In this comparison article we look at receivers around the $750 price point. We have offerings from Yamaha and Harman Kardon at $649, Pioneer at $699, and Denon, Marantz, and Sherwood Newcastle at $799. While you'd think that the differences in receivers at this price point would be a matter of inches, you'd be wrong. Manufacturers are trying pretty hard to differentiate themselves. The question is - what do you need?
Discuss "2009 $750 Receiver Comparison Guide" here. Read the article.
Nicely done! It's good to see those guys compared. Surpirsed that the Denon didn't have multichannel outs....
However the new Pioneer VSX-21 only weighs 29 lbs and not 36. However Pioneer only states this on the product sheet. 36 lbs is the shipping weight.
It would have also been nice to see the Onkyo TX-SR706. It came out around the same time as the HK.
Nice article. Its interesting that, with the exception of Sherwood there is not much difference between the different receivers. Enough that different receivers will be more attractive to different groups of people though.
I am a little surprised that you did not mention power handling (probably not the right term) in this group as it is something you highlighted in a separate article not that long ago. I am willing to bet that not all the receivers in this group will comfortably handle a 4 Ohm load and that will be important to some people.
"Given time, we can come to believe that many different variations on the truth are apparently equally entertaining." - Floyd E. Toole
Axiom M80 mains, Qs8 surrounds, dual M2 centers, EP350 sub, Sony 50A2020 display, Denon 2808 AVR
amp sections of all the receivers listed. The HT magazine did a review of the 5003 and it produced 103 watts per channel at .1% distortion with all channels driven and 88.2 watts with all 7 channels driven. Pretty impressive in my book.
The 5003 is actually on my list but I have really grown to like the Audyssey Dynamic EQ function on my Onkyo. So it's coming down to these two receivers. Plus I can get the Onkyo much cheaper.
I understand that the price mentioned are MRPs, but wouldn't it be fair if street prices are used for comparison? Amazon.com /JR etc can be taken as standard as these online stores are accessible by almost everyone.
HK 254 IIRC has support for iPod, though the dock is not included in the package. It is free with 354, which sells for $549 on amazon.
IMO the best $750 dollar receiver today is one that cost 2-3 times more in the not to distant past, like the Pioneer SC-05 which was going for $699 recently or the Marantz 8001 for $699 at AC4less or some of the 8002s that have sold recently for $650 to $950. Any of these top of the line models to me sound much better than their less expensive stablemates.
I've been watching some Marantz 8500s go for $350 to $400 in the last couple of weeks, and other than HDMI (which I don't need in my receiver at this point) has the same specs as the 8001 and 8002s.
Sound Quality rules ( as I listen to Miles Kind of Blue)
Out of this list, the Marantz or HK would be my pick with Denon following closely behind. The HK 254 (refurbished) can be had for $220 on eBay right now and can't be touched by any of the competitors at that price.