I am looking into getting a new receiver and I would like 6.1 sound. But, I don't want to spend a fortune. I saw this Pioneer model had 6.1 output and had inputs for 7.1. And I can get it for the low $300's. Has anyone had any experience with this model??
I just installed one of these last week for a good friend who bought it to run a 5.0 NHT speaker set he purchased from me.
To compare I've run the same NHT's (2.5's, Super1s, 1.1s, VT2A) through a Yamaha receiver (rxv-990), a Denon AVR-4800, and a Denon AVR-4800 as pre-amp with Mark Levinson amplification. I know the speakers, but not the room I put it into. My most recent system is Denon 4800 to Levinson & Sim Audio amplification running all Magnepan around with 2 subs. A strong hurdle for the $300 receiver to jump.
The user interface was difficult. There is no on-screen display so it is a bear to set up. Nice binding posts, but recognize if you use 12 gague wire you'll curse & scream since they are so close together.
The available sound formats are nice and do a decent job with the material.
The amps are where I feel the 811S lacks. Yes it's 100wpc into 5 channels with all channels driven, but that's at 1kHz NOT at full bandwidth. This results in a very fatiguing sound after a while. Keep in mind that's comparing it to a $4000 2 channel amp. The sound is smooth, but extremely etched. Again keep in mind the NHT 2.5s are 6 ohms resistance so the amps drive even harder and are very sensitive to upstream components (I thought the Yamaha 990 was similar in sound). I found the high end was detailed to the point of wanting to turn it down slightly. The Midnight Mode helped immensely and opened up the sound stage. The speakers/room interaction generated a huge amount of bass so the loss via Midnite Mode was minimal. I assume getting the low end bass off the amps helped the soundstage open up.
There are Several bells & whistles on the box, to the point of being annoying in some ways. Just too much to choose from, all using the one line display on the 811S. Setup is somewhat un-intuitive, but if you're experienced setting this stuff up it makes sense quickly. I'd hate to have this be my first receiver with no one to help set it up. Finding the SPL level adjustments was tough and until I realized that the digital inputs were assignable I thought we'd have to put the DVD player through the TV input. Needless to say I found the adjustment. DPL2 was a good mode and I really enjoyed it for music, especially MTV2.
Worth $300? Definitely. Specs DO matter when using less efficient speakers and if you can add a decent 2 channel amp up front, I think the combo would be really nice during day to day use.
Got one two weeks ago from BB. Took it out the box, wired up all the speakers. Turned it on and got Amp Err flasing on the screen and the unit would shut down. Thought maybe a wire was touching, so I disconnected all the speakers and turned it back on and got the same results. Returned it to BB, but they were out, so I am looking again. Never had a DOA reciever before out of the dozen or so I purchased. So, I am looking again.
Another thing I noticed is that the heat sinks are paper thin. They have a PC type muffin fan mounted to help dissipate the heat. Never got to check out how loud it was becuase the amp would not boot! It probably owuld not matter since my HTPC fan is probably louder.
i've owned this rec. for about3 months so far so good,set up was a little involved(bad eyes), but as for set up goes ,the push of one button will get your dvd up and running right out of the box as stated in the manual. if this rec. is lacking anything it would be the amp section but i,haven't found that to be the case. the only thing about it that bothered me was the x-over, which is only selectable not adjustable. BUT hey for 300.00 and so easily up graded i thought it was a GREAT bargain!
The Pioneer rates up their with the Denon 2802 from some of the reviews that I have read on line.
Posted by: nick
"I had posted my obeservations on the Onk 600 and the Pioneer 811S and had posted a deteailed review on the boards about the 811S. I could tell the difference in power without paying a lab in NJ or anything like that.
The 811S is a tremendous receiver for that price and defintely can't be beat. It outperforms the Yammys, ONkyos and Denons at least in HT and can keep up with the Denon 2802 in HT performance. The 2802 will get the better of the 811S in music but at $299, do you really care?"
Also Norman L,a guy at hometheaterforum.com teststed the 811S.
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