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AV Processor Recommendation

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Vivek

Vivek

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I went with a used ATI signature series amp. I was tempted by class D (Hypex/Purifi) but the higher SINAD seemed more apt for my use (music listening) as opposed to movies.

On a different note, I looked into NAD as well. Great price on the combo btw. I was thrown off by the NAD M17V2 review my Amir.
The NAD deal is gone. Need to be faster next time’
 
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Vivek

Vivek

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Have been following this forum religiously for months now :)
Have had some Hifi equipment for a while but not an expert 2007- KEF IQ50 with Denon 1908. 2010 - B&W CM7 with Marantz AV 5014 followed by Sony AV STR 1050 (2015) and BlueSound Powernode 2i (2019). Had used Wharfedale for surround speakers and a Wharfedale center during the time I had the Sony and Marantz av receiver.

Am based in Denmark (last 6 years) Last week I upgraded to B&W 702 S2 and intend to buy the Center and a pair of SVS 2000 Subwoofers. Will use the old Wharefadale surrounds (need to find them in storage!).

Write to this forums seeking suggestion on AV receiver or AV processor. I am inclined to do the below based on all a lot of reading primarily on this forum:
1. Buy the Denon X6700H ( Anthem AV 60 is the Second Choice)
2. Buy a 3 channel Purify (Danish) board based Class D amplifier.
3. Use the Denon as a Pre Amplifier for the front stage and power the rears with Denon's built in amp
( Buy a second small Class D amp for rears if I go with the Anthem AV 60)
4. Continue to use blue sound for Music with the new Purity amplifier (Dont know how, but want to)

Based on your experiences would like to know, do & donts...

Cheers

Based on discussions here and my love for the Danish :) Purify Eigentakt amplifier Module. I have decided to buy the NAD M28 as the a surroud amplifier.
The question that remains in my head is , should I simply go with Denon x3700h for av processing or should I do something else? Is running a Denon x3700H as a av processor with a NAD M28 Eigentakt amplifier a bit underwhelming?
 
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Vivek

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Guys, my local audio ealor has suggested that I go in for a
1. A denon x3700h or x4700h with a Nad m33 integrated amp to drive my front floor standers at around USD 6000

2. Tjene is a sweet offer for Yamaha 3080 with emotive XP’s gen 3 3 channel amp for USD 3000

Anu suggestions
 
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Vivek

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Hi Guys
Thank you for all your feedback and guidance.

I went in for a Denon x3700h and use it as a preprocessor along with a Nad M27 for amplification. See my setup for some reason the pics invert when downscaled!

My speakers are Fronts: a pair of B&W 702s2 , Center: htm72, Surrounds: a pair of 607, Sub: a pair of SVS pb2000.

If not for Covid, would have invited you all for a beer and a listening session. Of course you would have to travel to lovely Denmark first.

The movies sound unbelievably muscular. There is a lot of headroom remaining due to the external amplification.

I am not happy however for the following reasons:

1. Music: this is not a audiophile setup. In pure direct mode and stereo mode the sound is muted and lacks energy at lower volumes. It plays well at higher volumes but that gets stress full to listen over long periods of time.

2. Center Speaker: Despite the free audyssey room correction. The center (B&W HTM72) sounds thin. One has to focus on dialogue or it ain’t clear. It was never an issue with my previous 2.2 setup with Nad Blue sound power node as amplification.

3. HEOS app: It is allright allows you to set music/movie modes straight from the app but as a whole when compared to the bluesound app, it is clunky and has downright poor usability. The volume gain integration with Spotify or tidal is 6 units to one click. You can easily put you setup to protect mode by accidentally clicking a few times on the phones volume rocker.

5. The volume fluctuates from stereo to surround i.e. when you switch from reasonable listening volume on stereo mode to surround mode. You have to increase the volume to be make it comprehendible.

All in all not a great listening experience. I feel that the m27 is a great piece of amplification being let down by the x3700h for music and HEOS as an streaming ecosystem. The center weakness is also hated by the wife as she is unable decipher dialogues even if dip into a pack of chips whilst seated next to her. The crackling sound of the chips pack supersedes the center dialogue!

I am beginning to think my options are either to return the x3700h or buy a preamp with an HT bypass.
 

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Grandzoltar

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The placement of your center is less then ideal. The tweeter is inline with your shins. I know you want your electronics to breathe but your center would be better placed on the top of the table. Also it's recessed in a cubby which counts against the sq. Auddessy needs to be done exactly with all measurements no more then 2ft from the mlp (or the meter equivalent) use a tape measure and use all 8 positions. Download the auddessy app too and have more customization.
 

oupee

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1. Music: this is not a audiophile setup. In pure direct and stereo mode the sound is muted and lacks energy at lower volumes. It plays well at higher volumes but that is stress full to listen for long periods.

One of the reasons I returned the 4700 was the stereo sound. I solved it until SR8015. The fact that the 3700 measures well does not mean that it sounds good and you will no longer save the bad analog part of the av processor with a quality power amplifier.
i am using google translator
 
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Vivek

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The placement of your center is less then ideal. The tweeter is inline with your shins. I know you want your electronics to breathe but your center would be better placed on the top of the table. Also it's recessed in a cubby which counts against the sq. Auddessy needs to be done exactly with all measurements no more then 2ft from the mlp (or the meter equivalent) use a tape measure and use all 8 positions. Download the auddessy app too and have more customization.
I had missed out my Center in the previous pic. It is not in a cubby nor recessed. I am changing my Av furniture (custom furniture takes time in Denmark during these times). When I receive the new av racks, my center will set at 60cm from the 37cm that it is now. I do not however believe that height is the culprit here.
 

Sancus

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In pure direct mode and stereo mode the sound is muted and lacks energy at lower volumes.

Pure Direct disables bass management and Audyssey. It's useless for anything other than A/B tests.

2. Center Speaker: Despite the free audyssey room correction. The center (B&W HTM72) sounds thin. One has to focus on dialogue or it ain’t clear. It was never an issue with my previous 2.2 setup with Nad Blue sound power node as amplification.

You can just turn the center up if you really want. I have a Denon 4500H and no issues at all with center channel volume on a Genelec 8351B. Typically at -10 to -15dB for most film/tv content.

5. The volume fluctuates from stereo to surround i.e. when you switch from reasonable listening volume on stereo mode to surround mode. You have to increase the volume to be make it comprehendible.

Not really sure what this means. What's "stereo mode" and "surround mode"?? Multi-channel soundtracks are often mixed with significantly more dynamic range than the stereo ones. There is a wide range of mixing levels across all content. I have to change volume by +/- 20dB across different types of content and music to get the same volume level. That's just how things work.
 
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Vivek

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Sancus,

Stereo Performance
The stereo mode performance is nothing to write home about either though it is indeed a tad better than Direct. The order being PDirect<Direct<Stereo. The stereo performance does not match my Bluesound at normal audible levels. A friends NAD D3045 connected to my m27 offers immensely clear transparent precise 2 channel soundstage compared to th Denon.

At higher volumes (50 and above), the denon is good as the others mentioned above.

Center Speaker
I did play around with the center volume but I will try again to -10 to -15 tonight and report back :)

Volume fluctuation Use Case
I play a documentary on Netflix in Stereo at 35db with the denon in stereo mode. the moment i switch to the Dolby Surround. I have to change volume to suit the previous listening level. I would expect the Denon upmix the content to dolby and be able to output across my 5.2 speaker setup whilst keeping audibility the same. Perhaps that is not the things work but shouldn't they?
 

Sancus

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Sancus,
Stereo Performance
The stereo mode performance is nothing to write home about either though it is indeed a tad better than Direct. The order being PDirect<Direct<Stereo. The stereo performance does not match my Bluesound at normal audible levels. A friends NAD D3045 connected to my m27 offers immensely clear transparent precise 2 channel soundstage compared to th Denon.

At higher volumes (50 and above), the denon is good as the others mentioned above.

Center Speaker
I did play around with the center volume but I will try again to -10 to -15 tonight and report back :)

I meant that I normally listen at -10 to -15, sometimes -20 if it's late at night or for louder stuff. -20dB is about 60 on the absolute scale if you're using that, you can swap in the settings. Audyssey does calibrate SPL levels but content loudness is poorly standardized. Assuming everything is calibrated correctly, -20dB would be 65dB average, 85dB peak, which is pretty quiet to me.

At those levels no changes are required to the center channel level for that to sound fine. But there's no reason you can't change it if you want. Adding +2 or +3 dB to the center channel level in Speaker settings above the automatic Audyssey level should be fine. It's my understanding that this is pretty commonly done as most center channel speakers are poor. The B&W HTM72 is the typical 2-way MTM layout so it would qualify.

I don't really have any comments on your issues with stereo performance. My experience is that there simply are not any arbitrary audible differences in quality between electronics, it's solely a question of settings and any room correction. We know from the reviews that the stereo performance of all Denons is a dead flat line in terms of frequency response.

I play a documentary on Netflix in Stereo at 35db with the denon in stereo mode. the moment i switch to the Dolby Surround. I have to change volume to suit the previous listening level. I would expect the Denon upmix the content to dolby and be able to output across my 5.2 speaker setup whilst keeping audibility the same. Perhaps that is not the things work but shouldn't they?

I have never tried to force a stereo downmix of surround before, seems strange, but I just tested it on a random show(Julie & The Phantoms) and stereo might be a little louder but I didn't note too much difference. This could vary based on content quite a bit, though. Doesn't seem too relevant to me as I would never want to downmix surround to stereo.
 

Grandzoltar

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downmix surround to stereo.
Down mixing a surround signal to stereo causes that glitch seen in Amir's x4700 measurements. Playing stereo content in stereo is fine but taking 7.1 or 5.1 and down mixing to stereo invokes a crash in measured performance.
 

Sancus

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Down mixing a surround signal to stereo causes that glitch seen in Amir's x4700 measurements. Playing stereo content in stereo is fine but taking 7.1 or 5.1 and down mixing to stereo invokes a crash in measured performance.

I don't think this is true. His configuration was very specific and not a general downmix.

"For reasons that are unknown at this point but is being investigated by Denon engineering, when feeding only two channels to AVR but in 8 channel configuration, and the AVR is configured as just Left and Right speakers, the noise level goes up substantially and there is potential for clipping on maximum level signal."

So you would need to have your surround speakers set to None, AND also somehow be feeding no data for your surround channels while telling the AVR that it is a surround data stream. I don't think this is even possible without a misconfigured PC.

In any case, the 'crashed' performance was only 87dB SINAD vs 96, which is almost certainly inaudible, especially in a household scenario.
 

Dj7675

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Hi Guys
Thank you for all your feedback and guidance.

I went in for a Denon x3700h and use it as a preprocessor along with a Nad M27 for amplification. See my setup for some reason the pics invert when downscaled!

My speakers are Fronts: a pair of B&W 702s2 , Center: htm72, Surrounds: a pair of 607, Sub: a pair of SVS pb2000.

If not for Covid, would have invited you all for a beer and a listening session. Of course you would have to travel to lovely Denmark first.

The movies sound unbelievably muscular. There is a lot of headroom remaining due to the external amplification.

I am not happy however for the following reasons:

1. Music: this is not a audiophile setup. In pure direct mode and stereo mode the sound is muted and lacks energy at lower volumes. It plays well at higher volumes but that gets stress full to listen over long periods of time.

2. Center Speaker: Despite the free audyssey room correction. The center (B&W HTM72) sounds thin. One has to focus on dialogue or it ain’t clear. It was never an issue with my previous 2.2 setup with Nad Blue sound power node as amplification.

3. HEOS app: It is allright allows you to set music/movie modes straight from the app but as a whole when compared to the bluesound app, it is clunky and has downright poor usability. The volume gain integration with Spotify or tidal is 6 units to one click. You can easily put you setup to protect mode by accidentally clicking a few times on the phones volume rocker.

5. The volume fluctuates from stereo to surround i.e. when you switch from reasonable listening volume on stereo mode to surround mode. You have to increase the volume to be make it comprehendible.

All in all not a great listening experience. I feel that the m27 is a great piece of amplification being let down by the x3700h for music and HEOS as an streaming ecosystem. The center weakness is also hated by the wife as she is unable decipher dialogues even if dip into a pack of chips whilst seated next to her. The crackling sound of the chips pack supersedes the center dialogue!

I am beginning to think my options are either to return the x3700h or buy a preamp with an HT bypass.
I have an x8500 and an M27. This is my 2 cents:
1-Get the Audyssey app (If you haven’t already) and run audyssey via the app. With the app, limit correctIon to around 300-500hz. Experiment with a few different cutoff points. Many people do not like using Audyssey above somewhere between 300-1K. Add some bass via the curve editor in the app. A simple one is to add a point at +3/+5 at 20 hz. Add the same amount to the sub level.

2-If bass is not good at low volume, use the DEQ function. Experiment with the reference level offset. Start with +15, the +10 etc and stop when bass seems good at low volume

3-It is difficult to tell but be sure the tweeter of your center channel is at ear height or painting at your ears.

Audyssey offers a lot of tools to get good sound at all volumes. Between the app, DEQ, reference level offset, etc I’m sure you will get something you like.
 
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Vivek

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I Audyssey offers a lot of tools to get good sound at all volumes. Between the app, DEQ, reference level offset, etc I’m sure you will get something you like.
Thanks and I believe the above too. I will study a little more about Audyssey room correction as I do not have a clue on how to do it professionally. I should however be able to learn and get it done.
 
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Vivek

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Just a
I have an x8500 and an M27. This is my 2 cents:
1-Get the Audyssey app (If you haven’t already) and run audyssey via the app. With the app, limit correctIon to around 300-500hz. Experiment with a few different cutoff points. Many people do not like using Audyssey above somewhere between 300-1K. Add some bass via the curve editor in the app. A simple one is to add a point at +3/+5 at 20 hz. Add the same amount to the sub level.

2-If bass is not good at low volume, use the DEQ function. Experiment with the reference level offset. Start with +15, the +10 etc and stop when bass seems good at low volume

3-It is difficult to tell but be sure the tweeter of your center channel is at ear height or painting at your ears.

Audyssey offers a lot of tools to get good sound at all volumes. Between the app, DEQ, reference level offset, etc I’m sure you will get something you like.
a quick question why did you go for a x8500 and a m27 instead of a x3700h?
 

Sancus

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Ah that reminds me, B&W are one of those brands that traditionally include the "BBC dip". This is particularly bad in the case of Denon/Audyssey as Audyssey ALSO includes this in the standard room EQ. So with B&Ws you would be doubling the dip in that region. That could definitely cause very audible issues. You can only disable this with the app.

I have an x8500 and an M27. This is my 2 cents:
1-Get the Audyssey app (If you haven’t already) and run audyssey via the app. With the app, limit correctIon to around 300-500hz. Experiment with a few different cutoff points. Many people do not like using Audyssey above somewhere between 300-1K. Add some bass via the curve editor in the app. A simple one is to add a point at +3/+5 at 20 hz. Add the same amount to the sub level.

2-If bass is not good at low volume, use the DEQ function. Experiment with the reference level offset. Start with +15, the +10 etc and stop when bass seems good at low volume

Agreed, IMO it is very important for all Denon users to buy the MultEQ app so that you can turn that dip off, modify the target curve etc. Though setting the frequency limiter only includes the room correction EQ pass. So if you use DEQ, it will still boost the highs. Not the end of the world, but good to be aware of.

Additionally, I strongly believe a Umik-1 and learning the basics of REW is one of the best one-time investments you can make in achieving good sound. It doesn't matter what equipment you own now or in the future, being able to see what's going on makes pinpointing issues much faster and more precise and gives you a much better reference to share with others when you're asking for advice.
 
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Vivek

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Ah that reminds me, B&W are one of those brands that traditionally include the "BBC dip". This is particularly bad in the case of Denon/Audyssey as Audyssey ALSO includes this in the standard room EQ. So with B&Ws you would be doubling the dip in that region. That could definitely cause very audible issues. You can only disable this with the app.



Agreed, IMO it is very important for all Denon users to buy the MultEQ app so that you can turn that dip off, modify the target curve etc. Though setting the frequency limiter only includes the room correction EQ pass. So if you use DEQ, it will still boost the highs. Not the end of the world, but good to be aware of.

Additionally, I strongly believe a Umik-1 and learning the basics of REW is one of the best one-time investments you can make in achieving good sound. It doesn't matter what equipment you own now or in the future, being able to see what's going on makes pinpointing issues much faster and more precise and gives you a much better reference to share with others when you're asking for advice.
Any good links to study and understand the fundamentals of room equalization.
 
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Vivek

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On an other note. Late evening yesterday, After tons of grumbling at home on the sound quality (or lack of) from the Mrs . Went back to my local hifi dealership who incidentally had a NAD 758 v3. I bought it home to primarily test stereo performance relative to my ears ( and the Mrs)

Hooked up the Nad 758 with the m27 and the TV. I just cannot get the OSD menu on the TV! The HDMI cable is connected to TVs arc and the other end to HDMI out on the Nad. I also tried connecting to all other HDMI ports ion the NAD simply could not get the NAD to display the menu on the TV. The Denon setup was a piece of cake (and hey I am pretty decent at general troubleshooting). Any suggestions?
 
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