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Upgrading Receiver - Help?

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Upgrading Receiver - Help?

Old 10-15-13, 01:28 PM
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Upgrading Receiver - Help?

I am in the market to purchase a new receiver for my modest home theatre set up. I am currently running a 12 year old Kenwood VR 506(?) that is still going strong but it's time for an upgrade. Since I have been out of the loop for so long I am not too savvy on the technical specs and how they compare from one receiver to the other.

My budget is $300-$400 (CDN) and right now I am looking at these models:
  • Sony 7.2 - STRDH740
  • Pioneer 5.1 - VSX-823K
  • Yamaha 5.1 - RXV475B
  • Marantz 5.1 - NR1403

I do not have a 7.2 system and probably won't have one due to size constraints of the room so I don't want to plunk extra money down for that feature. Not really sure what other types of features offered that I would need but I don't need the bells and whistles, just a great sound with plenty of inputs.

Right now I am running a 42" Panny Plasma, HD DVR, Xbox 360, and PS3. All are hooked up with HDMI save for the 360. Taking a quick look, it seems most receivers come standard with 4-5 HDMI ports. I will be looking to upgrade the TV and Speakers/Sub in the future but thought I would start with the receiver.

Any thoughts on the above models or recommendations on similar modes in that price range?
Old 10-16-13, 09:11 AM
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Re: Upgrading Receiver - Help?

Almost a year ago I decided to upgrade our 12 year old Denon to have the HDMI pass thru and simple connecting everything via one cable to the TV. We have AT&T Uverse, Blu-Ray, Xbxox 360. I've been a Denon fan as long as I can remember but based on what I was looking for in a unit along with price I went with he Yamaha AVR-671. At the time the CAT/internet connection was only available for upper mid to high end units and was a must for me. not only streaming music from the pc but getting firmware updates with ongoing changes in the video/audio.

The other thing with Yamaha is there abundance of sound fields is well known. The 671 doesn't disappoint in that area. I cannot speak for other models but the simple setup and user interface guide on the TV was very good and simple to get around. While simple to setup which included the "mic" for the system to do a auto tune, you have some serious fine tuning abilities at your finger tips.

The other important feature of course was good HDMI pass thru with 3D which I've had zero problems with. I also liked the layout of the connections on the back panel and the extra ones in the front with USB. The front panel is laid out good with four presets for your components...TV, Game, Blu-Ray, Music or whatever you want.

So far I've been impressed and no issues. Streaming music from the PC comes with a simple click and some of the music enhancements have made the MP3's sound as good as ever. I've also ran my MP3 player thru the XBox and it's handled that with no problems. no issues with U-Verse or the Panasonic Blu-ray even with 3D. I still admire Denon but I give the Yamaha high marks and feel they give a bit more bang-for-the-buck though.

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