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Receiver Help- Semi Newb...

624 Views 9 Replies 6 Participants Last post by  Johnny Bax
Hi all-

My first post here, but I've been lurking in the shadows for a few months now.

I'm looking at purchasing my first real HT system, and would really like to hear what some of you have to say about my choices so far. I'm currently running an old Onkyo HTIB, thats kind of getting boring... needless to say. It was good for the college days, but I'm ready to start moving up the ladder so to speak. I would have to say realistically it will be about 70% Movies/TV use, and 30% music only. Small/avg size LR- 12'W by 14'D but open on one side to kitchen- so width is really about 25'.

My gut is telling me to get something with reasonable quality so I won't become disgusted with it in a few months so, based on what I've seen around the boards out there here's what I'm looking at:


My local BB (I know, I don't really like the place either) has a nice Pioneer 1012TX on clearance for about 699. Looks like a nice setup, but I can't for the life of me find much info at all about it. Of course the guy there didn't know it from a run of the mill Sony. Seems similar to the 1014, but I don't even know what original retail was. And/or if I can get support/parts/warranty on it in the future.

Another local store has a Yam RXV-2400 on closeout. This one seems quite popular with a lot of HT buffs. $ wise- about 675.

I don't need the latest and greatest- I realize these units are probably last years stuff, I just want a solid receiver to build off of for a couple years, $$ permitting.

Speakers will probably be an Ascend or Aperion set. Probably only 5.1 for now.

Is that a decent deal on either of those two? For your $ and 70%HT and 30% music, which one would you lean towards?

Thanks for any suggestions you may want to offer!

Nate in PHX
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There has been quite a bit of discussion regarding the 1012 and 1014 recently. You should especially read this thread .

The 1012 was on sale at BB website for $599 for a while, but not any longer.

If you are only considering a 5.1 or a 6.1 setup, Panasonic SA-XR50 ($299) is another very good option that can save you $$$.
hd shark- thanks for the link to that thread. Didn't come up in my search for some reason...

Are there any advantages to ease of setup with the two I have listed?

I do hope to progress to 7.1 eventually. And I'm trying to "future-proof" at least one aspect of my system a little. I don't even pretend to know what all the connections are for- up convert this and DPLII that. I have no idea, and probably wouldn't even use some of the features on it right away.

What does anyone think about the pricetag on these things? What is MSRP? Could I find the same thing online for cheaper? Seems like a Pio 1014 may save me a few hundred bucks, and still do most of what I need it to do...

More opinions welcome!


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You do know that Aperion is giving away AVR's with purchase of a Speaker system. Right?

^^Kinda, looks like they're giving you $299 off, which you could of course put towards a new receiver, or cables, a tv etc etc etc
True enough now that I read it that way.

Or you could have them ship you an Onkyo TX-SR502 FREE!

LOL.... He did say he was just starting out.

If you really want to do it up right the first time, how about trying a refurbished Marantz at accessories4less.com, which is an authorized Marantz online dealer. For $350-450, you could get either an SR4400 or SR5400. I think either of those units would set you up for a long time, without breaking the bank.

Here's the URL: http://www.accessories4less.com

Select "Home Audio", then "Surround Receivers".
In my never-ending quest for some decent cables/ interconnects, I stumbled on to their website last night. They have by far the most reasonable prices on some pretty nice stuff. I did look through the receivers also, but wanted some opinions on the reliability of a refurb Marantz.

It's basically down to the Yam 2400- Ultimate will knock off another 10%, so I could pick that up for about 675, and now the Marantz. I haven't been around any Marantz products, but they seem to be held in pretty high regard around here.

I know this may be a nit-pick, but does Yamaha over-rate their power outputs? The higher-end H/Ks and now the Marantz seem to have lower output for the same dollar level unit. I realize that 10 or 20 watts may not make a nit's bit of difference in what I hear, but when you start talking 80 vs 120 watts per channel, it gets to a point where I start wondering what the deal is?

More opinions please- Yam 2400 vs Marantz 54,57, 6400, 7200 etc.

Thanks guys!

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I'd take Marantz over Yamaha.

First, certain brands tend to be very conservative with power ratings: h/k, Marantz, NAD and Rotel, for example. In generally, these brands tend to produce AVRs with more substantial power reserves. An h/k AVR rated at 45W x 5 will stack up quite nicely against, for example, a Sony AVR rated at 100W x 5. The ratings given by h/k are all-channel driven ratings (a better approximation of real-world conditions) than the single-channel ratings given by brands like Sony.

Second, depending upon the sensitivity of your speakers, the difference between 80 and 120 WPC may be inconsequential.

Third, going back to your initial post, I'd choose the Yamaha over the Pioneer. But I'd choose any of the brands mentioned above in my post over either Yamaha or Pioneer.
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The best reason I can give you to not hesitate upgrading to a Marantz, is my own experience. My Yamaha RV1105 performed admirably for me for six years, but I started to get the notion that perhaps I could get better musicality out of a new receiver.

In the last two months, I went out and researched receivers from most of the big name AV compnaies. I did side by side comparisons when I could. In the end, I ended up choosing the Marantz SR7400. The other competitors were:

Yamaha 2400

Pioneer Elite 54TX

HK 630

NAD 753

Denon 3805

To my ears, the Marantz sounded the most musical to me, and it had all the features I need/desire right now. And when I took it home and hooked it up, it was a huge improvement over the Yamaha sound.

Personally, if my local Audiophile shop was not a Marantz dealer, I would've purchased it from accessories4less without hesitation. Everything I've read on here from people who have bought refurbished Marantz's from them has been positive.

Best thing to do is go shop with your ears, and try to listen to a Marantz and a Yamaha side by side, if possible. Yamaha is a good company and makes fine equipment. Like I said, I was happy with my Yamaha for six years. But when I heard the difference in sound quality between the Marantz and Yamaha, I was blown away.
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