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237 posts

Master Geek
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Topic # 115184 17-Mar-2013 12:53
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Hello fellow Geeks,

I am keen on purchasing an HT for my existing set up,  Panasonic Plasma 42" (no ARC), and Panasonic DVD recorder and a WD media player ( for playing movies mainly that I download)

My old HT is a Creative Inspire that only accepts optical and coax inputs and had years of usage before the head unit stopped to work. ( Creative speakers and an unpowered sub)

My plan is to feed all the HDMI inputs to the receiver and have the one output to the TV.

I have been offered a good price of NZ$ 1500 for the Yamaha YHT 473 pack from HN.
I am waiting for a time when they have a x months deferred and x months interest free sale.
I have read very good reviews on the Receiver RXV473 which has networking and also airplay - I only have an Ipod but am an android man.  so little use of the airplay I guess.

My lounge and kitchen dining is U shaped but the listening area of the U is about 3m x 5 m,  and I only listen at low volumes.

1    At first glance what do you think of the Receiver ?  
I know this is an open ended question, but I find that this system suits my budget.
The only concern is that if I were to get some decent floor standing speakers in the future  ( Diamond 10 or a B&W) will I be able to drive them with the Yamaha 473?  even at lower volumes?
I understand these high spec speakers are hard to drive and possible clipping may occur and the amp might struggle!

2  As my router is located elsewhere I plan to use a a homeplug AV500 to run the ethernet over the mains to hook up the receiver.  Can the homeplug be used for pulling audio and video without stuttering although the bandwidth is quoted as 500mbps , in theory this is not the practical speeds you will get?
Any advise or experience using these kits to run LAN over the mains?

3  I cannot afford to go higher in price due to budget limitations and do not want to get second hand on Trade Me.  The Yamaha system appeals to me as I would also like use the 2 way floor standers to listen music CDs.  However the quality of MP3 on my hard drive using the WD media player will be not as good as its quite lossy , but this is also a method that I will use to listen some of music that I download.  I know that there are  lossless formats for ripping if I have CDs .  
Something that I do not like is that the sub does not have a standby and remains on at all times,  but without any input I suppose the idle current is minimal .  Is this a biggie?  Also the sub does not have a filter to adjust the frequency range and is all controlled by the amp

The amp also can switch its HDMI inputs while in standby which is very handy as all inputs will connected to the amp.

I have tried to place as much info as I can and would like your feedback 

Many thanks


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  Reply # 783070 17-Mar-2013 19:14
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Good price with what should be Yamaha tuned speakers to go with a Yamaha receiver. Do you have the price on a till quote or business card? If so, then you'll be able to get your deferred / interest free deal... but if not... well, maybe not? How long do you really need to pay off a $1500 system? 3 years? That strikes me as a long time to pay off a technology based item as it won't be worth anywhere near as much by the time you've paid for it.
Will it cope with big B&W's or trickier to drive Wharfedale's at low level? Yes. Will it work well at higher volumes and get the best out of your speakers. No.
It's the second to bottom receiver in Yamaha's range... so you're pushing it if you're looking to do this.
Don't worry about the sub not turning off, it uses very little power to be fair, and there's always work around's such as surge protectors that can be turned off by remote control etc.
Remember, you don't need to plug your music into your WD media player necessarily, the RXV473 does take USB memory sticks, so you could load it up with higher bitrate files and play that way if you want. It supports FLAC 96/24, WAV, MP3, WMA and MPEG-4 AAC via USB / network connectivity... so you should be pretty happy.
I'd say you should be very happy with the unit, so give it a nudge.
Oh yeah, but only if you like the sound of course!

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  Reply # 783129 17-Mar-2013 21:53
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Can't comment on the Yamaha, but I can comment on the Homeplug aspect of the questions.

The kit you quote should work fine for what you want to do, but in practice it depends on the state of the house wiring etc. I have 500mbps Netgear kits (XAVB5004) connecting two WD media players back to a central storage unit, and they work well for streaming audio and video without dropouts. You won't get anything like 500mbps but, unless you have the Live Hub, the WD units only have 100mpbs ports anyway. My experience in a house with 1970s wiring is that I can get sustained transfer rates of around 85mbps (one way) which is more than adequate for audio/video unless you have some insanely high bitrate files. It's enough to transfer 700Mb (the size of many downloads) in well under 90 sec.

Personally, I don't download but I have compressed my DVD library down to files ranging from 0.8-1.2GB in size and stored them centrally, and I can stream those without any dropouts.

Only caveat is read the reviews before you buy. Not all homeplug kits with similar specs are created equal, and can give markedly different results. I picked the Netgear because tests I read said that it outperformed other brands on older wiring (which I have). Pick the model(s) you are interested in, and google some reviews. Smallnetbuilder.com is a good place to start.

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Ultimate Geek
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  Reply # 783314 18-Mar-2013 10:30
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Homeplugs - I can't comment directly on performance of Netgear AV500 units, but I do use Netcomm 200 Mbps rated units. They give me sustained data transfer rates of better than 80 Mbps and that is good enough to stream uncompressed Freeview HD TV recordings. Based on that experience, providing your home electrical wiring is in good condition, music and compressed video files shouldn't be a problem for AV500 units.



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Master Geek
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  Reply # 783330 18-Mar-2013 11:06
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Hi
Many thanks for the advice, and detailed write-up.
With your help, I am more confident in making the purchase.
I agree that paying it off in 3 years is a long time frame for a Tech product.

I was reading good reviews on the TPlink AV500, but I will look up the other ones you have mentioned.
I note that the age of the house wiring plays an important part.


No I did not receive a till quote;,  only a business card and verbal quote, so maybe I will wait for a promo.

Cant wait for the next HN promotion, and maybe buy some decent speaker wire elsewhere, as well, rather than use the ones supplied in the pack


One last question:
My TV does not have built in Freeview and I always record news, and other soaps etc. (Saves time skipping through the adverts)
I do not want to have the AMP on with surround sound to watch these programmes.  ( maybe for a music programme)

When the AMP is in standby, will the audio and video pass through to the TV?  ( as if the TV was connected via HDMI straight to the Panasonic DVD recorder ).

To achieve this, I was told by a retailer that I might need to connect the DVD recorder straight to the TV via HDMI and then use the optical out of the DVD recorder to feed the amp and listen to 5.1 when needed.
But this kind of defeats the purpose of using the HDMI inputs of the amp?

thanks again


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  Reply # 783371 18-Mar-2013 12:11
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They were incorrect, just plug your Panasonic recorder directly into the RXV473 via HDMI, then run an HDMI cable out of the RXV473 to the TV.
If you go into the receivers menu (under video) you can turn HDMI pass through functionality on... and you'll be able to watch your Panasonic recorder on the TV with the receiver in standby - the picture and sound will come out of the TV, but if you flick on the receiver, the sound will come out of your speakers.

In regards to changing speaker cable, make sure you don't go for the cheapest kit you can find! But don't go overboard either, as the quality of the cable inside the speaker would, in theory, be the limiting factor.
A lot of cheaper cables I've seen around have been copper coated aluminium... and of course, the packaging always states '99.9% oxygen free copper' or some such other waffle. Go for a brand name you know, and get it for cheap to avoid oxidization of the cable.



237 posts

Master Geek
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  Reply # 783653 18-Mar-2013 21:51
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Thanks again  Dunnersfella, Deev8 and JimmyH for your contribution

cheers




237 posts

Master Geek
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  Reply # 784928 21-Mar-2013 13:13
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Hi

Have you had issues using the AV500 on a power strip with surge protectors ( filters)
issues =  drops in speeds,  pairing, disconnections etc.

My TV, DVD recorder and TIVO are all plugged into a power strip with a surge protector and I plan to use this to plug in the AV500.  I have been advised that these units do not like such filters.


Guys do you think I should post this query in the correct forum, or am I allowed to go on a tangent slightly in this forum for Home Theatre?

Harvey N is offering a 60 month interest free period and I am so tempted to buy this Yamaha Pack, but havent decided on a  AV500 yet. 

The Netgear XAVB5004 looks good as I can plug in multiple devices, as I would like to connect the DVD recorder for DLNA, and also perhaps if I buy a WD live..  

thanks.

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  Reply # 785149 21-Mar-2013 18:57
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Mine all plug into powerstrips and (despite the book saying not to do this) work fine. However, my powerstrips aren't surge protected. The main ones are (with the TV, DVD-recorder media player etc) but the secondary ones aren't, for that very reason. Can't comment on how they would work through surge protected ones, but I would guess not well. I suspect you need to google for forums specific to such things.

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Uber Geek
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  Reply # 785274 21-Mar-2013 23:55
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60 months to pay off an amp and speakers? Surely not?
Or am I mad in thinking this is odd?
Anyway, Powerline type techs shouldn't be used on surge protection without dedicated Powerline plugs... the dropouts will drive you bananas.



237 posts

Master Geek
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  Reply # 785707 22-Mar-2013 21:48
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Hi

Took the plunge and finally bought the Yamaha YHT pack from Harvey Norman this evening.
Dont cringe Dunnersfella,  I got it  for $1650 on a 26 month interest free plan, 
But I would pay this before then as I has done for my previous purchases.

Printed off the manual (only soft copy provided on a CD) and shall look forward to try it out.

Maybe later as I am having the carpets cleaned tomorrow and the last thing I want is to keep the floor standers on a damp surface,

Would I miss much if I buy the AV200  than the AV500?
If I can pull audio and video at 85 Mbs I suppose this will suit me as its been advised that this has worked on the DLNA application.  Also the WD media player is limited to 100Mbs !

thanks for your help



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  Reply # 786048 23-Mar-2013 20:08
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As I understand it from my reading before I brought, you would lose:
- some speed/ throughput
- some robustness (the AV200 units are less tolerant of distances and less than pristine wiring)

DON'T compare the 200mbps and 500mbps directly to the speed of the ports on the equipment, you don't/won't get anything like the speeds quoted from the kit in practice:

1. Firstly, as I understand it, the quoted speeds are bi directional, so a 200mbps adapter is only 100mbps in one direction (ie throughput for streaming), and the 200mbps kit likely only has 100mbps ports as a consequence.

2. Secondly, the quoted numbers are maximum theoretical ones, and with real world wiring etc the actual throughput you get can be significantly less.

So take the quoted speed, halve it, and then take of a (meaningful) margin for real-world conditions. That's the network speed you will really have. Especially if you are buying the 4-port adapters and may want more things (consoles, multiple media players or whatever) connected to you network over time, the extra throughput of the AV500 kit could be an advantage. Personally, given the fairly small price differentials, unless you have an incredibly tight budget I would get the AV500. Shame to spend money on good kit and have it hobbled by saving $80 on the infrastructure that ties it all together.

DISCLAIMER: I'm not an IT pro or a networking expert. This is just what I have deduced from what I have read, and my opinions. If in doubt, google is your friend. Also, there are people on GZ who know a lot more about networking than I do and who could probably usefully chime in at this point.



237 posts

Master Geek
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  Reply # 786293 24-Mar-2013 14:28
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Hi JimmyH

You make a valid point.  I shall look for the AV500 as I might get the 4 port version and there is the advantage when I plug in more than one unit. I will need to order one online as the likes of Harvey N, DickSmith, Global PC only have the single kit ( 1 pair).  I always prefer to buy from a physical store.

You dont have to be an IT expert, but I value your input, as this is the very reason I use Geekzone.

Hooked up the Yamaha HT ( wires all over the place) ,  but initial experience very pleasing.
Watched a bit of Santana Supernatural and even at low volumes rattled my windows. 
BTW saw Santana live at CHCH hence this selection.  (apologies as this is useless info)

The remote is a bit cryptic but I am getting the hang of it. Now I need a new entertainment rack as the wooden one I have doesnt take the Yamaha- its too high.

Its an annoying thing when the screen refreshes each time I make a selection ( on the TV),  but I knew about this before. But again you only use this when setting up.


Thanks


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  Reply # 786499 25-Mar-2013 08:36
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Dunnersfella: 60 months to pay off an amp and speakers? Surely not?
Or am I mad in thinking this is odd?
Anyway, Powerline type techs shouldn't be used on surge protection without dedicated Powerline plugs... the dropouts will drive you bananas.

I don't see the problem in paying something off interest free over 60 months regardless of the type or size of purchase. What difference should that make? It's really about the NPV of the payments. The lower the better, regardless of what the value of the purchase is at the end of the payment period.

Or are you saying that it doesn't make sense from the lender's POV?



237 posts

Master Geek
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  Reply # 789777 30-Mar-2013 22:19
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Hi 

What wire size would fit the standard speaker binding posts.
I was told that it can take even a 10 AWG size.
I am settling for 14 AWG,  but I am guided by what you have to say.

Initially planning to wire the floor standers first.

I had a look at the Pudney speaker wires at BOND + BOND and were on a special 30% discount.
But its annoying that its quoted in metric.  I need to do the conversion. 
Might drop in on Sunday and ask for a further discount.

Almost bought a WD live for $99,  but thought that I shall leave this until I buy an AV500

I plan to insert the wires inside the hole of the binding post .
However the other option is to use a banana plug and I can solder them on 
Its just another cost and extra work etc ,  do you bother with using banana plugs

Very pleased with the Yamaha YHT 473. It take time to read and adjust all the little settings to my liking.
Wonder why they never provided a single standard RCA/phono cable, to connect the amp to the sub!
Yamaha call it an ' audio pin cable' that is available commercially. 


thanks



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  Reply # 789856 31-Mar-2013 10:23
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qwertee: Hi 

What wire size would fit the standard speaker binding posts.
I was told that it can take even a 10 AWG size.
I am settling for 14 AWG,  but I am guided by what you have to say.

Initially planning to wire the floor standers first.

I had a look at the Pudney speaker wires at BOND + BOND and were on a special 30% discount.
But its annoying that its quoted in metric.  I need to do the conversion. 
Might drop in on Sunday and ask for a further discount.





I wouldn't wait until Sunday as they are closed for Easter, Monday will be your last day as they will then close their doors for good.


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