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#361458 - 12/20/11 02:33 PM Pre-Pro options?
michael_d Offline
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Registered: 07/23/04
Posts: 4195
Loc: Up yonder
I have not been keeping up on new AVR's or Pre's for a couple years. I've been quite happy with my 3808. Now I have a new projector on order and a new 3-D BR player. I hate 3-D, but have a funny feeling if I don't move up to the latest HDMI spec, I'll run into headaches.

Seams like there are few, if any options for finding an AVR or Pre that will allow width, height and surround back speakers at that same time. At least that was the case last time I looked. Anything new here?

I would really like dual LFE outputs that actually have independent calibration.

I have ten channels X 200 watts.

I use a Lumagen Radiance XS for video processing, so it doesn't matter what chip the pre would have, but complete unadulterated pass through is important.
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#361464 - 12/20/11 03:13 PM Re: Pre-Pro options? [Re: michael_d]
avjunkee Offline
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Registered: 07/28/10
Posts: 110
The Denon 4311 is one that comes to mind. One would need extra external amplification for two channels, but at least it allows for height and wide at the same time.
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#361494 - 12/20/11 11:10 PM Re: Pre-Pro options? [Re: avjunkee]
dakkon Offline
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Registered: 02/08/04
Posts: 1863
Marantz AV7005. Or maybe the new outlaw whenever it comes out..

Michael, what is your budget? Depending on what your budget it, my recommendations might change slightly.

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#361501 - 12/21/11 02:51 AM Re: Pre-Pro options? [Re: michael_d]
JohnK Offline
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Mike, the 4311 mentioned by AVJ is the one that meets your specifications(i.e., simultaneous 11 channel operation including back surrounds, front heights, front wides, and two sub outs with independent calibration)and is more or less your 3808 three generations later. Also note that it has the top Audyssey version, MultEQ XT32.
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#361524 - 12/21/11 10:30 AM Re: Pre-Pro options? [Re: JohnK]
jakewash Offline
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Registered: 12/26/03
Posts: 10415
Loc: Calgary, Alberta
I have seen and played with the 4311, it appears to be every bit as good as the venerable 3808.

I don't beleive the Marantz 7005 is equipped with Audyssey DSX.
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#361533 - 12/21/11 11:19 AM Re: Pre-Pro options? [Re: JohnK]
Nick B Offline
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Registered: 08/05/06
Posts: 504
It seems to me that a preamp with an external amp is not a very cost effective solution, but it doesn't really make much sense why that is the case. I think that major manufacturers just artificially keep the prices high, maybe so that they don't lose the audiophile customers or something. Maybe someone can explain to me how even budget receivers ($400 to $500) are loaded with many of the latest features: video scaling, Audyssey room correction, height and/or width channels, etc. Yet, there are not any preamp options in this price range or slightly higher (<$800). Simply leave out the amps and put in balanced outputs.

Just like Mike wants. It seems reasonable that Onkyo could put out a preamp with balanced 11 channel (front heights and front wides) outputs, 2 sub outputs, and even MultEQ XT32 for less than $1000. The Onkyo 3009, has a list price of $2200 and it has MultEQ XT32. The Onkyo 1009 has a list price of around around $1400 and it only has the MultEQ XT instead. So the MultEQ XT 32 is, at most, a $800 feature. Probably more like $500 to implement it. Stepping up from the Onkyo 509 to 609 gets you the Audyssey DSX, for a $150 price increase. So it seems to me that the Audyssey DSX is, at most, a $150 feature, but probably more like $100. When you look at the fact that Onkyo has entry level $300 to $400 multichannel receivers, loaded with plenty of features, how hard would it be to remove the amps, add the 11.2 balanced outputs in their place and the Audyssey DSX and MultEQ32 and come in under $1000. For a step up of $300 or $400 they could put out another line with those same features and top of the line video processing. They could also offer a step down model that only has MultEq XT instead of MultEq XT32 and no video processing for $500. But, then they would be competing with their sister company Integra who doesn't really offer a preamp for less than $1500.

This seems like an untapped market to me. With the way that the big brands are releasing new receivers every 6 months with more and more features than before. They could sell these more budget friendly preamps as well, and more people would be willing, every few years, to upgrade if they are excited about some of those latest features, like front height and width channels and the latest Audyssey. But, if that same person spends $2000 on an avr, they are probably going to not upgrade until the receiver dies (10 years or more).

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#361539 - 12/21/11 12:25 PM Re: Pre-Pro options? [Re: Nick B]
Ken.C Offline
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Registered: 05/03/03
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I'd say it's a classic case of supply and demand. The demand just isn't there, so the price goes through the roof.
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#361541 - 12/21/11 12:33 PM Re: Pre-Pro options? [Re: Ken.C]
CatBrat Offline
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Registered: 08/05/09
Posts: 6015
Loc: Milky Way Galaxy
Today, that'd be hard to judge, I think. Because I don't see any supply. If the supply was there, the demand might just follow. Especially with the plethora of multi-channels. A cheaper supply of mono-block amps would help also.

Just thinking... I remember, as a programmer, back in the day, there was a new compiler for the C language called Turbo-C. They were practically giving it away. They would slowly raise their price through the years to be more competitively priced. I don't know if this model would work for a new hardware vendor, or not. (end of passing thought).


Edited by CatBrat (12/21/11 12:39 PM)

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#361545 - 12/21/11 01:18 PM Re: Pre-Pro options? [Re: JohnK]
michael_d Offline
connoisseur

Registered: 07/23/04
Posts: 4195
Loc: Up yonder
Originally Posted By: JohnK
Mike, the 4311 mentioned by AVJ is the one that meets your specifications(i.e., simultaneous 11 channel operation including back surrounds, front heights, front wides, and two sub outs with independent calibration)and is more or less your 3808 three generations later. Also note that it has the top Audyssey version, MultEQ XT32.


Thanks John. I'll look at this a bit closer. I had thought the sub were tied together though and you basically just got a second port to plug the cable in to. Or maybe that was one of the earlier models??

Also, if a person has a relatively small room, like my room, and there just isn't 32 places to put a mic for EQ calibration, does the newer version of Audyssey have any value? Other than the additional locations for gathering data, what else puts it above previous versions?? Just asking as I don't have a clue........

In regards to my budget, I'd prefer to keep costs under $1500, but can move that upward as needed. I'm not about to get into MacIntosh territory though, as that would just be a waste.
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#361551 - 12/21/11 01:48 PM Re: Pre-Pro options? [Re: michael_d]
J. B. Offline
connoisseur

Registered: 01/19/11
Posts: 1291
Loc: Quebec, Canada
from what i have read on "ask Audyssey", it's always better to take 32 readings if your version will accept it, although there are restrictions as to where you may take the readings.
if you haven't done so, you should read this carefully, a required reading:
http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showthread.php?p=14456895#post14456895
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