Marantz NR1200 review

T

TankTop5

Full Audioholic
Since the launch of the Marantz NR1200 I have watched regularly for a review, sadly the only thing I can find are regurgitated launch day write-ups most likely penned by Marantz marketing team. Lacking any reviews I decided to check with my local brick and mortar stores, the first a local chain that carries Marantz said it’s not something they will ever carry but can order for me. Left there and went to Best Buy and Magnolia, same answer as before. With that information I’m left with coming to a conclusion based on specs alone. Based on specs it’s probably a decent 2 channel receiver and streamer but fails at being a quality stereo home theater receiver. The dual sub outputs aren’t LFE’s, you can set the crossover for the subs but not the main speakers and lastly they did not include Audyssey. If the goal was stereo home theater, they failed. Too many of us don’t have the budget, room shape or a wife that will allow us acoustic treatment to their living rooms. The second way they failed is mentioned above, almost two months after launch they can’t get a review and no stores will carry it. I’m going to make a prediction that the NR1200 fails miserably, I only hope they go back to the drawing board and get it right next time.
 
lovinthehd

lovinthehd

Audioholic Slumlord
You want to see it bench tested or what do you look for in a review?
 
T

TankTop5

Full Audioholic
You want to see it bench tested or what do you look for in a review?
Good point. Why do I want a review when it doesn’t have the features it needs needs to compete in the segment it’s designed for. Missing the ability to crossover the mains, you can’t even set distance on your speakers. It’s just a stereo receiver with 4K pass through, not a 2.1 AVR. I guess I don’t see the point in making a device by a premium manufacturer that doesn’t do anything well, or even mediocre...
 
lovinthehd

lovinthehd

Audioholic Slumlord
I don't see the point in any 2ch unit these days myself, not having bass management is pretty common in the 2ch stuff, too. Why would you need to set delay for 2 speakers, tho? Or just the sub? Was curious if you thought a subjective review would be useful somehow. I just read the manual to see what something can/can't do as reviews tend to be incomplete in that sense anyways. I do find measurements helpful, tho.
 
T

TankTop5

Full Audioholic
I don't see the point in any 2ch unit these days myself....
Cost. I want high quality, it’s much more feasible to build a 2 ch system than a multi ch system for me and many people.


[/QUOTE]...not having bass management is pretty common in the 2ch stuff, too. Why would you need to set delay for 2 speakers, tho? Or just the sub?[/QUOTE]

That’s my point, if you want a hi quality 2 ch sound bar killing system why not include bass management, and crossover your mains, while you’re at it throw in some room correction? Why not build a solid 2 ch AVR, marketed right you could open up a whole new segment.


I’ve been looking and there’s a couple of uber expensive units that do what I want, Lyngdorf and Arcam (discontinued) and cheap Onkyo/Integra. The former are out of my budget and the latter scare me with their amp specs to hook up quality speakers to (the Onkyo/Integra amp specs remind of selling cars, the numbers don’t make any sense, they just wrote some random stuff on a paper).
 
P

PENG

Audioholic Overlord
Cost. I want high quality, it’s much more feasible to build a 2 ch system than a multi ch system for me and many people.
Just out of curiosity, is cost really an issue practically speaking? You can get a multi-channel AVR at the same, or lower price point if you go with a one year old model, so is it really cost, or more the "form follows function" principle you want to stick to?

For example, you can get the NR1608 now for only $479 or the NR1609 $499, brand new.
https://www.amazon.com/Marantz-NR1609-50W-Amplifier-Compatible-Bluetooth/dp/B07CVGRMX2

or $699 for the AVR-X3500H if size is not an issue.

Aside from the from follows function principle, the two channel versions offers no practical advantage that I can think of. The fact is, inside the box of those two channel units you will find the same kind of electronics such as ICs, DACs preamp/amp section used in the 7.1 units, except few amps on the boards and the 7.1 ICs are connected for 2 channel use, i.e. not fully utilized.

I suppose there is one advantage, that is, less parts to fail and less heat, that could be easily and virtually equalized with the use of an external quiet cooling fan.
 
lovinthehd

lovinthehd

Audioholic Slumlord
Cost. I want high quality, it’s much more feasible to build a 2 ch system than a multi ch system for me and many people.
...not having bass management is pretty common in the 2ch stuff, too. Why would you need to set delay for 2 speakers, tho? Or just the sub?[/QUOTE]

That’s my point, if you want a hi quality 2 ch sound bar killing system why not include bass management, and crossover your mains, while you’re at it throw in some room correction? Why not build a solid 2 ch AVR, marketed right you could open up a whole new segment.


I’ve been looking and there’s a couple of uber expensive units that do what I want, Lyngdorf and Arcam (discontinued) and cheap Onkyo/Integra. The former are out of my budget and the latter scare me with their amp specs to hook up quality speakers to (the Onkyo/Integra amp specs remind of selling cars, the numbers don’t make any sense, they just wrote some random stuff on a paper).[/QUOTE]

Yes, a multich quality system will often cost much more, mostly due the additional speakers. The realities of the marketplace puts a premium here in the US particularly on 2ch gear, tho, as they just don't sell as much of it. Often better deals on a multich avr vs 2.0 as you've seen already (and you probably get a bigger power supply, too....an avr works fine in 2ch mode, too) and if you want bass management and a good REQ program . There may be such a 2ch unit as you want....some day....if they think they can sell it in sufficient numbers. May not happen.
 
T

TankTop5

Full Audioholic
@TankTop5 curious, what speakers do you have?
I’ve mentioned them a couple times here, Focal 706’s are what I’m running now. Bought a pair of Dyn Special 40’s to which the wife was pissed and I have them up for sale. 2 months and not a nibble at $2k, think it’s time to suggest to my wife that I enjoy them. Which brings me to the reason I’m on this information expedition. As discussed previously my 40 watt receiver could easily clip at 12’ for the power hungry Dyn’s. Also the Dyn’s play down to 41hrz and it’s near impossible to get my PB1000 to play nice with them. If I could get a receiver that I could cross over the Dyn’s at closer to 80hrz and use some correction software I think they would play nice with the PB1000. The Onkyo/Integra dynamic rating over the RMS is only 20 watts and then the give a weird 3ohm rating, just doesn’t pass the smell test for me. A real nice 1 year old 5.1 or 7.1 is probably the answer.
 
T

TankTop5

Full Audioholic
Just out of curiosity, is cost really an issue practically speaking? You can get a multi-channel AVR at the same, or lower price point if you go with a one year old model, so is it really cost, or more the "form follows function" principle you want to stick to?

For example, you can get the NR1608 now for only $479 or the NR1609 $499, brand new.
https://www.amazon.com/Marantz-NR1609-50W-Amplifier-Compatible-Bluetooth/dp/B07CVGRMX2

or $699 for the AVR-X3500H if size is not an issue.

Aside from the from follows function principle, the two channel versions offers no practical advantage that I can think of. The fact is, inside the box of those two channel units you will find the same kind of electronics such as ICs, DACs preamp/amp section used in the 7.1 units, except few amps on the boards and the 7.1 ICs are connected for 2 channel use, i.e. not fully utilized.

I suppose there is one advantage, that is, less parts to fail and less heat, that could be easily and virtually equalized with the use of an external quiet cooling fan.
Marantz slimline AVR’s lack the power I need, that’s why I was excited about the NR1200, they dumped the multi channel stuff and put an amp in there instead.
 
lovinthehd

lovinthehd

Audioholic Slumlord
I’ve mentioned them a couple times here, Focal 706’s are what I’m running now. Bought a pair of Dyn Special 40’s to which the wife was pissed and I have them up for sale. 2 months and not a nibble at $2k, think it’s time to suggest to my wife that I enjoy them. Which brings me to the reason I’m on this information expedition. As discussed previously my 40 watt receiver could easily clip at 12’ for the power hungry Dyn’s. Also the Dyn’s play down to 41hrz and it’s near impossible to get my PB1000 to play nice with them. If I could get a receiver that I could cross over the Dyn’s at closer to 80hrz and use some correction software I think they would play nice with the PB1000. The Onkyo/Integra dynamic rating over the RMS is only 20 watts and then the give a weird 3ohm rating, just doesn’t pass the smell test for me. A real nice 1 year old 5.1 or 7.1 is probably the answer.
Yeah was too lazy to go look for your speakers, sounds familiar now. I picked up a used Denon 3808 from a member here a while ago, plenty of power for 7ch let alone 2ch....https://www.ebay.com/itm/Denon-AVR-3808CI-Home-Theater-Receiver/153637834338?hash=item23c5874e62:g:ogUAAOSwquRddvuL
 
T

TankTop5

Full Audioholic
So? What model and was it new/used? Well ventilated?
It was a 1910, I was using it well ventilated sitting on top of a cabinet. I think it’s a bit older than what yours.

Terrible photo but it was sitting where the NAD is

 
lovinthehd

lovinthehd

Audioholic Slumlord
Probably similar age but further down the hierarchy, 3808 was towards the top (think both about 10 years old tho, both HDMI 1.3a) and XT instead of just MultEQ, more powerful amp section. Hard to know what someone else did with a unit when buying used, tho. That's why I felt okay from another forum member who had it since new....but with a return policy and maybe the square trade warranty, and the purchase of a remote (or I'll give you the main remote from mine, I don't use it, I use the secondary remote...yes, came with two remotes)....
 
T

TankTop5

Full Audioholic
Probably similar age but further down the hierarchy, 3808 was towards the top (think both about 10 years old tho, both HDMI 1.3a) and XT instead of just MultEQ, more powerful amp section. Hard to know what someone else did with a unit when buying used, tho. That's why I felt okay from another forum member who had it since new....but with a return policy and maybe the square trade warranty, and the purchase of a remote (or I'll give you the main remote from mine, I don't use it, I use the secondary remote...yes, came with two remotes)....
In all honesty it’s probably in the price range I should be looking at and does all I need it to right now but... I think I’m going to hold off until I find something with a couple more modern features and I can pay more for what I want. I’m the guy that spends too little then kicks himself later. I do appreciate the offer though.
 
Pogre

Pogre

Audioholic Spartan
My 1910 still works. My neighbor has it and is using it in his 2 channel setup...
 
lovinthehd

lovinthehd

Audioholic Slumlord
In all honesty it’s probably in the price range I should be looking at and does all I need it to right now but... I think I’m going to hold off until I find something with a couple more modern features and I can pay more for what I want. I’m the guy that spends too little then kicks himself later. I do appreciate the offer though.
The 3808 has been out in my garage/workshop now for 2 1/2 years with quite a few hours on it....altho I do use a small cooling fan to help out as I made a bit of a dust cover for it so it wasn't too easy for sawdust to settle on it. Just what features do you want in the unit aside from bass management? HDMI?
 
P

PENG

Audioholic Overlord
Marantz slimline AVR’s lack the power I need, that’s why I was excited about the NR1200, they dumped the multi channel stuff and put an amp in there instead.
Thank you, now I seem to remember you mentioned the Dyn Spec 40 before, on another thread I guess. Sorry about you 3808, but I think that's more luck than a reflection of Denon AVR's reliability. My very old 3805 and 4308 were in great conditions when I sold one and gave one away, both are still in top shape even now.

So if it form follows functions is not the factor here, then I assume you are still open to considering a 7.1 AVR. You can get a AVR-X3500H for probably less than $699 brand new with a 3 year warranty or Marantz SR5013 for less if you search hard. Or consider Accessories4less.com, for even less dollars.

Talk about "an amp in there", both 7.1 AVRs have stronger power supply (for two channel use) and amps in it than the NR1200 for sure. An AVR is an AVR, 2,5,7 through 13.1 channel or not. The AVR-X3400H (X3500H should be the same except it is more up to date in features) is a fantastic sounding little AVR, as good as my much more expensive and powerful separates when used below its limits.

I know it makes a lot of sense to use a 2.1 AVR for 2.1 use and a 5.1 AVR for 5.1 use. I suggested the 7.1 versions because of the fantastic value of the one year outdated models. This seems to happen only with 7.1, and now may be 9.1 models too, because of their sales volume, so value shoppers who are practically minded can take advantage of this fact/phenomena.

I read the Stereophile review on the Special 40, and I definitely wouldn't use any slim line avrs, not even the NR1200 to drive them except in a small room sitting within 8 feet +/- and listen at well below reference level. The 7.1 AVRs would at least give you a couple of dB more headroom, more for transient peaks. Such medium low efficient 6 ohm nominal speakers are not designed to play very loud to begin with, but it would still be a shame to match them with a 75 W rated slim line 2.1 receiver that has power consumption rated 180 W soak and wet. Power consumption means little, but could be a good indicator if used to compare D&M class AB amps.
 

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