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Discussion Starter #1
Oh boy, here we go again... Now that the BDP is taken care of, and my new speakers are on their way, in my usual fashion; I am getting well ahead of myself and beginning my research into the wonderful world of separates! I'm looking at driving 5 channels in my present set-up.

I like my AVR (Denon X2000) - the options are great - I can set just about anything just the way I want it. Problem is; doing some checking on power ratings with special attention to "2 channels driven" vs. "all channels driven", I am coming up with about 38 wpc when driving 5 channels. It gives me 95 wpc when driving 2 channels, and I can (or at least I think I can) hear a difference when listening to music - the 2-ch configuration sounds a bit better, I think. Hmmmm... more power sounds better...

To pump up the power it appears I'd either need to pony up for one of those big top-end AVR's (around $2000 from my research) or go with a Pre/Pro and an Amp (likely somewhere in the same price range). The more I look, the more I like the separates route, but I have basic needs.

I'd like decent room correction - I like to be able to configure my volume display in dB (yes, I know; picky) - I must have adjustability of speaker crossover points, distances (with decent resolution) and trim - must have bass management - minimum of 4 HDMI inputs - 3D pass through - would like pre-amp inputs for at least 5.1 but this is not a show-stopper - don't need legacy inputs - don't want video processing (Oppo's got that covered). That's a good start.

I've looked at the Outlaw 975 Pre/Pro with a 5000 or 7500 Amp; this'd set me back $1000 and $2000 respectively. I've also looked at the Emotiva UMC-200 Pre/Pro with their XPA-5 Amp - around $1700.

Let's put a hypothetical limit on this thing and say I'd like to keep it under $2000 for the pre/pro and an amp. I'd like to be somewhere around 200 wpc (ACD) but I have to believe 150 wpc would do just fine. Probably don't need XLR pre-to-amp as it'll be pretty short runs so that's not critical.

What other options are there within that price range that would give me a minimum of 150 wpc with 5 channels driven, and the adjustability I'm looking for? Tall order, no?
 

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why not just get external amplification and stick with a receiver that has pre outs? The issue with the outlaw is the room correction is not so great.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
It seems the Outlaw 975 does not have any "automatic" room correction, unless I missed something in the literature. I could probably use REW and my SPL meter, and manual adjustments and get it pretty close so if I had to sacrifice built-in room correction, that wouldn't be a huge deal to me. my room is pretty wacky and I've managed to get it very close manually to what Audyssey was able to come up with.

I'd also looked at a couple of the Anthem AVRs - MRX-510 and -710 - nice, but this would take a good portion of that $2000 hypothetical budget.

I suppose I'm just not convinced the Emotiva UMC-200 or Outlaw 975 would be the absolute best bet. I've pretty much dialed it in to either the Outlaw 5000 or 7500, or the Emotiva XPA-5 for my amp - seems like these offer pretty good bang for the buck, especially the XPA-5. But again, the Pre/Pros by these two companies are still not convincing to me yet.

If you'd read my post on upgrading my front three speakers - you'd see how I am prone to bouncing around and changing my budget the more I learn - I may be looking for something that just doesn't exist in my price range. But of course, you folks know a lot more than I do, and may just be able to point me down some roads I had not yet considered. Which is why I hang around this place! :D
 

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Ill be right up front with you in that in all my years of audio ive never been convinced that a dedicated boutique pre pro gives you a better sound than a decent receiver that has pre outs for in many cases a fraction of the cost.
The issue mainly is lack of any decent built in room correction and lack of some useful features like THX or other processing modes.
The UMC 200 has so many issues that I dont know if I would get one. The XMC 1 looks great but at $2000 its up there
 

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Discussion Starter #5
I suppose you're right. I just feel weird looking at an AVR when I know I'm not going to use the amps inside the thing. I've seen where plenty of folks are getting a good AVR with the features they want, and using the pre-outs as you'd suggested. I'd really have no problem with that - at all - as long as I can get said AVR and not completely destroy my budget (at least my current hypothetical one...)

Ok, so AVR's - Marantz, Denon, Anthem, Pioneer Elite, Yamaha... AAAAAAAAUGH!!! (I love this hobby!)
 

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Well, the Denon X4000 has gotten some great reviews and the bonus is you then really just need a 3 channel amp for the front speakers and use the Denon for the surrounds. If you want Dolby Atmos the x4100 would be another option
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Oooooo, isn't that last year's (2013, actually) model? If these are still on the shelf somewhere I should be able to pick one up for a fair price, leaving me plenty of change to pick up the XPA-3 - even cheaper than the -5! The gears are turnin'...
 

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I just went through this purchase path. My first purchase was a Krell Showcase 7 channel amp and then I later picked the AVR to act as a preamp... the Denon X4000, which I got mainly due to it's apple airplay for my wife to use as a zone 3 out for the outdoor speakers by the pool and it's ability to use the audessy correction. So far this combo has proven to be stellar on sound.

I know the Krell is 12 years old now but it's one stellar of a performer. My total investment was $2400 for the denon and krell.

Sound and vision did a test on the Krell back in Nov 02' and found that driving 6 channels into a 8ohm load the krell was pushing 136 watts before it hit 1% and was pushing 105 watts at .1%.

May want to look into that as an option. For $600 the X4000 is a great unit from accessories4less.com
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Not gonna do Atmos in this (main livingroom) set-up. Basic 5.1 is good enough. Just looking to have a little more fun with this system before starting in on the basement HT where I plan to go completely bonkers. ($$$$$:yikes:)

I've got the Chane A5 towers and an A2 center on the way and I'd like to upgrade the power going to these new speakers. Know of any 3-channel amps that'd let me have around 150 or 200 wpc for not too much dough?
 

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Not gonna do Atmos in this (main livingroom) set-up. Basic 5.1 is good enough. Just looking to have a little more fun with this system before starting in on the basement HT where I plan to go completely bonkers. ($$$$$:yikes:)

I've got the Chane A5 towers and an A2 center on the way and I'd like to upgrade the power going to these new speakers. Know of any 3-channel amps that'd let me have around 150 or 200 wpc for not too much dough?
Not sure why your fixed on the watts but if thats your selling point then look at the Outlaw Audio Model 7500. There are 25w tube amps that would blow those A5's up.
 

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Tube amps are not ideal for home theater use. Not that I don't like tube amps but just not a good option for that use.
 

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Tube amps are not ideal for home theater use. Not that I don't like tube amps but just not a good option for that use.
I was just commenting. He seems to be set on watts.... Krell/classe/mcintosh/etc watts are not equal to AVR watts thats the main key to going seperates. All watts are not created equally.
 

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Krell/classe/mcintosh/etc watts are not equal to AVR watts thats the main key to going seperates. All watts are not created equally.
Where are you getting that?
A watt is a watt. There are receivers that can reach there full rated output but it's not common.
Almost any decent amp will do just fine. There are many many other manufacturers of amps that are reliable and far less exspencive than Krell Mcintosh or Classe.
 

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Where are you getting that?
A watt is a watt. There are receivers that can reach there full rated output but it's not common.
Almost any decent amp will do just fine. There are many many other manufacturers of amps that are reliable and far less exspencive than Krell Mcintosh or Classe.
As an electrician I know this... a watt is a watt lol. but for whatever reason it's not the same. 2 channel vs 2 channel my krell walks all over the denon and on 5 channel leaves it in the dust. just whatever electronics, circuitry, components, caps etc that all combine to achieve the same watt can all be different. I'm sure the difference would be greater pushing the A5s compared to my little bitty NHT.

Just saying that there is more to "sound" that is audible than just a watt.

My only experience in my own room thus far is the X4000 vs. the Krell. It's a night and day difference... even on 2 channel.
 

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Discussion Starter #16
I priced the Krell and Classe, and a few other higher-end amps, and they all are well out of reach for this particular application - I'd like to keep this amp under $1000, seeing as I might be spending $600 or $700 on that X4000.

The Emotiva XPA-3 comes in at $799 - it just happens to have 200 wpc. I'd likely not need all that power, but the price is right, and I'd have a ton of headroom, no?
 

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yes, that Emotiva will be just fine. Ive got 300watts driving each channel on my EVs and have never hit more than half the Samson amps full output running at about 90db.
 

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Discussion Starter #18
I've seen a bunch of comparisons dating back a ways between Outlaw and Emotiva (not much recently, don't know why, maybe it's been beaten to death already...) but if I backed off a bit on my power needs (read: wants) from 200 wpc to a more conservative 120 wpc, I could get an Outlaw 5000 ([email protected] ohms ACD) for a mere $599. Add that to the Denon X4000 on Accessories4Less ($649 currently) and I'm out the door for $1248 plus taxes and shipping!!

This would give me all 5 channels off the same amp, and I could still add rear surrounds or front heights and drive them from the X4000, if I so desired.

Decent, and certainly "good" amplifiers are essentially "forever" if you take good care of them, no? Well, within reason, of course. So my thinking is that, for a few watts less and a bunch of $$ less, I would have a full 5-ch amp that at any point could be re-purposed and run from a pre/pro if I wanted. Sounds like a decent long-term investment in my HT equipment. (I'm really only trying to convince myself here - once I'm whooped, I'll just need to convince my wife...)
 

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It is un necessary to power the surround channels with an external amp with that Denon you will be fine using the internal amps to drive them.
 

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It is un necessary to power the surround channels with an external amp with that Denon you will be fine using the internal amps to drive them.
I need to try this on just the rears and see if I can hear the difference. Right now my Krell drives everything and although I only have 5 speakers now I do plan on moving to atmos later and I have room with having my krell being 7 channels.

I'll try this out soon and report any findings.
 
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