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Kenwood VR-6060, Pioneer VSX-D811S, Sony STR-DE985 ???

 

Since it's been a good 20 years since I upgraded my stereo system (with the heart of it being a Nikko NA-890 Amp), and my speakers have about had it, I've come to the conclusion that it's time for a new system. I listen to a LOT of music (mostly CDs; though also through my DISH); but I'm also into DVDs and had envisioned this as being the start of a better Home Theater System (some day I'll own that widescreen HDTV). Originally, I was looking at Home Theater In A Box Systems at Best Buy (mainly Kenwood, Sony & Yamaha) and planning on spending $300-500; but I've come to the conclusion that I'd probably be better off in the long run getting a receiver that more closely matches my needs and desires and then picking up a surround speaker set to go with it. I'd still like to do this while keeping the cost in the $500-600 range, if possible.

After doing a LOT of online reading over the last couple of days, I've pretty much narrowed the receiver choices down to those made by Kenwood, Pioneer and Sony, with the VR-6060 (though the VR-6070 looks very enticing), the VSX-D811S and the STR-DE985 being the prime candidates for consideration. Any input on these three, especially for those who have first hand experience with them, would be very much appreciated.

Regarding the speakers, I saw that Best Buy had three surround sound sets available for short money; the Sony SA-VE335, and the Yamaha NS-P220 and NS-AP480SW. Does anyone out there have any experience with these speakers? I've read where the Sonys' with the plastic cases aren't even worth considering..... I know that it would be great to be able to spend just as much on the speakers as I am on the receiver; but I really can't swing spending that kind of money right now (though Best Buy's no interest financing through January of 2004 makes it very tempting).

Any input is very much appreciated, and thanks in advance.
 

Gee, I'm kind of disappointed that I didn't get any response to this posting; but I guess everyone was to busy talking about the Kenwood VR-6070 to give this much thought. :)

Well, after a lot of thought on my part, as well as some more research and input from some other message boards, I decided to go with the VR-6070 myself!

Now I've just got to decide on a decent set of surround speakers, of which at the moment I'm seriously looking at BIC, JBL & Onkyo sets; though I'm open to suggestions on others in the $200-400 range.
 

Hi Mike,

Don't worry if you don't get any response.....

....I was consideting Pioneer 811S before I bought my Denon AVR-1803. Pioneer model was for $399 and I paid $499 for Denon 1803.

Denon is a high performance receiver than Pioneer 811s. If you are not particular about 6.1 surround sound but if you want to go with Pioneer, then try Pioneer's entry level model in ELITE Series. Elite series models are high performance receivers which is few level better than 811S.

The THD Rating was my main concern and DENON had a better performance in that THD Rating. But, if you want to stick to that budget, then consider the following models.

JVC 8020
Panasonic 200K
Onkyo TXR-600

I had been doing over 2 months research on this in this budget level until last week.
Consider Onkyo TXR 600 as everybody is talking about. See my other note in this same group message board.

Yamaha has got nice set of speaker package for $300 at Bestbuy ( it was on sale for $200 on Thanksgiving day).

Send me a mail to assk_satheesh@hotmail.com if you need to discuss more.
 

Thanks for the input..... Slowly but surely I'm getting my decisions made. :) Tonight I finally decided to settle on the JBL SCS-150 Speaker System to compliment the VR-6070. I figure this setup is going to get my foot in the door for a decent HT system. In the end, I spent a lot more than I had originally planned; but I think it'll be well worth it. Especially if it lasts as long as my current system has! :)
 

i have a pioneer prologic that is about 5 years old and just replaced it with a kenwood vr-6060 6.1x100watt unit. the volume is no where near as loud as the pioneer, is this common for a 5.1 or 6.1 reciever. do you notice it on yours? at this point i am ready to put the "pro logic" back in place of the "digital" thanks
 

Alford Holland
Bill, I had the Kenwood 6070 and it had more than enough volume. My speakers have an efficiency rating of better than 90. I now have a 200 watt seperates system. When I watch cable in DP2 or other surround mode there is sometimes a volume drop even with this setup.
What speakers do you have? Do you loose volume when watching DVD's in DD or DTS or only with analog sources? There are a couple of things to consider: most newer equipment does not sound as loud because it has less distortion. Using a SPL meter you may find that you are getting as much volume, and some newer receivers just require the volume knob to be turned more due to the gain settings.
 

I HAVE THE BOSE ACCOUSTAMASS 5 FOR FRONT AND BOSE CENTER AND REAR SPEAKERS. THE VOLUME ON THE UNIT IS "ADEQUATE" JUST NOT AS LOUD AS THE OLDER RECIEVER. THE "LOSS" OF SOUND IS ACROOS THE BOARD, DVD VDR TV AND TUNER. IT'S NOT THAT IT ISN'T LOUD, JUST NOT AS LOUD.
 

I've just purchased a Pioneer VSX-D811S for $304 (talked down from $349) as a replacement for my older VSX-675. All I can say is OUTSTANDING. With the variety of digital inputs, Video switching, excellent effects - I don't know how it can be beaten for value/price. Of course this one supports 7.1 (as well as 6.0) so now I have to scrounge up a couple more speakers for the full effects.

Oh yes, it sounds excellent - crisp and clear from a mouse whisper to rattle the windows blasting (good thing I don't have neighbors!) Now, if I can hook myself up with some preamps ;-)
 

Anonymous
Mike ,
go for the Pioneer VSX-ax10..it is the best!
 

"I've just purchased a Pioneer VSX-D811S for $304 (talked down from $349) as a replacement for my older VSX-675. All I can say is OUTSTANDING."

I bought the Pioneer VSX-D811s a few months ago myself for about $285. It has some great features such as 7.1 inputs, pre-outs for all channels, DTS ES Discrete and DD EX, PL2, Neo:6, Learning remote (you can even add missing button commands individually from other remotes), each of the 6 channel speakers can be programmed individually and separately for each surround mode (some receivers have one setting for all modes or set speakers in pairs), lets you assign a desired input to a specific device (rather than preconfigured settings such as video1, video2 as some receivers), multiple crossover settings, a well designed remote control setup & uses AA batteries that you probably won't need to replace as often, a constant volume readout, and excellent musical and surround quality. Although it won't matter to most people, it has a tape MONITOR loop which allows line level use of an equalizer with 2 channel stereo. So many other receivers that cost twice as much fail in more than one of these areas. Negatives? The component video is just fast enough to support HDTV, which means some quality could be lost compared to units with 50mhz component. Solution is to just connect HDTV sources directly to the TV and let the TV do the switching if needed. It also doesn't have a phono input. I often am disappointed or annoyed with the design of some features of operations of things I buy because there are so many things that could fail to meet your preferences, but this product was actually better than I expected. The sound is very clean, highly recommended!

I was thinking about adding a VR6070 as a second receiver so that I could use one as a preamp and the other as my secondary-pre-amp/main-amp with my 3 equalizers in between so I can EQ all 6 full-range channels. But I might wait for Kenwood's new model which I heard will include 50mhz video switching and a better digital processor.
 

I just bought the Pioneer VSX-D811S. I need a recommendation for speakers. You guys (Jeff & Rex & others) have a recommendation for me? What are you using and what should I expect to pay? Thanks in advance for suggestions. Thus far I've considered the Bose Acoustimas system or Acoustic Research HC series. (Price target is $400-$800) I've got nothing but a couple of old speakers (Pioneer HPM 40's) and currently am not planning on using them, should I instead be considering these as complements?
 

John Tackes
After some research I have decided to use my Pioneer HPM-40's as my main left and right front speakers if I can find a good complementary mag shielded center speaker. After talking to some "experts", I've decided my room is too big for the AR HC-6 & Bose systems I was thinking about as it measures 20 feet x 26 ft and has a 17 foot vaulted ceiling. Any suggestions on complementary center speaker for my HPM-40's as Pioneer couldn't?
 

I bought the Kenwood VR-6060. Although I like a lot of features, I was disapointed to find that the tone controls, loudness setting, and base boost are only usable in stereo mode. There are "Active EQ" and "Speaker EQ" settings which can be selected while using the surround modes, but I do not like the effects of the "Speaker EQ" setttings and there is little to no explaination of these settings in the manual.
 

Anonymous
DO NOT USE THE PIONEER HPM-40'S! I HAD THEM THEY ARE JUNK WITH THE 811S!I use Pro-Linear 5.6x2t's they are also only 400$cdn. and they were comparded with 1300$$ energys(and to me thats a good sign for speakers) look at:
www.pro-linear.com for details u will not find a better deal. I own the vsx-d811s and i had the hpm's as fronts i had problems like there was not enough power too the front and it sounded really dull once i bought my prolinears there was a drastic difference BUY THEM
 

CHAD
HELP: I JUST GOT THE VR-6060 AND I HAVE A PROBLEM:
I HAVE HOOKED UP MY NEW PROGRESSIVE SCAN DVD PLAYER TO IT WITH A OPTICAL CABLE TO THE "CD/DVD" OPTICAL INPUT. THE VR-6060 SAYS IT IS HOOKED UP TO THE OPTICAL, BECAUSE THAT LIGHT COMES ON....BUT NO MATTER WHAT I DO I CAN NOT GET ANY OF MAY DVDS TO PLAY IN DTS, OR DOLBY DIGITAL, I CAN'T EVEN GET THOSE OPTIONS WHEN I USE THE INPUT MODE.
 

Bill Hankins, the third one
I have an 86 Mustang SVO for sale in the northern california area $3700 obo, 707-585-6104 Willing to travel
 

sdfsd
chad set you dvd player off stereo and enable dd and dts.
 

I owned VSX-811S with Bose Acous. 15 system and with Bose 161 for my Rear Centers. I am very satisfied with my current system except that I need more Bass. I was thinking about adding a JBL 12" Powered Sub additional to my Bose.

But the question is: Can I use a seperate Sub to work on my system? The Bose connections goes from the Receiver to the Bose Sub and then to the Speakers. How can I hook up another Sub? I was thinking about the RCA "Sub Out" connection in back of my Receiver. But I do not know if this will work. Does anybody have any ideas???


Any help would be appreciated.
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