Receiver and Processor Reviews
- Written by Jim Milton
- Published on 05 August 2013
Back in my college days, I had a roommate that had a nice stereo Pioneer receiver. It cost him a few hundred bucks. Since it was pre-digital, the inputs were pretty basic. Simply hook up to a cassette deck and turntable and we reveled in the audiophile sounds that its 30 watts/channel produced. Ah, the 70's were the "golden era" of audio. Point being, everybody has to start somewhere in their journey to musical nirvana. Fast forward to 2013 and now for around $500 you can get a 7.1 surround, network capable, DSP loaded, phone/Android integrated, Bluetooth, 80 watt/channel Elite receiver from Pioneer. True, the VSX-43 is their entry level Elite receiver, but it is packed with features that would have cost you a lot of money, even just a few years ago. But does the VSX-43 have what it takes to be the brain and brawn you are looking for in a modern home entertainment system?
- Written by Chris Heinonen
- Published on 26 June 2013
Marantz came out with their AV7005 processor a few years ago, which contains almost all of the high-end processing and features that people wanted, but at a lower price-point than almost any processor out there. Now Marantz has some back with the AV7701, a replacement for the AV7005 that brings it up to date with the modern streaming functions of current receivers and processors, and adds a few nice other touches as well while keeping that aggressive price-point. Has this update let Marantz keep this little niche to themselves again? I swapped the AV7701 in for my AV7005 to see if I could tell a difference between the two.
- Written by Robert Kozel
- Published on 09 May 2012
The Integra name always makes my short list of leading companies in the receiver and processor market space. While Integra is a premium manufacturer of high-end A/V equipment catering to custom A/V installers, their products offer a great mix of leading-edge technology along with outstanding performance at an attainable price. At CEDIA 2011 this past September, Integra introduced their latest product updates, including the flagship DTR-80.3 receiver, which I cover in this review.
- Written by Chris Heinonen
- Published on 16 January 2013
Pioneer has been revising and refining their Class D amplifier technology inside of their Elite receivers for a few years now. The performance has kept improving, as it is one of the few receivers out there that actually delivers its rated power output into all channels at once. Pioneer's SC68 is a 9.1 receiver, and yes, there are nine power amplifiers in there, rated at 140 watts each. It weighs only 39 pounds. How do they get that much power in a 39 pound package? The Class D amplifiers.
- Written by Kevin Lichterman
- Published on 02 February 2012
Like most people I have some pet peeves. When I shop for televisions, I am always hoping to find one without speakers. I have a dedicated theater with speakers and electronics that are leaps and bounds ahead of what I could possibly get in a TV. I don't need speakers; I'll never turn them on. I don't want them! Simply having them adds cost, complexity, and size to my TV. I don't want to pay for what I won't use! So, instead of TV's built-in speakers, a receiver will deliver much better quality sound, and surround sound at that. NAD's new T757 is reviewed here, and it does the job well.
- Written by John E. Johnson, Jr.
- Published on 25 October 2012
Classé is considered one of the finest audio product manufacturers in North America. They market preamplifiers, power amplifiers, and surround sound processors (SSPs). The SSP-800 is their current processor. It's been around for awhile, and they have no plans to replace it with a new model in the near future, but there have been some firmware updates along the way. So, I decided that Secrets should have a look and listen to what I was sure would be a fine product. Was I right?
- Written by Chris Heinonen
- Published on 30 January 2012
I've reviewed a fair number of receivers, and owned a fair number of them myself as well. The unit that I was the most sad to part with was the Pioneer SC-27 a couple years ago. With its Class D amps, it was fast and powerful, but not harsh. The new SC-57 is a 9.1 receiver, with Class D amplification, but Pioneer has built the amplifier modules themselves rather than using ICEPower modules. Was the sound different? Read on . . .
- Written by Ross Jones
- Published on 23 July 2012
Integra has produced a high-quality, high value product in the DTR 50.3 7.2 receiver. It has all the bells and whistles you could ask for in a modern receiver, and still has that clean, neutral Integra sound. Read our review and find out why we say, "Definitely recommended!"
- Written by Gabriel Lowe
- Published on 09 January 2012
Having both reviewed and owned several Onkyo receiver models over the last few years, I have come to expect an excellent product that is both packed with features and performs extremely well. The Onkyo TX-NR809 network receiver was announced in May of 2011, and right away, it made me salivate. So, here is the review.
- Written by Chris Eberle
- Published on 01 June 2012
NAD, which stands for New Acoustic Dimension, was founded in 1972 with one simple goal: to reproduce sound as faithfully as possible. Eschewing bells and whistles, NAD products are all about simplicity, value and performance. From their earliest components, like the legendary 3020 integrated amplifier, to today’s multi-channel amps and preamps, they have never wavered from this mantra. Here, we review separates: the NAD T 187 7.1 A/V SSP and the T 975 seven-channel power amplifier.
- Written by Cory Potts
- Published on 14 November 2011
Anthem is a company that is well-known in audiophile circles for cost-no-object separates and excellent separate power amplifiers. Anthem is the parent company to Paradigm, whose Studio 20 v.3 monitors were used in conjunction with the Anthem seven-channel MRX 300 AV receiver for this review.