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Marantz AV7705 Home Theater Processor Review

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Ignore the people saying a avr wth room correction will sound better than a analogue stereo that is basically a switch and pre amp.

My stereo analogue pre amp outclasses the AV pre by a mile, it simply sounds better, wider and higher soundstage
I do.

I run a Luminous Audio Axiom II Walker Mod Passive preamp (auditioned many before settling on that) , RME ADI-2-DAC fs, Moon 310lp phono pre w/320s power supply. Odyssey Kismet amp and Tekton Moabs.

The clarity is incredible, and would smoke the 7705 from that aspect. However, Tekton speakers benefit from Tube preamps and/or amps. I have a Odyssey Candela Tube Preamp on order, but with Covid delays, I have been waiting over 4 months, and I was getting frustrated. That is when I thought of trying the 7705. I will try it, but I don't see it winning out in the end.

I do also wonder if it is hearing problems, or just lack of critically listening to 2 channel music, when I hear "all components basically sound the same..."

That said, room correction definitely makes a difference, I of course use it in my HT. It's benefits should not be dismissed out of hand for a possible net gain with 2 channel listening.
 
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I have used several Marantz procs including multiple AVM770Xs and AVM880Xs the most recent being an AVM8805. Any one of them will pass a really good analogue signal as well as good surround (using the Marantz proc). All of my sound sources are separate external units passing hi end analougue or jitter free HDMI. Shop for an open box AVM770x sale somewhere and use the savings on better amps
 

peng

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I do also wonder if it is hearing problems, or just lack of critically listening to 2 channel music, when I hear "all components basically sound the same..."
In Harman's listening test studies they screened the participants, and hearing was one of the selection criteria. If you read those articles on DBTs done for speakers, it would seem clear the perceived advantage of the more expensive ones disappeared to varies degree when the listeners didn't know which one they listened to during the test.

One can hardly find a single credible DBT in which the listeners could identify the amps they listened to consistently. In one case it was a DIY 35 W tube amp vs a 250 W SS amp, same different and apparently that was "shocking", expectedly imo. So we can all believe what we believe, unless it is done in a controlled fashion, claims of one sounding better than another are just subjective in nature.

CordellAudio.com - Home Entertainment Show 2007

Results of that test:

"There were no "night and day" results. Indeed, for many attendees the differences were difficult to hear. Moreover, those who perceived a difference were just as often wrong in selecting which amplifier they thought was the tube amplifier. This shocked all of us."
 

Pdxwayne

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......

One can hardly find a single credible DBT in which the listeners could identify the amps they listened to consistently. In one case it was a DIY 35 W tube amp vs a 250 W SS amp, same different and apparently that was "shocking", expectedly imo. So we can all believe what we believe, unless it is done in a controlled fashion, claims of one sounding better than another are just subjective in nature.

CordellAudio.com - Home Entertainment Show 2007

Results of that test:

"There were no "night and day" results. Indeed, for many attendees the differences were difficult to hear. Moreover, those who perceived a difference were just as often wrong in selecting which amplifier they thought was the tube amplifier. This shocked all of us."
Disappointing article....What was the speakers used?

Here is a better one explaining why tube amps sound different with certain speakers:

https://www.audiosciencereview.com/...damping-factor-and-speakers.23968/post-808483
 

peng

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Disappointing article....What was the speakers used?

Here is a better one explaining why tube amps sound different with certain speakers:

https://www.audiosciencereview.com/...damping-factor-and-speakers.23968/post-808483
I think most people would agree that tube amps can definitely sound different than comparable SS amps (such as both class AB, push pull, output rating etc.) but I think the test in that article was one that intentionally used a tube amp that was design for accuracy/neutrality when used within limits and with the more "typical" speakers. I don't know that for sure, it's just my own take.. McIntosh's tube amps (recent models anyway) would seem to be the designed for "accuracy" tube. On their website, you won't find them telling potential buyers to expect a different "sound signature".

The only thing (that I could find) they said about their tube vs SS that came close to the sound signature thing is:

"Performance between vacuum tube and solid state (or transistor) gear is almost identical in technical specifications. Many users request vacuum tube units that offer a slightly classical "tube" or "warm" sound to the audio presentation. Tube and solid state models may be mixed and will all work together in a McIntosh component stereo system. Many now use downloaded music as their main media source. Sound quality will always depend on the quality of the download files and the music system interface. McIntosh offers the most advanced computer USB interface in most of our preamplifiers and integrated amplifiers which will maximize audio performance."
 

peng

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Would you please share an article which describes in details the hearing tests used to screen participants? Thanks!
I don't remember the one I have in mind but here's one that sort of mentioned something like that too:

Audio Musings by Sean Olive: The Dishonesty of Sighted Listening Tests

You would have to download the two the article referenced. I requested it and got it for free, otherwise you have to buy the paper. Dr. Toole also mentioned the importance of hearing ability in listening tests in his popular book and for some reason you can now download it for free, it is the older version so may be that's why:

Sound Reproduction The Acoustics and Psychoacoustics of Loudspeakers and Rooms Floyd Toole (2).pdf
Its a >500 page book but I would suggest you take a look of page 373 first. On that page, he mentioned a surprise finding:

"Surprisingly,
it was not the high-frequency hearing level that correlated with
the judgment variability but that at frequencies at or below 1 kHz."


I guess that explain why I never have trouble hearing differences between speakers.:D

Note that those are all about loudspeakers. If you read a lot of Tool's articles, papers and/or videos you would get the feeling that he wouldn't bother much on the electronics side because of the technological advance, they all have flat FR 20-20,000 Hz, low distortions etc etc..
 

Pdxwayne

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I don't remember the one I have in mind but here's one that sort of mentioned something like that too:

Audio Musings by Sean Olive: The Dishonesty of Sighted Listening Tests

You would have to download the two the article referenced. I requested it and got it for free, otherwise you have to buy the paper. Dr. Toole also mentioned the importance of hearing ability in listening tests in his popular book and for some reason you can now download it for free, it is the older version so may be that's why:

Sound Reproduction The Acoustics and Psychoacoustics of Loudspeakers and Rooms Floyd Toole (2).pdf
Its a >500 page book but I would suggest you take a look of page 373 first. On that page, he mentioned a surprise finding:

"Surprisingly,
it was not the high-frequency hearing level that correlated with
the judgment variability but that at frequencies at or below 1 kHz."


I guess that explain why I never have trouble hearing differences between speakers.:D

Note that those are all about loudspeakers. If you read a lot of Tool's articles, papers and/or videos you would get the feeling that he wouldn't bother much on the electronics side because of the technological advance, they all have flat FR 20-20,000 Hz, low distortions etc etc..
Thanks!

What I am most curious about are the tests being used to screen participants.

Is it more like "can one hear from 20hz to at least 10khz"?

Or, something more, like "can one hear the difference of at least 1db sound pressure difference"?

Are you able to screen through your articles to find out more. : )

Thanks!
 

bigguyca

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What are your thoughts of the Marantz 7706??? I'm in the market to upgrade from my onkyo rz 830. Denon 3700h, Marantz 7706 and maybe emotiva xmc 2. Already have amps.
The AV7706 is a nice unit. Likely you would just install it and it will work. The AV7706 is best used in balanced output mode, that is, from the XLR outputs. This will provide a clean 2.4V output. The single-ended outputs will only be really clean to 1.2V or so based on ASR measurements and my own. An X6700H, which as a similar price, will provide cleaner SE output to a much higher level if levels over 1.2V are required.

For at least two channel use with an optical digital input (haven't tested other modes), the AV7706 provides better performance when not in direct or pure direct mode. It appears that Marantz uses a combination of digital and analog volume control that avoids sending signals over -3dBFS to the DAC process which reduces THD+N. at least that's my theory. AKM DAC IC's do provide worse THD+N performance at close to 0dBFS.

The AV7706 is very different from say an X6700H in this regard. The X6700H provides more consistent performance. This raises the interesting question of how do most AVP's and AVR's actually process digital data in other than straight DAC use. A mix of digital and analog volume control makes sense.
 

Pdxwayne

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...
Note that those are all about loudspeakers. If you read a lot of Tool's articles, papers and/or videos you would get the feeling that he wouldn't bother much on the electronics side because of the technological advance, they all have flat FR 20-20,000 Hz, low distortions etc etc..
Well, even with flat FR, at least Amir still cares about Sinad, right?

Sinad of 70 vs sinad of 120, can one hear a difference? I remember Amir said after listening check of device with poor sinad:
Harsher highs and softer bass. Did anyone challenge him to do double blinds tests, no.....

Maybe we should start requiring Amir to prove what he heard? : P
 
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peng

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Well, even with flat FR, at least Amir still cares about Sinad, right?

Sinad of 70 vs sinad of 120, can one hear a difference? I remember Amir said after listening check of device with poor sinad:
Harsher highs and softer bass. Did anyone challenge him to do double blinds tests, no.....

Maybe we should start requiring Amir to prove what he heard? : P
You may get a partial (and unreliable, I would think) answer here:

Distortion Listening Test | Audio Science Review (ASR) Forum

He did not score that well, actually I did Okay and I could tell difference between my amps.:D
 

Sal1950

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You forgot about hearing tests.

Is one's hearing good enough to hear those minor differences between AVR vs direct DAC to amp?
"Ones" hearing isn't the issue, yours is, since you make the claim of hearing the differences.
In science, when one makes a claim, he is asked to provide supporting evidence.
Without evidence the claim is worthless.
 
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The AV7706 is a nice unit. Likely you would just install it and it will work. The AV7706 is best used in balanced output mode, that is, from the XLR outputs. This will provide a clean 2.4V output. The single-ended outputs will only be really clean to 1.2V or so based on ASR measurements and my own. An X6700H, which as a similar price, will provide cleaner SE output to a much higher level if levels over 1.2V are required.

For at least two channel use with an optical digital input (haven't tested other modes), the AV7706 provides better performance when not in direct or pure direct mode. It appears that Marantz uses a combination of digital and analog volume control that avoids sending signals over -3dBFS to the DAC process which reduces THD+N. at least that's my theory. AKM DAC IC's do provide worse THD+N performance at close to 0dBFS.

The AV7706 is very different from say an X6700H in this regard. The X6700H provides more consistent performance. This raises the interesting question of how do most AVP's and AVR's actually process digital data in other than straight DAC use. A mix of digital and analog volume control makes sense.
I have the AV7706 along with a Emotiva XPA 7. Using balanced outputs Audyssey Room correction sets all of my speaker levels at -12db. Using RCA it sets the levels above -12db which I believe is correct. So I am using the RCA connections. I was told in short runs if there is no noise ie.. hiss,hum,buzz that there really is no difference between the XLR and RCA connections. Is this not correct?
 
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I have the AV7706 along with a Emotiva XPA 7. Using balanced outputs Audyssey Room correction sets all of my speaker levels at -12db. Using RCA it sets the levels above -12db which I believe is correct. So I am using the RCA connections. I was told in short runs if there is no noise ie.. hiss,hum,buzz that there really is no difference between the XLR and RCA connections. Is this not correct?
Evidently you have very sensitive loudspeakers or something else is your system allows you to use very little power. Setting the level at greater than -12dB, as you did, was the correct approach.

Your Emotiva has a special problem with XLR connections in that the polarity of the XLR's is reversed. While this can easily be remedied by reversing the speaker leads, using RCA's with the Emotiva XPR series is likely the best way to use the unit. Here are the measurements from Stereophile that note the reversed XLR inputs as well as providing other insights into the interesting measured performance of an XPA unit.

Emotiva XPA Gen3 two-channel power amplifier Measurements | Stereophile.com
 
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Evidently you have very sensitive loudspeakers or something else is your system allows you to use very little power. Setting the level at greater than -12dB, as you did, was the correct approach.

Your Emotiva has a special problem with XLR connections in that the polarity of the XLR's is reversed. While this can easily be remedied by reversing the speaker leads, using RCA's with the Emotiva XPR series is likely the best way to use the unit. Here are the measurements from Stereophile that note the reversed XLR inputs as well as providing other insights into the interesting measured performance of an XPA unit.

Emotiva XPA Gen3 two-channel power amplifier Measurements | Stereophile.com
Thank You for your response. The Emotiva is the only power Amplifier I have ever owned so I have nothing to compare it with. Although I have had no issues with it and it sounds great. ML Motion 60XTI speakers have a 94db sensitivity so maybe I would have the same issue with the XLR outputs using another amplifier
 

Pdxwayne

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"Ones" hearing isn't the issue, yours is, since you make the claim of hearing the differences.
In science, when one makes a claim, he is asked to provide supporting evidence.
Without evidence the claim is worthless.
Objective evidence is in the first post.

NO point argue this further with one who won't even hear 0.5db difference.
 
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NO point argue this further with one who won't even hear 0.5db difference.
How do you define 0.5 db difference? Over the full spectrum? Just a bunch of frequencies? And why 0.5 db as threashold?

I mean, you could hear a difference of 0.5 db at 1 kHz but not at 50 Hz. And you could hear that difference with single tones and not with a more complex music program.
 

peng

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so maybe I would have the same issue with the XLR outputs using another amplifier
There are many power amplifiers that have lower gain/input sensitivity for XLR inputs. Example: Marantz MM8077, McIntosh, Parasound, Bryston, and some older Emotiva's. Some has a selector switch, such as Bryston, though they seem to still recommend you use the lower sensitivity (typically 6 dB0 for the XLR inputs. Also different amps may have different gains, for example the Hypex based amps, an Purifi's have lower gain than your Emotiva amp. So you may not have the same issue with another amplifier.
 
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