Help Needed - VSX-56TXI sounds bad


New member
Username: Tandemrider

Post Number: 1
Registered: Oct-04
I have a new Pioneer VSX-56TXI, with Paradigm Monitor 11 v2 mains, with Paradigm center, surrounds + sub.

For 3 years, these speakers were driven by a Sony STR-DE515. The system sounded great, but I was thinking it would sound better with a new high-tech amp. At this moment, I have my doubts.

My test source is the Eagles "Hell Freezes Over" DVD, which I have listened to dozens of times over the years.

To the casual listener, the VSX may sound OK. But I know what that DVD sounded like with the Sony, and the result from the VSX is definitely not the same.

It's like listening with a head cold and your sinuses are congested. While there is some content in the surrounds, the soundstage is flat and airless. The vocals are muddy. The bass drum comes through, but the notes from Timothy Schmidt's bass guitar sound like muffled thuds. All of the harmonics from the various musical instruments seem to be lost.

Both the DTS and PCM soundtracks give the same result.

I put the VSX thru the auto setup several times. I tried bi-amping the mains.
I tried various changes via the pro and expert setup menus.

I've tried the various music and movie sound fields. I can hear the difference between the fields, but none of them sound GOOD.

Being an electrical engineer, I'm sure the system is set up correctly per the VXS manual. All of the interconnects are proper - good cables and no reversed leads.

With Pioneer's heritage, and with all the capabilities of the VSX, it seemed like "improved sound" would be assured with buying the VSX. I'm not yet convinced.

I would greatly appreciate advice from those who have experience with the VSX line.

New member
Username: Tandemrider

Post Number: 2
Registered: Oct-04
Over the past 2 weeks, I have varied every parameter in the setup menus to determine the impact to the overall sound. I've also used every auto setup function. I've played with every control setting.

In the end, I've concluded that the vsx-56txi just has a radically different sound than the Sony amp that I've listened to over the years.

How something sounds is a matter of taste - everyone has their preferences.

No offense to the txi, but I'm glad I still have my Sony.
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