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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I just ordered Focal Chorus 717v towers (same as 716v) and the CC701 center. As surrounds I will either use some older JMLab (old Focal brandname) Tantal 507 bookshelves or another pair of relatively inexpensive speakers, e.g. perhaps Cambridge S30s or S70s. I will eventually also get a sub, currently leaning toward either Rythmik LV12R or the budget-busting FV15HP.


I need receiver recommendations to drive this setup. I'd prefer to keep things moderately priced, e.g. around $500 if possible, but I could be persuaded to upgrade if there are strong arguments for doing so. I can't really imagine going over $1K. I don't mind going refurbished through a relatively reputable place like Accessories4less. The Denon X1000 seems like a reasonable choice, I'm not entirely clear on how to contrast it with the X2000, X3000, or if I were really pushing the budget, X4000.


Setup will be used about 50-50 for movies and music. For movies, I don't really foresee going for 7.1, so 5.1 should be fine. I watch various content, from action movies to mellower stuff. I play Blurays and stream HD content, projecting with a Benq W1070 with which I'm quite happy, with a little quibble regarding black crush.


My music preferences skew classical and heavily baroque. These days I mostly feed lossless files from an ipod and don't use my NAD CD player much. In addition to 5.1 for movies, when I'd presumably only send low-frequency content to the sub and not the towers, I'd definitely like the option to be able to pass full-spectrum two-channel music to the towers. It might be nice to also have the option to pass 2.1 for organ music or other music on which the towers can use low-frequency reinforcement, I'm not certain whether receivers will let me save three profiles so I could have one 2.0, one 2.1, and one 5.1, that would be ideal.


Recommendations welcome! I recognize lots of folks will argue for pushing the budget up, but advocacy for lesser-priced options also welcome!
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·

Quote:
Originally Posted by jdsmoothie  /t/1525539/receiver-recommendation-to-drive-focals-for-home-theater-and-music#post_24562154


The Denon X2000 is a good place to start, choosing the X3000 if you need the additional features offered.

On what basis would you choose the X2000 over the X1000? And what about the X3000 or even X4000? Re features, here's how the various receivers break down for the things that matter to me, as best I can discern:


- Moving from X1000 to the higher models gets me slightly more powerful amps, I don't have a good sense of how much this matters, especially since my speakers are fairly sensitive. For that matter, I'm hoping the Denons pair well with Focals, I've really liked the sound of my old JMLab Tantals paired with an NAD integrated amp.


- Everything above the X1000 is 7.1, whereas the X1000 is 5.1. Might be a nice option in future, but I'm pretty sure I'll stick with 5.1.


- Everything above the X1000 is 4K capable for future-proofing. Might be a nice option in future, though a ways off.


- The X4000 has much better Audyssey XT32 and sub calibration tools. I have zero experience with calibration, I don't intend to buy an SPL meter or become too deeply engaged, but I recognize I will want to calibrate my setup.


So I'm still at a bit of a loss on choosing between the $300 X1000, $440 X2000, $550 X3000, and $889 (including shipping) X4000. Wisdom welcome!
 

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If I wanted a good receiver, and my budget was $1000, there is only one that I would even consider; the NAD T758.


It is a waste of money to buy those excellent Focal speakers and connect them to a receiver from Yamaha, Denon, Pioneer, or Sony.


Using that kind of receiver with those speakers is like buying a Porsche and then putting a set of cheap tires on it.


The poor sound quality will be especially noticeable with classical music. Don't buy the wrong kind of receiver!


NAD, Arcam, and Cambridge Audio are the only receivers on the market that will deliver low distortion/good sound quality to those speakers.


POWER is a non-issue. POWER specs are determined with a resistor for a load. They are meaningless. A SPEAKER SYSTEM makes the amplifier work much harder and results in much higher distortion.


Almost ANY receiver has enough POWER for those speakers...but at what distortion level...when driving the inductance, capacitance, and varying impedance of real speakers?


Distortion is the issue, and the NAD and Cambridge receivers have a lot less, because their amplifiers and power supplies are better designed for driving SPEAKERS.




Don't settle for less.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·

Quote:
Originally Posted by commsysman  /t/1525539/receiver-recommendation-to-drive-focals-for-home-theater-and-music#post_24563707


If I wanted a good receiver, and my budget was $1000, there is only one that I would even consider; the NAD T758.


It is a waste of money to buy those excellent Focal speakers and connect them to a receiver from Yamaha, Denon, Pioneer, or Sony.


Using that kind of receiver with those speakers is like buying a Porsche and then putting a set of cheap tires on it.


The poor sound quality will be especially noticeable with classical music. Don't buy the wrong kind of receiver!


NAD, Arcam, and Cambridge Audio are the only receivers on the market that will deliver low distortion/good sound quality to those speakers.


POWER is a non-issue. POWER specs are determined with a resistor for a load. They are meaningless. A SPEAKER SYSTEM makes the amplifier work much harder and results in much higher distortion.


Almost ANY receiver has enough POWER for those speakers...but at what distortion level...when driving the inductance, capacitance, and varying impedance of real speakers?


Distortion is the issue, and the NAD and Cambridge receivers have a lot less, because their amplifiers and power supplies are better designed for driving SPEAKERS.




Don't settle for less.

Appreciate your thoughts. I must admit my old JMLab Tantals sound great driven by my NAD C340 integrated amp. I don't have a good sense of how much of a trade-off a higher-end Denon receiver driving the Focal Chorus would be--your assessment is pretty harsh, but I don't have much experience to assess the issue myself. The NAD T758 sounds promising--one thing I can't figure out on the NAD website is what level of Audyssey capabilities it has. It's also definitely pricier than I'd like.
 
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