How can a $1100 AV receiver sound better than a $2000 one?

K

Keith1964

Audioholic Intern
I have 3 AV receivers in my house that I am auditioning right now, a 2006 Yamaha RX-V2500 that originally listed for $1100, a 2004 Pioneer Elite VSX-55txi that originally listed for $1800, and a 2008 Sony STR-DA5400es that originally listed for $2000. The $1100 06 Yamaha RX-V2500 sounds better than both of the more expensive AV receivers, the 08 $2000 Sony 5400es sounds the worst of the 3, even though the Sony got rave reviews from every review online I have read about it. Sound & Vision even said the Sony 5400es was the best sounding receiver they tested that year, if not the best AV receiver they ever reviewed, I don't get it.
 
L

Leemix

Audioholic Chief
Not set up the same, different volume played at, your own preference?


Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk
 
lovinthehd

lovinthehd

Audioholic Jedi
I don't bother comparing the "sound" of my various avrs (I have four in use in various setups) to each other. How you conduct a comparison could be very much part of your experience, tho, as it's not particularly easy to do well (blinded, level matched, quick switching). I've changed mine around in enough different rooms and speaker combos that it's IME relatively meaningless once you get everything setup properly.

Price doesn't necessarily dictate sound quality in audio gear, tho....but its mostly in your speakers/room rather than the electronics (altho different dsp implementation could well sound different). Then there's simple preference....is it reference or just preference? :)
 
Bucknekked

Bucknekked

Audioholic Field Marshall
I have 3 AV receivers in my house that I am auditioning right now, a 2006 Yamaha RX-V2500 that originally listed for $1100, a 2004 Pioneer Elite VSX-55txi that originally listed for $1800, and a 2008 Sony STR-DA5400es that originally listed for $2000. The $1100 06 Yamaha RX-V2500 sounds better than both of the more expensive AV receivers, the 08 $2000 Sony 5400es sounds the worst of the 3, even though the Sony got rave reviews from every review online I have read about it. Sound & Vision even said the Sony 5400es was the best sounding receiver they tested that year, if not the best AV receiver they ever reviewed, I don't get it.
First off, I don't think there is a credible answer to your query. Too many variables and unknowns.
But, its the kind of question one would naturally ask if you found yourself with 3 AV receivers and you stacked them up and listened to them and 1 sounded better than the other two. Why indeed? I would want to know.

First off is age. A 17 year old receiver vs a 15 year old verses a 13 year old. Where have they been all these years?
There's nothing inherently wrong with age. Well kept and cared for there are units running far longer than those.
But age and condition is a factor.

Second off, did you have any Audessey or room correction SW running? Did you do any tweaking to any of them?
How did you level test their outputs? A very slight volume difference will make them sound quite different and its tough to level match products by ear. You'd have to use a meter or measure of some type.

These are just the first things that come to mind. I'm sure the amplifier experts here would have a far better set of questions to ask and opinions to offer. I would want to know just like you want to know.
But, I think a lot more info would have to get developed to really develop a working theory
 
Trell

Trell

Audioholic Samurai
Here are some benchmarks of the receivers in OP:

 
K

Keith1964

Audioholic Intern
Here are some benchmarks of the receivers in OP:

I have already read all those, the most expensive ( Sony ) has the worst power ratings of the 3.
 
S

Speedskater

Audioholic Chief
It's easy to get a receiver with a DSP chip into an unexpected mode.
 
Trell

Trell

Audioholic Samurai
I have already read all those, the most expensive ( Sony ) has the worst power ratings of the 3.
I linked those benchmarks for reference and not to indicate that I don't believe you.
 
K

Keith1964

Audioholic Intern
All 3 receivers were tested in the same room/setup, same speakers. All 3 had auto cal run, tested and fine tuned with a DB meter. All I am saying is, in my room/setup, the least expensive ( Yamaha ) sounds the best. It just shows, that more expensive doesn't always mean it sounds better.
 
Trell

Trell

Audioholic Samurai
All 3 receivers were tested in the same room/setup, same speakers. All 3 had auto cal run, tested and fine tuned with a DB meter. All I am saying is, in my room/setup, the least expensive ( Yamaha ) sounds the best. It just shows, that more expensive doesn't always mean it sounds better.
Expensive certainly does not mean better, that's for sure.
 
lovinthehd

lovinthehd

Audioholic Jedi
All 3 receivers were tested in the same room/setup, same speakers. All 3 had auto cal run, tested and fine tuned with a DB meter. All I am saying is, in my room/setup, the least expensive ( Yamaha ) sounds the best. It just shows, that more expensive doesn't always mean it sounds better.
It wouldn't surprise me that YPAO would beat out DCAC or even MCACC. How about if you just setup manually, and compare in a pure-direct type mode to minimize dsp?
 
AcuDefTechGuy

AcuDefTechGuy

Audioholic Jedi
I have 3 AV receivers in my house that I am auditioning right now, a 2006 Yamaha RX-V2500 that originally listed for $1100, a 2004 Pioneer Elite VSX-55txi that originally listed for $1800, and a 2008 Sony STR-DA5400es that originally listed for $2000. The $1100 06 Yamaha RX-V2500 sounds better than both of the more expensive AV receivers, the 08 $2000 Sony 5400es sounds the worst of the 3, even though the Sony got rave reviews from every review online I have read about it. Sound & Vision even said the Sony 5400es was the best sounding receiver they tested that year, if not the best AV receiver they ever reviewed, I don't get it.
It’s called bias. :D

If the three AVR’s you mentioned are all set up the same, they should sound the same, unless one is defective.

But if you prefer Yamaha, continue using Yamaha. I also prefer Yamaha. :D
 
Last edited:
lovinthehd

lovinthehd

Audioholic Jedi
It’s called bias. :D

If they are all set up the same, they should sound the same, unless one is defective.

But, hey, if you prefer Yamaha, continue using Yamaha. I use Yamaha. :D
He set each one up with their own setup routine then fiddled with the settings manually, so I'd say they were definitely not setup the same :)
 
mtrycrafts

mtrycrafts

Audioholic Slumlord
To answer your original question, by a screwed up protocol. ;)
 
K

Keith1964

Audioholic Intern
It’s called bias. :D

If they are all set up the same, they should sound the same, unless one is defective.

But, hey, if you prefer Yamaha, continue using Yamaha. I use Yamaha. :D
They would not all sound the same, even if they were set up the same.. So you are telling me, if I set up a cheap $150 Sony AV receiver the same as a $4000 Rotel, they will sound the same? BS.
 
lovinthehd

lovinthehd

Audioholic Jedi
In that scenario between a Sony avr and the Rotel whatever costs $4k, the likely differences would be in dsp, power, impedance handling capabilities....but with a reasonable easy to drive speaker kept within the limits of the lesser amp and eliminating the different dsp, it's very possible you wouldn't pass a proper ABX test. This is an interesting experiment http://matrixhifi.com/ENG_contenedor_ppec.htm
 
S

sterling shoote

Audioholic Field Marshall
I have 3 AV receivers in my house that I am auditioning right now, a 2006 Yamaha RX-V2500 that originally listed for $1100, a 2004 Pioneer Elite VSX-55txi that originally listed for $1800, and a 2008 Sony STR-DA5400es that originally listed for $2000. The $1100 06 Yamaha RX-V2500 sounds better than both of the more expensive AV receivers, the 08 $2000 Sony 5400es sounds the worst of the 3, even though the Sony got rave reviews from every review online I have read about it. Sound & Vision even said the Sony 5400es was the best sounding receiver they tested that year, if not the best AV receiver they ever reviewed, I don't get it.
How can things that are different be expected to sound the same. I am not surprised and the cost to sound quality ratio has been made moot, since the 2008 world wide economic down-turn caused all consumer electronics entities to conjure means to produce better products for less money just to stay in business. Also, DACs have improved and cost of DACs have decreased.
 
T

tjcinnamon

Audioholic Intern
Room correction is the single biggest factor.
The new Onkyos are supposed to have Dirac. My NAD has a great amp and Dirac. Costs 1300 for 7.1.4 setup and really powerful amp for an AVR.

But the answer is room correction.
 
Out-Of-Phase

Out-Of-Phase

Audioholic General
"They would not all sound the same, even if they were set up the same.. So you are telling me, if I set up a cheap $150 Sony AV receiver the same as a $4000 Rotel, they will sound the same? BS."

How is it BS?
 

Latest posts


newsletter
  • RBHsound.com
  • BlueJeansCable.com
  • SVS Sound Subwoofers
  • Experience the Martin Logan Montis
Top