Is an AV receiver + Amp the best solution for me?

T

tobankhot

Audiophyte
My first real audio system currently functions for both a small scale home theater and music listening. I have an Onkyo TX NR626 with SVS prime tower and center, SVS PB 1000 sub, and for surrounds I have Niles in ceiling speakers (7.1 setup). Most reviews I've read recommend a decent dedicated amp for my Prime towers and I'm wondering the best way to get a home theater and stereo experience. I've thought about getting a new receiver with pre-outs and then a dedicated 2 channel amp to better power the towers. Would the receiver do a decent job on the remaining speakers? I'm I'm concerned about leaving the center without an amp.
Thanks for any info.
 
P

PENG

Audioholic Slumlord
My first real audio system currently functions for both a small scale home theater and music listening. I have an Onkyo TX NR626 with SVS prime tower and center, SVS PB 1000 sub, and for surrounds I have Niles in ceiling speakers (7.1 setup). Most reviews I've read recommend a decent dedicated amp for my Prime towers and I'm wondering the best way to get a home theater and stereo experience. I've thought about getting a new receiver with pre-outs and then a dedicated 2 channel amp to better power the towers. Would the receiver do a decent job on the remaining speakers? I'm I'm concerned about leaving the center without an amp.
Thanks for any info.
A knowledgeable reviewer who tell you that should have stated the load conditions including speaker sensitivity, distance and you listening habit (how loud, in SPL). To get a sensible answer instead of just recommending a decent dedicated amp you can try the following:

- Use an online calculator to help you determine the power you need for your applications.
- Email SVS support, but give them your listening distance and how loud (SPL) you require.

SVS does have the following to say in their FAQ:

Support & Service FAQs | Best Bookshelf Speakers – SVS (svsound.com)

Please note that it is just a general statement, just like your "Most reviews I've read recommend a decent dedicated amp for my Prime towers" , both are general statements and both can be true. One being optimistic while the other is being conservative.

DO I NEED AN EXTERNAL AMPLIFIER TO POWER THE SVS ULTRA LOUDSPEAKERS?

The SVS Ultra loudspeakers have excellent sensitivity and are easy to drive with any quality A/V receiver. If the Ultra loudspeakers are being placed in a large listening environment and will be driven to high playback levels, and external amplifier will help avoid amplifier clipping and maintain optimal system dynamics..
 
witchdoctor

witchdoctor

Full Audioholic
Onkyo makes very good amplifiers. I own the RZ630 and it has no issues powering 9 speakers. If your goal is to get the best experience I would save money on buying another amp and focus on the room. Are your speakers setup up as closely as possible to the angles recommended by Dolby? What type of room do you have and is it treated?
 
witchdoctor

witchdoctor

Full Audioholic
This quote is from a review of your receiver:
What we can say is that AV receiver sound quality has much, much less effect on overall sound quality than speakers or room acoustics, so you're better off spending your home theater budget there. CNET's sound quality evaluations are strictly subjective, with resident golden ear Steve Guttenberg comparing similarly priced models in an identical listening environment using the same speakers.
 
lovinthehd

lovinthehd

Audioholic Jedi
My first real audio system currently functions for both a small scale home theater and music listening. I have an Onkyo TX NR626 with SVS prime tower and center, SVS PB 1000 sub, and for surrounds I have Niles in ceiling speakers (7.1 setup). Most reviews I've read recommend a decent dedicated amp for my Prime towers and I'm wondering the best way to get a home theater and stereo experience. I've thought about getting a new receiver with pre-outs and then a dedicated 2 channel amp to better power the towers. Would the receiver do a decent job on the remaining speakers? I'm I'm concerned about leaving the center without an amp.
Thanks for any info.
Without knowing levels, distances from speakers, etc, hard to know what might be an improvement. What sounds off now? Or can you simply not get loud enough without running into distortion/clipping? Using that spl calculator peng provided is a good start. If you do get an avr with a full set of pre-outs I'd think about powering all three fronts, there are three channel amps (or three one channel, or two two-channel amps :) ). While I don't use external amps with all my avrs, I do buy avrs with a full set of pre-outs for flexibility in that regard so you can change rooms/speakers more readily.
 
F

fmw

Audioholic Samurai
I use an AV receiver and a powered subwoofer and I can drive people out of the 12X20 ft room without having the equipment work up a sweat. Few people need external amplifiers. Many people want them.
 
mono-bloc

mono-bloc

Audioholic
Few people need external amplifiers. Many people want them.
Are you confused

What about the people who would never buy or need an AVR. A good quality multi-channel pre-amp together with a matching Power amp takes a lot of beating.
 
lovinthehd

lovinthehd

Audioholic Jedi
Are you confused

What about the people who would never buy or need an AVR. A good quality multi-channel pre-amp together with a matching Power amp takes a lot of beating.
That's still relatively few people....
 
mono-bloc

mono-bloc

Audioholic
That's still relatively few people....
Your probably correct, Jo Average goes into the box sellers, to be confronted with a range of AVR's and Sound Bars. No sign of any integrated models , let alone Pre-Power systems. And the answers quite simple AVR's are cheap, The Chinese knock them out by the thousand every week. And there full of features your never going to need or use. So why would you want anything else. And they up'date there range of models every 8 to 12 months, It really is food for the gullible
I've got Pre-Power systems that would be close to 25 years old, still as good as the day they where produced. Your lucky to get 5 years out of an AVR
 
lovinthehd

lovinthehd

Audioholic Jedi
Your probably correct, Jo Average goes into the box sellers, to be confronted with a range of AVR's and Sound Bars. No sign of any integrated models , let alone Pre-Power systems. And the answers quite simple AVR's are cheap, The Chinese knock them out by the thousand every week. And there full of features your never going to need or use. So why would you want anything else. And they up'date there range of models every 8 to 12 months, It really is food for the gullible
I've got Pre-Power systems that would be close to 25 years old, still as good as the day they where produced. Your lucky to get 5 years out of an AVR
Many here are Joe Average, wtf that means. As opposed to what, silly audiophool nonsense? The "high end"? Many avrs are simply suited for actual use. If you need something beyond that there certainly are options. Few actually go the pre-pro/amp route, that's one reason why the prices on pre-pros are relatively high. I have several 10 year old avrs, but also old 2ch separates, but generally I use the avrs as they're simply more useful for modern use and speaker formats and bass management, etc. What 25 year old pre-pro can handle modern codecs?
 
Last edited:
F

fmw

Audioholic Samurai
Are you confused

What about the people who would never buy or need an AVR. A good quality multi-channel pre-amp together with a matching Power amp takes a lot of beating.
And produces no real benefit over a less expensive AVR. I do understand. I've been where are too. My external amp is buried inside my subwoofer. It certainly matters.
 
mono-bloc

mono-bloc

Audioholic
that's one reason why the prices on pre-pros are relatively high
You seem to have a mind set on the better things in life, Which is a shame, Everyone likes the better things, some are successful, in there employment, and have money to spend on nice things ,new cars, watches ,etc, etc. Not everyone has to shop at "BestBuy" or Costco, Not that there is anything wrong with that. But we all look at the higher priced things, and dream, If only. But yes you are correct, Some things with a lower distribution or production rate are more expensive. Chinese produced products are cheap for a reason, Much lower employment wage rates, Product components are obtained by the million, there by cutting down production costs. Your average AVR production costs are between 20 and 50 dollars per unit. And that's probably an exaggeration. And thousands are produced every week. Now look at what you consider high priced, Some high-end products are produced five at a time, are hand assembled. Better custom components are used. And quality power supplies do cost a lot more them your average AVR's SMPS. And people buy these products simply because they can. We don't all drive a Ferrari or a Porsche, but we look with envy when we see one.. It's the nature of the beast
 
lovinthehd

lovinthehd

Audioholic Jedi
You seem to have a mind set on the better things in life, Which is a shame, Everyone likes the better things, some are successful, in there employment, and have money to spend on nice things ,new cars, watches ,etc, etc. Not everyone has to shop at "BestBuy" or Costco, Not that there is anything wrong with that. But we all look at the higher priced things, and dream, If only. But yes you are correct, Some things with a lower distribution or production rate are more expensive. Chinese produced products are cheap for a reason, Much lower employment wage rates, Product components are obtained by the million, there by cutting down production costs. Your average AVR production costs are between 20 and 50 dollars per unit. And that's probably an exaggeration. And thousands are produced every week. Now look at what you consider high priced, Some high-end products are produced five at a time, are hand assembled. Better custom components are used. And quality power supplies do cost a lot more them your average AVR's SMPS. And people buy these products simply because they can. We don't all drive a Ferrari or a Porsche, but we look with envy when we see one.. It's the nature of the beast
Whut? I do enjoy the better things in life....in proportion tho. If you want some slightly more esoteric solution, go for it. It's just not particularly practical nor different audibly.
 
lovinthehd

lovinthehd

Audioholic Jedi
In your opinion
In my experience over the last 50 years with a variety of gear in various configurations/rooms. My opinions aren't mine alone, they're shared by quite a few here. YMMV, tho.
 
AcuDefTechGuy

AcuDefTechGuy

Audioholic Jedi
Chinese produced products are cheap for a reason
Well wait a minute. Components from Anthem, Arcam, Rotel, etc., are all made in China or Vietnam. Yet they cost $5,500-7,500 each.
 
AcuDefTechGuy

AcuDefTechGuy

Audioholic Jedi
Whut? I do enjoy the better things in life....in proportion tho. If you want some slightly more esoteric solution, go for it. It's just not particularly practical nor different audibly.
Yeah, we all PRIORITIZE differently. For most of us, this audio hobby is high on the priority list, but not the highest. And, as you say, many of us aren’t willing to spend more money if we don’t think it is worth it.

My 4 houses in Orange County California are a little higher in priority than audio. :D

I bet @CreoleDC upcoming new house purchase is higher on his priority list than audio as well.
 
lovinthehd

lovinthehd

Audioholic Jedi
Yeah, we all PRIORITIZE differently. For most of us, this audio hobby is high on the priority list, but not the highest. And, as you say, many of us aren’t willing to spend more money if we don’t think it is worth it.

My 4 houses in Orange County California are a little higher in priority than audio. :D

I bet @CreoleDC upcoming new house purchase is higher on his priority list than audio as well.
Maybe you can install Mikey in a new location to go with his new screenname? Perhaps one of your houses in OC might be a new experience for him, get him out of the swamp and all that :) Orange County in general would be one of the last places I'd want to live in California, tho. Much better before it got "developed".
 
AcuDefTechGuy

AcuDefTechGuy

Audioholic Jedi
Maybe you can install Mikey in a new location to go with his new screenname? Perhaps one of your houses in OC might be a new experience for him, get him out of the swamp and all that :) Orange County in general would be one of the last places I'd want to live in California, tho. Much better before it got "developed".
Oh I don’t want to live in California. Unfortunately my wife loves So-California. :(

So she wanted to buy real estate in OC.
 

Latest posts

newsletter

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