12-13-2016, 04:26 PM
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post #28 of 29 Old 12-13-2016, 05:13 PM - Thread Starter
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I think this is definitely a factor in your experience between the Denon and Marantz:

https://www.avsforum.com/forum/90-rec...crophones.html
Probably a good reason why...

On another topic, just looked at your 8x 21" sealed build. WTF!!!?? That must be insane!!! I would die for a demo.
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post #29 of 29 Old 12-13-2016, 09:00 PM
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Probably a good reason why...

On another topic, just looked at your 8x 21" sealed build. WTF!!!?? That must be insane!!! I would die for a demo.
Don't forget about the Othorns too.

And yes, no matter how far away you live, it's worth a trip to hear a demo! Speaking from experience . . .
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