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HELP! Can't make up my mind! Separates or receiver??

 

Bronze Member
Username: David_nguyen

Boston, MA USA

Post Number: 27
Registered: Apr-05
Well, I just took delivery of a Denon AVR 4806 receiver and Denon DV 3910 DVD player, but have yet to open the box. Just before they arrived, someone at a high end audio dealer nearly convinced me that separates are ALWAYS better for sound. Now he has me considering the Rotel RSP 1068, along with the 5 channel amp (130w), and Rotel DVD player. What are people's thoughts? Should I keep the Denon hardware, or for about the same money, go with the Rotel separates?
 

Gvenk
Unregistered guest
As a rule, you get a lot less in features when you go to separates for the same money but they tend to have higher fidelity especially in audio. I would always recommend separates if you were building an audio stack if you can afford it, but for H/T purposes, pure audio quality is no longer the primary over-riding concern. Switching, connectivity options, control over audio channels in tone and gain, etc., are all equally if not more important than sheer audio quality. In terms of switching a video path, for example, not having separates can actually be a better solution. For example, an integrated DVD player with a receiver can be a better video solution than a separate DVD player if the connectivity is not handled properly. Since a/v synchronization is critical (to prevent lip synch problems), too many components can actually create problems in this area.

From that perspective, many of the mid-high end manufacturers previously known for their audio equipment are severaly lacking in some necessary features especially in the front-end processing and switching and connectivity of video as well as the flexibility in multi-channel or milti-zone set ups. So you should compare these features between the two. If the features are satisfactory, then the separates from one that has better audio quality is of course a no-brainer.

Another point to consider is that the connectivity features are undergoing a lot of quick evolution these days, so I wouldn't splurge a lot of money on a receiver in the next 6-9 months until some of these things stabilize. A separate a/v pre-amp/processor will allow you to upgrade that portion separately from the amp which might save you money over the long run (assuming the separate wasn't ridiculously expensive to start with).

If you go the separates route, then there is no need to necesssarily stay with all Rotel components except perhaps for getting a good package deal. There are many good dvd players out there and many good amps. You may want to focus on the RSP 1068 and see if it is satisfactory and look at pairing it with amps and dvd players from other manufacturers to pick best of breed. If RSP 1068 connectivity issues are a problem to do this then buying that separate is not a good idea.
 

Gold Member
Username: Jan_b_vigne

Dallas, TX

Post Number: 4143
Registered: May-04


I would venture the answer is in your ears and in your wallet. Ask the shop to display the qualities they suggest exist in the Rotel to your satisfaction. This should be based primarily on the sound quality with your speakers, the flexibility of the components and the resaleability of the two units should you decide to upgrade at a later date. Choose which ever one makes the most sense to you.




 

Silver Member
Username: Edster922

Abubala, Ababala The Occupation

Post Number: 892
Registered: Mar-05
David,

Really depends on your application. And budget of course.

If you value music-listening SQ, then definitely go with the separates.

If you're mainly looking for a HT experience (and this really is only worth it if you like watching a lot of action flicks that actually give your surround system a decent workout) then a receiver should be cheaper and more feature packed.

I listen to a lot of music and usually watch movies for the story, characters and subtext rather than visual or sonic razzle-dazzle so I tend to favor SQ over electronic bells and whistles.
 

Bronze Member
Username: Brittho

Frisco, TX USA

Post Number: 19
Registered: May-05
Honestly though with Rotel it may be tough to really hear a difference between their HT receivers and seperates. For me at least. Both will be impressive both with power and with overall fidelity. If you need plenty of driving power try the Rotel RSX-1067 and then the seperates if this is available for you. If you can tell a difference then you have more golden ears than I do. I just wish I could afford this one.:-) The 1056 should also help to provide you with enough connectivity options to satisfy.
 

Bronze Member
Username: Stu_pitt

NYC, NY Pakistan

Post Number: 96
Registered: May-05
You should probably listen to what you have before you start hating it. You never know, it may surprise you.
 

Silver Member
Username: Chitown

Post Number: 134
Registered: Apr-05
David that Denon is an awesome receiver. If you are going to get charged restocking fee keep it and be happy that it is truely a wonderful (and expensive) unit.

Separates are great, but so much of the overall sound quality would depend on other factors such as your room, speakers, echoing, external noise, etc. that at this point I would say stick with your Denon
 

Silver Member
Username: Edster922

Abubala, Ababala The Occupation

Post Number: 923
Registered: Mar-05
David,

oh I forgot to mention, your Denon probably does have pre-outs so if you find that you're not satisfied with the 2-channel music performance, you can always hook up a simple 2-channel integrated amp or 2-channel amp plus pre-amp to it for that purpose. That's what I've done with my Marantz 5400, just added some cheap vintage NAD separates to it which took the music performance to a whole other level.
 

New member
Username: Tubetone

St. Louis , MO USA

Post Number: 1
Registered: Jun-05
Buy the Rotel RSX 1056 or 1067. They alone would be a better sound than the Denon. I have heard more Denon over the years than I could count. Denon make a good receiver, but in 2 channel and music they are very soft sounding and Sound like they have half the power they print. I would get the RSX 1067 for about the same $ because if you want to step up you have the same preamp section as the RSP1068 $1500 preamp. Slap a good amp under that piece and you would be in heaven. If there is something you don't like about the reciever Marantz would be my second choice. Keep in mind that I am rating my opinion only on Build quality and Sound performance and not on small features
 

Silver Member
Username: Edster922

Abubala, Ababala The Occupation

Post Number: 945
Registered: Mar-05
David,

If you are feeling adventurous you may want to look into the pure-digital receivers, they are relatively cheap ($200-400) and many users have found that they actually prefer these to their traditional analog equipment costing several times more! Read below...

http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showthread.php?t=419342&page=1&p
p=30

PS. I had to separate the two P's in the link because for some reason this stupid ecoustics detector wouldn't allow me to post anything with a double "p" in it. So remember to copy and paste together both lines into your browser window.
 

Bronze Member
Username: David_nguyen

Boston, MA USA

Post Number: 28
Registered: Apr-05
Thanks for all who replied. I think that I will keep it. It's had nothing but glowing reviews, and it's got a host of features that I'm looking forward to using (video up-conversion). Also, until I have a real need for ultimate sound, along with the space to go along with it, I guess I'll keep away from separates, for now.

Until I set it up, I'd love to hear if anyone else owns the Denon AVR4806, and their thoughts on it.
 

Silver Member
Username: Frank_abela

Berkshire UK

Post Number: 564
Registered: Sep-04
David

Am I right in saying you have a proper (Naim?) stereo system for music? If so, stick with the Denon - it's a cracker for movies and the 3910 is a storming machine for the money.

Regards,
Frank.
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