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Mark Thenewb

What receiver do I get?

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Hey, my name is Mark and I'm having trouble buying my first surround system. I'm thinking of a 5.1 setup at first, but might one day upgrade to 7.2. The speakers that are currently in my consideration are the Klipsch RP-8000f and Klipsch RP-504c, I might pair that up with a BIC America F12 and an RP-500m to complete my setup. Does anyone have any suggestions? I'm not that new to speakers, I understand connections and setups at a decent level. Where I'm struggling is what receiver to buy. At first I was considering the Yamaha RX-V683BL, but I later learned that this would be too weak to drive my setup. Now I know I need to spend over a grand on the receiver unit alone. With that said, any suggestions for a receiver? I apparently need close to 150 watts per channel to drive these speakers adequately, is that true? 

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Welcome, Mark, to the Forums!
 

I’d consider that Yamaha, or the current Pioneer Elite 7.2 model. VSXLX104.

 

Should be enough power.

Edited by Sancho Panza
VSXLX104

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AVR technology changes faster than my underwear.  Buy an AVR that has the features and channels and room correction DSP that meets your needs.  One feature I would recommend is pre-outs for all channels.  This usually means you get a better quality AVR and it keeps open the option to add an external amp down the road.  I've had good luck with Yamaha AVRs over the years - very good quality - but any of the major Japanese brands are fine.

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9 hours ago, Sancho Panza said:

Welcome, Mark, to the Forums!
 

I’d consider that Yamaha, or the current Pioneer Elite 7.2 model. VSXLX104.

 

Should be enough power.

Interesting, so I don't actually need speakers that can output 150 watts per channel? If the Yamaha RX-V683BL are good enough for me, then that would save me alot of time and money. I was told by others that apparently, something like the Denon X4400H is the bare minimum if I want to get decent quality out of my Klipsch setup. What would I really be losing if I don't go for the much more expensive Denon receiver and choose the Yamahas? 

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9 hours ago, pbphoto said:

AVR technology changes faster than my underwear.  Buy an AVR that has the features and channels and room correction DSP that meets your needs.  One feature I would recommend is pre-outs for all channels.  This usually means you get a better quality AVR and it keeps open the option to add an external amp down the road.  I've had good luck with Yamaha AVRs over the years - very good quality - but any of the major Japanese brands are fine.

So, what you're saying is that I should prioritize features when looking for a good receiver, and leave the power handling to a dedicated amplifier. This idea is new to me, do you have any suggestions of a receiver and amp combo for my setup? Also, good to hear you like things clean. 

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15 hours ago, Mark Thenewb said:

I apparently need close to 150 watts per channel to drive these speakers adequately, is that true? 

 

It's hard to say whether it's true.  Seems the electronics manufacturers have several standards from which to choose when it comes to AVR ratings.  I don't do AVRs, and the other day someone mentioned one (a budget model, I believe it was Yamaha) and out of curiosity I looked it up.  I don't reckon it was more than 5 channels, and the rating of "100 Watts per channel" was with only two channels driven at a single frequency at 10% THD.  How is one supposed to compare on paper that against something rated like:

AMPLIFIER

  • Power output Stereo Mode
  • 110W (8Ω within rated distortion)
  • Full Disclosure Power (all channels driven simultaneously)
  • 7 x 60W (0.05% THD, 20-20kHz)
  • IHF Dynamic Power
  •  
  • 8 Ohms
  • 137W
  • 4 Ohms
  • 243W
  • Total Harmonic Distortion at rated power
  • <0.08%
  • IM distortion at rated power
  • <0.08%
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I couldn't get out of the "rich text" mode after pasting that in above.  Kept wanting to add new formatted bullet points...

 

So that amp (the lowest model # AVR at nadelectronics.com) will make 420 Watts total over all its channels, full-range, at 0.05% distortion.   I'd bet that's pretty close to the nearly 90 degree upward "knee" in the distortion/power graph.  I don't know, but if that includes driving an LFE channel and you've got a self-powered sub, seems you'd still have about 420 Watts total for however many channels to divvy up (the capacity of the power supply(s) has got to be the limiting factor).  If you're only using 3.1 or 5.1 you'd easily have 100 full-range-simultaneously Watts available for the two main channels.  With most any Klipsch gear that would be fairly formidable for most rooms.

 

I don't know how the NAD AVR stuff compares to that from Denon, et al, but I'd wager it's no slouch, and frankly would be where I'd look first anyway.  I've had NAD gear running (when anything was) since about '80.

 

 

 

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7 hours ago, Mark Thenewb said:

So, what you're saying is that I should prioritize features when looking for a good receiver, and leave the power handling to a dedicated amplifier. This idea is new to me, do you have any suggestions of a receiver and amp combo for my setup? Also, good to hear you like things clean. 

I would suggest starting out with an AVR that has multi-channel pre-outs because it keeps your options open and puts you into a decent class of AVR.  Manufacturers do not put multi-channel pre-outs on their lower quality AVRs.  Your speakers are super efficient so I don't think you need a ton of power to drive them - you might be very happy with just the AVR.  I would recommend looking at accessories4less for a used Yamaha RX-A1080 or something similar.  Then maybe in the future you could invest in a 2-channel integrated amp with HT-bypass to drive the L/R speakers, removing the bulk the of the load from the AVR.

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9 hours ago, glens said:

I couldn't get out of the "rich text" mode after pasting that in above.  Kept wanting to add new formatted bullet points...

 

So that amp (the lowest model # AVR at nadelectronics.com) will make 420 Watts total over all its channels, full-range, at 0.05% distortion.   I'd bet that's pretty close to the nearly 90 degree upward "knee" in the distortion/power graph.  I don't know, but if that includes driving an LFE channel and you've got a self-powered sub, seems you'd still have about 420 Watts total for however many channels to divvy up (the capacity of the power supply(s) has got to be the limiting factor).  If you're only using 3.1 or 5.1 you'd easily have 100 full-range-simultaneously Watts available for the two main channels.  With most any Klipsch gear that would be fairly formidable for most rooms.

 

I don't know how the NAD AVR stuff compares to that from Denon, et al, but I'd wager it's no slouch, and frankly would be where I'd look first anyway.  I've had NAD gear running (when anything was) since about '80.

 

 

 

So what would you recommend me to get to power these speakers? I'm still lost here. I have people saying a lower model Yamaha would do just fine, while others are saying a higher model rated at 125 watts per channel is bare minimum. 

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It depends on how many channels you listen to, how big your room is, and how loud you listen.  Google search "SPL calculator."  I suspect that any AVR with pre-outs would be plenty unless you listen to multi-channel at rock-concert levels.

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5 hours ago, pbphoto said:

I would suggest starting out with an AVR that has multi-channel pre-outs because it keeps your options open and puts you into a decent class of AVR.  Manufacturers do not put multi-channel pre-outs on their lower quality AVRs.  Your speakers are super efficient so I don't think you need a ton of power to drive them - you might be very happy with just the AVR.  I would recommend looking at accessories4less for a used Yamaha RX-A1080 or something similar.  Then maybe in the future you could invest in a 2-channel integrated amp with HT-bypass to drive the L/R speakers, removing the bulk the of the load from the AVR.

In that case, wouldn't Yamaha RX-V685 be a good option? It has 90 watts per channel, and has pre-out for front and subs. 

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Be careful with that preamp - first of all, it's an integrated amp without home-theater bypass - this means you will have to set the volume knob to a set position and calibrate it with your Yamaha (i.e. it does not pass the L/R signal thru directly to the amp, bypassing its preamp section.)  Second, it has no other analog inputs other than the L/R pair coming from your AVR which limits any future two-channel listening that you might want to do without going thru your AVR (what if you want to hook up a turntable or a nice DAC for example.). Finally, it looks like a really cheap Chinese made POS.  I would pass.  Your RX-V685 is probably better - stick with that for now and add a real amp or integrated amp down the road.

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12 hours ago, Mark Thenewb said:

So what would you recommend me to get to power these speakers? I'm still lost here. I have people saying a lower model Yamaha would do just fine, while others are saying a higher model rated at 125 watts per channel is bare minimum. 

 

It looks like the unit you've selected will prove to be a fair value.  Apparently it'll make 90 Watts times 2 full-range cleanly.  You may find it somewhat lacking when you want to fill your whole house with sound while you're showering, cleaning, whatever.  Up to that point it ought to entirely satisfy you, for the money.

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20 hours ago, pbphoto said:

Be careful with that preamp - first of all, it's an integrated amp without home-theater bypass - this means you will have to set the volume knob to a set position and calibrate it with your Yamaha (i.e. it does not pass the L/R signal thru directly to the amp, bypassing its preamp section.)  Second, it has no other analog inputs other than the L/R pair coming from your AVR which limits any future two-channel listening that you might want to do without going thru your AVR (what if you want to hook up a turntable or a nice DAC for example.). Finally, it looks like a really cheap Chinese made POS.  I would pass.  Your RX-V685 is probably better - stick with that for now and add a real amp or integrated amp down the road.

Duly noted, I will look for a better pre amp. 

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10 hours ago, glens said:

 

It looks like the unit you've selected will prove to be a fair value.  Apparently it'll make 90 Watts times 2 full-range cleanly.  You may find it somewhat lacking when you want to fill your whole house with sound while you're showering, cleaning, whatever.  Up to that point it ought to entirely satisfy you, for the money.

That's good enough for me then, I live on the second floor of an apartment building, luckily my surrounding neighbors also have home theater, so I won't be causing trouble. It sounds like it would be adequate for some movies and mainly rock/jazz listening. 

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Should be.  I don't know.  I know the make Yamaha and that they've made some decent gear through the years, but that's all.  No familiarity with anything any kind of current from them.  I expect it'll be a fair value.

 

I looked up that NAD I referenced and saw $1300 prices, but they've evidently been discontinued and that could be a price indicating discount or jacked-up because they're highly desirable and drying up.  I don't have a clue.  I know I'd like to have their $3k model with the touch screen and those wonderful class D amps.

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I advise the OP to look elsewhere than the Yamaha RX-V line.  If you're set on Yamaha, you should look bare minimum at the RX-A Aventage lines.  The RX-V's have replaced most of the HTR line as the entry level Yamaha receivers and do not meet the same quality as the older RX-V models.  Make sure you look around for options on the RX-A's, they can be had for a decent price.

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