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  1. #1
    AR Newbie Registered Member
    Join Date
    Jun 2004

    I'm not sure which amplifier is good~ any help would be greatly appreciated

    I have recently got a set of yamaha 6.1 speakers as a present, but they need an amplifier to work (except for the sub i was told). So i've been searching on the internet on some entry level Receivers since i dont have very much money.

    I was looking at

    1) Denon 1801
    2) Sony 495
    3) Yamaha 430
    4) Marantz 7300
    5) Pioneer 512
    6) Harman Kardon avr 130 (Harman kardon direct on Ebay about 200US)

    I have no idea what the specifications mean, DTS, Dolby Digital but there are some many versions to them! Does anyone know what the difference is, i guess more is better, but are they brand specific? DTS ES, DTS EX, DTS Neo, i'm so confused, plus Dolby digital has like ES or EX too.....Also when it says 6.1 discrete input, does it mean it does have it or it can accept future upgrades to 6.1 (so 5.1 but will be able to support 6.1).

    Does anyone know of any good and in-expensive amplifiers that they can recommend?
    Any help or comments or opinions would be very helpful!

  2. #2
    Forum Regular
    Join Date
    Apr 2004
    Hutto, TX

    I like Denon

    Two months ago I was in the same position you are in now. We had a Harmon Kardon AVR320 that went down after only six months of use. Problem was, it was the second one in a row to do that. We now think, after reading some posts on this board, that it is the temp sensor in the power supply transformer. Seems others had the same problem after HK started outsourcing some stuff.

    We ended up going to a Denon AVR 2803 and it is great! Turns out that losing the HK was a good thing as the Denon sounds twice as good and we would have never known had the HK number two not died on us.

    If I were you - drop the Sony, the HK, and the Marantz off the list first, then consider the rest. As for the fancy terms, unless you are a real audiophile, just go for something with Dolby Digital and DTS and let the rest of the terms come along for the ride. IOW - just get the best basic sounding amp you can afford and don't worry about the rest. Many people never even use those other modes.

    Good luck!

    "God makes the wind. We set the sails."

  3. #3
    Forum Regular N. Abstentia's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2004
    I would drop everything but Marantz and Denon, then fight between those two. Keep in mind they are both very similar as Denon owns Marantz. Personally, I've found Marantz to be of higher quality but I'm not familiar with the particular units you're looking at.

  4. #4
    Suspended topspeed's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2003
    Denon doesn't own Marantz, they are both owned by the same conglomerate (the name escapes me) that also recently purchased Macintosh. All 3 operate independently of each other and don't share technology at all.

    Dolby digital and DTS are two different decoding formats used for surround sound. Your source player (i.e. dvd player, sacd, dvd-a, etc.) will need to support these formats and unless you have an older unit, most likely will. Older units didn't have a DTS output so you would obviously not be able to decode movies in DTS, irregardless of DTS EX or ES. DTS NEO 6 is a decoder that turns two channel information into surround sound much like Dolby Pro Logic II or DPL2x. I wouldn't worry about it too much just enjoy your new toys.

    Most people here gravitate to either Denon or Yamaha. Both are very good although Yamaha might have their auto calibration YPAO on their lower models (I'm unsure) which is a very handy feature indeed. You can't really go wrong with either.

    Good luck

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