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post #1 of 13 Old 10-27-2018, 07:35 AM - Thread Starter
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Denon + Monoprice, Ultimate Bang for Buck?

I've been using Pioneer Elite the last several years: SC-67 following by an SC-97. I don't know what it is but it seems over the years the performance degrades substantially. Right now my SC-97 has already been in for HDMI repair once and it looks like it needs it again. There has to be something wrong with the AMP too because originally that thing would blow my face off when turned up. All that said, I'm totally done with Pioneer/Onyko and I'm looking for a nice setup to replace it separates or receiver. I'm running a 5.2.4 setup with no plans for future channels. Atmos/4KHDR/DTSX all required. Movies is 90% of content, I do tend to play near reference level.

After looking at all the options, I can't seem to talk myself out of a Denon X4400H ($900). I'm a little concerned about power so then I was looking at the Monoprice Monolith - 5 channel x 200W ($1300) amp....I mean that is insane value. Guys, what am I missing here? For $2200 total, I'd get all the modern connectivity and codecs, let the Denon amp handle the 4 Atmos speakers, send the 5 pre-outs to the monolith for true 200W per channel continuous output capability.

At this price point, is there a more optimum power/quality solution? Talk me off the ledge here, I'm about to order.
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post #2 of 13 Old 10-27-2018, 02:08 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Chuckinbeast View Post
I've been using Pioneer Elite the last several years: SC-67 following by an SC-97. I don't know what it is but it seems over the years the performance degrades substantially. Right now my SC-97 has already been in for HDMI repair once and it looks like it needs it again. There has to be something wrong with the AMP too because originally that thing would blow my face off when turned up. All that said, I'm totally done with Pioneer/Onyko and I'm looking for a nice setup to replace it separates or receiver. I'm running a 5.2.4 setup with no plans for future channels. Atmos/4KHDR/DTSX all required. Movies is 90% of content, I do tend to play near reference level.

After looking at all the options, I can't seem to talk myself out of a Denon X4400H ($900). I'm a little concerned about power so then I was looking at the Monoprice Monolith - 5 channel x 200W ($1300) amp....I mean that is insane value. Guys, what am I missing here? For $2200 total, I'd get all the modern connectivity and codecs, let the Denon amp handle the 4 Atmos speakers, send the 5 pre-outs to the monolith for true 200W per channel continuous output capability.

At this price point, is there a more optimum power/quality solution? Talk me off the ledge here, I'm about to order.
I'd either just get the receiver first and see what your power needs are after a few weeks of listening to your normal content at your normal listening levels as $1300 buys one hell of a single subwoofer or a decent subwoofer pair or look at something like this Emotiva for $500 less but with similar power.
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post #3 of 13 Old 10-27-2018, 10:36 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Chuckinbeast View Post
I've been using Pioneer Elite the last several years: SC-67 following by an SC-97. I don't know what it is but it seems over the years the performance degrades substantially. Right now my SC-97 has already been in for HDMI repair once and it looks like it needs it again. There has to be something wrong with the AMP too because originally that thing would blow my face off when turned up. All that said, I'm totally done with Pioneer/Onyko and I'm looking for a nice setup to replace it separates or receiver. I'm running a 5.2.4 setup with no plans for future channels. Atmos/4KHDR/DTSX all required. Movies is 90% of content, I do tend to play near reference level.

After looking at all the options, I can't seem to talk myself out of a Denon X4400H ($900). I'm a little concerned about power so then I was looking at the Monoprice Monolith - 5 channel x 200W ($1300) amp....I mean that is insane value. Guys, what am I missing here? For $2200 total, I'd get all the modern connectivity and codecs, let the Denon amp handle the 4 Atmos speakers, send the 5 pre-outs to the monolith for true 200W per channel continuous output capability.

At this price point, is there a more optimum power/quality solution? Talk me off the ledge here, I'm about to order.

If you are going with an external amplifier then the Marantz SR6012 is likely a better choice than the X4400H. The SR6012 and X4400H are very similar having many of the same circuit boards (power amplifiers digital board, etc.) and same circuit design. The two units also weigh about the same. which in these devices relates to size of the power transformer. The prices of the two units on closeout appear to be similar. The SR6012 has buffers in the RCA outputs (HDAM circuits) that will do a better job of driving the external amplifier channels. In the X4400H the volume control directly drives the RCA outputs, which works, but isn't preferred.
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post #4 of 13 Old 08-14-2019, 08:35 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Chuckinbeast View Post
I've been using Pioneer Elite the last several years: SC-67 following by an SC-97. I don't know what it is but it seems over the years the performance degrades substantially. Right now my SC-97 has already been in for HDMI repair once and it looks like it needs it again. There has to be something wrong with the AMP too because originally that thing would blow my face off when turned up. All that said, I'm totally done with Pioneer/Onyko and I'm looking for a nice setup to replace it separates or receiver. I'm running a 5.2.4 setup with no plans for future channels. Atmos/4KHDR/DTSX all required. Movies is 90% of content, I do tend to play near reference level.

After looking at all the options, I can't seem to talk myself out of a Denon X4400H ($900). I'm a little concerned about power so then I was looking at the Monoprice Monolith - 5 channel x 200W ($1300) amp....I mean that is insane value. Guys, what am I missing here? For $2200 total, I'd get all the modern connectivity and codecs, let the Denon amp handle the 4 Atmos speakers, send the 5 pre-outs to the monolith for true 200W per channel continuous output capability.

At this price point, is there a more optimum power/quality solution? Talk me off the ledge here, I'm about to order.

This is where I am headed as well.

Do Monolith Amps every go on sale or allow coupons? I signed up for their email list a week ago but all I seem to get is accessories on sale that I do not need.
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post #5 of 13 Old 08-15-2019, 05:43 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Chuckinbeast View Post
I'm running a 5.2.4 setup with no plans for future channels. Atmos/4KHDR/DTSX all required. Movies is 90% of content, I do tend to play near reference level.

After looking at all the options, I can't seem to talk myself out of a Denon X4400H ($900). I'm a little concerned about power so then I was looking at the Monoprice Monolith - 5 channel x 200W ($1300) amp....I mean that is insane value. Guys, what am I missing here? For $2200 total, I'd get all the modern connectivity and codecs, let the Denon amp handle the 4 Atmos speakers, send the 5 pre-outs to the monolith for true 200W per channel continuous output capability.

At this price point, is there a more optimum power/quality solution? Talk me off the ledge here, I'm about to order.
Given you listen near reference level and assuming you have relatively inefficient speakers, this will be a great setup. I'm using the X4300 with ATI amps (ATI apparently builds the Monoliths) and the system sounds incredible. That being said, I don't think the amps improve or degrade the sound in any way versus running all channels via the AVRs internal amps.

I didn't necessarily need both an ATI 200W x 5 and a 180W x 7 but I got a great deal on them buying used. I went this route after loud listening sessions when, using just the internal AVR amps, the AVR went into self-protective shutdown. I wasn't going to let that happen again.
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post #6 of 13 Old 08-15-2019, 08:18 AM
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if you get the 4400, get an AC Infinity fan as well. they run hot

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post #7 of 13 Old 08-15-2019, 10:38 AM
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Originally Posted by smithsabom View Post
if you get the 4400, get an AC Infinity fan as well. they run hot

He shouldn't need a fan if he is using an external amp, though, no...?
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post #8 of 13 Old 08-15-2019, 12:30 PM
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@Chuckinbeast I believe the x4400 is a step above the sr6012. The hdam circuits are more for cleaner musical playback, iirc. @jdsmoothie will have to confirm!

I don't use external amplification nor do I listen at reference levels, but if I did I would get more power, just because

I do use an external usb 80mm fan for my old Integra gear, but again, just a precaution!
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post #9 of 13 Old 08-15-2019, 12:51 PM
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Originally Posted by 355F1 View Post
He shouldn't need a fan if he is using an external amp, though, no...?
my 4500x still runs pretty warm but doesn't have much ventilation. I only use it for 4 Atmos speakers and use a Cinepro amp for the rest.
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post #10 of 13 Old 08-15-2019, 01:08 PM
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Originally Posted by Craig Woodhall View Post
my 4500x still runs pretty warm but doesn't have much ventilation. I only use it for 4 Atmos speakers and use a Cinepro amp for the rest.
Fair 'nough!
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post #11 of 13 Old 08-15-2019, 01:13 PM
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Fair 'nough!
for me it was more of a preventative thing, but i only have 1/2 inch on each side and just enough to fit the cooler above.. works great.
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post #12 of 13 Old 08-16-2019, 06:24 AM
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Originally Posted by bigguyca View Post
If you are going with an external amplifier then the Marantz SR6012 is likely a better choice than the X4400H. The SR6012 and X4400H are very similar having many of the same circuit boards (power amplifiers digital board, etc.) and same circuit design. The two units also weigh about the same. which in these devices relates to size of the power transformer. The prices of the two units on closeout appear to be similar. The SR6012 has buffers in the RCA outputs (HDAM circuits) that will do a better job of driving the external amplifier channels. In the X4400H the volume control directly drives the RCA outputs, which works, but isn't preferred.
I run the marantz 7704 with a monolith amp. Works great, sounds great. I also prefer Marantz over Denon.
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post #13 of 13 Old 08-16-2019, 09:27 AM
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Originally Posted by Craig Woodhall View Post
my 4500x still runs pretty warm but doesn't have much ventilation.
https://www.acinfinity.com came to my friend's rescue, auto-speed from temperature sensing, he loves it.
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