Harman Kardon, yay or nay?

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PHiX

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Hi guys,


I'm thinking about replacing my philips fw-r7 stereo set because I've never been really satisfied with it. Now I don't want to get something disappointing and go for a quality solution. I've been thinking about getting a HK set with a dvd player in combo with a reciever and some surround speakers by JBL. It's at an attractive price level... but that made me think about something thats always the case with electronics. WYPFIWYG. What you pay for is what you get...


I heard that HK isn't what it used to be anymore ever since it turned Chinese. So my question is whether someone has experience with the (lower priced avr130-135-140) recievers of this brand.... or whether I should save up a little more and go for a Denon or Marantz?


Also, would it be better to go for a stereo reciever instead of a surround one? If it wont be the HK set I'll be buying I will start with 2 speakers whether or not it's a 2 or 6 channel reciever. Will the sound of a surround reciever with 2 speakers set in stereo be anywhere nearly as good as on just a stereo reciever?


Any advice would be nice and appreciated. :)
 

icantpod

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PHiX said:
Hi guys,

Will the sound of a surround reciever with 2 speakers set in stereo be anywhere nearly as good as on just a stereo reciever?
Of course, why not? That is pretty much what everybody buys these days. I got an Onkyo for $250 and its great.

And in any event, the weak link in the chain is going to be your iPod with any good system.
 

PHiX

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icantpod said:
And in any event, the weak link in the chain is going to be your iPod with any good system.

I am aware of this, fortunately I have all albums on cd as well. Although the dock which Marantz has in the pipeline looks very attractive and functional:




Looks pricy as well...


They guy at the (audiophile) store however, said that he could take a 7 way reciever of $3000 and a stereo one of $1000 and in stereo the 1k would blow away the 3k one. I'm not an audiophile though, but I want my music to sound good.
 

icantpod

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PHiX said:
I am aware of this, fortunately I have all albums on cd as well. Although the dock which Marantz has in the pipeline looks very attractive and functional:




Looks pricy as well...


They guy at the (audiophile) store however, said that he could take a 7 way reciever of $3000 and a stereo one of $1000 and in stereo the 1k would blow away the 3k one. I'm not an audiophile though, but I want my music to sound good.
Sounds like that guy is full of it to me.

The best solution is to try it for yourself and see if YOU can tell.
 

rockmyplimsoul

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They guy at the (audiophile) store however, said that he could take a 7 way reciever of $3000 and a stereo one of $1000 and in stereo the 1k would blow away the 3k one. I'm not an audiophile though, but I want my music to sound good.
this is a very generalized statement, but there can be some truth to it. it is conceivable that there are 5 and 7 channel receivers out there that are geared more towards processing surround-sound and may cut corners in performance when it comes to processing a 2-channel audio PCM signal.
 

icantpod

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I think the relevent question here is:

Do most brand name surround receivers in the $300+ range sound absolutely fantastic for playing CDs through in 2-channel stereo? My answer is yes.
 

PHiX

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Thanks for the reply guys.


I guess I'll go for the surround option now, because I prefer the ability to upgrade above an audio quality difference I don't notice anyway.


Now the other question, is Harman Kardon still in the same league as Denon and Marantz?
 

bobb-mini

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If u spend any time watching DVD, you GOTTA have multichannels right? There is just no way to go around it.

Well first off, I am with icantpod. If yer gonna use the iPod as the source, IT DOESN'T MATTER, anything will do. Is when you get your source either from original CDs or have a PC/HTPC (Home Theater PC) hooked up to the stereo, THEN we start to care about the quality of the receiver/speakers.

Lets say DVD watching is low priority and your immediate goal is to get the best stereo sound at a budget, AND u intend to move out of the iPod. THINK SEPARATES. I know, a few of u are making faces, but I have always had separate and not 'cuz I got golden ears but 'cuz I can spend just the money needed to upgrade the part of the system I need at the moment, rather than try to throw money at it all at once. I recommend this route if your intention is to have a better than good system, use a source other than iPod, and your significant others don't mind u having a few more boxes in the entertaintment cabinet.

Don't forget the subwoofer. It's not for boom, it's for sound quality, u don't have to turn it up to annoy the neighbourds, it just FILLS the ambience.
 

PHiX

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Thanks for the link to that website, I already found it before... but it's hard to compare that way. Most are just reviews about a specific gadget, and I dont know how high each reviewer's standards are.


DVD watching is a low priority for me now, but I might want to connect it to a tv once I move to a place of my own. Right now I dont have space for a sub but I'll keep in mind to get one once I do.

By the way, at that audio store I saw a nice Marantz set of a $600 reciever and a $600 dvd / sa-cd player for $700 together because it was the 'old' model and final set in stock. I'm seriously considering getting something like that, but having to buy speakers as well it'll be more expensive than I was planning to spend. They had B&W speakers for $200 each. Sure, they might not be the best... but good enough to move em to the back in the future.
 
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TheBigNewt

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The audiophile rule of thumb is: spend half your $$ on your speakers. $600 for a DVD-sa-cd player is really high, especially since sa-cd is a dead format (Sony, think betamax). Try finding any sa-cds at your local music store. Spend more like $300 for the dvd, 3-500 on the amp, and at least 600 on speakers. The speakers are by far the weak link in the chain sound-wise.
 
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