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Master Geek


Topic # 13799 30-May-2007 07:28
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Hi everyone,

I am currently upgrading my HT, I have just got a new TV, speakers and a DVD player. I now need a good amp/receiver/switch thing (whatever you want to call it).

I am having issues with sales people finding one model they know and pushing that one, they never give me much choice so I was wondering if I could get some of you guys to give me a hand.

I am not sure if I should go 7.1 (I currently have 5.1) but I don't really mind either option.

I would like -

HDMI switching at least 2-1
sound delay (my new tv processes the signal and causes a slight delay with my current system)
Plenty of inputs (the more the better of course)
Good beefy cable connectors for speakers - my small sony amp that I am currently running has teeny holes to put speaker cable into.

Other than that, money is the major limiter I am hoping to pay under $1k.

I am based in wellington - so wellingtonians can suggest good places to go to buy the thing as well.

any help/advice would be much appreciated.



thanks.
brendan.

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  Reply # 72807 30-May-2007 10:45
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i wouldnt bother with 7.1 - there arent that many sources of 7.1 stuff to make it worthwhile and it will cost you for the extra two speakers..

as for places to recommend - www.easternhifi.co.nz and www.stereoworld.co.nz are two outfits you might like to speak to.  People in both shops (auckland based) seems to know what they were talking about and the guys at stereo world really do good deals too.  I'm sure both can courier you stuff or even have it drop-shipped by the manufacturer/distributor.

When I was looking there were only two units that existed with HDMI switching - both were over $3500.  Now there seem to be quite a few around.  Not so many have the sound delay controls - the Yamaha amps did if i remember correctly.

Regarding the Sound Delay - I have found that if you feed a preprocessed image into your screen then you don't tend to have as many problems with sound delay.  I.e. if you have a DVD player that can output to the screens native resolution then use the scaling there rather than the scaling in the TV.  Also, your tv might have AV outputs on it - try feeding the sound from the tv back into the amp instead - this often fixes the delays too (may compromise the sound quality though)




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  Reply # 72810 30-May-2007 11:13
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7.1 is not a big thing, isnt very widely used, extra speakers are a pain etc. Wouldnt bother (and my amp does it).

The extra channels are usefull for biamping or mutliroom audio tho.

Most decent amps should have sound delay controles, mebe not the base models but with HDMI switching it'll be relativly high end, nost now accept that a display can cause lag so need to adjust audio to suit.

I'd stick to the well known decent brands, not sure whats current for the HDMi side but Denon, pioneer, panasonic, Sony, Yamaha for the main brands.

Prehaps NAD, Onyko(sp?) Marantz are usualy OK too.


Frm  Regs link the Denon 2307 does what your after for $1600

 
 
 
 


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  Reply # 72812 30-May-2007 11:27
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I purchased an Onkyo from LV Martin. They are local to you, have a right of return policy and 60 day (I think) upwards upgrade.

I would make sure that you had

HDMI 1.1 at least (ideally 1.3 but apparently the chips are in short supply)
Upscaling over all inputs so you can just use one connection to the monitor
7.1 is okay but there is little content in 7.1 (I think some DVD's have Dolby Digital EX on them which is 7.1 and derives the additional rear channels from matrixed informatio in left and right rear). I have 7.1 but the two outputs are not connected since I have no easy way to place those additional speakers.

Larry




System One: Popcorn Hour A200,  PS3 SuperSlim, NPVR and Plex Server running on Gigabyte Brix (Windows 10 Pro), Sony BDP-S390 BD player, Pioneer AVR, Raspberry Pi running Kodi and Plex, Panasonic 60" 3D plasma, Google Chromecast

System Two: Popcorn Hour A200 ,  Oppo BDP-80 BluRay Player with hardware mode to be region free, Vivitek HD1080P 1080P DLP projector with 100" screen. Harman Kardon HK AVR 254 7.1 receiver, Samsung 4K player, Google Chromecast

 


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  Reply # 72816 30-May-2007 11:57
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Personally I would not bother with 7.1. In all the recent HT installs I have done (in new homes) I have provided for 7.1, but not one owner has bothered. From a install point of view wiring for 7.1 does at least offer more flexible 5.1 placement, ie you can place the 5.1 rears either on the back or side wall as the wiring is there. I normally recommend 5.1 setups with sidewall bipoles, but thats my personal preference and most customers have been very happy with the results.

As for AVR, my favourite is Yammy, but Denon I can also recommend. Onkyos seem ok, but feel cheap to me, however based on your budget the Onkyo would be a good option. Sony's in your price bracket are pretty nasty. Their more expensive units seem ok, but not the sub $1k.

As for delay, not many offer overal delay to compensate for display frame processing, Denons do, well dearer ones, not too sure about the <$1k. It is obviously more of a problem when the display is deinterlacing. However that said I normally prefer to deinterlace in the display.


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  Reply # 72917 30-May-2007 23:51
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of course check out the features, things that you can't live without, but for me (amateur sound engineer) the sound that comes out is what matters most. some tend to be more "squeaky sharp" and some are more mellow. i've been searching for a harman kardon avr-45, it's old, apparently it breaks down, but my wonder, does it make your avril lavigne sound good on 5.1! (my father in-law has one)

so i guess pick your brand and read the reviews. they're all good (the branded ones) but in vastly different ways. also very important to see with your own ears first. then get the flavour of the day that's within budget! in terms of shop, harvey norman is bargainable, but they have limited choices.




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  Reply # 72920 31-May-2007 00:08
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Mate had a samsung 42" screen to use for a while, and the lag on that thing even on VGA at native resolution was shocking - I was blaming the wireless mouse for me clicking past buttons all the time. Turns out it was the screen, and its nothing to do with the deinterlacing since it was just as bad on interlaced or progressive component too.

No idea how anyone would use a game console on it at all. Audio delay is essential if you have a screen like that, to my eyes with the mouse it was a good 3-4 frames behind what it should have being.








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  Reply # 72922 31-May-2007 00:10
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Oh, and watch for brain dead things they do on the cheap ones to make you buy a higher end one. Cheap denons direct mode still has the sub output live on a stereo input, Some other brand had problems where when in direct mode it would downmix AC3 and DTS to stereo and send that out to the mains and nothing to anything else, had to be in one of the dolby prologic modes for ac3 to go to all speakers, which meant frequent mode switching.

Also check that the speaker crossovers are adjustable, stereo sub output is always a bonus if your room setup allows for it.




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  Reply # 72925 31-May-2007 00:48
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joker97: ...i've been searching for a harman kardon avr-45, it's old, apparently it breaks down...

Yeah, I've got a Harman Kardon AVR-80 and it was a good amp while it lasted, but the auto-power on/off circuitry got more and more dodgy, then completely died in the end so you couldn't turn the amp off.  So I unplugged it from the wall socket and now I can't turn it on again Frown

Could probably be fixed I guess but is it worth it?

Meanwhile, the old Technics Amp that a mate brought back from Hong Kong in 1987 is still working perfectly...

I don't think I would buy any more Harman Kardon gear after this experience.

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