Receiver or seperates?



I am looking to upgrade my AV Receiver and am deciding whether to go for sperates or not.

My current setup consists of Paradigm Studio 60 fronts, CC570 centre and a Servo 15 sub. I haven't yet got the rears as I am looking at renovating next year and was going to get them when my home theatre room is built.

I am running them off of a Marantz SR4300 with a NAD 208THX power amp. I have read on this forum that NAD and Paradigm is a good mix.

What I am after is whether I should get a receiver to power the rest of the speakers or carry on down the pre/power route.

John A.

Jeez you have a pony towing a Porsche with that receiver/power amp combo.

A dream upgrade is very simple and logical, provided you are seriously rich. It would be NAD S 170 Surround Sound Preamplifier, which gives seven channels, with an NAD S 250 Five Channel Power Amplifier. You could either keep the 208THX (2 x 225 w) for the two mains and use the S 205 for surround (what surround, 5 x 125 W!). Or stick with five-channel surround sound and use the 208THX for stereo in another room. You could get two full-range speakers for the mains, and move the Studio 60s to the rear. Paradigm Studio 100s would do nicely.

Having said that, NAD integrated receivers sound as good as other maker's separates, and you would probably not tell the difference between the dream ticket and a T 763 or T 773 AV receiver, unless you are listening in a concert hall. And the smaller Studio series speakers must make brilliant surrounds.

Subtract for the baseline of NAD approval (see other threads) and you could probably do just as well with other makes. Well, some.

Wish I had problems like that. You can hardly go wrong starting from there.

Paul T
I'm with John, he knows his stuff. Just wanted to throw another Surround Sound Pre-amp out to you in case you can't find the NAD being the Outlaw 950 it's been getting great reviews, it's also a 7 channel processor and has all the bells and whistles plus is one solid pre-amp..

John A.
Agreed, Paul. Thanks for the comment.

If Kodaz has Paradigms, he is probably in N. America somewhere, and will be able to try Outlaw; clearly serious kit according to what people write here.

What a system.


Thanks for the suggestions. I have been considering the NAD receiver but it's features are pretty sparse. This leaves me with the option of using a power amp for the other channel and lookign at a better preamp.

I am considering using the T973 poweramp and using the spare two channel for multiroom (I like the sound of my 208).

I used to work for an NAD retailer (after I got my 208) and I am sorry to say that I don't like the S170. It is a bit of a dog on the ease of use front.

Also as I live in New Zealand getting hold of the Outlaw pre is nigh on impossible (would be great though). As an aside too the 230v 208 is 250w per channel.

I am looking at the Rotel 1066 and the B&K Ref 50. I would like to get a THX certified pre as I watch a lot of movies and would use the THX EX Post Processing which isn't available on non-THX pre's.

I am also toying with getting a Pioneer Elite D2011 (45TX) or the newer AX5i (55TXi) just for the MCACC and iLink (only on the newer). I think both of these technologies would be very handy.

As for speakers I am intending to get either Studio 20's or ADP470's as surrounds and backs (still deciding on which combination would be better 470&470, 470&20, 20&20 ???).

And as for the anti-NAD sentiment at the moment. I have had my PA for 4 years and have had no problems but my earlier CD player lost it's LCD backlight.

John A.

Enviable position, enviable location. The 2 x 225 W for the 208 I got from NADs spec sheet in pdf format from the UK site. No wonder you like and want to keep that power amp. Apologies for locating you to N. America.


Look into the new NAD T 163 pre/pro which was just released by NAD. I am told it caused quite a stir at the CEDIA show in September. My local NAD dealer is quite excited about it. I am told it is much easier to use and it is equal to or better than the Outlaw (uses the Crystal brand DSP rather than the Cirrus Logic used by the Outlaw). It is priced much lower than the S170, too. I know none of the NAD dealers I have shopped even carry the "Silver Series."

Hi Hawk,

Thanks for the advice on the T163 I will be sure to check it out.

From my experiences with selling the Silver Line I have found it to not live up to NAD's reputation compared to their Classic products. Maybe the law of diminishing returns has finally come into play with their products.

Does anyone out there have good/bad experiences with pre/pro's or using a receiver as a pre/pro????

Rick B.
Hi Kodaz,
I just stumbled onto this site and i know this thread is old. I had to laugh because I have been using a Marantz sr880 as a pre-pro for several years now. I have an A/V setup with an Acurus 200x3 for the fronts and center. I use the receivers 90w for the rears. I use Def/Tech BP10 for the front with a Def/Tec center. I use def/Tech BP8 for the rear channels. I think the system sounds great. I am going to upgrade to 6.1 soon and am thing of going the receiver route again for a pre-pro. It's a question of who has the best DSP. any ideas????

P.S. I have a Def/Tech PF1500 sub

Rick B.
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