Budget 7.1 Receiver - Home Theater Forum and Systems - HomeTheaterShack.com

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post #1 of 35 Old 12-01-07, 11:38 PM
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Budget 7.1 Receiver

Ok here we go...I'm looking for a budget 7.1 HT receiver and would like some feedback. Room is a small living room, speakers will most likely be stand mounted Monitors with at least one subwoofer.
Here are a few of my must have's

Assignable Surround back speakers to be able to Bi-amp my fronts if needed.

All the latest greatest DTS, Dolby digital formats. I could care less for 27 different hall, jazz, blah blah dsp modes.

I do not need HDMI or the latest HDTV switching..if I get a HDTV it won't be for a while.

Pre-amp outputs for all channel...I plan on using external amps for Front, Rear and Center channels at a later date.

Sound Quality is my first concern

I would love it to have some sort of Pure Direct for 2 Channel music only mode.

I am open to a Pre/Processor

I'm a fan of Pioneer Elite, Yamaha, Denon, Marantz.. but I'm just not up on the latest products..but I'm open to just about any.

Here is the kicker
My budget is under $500 Firm...would like to be in the 350 to 400$ range.
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post #2 of 35 Old 12-02-07, 01:12 AM
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Re: Budget 7.1 Receiver

The Onkyo TX-SR605 7.1 Channel Home Theater Receiver is $430 shipped.

It's loaded with features and the only one I know of at this price that can do all it does.

Front Bi-amp capable
DD Plus, TrueHD, DTS-HD Master Audio
Pure Direct

I believe you will end up needing the HDMI... it will decode your DD Plus, TrueHD and DTS-HD

HDMI I/O: 2 / 1
HDMI Version: V1.3
HDMI Bandwidth: 1080p
HDMI Deep Color Capable (36bit)

I don't think a Pre/Pro, Pioneer, Yamaha, Denon, nor Marantz will give you the features you want for less than $500.

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post #3 of 35 Old 12-02-07, 10:56 AM
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Re: Budget 7.1 Receiver

The 605 lacks preamp outputs.

Mike, if you really don't mind upgrading in the future to get HDMI, I'd look for a Yamaha 659. It was replaced by the 661 mid-2007. OneCall currently has it for $398 delivered, according to PriceGrabber. If you do a bit of legwork, you can probably do even better since the 661 can usually be found near $400 now. Of course, that would also be an argument for going ahead and getting the 661 since it fits your budget as well. Only thing I'm not sure of on the 659/661 is reassigning the back surrond channels for biamping the fronts...not sure how common that feature is on any brand.

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post #4 of 35 Old 12-02-07, 11:10 AM
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Re: Budget 7.1 Receiver

The Yamaha 659 and 661 are also available from the Shack Store for $399 and $499 respectively.

A quick glance at the Yamaha web site for both indicates they can reassign the back surround amps for biamp duty so both meet all of your "must haves".

SQ is subjective, but a buddy of mine replaced a Sherwood-Newcastle AVP-9080, Stereophile Recommended prepro during its day, with a 661 as prepro only and felt like it was a SQ upgrade across the board.

In the interest of for just a little more...around $600-650 the Onkyo 705 becomes a player. It adds THX Select certification, a 3rd HDMI input, and processing for the TrueHD/DTS-HD lossless codecs to the equation. "The Perfect Vision" recently reviewed it and while they had it, compared it to their Anthem separates rig and felt like it more than held it's own.

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post #5 of 35 Old 12-02-07, 05:16 PM
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Re: Budget 7.1 Receiver

What about the entry Emotive pre/pro?

I was even thinking about an older Pioneer Elite? Like I said...the video section does me no good and wont for a few years. I might be able to pick an older unit up at a discount.
post #6 of 35 Old 12-02-07, 05:23 PM
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Re: Budget 7.1 Receiver

hifibuyguy wrote: View Post
What about the entry Emotive pre/pro?
The Emotiva's are great for the price - especially when you consider you are getting separates so when you are ready up upgrade you just need to worry about the processor not the power. It is also worth noting their amps test extremely well and should add no coloration to the system.
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post #7 of 35 Old 12-02-07, 05:53 PM
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Re: Budget 7.1 Receiver

I'm having a look at the two Yamaha's, the 659 and the 661. I found a pretty good price on both that I may not be able to pass up.

I'm looking at the Yamaha web site doing a compare on the two..
the 659 has a little more power..not enough to matter
the 661 has DTS Neo 6, I'm not even sure what that is?
The 659 has a Pure Direct for two channel
and of course the 661 has HDMI

I've found a place that's about $100 difference between the two.
Decisions? I know it's not much of a difference to some to have the HDMI but seeing that it's so close to Xmass I need to save every $ I may have to go with the 659 and not look back.
post #8 of 35 Old 12-03-07, 09:18 AM
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Re: Budget 7.1 Receiver

I'm going to have to agree with Sonnie on this one, Go with the Onkyo. I have always had a Yamaha preference and for many years thats the only equipment I bought but after recently upgrading to the Onkyo I don't regret it for a second.

Home theater:
Onkyo 805, Yamaha YDP2006EQ, Samson Servo 600 amp
3 EV Sentry 500 monitors across the front, 4 Mission 762i's Surrounds, SVS PB13U sub, Panasonic BDT220, Harmony 1100, Nintendo WiiU
Panasonic PT-AE8000 on a 120" 2,35:1 fixed screen

Living room system:
Sherwood/Newcastle R972, Mission 765's, SVS SBS02's, A/D/S MS3u sub, Yamaha YDG2030EQ
Yamaha KX-393 Tape deck, CDC 805 CD changer, Panasonic BD60, Sony turntable PS-T20
Panasonic TC-P50ST60, HD-PVR & WDTV Live, Harmony 900

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post #9 of 35 Old 12-03-07, 10:17 AM
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Re: Budget 7.1 Receiver

You can get the Sherwood Newcastle R-772 for $530 which violates your "firm" requirement but gets you a of a receiver with HMDI 1.3.

Last edited by jackfish; 12-03-07 at 10:22 AM. Reason: missed something
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post #10 of 35 Old 12-03-07, 10:22 AM
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Re: Budget 7.1 Receiver

Onkyo TX-SR703 is under $500 on the shoponkyo.com site. No HDMI, but everything else you need. I would be tempted to hold out for a good deal on a 705 though, you know you'll want HDMI eventually. Better to buy one receiver now, than one now and one later.
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