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What would you buy for +/- 1000$

 

Bronze Member
Username: Alaing

Post Number: 12
Registered: Oct-04
I'm confused !!! I was going for the H/K 335 with Velodyne Sub, Polk RTi10, RTi6 and CSi5 but now I've heard that Harman Kardon pieces are very hard to find in Canada and if anything breaks, it take a long long time to repair... I am going to see the dealer tomorrow and am not qualified in hi-fi systems. What do you think and what would you buy instead ???
 

Silver Member
Username: Elitefan1

Post Number: 773
Registered: Dec-03
I would look at the Marantz 5400 and the Elitevsx52. The 5400 is on sale at HiFi.com for $405 with online coupon and you can get the Elite for $539 from dynaco.com for $539. Both good dealers and great prices on two very good receivers.
 

Silver Member
Username: Petergalbraith

Rimouski, Quebec Canada

Post Number: 165
Registered: Feb-04
She is in Canada, which makes these places possibly difficult to order from. www.cambridgesoundworks.com is a www.borderfree.com affiliated site, making it easy to order from, and they have it for US$450. They also have the SR4400 for US$300 which seems like a great deal to me! Unfortunately, their Canadian checkout is out of order right now. :-(

 

Silver Member
Username: Elitefan1

Post Number: 774
Registered: Dec-03
The hifi.com site is Cambridge Soundworks.
 

Silver Member
Username: Petergalbraith

Rimouski, Quebec Canada

Post Number: 167
Registered: Feb-04
Sweet! Where's the online coupon? That's interesting. I could always cancel the back-order on the Denon avr-1905 I have at ecost.com...

I'll have to dig up the differences between the SR4400 and SR5400. Any important ones off the top of your head?
 

Silver Member
Username: Hawk

Highlands Ranch, CO USA

Post Number: 664
Registered: Dec-03
Peter:

The differences between the SR4400 and the SR5400 are huge. I haven't checked them lately, but I seem to recall that the 5400 has a 12 db greater signal to noise rating (which is a huge difference) and much lower distortion. The 5400 also has greater power and dynamic headroom, which will be noticeable as a cleaner sounding receiver. Finally, the 5400 also uses much better switches, which will not pop when you change the source.
 

Silver Member
Username: Landroval

Post Number: 880
Registered: Feb-04
The 5400 has variable x-over for the sub, OSD, component video switching, more s-video's, front av-input.
 

Silver Member
Username: Petergalbraith

Rimouski, Quebec Canada

Post Number: 171
Registered: Feb-04
Thanks guys.

I'll check up on these model this evening. I just have to keep in mind that this is for my mother's basement, to replace an aging Yamaha receiver with separate Dolby Surround (the original) processor. It's not for me and she doesn't have the same requirements.

Would either of these Marantz be better than the Denon avr-1905?

It's possible to get the older NAD T742 for pretty cheap now (about $400). Is that a way to go?
 

Silver Member
Username: Hawk

Highlands Ranch, CO USA

Post Number: 667
Registered: Dec-03
Peter:

I would suggest that the T742 is the perfect receiver for your mother's HT. Let me explain why I like it.

Almost two years ago, I was jazzed by the appearance of the Denon 3803, which I was told was state of the art. I bought it. Several months later, when looking for some new speakers, I came across a audio demonstration comparing a Denon 2802, an Onkyo 700, a Harman/Kardon AVR525, and an NAD T742. The NAD was the least expensive and the receiver with the lowest power rating. It was a double blind demonstration where we (there were several of us in the room) did not know which receiver was playing at a given time. Within a short time however, the panel was unanimous in finding one receiver was cleaner sounding, more powerful, and imaged much better than the other three. We were all shocked to learn it was the NAD. I later brought my 3803 in to compare it and just about freaked when the NAD outperformed it, at half the cost and less than half the published power rating. At the $399 price I have seen it at several dealers, I consider it a steal.

Now, anoother reason I like it is that it is not cluttered with 20 formats and 50 sound settings--I don't need to hear a car chase in "Stadium," for example. It doesn't have a lot of the little used formats--NAD kept it very simple with only 5.1 sound formats. I don't know how technically savvy your mother is, but my experience is that many people want things as simple as possible and don't want to spend a lot of time figuring out how the remote works. It doesn't do 6.1 or 7.1 formats, not even with an external amp, but it does the standard 5.1 formats very well, with a minimum of effort.

Finally, I have heard very few complaints about this unit--usually having to do with the lack of 6.1 or 7.1 capability, but the sound is quite good. About a year ago, we had a number of posts from people who bought the 742 and they were extremely happy with it. I have not seen many posts about the 742 since the 743 was introduced around the beginning of this year. But it is my impression that the 742 had very few if any problems--logical since there was less to go wrong. Finally, I can't speak for the Denon 1905 as I have not seen one yet, but my experience with Denons is that they have truly terrible remotes that are cluttered with a lot of buttons that are rarely, if ever, used. For techno-geeks such as myself, it isn't a problem, but my parents or my in-laws would rather not used a remote if they didn't understand it. Maybe to turn it on and off, and to adjust the volume. Even my buddy's Denon DRA-395, which is a modest stereo receiver, is very cluttered and confusing (he has had it a year and still finds it difficult to use). I find the NAD remotes to be much easier to learn and navigate.

Also, as I read another string, you mentioned you got Axiom speakers for your mother's HT. I would suggest either the Marantz 5400 or the NAD 742 would be a much better match for the Axioms, which are a bit on the bright side. Denon's have been a poor match with Axioms in the past, and I find it unlikely that the new Denons are going to sound significantly different than the past three generations.

Just my thoughts . . .
 

Silver Member
Username: Hawk

Highlands Ranch, CO USA

Post Number: 668
Registered: Dec-03
Peter:

I would suggest that the T742 is the perfect receiver for your mother's HT. Let me explain why I like it.

Almost two years ago, I was jazzed by the appearance of the Denon 3803, which I was told was state of the art. I bought it. Several months later, when looking for some new speakers, I came across a audio demonstration comparing a Denon 2802, an Onkyo 700, a Harman/Kardon AVR525, and an NAD T742. The NAD was the least expensive and the receiver with the lowest power rating. It was a double blind demonstration where we (there were several of us in the room) did not know which receiver was playing at a given time. Within a short time however, the panel was unanimous in finding one receiver was cleaner sounding, more powerful, and imaged much better than the other three. We were all shocked to learn it was the NAD. I later brought my 3803 in to compare it and just about freaked when the NAD outperformed it, at half the cost and less than half the published power rating. At the $399 price I have seen it at several dealers, I consider it a steal.

Now, anoother reason I like it is that it is not cluttered with 20 formats and 50 sound settings--I don't need to hear a car chase in "Stadium," for example. It doesn't have a lot of the little used formats--NAD kept it very simple with only 5.1 sound formats. I don't know how technically savvy your mother is, but my experience is that many people want things as simple as possible and don't want to spend a lot of time figuring out how the remote works. It doesn't do 6.1 or 7.1 formats, not even with an external amp, but it does the standard 5.1 formats very well, with a minimum of effort.

Finally, I have heard very few complaints about this unit--usually having to do with the lack of 6.1 or 7.1 capability, but the sound is quite good. About a year ago, we had a number of posts from people who bought the 742 and they were extremely happy with it. I have not seen many posts about the 742 since the 743 was introduced around the beginning of this year. But it is my impression that the 742 had very few if any problems--logical since there was less to go wrong. Finally, I can't speak for the Denon 1905 as I have not seen one yet, but my experience with Denons is that they have truly terrible remotes that are cluttered with a lot of buttons that are rarely, if ever, used. For techno-geeks such as myself, it isn't a problem, but neither my parents nor my in-laws are the type to use a remote like that--their use would extend to turning the receiver on and off, and maybe to adjust the volume. Even my buddy's Denon DRA-395, which is a modest stereo receiver, is very cluttered and confusing (he has had it a year and still finds it difficult to use). I find the NAD remotes to be much easier to learn and navigate--and they are backlit.

Also, as I read another string, you mentioned you got Axiom speakers for your mother's HT. I would suggest either the Marantz 5400 or the NAD 742 would be a much better match for the Axioms, which are a bit on the bright side. Denon's have been a poor match with Axioms in the past, and I find it unlikely that the new Denons are going to sound significantly different than the past three generations.

Just my thoughts . . .
 

Silver Member
Username: Petergalbraith

Rimouski, Quebec Canada

Post Number: 179
Registered: Feb-04
Thanks Hawk! I replied in my thread in "Receivers" since I don't want to hijack this thread away from Marie-France. :-)
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