Geekzone: technology news, blogs, forums
Guest
Welcome Guest.
You haven't logged in yet. If you don't have an account you can register now.


2624 posts

Uber Geek
+1 received by user: 606

Trusted

Topic # 198227 1-Jul-2016 08:06
Send private message

I'm in the market for a new AV receiver. I have a budget of $500-$800, so I guess I'm looking at entry level stuff. It's replacing a Pioneer VSX-517, and I've been pretty happy with that. So that gives you some idea of performance expectations.

 

It will be driving a 5.1 set of Wharfdale Crystals (which came with the receiver approximately 8 years ago), and these will not be getting replaced.

 

It will be used for TV/movie watching, gaming, and music playback (largely via vinyl). The most common music genre will be rock/metal.

 

 

 

Essential features are:

 

- 5.1 support

 

- Dolby Prologic II support (hoping this is standard now, but doesn't hurt to check)

 

- At least 4 HDMI inputs, with support for 3D output

 

- Integrates with a Harmony 650 Universal remote

 

- At least one analog stereo input

 

 

 

 

 

Nice to have features:

 

- Built-in phono pre-amp

 

- Bluetooth

 

- Network streaming

 

 

 

I've seen this Harmon Kardon at JB HiFi that seems to fit the bill, but I'm open to recommendations.

 

 


View this topic in a long page with up to 500 replies per page Create new topic
 1 | 2


2624 posts

Uber Geek
+1 received by user: 606

Trusted

  Reply # 1583844 1-Jul-2016 08:22
Send private message

Here's a list of ones I've found so far. Once again, input appreciated on these. 

 

Denon AVR-X520BT

 

Harman Kardon HKAVR151

 

Yamaha RX-V381

 

Pioneer VSX-430

 

 

 

 


630 posts

Ultimate Geek
+1 received by user: 219


  Reply # 1583847 1-Jul-2016 08:25
Send private message

I have had one of these for 3 months or so:

 

http://www.avalon.co.nz/onkyo/685-onkyo-tx-sr343.html

 

 

 

Replaced an Onkyo 606 which did fail with the known hdmi daughterboard/capacitor problem

 

Hopefully Onkyo have sorted this issue out with this generation!!

 

Bang for buck/features wise it is very hard to beat - and nicely future proofed (for now) HDMI 2.0, HDCP 2.2, 4k, Atmos etc.

 

Goes well - step up from my old one in terms of grunt.

 

Movies sound meaty - am enjoying Atmos where its available.

 

Music sounds good too - sorry cant recall if it has a phono input?

 

Streaming spotify works.

 

Worth a test drive imo.

 

 




2624 posts

Uber Geek
+1 received by user: 606

Trusted

  Reply # 1583850 1-Jul-2016 08:29
Send private message

driller2000:

 

 

 

Replaced an Onkyo 606 which did fail with the known hdmi daughterboard/capacitor problem

 

Hopefully Onkyo have sorted this issue out with this generation!!

 

 

Yeah, I'm a bit wary of Onkyo because of this issue. But in the price range I'm looking at, they are all going to be cheap, mass produced units. Perhaps I'm being unfair, and should let the warranty/CGA have my back here (my Pioneer was fixed out of warranty thanks to the CGA).

 

 

Music sounds good too - sorry cant recall if it has a phono input?

 

 

Thanks. Phono input isn't essential, as my turntable has a built-in pre-amp. As long as there is at least one analog stereo input, I'm good to go. :-)




2624 posts

Uber Geek
+1 received by user: 606

Trusted

  Reply # 1583852 1-Jul-2016 08:36
Send private message

driller2000:

 

I have had one of these for 3 months or so:

 

http://www.avalon.co.nz/onkyo/685-onkyo-tx-sr343.html

 

 

 

 

 

Wow! This really does look the biz! Thanks for the recommendation.




2624 posts

Uber Geek
+1 received by user: 606

Trusted

  Reply # 1583903 1-Jul-2016 09:53
Send private message

This close to going with the Onkyo TX-NR646 that @driller2000 recommended. The feature set is awesome! And I got budget approval from the Finance committee. 

 

Only thing nagging at me are the well reported HDMI board issues. But it will be well ventilated, as it sits on a shelving system with all sides open. So if heat is a contributing factor, this will be mitigated somewhat.

 

Geekzone, tell me I'm overthinking this :-) 


3013 posts

Uber Geek
+1 received by user: 739


  Reply # 1583909 1-Jul-2016 10:01
2 people support this post
Send private message

dclegg:

 

This close to going with the Onkyo TX-NR646 that @driller2000 recommended. The feature set is awesome! And I got budget approval from the Finance committee. 

 

Only thing nagging at me are the well reported HDMI board issues. But it will be well ventilated, as it sits on a shelving system with all sides open. So if heat is a contributing factor, this will be mitigated somewhat.

 

Geekzone, tell me I'm overthinking this :-) 

 

 

The reality is for those of us on a relatively tight budget (and I totally count myself amongst this group!) bang-for-buck is a critical component (no pun intended!) in such decision-making, so I completely understand why you're drawn to this.

 

I bought an Onkyo 515 a few years back and it's performed fine and offered totally great value given I paid under $550; while HDMI switching is somewhat slow (always making me concerned I'll end up with the same problem others have had!) and I'm sure other brands offer superior performance , if I'm in the same financial position come time to replace this one I'm sure I'll end up with another Onkyo!


6691 posts

Uber Geek
+1 received by user: 576

Trusted

  Reply # 1583915 1-Jul-2016 10:05
Send private message

I have an earlier Onkyo, which did fail with the hdmi board issue.  I replaced the caps on this for a grand total of $4 in parts and it's kept working for many years now.

 

The problem was having this hdmi board sitting horizontal right above a heat source on the board below.  Hopefully they've addressed this now.

 

Keep the receipt.

With the audio mic, setup is easy and effectively tailored to your speakers/room conditions.  I'd personally never buy a receiver without this feature anymore as I've found them flippen awesome in practise.  I tend to turn up the centre channel a bit now though, as with kids we keep the volume down more, but still want to hear the dialogue clearly.


444 posts

Ultimate Geek
+1 received by user: 239


  Reply # 1583920 1-Jul-2016 10:24
Send private message

I bought the absolute rock-bottom model in the Pioneer range about four years ago and have been thrilled with it. Light on features, but does everything I currently need it to and performance has been rock solid. I plan on replacing it with another Pioneer when the need arises.

 

I haven't owned an Onkyo myself but my in-laws' experience (and those of everybody on Geekzone) means I won't consider them until the latest generation has proven its reliability over a number of years. Their feature set for the price is unmatched, though.




2624 posts

Uber Geek
+1 received by user: 606

Trusted

  Reply # 1583935 1-Jul-2016 10:39
Send private message

Crap. Can't seem to shake the quality concerns. It sounds like Onkyos have a very spotty history with their rich feature sets, with HDMI issues very common.

 

Currently am leaning towards this Yamaha. Nowhere near as many features, but has all the features I need. And I'd much rather have less features well implemented. 


3411 posts

Uber Geek
+1 received by user: 591

Lifetime subscriber

  Reply # 1583945 1-Jul-2016 10:59
One person supports this post
Send private message

So, of the Onkyo receivers I have owned, only the 606 had ever caused any grief. And once the hdmi board was repaired (under warranty) it was trouble free too. I have had no problems (touch wood) with my 608, 828 or 737. All are well ventilated. I was caught out years ago buying an expensive Pioneer Receiver that was quickly superceded on both the video and audio formats. It's still an awesome Amp but no good as a HT Receiver. I have determined to never again (barring a lotto win!) buy such an expensive piece of kit. Onkyos are feature rich for the price, but something has to give and it may be build quality. I considered swapping out my 608 for a 646 or 747 (on runout at moment) to get more hdmi ports available. That's kind of the way I consider their use. Maybe not quite consumables, but certainly not something to become attached to.




Areas of Geek interest: Home Theatre, HTPC, Android Tablets & Phones, iProducts.



2624 posts

Uber Geek
+1 received by user: 606

Trusted

  Reply # 1583955 1-Jul-2016 11:14
Send private message

Dingbatt: So, of the Onkyo receivers I have owned, only the 606 had ever caused any grief. And once the hdmi board was repaired (under warranty) it was trouble free too. I have had no problems (touch wood) with my 608, 828 or 737. All are well ventilated. I was caught out years ago buying an expensive Pioneer Receiver that was quickly superceded on both the video and audio formats. It's still an awesome Amp but no good as a HT Receiver. I have determined to never again (barring a lotto win!) buy such an expensive piece of kit. Onkyos are feature rich for the price, but something has to give and it may be build quality. I considered swapping out my 608 for a 646 or 747 (on runout at moment) to get more hdmi ports available. That's kind of the way I consider their use. Maybe not quite consumables, but certainly not something to become attached to.

 

 

 

Not sure if that helps or hinders :-)

Seriously though, I appreciate your input. Really need to decide whether I want to roll the quality dice, I guess. A couple of months ago there were a few more EOL models with similar specs for a similar price (Pioneer, Sony). But they don't seem to be around anymore.

 

 


3384 posts

Uber Geek
+1 received by user: 463


  Reply # 1584013 1-Jul-2016 13:30
Send private message

Jaxson:

 

I have an earlier Onkyo, which did fail with the hdmi board issue.  I replaced the caps on this for a grand total of $4 in parts and it's kept working for many years now.

 

The problem was having this hdmi board sitting horizontal right above a heat source on the board below.  Hopefully they've addressed this now.

 

Keep the receipt.

With the audio mic, setup is easy and effectively tailored to your speakers/room conditions.  I'd personally never buy a receiver without this feature anymore as I've found them flippen awesome in practise.  I tend to turn up the centre channel a bit now though, as with kids we keep the volume down more, but still want to hear the dialogue clearly.

 

 

 

 

The 2015 generation of Onkyo's are using their own room correction software... sadly it doesn't hold a candle to the Audessy (sp?) system they used in the past. But I guess if they have to cut costs somewhere, this may as well be the first place to start.

 

 

 

For a record of Onkyo failures, check out the Sticky thread on AVSforum.com under AV receivers.

 

There's a lot of reading, but some of the industry techs can shed some light on what's really happening / may happen (if at all).

 

 

 

 




2624 posts

Uber Geek
+1 received by user: 606

Trusted

  Reply # 1584047 1-Jul-2016 13:41
Send private message

Dunnersfella:

 

For a record of Onkyo failures, check out the Sticky thread on AVSforum.com under AV receivers.

 

There's a lot of reading, but some of the industry techs can shed some light on what's really happening / may happen (if at all). 

 

 

Thanks. At over 2000 posts, there is a lot of reading there.  Moved on from the Yamaha now, and am now considering the Denon... or was it the Harman Kardon..... arrrgh! The joys of trying to get awesome bang when your buck is less so. :-)


6691 posts

Uber Geek
+1 received by user: 576

Trusted

  Reply # 1584051 1-Jul-2016 13:47
Send private message

dclegg:

 

The joys of trying to get awesome bang when your buck is less so. :-)

 

 

 

 

I hear ya wink

 

Dunnersfella:

 

 

 

The 2015 generation of Onkyo's are using their own room correction software... sadly it doesn't hold a candle to the Audessy (sp?) system they used in the past.

 

 

 

 

That's disappointing man.  That was a pretty excellent feature, and was quite comprehensive. 

If you're on a budget I'd highly recommend the mic calibration option, as it can do wonders trying to normalise your crappy non linear speakers.  With the likes of in walls I'd almost consider it a must, given the fairly extensive set of parameters it configured for you, just for you.




2624 posts

Uber Geek
+1 received by user: 606

Trusted

  Reply # 1584130 1-Jul-2016 15:16
Send private message

OK, I bit the bullet and ordered the Yamaha RX-V381. It seemed to feature often in "Best budget AV Receiver" lists, and does cover all my needs.

While the Onkyo did have a lot more features, in reality I'm not sure I would've used them (with the exception of the phono input). And there were just too many question marks for me about the quality of the Onkyo. So I let the $100 cheaper price decide it for me, so I could score a bit of credit with the Finance committee. :-) 


 1 | 2
View this topic in a long page with up to 500 replies per page Create new topic

Twitter »

Follow us to receive Twitter updates when new discussions are posted in our forums:



Follow us to receive Twitter updates when news items and blogs are posted in our frontpage:



Follow us to receive Twitter updates when tech item prices are listed in our price comparison site:



Geekzone Live »

Try automatic live updates from Geekzone directly in your browser, without refreshing the page, with Geekzone Live now.



Are you subscribed to our RSS feed? You can download the latest headlines and summaries from our stories directly to your computer or smartphone by using a feed reader.

Alternatively, you can receive a daily email with Geekzone updates.