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Discussion Starter #1
There has been quite a bit of debate on which receiver is better. On paper it seems like the 875 has an edge of 3808 on paper but we won't really know until . I currently own a Denon 3805 and I'm about to get a Rotel 1095 amp for my setup by the end of this week.


I've always enjoyed the warm Denon sound but the new Onkyo is THX Ultra certified which is the same with Rotel 1095 I think. I'm doing 50% movie and 50% music at the moment. Which receiver should I go for as pre-amp.


My gear:


Denon 3805

Oppo 971H

Rega Apollo

B&W DM603S3

B&W LCR600

B&W DM602S3

SVS PB12-Plus

Panasonic AE-900U

Rotel 1095 (coming soon)
 

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You might also want to consider the pre-amp version of the Onkyo 905, also known as the Integra DTR-9.8. More information in this post , with pictures in this post .


From what's been reported, the DTR-9.8 preamp is basically a 905 without the amp section or streaming audio for $1600 MSRP . It does add balanced connections.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
bfdtv, Thanks for that info, looks like it's something I should look into a bit more. Is Integra a sister company of Onkyo?


I've never heard Onkyo receiver or Integra pre-amp before so I not sure what it sounds like in comparison to Denon.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by jon1 /forum/post/0


There has been quite a bit of debate on which receiver is better. On paper it seems like the 875 has an edge of 3808 on paper but we won't really know until . I currently own a Denon 3805 and I'm about to get a Rotel 1095 amp for my setup by the end of this week.


I've always enjoyed the warm Denon sound but the new Onkyo is THX Ultra certified which is the same with Rotel 1095 I think. I'm doing 50% movie and 50% music at the moment. Which receiver should I go for as pre-amp.


My gear:


Denon 3805

Oppo 971H

Rega Apollo

B&W DM603S3

B&W LCR600

B&W DM602S3

SVS PB12-Plus

Panasonic AE-900U

Rotel 1095 (coming soon)

before you buy your amp.....check out sunfire... allot of the B&W dealers sell Sunfire amps. see if you can do a side by side comparison..they are about the same coin and I think you will like the sunfire.... but thats my opinion
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by jon1 /forum/post/0


bfdtv, Thanks for that info, looks like it's something I should look into a bit more. Is Integra a sister company of Onkyo?


I've never heard Onkyo receiver or Integra pre-amp before so I not sure what it sounds like in comparison to Denon.

Integra is to Onkyo as ES is to Sony. There only sold by high-end dealers.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Filthy McNasty /forum/post/0


When you start thinking about spending $1600 - it's time to look at the upcoming NAD T175 prepro - the bottom rung of the next step up.

At least on paper, the NAD T175 doesn't appear to be in the same league with the Integra.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by sjv /forum/post/0


Integra is to Onkyo as ES is to Sony. There only sold by high-end dealers.


Not quite that drastic though. Sonys lower line home audio products are typically junk. Onkyos and Integra products are typically made with the same components. Integra may add a few features for the custom installer, but overall a Onkyo model and its sister Integra model are essentially the same.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
thanks guys for all your inputs, the concept of Onkyo & Integra is quite interesting to me, why would they have two different brands when the components in the pre-pro are identical to each other? I personally don't see Denon or yahama go down that route.


I've heard good things about sunfire amp but problem is I can't find a dealer here in New Zealand so I can't do much about that.


As to NAD T175, It doens't look like it's the future-proof pre-pro I'm after, although by reputation, music playback might be better then onkyo, denon etc..


Anyway, I put the rotel amp on hold for now as I've been advice to look around a bit more. I'll might looking into things like upgrade speakers (Rega R5 fronts and 2*R1 Surrounds maybe) and/or intergrate a pre-owned Naim stereo system to run the front L/R channel (Denon 3805 -(front L/R channel pre-out)-> Naim pre-amp NAC62 -> Naim power amp NAP90 -> L/R speakers, the rest of channels will be powered from the denon 3805 amp).
 

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Had an interesting experience at a Hi-Fi shop a couple of weeks ago. Was driving by with a CD of "Beuna Vista Social Club" and a DVD of "Batman Begins". Thought I may as well drop in and do a receiver shootout. After waiting forever to get into their upper-middle-range listening room, we started by comparing the Yamaha RX-V2700 to the Marantz SR-6001. "It's warmer and more spacious", said the sales droid of the Marantz. "Yes", said I. "It's wired out of phase".

To cut a long story short, I proceeded to stuff around for about half an hour or so until I had the Marantz SR-6001, the SR-5001, the SR-4001, the Yamaha RX-V2700, the RX-V1700, a NAD T763 and the new Onkyo TX-SR605 all wired up to a handful of speakers in the $700 to $3500 price-range. Before that, almost everything was either out of phase, switched left-to-right, with speakers misplaced, volume and balance misaligned, and all the wrong surround modes activated. (By this time, the sales-droid had disappeared, never to return. I closed the door behind him.)


But T-H-I-S is the interesting bit - switching instantly between all the above receivers.......ZERO difference. Nada. Maybe 3% if I really tried hard to pick a difference, but even that would require some imagination. I actually had to look at the switcher display to make sure I'd switched! The good news, I suppose, is that all were sonically neutral.


I currently have a NAD T163 pre-amp/processor at home (with Rotel power amps). Also a tiny Creek OBH-22 passive pre-amp for 2-channel music. Before that, I owned the highly-overrated Rotel 1066 pre, and before that, a Denon AVR-3802. About six months ago, I had an opportunity to shoot out the newer Denon 3806 against my NAD.


My (subjective) conclusions are this...

* When it comes to MODERN receivers and pre-pros anywhere in this price-range, Yamaha, Marantz, Onkyo NAD and Rotel all sound as good as identical.

* The Denons are ALMOST identical, but definitely have a tad more emphasis on the top end... maybe 5%, if that?

* My 2-channel Creek passive pre-amp is maybe 10-20% better than any of them. By "better", I mean marginally more transparent - less electronic, less "compressed", and with almost zero noise floor. But still - except for the Denons, all these brands have the same sonic "signature" as the Creek passive - no more or less bassy, toppy or mid-rangey, and hence all "neutral".


Personally, I'd be getting the Onkyo TX-SR875. Feature, sound and price-wise, it's unbeatable.


Hope this helps.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Electric_Haggis /forum/post/10974276


Personally, I'd be getting the Onkyo TX-SR875. Feature, sound and price-wise, it's unbeatable.

The only fault of the 875 that I can find is the lack of an Audyssey FLAT curve. The Denons have this, Onkyo for some reason left it out. Nuts. Many people in the Integra 9.8 thread (very similar guts to the 875, minus the amps) are bummed that the Onkyo lacks this FLAT setting for Audyssey (and many are also bummed that the Reon settings menu is missing).
 

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just hooked up my denon 3808 output to zone 2 to play my

squeezebox into 2 speakers into the bedroom + 7 speakers in

my living room. So far it works fine.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by RobertoD /forum/post/11705745


The only fault of the 875 that I can find is the lack of an Audyssey FLAT curve. The Denons have this, Onkyo for some reason left it out. Nuts. Many people in the Integra 9.8 thread (very similar guts to the 875, minus the amps) are bummed that the Onkyo lacks this FLAT setting for Audyssey (and many are also bummed that the Reon settings menu is missing).

The 875 also lacks Dynamic EQ and Volume, which are must-haves for many people.



After much deliberating, I finally replaced my NAD T163 pre-pro with a Denon 2809. Power amps are Rotel. Click on my signature below to see the rest of the system.




Just a few points I though I'd like to chuck in...



1. I was vexing over whether to go with a 3808 or the newer 2809, with the DACs being the only real sonic difference between them. I'm now unconvinced that a 3808 would sound any better as a pre-pro.


2. The 2809, when A-B compared to the NAD, sounds so identical that I gave up testing after about 15 minutes.


3. An older 3805, when swapped in with the NAD back in 2006, sounded similarly identical - no more or less transparent.


4. I had an opportunity to swap in an Onkyo 705 as well. I was shocked to find that its sound was noticably cheap and "brittle" by comparison, with a harsh, toppy sound that lacked dimension or imaging. I'm sure the 875 would have a better pre-amp stage, but it did get me wondering...


5. For "critical" stereo music listening, I've kept my Creek OBH-22 passsive pre-amp which, mostly because it's passive - is UTTERLY transparent. Far, far and away the best, most accurate pre-amp I've ever heard. I promise it would hold its own against any pre-amp at any price for sheer neutrality and naturalness. (When I first auditioned it, it calmly beat a $5000 Bryston active.)


6. I've always believed that unless you need any additional processing or enhancement, a pre-amp should be simply letting the signal through unscathed and nothing more - be it music or movies.


7. The 2809 used as a pre-amp - stereo or otherwise - is 90% of the way there when A-B compared to the Creek. It has exactly the same sonic character, and lacks only that last inch of indefinable "it".... airiness, breathing space, depth, or whatever you want to call it. (I call it transparency.)


So paired up with power amps, speakers and a room that's up to scratch, it should make for as accurate a system as most could want (short of getting a passive like the Creek!)
 
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