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Boilermaker86

Am I crazy?

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At first I didn’t know if I was remembering thing wrong, or something is missing from my system. When I was first starting out, I was reading avs forum a lot and there was a lot of talk on how Harman Kardon was a great, powerful receiver. I bought one and paired them up with my speakers. They sounded phenomenal. Long story short I had so many quality issues I had to finally switch to a different brand. I replaced it with the receiver I have now an Onkyo 805. I love that it is powerful and has great bass. The one thing I feel I am missing is the way the HK sounded. I watched Star Wads episode 3 on both and I felt like something was missing. I feel like with the HK the trumpets were so clear and it just felt like there was more of a separation of sound.  

 

Now this is what is in my memory from 10 years ago, but no matter how long I have my Onkyo 805, I never felt the same way about it. I almost feel the Onkyo is lifeless and lacks dynamics. What’s interesting is my Onkyo has Audyssey and HK has their ez set. Could it be a difference in the set up software. Audyssey sets all speakers at around -10 all around. I played around and set it back to 0 for all channels and it seemed to have more character to the sound. 

 

The last think I have to up grade is my receiver. How can I get great dynamics from the sound and feel the same way I once did. I was considering getting a Marantz 8012 because it is described as a warm sound. Would that make a difference? When I sold my speakers the guy that came over said he used to have an Onkyo and now has s Marantz and likes the sound a lot better. I heard that same comment from a few people. 

 

 

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Aren't we all?

 

Just kidding.  Every Pre- Amp/Amp / Receiver will have its own signature sound.  See if you can audition a Marantz.   

 

Best regards,

John

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I guess that’s what I was wondering. If different receives can have different sounds. I didn’t know if a receiver can make the sound more distinct and have better separation. That’s what I felt the HK had and didn’t know what other receiver brands would be similar. 

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I have always felt that Onkyo/Integra was pretty spot on neutral, even the 90's gear I have owned.  HK and Marantz are often referred to as warm leaning.

 

Even though your Onkyo 805 is a beast with a kick butt amp section, have you considered adding a high current amp to the mix?  It probably won't change the sound signature(unless tube amp) but the dynamics and punch gain should be noticed provided the amp is of better quality than what is in the Onkyo.

 

8 hours ago, Boilermaker86 said:

What’s interesting is my Onkyo has Audyssey and HK has their ez set. Could it be a difference in the set up software. Audyssey sets all speakers at around -10 all around. I played around and set it back to 0 for all channels and it seemed to have more character to the sound. 

Very possible this is a contributor.

 

Bill

 

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My old HK 430 will sound better than most anything i have heard....receivers anyway....I bought Integra AVR took awhile to get it to sound right but it is possible. I thought that auto set up would be killer...I was wrong...lol. I manually adjusted almost everything sounds much better now. 

Boilermaker you may want to go into the tone controls and equalizer and try your hand at it manually. 

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Audyssey set my center at -12 and mains at -9.5 and -8.5. So I was increasing the volume, but always had low voices. I manually adjusted the all front speakers to -9.5 and now it is much better. I’ll have to play around and maybe bump up the front left and right some more and see if that improves the sound. I was curious if the Audyssey XT 32 had some of these same issues and with the addition of dynamic eq and Dolby volume if it puts they dynamics back in the sound. I bet the ez set in HK just adjusted the distance and delays and didn’t set everything to -10.

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I loved the sound of HK AVR's and the ezseteq & logic7.  What I did find after a couple thousand dollars, is any AVR HK put out with HDMI will fail you and is unreliable to say the least.  Yes there are units out there still going, but the majority are failing.  They are out of the AVR game for good and their customer service is MIA.

 

I loved there sound so much I spent way to much money on HK AVR's before finally moving to Denon, and now Marantz.  Anything pre HDMI HK is great stuff.  Their first run of AVR's X54's were solid in power but the HDMI board would render it useless.  I owned the 354, 2600, 3650, and the flagship 3700(stay far away) plus the BDS577.  All had issues except the 2600.  The flagship 3700, the last AVR they produced is weak.  Advertised at 150wpc, but only put out about 32WPC ACD on the bench-yikes.

 

I currently use a HK990 for two channel, but that HK is in a league of it's own and also no HDMI.

 

For theater I use a Marantz 6010, I really like it, but I think the level of audyssey factors greatly in todays AVR.  I went from a midline Denon to the 6010 and it blew it out of the water, was it the Marantz itself, or the audyssey upgrade?  I have not tried other brands and their room correction but I hope to get to someday.  

 

Good luck in your search for that HK sound.

 

 

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Yep I went through the same thing. I had the HK 635 no hdmi, logic 7 and ez set. I liked it. But hd dvd and blu ray were just coming out. I got an HK 645 with hdmi. Lots of problems with HK and they sent me a brand new HK 745. The ceneter channel went out after 6 months of use. After they replaced it, I got the Onkyo and it has been reliable for 10 years. HK definitely had reliability issues. I’m glad dmb you had good luck with the newer Audyssey. 

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