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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I have an Integra 9.1 receiver with 130 watts into all channels. I am contemplating an upgrade in either amp or speakers. Anybody have any experience with a higher end AV receiver and upgrading to a separate multi channel amp like Rotel, ATI, Outlaw,etc.. (not high end amp) an using the receiver as the pre-amp. Anybody notice an improvement ? I am mainly looking for in improvement in two channel audio but also a pick up all around for HT. I have Paradigm Studio 100 V1 speakers by the way. Not sure which of the two is the weaker link (speakers versus amp section of AV)?
 

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I would second the idea that speakers in this case would be the way to go. When you are ready to upgrade later I would recommend seperates for preamp and amp, as it is easier to upgrade a pre/pro and hang on to an amp, which is much less likely to become outdated.


Dave
 

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I 'third' the speakers first.


Also using a receiver as a pre/pro is not a bad way to step into separates.
 

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At the risk of being insultingly obvious, I will offer a different opinion ...


Before you start exploring the option of replacing either the receiver or speakers, play with some items that are free or inexpensive, such as:


* Speaker location/positioning/stands - even modest changes may make significant improvements in the quality of sound. Before moving the speakers/sub, move yourself around the room. Would a different seating position help? Toe in or straighten the speakers, pull them out from the wall a bit, rotate the sub 180 degrees, etc. Put your speakers on makeshift stands - the level of the tweeter relative to your ears is extremely important for some speakers.


* Chair. This is a big deal for HT as some chairs have backs that effectively block side/rear speakers. The back should be well under ear level. No, this isn't necessarily free or inexpensive, but you may find that swapping furniture from elsewhere in your home takes care of it.


* Room enhancement - tame room reflectivity problems. There are some very reasonable DIY designs out there. To get a sense for what may help, try hanging a blanket behind the speakers, behind your listening position, at the reflection points, and on the floor. Not that this is a good long term solution or even a great test, but it may help you determine if it's an area worth exploring. You may find that simply placing curtains over windows, placing a bookcase (with books) in the room, or adding an area rug helps a lot.


* Wires/cables. No, I'm not a "spend $1000 per cable" kind of guy at all (heck, I don't even spend $100 per cable - I use mid-range AR interconnects and Soundking speaker wire), but look at all of your wires/cables to see if there are any blatantly weak points, like 22 gauge speaker wires. Moving from crappy 22 gauge wires to crappy 12 gauge wire would make a noticeable improvement (especially in bass) for next to nothing.


* Power. Again, not a "spend $5K on a filter/regulator" kind of guy, but you may be getting some low level interference that could be easily removed with inexpensive (under $300) filtering. I have a *very* low level hum that I only notice when doing night-time listening to music with lots of silent passages (classical, jazz) that I am trying to figure out. If I can't eliminate it at the source, I will start exploring more elaborate power filtering than what my current inexpensive surge protectors offer.


Hope this helps. If you are insulted, get over it. :D



Cheers,

Bill
 

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Quote:
Originally posted by Billped
If you are insulted, get over it. :D
I am so insulted....

I don't think I will ever be able to get over it...

what will I do?...


:D :D :D






Seriously, those are very good suggestions.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Billped, thank you for all the grea suggestions (and everyone else). Truth is I just want a new toy but at the same time upgrade the sound. I have done most of recommendations you made and my room has some layout limitation so that I have tweaked as much as my room allows. But now I just want something new and shinny in my room. I am leaning towards new speakers but just wanted to throw the amp idea out there to see if anyone has done something similar with good results.
 
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