Any audiophiles out there?
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Old 12-02-2012, 01:38 AM   #1
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Default Any audiophiles out there?

My old faithful Kenwood 5.1 surround receiver bit the dust tonight while watching a movie with the family. I'm looking to replace it with a used 7.1 but am on a limited budget. Maybe $2-300...maybe a tad more if necessary. I've been out of touch with technologies for a while.

Here is my setup. My front speakers are my beloved KEF floor towers, a Velodyne subwoofer and JBL rears. I'm not interested in adding the 6 and 7 speakers right now, but will in the near future.

I ran across an NAD on ebay that has my interest and since I have owned an NAD power amp for many years, I know they are quality products. I also ran across this Yamaha (that once listed for $1800) on Craigslist.

Anyone have an opinion? Right now, I'm leaning toward the NAD for two reasons. One, the name. Two, it's tested from a dealer. But what features should I look for? HDMI is nice to have, but is it really necessary? The quality is no better than s-video or component. It only adds digital audio in the same cable making it convenient.

Let me know, hopefully soon. I can't deal with watching movies through my TV speakers!

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Old 12-02-2012, 01:57 AM   #2
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Originally Posted by 12fretter View Post
My old faithful Kenwood 5.1 surround receiver bit the dust tonight while watching a movie with the family. I'm looking to replace it with a used 7.1 but am on a limited budget. Maybe $2-300...maybe a tad more if necessary. I've been out of touch with technologies for a while.

Here is my setup. My front speakers are my beloved KEF floor towers, a Velodyne subwoofer and JBL rears. I'm not interested in adding the 6 and 7 speakers right now, but will in the near future.

I ran across an NAD on ebay that has my interest and since I have owned an NAD power amp for many years, I know they are quality products. I also ran across this Yamaha (that once listed for $1800) on Craigslist.

Anyone have an opinion? Right now, I'm leaning toward the NAD for two reasons. One, the name. Two, it's tested from a dealer. But what features should I look for? HDMI is nice to have, but is it really necessary? The quality is no better than s-video or component. It only adds digital audio in the same cable making it convenient.

Let me know, hopefully soon. I can't deal with watching movies through my TV speakers!
I would not call myself an audiophile because I'm just to cheap.

That said, I just bought a soundbar for my TV and it's a 2.1 and the sub is wireless, it cost $180 and it's nice. It's not surround sound or amazing in any way but it's 100 times better than the built in TV speakers.

My other comment is about HDMI, I think you should get it. I'm assuming that you have more than one source that you get sound from. This means that you need to run all different types of cables into your receiver or run them through a single device and if that device is a TV it's likely that the output no your TV will downgrade any signal to 2 channel, it's uncommon for TV's to pass through the same signal it receives. For that reason I recommend using HDMI and have the receiver as the hub for all your sound needs. Also it's important to check if the receiver you choose has the ability to adjust the timing of the signal to align it with your TV picture, sometimes with digital conversions the timing is slightly off. Even my inexpensive soundbar has that feature which I don't need for my DirecTv box but I do need for my HTPC.

One last thing, I have been very happy with items I have gotten from Monoprice. They are cheap and not brand name but if your looking to save money they are usually better than anything else in the price range but I'm not trying to convince you they sound better than an expensive setup just better than anything else in the price range.
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Old 12-02-2012, 02:14 AM   #3
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that is so 2 years ago

Best Buy is doing some incredible price matching to online pricing. I just picked up an AWESOME SC-65 for 1,100 out the door. Well worth the upgrade in cost.

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Old 12-02-2012, 02:34 AM   #4
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I still have my 1978 McIntosh receiver and 1973 Klipsch speakers..

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Old 12-02-2012, 02:54 AM   #5
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HDMI is absolutely necessary. We order all our movies through a laptop fed to the reciever on to the TV via HDMI. It's the way to go IMO. I've got a Yamaha upstairs and a Pioneer downstairs...both good units.

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Old 12-02-2012, 03:43 AM   #6
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YOU can get many great HDMI ready Home Theater REciever for not much money.

Take a look at this Onkyo for only $250 Granted it is not 7.1 but 5.1 but it has 4 HDMI ports. Plus it is 3D ready (If you want to watch a dim movie in a dark room with sunglasses on). http://www.crutchfield.com/p_580TXS313/Onkyo-TX-SR313.html?tp=179

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Old 12-02-2012, 05:12 AM   #7
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I use a NAD T773 A/V amp as a pre amp by unbridging the internal amp and use (4) Parasound HCA 1500 amps to bi-amp my front and rear speakers. However, this A/V amp run a set of 8 ohm BG hybrid cone/ribbon speakers very nice. The voice channel is still driven off the intergral amplifier section in the NAD T773. NAD has replaced the T773 with a newer model two years ago. I use Wisdom Audio ribbon front and rear speakers with 12" bass drivers and 42" ribbons. The mid channel speakers I can add later when I build a bigger theater room. For now and the size the room, the A/V amp in the 5.1 configuration is more than fine. It is a 7.1 A/V amp however. My sub woofer has twin 12" drivers with a 1200 watt internal amp which is the same as the bass drivers used in the Wisdom ribbon speakers.

I use HDMI and fiber TOSS link on the OPPO BDP80 BluRay DVD/CD player and component on the NAD M55 DVD/CD player. The NAD M55 is more for sound and the component cableing gives a much warmer, not so digital, sound.

Also, I run a Thorn semi-auto turntable for the 2000 or so pristine vinyl records I have. Nothing digital beats the sound of vinyl and I still buy new vinyl. The truntable is also using componet cableing.

That being said the NAD equipment rocks!!! I don't like Yamaha equipment as it deosn't come close to NAD performance.

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Old 12-02-2012, 10:10 AM   #8
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A $300 7.1 is a challenge in itself especially since you used the word "Audiophile", hard to get a single AP speaker for that much less a SS receiver. NAD has made some pretty good stuff but Ive seen them go up in smoke more than once and they are a bit light on power compared to some of the less Highend names. The Yamaha is pound for pound more powerful, likely class A and will keep the THD to a minimum while giving you plenty of punch. Actually, the Onkyo is a great all around receiver and a reasonable price for what your doing, if you buy it new, you will be sure its gonna work as it should. Also, if you buy new, think about a receiver that has built in wireless Podcasting, handy if you have tons of stuff on an Ipod or Iphone.

Good luck with your hunting!

First question, whats the display (TV), does it have HDMI's already, if so, you dont necessarily need them on the receiver, input all your AV sources to the TV and either take the Toslink or line level Audio-out (Variable preferably) and feed it into your ss input (Easier to use than a system switched through the receiver for most anyways.

Second, mismatching speakers (OTHER THAN THE SUB) will make the surround less realistic and sound screwy. Its important to match drivers in Mains, Fronts and surrounds if you want accurate reproduction and the sound to be steered without weird transitions and other anomalies. Another thing to keep in mind is the impedance of the Speakers, most good speakers are 8 Ohms, most less expensive ones are 4 ohms or less. A four Ohm speaker is twice the load on an amp as an 8 ohm one and while most new systems can handle that, older ones may not handle anything less than 8 ohms without puking their guts out. The speaker data plate should tell you, if not, a VOM will give you a close measurement on Ohms.



My main SS system in the house is an Onkyo, they are beefy, affordable and built to integrate with most anything out there!

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Old 12-02-2012, 11:26 AM   #9
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Another thing to keep in mind is the impedance of the Speakers, most good speakers are 8 Ohms, most less expensive ones are 4 ohms or less. A four Ohm speaker is twice the load on an amp as an 8 ohm one and while most new systems can handle that, older ones may not handle anything less than 8 ohms without puking their guts out. The speaker data plate should tell you, if not, a VOM will give you a close measurement on Ohms.

Never quite understood this. My Monitor Audio RX6 (english made) which i regretfully have sold, ran nominal 6 ohms. I ran the Yamaha at 8 with them. Loudspeaker impedance is not a single number, not sure how they determine nominal impedance.

By the way 12fretter ...The TV's they put out now have two receivers. Analog and Digital. But the analog one they throw in typically cheap and sucks and dang near unwatchable. Keep this in mind when thinking HDMI. They analog viewing will be horrible on your brand new TV should you be getting one anytime soon... but the digital is first class.
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Old 12-02-2012, 11:40 AM   #10
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I still have my 1978 McIntosh receiver and 1973 Klipsch speakers..
Ain't nothing wrong with that!...probably sounds better than the new stuff.
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